Oregon’s ‘Operation Ship Shape’ targets lapsed motorboat registrations


SALEM, Ore. (KTVZ) — The Oregon State Marine Board will be partnering with 32 county sheriff’s offices and the Oregon State Police, looking for expired motorboat registrations as part of a targeted annual “Operation Ship Shape” exercise, August 7-8. 

If you own a motorboat in Oregon, it’s time to check your “OR” numbers on the front of your boat (bow) and make sure you’ve applied your current registration decals. The OR numbers are a boat’s license plate, and registration decals are the tags that tell marine officers if your boat is legally registered and to whom it belongs, similar to motor vehicles. Registrations are valid for two calendar years.

“Oregon’s recreational boating infrastructure is funded entirely by boaters, so it’s really important for every boater out there to be currently registered,” says Randy Henry, Boating Safety Program Manager for the Marine Board. “On August 7 and 8, we’re checking everyone whose decals are expired or numbers are unreadable.”

The Marine Board is funded by registration, title fees and marine fuel taxes paid by motorized boaters. No lottery, general fund tax dollars or local facility parking fees are used to fund agency programs. These fees go back to boaters in the form of boat ramps, docks, trailered parking spaces, restrooms, construction and maintenance, and for boating safety -marine law enforcement services.

“Any boat that is powered by a motor – electric, gas, diesel or steam, and all sailboats 12 feet and longer -must be currently registered when on the water, even when docked or moored,” said Henry. This includes drift boats, inflatable rafts, stand up paddleboards or float tubes with an electric motor. Henry added, “Each boat registration brings in additional funds from motorboat fuel tax and federal boating dollars. Registering a 16-foot boat provides $100.20 of funding, but results in additional matching funds of nearly $190, so this registration fee results in $267 of revenue available to fund facilities and marine enforcement.”

Henry reminds boaters that if they’ve just purchased their boat or are in the process of registering it, be sure to carry the temporary registration and present it to marine officers, just like vehicle registration.

Boaters can renew their motorboat registration online or by visiting their local registration agent. Boaters can print a temporary permit after successfully completing their transaction online. A registration agent will issue a temporary permit for an additional fee. If you need assistance renewing online, please contact the Marine Board at marine.board@oregon.gov or 503-378-8587.


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