Saturday, December 15, 2007
A soldier in Iraq sent the following message To Linda Colontrelle, the local Vero Beach lady who told VBPS member Laddie Kruiten about the program to send gift boxes to our brave soldiers. Laddie and her helpers mailed 85 boxes that were prepared by our members. These boxes will all be in soldier's hands before Christmas.
"Mrs. C., I wanted to write you a short note and let you know that the packages from Vero Beach Power Squadron have made their way to Baghdad. So far I've received over 40 boxes from people in your community. I distributed all of them to the soldiers in my unit and they love them. They particularly like the ones with the Christmas decorations in them. I will work on some thank you notes but please pass the word to the people that sent packages and let them know that the soldiers of the 1st Cavalry Division are very appreciative of their support. Support from home means so much, especially 13 months into the deployment. Take care and talk to you soon.
1LT Mark Erwin"
I know you are as proud of what we did as I am.
Bob McCurdy, Executive Officer
Vero Beach Power Squadron
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
BoatU.S. Foundation is now accepting applications for their 2008 Clean Water Grants Program. The Clean Water Grants program funds projects that encourage boaters to learn to love their waterways. They are looking for education projects that help boaters understand and appreciate their local boating habitat, as well as learn hands-on boating strategies that will keep the water and local habitat healthy and accessible for future boaters --- creative and innovative projects that teach boaters to reduce their impact on the waters they use for boating.
BoatUS Foundation will also grant funds to develop projects that help stop the spread of invasive species on local waterways.
Each year, the BoatU.S. Foundation awards local nonprofit volunteer organizations up to $4,000 for the promotion of clean boating education. Over the past 6 years the Foundation has awarded almost $100,000 to local community organizations, yacht clubs, flotillas and many of our squadrons! Topics can range from petroleum pollution prevention to pumpout education to keeping trash out of our waterways.
Think about the environmental issues that affect your local waterway.
Are there positive steps boaters can take to make the water cleaner?
How can they reduce their environmental impact?
The USPS Environmental Committee encourages your squadron to apply for a BoatU.S. Foundation Clean Water Grant: BoatU.S. has a grant writing guide and sample application on their website, and don’t hesitate to contact the USPS EnvCom for assistance.
The deadline for the 2008 Clean Water Grant Funding Cycle is February 1, 2008. The grants will be awarded in late April 2008.
Link to application: http://www.boatus.com/foundation/cleanwater/grants/
Saturday, November 17, 2007
United States Power Squadrons and the Boy Scouts of America join forces to educate recreational boaters
USPS Marketing/ Public Relations Committee
There are some interesting parallels in the founding stories of two prominent national organizations. The United States Power Squadrons and the Boy Scouts of America planted the seeds of their common mission of boater safety education in the same year, less than one hundred miles apart and after ninety years have found the rewards of a beneficial cooperation. The Power Squadrons grew out of an idea fostered by Roger Upton of the Boston Yacht Club in Marblehead, Massachusetts. In 1912 he successfully formed a club division to properly educate the owners of the newly popular recreational power boats. The Sea Scout movement in America grew out of the ideas of Arthur A. Cary of Waltham, Massachusetts, inspired by England’s Lord Baden-Powell’s Boy Scout philosophy. In 1912 he introduced his Sea Scouts to the operation of the schooner, “Pioneer”. His subsequent pamphlet, Cruising For Sea Scouts, became the organization’s first manual. From those beginnings both organizations grew to become the major sources of boater education in the United States.
After recently signing a memorandum of agreement, both organizations are prospering from the new relationship. This linkage was promoted by the Power Squadrons’ Chief Commander Ernest G. Marshburn, SN, an Eagle Scout. The importance of this fact to both organizations was emphasized earlier this year at the Power Squadrons’ Annual Meeting in Jacksonville, Florida. The Boy Scouts of America honored Chief Marshburn’s life long public service by honoring him with one of their highest adult recognitions, The Distinguished Eagle Scout Award. Its recipients, all of whom are
Eagle Scouts, include a rarified list of national leaders which includes President Gerald Ford, astronaut Neil Armstrong world class adventurer Steve Fossett, Senator Bill Bradley, and Defense Sec. Robert Gates
Events throughout the nation have reinforced this relationship with Power Squadrons assisting Boy Scout units. An example is the Change of Watch for Mountaineer Power Squadron on the West Virginia/ Pennsylvania border. National Sea Scout Boatswain Douglas Bowman was part of the festivities as District Commander C. Douglas Sewell, SN inducted the new squadron commander, Raymond C. Derk, AP. Cdr Derk is the Sea Scout Skipper of Doug Bowen’s Sea Scout ship.
