Save the Delta Queen: A private initiative to save the steamboat Delta Queen A private initiative to save the steamboat Delta Queen
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Delta Queen: important decisions this week

Apr 20, 2008

This week might become a very important week for the Delta Queen: the Coast Guard Reauthorization Bill has been scheduled in the House of Representatives for Thursday, April 24. If the Committee on Rules will accept the Delta Queen amendment to this bill, the House will vote on the Delta Queen’s future on that day. The Rules Committee most likely meets Tuesday evening to consider the amendment. Congressman Steve Chabot, who has introduced this amendment, will testify before the Committee.

Coast Guard Reauthorization Bill and the Rules Committee:

Please, if you can, support Rep. Steve Chabot by reminding the members of the Rules Committee of the importance of this cause by fax or personally on the phone (see details and a member list of the Rules Committee here: http://www.save-the-delta-queen.org/february-26th-is-the-day/).

Stand-alone bill H.R. 3852 and the House Leadership:

At the same time we’re rallying to convince the Leadership of the House of Representatives to put the stand-alone bill for saving the Delta Queen (H.R. 3852) on the suspension schedule of the House of Representatives, which will bypass the Transportation Committee where Rep. James Oberstar is still effectively blocking everything that might save the Delta Queen. As part of this rally campaign team member Wesley Paulson has delivered copies of more than 5.000 petitions to the Washington offices of the House Leadership members personally this week.

This probably is the best chance the Delta Queen had so far. Please, if you can, support this. Check http://www.save-the-delta-queen.org/a-new-chance-for-the-delta-queen/ for details about how you can help to convince the House Leadership from putting the bill on the suspension calendar.

We’ve prepared a brief form letter for you which makes it really ! easy for you to send a fax to the Speaker of the House, Hon. Nancy Pelosi, and other members of the House Leadership:  http://www.save-the-delta-queen.org/form-letters-house-leadership-veterans/

This will be an exciting week and we’ll keep you updated, of course.

I’ve attached a press release we’ve sent out yesterday. Feel free to forward it to your local newspapers and TV stations immediately so they can cover the story this week.

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The Save the Delta Queen Campaign
NEWS
For immediate release

 

Date: April 18, 2008

Contact:
Vicki Webster (513) 381-3571, e-mail: vjw__at__ olympen.com
Wesley Paulson (240) 593-4090

 

Supporters Ask House Leadership to Save the Delta Queen

WASHINGTON ? The Save the Delta Queen Campaign has asked for help from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, and Majority Whip James Clyburn. This afternoon, Wesley Paulson a key member of the grassroots movement, delivered petitions signed by more than 5,000 supporters. The petitions are being accompanied by a stream of phone calls, faxes, and email messages urging the Leadership to let the whole House of Representatives vote on pending legislation that will allow the boat to remain in operation.

The Delta Queen is the last traditional steamboat carrying overnight passengers on America?s inland waterways. For that reason she has been designated a National Historic Landmark. In 1966, she was inadvertently caught in the technical provisions of the Safety at Sea Act?a piece of legislation that was intended to cover ocean-going ships, not riverboats. Recognizing the difference between boats that oper! ate on r ivers, within yards of the shore, and ships that sail the high seas, Congress established an exemption for the Delta Queen in 1968. Since then, the exemption has been renewed nine times, in virtually every case by near-unanimous votes in both the House and the Senate.

Without congressional action, the current exemption will expire on November 1, 2008. Bipartisan legislation to extend the exemption, H.R. 3852, was introduced by Congressman Steve Chabot (R-OH) on October 16, 2007. Currently it has 29 cosponsors. The bill remains in the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure because Committee Chairman James Oberstar of Minnesota refuses to release it to the floor.

In speaking of the effort to save the boat, Congressman Chabot said, ?The Delta Queen is an experience you can?t get in a museum or from the history books?you have to live it and it?s worth preserving. I know that the American people do not want this national treasure to be forced ashore and Congress needs to act before an important chapter in our nation?s history is closed.?

Congressmen William Lacy Clay (D-MO), one of the bill?s original cosponsors, had this to say: ?The Delta Queen is more than an irreplaceable historic vessel, it is also a symbol of the bold American spirit that had the courage to tame the continent and make us one nation, from sea to shining sea. This is the right thing to do for the Delta Queen. And it?s the right thing to do for future g! eneratio ns of Americans and international visitors who deserve the chance to travel on this magnificent vessel.?

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One Response to “Delta Queen: important decisions this week”

  1. Rules Committee rejects amendment Says:

    […] Committee is still blocking this bill from going to the House’s floor regular schedule. See Delta Queen: important decisions this week for details how you can support this […]