The Great Lakes Boating Federation is calling for a public hearing to give all stakeholders an opportunity to express concerns about the proposed closure of the Chicago Locks to prevent Asian carp from entering the Great Lakes.
The action is in response to Michigan's recent filing of a lawsuit to enforce the closure of the locks. Ohio and Minnesota have since joined the lawsuit as plaintiffs.
The closure would adversely affect some 7,000 Chicago-area boaters, the federation says.
"Without a workable solution to access the river from the lake, boaters will be unable to continue using the river system that they have utilized for decades recreationally and for storing their boats," said F. Ned Dikmen, chairman of the Great Lakes Boating Federation, in a statement.
"Shutting the locks permanently could jeopardize the $80 million economic impact that flows into Chicago's economy," he added.