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Old 04-01-2015, 09:59   #91
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Re: responsibility

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Sailorchic, as you may know but others might not, I believe that California, USA does not actually require any sort of license for recreational boaters, but will be joining the bulk of the US states in implementing boater safety education requirements via requiring boaters to obtain a California Vessel Operator Card, for some boaters beginning on 1 January 2018, and including boaters of all ages, with some exceptions, by 1 January 2025 under Senate Bill 941.
Yes currently california does not require a CVOC. As you clearly say, its not a license. But then its issued by the state division of boating and waterworks (DBW) and will require an examination in order to get the card. What that will look like no one knows yet. There will be a fee of up to $30 for the CVOC. Lets not call that a tax either. In order to operate a recreational vessel in California, folks will need a CVOC, issued by the state starting in 2018 to 2025.

It may not be called a "License", but you'll get a ticket and fine if you don't have one. Does not matter if its called a license, permit or vessel operator card. It will be required and issued by the state and has fees and fines. If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it's a duck.

Here's the actual bill: http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/fa...201320140SB941
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Old 04-01-2015, 10:41   #92
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Re: responsibility

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Every professional mariner is taught that floating navigational markers can be dragged out of position by heavy weather, or collision with a barge etc..... So is never used to fix a position.
Channels silt in too. Happens a lot at the minor harbor entries on the Great Lakes.

We found that some knucklehead had apparently moved several islands in the North Channel (Lake Huron). Our GPS with the latest stuff insisted we drive straight through them. - later we found 150 foot water where it was supposed to be 54. Ran aground in rocks off Detour Village in 9 to 12 feet of water. The impact was at 4 feet on the keel.
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Old 04-01-2015, 11:07   #93
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Re: responsibility

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Yes currently california does not require a CVOC. As you clearly say, its not a license. But then its issued by the state division of boating and waterworks (DBW) and will require an examination in order to get the card. What that will look like no one knows yet. There will be a fee of up to $30 for the CVOC. Lets not call that a tax either. In order to operate a recreational vessel in California, folks will need a CVOC, issued by the state starting in 2018 to 2025.

It may not be called a "License", but you'll get a ticket and fine if you don't have one. Does not matter if its called a license, permit or vessel operator card. It will be required and issued by the state and has fees and fines. If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it's a duck.

Here's the actual bill: Bill Text - SB-941 Vessel operator cards.
I followed this link and several of the others. It sounds like persons over a certain age will be exempted. One would also hope that holders of CG certificates, either 6-pack or masters would be given reciprocity. Either of these is generally accepted in the rest of the US. It is all that is necessary for Great Lakes charter fishing or sail for hire. Masters is necessary for inspected. California claims their tag will be honored by other states etc. bla bla. It only seems proper that they ALSO accept everyone else's tags as well as the national and international standards. Anything less would be disingenuous and a tax. Otherwise, they need to call it a cruising permit. Somehow, I doubt that the CA tag will cut any slack in Mexico or the Med.
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Old 04-01-2015, 11:17   #94
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Re: responsibility

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I followed this link and several of the others. It sounds like persons over a certain age will be exempted. One would also hope that holders of CG certificates, either 6-pack or masters would be given reciprocity. Either of these is generally accepted in the rest of the US. It is all that is necessary for Great Lakes charter fishing or sail for hire. Masters is necessary for inspected. California claims their tag will be honored by other states etc. bla bla. It only seems proper that they ALSO accept everyone else's tags as well as the national and international standards. Anything less would be disingenuous and a tax. Otherwise, they need to call it a cruising permit. Somehow, I doubt that the CA tag will cut any slack in Mexico or the Med.
The card is phased in based on age starting with folks 20 years or younger in 2018, to everyone by 2025. There is a exemption for folks from out of state or those with coast guard issued license's.
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Old 04-01-2015, 13:46   #95
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Re: responsibility

It would be reasonable if California also honored courses approved by other states, and perhaps they will when the CVOC requirements phase in, and they have already said the requirements won't apply to short-term visitors as well as various licensed professional mariners.

There are some differences between the CVOC and regular land-based drivers' licenses, such as the fee being nominally for the education/test (and some states offer their classes/tests and boater ed cards for free), and the requirement is only imposed once and the card is good for life. So, maybe, instead of a duck, it's a goose or a turkey or such. Also, the states are not all saying that they have a right to control everyone who goes on the water -- there are various exceptions of people and vessel types that the boater ed laws don't apply to, whereas the states claim a right to license everyone who drives on a highway.

