Michigan trade group applauds new dredging bills

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Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder recently signed a dredging assistance package.

For the last few months, the Michigan Boating Industries Association and its lobbying firm in Lansing, Muchmore Harrington Smalley and Associates, have been working to establish solutions and funding for dredging in the state.

The package Snyder signed Wednesday contained five bills:

HB 4398: Watercraft; marinas; dredging material from Great Lakes bottomlands determined to be largely sand; revise permit fee.

HB 4399: Natural resources; Great Lakes; expedited permit process; allow for emergencies.

HB 4400: Watercraft; marinas; dredging material from inland lakes and streams determined to be largely sand; revise fee.

SB 233: Natural resources; funding; natural resources trust fund; provide appropriations.

SB 252: Watercraft; marinas; marina dredging loan origination program.

MBIA chairman Jim Coburn, executive director Nicki Polan and MBIA member Jim Mrozinski, of Onekema Marine, attended the signing by the governor and thanked him for supporting the marine industry.

Public Act 9 provides funding for dredging Michigan's public harbors and Public Act 10 provides for the low-interest loan program.

The MBIA said it will quickly reach out to the banker's association to find participating lenders in the dredging program.

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