The Coast Guard is implementing a policy that will prohibit access to about two miles of the Potomac surrounding the Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Va., due to security concerns.
When Trump or other senior officials are using the golf course, limitations will apply to canoes, kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, sailboats, Jet Skis, motorboats and anglers.
The access restrictions will only be lifted if the Secret Service gives them permission, due to the “high-ranking government officials” at the course, Lt. Amanda Faulkner, a spokeswoman for the Coast Guard, told The Washington Post Monday.
She, however, did not clarify who classifies as a “high-ranking” official, adding that the Coast Guard will take orders directly from the Secret Service regarding which officials could set off the necessary security.
While the area has been shut down five times since March, Faulkner said there is a positive side to the “permanent security zone” because boaters will now be notified what areas are off-limits.
The plan is temporary for now, she said, but it will become final after public comments are received by the Coast Guard. The deadline is Aug. 9 to send in the responses.
Notably, controversy surrounded Trump’s golf course in 2010 when the golf club chopped down hundreds of trees, which some say is now the reason why the president’s security is more at risk.
Attorney Adam Van Grack, chairman of USA Canoe and Kayak, told WUSA9 that the the policy is “a serious threat to numerous businesses.”
Susan Sherrod, the Canoe Cruisers Association chairwoman said, “This is a river-access issue. It’s not a political issue.” Sherrod also made it clear that she did not approve of the new system, saying that Trump can “go play golf somewhere else,” according to WUSA9.
“It’s reasonable that the Secret Service and the Coast Guard are working together to create a secure zone. If there’s a motorcade in D.C., you might have to sit there for 20 minutes and wait for the motorcade to pass,” Brett Mayer of the American Canoe Association, said. “These closures, they’re temporary, and they’re sporadic,” he added.
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