New Law announced by US Coast Guard

New Law as of April 1st , 2021

U.S. Coast Guard Announces New Law Requiring Use of Engine Cut-off Switches

Operators of recreational vessels less than 26 feet in length will be required to use an engine cut-off switch (ECOS) and associated ECOS link (ECOSL) as of April 1, 2021, as the U.S. Coast Guard implements a law passed by Congress.

The ECOS and ECOSL prevent runaway vessels and the threats they pose. The ECOSL attaches the vessel operator to a switch that shuts off the engine if the operator is displaced from the helm. The ECOSL is usually a lanyard style cord that attaches to an ECOS either in close proximity to the helm or on the outboard motor itself if the vessel is operated by a tiller. When enough tension is applied, the ECOSL disengages from the ECOS and the motor is automatically shut down. Wireless ECOS have recently been developed and are also approved for use. These devices use an electronic “fob” that is carried by the operator and senses when it is submerged in water, activating the ECOS and turning the engine off. Wireless devices are available on the aftermarket and are beginning to become available as manufacturer-installed options.

Each year the Coast Guard receives reports of recreational vessel operators who fall or are suddenly and unexpectedly thrown out of their boat. These events have led to injuries and deaths. During these incidents the boat continues to operate with no one in control of the vessel, leaving the operator stranded in the water as the boat continues on course, or the boat begins to circle the person in the water eventually striking them, often with the propeller. These dangerous runaway vessel situations put the ejected operator, other users of the waterway, and marine law enforcement officers and other first responders in serious danger.

Section 503 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2018 required manufacturers of covered recreational boats (less than 26 feet in length, with an engine capable of 115 lbs. of static thrust) to equip the vessel with an ECOS installed as of December 2019. Owners of recreational vessels produced after December 2019 are required to maintain the ECOS on their vessel in a serviceable condition. It is recommended that recreational vessel owners regularly check their existing ECOS system to ensure it works, following manufacturer’s instructions.

Section 8316 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2021 requires individuals operating covered recreational vessels (less than 26 feet in length, with an engine capable of 115 lbs. of static thrust; 3 HP or more) to use ECOS “links.” Using the ECOSL is required only when the primary helm is not within an enclosed cabin, and when the boat is operating on plane or above displacement speed. Common situations where ECOSL use would not be required include docking/trailering, trolling and operating in no-wake zones.   

The Coast Guard believes that the overwhelming majority of recreational vessels produced for decades have had an ECOS installed, so this new use requirement simply obligates recreational vessel operators to use critical safety equipment already present on their boat.

Seven states currently have ECOS use laws for traditional recreational vessels, and 44 states have ECOS use laws for personal watercraft (PWC).

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Lance Freeman shines on Final Day of FNC

Lance Freeman on day1 bagged 5/5 fish for 14-14 lbs. Day 2 his 5 fish limit weighed in at 19-08 lbs, and on day 3 smoked the field with another 5 fish limit with another 19 plus pound sack to capture the Federation National Championship on Grand Lake of the Cherokee in Grove. Ok.

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KBF High School SAF & Jr 15&Under

Due to High Water Conditions: The following changes have been made for Safety Reasons.

The March 14 HS SAF & Junior 15& Under has been moved to Cumberland Lake out of Conley Bottom ramp and the April 4 event at Cumberland has been switched to March 14

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2020 TBF & FLW 2 yr Agreement

After several weeks of negotiation for TBF & FLW they have reached a new partnership agreement.

To let KBF members be aware of some changes in the New Program vs the Old Program.

Overall Highlights.

Because TBF dues are and always have been due by Jan 1 each year the changeover to the new program takes effect Jan 1. Any TBF dues that were received in the national office and fully paid before Jan 1, 2020 will be processed under the old (2019) agreement and will INCLUDE a full FLW competitor membership. ANY dues received and processed AFTER Jan 1 will be under the new FLW program agreement. This will take care of those who made the effort to get their dues in on time or was are already in transit.

Members & Clubs need to be aware that YOUR insurance lapsed on December 31, 2019 as it does every year since 1990 when the state presidents voted the Federation dues into place. KBF Board Meeting & Membership meeting is fast approaching this coming weekend.  A Club is covered in the Insurance program for all clubs that have submitted a Membership Roster with a minimum of 6 dues paying members.  Should there be an occurrence for an insurance claim, only Clubs that are in good standing and only members of said club that is listed on the submitted Roster is included in coverage.

ALL TBF members will get a FLW subscriber membership as a part of their TBF dues including (4) issues of FLW Digital magazine. Already we are being asked the question of “Do I have to have to upgrade to a FLW competitor membership to compete at KBF or TBF events”?  The answer here is no you do not.

We have been asked several times the following question.  “Will we still have the FLW Insurance by not being FLW members?”   FLW has NEVER furnished Insurance for any TBF Member or Club.  All Insurance that Members or Clubs have is and has always been furnished by TBF as a part of your annual $50 dues you pay nationally each year.

