Invasive Species Permit for 2010

All boat owners should be aware of a new permit required for 2010. This permit impacts both motorized and non motorized boat owners. Yes, it means drift boats, canoes, and rafts. Read on to see how it will or could impact you and how to get your permit.

Why do boaters need an Invasive Species Prevention Permit?

* Aquatic invasive species seriously damage waterbodies. Species like the quagga mussel and Eurasian watermilfoil “hitchhike” from one body of water to the next, primarily on boats. Revenues from permits will fund a new statewide prevention program to help protect our waters.
* Destructive invaders including the quagga and zebra mussels are rapidly spreading across the nation degrading water quality, depleting native fish and waterfowl populations and costing millions of dollars in maintenance of water and power facilities. The new program will be implemented by the Oregon State Marine Board and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

What does this mean to the motor boater with a boat registered in Oregon?

* Registered boaters (including sailboats 12 feet and longer that are registered) will pay an additional $5 surcharge when they renew their boat registration. Current boat decals (which are stickers that attach to the bow of the boat) are proof that you’ve paid the fee. Renewal notifications will itemize the cost of registration and the $5 surcharge so boaters understand how their fees are used.
* If your registration expires next year (December 31, 2010), you do not need to have a permit for the 2010 boating season. The fee will automatically be added when you renew your registration.
* Sailboats under 12 feet (that are not registered) will need to carry and purchase a $7 annual permit ($5 + $2 agent fee), which the boater can use with any manually powered boat. Permits for non-motorized vessels are being sold through
* If you have paddle craft, in addition to your motorized vessel, you will need individual permits when the paddle craft are in use. Permits for non-motorized vessels are being sold through

What does this mean for those with manually powered boats (paddlecraft)?


* Non-motorized boat operators (rafts, drift boats, kayaks, canoes, etc.) 10 feet and longer will need to carry and purchase a $7 annual permit ($5 + $2 agent fee), which the boater can use with any manually powered boat.
* Permits are required for both residents AND non-residents and are transferable to other non-motorized craft, but every vessel on the water must have a permit.
* Non-motorized liveries (rental businesses) will receive a quantity discount. Clubs and organizations can have permits issued in their name. Permits must be purchased directly from the Oregon State Marine Board.
* Permits are printed on water-resistant paper and easy to carry.

What about out-of-state visitors?

* Out-of-state visitors who trailer a motorized boat will be required to purchase a $22 annual permit ($20 permit + $2 agent fee) and carry it with them when boating on Oregon waters.
* Permits will be available ONLY through ODFW license agents, ODFW offices that sell licenses and on the ODFW web site. Out-of-state permits will not be sold through boat registration agents or the Oregon State Marine Board.
* Non-motorized out-of-state visitors will need to purchase the $7 annual permit ($5 + $2 agent fee).

What about Stand-Up Paddle Boards (SUP’s). Do they need a permit?

* YES. The USCG determined that stand-up paddle boards are considered boats for the purpose of life jacket requirements. Based on this determination, and if the stand-up paddle board is 10 feet or longer, the operator would need to have a permit.

What about multi-jurisdictional waters like the Columbia and Snake Rivers?

* Oregon residents will need to have the permit. Washington residents who launch in Washington follow Washington waterway rules. Because Washington does not have an invasive species permit program, Washington boaters do not need to purchase Oregon’s when operating on the Mainstem Columbia River.
* The Multnomah Channel is considered “inside” Oregon, and permits will be required when boating in the channel.
* Along the Snake River into Idaho, if Oregon boaters launch in Idaho, then they will need Idaho’s out-of-state aquatic invasive species prevention permit. If they launch in Oregon and boat into Idaho, they will need Oregon’s permit.


Where do I get a permit?

* Permits can be purchased online at the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Web site:
* ODFW license agents and ODFW offices that sell licenses. A complete list can be found at
* Remember, motorboat registration fees include the $5 permit. Current registration decals are proof of payment into the AIS program.

Does this mean non-motorized boats will have to be registered?

* No. Non-motorized boats are NOT titled or registered under the program. Fees from permits are deposited directly into a fund dedicated to this program. They do not benefit the state’s general fund. Some of the funds will be transferred to ODFW to implement the program.
* Permits will be in the names of the people/organization purchasing them.

Why do motorized boats pay $5 every two years and non-motorized $7 ($5 permit + $2 agent fee) each year?

* Boat registration decals are non-transferrable -they adhere to the bow of the boat. Non-motorized permits are transferrable.
* Because this is a new program involving a different segment of boater, a new delivery system will need to be created which carries additional overhead costs.
* The surcharge on a motorboat will be automatic, with little overhead cost. Motorboaters are already paying a certain amount of their registration fees to maintain the registration data infrastructure. Eight-six percent of boaters’ fees go back to the boater in the form of boating access facilities, marine patrol services, and education/outreach programs.
* Because ODFW has nearly 500 point of sale agents and an online license sales system, their permit delivery system better serves boaters statewide.

Are there any exemptions to the new law?

* Yes, but they’re very limited and specific.
* State, county and municipality-owned watercraft used for official business.
* A ship’s lifeboat used solely for lifesaving purposes
* Seaplanes
* The Lightship Columbia
* Eleemosynary groups (Eleemosynary organizations are those which are operated primarily as a part of organized activities for the purpose of teaching youths scoutcraft, camping, seamanship, self-reliance, patriotism, courage and kindred virtues). Defined in ORS 830.790.

What if I don’t purchase a permit?

* Law Enforcement Officers will issue warnings for the first few months of the program. After that, they will begin actively enforcing the new law which is a Class D Violation which carries a $142 fine.

What if I lose my permit? How do I get a replacement?

* Because personal information isn’t kept, boaters will need to purchase another permit.

All boaters need to take personal responsibility by taking a few extra steps to prevent the spread of unwanted invaders.–LV

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4 Responses to Invasive Species Permit for 2010

  1. Rob R says:

    Thanks for the heads-up, Lou!!

  2. matt r says:

    Lou, I talked to OSMB today and the lady there said driftboats are exempt unless they are operated witha motor at least some of the time. What’s the deal?

  3. Karl Mueller says:


    All non-motorized craft are going to have to buy the permit. I am certain of this. I think she was confused and talking about registration.

  4. aaron says:

    What is an Eleemosynary group and how do you prove you are in one or are running one? Never heard of these.

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