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Old 31-03-2015, 11:06   #151
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Re: What a dump marina

Originally Posted by zboss View Post
...The point is... if they get this crazy about a 64 square inch space in their front yard just imagine how they get with a truly derelict boat out back.
Trying to get a little closer to the topic again.

I would imagine that they would be just as upset and for exactly the same reason: they are under the mistaken impression that they own the land that the cable company wants to use or that they have any control over the water behind their house.

The area where the cable company puts its box is on an easement that belongs to the local government (whatever that may be). The water behind their house, and in Florida (with very few exceptions), even the land behind their house below the mean high water mark belongs to the state as well.

I have lived in Florida my entire life and have owned property here for most of my adult life. Some of that property has been waterfront property. That being said, I understand that my property rights end at my property line. I may not like what is happening out on the easement or what is anchored out back but that does not give me any right to dictate or restrict any otherwise lawful use of a piece of property which I do not own.

The issue of dealing with derelict boats should not be confused with the issue of people not wanting to look at derelict boats. Derelict boats are a problem and there are already laws on the books in Florida to deal with them.

Florida currently defines a derelict vessel as one that is:

1. In a wrecked, junked, or substantially dismantled condition upon any public waters of this state.
2. At a port in this state without the consent of the agency having jurisdiction thereof.
3. Docked, grounded, or beached upon the property of another without the consent of the owner of the property

It is unlawful to store, leave or abandon a derelict vessel in the state (1st degree misdemeanor). FWC, local police departments, local sheriff's departments - pretty much anyone who carries a gun and can arrest you - is authorized to remove a derelict vessel.

I'm not saying that the definition is a perfect one, but I do see a lot of vessels that unambiguously fit it which are not being dealt with under the existing law.

The OP specifically mentioned a boat which was sitting on the bottom and five others which appeared to be partially dismantled. For the sake of argument I'll concede that all six fit the legal definition of a derelict vessel under Florida law. That means that the Florida Fish and Wildlife commission, Monroe County Sheriff's Department and perhaps a municipal police department all have jurisdiction to have any or all of them removed right now under the existing law.
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Old 31-03-2015, 11:44   #152
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Re: What a dump marina

Originally Posted by rwidman View Post
I think a big part of the fear of anchored boats is the assumption that the occupants are dumping their garbage and sewage in the water. And for many liveaboards anchored for long periods, this probably is the case.

Personally, I would think putting a time limit on anchoring in one spot would take care of most of the objections, but this is much harder to enforce than just prohibiting anchoring altogether.

And of course, since I can't vote in Florida, I really have no say in the matter other than not going there.
I agree that this is a fear that is held by many, but is it rational?

Is the garbage and sewage being dumped into the water because the boat is anchored or is it happening because the occupants of the boat choose not to deal with their trash and sewage properly?

Would they choose to act any differently if they were under way or had just arrived at or were preparing to leave an anchorage?

I don't think that making them move periodically would have any effect on their behavior other than perhaps accidentally causing them to move into a jurisdiction that would actually enforce the law. In the meantime, I suspect it would only cause them to foul the waters at and between several anchorages rather than the one they are currently fouling.

If you really wanted to stop the behavior it would be easier if they were holding still so you could catch them at it.

Once again, for the sake of argument, I will concede that these hypothetical liveaboards are guilty of dumping everything up to and including the kitchen sink. There are already laws which prohibit their actions. I think a better solution is to enforce the laws which govern the behavior, not to add a new law (restricting anchoring) which does not directly address the behavior but only spreads it out over a larger area.
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Old 31-03-2015, 16:56   #153
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Re: What a dump marina

Originally Posted by Be Free View Post
I agree that this is a fear that is held by many, but is it rational?............
It doesn't have to be rational, it just has to be believed. The American voters have been shown to be irrational many times.

We all have our own ideas of how to solve Florida's boat anchoring problems but we are not in a position to do anything about them unless we are Florida voters.
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Old 31-03-2015, 18:23   #154
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Re: What a dump marina

To make matters worse... the City of Marathon Marina posted a letter that Marathon sent to the committee regarding the new anchoring ordinance. In it they express support for the ordinance with the exception of the 200 foot offset, instead supporting an existing 50 foot offset. At first this sounds good but the rest of the proposed ordinance includes anchoring time limits and this is just as bad as the offset.

Again, I believe that offsets and anchoring limits are unconstitutional on the same grounds as offsets and protest limits around abortion clinics that the US Supreme court ruled on last year. It may be distasteful to some to compare our rights to abortion clinic laws but our right to free association and freedom of speech is no different than these protestors.

US Supreme Court throws out Massachusetts abortion clinic buffer zone law - Metro - The Boston Globe
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