Other signs of the continuing relationship were seen at the Boy Scouts of America National Meeting in Atlanta. Chief Commander Marshburn was a participant and met with two major youth leaders. The first was David George, President of the National Venturing Division, B.S.A. newest co-ed program. The second was Evan Chafee president and distinguished Vigil Honor Member of Scouting’s national honor society, the Order of the Arrow. Both young men are members of the Sea Scout Ship Del Mar. Their Sea Scout Skipper, Michael Stewart, is a member of Balboa Power Squadron of Orange County, California, the sponsor of the Sea Scout Ship. Both Evan and Dave are members of Balboa Power Squadron.
Perhaps the most interesting indicator of this new relationship is the presence of National Venturing Division President, David George and National Sea Scout Boatswain, Douglas Bowman on the National Membership Committee of The United States Power Squadrons. Chair of the committee, Rear Commander Roberta L. Dougherty, AP, reports that this new relationship is highly valuable to both organizations and the boating public. She emphasizes that Power Squadrons throughout the country should strongly consider “…affiliating or sponsoring Sea Scout units or working with Scouting’s teenage Venturing Crews.” The mutual support of these organizations helps each other to prosper and thereby betters boating safety education for the entire nation.
A resident of Punta Gorda, FL, Dr. Scotten and his wife Ann, who is a staff commander for the USPS Instructor Development Committee, are both members of the Peace River Power Squadron, where Greg served as commander and Ann is currently the Education Officer. In younger days Greg was very active in the Boy Scouts of America as a Gold Palm Eagle Scout, a Vigil Member of the Order of the Arrow, a member of the National Camping School Staff and Camp Director of the Junior Leader Training Camp for The Greater New York Councils at Ten Mile River.
USPS Marketing/ Public Relations Committee
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
As a result of Judge Crown’s decision upholding the current state statute, many local governments around Florida which had anchoring ordinances may not be enforcing them and are looking to the state for guidance in the form of a uniform anchoring regulation.
The controversy began when Marco Island enacted a city ordinance restricting recreational boaters to a maximum 12-hour anchoring period when located within 300 feet of a seawall, and a maximum six-day anchoring period anywhere beyond that distance.
Marco Island’s City Council, which has a month to appeal the ruling, at this time plans to contest the court decision and is planning another meeting December 3 to review the matter.
Stf/C Richard E. Gercak, AP
Govt./Partner Relations Committee
United States Power Squadrons
Tuesday, October 09, 2007
United States Power Squadrons and US SAILING Sign Memo of Understanding to Share Educational Resources
For Immediate Release
Contacts: United States Power Squadrons
Bob Sweet – 508-495-4300
Move Will Help More Boaters Gain Access to Boating Education, Safety Training
September 10, 2007 — United States Power Squadrons (USPS) and US SAILING have signed a memorandum of understanding that outlines how the two organizations can share educational resources, including instructional programs and course materials. The move allows each organization—each of which is a leader in the field of recreational boating education—to tap into the other organization's particular expertise; this type of collaboration is highly encouraged by the United States Coast Guard, in the hope of ensuring a higher level of competency and safety amongst boaters in the United States.
USPS will complement its classroom instruction with US SAILING courses in on-the-water powerboat skill instruction and demonstration. US SAILING will now be able to incorporate the extensive advanced navigational course materials developed by USPS into its training programs.
"This is a great partnership that will extend the reach of both organizations,” said Rich Jepsen, CEO of OCSC Sailing (Berkeley, Calif.) who chairs US SAILING's Training Committee. "Each organization has outreach to different audiences in the boating world, and sharing our resources will give more boaters access to the training and knowledge they need to make going out on the water more enjoyable—and ultimately more safe."
According to USPS National Educational Officer Dick Kyle, “We are looking to enrich our programs with US SAILING’s strong experience with on-the-water training. This expertise complements our classroom courses for our new Boat Operator Certification Program and advanced sail endorsements included in our USPS University."
The USPS Boat Operator Certification program has been created to recognize the skill level of boaters and recognize their knowledge in much the same way as the Coast Guard license indicates professional expertise. Until now, there was little most recreational boaters could do to gain such recognition. To achieve each of the four levels (Inland, Coastal, Advanced Coastal, and Offshore) the boater must complete a set of USPS courses, attend a series of seminars, and demonstrate skills, some on-the-water. It is basic on-the-water skills that USPS has looked to the US Sailing program for its inland certification.
One of the key US SAILING courses USPS will offer to its members is the Safe Powerboat Handling Course. This two-day, hands-on, on-the-water course was originally developed to serve US SAILING constituents who used powerboats but lacked formal training in handling these types of craft. The original target audience for this program included sailing instructors, coaches, and race committee personnel who needed a high level of proficiency in powerboat handling in order to perform their jobs on the water. The course has since become known as valuable training for any individual who wants to learn how to safely operate a powerboat. The National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) has approved the course, and an increasing number of U.S. states are recognizing that the program meets their boating safety education requirements.
