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Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 7:45 AM Reply   
So we are fighting the Oregon State Marine Board that recently enacted rules to ban Wake Enhancing Devices on a 17 mile stretch of a PUBLIC RIVER (Willamette River). This is some of the best riding water in the area and country. Many videos and shoots in national wakeboard magazines have been filmed in this area. It all comes down to a select few rich people got the ear of the governor and want their own private backyards on the river. There have been public hearings that 10 to 1 people have opposed this and they still did it. If you have a similar story let us know or any ideas to help repeal it. This will eventually effect everyone as this gives them the ability to set precedent and start using this around the country....
If you have any interest in paying attention to this topic or helping us out here is a link to our local forum that goes over it.... lots of reading, but you might start paying attention...
http://www.pdxwakesnow.com/viewforum.php?f=20
Old    Bazel (bazel)      Join Date: Oct 2001       10-23-2008, 8:32 AM Reply   
So if it is not a "No Wake Zone" are they going to penalize cruisers that throw massive rollers? What is the difference? I would be asking those sort of questions. If the issue is wake size the only way to prevent it is with "No Wake". If it is simply wakeboarding it could get interesting.
Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 8:57 AM Reply   
yeah that is the funny thing... I know it is a lot to read, but they are not restricting larger crusiers, not restricting barges, anything except wakeboard boats with wake enhancing devices. They are covering up as an erosion thing, but it is truely a very FEW wealthy homeowners on the water don't want the traffic and noise since it is dominated wakeboarders. Most of the people that live on this stretch own wakeboard boats too, but there is not enough awareness on the topic yet to get them involved. The Marine Board has gone out of their way to keep it hush hush.
Old    Ozark King (onthewatermo)      Join Date: Jan 2008       10-23-2008, 9:25 AM Reply   
If they are allowing cruisers but not wakeboats that is an equal protection/14th amendment constitutional issue and you need to find an attorney worth his/her weight in ballast to take it up in the courts...wish I lived in Oregon.
Old    Paul (psudy)      Join Date: Dec 2003       10-23-2008, 9:30 AM Reply   
So let me get this straight. They won't allow wake enhancing devices, but there are barges, and I assume very large boats cruising up and down it throwing even larger wakes? Thats a load of crap.
Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 9:33 AM Reply   
Thanks Andy... These are the the things we need to start discussing our next options...
Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 9:34 AM Reply   
Paul,
Yes.....
Old    Timothy (timmy)      Join Date: Jul 2001       10-23-2008, 9:37 AM Reply   
Do wakeboarders typically play music on their tower speakers in this area?
Old    Paul (psudy)      Join Date: Dec 2003       10-23-2008, 9:38 AM Reply   
I would do as Andy says for sure.
Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 9:48 AM Reply   
Tim,
Like every group there are some bad seeds that play loud music in the area. We try to educate folks not to around houses, but that is really the core issue here. They have been complaining about noise and traffic since wakeboarding and tower speakers became popular, but there are no laws against it, so they got smart and picked an issue like erosion. Since Oregon is so "green" they got people to latch onto it and run with it. The river is super healthy.. not a single test shows any erosion from wakeboard boats....

(Message edited by tyler97217 on October 23, 2008)
Old    tj (tj_in_kc)      Join Date: Jan 2008       10-23-2008, 10:33 AM Reply   
Hey Diggs,

I have been living in this environment. I live on a smallish private lake in Kansas City.

We have no ballast and no wedge rules.

Since you are operating on public water you may be able to fight this successfully. Is this a the city or state level? city ordinance or state law???

what is the penalty for getting caught?

on my private lake people just use the devices and ballast all the time, never been caught yet...

good luck to ya, i'd think they have better things to worry about than that. many water patrol up in that area?
Old    Stanfield (stanfield)      Join Date: Mar 2004       10-23-2008, 10:34 AM Reply   
Honestly, I can't really blame them and this is coming from a rider. If I owned super expensive riverfront property and had to listen to every wannabe gangsters BS musical selections all day, I'd be pissed too. Personally, I think the trend of the super high end, super loud tower speaker systems will be the downfall of wakeboarding and will start bringing out the law more and more. They do way more harm than good on any body of water where people have paid a premium for the waterfront land. I quit running tower speakers years ago for this very reason, now I just keep it in the boat.

Good luck, I'm sure it will be an uphill battle.
Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 10:41 AM Reply   
tj
The Oregon State Marine Board is elected by the Govenor so it is state level. No word on penalties for those that are caught. Obviously it will be tough to enforce, but the real issue is the precedent established to allow it to spread.
Stanfield,
I agree it is a tower speaker issue and I think behind closed doors the select few that are in favor of this law would admit it, but they are not getting traction from law enforcement, so they are using erosion as an excuse. We met with them to try and help educate and teach people about stereo volumes, dock damage, etc on the river, but was unsuccesful.
Old    AtTheLake (bmartin)      Join Date: Jan 2007       10-23-2008, 10:53 AM Reply   
Sounds like a tough fight ahead since it seems it was already passed. Maybe this will serve as a notice to those dropping the big coin to have the loudest sound on the water.

