Saturday, December 29, 2007

Make Room in Your Wallet

In part because of its rising boating-related fatality rate, Florida is poised to make boater ID cards mandatory for anyone who takes the helm.

Currently, all Florida boaters under 21 must carry an ID card, which signifies they have taken a boating safety course. But now, citing statistics from other states that show a positive correlation between mandatory safety courses and lowered fatality rates, the state's Boating Advisory Council has proposed a plan that would raise the required age in five-year increments over the next 11 years. If enacted in 2008, the legislation would apply to all boaters by 2020.

Capt. Richard Moore, the state's boating-law administrator, insists that the boater ID card is not a license. It merely reflects that the boater has taken a safety course, and once you have a card, it's good for life.

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