Newport Chapter volunteers visited Salem this past week to talk about some of their priority issues with their elected officials. This legislative session the chapter is interested in a number of bills related to marine debris and coastal planning for climate change, two of which lie within the House Rural Communities Land Use and Water Committee, on which local Representative Gomberg has a seat.

Volunteers Sage DeLuna, Leo Newberg and Vince Pappalardo get a tour of the House floor with Rep. Gomberg

Volunteers Sage DeLuna, Leo Newberg and Vince Pappalardo get a tour of the House floor with Rep. Gomberg

Below is a quick synopsis of a couple of the bills the chapter volunteers highlighted and discussed during their visit. One of the highlights of the day was getting a little tour of the House floor from Representative Gomberg, where everyone got an opportunity to stand at the helm!

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HB2463 – Submerged Land Enhancement Fund – discussed strengthening with additional marine debris language and issues with seizure of certain properties, prioritization of coastal connection and beaches with derelict gear, impacts to small coastal ports, etc.,

HB 2633 Relating to Natural Hazards – high interest for coastal adaptation strategies with respect to climate change, planning and regulatory actions. Retention of climate change language and adaptation strategies within bill is critical for coastal communities planning/sustainability, coastal and beach preservation.