Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Continuous Cruisers to bear the increase in licence fees?

Anyone else here been to any of these meetings? If not, I hope you will go to one of the ones coming up. We don't want BW to think no-one's interested, do we?

I went to Watford yesterday, and I must say I came away with a positive feel on balance. Simon Salem in the chair, Robin Evans alongside and Sally Ash in attendance, plus about 16(?) boaters. Many from IWA Lee and Stort Branch.

Interestingly, most of the subjects raised on Saturday at the SOW strategy meeting were raised by users. I feel certain SOW is right on the) pulse.

From BW's side the most interesting thing was Mr Evans' statement that they think that DCLG (Dept for Communities and Local Government) is the best option instead of DEFRA. Although the consultation document says BW must raise extra money from boaters, discussions are still ongoing about trying to get the government to cough up for all users from different pockets long-term. So the fight against accepting the increases should go on.

Two issues were raised that Mr Evans was quick to say had been talked about in recent consultations, but anything and everything is back on the table.

* Licence calculations by area instead of length could be revisited.
Strong agreement on this idea. (Maybe no wide boaters there?)

* Increased licence fees for continuous cruisers (and by implication for continuous moorers).
On the ground that continuous moorers/cruisers take up all the visitor moorings on the GU, James Griffin(?) from Wyvern Shipping raised the latter point. He claimed that the necessary shortfall could be mostly raised from this source.

Mr Evans said this had been shouted down 3 years ago by all the user groups, but if there is a change of feeling about this, I think it is something they would like to do.

If you are a genuine continuous cruiser, make sure you object to this idea when you send in your consultation return. Otherwise the 9% over inflation figure could be loaded big time onto continuous cruisers.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please leave your comment on the blog, not on Facebook. If you don't want your comment published add "please do not publish". We reserve the right not to publish comments and will not publish Anonymous Posts.