A bill that would have established a permit fee for paddlers in Oregon is unlikely to pass the legislature this year. The bill, HB 2320, has not been scheduled for a key work session, therefore stalling in the legislature. The $12 annual or $20 biannual permit would have been assigned to an individual, who could then use any kayak or canoe. Fees would have funded a Nonmotorized Boating Program to provide safety education, dedicated infrastructure and safety enforcement.
Casualties, demands for infrastructure and safety instruction needs of paddlers have risen dramatically in recent years. Without new funding, the Oregon State Marine Board will continue to prioritize funding of infrastructure needs based on which user group provided the necessary funds. Motorized boating needs receive the highest priority, followed by mixed-use facilities. In recent years there has been no budget available to build dedicated paddlesports facilities. HB 2320 was written after a five-year outreach program and to paddle clubs, groups and individuals.