For more than 20 years on-the-water powerboat training has been a part of the US SAILING's educational offerings, initially incorporated into courses used to train sailing instructors and later developed into separate powerboat-handling courses. The courses are administered by US Powerboating, a department under US SAILING’s Education Division and organized to directly address the educational needs of power boat owners and operators in the US.
The Power Squadrons' advanced navigational materials are the key USPS resources US SAILING will now be able to incorporate into its renowned Keelboat Certification Series, which provides high standards of competency for sailors, sailing instructors, and sailing schools to improve safety and enjoyment for thousands of sailors every year. Qualified sailing schools and instructors teach sailors of all experience levels proper boat handling and seamanship skills, as well as the proper theory that is a crucial part of a sailor’s education. Making USPS navigation training materials available to US SAILING Keelboat Certification schools will improve its already robust line-up of navigation training.
United States Power Squadrons is known worldwide for its quality navigation programs from inland and coastal to offshore using both electronics and celestial tools. USPS has even trained navigators for the Navy during times of war. USPS has become a leader working with industry to understand and influence emerging navigation technologies thus assuring training in the latest techniques, equipment, and software.
US SAILING offers sailing and powerboat courses through participating clubs, schools, and community programs. These courses highlight on-the-water training for students and instructor candidates, starting at the entry level and progressing into racing, cruising, and offshore passagemaking. US SAILING's Certification Series has established the definitive national standards for sailing and on-the-water powerboat instruction in keelboats, small sailboats, and sport and cruising powerboats.
USPS University Boat Operator Certification programs tap into their navigation courses as well as classroom and hands-on work in seamanship, boat handling, weather, marine electrical and electronics, engine and marine mechanical systems maintenance, cruise planning and a wide range of seminars on shipboard gear selection and use. The USPS Seminars are generally available to the public across the country, often conveniently offered in marine stores, yacht clubs, and marinas. Programs are offered through the USPS network of 450 squadrons located virtually everywhere you find boaters. USPS also offers National Association of State Boating Law Administrators approved public boating safety programs in the classroom and on-line. These courses have been a mainstay of USPS support to boaters since 1914.
About US SAILING
The United States Sailing Association (US SAILING) is the national governing body for sailing. Founded in 1897 and headquartered in Portsmouth, Rhode Island, the organization provides leadership for the sport of sailing in the United States. US SAILING offers training and education programs for instructors and race officials, supports a wide range of sailing organizations and communities, issues offshore rating certificates, and provides administration and oversight of competitive sailing across the country, including National Championships and the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Sailing Teams. For more information, please visit http://www.ussailing.org/.
About the United States Power Squadrons
USPS, in its nearly 100-year history, has been the premier recreational boating education organization offering basic boating and a strong program of navigation that has even been used to train navy navigators in time of war. Today, USPS offers the broadest range of boating courses and seminars available for recreational boaters of all types, and provides a rallying point for those interested in boats to meet, learn, and provide services to fellow boaters. USPS also participates in a co-operative charting program with NOAA helping to update navigation charts, and provides complementary vessel safety inspections in cooperation with the Coast Guard. For more information, please visit http://www.usps.org/.
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
Fellow Members -
Sam Insalaco and District 7 have undertaken their own excellent grassroots response to the Water Ballast issue in asking that recreational boats be exempted from this onerous EPA requirement. Since I couldn't have said it better myself, I'm forwarding this to you for your immediate action.
Be sure to respond to your legislators as an individual, concerned boater, NOT as a representative of USPS. Take action quickly and also forward this to all recreational boaters you know.
R/C Bill Husted, SN
National Government Partner Relations Committee
As you recall, last year a U.S. District Court ruling nullified EPA regulation 40 under the Clean Water Act exempting effluent discharge incidental to the normal operation of vessels. The ruling is the result of a lawsuit to halt the introduction of invasive species from ballast water from commercial ships. Unfortunately the ruling did not differentiate between vessels and includes storm water (rain), gray water, and bilge water discharge from recreational boats as well. Under the court order, the EPA must establish new regulations and a permit process to enable the normal discharge from recreational boats by September 2008. The permit process and enforcement would be worked out between the EPA and the states. This is a significant problem for both manufacturers and the public. There are 13 million registered boats in the
To fight this ruling and its results, the National Boating Foundation (NBF) joined with National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) in the BoatBlue Coalition. The Coalition has informed Congress of the problem and the harm it would do to the marine industry and the boating public. As a result, H.R. 2550, the Recreational Boating Act of 2007, was introduced in the House in May and has 37 cosponsors. An identical companion bill, S. 2067, has been introduced in the Senate by Senator Mel Martinez of
These bills, if passed, will codify the exemption for recreational boats that has existed under the Clean Water Act for many years. The timing is critical as the bills are actively being reviewed and assessed in both Houses.
