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Up on the Board: Boating-safety classes, Liberty Island checkpoints, delays in SBA loans

Iranian Army soldiers stand guard on a military

Iranian Army soldiers stand guard on a military speed boat during the "Velayat-90" navy exercises in the Strait of Hormuz in southern Iran on December 28, 2011 as Iran started 10 days of naval drills from December 24, covering east of Strait of Hormuz and the Gulf of Oman to the Gulf of Aden. The Strait of Hormuz, which Iran has threatened to block if the West applies sanctions on its oil exports, is a strategically important waterway through which 40 percent of the world's seaborne oil transits. AFP PHOTO/IIPA/ALI MOHAMMADI (Photo credit should read ALI MOHAMMADI/AFP/Getty Images) Credit: Getty/ALI MOHAMMADI

With Memorial Day behind us and summer unofficially begun, the editorial board is talking about a proposal in Albany to require boating-safety courses for new operators. Many on the board feel this is a good idea. Is there another instance when someone can operate a heavy vehicle like a boat with no prior training? However, many in the boating community are against the bill and see it as harassment. And we’re not sure that evidence backs up the idea that taking a course reduces the number of accidents. So, we’re looking into this further.

We like the plan from Sen. Chuck Schumer and NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly to move security checkpoints back to Battery Park. The National Park Service decided to screen visitors at Liberty Island and Ellis Island after superstorm Sandy – in an effort to appease Battery Park residents. However, we think the change could make these national landmarks vulnerable to terrorism.

Finally, we’re angry about a report from the House Small Business Committee saying the Small Business Administration is slow to approve loans for New York businesses looking to rebuild after superstorm Sandy. Some applicants are facing significant delays in loan processing, the report says, and others are unable to fully draw on the funding they have been promised. This is especially intolerable for seasonal coastal businesses that have just a few short months to earn their living.

To voice an opinion on any of the above, please fill in a comment in the section below, or email


Up on the Board is the editorial board's blog about what we just discussed at our weekday morning meeting. These meetings are where we talk about the news of the day and hash out our positions for the opinion sections of Newsday, Newsday Westchester and amNew York.