As I sit here today writing the Winter President’s report, a recent phone conversation between MCBA Vice President Bill Winowiecki and myself brings up to mind the topic of Michigan’s new recreational marijuana law going into effect soon. What needs to be pointed out for us in the charter industry is, as licensed captains, hold a federally issued license. As most of you know, this means that the State of Michigan may allow for the use of marijuana by its residents but at the federal level, marijuana is a controlled substance. If one of our members fails the random drug test due to the use of marijuana, his federal captain’s license is in jeopardy. The U.S. Coast Guard will be there to take your captain’s license. To get it back, takes lots of time and money spent with attorneys. First mates employment will be terminated as required by federal maritime law as well. As I said above, I am sure everyone here is aware of the law, but some of our young people working as first mates may not be. It is up to us as captains to make sure they know the law as it stands today.
Our MCBA Annual Conference and banquet is now in the history book. I want to thank everyone who attended. I am delighted to have our scholarship program enlarged to include Lake Superior State University fisheries program. We are now supporting scholarships to fisheries students from both Michigan State and Lake Superior State. These two universities are the only two with fisheries and aquatic research programs for college students here in Michigan.
In closing, the MCBA Board and I wish all our members and their families the best for the New Year. This last year was a year of big king salmon and limit catches of walleye. Let us hope going into the 2019 season we experience the same or better.
Captain Eric Andersen – President MCBA