While USPS and other groups are actively supporting this effort organizationally, their support is viewed as “industry lobbying” by many legislators and as such has a diminished impact. Recent discussions with NMMA and the Personal Watercraft Industry Association (PWIA) strongly recommended that a public ground swell of individual boaters directly contacting their elected representatives is needed to ensure their passage.
Please write your U.S. Senators and U.S. Representatives to ask them to pass H.R. 2550 in the House and S. 2067 in the Senate to preserve the exemption for recreational boaters from the Clean Water Act NPDES (National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System) permit rules.
Letters may be sent by US mail. Fax, or electronically through your elected representatives’ web sites. Also consider calling their offices and asking for their support directly. You can find our officials at this link http://www.boatblue.org/takeaction.aspx. A sample letter is given below for your use.
SAMPLE LETTER TO FAX OR E-MAIL:
Dear (Senator or Representative)
As a recreational boater, I wish to bring to your attention a matter of serious concern. A recent court decision has made it very likely that every recreational boat owner in the nation will be required to obtain a permit in order to operate their boat. There are nearly 18 million recreational boats in operation and about 72 million boaters nationwide.
Not only do boaters support a $37 billion a year boating industry, they contribute significantly to other outdoor recreational opportunities such as angling and hunting, both of which are multi-billion dollar industries that are of considerable cultural significance in
Recently, a federal judge invalidated a long-standing regulation exempting the normal discharges of recreational boats from the Clean Water Act. Although unintended, the consequence of the decision is that every registered recreational boat owner in the country could be subjected to sweeping new regulations and permit requirements for normal discharges, which includes bilge water, deck runoff, engine cooling water, and others.
We urge you to enact H.R. 2550 or S. 2067 (indicate 2550 or 2067 depending on whether you are writing to a Representative or Senator). The Recreational Boating Act of 2007 that will codify the legal exemption for recreational boats that has existed in law for 34 years. Otherwise, boaters could face new yearly fees and bureaucratic red tape associated with getting a permit, both of which will drive down participation in boating and outdoor recreation, reduce tax revenues for environmental conservation initiatives nationwide, and cause considerable economic harm to the local communities that rely on boating and outdoor recreation. Federal and state governments would be required to develop new programs to implement these regulations, which would be very costly to taxpayers and deplete scarce agency resources.
The exemption for recreational boats was enacted 34 years ago for good reason—these regulations in the Clean Water Act are meant for supertankers and cruise ships—not your weekend boater on our country's waterways.
We urge you to act quickly on this legislative remedy which will make the exemption for recreational boats in the Clean Water Act permanent.
John Q. Boater
City, State, Zip
Monday, September 17, 2007
The following posters took 1st place in their respective age categories:Ages 6 – 8 --
Ages 9 -11 --
Ages 12 – 14 --
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Marketing/Public Relations Awards Video
Youth Poster Awards Video
Marketing/Public Relations Awards Photos
Membership Growth Awards Photos
P/D/C Lou Loth
P/Stf/C Trudy Brown
Cdr William Smith
Saturday, September 01, 2007
Your planning should include reacquainting yourself with the U.S. Coast Guard’s “America’s Waterway Watch” program and our own USPS program, “Waterway Awareness.“ Your preparation, particularly for USPS members in the Gulf states and along the eastern seaboard, should also include a hurricane evacuation plan for you, your family and your boat.
Focus on the month of September to familiarize yourself with the many possible threats to you and your loved ones. Most important, plan significant steps you can take to minimize those potential dangers. You can take immediate action to ensure your safety by availing yourself of a most worthwhile online resource, www.ready.gov. A handy Emergency Supply Kit is also available for downloading.
Take the time to draft your plan – or update it if you already have one. The time to seek solutions to a devastating emergency is NOT when the emergency presents itself. A good precautionary start is reviewing www.ready.gov. Do it today.
This is a timely reminder from your Homeland Security team of the Government and Partner Relations Committee. Contact R/C William E. Husted, SN, if you’d like further information.
We worked all summer, mostly recaulking the wooden decks. I myself was a Good Humor man who never sold any ice cream but gave it away while down at the boat every day. Once I took a fall overboard in my regalia which didn’t fare too well in the salt water, particularly the white hat and coin changer. Needless to say, I was fired from this job after the initial two-week accounting period. Instead of being rewarded with commissions, I wound up owing them money.
