DLNR: Improving boating access

(Press Release) — With the completion of the Garapan Fishing Base boat ramp and parking, Department of Lands and Natural Resources Secretary Anthony Benavente says that improving boating access contributes to strengthening fisheries and managing precious resources.

“The Garapan Fishing Base is an important community resource for recreational boaters and fishermen. Improving our boating infrastructure has always been a priority to ensure safety, cleanliness and ease of access,” Benavente said.

Project Manager Vicente Camacho for the Boating Access Program shared that funding from the Sport Fish Restoration focuses on improving access to complement trade and food sourcing.

“The fishing base project came about through the CNMI Marine Conservation Plan. We emphasized that in order to maintain healthy marine fisheries and the management of our bases, providing a dedicated area to our boaters would go a long way in our conservation efforts both in and out of the base or any marina,” Camacho said.

Expressing the need for continued improvements, Gov. Ralph D.L.G. Torres added that boating access for our community is not only economically important but culturally ingrained.

“Recreation fishing and boating provide sustenance to a large part of our community and cooperative management has allowed us to improve conservation strategies. In conserving our essential fish habitats and safeguarding our boaters, this way of life can continue on to future generations,” Governor Torres said.

Camacho further noted that the boating access program extends to the renovation of the Rota West harbor marina which is being completed in phases.

“The replacement of the Floating Dock System will be divided into three phases which began in FY 2016 until FY 2018. In the previous year, maintenance dredging at Sugar Dock was completed with approximately 2,300 cubic yard of sand relocated. These maintenance services are performed on Saipan, Tinian and Rota and play a huge role in boating accessibility,” he said.

Source: Marianas Variety :

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