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State Recreational Boating Safety Programs

Pursuant to 46 USCS § 13102, the State Recreational Boating Safety Program includes education, assistance, and enforcement activities conducted for maritime casualty prevention, reduction, and reporting for recreational boating. The federal Secretary of Transportation carries out a national recreational boating safety program.  The purpose of the program is to encourage greater participation and uniformity in state boating safety efforts and to permit states to assume a greater share of boating safety education, assistance, and enforcement activities.  The Secretary establishes guidelines and standards for the program.  The Secretary shall consider factors affecting recreational boating safety such as overcrowding and congestion of waterways because of the increasing number of recreational vessels operating on those waterways and their geographic distribution, the availability and geographic distribution of recreational boating facilities in and among applying States, and State marine casualty and fatality statistics for recreational vessels.  The Secretary shall consult with the Secretary of the Interior to minimize duplication of efforts to effect the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act of 1965 (16 U.S.C. 460l-4-460l-11), the Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act of 1950 (16 U.S.C. 777-777k), and with the guidelines developed under those Acts.  The Secretary shall maintain environmental standards consistent with the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972 (16 U.S.C. 1451-1464) and other laws and policies of the United States intended to safeguard the ecological and aesthetic quality of the waters and wetlands of the United States.  A State whose recreational boating safety program has been approved by the Secretary is eligible for funds to assist that state in developing, carrying out, and financing its program.

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