I sit on the board of a quasi-public corporation that looks after the maritime assets of a small New England seaport. One of our corporate responsibilties is to provide harbormaster services to the town. Our Harbormaster has recently come under some criticism by some town officials for not issuing enough citations -- he's issued one or two "moving violation" citations in the harbor in the last five years. He says his enforcement philosophy is to work with boaters, to educate them on the wisdom of doing the right thing and only to use legal sanctions when he has to tell you twice. The police chief thinks he's a whimp and should be busting more people for the marine equivalent of traffic violations.
Three questions for the gathered nautical cognosenti:
1/ Have you ever been cited (ticketed) while boating? How many times in how many years on the water?
2/ How many boaters do you know who have been cited (ticketed) by a harbormaster or harbor police?
3/ What's your reaction when you hear about a harbor where the rules of the road are strictly enforced? Is this the kind of place you want to visit because you know you'll be safe? or the kind of place you'll avoid for fear of a guy with a glock and a flak jacket driving 250 HP of flashing blue lights?
Note: responses will not be attributed to any individual.
Thanks for your help in bringing some hard facts to what can only be described as a political mud slinging contest.
PS for CD: this is about politics, but it's also about boating -- so I beg your indulgence!