Senate Staffers Hear Concerns About Ferry Regulations During Port Authority Meeting

New Bourbon Regional Port Authority chairman Ron Inman updated Matt Bain, U.S. Senator Josh Hawley’s district director, and Lesley Rone, U.S. Senator Roy Blunt’s Cape Girardeau field representative, on various frustrations the port authority and the Ste. Genevieve-Modoc Ferry deal with last week during the port authority’s board meeting.

During his ferry report on September 25, Inman told the visiting pair of senatorial aides about aggravations the ferry faces, especially with U.S. Coast Guard Subchapter M regulations compliance.

“This Sub M stuff is … they treat a little bitty boat just like it’s a great big tow boat,” Inman said. “Some of this stuff is absolutely ridiculous.”

The requirements go into effect July 1, 2020.

Inman said it will have cost the ferry between $15,000 and $20,000 to comply with the new regulations “by the time everything is said and done.” …

He said he thinks the regulations were made with only large operators in mind.

‘”Whoever sat in their office and came up with that language … I’m sure the big boat owners felt like it was the best way to go,” Inman said. “For the little boats like the ferry, they’re even requiring a second deck hand, which is absolutely ridiculous to have to have a second person sitting there, not doing anything.”

If the second deck hand requirement is enforced, it could create a financial hardship for the Ste. Genevieve-Modoc Ferry and other similar boats, Inman said.

“In fact, it would break the bank,” Inman said. “If they come along and say that, we might be able to run six or seven months out of the year.”

See complete story in the October 2 edition of the Herald.

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