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Marine Log

December 19, 2006

USCG withdraws Great Lakes live fire training proposal

The U.S. Coast Guard has announced its decision to withdraw a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to establish 34 safety zones for live-fire training on the Great Lakes. The decision follows internal review, meetings with many community leaders, as well as nine public meetings, and numerous comments from the public and their elected representatives.

"The Coast Guard appreciates the thoughtful comments we received and we will work with the public to ensure the Coast Guard can meet any threat to public safety or security. We are committed to addressing the concerns that training be safe, preserve the diverse uses of the Lakes, and protect the environment," said Rear Adm. John E. Crowley, Jr., commander of the Ninth Coast Guard District.

"As a native son of the region I take the Coast Guard's role as guardians of the Great Lakes very seriously. The Great Lakes are one of the nation's most precious resources. The current NPRM is unsatisfactory and I will take the time to get this right. We will not conduct live-fire training on the Great Lakes to satisfy non-emergency training requirements unless we publish a rule, and I intend to reconsider the number, frequency of use, and location of water training areas as well as other concerns raised by the public. I am also committed to pursuing environmentally-friendly alternatives to the lead ammunition we currently use."

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