C-PORT Conference Grand Success


‘Capitol View of the Marine Assistance Industry’ Grand Success


C-PORT, Conference of Professional Operators for Response Towing, held its Annual Conference and Membership Meeting January 25- January 27, 2010 at Arlington, VA.  Tina Cardone, C-PORT Executive Director remarks, “Holding the Conference in the Washington DC area allowed us the opportunity host many government officials.  We were privileged to welcome both the Vice Commandant, US Coast Guard, Vice Admiral David Pekoske to present the Keynote Address and Commandant, US Coast Guard, Admiral Thad Allen as our guest speaker during the C-PORT Awards Banquet.”

Topics discussed encompassed US Coast Guard regulations and SAR (Search and Rescue) policy; NSARC (National Search and Rescue Committee) and how C-PORT membership and the Coast Guard can benefit.  The membership and guests gained insight into how regulations are formed and developed through the presentations by the panel comprised of those Coast Guard officers and civilians tasked with those duties.  Capt. Russell Proctor, Office Chief, USCG Operating and Environmental Standards, acted as moderator for the panel.

The Search and Rescue (SAR) policy discussion was lead by Capt. David McBride, Chief, USCG Office of Search and Rescue.  This panel, similar in make up to the Regulatory panel, responded to questions from the marine assistance operators regarding the recently revised Search and Rescue (SAR) Addendum.  It was announced that the newly revised Partnership Agreement between the US Coast Guard and C-PORT is near ratification.  Terry Hill, outgoing C-PORT Chairman, signed the document on behalf of C-PORT during the Conference.  McBride is taking the document back to Coast Guard Headquarters for final signatures.

While the marine assistance industry is regulated by the Coast Guard, other government agencies affect their businesses.  The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) presented information regarding discharge regulations and studies and NASBLA (National Association of State Boating Law Administrators) commented on their BOAT training program and the further development of the relationship between the entities.

C-PORT elected the 2010 Board of Directors during the Membership Meeting portion of the Conference.  Cardone announced the 2010 Officers as:  Chris Shaffner, Chairman; T.J. Buhite, Vice Chairman; Ethan Maass, Secretary; and Steve Winkler, Treasurer.  Ethan Maass and Steve Winkler gained re-election this year.  In addition to the Executive Officers, the 2010 Board of Directors include returning directors John Andrews, Joe Frohnhoefer, Charlie Meyer (re-elected at this conference), and Roger Slade.  Newly elected to the Board of Directors are Chris (Mac) McCarthy, Scott Collins and Phil Delano.  C-PORT also announced and accepted a new C-PORT Regional Chapter representing the Florida Keys.  Kevin Freestone, chairman of that chapter, represents that group as a director on the 2010 C-PORT Board of Directors.

C-PORT was founded in 1985 to act as a liaison between the marine assistance industry and public agencies and organizations involved with boating safety, marine assistance, marine salvage and other marine-related operations.  The association was created in part to afford a means of cooperation with the government in matters of national concern; to provide an objective, self-regulating body for the marine assistance industry; and to promote, through legislative, regulatory, and governmental initiatives, the maintenance and expansion of the marine assistance industry.  For more information, contact C-PORT at (954) 261-2012 or visit www.cport.us.







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