Should long term anchoring in ports be regulated? - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 08-15-2012
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Should long term anchoring in ports be regulated?

In Vancouver BC the port authority is taking action against the practice of anchoring boats for long term storage or liveaboards. Areas like False Creek, which is right in the heart of the city, have become congested with an assortment of liveaboards and stored boats, many of them unseaworthy hulks and eyesores, to the point where visiting boaters have a difficult time finding a place to drop their hook. Many of the liveaboards never leave their mooring, which presumably means that they are flushing their heads directly into the "Creek". (False Creek, as it's name suggests, is not actually a creek but an inlet with very little tidal flush)
Some people have taken issue with the term "squatters" to describe some of these boats. Perhaps the name is a bit inflamatory, but what else do you call it? If I drove into a popular park with my old Winnebago, parked it, and made it my home, would I not be squatting? If I pitched a tent on the front lawn of the Art Gallery and made that my home? So what is the difference? In both those cases I would be moved along because there are regulations against such things, and so there should be! So why shouldn't there be similar rules on our waterfront?
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Old 08-15-2012
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Re: Should long term anchoring in ports be regulated?

Sounds like you have already made up your mind.
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Old 08-15-2012
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Re: Should long term anchoring in ports be regulated?

If others do it, it's trashy.

If *I* do it, it's okay.
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Old 08-15-2012
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Regulations, no; laws yes. It should be illegal to anchor for more than 2 weeks, especially in areas like False Creek. It unfair to commercial ships like the freighters paying high port fees and recreational boater paying moorage and slip fees, and for sanitary services like water and pump out. Where's the trash and crap ending up? Back in the 80s I paid $800 per month for a slip at Canada Place. I'm sure it's higher now. The port authority should have the power by LAW to evict or remove boaters breaking the law. It's unfair for other transient boaters who come and find the back lagoon full with nowhere to anchor. Nightly and weekly fees should be put in place just like all harbours and collected on a daily basis. Failure to pay is a ticket/fine with repeat offenses ending in confiscation and removal of offending boats. If you want to squat, go up one of the uninhabited inlets along the coast and live like a hobit. Most federal fisheries docks along the coast have been cleaned up because of squatters abusing the honor pay system that used to be in place for a temporary stay. Off with their heads I say and let them eat salt cake.
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Old 08-15-2012
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Re: Should long term anchoring in ports be regulated?

This one is a complex issue here in Vancouver.. jurisdiction is not completely clear with federal, provincial and municipal bodies competing. The obvious problems such as sewage dumping, derelict vessels, hazards to navigation, sunken or sinking hulks certainly support some kind of regulation, as well as trying to provide space and welcome for visiting vessels (an area where Vancouver has failed mightily, btw, for a waterfront city - look to Victoria, Nanaimo, Sidney, Comox, Powell River etc for good examples of transient vessel policies and facilities)

Another problem has been that as these 'undesirables' are pushed out of False Creek, they move to other areas. Some in English Bay, less sheltered with the inevitable result of several groundings a year as ground tackle fails in a sudden storm. Others move to other sheltered situations in Squamish, Gibsons, Nanaimo, Pender Harbour just to name a few.

Regulation doesn't seem to be eliminating the problem, merely shifting it around to other unlucky areas who then must try to figure out how to deal with them.

For those who are maintaining their vessels on the hook and truly living aboard and not abandoning or neglecting them come under fire from those sanctioned liveaboards paying moorage, city fees and taxes, sewer charges etc.

But all of this is probably inevitable today given the increasingly high cost and lack of availability of decent moorage for boats much over 25 feet LOA in this area.

I do support laws or regs that limit such 'squatting' and keep the playing field even for all boaters in the area generally, and for those who choose to liveaboard. Sea Hunter is correct in saying there are plenty of remote areas where one might live that lifestyle if they choose.
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Re: Should long term anchoring in ports be regulated?

I think the False Creek system requires you to obtain a permit which is good for 7 days in the summer and 1 month in the winter. You must then move your boat out for at least 24 hours in order to obtain another permit. No doubt all of these derelict boats were dumping their sewage into False Creek. Most of those boats from false Creek moved over to Port Moody and are now anchored near the mud flats. I took a cruise through there the other day and what a mess. 30% should be scuttled, and the remaining 70% should be in marinas. If you cant afford to look after your boat properly then perhaps its time to downsize.
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Re: Should long term anchoring in ports be regulated?

Open water is very different from the front yard of an Art Gallery, IMHO. I just don't tend to think you try to write a regulation for everything. There are ultimately unintended consequences of same and the cost to try to avoid them can be enormous. Often, it requires extensive court costs.

If the community find these boats objectionable, simply try to get rid of them. Some old fashion street corner police work would do the job, or confiscate them as hazards to navigation, if they are abandon.
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Re: Should long term anchoring in ports be regulated?

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyquest37 View Post
Sounds like you have already made up your mind.
Yes, I have an opinion on the subject, and I started this thread to hear others opinion on the subject. That's kind of how these forum things work!
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Old 08-15-2012
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Re: Should long term anchoring in ports be regulated?

I think "long-term" is the key here, even more than pumpouts (which are fairly straightforward to regulate and rules already exist). Whether storing a boat, or living in a boat unable to move under its own power, "long-term" means someone has taken a shared public resource - a section of the harbor or anchorage - for to their own private use, effectively denying it to anyone else.
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Re: Should long term anchoring in ports be regulated?

Vancouver BC is not the only place where this is an issue. Florida is at the forefront of this issue.

Some these to think about.

1) the rights of the public in general to enjoy the waterfront.
2) the rights of private waterfront landowners.
3) the rights of taxpayers not to have to clean up your mess.
4) the rights of free navigation to the mariner under the Law of the Sea
5) the rights of a free person to live free.

Number 5 is the hardest subject really as those that Pay through the nose resent those that found a loophole. Lets face it. A well found cruising boat with solar etc etc and registered in a no property tax state like Florida and on the hook have beat the system.
Your required Land fees are down to a few hundred a year not counting food fuel.
Free fish and cheap rum and a million dollar view........BE prepared to have a lot of enemies. Granted this all takes alot of planning and hard work but Lubbers don't know this. All they know is there Property tax on there house just went up to 8k a year.
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