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Boaters, anglers protest new fees in Hawaii

A coalition of boaters and anglers held a demonstration at the Hawaii Capitol Monday in protest of proposed rules they say would restrict their recreation and lifestyle.

The demonstrators are against a proposal to increase fees at harbors and parks and restrict certain fishing activities, including night fishing at Kapapa Islet in Kaneohe Bay, the Honolulu Star Bulletin newspaper reports.

The proposed Recreational Renaissance Plan B, named to reflect the legislature's rejection of Gov. Linda Lingle's first plan, increases mooring rates at state harbors by $3.47 per foot per month over five years, as well as fees. The mooring rates now vary by harbor, with a slip at the Ala Wai costing $5.25 per foot per month.

The rules also include a non-resident entry fee of $1 per walk-in and $5 per car at eight state parks.

State officials have said the mooring and park fees are needed to pay for repair and maintenance at recreational facilities that are falling apart.

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