Finally, the motley crew of four 20-somethings set out from the Babylon Y.C. on their “voyage of a lifetime.” A short time afterward, the first entry was made in the log, “Engine failed in the Fire Island Inlet.” This was the first of many ominous entries that would be made. What could one expect from the old tub with a deck that was still leaking, a compass that was 30 degrees off, and no VHF radio aboard? This of course was all compounded by, I hate to admit, an ocean-inexperienced crew who’d had only bay-sailing races under its belt.
To minimize slippage we had only one leeboard that we had to haul up on a halyard and transfer to the other side of the vessel with every tack. Not exactly an
It took us two months to reach
There are many other stories to tell but let’s fast forward to the grand finale. The “Wooden Shoe” sunk about 100 miles off
Sunday, August 12, 2007
Seventeen-year-old American Canyon resident Mike Brantley has a yen to sail. Thanks to the Jolly Roger Program, he will spend plenty of time on the water this summer.
The program is a side project of the Vallejo-based Carquinez Sail & Power Squadron, one of several Bay Area squadrons branching off from the largest national boat education organization in the country. The United States Power Squadrons teach the basics of boating, navigation, safety and boating regulations. The local chapter of the organization boasts approximately 90 members.
For more of this story, click here.
The article was written & published by the Napa Valley Register in Napa, CA
The National Planning Committee has conducted various surveys with EXPO attendees, with D/Cs and D/Planning Chairs, as well as directly with current and former members. A decline in effective leadership was of great concern to many. Squadron Committees on Nominations often have difficulty finding enthused leaders to fill bridge positions. Recycling of bridge members has become commonplace, as is filling bridge positions with inexperienced members. With a declining membership our pool of good leaders has continued to dwindle.
Good leaders increase morale and inspire while instilling in their members a strong desire to emulate past successes and forge new ones. A new Leadership Development Workshop was developed and used successfully in District 32 by D/C Herb Shaw, JN. This new LDW focuses on seeking and training selected members in the principles and actions of good to great leadership. The Leadership Development Committee (LDC) helped in reviewing the material. This results-orientated workshop is aimed at increasing squadron membership by developing, sustaining, and nurturing the leaders of USPS for today and tomorrow.
The first “Train the Trainer” workshop was held near
A grant from the Century Fund was awarded to get the program started by paying for travel and lodging for the four trainers and all materials for district attendees. Districts and squadrons are being asked to bear the expense of their attendees.
D/C Arthur Kimber, SN; DMin, Cdr, D14, Hyannis, MA, 2006 Chapman winner, Educator, Senior Manager, Public and Non-profit programs
P/R/C Glenn Daughtridge, AP; D/27, Rocky Mount Squadron, North Carolina, Member, Benefits Committee, Keynote speaker and Trainer
D/C Robert Landeros, SN; PhD, D9, Kalamazoo Squadron, Michigan, Member, Instructor Development Committee, Professor of Management, Western Michigan University
Stf/C Herb Shaw, JN; MBA, D32, Beaverton Squadron, Oregon, Planning Committee, General Manager, GE Co., CEO of several publicly trades companies, successful Venture Capitalist, lecturer-U of Oregon, Workshop developer
D/C Arthur Kimber, SN; DMin, Cdr, D14, Hyannis, MA, 2006 Chapman winner, Educator, Senior Manager, Public and Non-profit programs
Tuesday, July 31, 2007
- The success of this event depends on individuals like you.
- USPS boaters can reach areas not covered by the typical volunteers.
- Trash removed from the shore saves marine life.
- All marine debris comes from human activity.
- Be a steward in your community and meet new people (potential new members?).
- You will have a lot of fun!
Squadrons and districts may participate as a group, or individual members may register as volunteers. Registration is now open. The state and international coordinators are listed on the EnvCom web page.
Ocean Conservancy's International Coastal Cleanup isn't just about pollution cleanup — it's also about pollution prevention. The event focuses on educating and empowering people to become a part of the marine debris solution.
What makes the International Coastal Cleanup unique is its data collection component. Volunteers record specific types of marine debris being found, allowing Ocean Conservancy to compile, analyze and track this data year-by-year and make discoveries about the behaviors that cause the debris.
The final information is used to educate the public, business, industry, and government officials about the problem - understanding the problem is the key to finding long-lasting solutions.
