What do we make of the marinas in Savannah and surrounding areas that claim not to enforce the law and welcomes (in a non self-incriminating way) live aboards and provides services for them? Will the boats in these marinas get tagged just as often or mainly vessels which are anchored out? I understand the definition of the law, I was just curious as to the quality of living aboard illegally in these types of marinas who don't have a problem with it.
So far, here is what is happening here. First folks busted were on the hook although DNR has been "bugging" marina owners for a while. Folks on the hook were told to get off the creek and into a marina and they would be ok. We took that advice, and as soon as we hit the dock (within 48 hrs) DNR contacted the marina owners with an "or else" as the reg says:
Owners of docks where live-aboards are moored as well as owners and occupants of live-aboards are responsible under this part.
This resulted in the 2 of us who moved in off the creek as well as one poor soul who had been flying under the radar getting told to get off the boat or out of the marina.
Down the way, a marina that has 10 to 15 "liveaboards" flying under the radar one couple on board a restored 50' Chris got the boot for not being "stealthy". Having spent some time in this marina I know the owner will allow liveaboards (as long as you pay an extra dollar a foot) but you better be quiet about it. No acting like you live there. No mail, no parties, no comment.
Can't hardly blame the owners for rolling over, as they have to get permitted by DNR and the fines alone could put them under.
Hopefully with enough public opinion we can get this changed so nobody has to sneak around and lie.
Side note: At least Chatham County now considers any vessel anchored in a non-designated anchorage in excess of 30 days "abandoned" unless of course you are living on it, and then guess what. Another issue, but it gives you an idea of what the local authorities are trying to do.
galiveaboards.org is now registered with internic, and we hope to have the website up in a few days. Check there for more updates, discussions, meeting dates etc. Thanks again for the discussion and support.
Capt David ONeill