I suspect the law will be able to get picked apart if you have the right legal strategy and the motivation to fight it. For example, cruisers have drinkable water storage, heads, and other heavy accessories and how can the same device on one boat be legal on one boat but not another. In the mean time, I would start thinking about how I could heavily accessorize my boat: oversized gas tanks, very heavy anchors, giant coolers, maybe go retro with sand filled bean bags for seating. I'm sure there are tons of other ideas.
Old    Timothy (timmy)      Join Date: Jul 2001       10-23-2008, 10:59 AM Reply   
It is a sad situation for all parties involved. Unfortunately for the wakeboarders...the people with the money (landowners) usually have more pull.

Perhaps you will see more people switching the boats they ride behind, you could always start riding behind a cruiser (or a barge) that throws the big wake without the need for wake enhancing devices.

I am similar to Stanfield, I never put tower speakers on my boat, as I know how annoying they can be when you are chilling on your deck enjoying being outside.
Old    derek (to_blind)      Join Date: Mar 2007       10-23-2008, 11:07 AM Reply   
IMO, ppl. cruising around blaring the tower speakers are just like the douche bags who put a $5000 stereo system in a $1000 car and annoy the whole neighborhood. ( aka myself when I was 16 and naive) I have tower speakers myself, but I don't crank them to obnoxious levels and float around. Our crew def. likes music, but we also like to converse, share trick tips,take in the beauty of our lake etc... There are a few tickets you can get for having a car stereo too loud, maybe that should apply to boats as well. In closing, I have been known to be obnoxious as much as the next guy, but I think the difference is I know when I am being disrespectful and when to cut it out.
Old    Timothy (timmy)      Join Date: Jul 2001       10-23-2008, 11:09 AM Reply   
I was the guy with the annoying loud car stereo when I was 18 too. Now I am old and still enjoy loud music but not at others' expense.
Old    Daren Jacobson (dtown)      Join Date: Mar 2008       10-23-2008, 11:25 AM Reply   
The city has noise ordinances for public areas. Oregon law states that it is illegal to overload a boat beyond its cost guard recommendation placard. Why don't they just enforcing the rules already in place?

I equate this to purchasing a house next to train tracks or a highway, or near an airport, then complaining about the noise. This is a public waterway. The down side for homeowners is that they have to put up with obnoxious music and crowds on 16-24 warm weekend days per year... The up side is they get a near private river setting the rest of the year... I wish I had that problem!
Old    Ozark King (onthewatermo)      Join Date: Jan 2008       10-23-2008, 11:40 AM Reply   
Bottom Line: we know how we feel and the other side has taken action so lets do the same. I just emailed the Oregon chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union to see if they would want to challenge and represent. Will keep you posted.
Old    AtTheLake (bmartin)      Join Date: Jan 2007       10-23-2008, 11:43 AM Reply   
Daren - The railroad airport analogy isn't quite the same. 5 or 10 years ago there weren't the sound systems in boats as there are today. Also you can wakeboard without making the 'noise' people are complaining about, but you can't really separate the sound from the planes and trains.
Old    julianne (jujube)      Join Date: Aug 2008       10-23-2008, 11:44 AM Reply   
sounds like an "up-hill battle"; persistence pays --- good luck Oregon.
Old    Timothy (timmy)      Join Date: Jul 2001       10-23-2008, 11:47 AM Reply   
I wish you the best of luck in preserving your riding spot!
Old    Kyle (Slingshot) (kylenautique)      Join Date: May 2008       10-23-2008, 11:48 AM Reply   
I would love to go out and take photos of the docks of the people complaining about wakeboarding. I would bet it would be old crappy wood docks falling apart with a old ski boat tied up to it. I can understand the home owners not liking the noise of tower speakers, but that would be like complaining of noise living next to a football stadium. You live on a water playground, and thats what people do there. Even water tests show that wakeboard boats don't throw a wake any harder at the shore then the police boat up there. Its not a errosion issue, its a home owners vs wakeboarding issue. That is a awesome place to ride, and it sucks people are trying to take it away. If it gets taken away, it needs to become a "no wake zone" so everyone is screwed, not just wakeboarders.
Old    Brett Yates (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       10-23-2008, 11:52 AM Reply   
I know it would be better to get this figured out legally but just get a boat that drains the ballast from the bottom of the boat. Then they can't see you emptying the ballast. Calabria and MB might be a really nice option there.
Old    Billy (woreout)      Join Date: Aug 2006       10-23-2008, 12:01 PM Reply   
That is such BS !! It would be such a "grey area" as far as, how "big" is the wake and what makes a wake "big" for each individual boat. Hell what is their definition of "big" for that matter? I would think it would be very hard to enforce.
I hope it doesnt pass, because they can use that to continue on to every body of water in the country.