For more information on this event, media kits, and promotional materials, check out the Cleanup Home Page: http://www.oceanconservancy.org/site/PageServer?pagename=press_icc
USPS EnvCom will recognize squadrons at the 2008 Annual Meeting for the following:
- Largest Piece of Debris Recovered
- Most Unusual Debris Recovered
- Most Disgusting Debris Recovered
- Funniest Debris Recovered
- Most Participants (includes members, family, friends, pets – you document the connection – we count the participant)
1) one recognition for actual quantity
2) one recognition using percentage of active & family members
Members, officers, family, friends, and pets connected to any USPS squadron are eligible to participate. The recognition is not subject to any federal, state or local laws and regulations and is not prohibited by law or regulation. Participants agree to abide by the terms of these official rules and by the decisions of the EnvCom, which are final and binding on all matters pertaining to the recognition. The EnvCom reserves the right to disqualify any participant that it determines, in its sole discretion, is ineligible to participate, but can’t think of a particular example where that might occur at this time. EnvCom will select the judging panel. While EnvCom will make every effort to be fair, those squadrons providing significant amounts of hype, PR, and otherwise bringing recognition to the organization will most likely influence our decisions. Submission may be from any squadron member who is willing to take the time to fill out the form.
To qualify for recognition, the entry form on the EnvCom web page with accompanying documentation must be submitted to the EnvCom Chair no later than 30 November, 2007. Submissions may be electronic: (mailto:JLHamilton@MarathonOil.com, fax (713-296-4516), or by mail (
Monday, July 23, 2007
Safe boating is the responsibility of the boat operator, explains Patti Keister, co-owner of Holiday Marine. Sadly, in 2006 only 29% of operators & passengers involved in a boating accident were reported to be wearing a life jacket at the time of the accident according to
Holiday Marine is the 1st Retail boating dealer in
Media questions contact:
Harris Chain Sail & Power Squadron
Don & Patti Keister
LEESBURG, FL 34748
Sunday, July 22, 2007
Article from the Today Show
The segment was recorded by NBC during a Boat Smart Class provided by Tres Rios Power Squadron (D/13) at Seal Beach Yacht Club,
Darrell Allison United States Power Squadrons
Marketing/Public Relations Committee22 July 2007
(email@example.com - 714-893-4455
Thursday, July 19, 2007
At the BSA Annual Meeting last Friday in
Congratulations to both these fine young Americans on their leadership appointments. They make USPS proud!
R/C Roberta L. Dougherty, AP
United States Power Squadrons
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
Friday, July 13, 2007
Today's boaters have a new tool to make their time on the water both more safe and more fun. The United States Power Squadrons'® (USPS®) Cooperative Charting Committee has made this possible by providing a Boating Guide to America that is available to everyone. The Boating Guide to America covers virtually every harbor and port-of-call in America and is accessible at www.usps.org. The content includes charts, photographs, port facilities, emergency services, things to do while in port, restaurants, anchorages, history and much more. This new tool employs the modern technology of the Internet, in partnership with Maptech® that provides the computer facilities and the software support, to supply current information for our boating pleasure which the users, boaters, keep relevant and up to date. This innovation is the latest in a long history of educational and community service activities that are the tradition of USPS and the Cooperative Charting Committee.
The Cooperative Charting Program, begun in 1963, is now administered cooperatively by the NOAA Office of Coast Survey and the national United States Power Squadrons Cooperative Charting Committee. The program is a major public service of USPS and it has been estimated that each year USPS contributes a value of service to the U.S. Government of $15 to $20 million. This program has been said to be the most effective user-participation program in all of the Federal services. A Memorandum of Agreement establishing the program has been updated several times and assures the program will continue to contribute to boating safety into the future.
Through Cooperative Charting, USPS members supply information to the NOAA Office of Coast Survey which publishes over 1000 nautical charts. This information contributes to the production of accurate and up to date charts and related publications. A recent joint innovation has led to improvements in reporting accuracy and utility of user provided information through an Internet website provided by the NOAA Office of Coast Survey using software developed by USPS.
Through the Cooperative Charting Program USPS members provide a variety of services in support of the nation's charting authorities. They supply information leading to corrections to nautical charts, small craft charts, and the Coast Pilot publications. USPS members also supply data from depth and range line surveys and inspections of aids to navigation. An Adopt-A-Chart subprogram allows individual squadrons to assume responsibility to keep information on a chart covering their local boating area up to date. Over the years, since the program's inception, it is estimated that the number of reports submitted by USPS members totals in the tens to hundreds of thousands.
Coast Survey acts as a clearing house for USPS boating related reports such as missing or unreliable aids to navigation which are maintained by the USCG, cable crossings which are monitored by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and corrections to other agencies' charts and maps such as the Defense Mapping Agency, Corps of Engineers, and others. In past years other parts of NOAA have requested similar services. One former activity allowed USPS members to assist with the preservation of geodetic control stations in the National Geodetic Reference System.
