Boating Incentive Act honors Austin & Perry

Posted at 11:27 AM, Mar 15, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-15 11:39:27-04

A bill designed to improve boating safety has been introduced in the U.S. Congress and honors the memory of two Palm Beach County boys lost at sea last year.

U.S. Reps. Patrick Murphy and Tom Rooney introduced this month the "Austin and Perry Safe Boating Incentive Act."

RELATED: Austin Stephanos' father pushes for boating safety

The Tequesta teens, Austin Stephanos and Perry Cohen, never returned from a boating trip July 24, 2015.

The bill would offer a tax credit to small recreational and passenger boat users who use safety beacons.

The credit would cover roughly half the cost of the devices.

"Last summer, our community was shaken by the loss of Austin and Perry.  Like them, I grew up on the water, and it has always been a major part of my life. But unfortunately, tragedy can strike anyone at anytime," said Murphy in a news release.  "By promoting the use of locator beacons to improve recovery efforts and survival chances when accidents occur, we honor the memory of Austin and Perry as well as their love of the water by making boating and water activities safer."

“As the father of three young boys, my heart broke for Austin and Perry’s families when they went missing last summer,” Rooney said in a news release. “This bill is a concrete step in attempting to prevent future tragedies and to help save lives. I hope this bill will encourage more people to install safety beacons on their boats and vessels, so they can continue to experience the joys of boating while also remaining safe.”