Maybe they will ban hurricanes here because they cause a lot of damage to shorelines.
Good Luck with the fight !! May the force be with you.
Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 12:16 PM Reply   
Couple things to stay on focus here:
-This is a 17 mile stretch of the river that has homes all up and down the river. There is 10 to 1 opposition against the rules. That includes 10 to 1 homeowners on the river. This is just a small few, so it is not fair to say all the homeowners.
-While there might be some root relationship to noise from Tower Speakers the fight we are battling is Wake Enhancing Devices. Not Stereos, so hopefully you can comment on that issue instead of stereos, but I agree with your comments.
-The rule/law has passed. Now it is fighting to repeal it.

The big thing to pay attention to here is it will set precedent around the country. Pay attention in your community and stay on top of it as the marine board has been searching and not finding precedent, so they did it anyway with the Governor's blessing even though his consitituency is 90% against it.
Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 12:17 PM Reply   
As many know in Oregon we get a lot of rain in the winter and the rivers run much higher and much swifter. That is when Oregon sees its erosion, not when the water level drops 10' lower in its banks and a 1' wake hits it....
Old    Dave (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       10-23-2008, 12:23 PM Reply   
MC drains their ballast out of the bottom too.
As long as you have automated ballast that drains out of the bottom of your boat and automatic wedge - there is no way they can catch you.

If you have big sacks all over your boat - you might consider upgrading.

I think paying for automated ballast would be a lot cheaper and more fun than paying a lawyer.

The law is stupid.

You may also try to meet with some of the local government people who make these decisions.

They serve you too. It is usually pretty easy to set up a meeting with them (it is their job to meet with their voters). You should try to meet with them personally to get a feel of how hard-core they are about supporting this law.

The meeting will give you a better idea about what you are up against.

If the rep is reasonable, you may be able to get them to change their mind - but don't expect it.
Old    Brett W (brettw)      Join Date: Jul 2007       10-23-2008, 12:26 PM Reply   
It's too bad they just can't enforce noise ordinance laws everywhere instead. Nobody should be blasting their music so loud that others all over the water can hear it.
Old    JT (peachman)      Join Date: May 2004       10-23-2008, 12:28 PM Reply   
Diggs,

If the Governor is involved, it sounds like a payola deal to me, either that or there is a land owner on the river that is a buddy with the Governor kissing his/her @ss... If you have 90% against such legislation, this is the only way something like this could get passed. You will need to start a petition and go door to door for support and signatures. You will easily be able to find out who is for it and aganist it. Good luck, JT
Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 1:00 PM Reply   
Dave
We have met with the Marine Board as a educated group and came up with agreeable proposals on both sides, but then it was determined to be similar to what JT said and one of them has a connection or friendship with the govenor. They abandoned all of those rules and stated in the open that they just want to get this off their plate cause they have been dealing with it for 7 years....
some back door stuff going on...
Old    Ozark King (onthewatermo)      Join Date: Jan 2008       10-23-2008, 1:18 PM Reply   
...and that's when you back door them back and file suit in federal court. Still waiting to hear from the ACLU.
Old    John Gardner (roverjohn)      Join Date: Dec 2007       10-23-2008, 1:39 PM Reply   
Be careful what you wish for. It would quite easy to move the no wake zone away from the shore until everyone is stuck in a narrow strip in the center of the river or just call all wake enhancing devices an impediment to navigation which they are. I've owned and operated inboard boats for at least thirty years. I've never seen any opposition to me operating one until the last few years so blaming old or rich people doesn't wash. Inconsiderate wakeboarders are the problem, they are not victims. Blasting around near shorelines with slammed boats, so we can grab the butter, and having stereos blaring a constant stream of F words is not a right and as a group we have done nothing to get people, or other boaters, to like us. Show me a fishing, sailing, pontooning, or kayaking group that doesn't support this ban and I will be shocked. There are tens of times more of them than there are of us so I find the idea that 90% of the population is against this ban laughable.
Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 2:13 PM Reply   
Andy thanks!

