News Alert!!: Mohave County, AZ: New watercraft restrictions being proposed for the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge.

News Alert!!: Mohave County, AZ: New watercraft restrictions being proposed for the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge.

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service is again proposing new series of no wake and restricted zones throughout the backwaters of the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge in Mohave County, Arizona just a year after a controversial watercraft restriction, that proposed restrictions on recreational boating in the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge, failed to get any support and was withdrawn.

** Map (Pictured Above) of new watercraft restriction being proposed from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service: **

Under the new proposal, waters inaccessible to boaters will be designated as backwaters, prohibiting boaters from launching watercraft or operating personal watercraft in the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge areas, including Beal Lake, Pintail Slough, Lost Lake and Topock Bay.

The stipulation would prohibit towed recreational activities in these areas and prohibit kite-boarding and hydro-flight equipment in waters south of Interstate 40 near Topock, Arizona.

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service’s proposal would also remove restrictions on air-cooled outboard engines, while prohibiting the use of hovercraft within refuge waters.

** A draft CD of the new proposal was released to the public and can be viewed at the following website address: **

https://www.fws.gov/uploadedFiles/HavasuBoatingCD-Draft-July_2017.pdf

The public comment period is for 30 days, beginning Tuesday, August 1st, 2017 through Wednesday, August 30th, 2017.

To be part of the record, comments must be in writing to:

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Havasu National Wildlife Refuge,

Attn: Draft Recreational Boating CD Comments

317 Mesquite Avenue

Needles, California, 92363.

You can also email the United States Fish and Wildlife Service with your comments to: havasu_comments@fws.gov

In addition comments must be received on, or postmarked by, Wednesday, August 30th, 2017.

In 2016, a previous draft CD was released of a proposal watercraft restriction by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service resulted in public outcry against stricter proposals.

Crowd of people (Pictured Above) filled up the conference hall at the Avi Resort and Casino in Laughlin, Nevada on Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016 to speak out against the United States Fish and Wildlife Service proposed boating restrictions, including from local city, county, and state officials, including Needles Mayor Edward T. Paget, San Bernardino County Supervisors Robert Lovingood, Mohave County Supervisor Buster Johnson, United States Congressman Paul Cook, and United States Senators McCain and Flake.

United States Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake, both Arizona Republicans, filed an amendment to the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Bill designed to drive the United States Fish and Wildlife Service to drop proposed restrictions on recreational boating at Havasu National Wildlife Refuge.

“USFWS’s proposal to restrict recreational boating near Lake Havasu could devastate small businesses throughout the region that depend on the millions of people who visit every year to enjoy boating, water skiing, and other activities on the lake. The USFWS should rethink its proposal and listen to the concerns raised by the citizens of Mohave County whose lives and livelihoods depend on outdoor recreation,” said United States Senator John McCain of Arizona.

After a lot of public outcry and extension of the comment period, the proposed boating restrictions was withdrawn.

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service is saying that these new proposed restrictions will do little to obstruct recreational boating in the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge or on the Colorado River.

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service have not said yet if there will be any public meetings for the public to address their concerns on this new proposal.

 

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s