In addition to saving taxpayer dollars, USPS members save lives and property as well as further boating safety through the Cooperative Charting Program's efforts to improve the quality of the nation’s charts. USPS members act as volunteer field observers for NOAA and they are uniquely suited to this role because of the outstanding education and training they receive through the USPS educational program. Many of their reports are of a critical nature requiring immediate distribution through the Coast Guard's broadcasts and publication in the Local Notice to Mariners. Without these observations by USPS, many hazards would go undetected until they cause a tragic nautical mishap. For example, there are some areas, frequented by recreational boaters, that are only surveyed every 30 years by NOAA's Office of Coast Survey. The Cooperative Charting Program is a highly successful, continuing, public service effort dedicated to activities for the advancement of safety on the water for both the boating public and USPS members.
J. Robert Baechle - US Power Squadrons Marketing/PR Committee
On May 5, 2007, in conjunction with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), United States Power Squadrons'® (USPS)® District 5 conducted a Cooperative Charting Workshop at the Atlantic Marine Center in Norfolk, VA. Classes covered various Cooperative Charting programs including depth surveys, range line surveys, Coast Pilot book updates, nautical chart updates, and small craft facility updates.
The Workshop featured depth surveys. Highlights were the availability of computers to permit participants to experience the use of the latest programs, such as Maptech's® Chart Navigator to create depth survey routes and Depth Wiz and CCWeb, to transfer files and to analyze data. In addition, small boats were available to permit the participants to get hands-on, on-the-water, training and experience with the latest equipment for conducting depth surveys and NOAA's survey launch was available to demonstrate their equipment at work.
The forty attendees were organized into five groups for participation in the lectures and demonstrations. The day began at 0745 and concluded at 1615. District five's Steve Leishman gave the presentations on submitting Small Craft Facilities, the Coastal Pilot, and Nautical Chart update reports. Bob Beltz spoke about survey route creation with Chart Navigator and Dan Patke demonstrated the transfer of data between the PC and the GPS. Boats for the on-the-water demonstrations were provided by the ODonnells and the Uries.
District Five has been holding Cooperative Charting Workshops for 31 years. This Year's Workshop was highly effective and could serve as a model for other Cooperative Charting Workshops both in terms of its content and its format.
J. Robert Baechle - US Power Squadrons Marketing/PR Committee
Photos courtesy of P/R/C S. Patricia Governale, SN
Thursday, June 28, 2007
Monday, June 04, 2007
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY
High Frequency (HF) Radio Broadcasts of Marine Weather Forecasts and Warnings
AGENCY: Coast Guard, DHS.
ACTION: Notice; request for public comments.
SUMMARY: The Coast Guard is soliciting public comment on the need to continue providing high frequency (HF) radio broadcasts of weather forecasts and warnings. Public comment is necessary in order to assess the demand for the HF radio broadcasts of weather forecasts in each of three forms: (1) Radiofacsimile; (2) voice; and, (3) Simplex Teletype Over Radio (SITOR), also known as Narrow Band Direct Printing (NBDP). The infrastructure necessary to provide these services has exceeded its life expectancy; the equipment is no longer manufactured, repairs are difficult to accomplish, and spare parts generally are not available. Because of the very significant costs involved to continue these specific HF radio services, the Coast Guard requires information on the extent to which these services are used by the public and what alternative services are being used or are available to obtain weather forecasts and warnings.
DATES: Comments and related material must reach the Docket Management Facility on or before August 24, 2007.
ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by Coast Guard docket number USCG–2007–27656 to the Docket Management Facility at the U.S. Department of Transportation. To avoid duplication, please use only one of the following methods: (1) Web Site: http://dms.dot.gov (2) Mail: Docket Management Facility,
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: If you have questions on this notice, please contact Mr. Russell S. Levin, Spectrum Management Division (CG– 622),
Request for Comments We encourage you to participate by submitting comments. All comments received will be posted, without change, to http://dms.dot.gov and will include any personal information you have provided. We have an agreement with the Department of Transportation (DOT) to use the Docket Management Facility. Please see DOT's ''Privacy Act'' paragraph below.
Submitting comments: If you submit a comment, please include your name and address, identify the docket number for this notice (USCG–2007–27656) and give the reason for each comment. You may submit your comments by electronic means, mail, fax, or delivery to the Docket Management Facility at the address under ADDRESSES; but please submit your comments by only one means. If you submit them by mail or delivery, submit them in an unbound format, no larger than 81⁄2 by 11 inches, suitable for copying and electronic filing. If you submit them by mail and would like to know that they reached the Facility, please enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard or envelope. We will consider all comments received during the comment period.
