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New year, new boating laws

The new year brings with it new laws, including those governing boating. Here’s a sampling of some of the new regulations that will affect boaters this year:

In New Hampshire, a new speed limit went into place on Lake Winnipesaukee. The new law imposes limits of 45 mph during the day and 25 mph at night for a two-year evaluation period.

In South Carolina, a state law that went into effect in December makes it a crime to abandon a watercraft on public lands or waters for more than 45 days. If a boat has been moored, stranded, wrecked or is sinking or sunk and has been left unattended, the state can remove it at the owner's expense. Penalties include fines between $1,000 and $5,000 or up to 30 days in jail.

Also in South Carolina, the price of watercraft and outboard decals and duplicate registration cards increased from $1 to $5. Late fees of up to $30 can be charged to those who don’t register within 60 days of purchase.

In North Carolina, charter fishing-boat operators are now allowed to purchase a block of 10, 10-day coastal recreational fishing licenses for their customers.

By June, New Jersey boaters will be required to pass a boating safety course approved by the state’s marine police.

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