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It’s ‘Gs’ Gone Wild

You assume I mean Girls Gone Wild! Nope. The Gs I’m referencing don’t have to remove their tops to earn their “gone wild” title. They can just be themselves. They’re the “G”overnment bureaucrats in the Bureau of Reclamation. Yes, it’s Government Gone Wild!

The Bureau recently proposed rules designed to end boating and “return the shoreline of all Bureau-managed lakes and reservoirs to nature.” This will be accomplished by pulling up existing docks and mooring facilities and constructing a chain-link fence around the lake 150 feet from the shoreline. No, I’m not joking! In fact, it’s been reported that the Bureau is already preventing access to homes and water on some Bureau-managed lakes. One 80-year old couple on Cascade Lake returned home after a vacation to find a chain-link fence blocking them from accessing their house.

The Bureau manages properties, lakes and reservoirs in many states, but mostly in the West. Specifically, the Bureau has proposed a new rule on the use of Reclamation lands and water bodies which would prohibit everything from cabins to boat docks, including moorings, launch ramps, floating structures, moored vessels and business sites. Obviously, this will hurt recreational boaters, anglers, marinas, boat retailers, and service providers, as well as many adjacent support businesses like grocery stores, bait shops, gas stations, etc. The rule would prohibit new boat access ramps and docks and would not renew current leases when they expire. In other words, stop water access!

Now, this should make you gag! To justify the rule, the Bureau claims demand for use of Bureau land and water bodies for different kinds of activities has increased dramatically since the properties were developed for water supply, flood control, and hydropower over 100 years ago. This increase causes conflicts and confusion among user groups. And, as is so typical of “G” thinking (usually one fry short of a Happy Meal), rather than study other commonly accepted ways to resolve any user conflicts it’s just easier to end use of the lakes!

MRAA, NMMA and others frequently tell us the fight for water access is among the highest priorities for our industry and is a constant battle. I couldn’t agree more and this example brings it home once again.


6 comments on “It’s ‘Gs’ Gone Wild

  1. Bob Gonsalves

    For years now, the personal watercraft manufacturers warned the boating industry that it was only a matter of time before anti-boating special interest groups turned their sights on the general boating community. Where was the outrage when personal watercraft were being banned from the same lakes that allowed other motorized boats with like engines? There was none. The best advice I can give to the NMMA now is that they learn from the Personal Watercraft Industry Association and their affiliates who are battle tested and fairly successful overturning such actions.

  2. Larry Innis

    Actually, King George is looking pretty good these days. When this issue came to my attention, I couldn’t believe it was true. But i’m afraid it is true. MRAA has submitted comments strongly opposing the action of the Bureau of Reclamation on Cascade Lake, but also opposing the rule becasue it applies to all properties managed by the Bureau. What is even more scary is a statement made by a federal employee of the Army Corps of Engineers recently that once one federal agency does something like this, other agencies look closely and may follow suite. He wanted to know more.

  3. Wilson

    If what you say is true, this smacks of the biggest of big brother. Do the property owners have no roparian rights and if they do isn’t this a condemnation action without a hearing ? Suppose the water was your only ingrees and egress, would thay still take it ?

    When do we start the grass roots, telephone, e-mail and letter writing campaign.????…and how about some visits to area editorial boards ?

  4. Doug Reimel

    Well that is Government at its best. Cut your arm off so sometime in the future you won’t get a hang nail. I for one know I am to busy trying to build a business to employee more tax payers and don not spend enough time battleing the radical enviromentalist. They believe if nobody experiences nature no one can harm nature. We as a tax generating industry do not shout loud enough unless we shout together. Question: Will the U.S. Taxpayer ever be put on the endangered species list?

  5. Pete Peterson

    Another step in the wrong direction by government officials, who in the case in Florida want all marinas gone and condos built so they can enrich their tax cofers. Now the condos aren’t selling the marinas lay in waste as nothing is happening and the entire State is up in arms. I am beginning to think we live in a third world country where the government can take as much as they want and spend it their way. Change better start happening soon.

    Pete Peterson
    World Cat

  6. Wilson

    Mr. Peterson:

    Some of this folly is attributable to term limits sold to those of us in Florida as a way to keep legislators from getting too intrenched. Some did not realize that we all ( legislators included) learn from experience. Governemt is like a house of cards and one must make sure there are plenty of cards left to hold up the house before removing one…As is begining to become evident with the implimenttion of satorial campaign promises to reduce property taxes and insurance rates.

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