Since the Beginning of TBF, Inc. KBF members have paid a combined membership fee of $65.00. This provided the KBF State dues of $15 + the $50 National Dues collected to provide the benefits, insurance, payouts and discounted FLW partnership memberships any remaining amounts were used to grow membership and run TBF so that all dues money could be paid back to the member programs. None of that is changing other than the level of FLW membership (since they had a dues increase and the competitor membership is now $75)

A breakdown of items that our KBF members are concerned with and asking.

Beginning January 1, 2020, your $65.00 Membership covers your State dues, TBF National dues, FLW Subscriber Membership and any remainder if any, used to grow membership and run TBF so that all dues money could be paid back to the member programs. In prior years, the Agreement specified that ALL TBF members would be required to join FLW as a COMPETITOR member. The new agreement does not require that level of membership (which is now $75) to the public.

  • As a KBF member you are eligible to compete at all KBF / TBF events. YOU as a KBF/TBF member with only the FLW Subscriber Membership are eligible for competition in all the events scheduled and ran by KBF or TBF.
  • Since the bulk of our members do NOT ever fish a FLW event we could not and would not force an increase on all those members since FLW raised their competitor memberships to $75, so for the bulk of our members it is no change.  At the same time we have negotiated a great discount for those KBF/TBF members who DO want to fish a FLW event so that they get a great benefits as well. So a KBF member that want to compete in the BFL’s or any other FLW event will have to purchase a FLW Competitor Membership directly from FLW and when calling FLW you must tell them you are an ACTIVE Member of TBF. HOWEVER, you as a active TBF member WILL get the LOWEST possible discount offered, a significant discounted rate of $48.75 for the FLW Competitor Membership directly from FLW, just for being a TBF/KBF member. THAT savings is more than ½ your annual TBF National Dues!
  • FLW Advancement Contingency, (much like Ranger Cup or any other contingency bonus) KBF members that advance from the state to the NSF & FNC and want to be able to accept an ADVANCMENT SPOT into the FLW BFL-All American  or the FLW Series Championship you must have purchased the FLW Competitor Membership to qualify for advancement to those two events (only) FROM the TBF Federation Championship before the start of day 1 of your District TBF National Semi Finals. As a competitor in the NSF or FNC you are eligible to win all Cash or Prizes that are listed for the place of finish at either of these events you do NOT have to be a FLW competitor member to fish those events or win all the other prizes. (You just cannot accept an ADVANCEMENT from the Federation Championship into the two events listed above which are FLW events from the Federation Championship without having the FLW Competitor Membership).  SHOULD YOU FEEL YOU HAVE A CHANCE TO WIN THAT POSITION, YOU MUST HAVE PURCHASED THE COMPETITOR MEMBERSHIP BEFORE THE START OF DAY 1 AT YOUR RESPECTIVE DISTRICT TBF National SEMI FINAL. However there are other prizes and advancement spots at the TBF Federation Championship starting in 2020 both with FLW and outside of FLW that do NOT require anything other than a TBF membership.
  • TBF continues to grow and offer MORE to our members. IN 2015’s TBF National Championship the total payout in cash and prizes was just over $200,000.00. Since the start of the TBF national Semi-finals it has grown every year, the Payout for this year’s 2020 TBF National Championship will exceed $350,000.00 in cash and prizes!.

Multiple Advancement Spots & Living YOUR Dream and more expanded!

Moving forward TBF has built “Live YOUR dream” packages so each angler can “Live THEIR Dream.”  All 7 division champion boaters and 7 division champion co-anglers from the 2020 TBF Federation National Championship will not only win a CASH prize but receive a Live YOUR dream bonus package.

                For the TBF National Champion Boater, It starts with a new Z520 Ranger boat and Evinrude 250 G2 outboard fully rigged that our national champion boater gets to KEEP, PLUS a significant CASH prize, entry fee payment stipend amount and more.

There will be MULTIPLE advancement spots to multiple circuits (not just FLW events) for top boaters and top co-anglers from the TBF Federation Championship. Both with and without paid entry fee options and for all (7) TBF divisions. Including a LONG list of multiple circuits affiliated with TBF, TBF state federations, FLW and our other partners and sponsors.  Maybe you cannot fish the FLW pro circuit, maybe there are NO BFL’s in your area, then the FLW Series might fit! Or maybe traveling a circuit is NOT your thing and there is a local TBF or TBF sponsor affiliate\partner circuit in your local area. That’s all OK as long as it is a TBF approved circuit connected to us or one of our partners or sponsors. Choose what YOU want to fish and we will help you with it if you’re a top finisher from the TBF championship.

YES, there will still be 14 TBF members advance to the BFL All-American just like before. Highest finisher from each TBF division who meet the FLW Advancement Contingency (defined above).

YES, (and more) there will be a guaranteed spot for our TBF National Champion BOATER and (NEW!) TBF National Champion Co-Angler into the FLW Series Championship! (again they must meet the FLW advancement Contingency to earn this spot).

YES, there will be a spot reserved for our TBF Federation Champion, LTD angler if they choose to fish the FLW Pro Circuit.

All with NO increase in TBF dues AND it allows TBF to be able to reinvest dollars back in to our own TBF adult program to give more to our TBF members and expand it for our members moving forward.

NO Change – YOU at the club/state level do not have to change or do anything in the system or invoicing or price wise. NO CHANGE to your processes.

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