This is a question we’ve been asking ourselves for the last several weeks as we await the ANR’s final decision on changes to the Use of Public Water Rules regarding wake boats. This is also a question many of you — our supporters — have been asking us for nearly a month. We don’t have insight into where ANR is in their rulemaking process; we don’t know what to tell you other than, like you, we await the ANR’s final rule.
We anticipate this news may come soon. This is based on the public comment period — which included two public hearings and written comments — having ended August 10. After review of the public input, DEC made its final confidential recommendations to the ANR. Several weeks have passed since ANR Secretary Julie Moore received those recommendations.
What does such a long information drought indicate? Is it good news or bad?
In our October 5 Newsletter, we included our group’s September 25 letter to Secretary Moore. In what was a compelling letter we:
- Summarized our group’s efforts during the last 2 ½ years,
- Explained our rationale for a stronger, more appropriate rule than the DEC’s draft 500-foot distance from shore, and
- Described support we have received from various quarters for a stronger rule that includes our group’s recommended minimum 1,000-foot distance from shore for wake boat activity. In addition to referencing the wealth of accumulated scientific data (some of which only became available after we filed our March 2022 petition to the ANR), RWVL pointed out that over 80% of the 759 written comments received by the ANR supported a strong wake boat rule, i.e., a minimum 1,000-ft distance from shore (41%) or a statewide total ban (41%) on all such boat activity on inland lakes.
We are hopeful that the above points will persuade Secretary Moore to strengthen the rule beyond the ANR/DEC’s original draft 500-foot recommended distance. In the meantime, rest assured that the moment we are informed of the ANR’s final rule, we will share it with you.
Until then, we ask that you, our supporters, continue submitting your Letters to the Editor and commentary pieces to the local and state news media.
Keep the faith!