The Providence Working Waterfront Alliance applauds the General Assembly for the introduction of “The Rhode Island Working Waterfronts Protection Act” (H-5617 / S-0758).This legislation — modeled after Massachusetts’ “Designated Port Area” regulations — would empower the Coastal Resources Management Council (CRMC) to preserve and protect Rhode Island’s working waterfronts and water-dependent uses including commercial fishing, shipping, passenger transportation, boat building and repair, marinas, and other marine related businesses which must have access to the water to operate.

With ever-increasing pressure for residential and commercial development along our coast, Rhode Island’s working waterfronts are a threatened public resource. This legislation is sorely needed to protect critical statewide resources responsible for hundreds of millions of dollars in total economic impact, thousands of jobs, and vital energy resources for the Southern New England region.

We appreciate the leadership of Representatives David Caprio (D-Dist. 34, Narragansett, South Kingstown), Donald Lally Jr. (D-Dist. 33, Narragansett, South Kingstown, North Kingstown), John McCauley Jr. (D-Dist. 1, Providence), and Joseph Almeida (D-Dist. 12, Providence) in the House and Senators William Walaska (D-Dist. 30, Warwick) and Majority Leader Daniel Connors (D-Dist. 19, Cumberland, Lincoln) in the Senate, for introducing this much needed legislation.

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