The resolution below, is for the use of harbor communities as they discuss Coalition support and membership.
- Whereas, there are approximately 120 federally authorized small Great Lakes harbors; and
- Whereas, the federal government is responsible for maintaining boater access to these harbors through adequate dredging and maintenance of navigation infrastructure (hereinafter referred to as maintenance); and
- Whereas, small harbors perform other valuable functions such as ports of refuge during inclement weather, ports for U.S. Coast Guard rescue stations, ports for law enforcement, ports for commercial fleets, ports for Great Lakes research vessels, and ferry terminals; and
- Whereas, many of the 120 federally authorized small harbors in the Great Lakes require regular maintenance because of natural sedimentation, low water levels, storm events, and littoral drift, among other factors; and
- Whereas, longstanding federal policy prevents the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from allocating funds for the maintenance of small harbors in its operation and maintenance budget for the Great Lakes, thus forcing these harbors to seek Congressional assistance or “earmarks” to secure funds for maintenance; and
- Whereas, this inefficient, inequitable system has resulted in maintenance backlogs that have hindered, or in some cases totally blocked access to Great Lakes small harbors, causing significant economic loss and increased risk to human health and safety; and
- Whereas, small harbors in the Great Lakes have not, to date, had an organization through which to unite and speak with one voice to address concerns about maintenance and other shared interests to federal and state agencies;
- Therefore be it resolved that [municipality] supports and commits to being a member of the Great Lakes Small Harbors Coalition; and
- Be it further resolved that [municipality] urges the Great Lakes Small Harbors Coalition to advocate for a more equitable, sustainable, needs-based system to allocate funds for adequate maintenance of small Great Lakes harbors.