Boaters Could See Registration Fee Increase

Registration fees for boats could go up with the extra money used for dredging, under proposed legislation in the NC Senate.

Senate Bill 58 would scrap the current universal fee of $15.00 a year, in favor of a fee based on the size of a boat.

If you have a boat less than 14 feet the fee would remain $15.00. That would increase to $25.00 for a boat 14 to less than 20 feet, $50.00 for 20 feet or more to less than 26, $100.00 for a boat 26 feet but less than 40, and $150.00 for a boat more than 40 feet in length.

Money generated from the bill would be earmarked to dredge inlets along the NC coast.

A group of marina owners and operators met in Oriental this month to talk to State Senator Norman Sanderson, a co-sponsor of the bill, about making some changes to it.

Many locals are afraid the fees would turn away tourists and discourage local boating altogether.

Sanderson told WITN he believes there has to be some drastic changes to the rate increase.