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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
As you've heard, last year's House Bill 201 became law on 1/1/2020 and now Georgia has the distinction of having the nation's most restrictive anchoring laws, stripping away the right to freely navigate on the waters the state holds in public trust. This impacts not only Georgia boaters but every boater, both domestic and international, who plans to navigate through Georgia waters.

HB201 was a complex and flawed hodge podge of regulations, but was sold in the House and the Senate at an absurdly high level of simplification, leaving out key components that were objectionable to boaters, and focusing instead on water quality and revitalization of a local shellfish industry.

So as we look to HB833 to remedy the wrongs of HB201, we must be able now to sell those points to our legislators under the gold dome of Atlanta. A core group of boating rights advocates have started a Georgia Anchoring Advocacy Fund to engage the services of a lobbyist to do exactly this. So far we have received commitments for financial support from:

America's Great Loop Cruisers' Association (AGLCA)
Cruisers' Net
DeFever Cruisers
Facebook Group Save Georgia's Anchorages
Marine Trawlers Owners Association (MTOA)
Sevens Seas Cruising Association (SSCA)
Waterway Guide
and many supporters without official affiliations, including several from non US cruisers!

This is every boater's fight. What is happening in Georgia can happen in your cruising waters. No amount is too small. Please consider supporting the fund at:

370 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Was livestreaming the bill as presented on the Senate floor this afternoon. Now onto the Governor for signature. Thanks to everyone in the cruising community for the support.

Here is our announcement on our FB Group: Save Georgia's Anchorages
The Georgia Senate has just passed HB 833, and the Bill now awaits the governor's signature.
As all of you know, HB833 essentially reverses the onerous anti boating provisions that were passed into law this past January. That bill caused widespread anger amongst cruising boaters and resulted in the formation of this grassroots group to fight it.
HB 833 removes the ability to require permits for all overnight anchoring, removes the requirement to keep records of pump outs, and perhaps most importantly, removes the requirement that boats not anchor within 1,000 feet of waterfront structures and within 300 feet of marinas.
HB833 changes those set-back distances to 150-feet from waterfront structures, 300-feet from marinas, and 500-feet from commercial shellfish beds for short-term anchoring, which is defined as anchoring in the same place for up to 14 cumulative nights per calendar year. Long term anchoring (over 14 days in the same place) will require a permit.
This was a major undertaking and it could NOT have happened without the support you gave the Save Georgia's Anchorages team who put in countless hours looking out for your interests.
What is especially important to remember is that SGA worked alongside and as an equal partner with other, more established groups - the AGLCA, NMMA, Waterway Guide, BoatUS and also Scott Draper, our lobbyist.
And let's not forget the contributions of Cruisers Net, the MTOA and SSCA in this effort. It was a helluva team and they got it done.
In particular however, the efforts of SGA members and co-founders James H. Newsome, Jack White, Ted Arisaka and Bob Keller were instrumental in getting 'er done. Someday, perhaps when I've had one beer too many, I'll tell some of the backroom stories about how hard these guys worked and the late hours they put in to protect our rights to anchor in GA.
But - and I mean this sincerely - when all is said and done, all of our work at the pointy end is worthless without the support of you, the boating public. We did the talking, but the State of Georgia was hearing you, listening to you speak through our words.
Thank you from all of us at SGA for your support.
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