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Posted by California Ships to Reefs on January 12, 2010 at 21:20:07:

Thanks to all your support letters & emails, AB 634 passed out of the State Assembly Committee on Judiciary today, with a 7 - 0 vote. It is now headed for the Assembly Floor, where it must be approved no later than January 31, 2010, but could be voted upon as early as Monday, January 18th.

As you know, California Ships to Reefs has been working with state governmental agencies to lay the groundwork for approval of artificial reef projects along the length of the California coast. The main goals of these artificial reefs are the creation of new habitats for ocean inhabitants, creating new SCUBA diving and fishing sites resulting in greater opportunities for ocean enthusiasts as well as economic opportunities for businesses providing services to them, and to provide a reasonable alternative to the long-term storage or scrapping of decommissioned military or retired commercial ships.

Assembly Bill AB634, authored by Assemblywoman Diane Harkey (R-Dana Point) and sponsored by California Ships to Reefs, provides a significant cornerstone to the approvals needed from these agencies. AB634 specifically protects state and local agencies from liability with respect to diving incidents that may occur on artificial reefs placed in areas controlled by state or local governments (State Lands Commission is one example). Without passage of AB634, it will be very difficult to go further with the other required approvals needed to work on artificial reef projects.

It is critical that those wishing to see artificial reefing succeed in California the way it has elsewhere in the country (e.g., Florida) or internationally (e.g., British Columbia) express support for this bill by calling, emailing or faxing your assembly member. Because AB 634 can be voted upon as early as Monday, January 18th, snail mail is not recommended. Feel free to use the sample letter below to express your support. You can simply copy and paste it into the ďcommentsĒ section of the memberís website contact page, or send an email.

If you donít know who your Assemblymember is visit http://www.assembly.ca.gov/defaulttext.asp. Once you have your Assemblymemberís name, you can email him/her at Assemblymember.____________@assembly.ca.gov . Just insert the Memberís last name in the blank Ė no underline.
Thank you for your help!

California State Assembly
State Capitol, Room _____
Sacramento, CA 95814

RE: AB 634 - Support

Dear Assemblymember __________________,

As an avid ocean sport enthusiast and constituent concerned with ocean conservancy, I would like to express my full support for Assembly Bill AB634. This bill will enable the State and local jurisdictions to participate in the placing of artificial reefs, beneficial to the economy and the environment, free of the liability for injuries that might occur to persons diving on these reefs. I believe that artificial reefing can provide great benefits for ocean conservancy, economic benefits for businesses providing services to ocean enthusiasts, and viable alternatives for disposal of decommissioned military or retired commercial vessels.

I support AB634 and ask you to help assure that it passes through the State Legislature.

your name here

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