Most states that implement boater ed have refrained from using it as a revenue source, and instead have minimized the cost, since they want to encourage people to take the class, so as to actually improve safety. Statistics seem to show that people who have taken a class do have many fewer accidents, even if the class is a very basic, minimal on-line or classroom course. Of course, it could be that the sort of people who take classes are generally more prudent than some of those who don't.

If California follows the lead of other US states and the commercial providers in basing content on National Assn. of State Boating Law Administrators standards, then they'll likely have a classroom or on-line course with maybe about 8 sections, and a predominantly multiple-choice exam with questions such as,
"Where should fire extinguishers be stored on a boat?
__ Safe in a locked compartment
__ On deck exposed to the elements
__ Where they are readily accessible
__ In a zippered bag with the life jackets"
or
"Why are low head dams dangerous to small boats and paddlecraft?
__ Backwash can pin you and your boat indefinitely
__ The dam may not have any water on the other side
__ They are always well marked giving you false confidence
__ The roar of the water can confuse boat operators"

Don't expect questions specific to sailing (but the rules of the road subsection will mention sailboats), and do expect some specific to jet skis and water skiing... since those are some of the sorts of boaters that are best at crashing, killing, and mangling. And, the focus won't be on blue water or big boats.

Aside ... One little pet peeve of the courses for me is that they don't explain what it takes for be a "vessel engaged in fishing" qualified as a stand-on vessel (old language: privileged or right-of-way) vessel ... many will get the mistaken impression that casting a line from their My Little Larry the Cable Guy rod and reel gives them the same rights as a purse seiner or longliner.
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Old 04-01-2015, 17:48   #96
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Re: responsibility

I expect that there may be an additioanal fee for the testing in addition to the card price. Though I might be wrong. In reading the state law, they seem to be aiming at an on line test, either by the DBW or a third party website accessed by the DBW website. I expect some bright senator will make the license, a 5 year renewal at some future time. California loves taxes and fee's.

No it will not be much of a test, just basic safety and very basic navigation.
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Old 05-01-2015, 01:02   #97
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Re: responsibility

Yes, it will be a pretty easy test ... and maybe a quarter or a third of folks will fail to pass it the first go around. That may give folks some shivers.

If Cali does try to make boater ed a revenue source and require periodic renewals, it will be way out of synch with the other US states, will harm the goal of getting more people to take the class, and deservedly generate suspicion and anger in the boating community.

A reasonable compromise might be to leave the certification permanent for everyone except for Lake County deputy sheriffs, who might need frequent safety classes and refreshers.
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Old 05-01-2015, 01:12   #98
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Re: responsibility

"A reasonable compromise might be to leave the certification permanent for everyone except for Lake County deputy sheriffs, who might need frequent safety classes and refreshers."

Well, rgspact, thee was not the first to have this notion, nor are you likely to be the last, but I must say I support it...... Perhaps the Sheriff's Dept. will support you, and me, and the others......

[Sly expression not available with emoticons]

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Old 05-01-2015, 22:03   #99
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Re: responsibility

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Originally Posted by rgscpat View Post
Yes, it will be a pretty easy test ... and maybe a quarter or a third of folks will fail to pass it the first go around. That may give folks some shivers.

If Cali does try to make boater ed a revenue source and require periodic renewals, it will be way out of synch with the other US states, will harm the goal of getting more people to take the class, and deservedly generate suspicion and anger in the boating community.

A reasonable compromise might be to leave the certification permanent for everyone except for Lake County deputy sheriffs, who might need frequent safety classes and refreshers.
Lake county sheriff deputy totally fit the profile for the compiled top reasons for boat accidents.

http://www.uscgboating.org/assets/1/...ortRevised.pdf

The link shows the break down nationally for boating deaths, accidents by type & size of boat age group, alcohol, speed, power, recklessness, inattentiveness. Of particular note is that Aux Sailboats represent one of the smallest cuts. - So small as to be statistically insignificant. Requiring the entire boating community to take a test & PAY is punishment of the the entire senior class 'cause one kid was caught with a beer at the prom.

Also to consider is that in most states, the state does not run the test. They accept passing marks on exams by volunteers and other entities such as the CG AUX. Often there is no cost at all and the state never needed to create yet another bureaucracy with its perpetual costs including future retirements. They seem to be even better at spending other people's money in CA than most everywhere else.
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