I live very close to, and am a big fan of, the Columbia River Bar Pilots and the Columbia River Pilots. I’ve heard them speak a number of times on local maritime topics of interest in Astoria and elsewhere. The understanding I’ve gotten from that is that they are kind of a chartered monopoly, subject to appointment and licensing by the State of Oregon. Occasionally, I have casually wondered about that because, of course, the Columbia and its estuary are “interstate” waters, but I’ve never heard the State of Washington mentioned in connection with their charter.
Possibly I’ve just missed that point. Certainly Washington has a State Pilot’s Commission just like Oregon, but I sort of wondered if, maybe by agreement, Oregon took the Columbia for regulation and Washington took the Sound and it’s reaches.
But it would seem like the Feds could wiggle into that on the basis of the “interstate commerce” business?? As far as I know, that’s never been an issue here though. (they are, of course, all Coast Guard licensed, unlimited masters). But I really don’t know much about this and am posting this reply more in the hope that somebody does know about the Columbia and might comment and enlighten me.