Abandoned and derelict vessels have been a problem at the Bella Coola Wharf

Abandoned and derelict vessels have been a problem at the Bella Coola Wharf

UBCM latest supporter of NDP abandoned vessel bill

The Bill will fix vessel registration, pilot a vessel turn-in program, and much more.

The Union of BC Municipalities has become the latest community organization who endorsed a resolution urging the Trudeau government to adopt the legislation put forward by NDP MP Sheila Malcolmson to solve the longstanding problem of abandoned vessels.

“This endorsement from the largest organization of local governments in British Columbia highlights that coastal communities can’t wait any longer for legislation to fix abandoned vessels,” Malcolmson said. “They have been sounding the alarm for decades, but after years of neglect, the Trudeau government won’t commit the resources needed to deal with the backlog of abandoned boats.”

Malcolmson also released the endorsements of over 50 coastal organizations from across Canada, including over 20 local governments such as the City of Nanaimo, associations like the Association of Vancouver Island Coastal Communities, the Islands Trust Council and the Vancouver and District Labour Council, as well as marinas, harbours and port authorities from Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, Ontario and British Colombia.

“From Tofino to Fogo Island, coastal communities are urging the Liberals to adopt my legislation to clean up abandoned vessels and protect our waterways and coastlines,” Malcolmson said.

The debate on Malcolmson’s legislation, Bill C-352, is slated to begin later this fall in the House of Commons. The Bill will fix vessel registration, pilot a vessel turn-in program, create good green jobs by supporting local marine salvage businesses and vessel recycling, and make the Coast Guard responsible for directing the removal of abandoned vessels.