spending two-and-a-half years working on the Coast Guard Subcommittee of the
Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries in the U.S. House of
Representatives, Larry Innis was hired by the Marine Retailers Association of
America as a contractor to set up its first Washington, D.C., office in March of
primary area of Larry’s work is to represent the interests and viewpoints of
marine retailers before the federal government.
He monitors the work of Congress, including Congressional Committees,
Congressional Leadership and key individual offices, and key federal government
agencies and departments, such as the Coast Guard, the USEPA, the U.S. Fish and
Wildlife Agency, the Small Business Administration, the Department of Labor,
and recently the Department of Agriculture.
Larry prepares testimony and correspondence given to Congress.
MRAA has testified on several issues,
- U.S. Coast Guard Budget
- Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Safety
- Miscellaneous boating safety issues
- Repeal of Coast Guard user fees
- Repeal of the federal luxury tax on recreational boats
- Opposed to increases in CAFÉ
standards for SUVs and pickup trucks
- The need to stabilize gasoline prices
for a vital economy.
In addition, Larry
writes MRAA press releases, Dealer Action Alerts, and Membership Advisories
pertaining to legislative activities. He
also works with several Washington coalitions and writes the Washington Watch
newsletter and articles for Bearings, MRAA's general newsletter.
list of issues MRAA has worked on or has led the charge on over this period of
time is exhaustive. It includes:
the movement to require boat operators to have a license
- Repeal of the luxury
tax and Coast Guard user fees
- Repeal of the expensive insurance requirement
for marinas under the OPA-90 law
of color-coded diesel fuel
- Opposition to adult life jacket wear
funds for dredging, boating safety and sport fish restoration
- Increasing the
availability of federal funds for small business loans
- Expanding the
federal loan programs to include loans for floor plan financing
- Protection of the second home mortgage interest deduction for recreational boat
During his time with MRAA, Larry was a key
factor in the creation of the Marina Operators Association of America (later
became the Association of Marina Industries) and the Marine Environmental
Education Foundation where he served on the Board of Directors from its
inception and as its final Chairman.
Both organizations were established to better serve the interests of
marine retailers who operate marinas and boat yards. Larry served as the original Chair of the
National Clean Boating Week outreach campaign for three years and created the
voluntary Clean Marina program.
Important legislative issues at the time included repeal of the OPA-90
insurance requirements for marinas and the color coded diesel fuel used by
recreational and commercial boating.
also served on the Board of Directors of the National Boating Safety Council,
including Chairman of the National Safe Boating Week, and various Board officer
positions ending as Chairman of the Council for two years. The Council promotes operating a boat in a
safe manner, including a better educated boater and voluntary life jacket wear.
served a six-year term on the National Boating Safety Advisory Council
(appointed by the Secretary of Transportation), which is an advisory council
the U.S Coast Guard on important boating
safety issues such as life jackets, prop guards, boating safety education and
his capacity as a government representative for MRAA, Larry has also worked on
state legislative issues by advising, writing supportive letters, and testifying
on issues important to state Marine Trades Associations, including boating
safety issues (mandatory education and licensing, adult and child life jacket
wear requirements, and general business issues) and dealer bills in Alaska,
Texas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Maryland, Maine, Ohio, and Michigan.