Viewing comments and documents: To view comments, go to http:// dms.dot.gov at any time, click on ''Simple Search,'' enter the last five digits of the docket number for this notice, and click on ''Search.'' You may also visit the Docket Management Facility in room PL–401 on the Plaza level of the
Privacy Act: Anyone can search the electronic form of all comments received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review the Department of Transportation's Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477), or you may visit http://dms.dot.gov/.
Background and Purpose The Coast Guard broadcasts the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Weather Service (NWS) weather forecasts and warnings using 24 high frequency (HF) radio transmitters (transmitting on frequencies between 3 and 30 MHz) located at seven Coast Guard communications stations in the United States and Guam. The range of these HF radio transmissions is dependent upon operating frequency, time of day and atmospheric conditions, and can vary from only short distances to several thousand miles. There are three types of HF radio broadcasts currently provided:
(1) Voice broadcasts that transmit a synthesized voice to announce the forecasts);
(2) radiofacsimile, also known as ''radiofax'' or ''HF Fax'' broadcasts, that transmit graphic weather maps and other graphic images over HF radio (maps are received using a dedicated radiofax receiver or a single sideband shortwave receiver connected to an external facsimile recorder or a personal computer equipped with a radiofax interface and application software); and,
(3) Simplex Teletype Over Radio (SITOR) broadcasts also known as Narrow Band Direct Printing (NBDP). The 24 HF transmitters employed to transmit weather forecasts and warnings are not, because of their age, providing the reliability the Coast Guard expects from its radio transmitters. These particular transmitters are no longer manufactured and replacement parts generally are not available, making it difficult, if not impossible, to repair them. If the HF weather broadcasts are to continue, the infrastructure necessary for the broadcasts must be replaced. Significant costs will be incurred to replace the requisite transmitters and associated infrastructure. Before seeking funds for this undertaking, the Coast Guard must gather evidence relating to how frequently, and under what circumstances, the maritime community uses the various types of HF radio weather broadcasts. In addition, it would be helpful to learn about current and future needs of the maritime community with regard to receiving weather forecasts and warnings over HF radio, and what alternatives are being used or might become available.
Questions: The following are questions related to Coast Guard HF radio broadcasts on which we seek your comments. It would be helpful if commenters would answer the question as specifically as possible, and then provide explanations, if any, for the responses.
(1) What is your position in the maritime community? (Please be as specific as possible, e.g., captain of 600′ oil tanker, 1st mate on 500 unit containership, owner/operator of 45′ cruising sailboat, fleet manager of a 27 vessel shipping company, yacht delivery captain, etc.)
(2) What are your primary sources for obtaining marine weather forecasts? (For example, Inmarsat-C/SafetyNet, USCG HF radio broadcasts, USCG medium frequency (MF) Radio Broadcasts, USCG very high frequency (VHF) radio broadcasts, NOAA Weather Radio, NAVTEX, shoreside Internet, radio/ television, commercial service/system, etc.)
(3) Do you use Coast Guard HF radio voice broadcasts to receive marine weather forecasts? (Yes or No) If yes, how often do you use Coast Guard HF voice broadcasts and how critical are they to your safety and operation as compared to the other sources you listed in your response to Question 2?
(4) Do you use Coast Guard HF radiofax broadcasts to receive marine weather forecasts? (Yes or No) If yes, how often do you use Coast Guard HF radiofax broadcasts and how critical are they to your safety and operation as compared to the other sources you listed in your response to Question 2?
(5) Do you use Coast Guard HF radio Simplex Teletype over Radio (SITOR) (also known as Narrow Band Direct printing (NBDP)) to receive marine weather forecasts? (Yes or No) If yes, how often do you use Coast Guard SITOR radio broadcasts and how critical are they to your safety and operation as compared to the other sources you listed in your response to Question 2?
(6) What alternative source(s) for obtaining marine weather forecasts would you pursue if Coast Guard HF broadcasts were no longer available? How would you rate the alternative source(s) in terms of (a) user cost and (b) usefulness of the information as compared to the Coast Guard HF broadcast it replaces?
(7) Would the loss of Coast Guard HF marine weather broadcasts affect you? Please explain.
(8) How far seaward does your vessel primarily operate? (For example, coastal (0–25 nautical miles (nm) seaward); offshore (25–200 nm seaward); or, high seas (more than 200 nm seaward.) In what geographic area(s) do you generally operate your vessel? (For example, mid-Atlantic, New
As noted previously, comments regarding these questions, and any other pertinent matters brought to our attention during the comment period, will be taken into account in our future actions regarding the issues raised by these questions.
Dated: April 18, 2007.
C.S. Johnson, JR.,
Acting Assistant Commandant for Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Information Technology
[FR Doc. E7–7945 Filed 4–25–07; 8:45 am]