U.S. House committee approves Coast Guard reauthorization

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Yesterday, the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee unanimously approved the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2019 (H.R. 3049).

The National Marine Manufacturers Association said in a statement that it “played an important role in shaping the bill, which includes key provisions that would improve safety measures for the 142 million Americans who take to the water each year.”

The legislation includes a provision that would mandate the wearing of engine cut-off devices for boats less than 26 feet long when under way. It builds on the steps Congress took last year when it required manufacturers to install the devices on most boats below 27 feet LOA. Most builders have been doing this for years.

The bill would also give the U.S. Coast Guard the ability to streamline approval of construction standards and technologies for the recreational boating industry. Finally, H.R. 3049 would ensure that members of the Coast Guard receive a paycheck if there is a government shutdown in the future.