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State Rep. Jason Sheppard (R-Temperance) appears to be easily confused by language in legislation he introduced last month that would severely restrict inland lake boating in Michigan. The bill, House Bill (HB) 4362, would restrict all public boating at inland lakes with access sites to between the hours of 8 a.m. and sunset – effectively killing early morning fishing, sunset cruises and other activities outside of the proposed hours. The bill, which was co-sponsored by Rep. David LaGrand (D-Grand Rapids), quickly caught the attention of boating and fishing organizations around the state, leading Sheppard to walk back the bill. “I recently introduced legislation that has caused some concern among the boating and fishing communities...I introduced HB 4362 to allow for more time to enjoy on Michigan's inland lakes – unfortunately, the way the bill was written does the opposite,” Sheppard wrote on his Facebook page. “Please know that I'm in the process of drafting alternative language to more clearly attain my goal of making our state's waters more accessible to all.” The post now has been shared 135 times and has more than 325 comments, including those questioning the source of the legislation. “Can't believe you'd write a bill then not read what you wrote,” one comment stated. “How about a bill where legislators cannot introduce legislation under the influence,” another wrote.


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