John,
Lets back up a bit. We formed a group and worked with the Marine Board and Homeowners over 1 year ago. My comment is that 90% of the homeonwners on the river are against this, not the population. Why? Because they have wakeboats and want to use the river. The few select homeowners do not want to shut the river down, they are skiers. They want to have their own private waterway to ski and barefoot as well as cut back on noise. We agreed to help solve the issues, but their theory is that if the wake enhancing devices go away, so will everyone and find another place. The old adage of "not in my backyard" but anyone elses is fine.
This topic goes much deeper than this post and has been going on for a long time. It just passed though. We are not a bunch of punk wakeboarders on this committee. Ages from 30 yrs to 70 yrs old and all professionals. Not trying to be mean, but read all the data provided on the link before we make assumptions. We agree with what you are saying, but according to them that is not the issue.
Old    John Gardner (roverjohn)      Join Date: Dec 2007       10-23-2008, 2:33 PM Reply   
Than you are making my argument for me. To think that somehow 10% of the landowners who just happen to be skiers are able to block the use of the river for the other 90% of landowners, all of whom own wakeboats, is absurd. It is a public waterway used by many people who don't live there. Wake boats are being singled out because people don't like the behavior of their operators. Erosion is just the first argument they have come up with. Even if this ban gets overturned there are plenty of way to effect another ban if the general population asks for it. Even other wakeboarders don't want to have to ride around other wakeboats because the water is chopped up. How to you think a canoeist feels?
Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 2:54 PM Reply   
John
I am not asking you how you think other people might feel about it. I am telling you that we understand the issues at hand. We are trying to create an environment where people can co-exist.
Your theory about the 10% landowners for and 90% opposed is not absurd. It is public record with public statements. The Marine Board is an appointed board by the Governor. They do not have to follow public sentiment. Obviously, or we would not be in this situation. I completely understand your side of the arguement or playing devils advocate, but the process was not fair. Let me know if you have something that might help us on this issue instead of contradicting the facts. Again, not trying to be mean, but we are looking for help from people around the country and not looking to argue with anyone on line...
Thanks

(Message edited by tyler97217 on October 23, 2008)
Old    Bruce Mac (brucemac)      Join Date: Dec 2005       10-23-2008, 3:17 PM Reply   
from a legal perspective, what specifically would it take to reverse the decision? a state-wide initiative on the ballot?

sounds like PDX's next season is going to have a whole lot more "safety checks" for boats with towers. i'm very sorry for you guys/gals and i hope you can turn it around. hopefully someone here will have some good advice.
Old    Ryan Lacefield (26lacefield)      Join Date: Aug 2006       10-23-2008, 3:46 PM Reply   
I'd split my boat at the top deck and hull. take about 2,000 lbs of concreat and pore it in the hull of the boat. hahaha they'd never know.
Old    Bill K (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       10-23-2008, 4:14 PM Reply   
I can only imagine the upgrades you'd be doing to the trailer too, Ryan.

The first time someone logs in here & posts about being stopped for a safety check on the Willamette, and says they were able to drain the tanks without the cops seeing what was going on...... well, I'll have to laugh.
Old    DeeCee (jaybee)      Join Date: Aug 2007       10-23-2008, 5:37 PM Reply   
"The first time someone logs in here & posts about being stopped for a safety check on the Willamette, and says they were able to drain the tanks without the cops seeing what was going on...... well, I'll have to laugh."

i agree, but how would the marine patrol be able to prove they were full unless you have visible gauges. On my nautique they were visible but on my mastercraft with the vdig, unless they were familiar with it i doubt they would know to ask me to scroll through everything to see if it had ballast gauges.
Old    DeeCee (jaybee)      Join Date: Aug 2007       10-23-2008, 5:38 PM Reply   
Oh yeah and a very good read!!
Old    pdxWAKE.com            10-23-2008, 6:08 PM Reply   
Yeah there are lots of boats that drain out the bottom and drain fast. The Law enforcement is against the ruling and already said they can't police it, but that doesn't make the process right or the future precedent it has created.

Bruce Mac,
There are some steps to repeal a rule and we have a meeting next week to discuss strategy, so more to come.
Old    Stanfield (stanfield)      Join Date: Mar 2004       10-24-2008, 5:29 AM Reply   
Diggs, if nothing else, keep us posted. I have no useful advice whatsoever as I ride a river that is dominated by boarders and is a designated flood zone so no houses can be built = nobody to bother. I'm interested to hear how it turns out though, 17 miles is a big stretch to basically shut down.
Old    Brant Williams (kitewake)      Join Date: Jul 2007       12-09-2008, 5:50 PM Reply   
Ever see that Sopranos Episode where Tony Parks the cruiser with the huge stereo and plays obnoxious music to 'motivate' a property owner into letting him out of a deal?

If only you could find out who specifically was pushing for these rules. Everyone knows that it was probably someone blasting their stereo that pissed them off. If you exhaust all chances of repeal, it would be funny to get a HUGE stereo system...and anchor a day cruiser with the sound pointed towards the complainers.

Hidden agenda stuff is BS. They should have simply passed an ordinance against sound systems. Since they passed a BS law under the bogus guise of stopping erosion...let em have with the stereo. Something really obnoxious like 50-Cent InDaClub or Work It by Missy Elliot all day and all night at about 10KWs.

What do you have to lose.....

(Message edited by kitewake on December 09, 2008)

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