Transportation/Recreation

CITIZEN VOICES®

Boat fees for search and rescue

Jan 16, 2018

HB 1794, proposed by Rep. Jonathan Manley, would implement a $1 fee on rentals of canoes, kayaks, jet skis and other small watercraft, with proceeds going to the state’s search and rescue fund. It is one of several proposals for increasing cash flow to the search and rescue fund being considered in the Legislature this year. Read more about this issue

Do you think a $1 fee should be charged against canoe, kayak and other small watercraft rentals, with proceeds going to the search and rescue fund?

Discussion held on Citizens Count NH website and Facebook page December 26, 2017

201 citizens responded140 citizens were opposed to $1 boat fees to fund search and rescue46 citizens were in favor of $1 boat rental fees to fund search and rescue15 citizens said other

What Participants Said

No: 140 people were against charging a $1 fee for small watercraft rentals, with proceeds going to the search and rescue fund.

  •  “No… Why should all have to pay for a few? Those who get rescued should pay unless they had no fault.”
  • “No… Seems a bit unfair to target just small watercraft.  They are certainly not the only [ones] getting lost.  What about ATVs, snowmobiles, hikers, and cross country skiers?”
  • “No… Could you ask for donations instead of making it mandatory?”

Yes: 46 people were in favor of charging a $1 fee for small watercraft rentals, with proceeds going to the search and rescue fund.

  • “Yes! NH Fish & Game is self funded and fees for hunting and fishing licenses should not go towards search and rescue.”
  • “Since the fee already applies to other motorized rentals I think adding the fee to non-motorized and expanding it to cover jetskis, etc. is a reasonable way to help fund an underfunded agency for a very important and essential function.”
  • “I think it is a good idea. Every little bit helps.”

Other: 15 people commented on related questions and issues instead. 
These included:

  • Search and rescue funding issues: “When people refuse to pay for it, or can't, or whatever, they end up eating the cost because a lawsuit would be even more expensive.”
  • Related bills: “NH has a proposed bill in the 2018 session for registration of canoes and kayaks as well.”
  • Alternative proposals: “How about a litter fee?”

*Editor selection of actual participant quotes.

Read the full Facebook discussion of this question

Click here for details on our methodology

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Related Bill

HB 1794 (2018)
Bill Status: Killed in the House
Hearing date: Jan 16, 2018

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