The 2023 American Boating Congress (ABC) concluded yesterday in Washington, D.C., after three days of policy conversations, panel discussions, marine industry updates, conversations with members of Congress, and a day spent on Capitol Hill advocating on behalf of the recreational marine industry.
The NMMA and its industry partners, sponsors and co-hosts welcomed over 250 recreational boating and fishing stakeholders to D.C. to the annual advocacy event. Attendees heard from several members of Congress, many of whom are longtime champions of the boating industry and members of the bipartisan Congressional Boating Caucus. Attendees were at Capitol Hill on Wednesday where they met with lawmakers and staff to discuss policy issues impacting recreational boating and fishing.
Members of Congress took center stage on Wednesday and shared insight into some of the challenges federal lawmakers are tackling. Attendees engaged in discussions with Representatives Peter Stauber (R-MN-08) and Daniel Webster (R-FL-14), as well as Senators Kevin Cramer (R-ND) and Joe Manchin (D-WV).
NMMA presented Senator John Boozman (R-AR) with the Legislator of the Year Award. In addition to serving on the Congressional Boating Caucus, Senator Boozman continues to be an advocate for boaters and anglers, most recently co-sponsoring and introducing bills such as the Lake Access Keeping Economies Strong (LAKES) Act which will better fund the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and allow for the agency to retain and reinvest its recreation fees. He also championed America’s Outdoor Recreation Act, a first of its kind outdoor recreation legislative package that invests in public lands and waters.
During the speeches, members encouraged attendees to remember their voice matters in their home states. In order to drive forward the industry’s policy priorities and prevent harmful regulations, it is critical to connect with local legislators in state chambers and communicate the value of the outdoor recreation industry and its needs.
Thank you to the sponsors of the 2023 American Boating Congress:
- President’s Level: Brunswick, MarineMax, Yamaha
- Admiral’s Level: Correct Craft
- Captain’s Level: Beneteau Group, BoatUS, BRP, Dometic, Indmar, Informa Markets, Suzuki, Vision Marine, Yanmar/Vetus
- First Mate’s Level: Center for Sportfishing Policy, Malibu Boats , MRAA, Roswell Marine, SeaTow, Smoker Craft, Tiara Yachts, Torqeedo
- Purser’s Level: Boats Group, Chaparral Boats, Info-Link Technologies, Marine Concepts, Marine Industries, Assoc of South Florida, Midwest Industries, Northpoint Financial, Regulator Marine, Suntex Marinas, Viking Yachts, Voltsafe
ABC’s success is also dependent on co-hosts, including the American Sportfishing Association, Association of Marina Industries, Massachusetts Marine Trade Association, Michigan Boating Industries Association, MTA New Jersey, and the National Marine Lenders Association.