Minutes of the February 16, 2002 meeting of the Tampa Chapter SAR


President Tetrick called the meeting to order at 12:01. Jim Washburn offered the invocation and Secretary Yarnell led the pledge to the flag and Vice President Bolen led the pledge to the SAR.


Members present: Dwight Tetrick, Elwin Thrasher, Marty Miller, Jim Washburn, Jack Bolen, Jim Chambers, Cy Gamber, Claude Richie, Ed Neugaard, Walter Lane, Ted Dickerson, Fred Patton, Bob Yarnell, and Kevin Yarnell.


Welcome guests: Janett Tetrick, June Bolen, June Patton, and Fimie Richie


The meeting recessed for lunch.


Vice President Jack Bolen reconvened the meeting and introduced our speaker, Lt. J.G. Sara Platt of the US Coast Guard. She is currently the Assistant Operations Officer for the Coast Guard Group, St. Petersburg.


Lt. J.G. Platt offered a brief background of how she came to join the Coast Guard. The remainder of the presentation detailed the roles of the Coast Guard in this area. The west coast of Florida is divided into smaller areas served by four small bases and many vessels. The duties range a great deal including search and rescue. This last is a significant challenge. The Tampa Bay area alone has 50,000 recreational boaters. The chapter was presented with statistics showing the value of the work done with civilian boaters and law enforcement duties. The Coast Guard also maintains all aids to navigation such as channel markers.


Recently, the Coast Guard was charged with Homeland Security. This involved the forming of a task force of all agencies with maritime jurisdiction. Since Tampa is the 10th largest port in terms of traffic, this group is especially important for our area. Vessels entering the harbor are now escorted by some law enforcement vessel. Randomly, some are boarded by Sea Marshals, inspected and then accompanied into the harbor. Lt. J.G. Platt discussed other areas of emphasis such as the Sunshine Skyway Bridge and the Crystal River power plant.


Lt. J.G. Platt concluded with a brief discussion of the future of the Coast Guard and the emphasis on Homeland Security. A brief question period followed.


President Tetrick presented a certificate of appreciation to our speaker.


The SAR membership approved the minutes of the January meeting as published in the newsletter.


The secretary reported. The ROTC medals have been ordered and a mailing to the High School unit commanders will be mailed next week. He reported on a proposal to be presented at the National level to remove the age limitations for SAR membership.


The Treasurer reported a balance of $2,425.41. Marty Miller has audited the books for 2001 and reported they were satisfactory.


Bob Yarnell reported that he sent letters to five schools in the Town and Country area concerning the Good Citizenship awards program. He has not received any responses at this time.


Vice President Bolen explained the change in program that occurred for this meeting. He reported that next month Compatriot Jim Armitage of the DeVane Chapter will be giving a presentation on George Washington. Jack commented on the quality of this presentation and encouraged all to attend.


Elwin Thrasher won the 50/50 drawing and graciously donated his half of the winnings to the chapter. Fourteen dollars were thus added to the treasury.


Jim Washburn commented on the reaction hes received from wearing his SAR jacket when dinning in public.


President Tetrick answered a question from Jim Washburn concerning the Liberty Tree project being pushed by the State Society.


The recessional was led President Tetrick and Jim Washburn gave the benediction. The meeting adjourned at 1:35pm.


Respectfully submitted,


Kevin Yarnell

Chapter Secretary