Sen. Justin Brown’s Boat Dock Access Bill Becomes Law

JEFFERSON CITY – Property owners on the waters of Missouri will have greater access to their docks now that legislation sponsored by Sen. Justin Brown, R-Rolla, has been signed into law. A new prohibition against obstructing private boat docks is one of several measures included in Senate Bill 49, which the governor signed today.

“I have had many constituents from the Lake of the Ozarks reach out to my office regarding boat dock trespassing. Usually, boat owners are respectful of each other’s property, but a few inconsiderate boaters create problems for others by ignoring common courtesy and basic property rights,” Sen. Brown said. “This legislation clarifies what should be normal etiquette on the water, and provides the Water Patrol clear authority to issue a ticket when necessary.”

Senate Bill 49 prohibits vessels positioned within 100 feet of a permitted boat dock from being anchored in a manner that obstructs ingress or egress of watercraft without permission. The act also provides that no person shall secure a vessel to or enter upon a private boat dock unless authorized to do so by the boat dock permit holder. The law does not prohibit fishing near a dock, so long as access is not blocked.

In addition, the new law gives boat owners the option to permanently register their vessels at a cost three times the usual three-year certificate.

For more information about Sen. Brown, visit