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cmac321 01-28-2019 08:07 PM

Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
1 Attachment(s)
I purchased a 24' Sailboat around the beginning of September 2018, with plans to teach my son how to sail. I took the boat to the Ballard Park area of Melbourne, FL and moored it out. Ballard Park is a well know anchorage for boats.

Everything was fine for the first month or so, and then one day a Melbourne Police Officer shows up to my home with a handful of tickets for violation of:

Florida Statute 327.50 § (2): No person shall operate a vessel on the waters of this state unless said vessel is equipped with properly serviceable lights and shapes required by the navigation rules.

https://d2g8igdw686xgo.cloudfront.ne...7406834_r.jpeg

He was claiming I did not have an anchor light. I immediately went out to fix the anchor light and to my surprise the anchor light was actually working. The light is a solar powered light and it can be seen in the boat picture at the top of the mast.

About a week later the same Police Officer shows up to my home again and gives me another handful of tickets for the same thing. At this time I questioned the Officer about it and informed him that I went out and checked on the boat and the light was working. He told me that the people who lived around the cove were complaining about the boats being anchored out there and that I should just move the boat. I told him the law is not for him to run me out of a place I am legally allowed to be, just because someone else doesn't like it.

After the second round of tickets I filed for court dates and started to research the law. The law states "No person shall OPERATE a vessel on the waters of this state unless said vessel is equipped with properly serviceable lights and shapes required by the navigation rules." as shown in the picture above.

The law has a section that defines the word "operate":

https://d2g8igdw686xgo.cloudfront.ne...9258263_r.jpeg

The law specifically states that "operate" means "while the vessel is underway". The definition of "underway" is:

According to 33 USCS foll 30 R 3 (i), the word underway means “that a vessel is not at anchor, or made fast to the shore, or aground.”

https://d2g8igdw686xgo.cloudfront.ne...8863350_r.jpeg

I was not "underway" or "operating" ANYTHING! I was home SLEEPING!

After doing some more research, I found out that the City and States jurisdiction only applies to vessels "operating" upon the waters of this state, as per:

Florida Statue 327.58 Jurisdiction.—The safety regulations included under this chapter shall apply to all vessels, except as specifically excluded, "operating" upon the waters of this state.

https://d2g8igdw686xgo.cloudfront.ne...6532930_r.jpeg

Otherwise the jurisdiction falls under the United States Coast Guard, who I have seen out there plenty of times and haven't received a single ticket from, obviously because my light was working and they aren't trying to illegally run boats out of places they are allowed to be.

https://d2g8igdw686xgo.cloudfront.ne...5985858_r.jpeg
https://d2g8igdw686xgo.cloudfront.ne...7984000_r.jpeg

..."jurisdiction of the United States includes territories and territorial waters."

If the U.S. Coast Guard gave me the tickets, that would be fine as they have the jurisdiction to do that. But they didn't because my light actually was working. But even if my light wasn't working, the City Police do not have the jurisdiction to issue me these tickets, as per the law.

There is even a section of the law that states:

327.60 Local regulations; limitations -
 (2) This chapter and chapter 328 do not prevent the adoption of any ordinance or local regulation relating to "operation" of vessels, except that a county or municipality "may not enact, continue in effect, or enforce any ordinance or local regulation":
...
(f) Regulating the anchoring of vessels outside the marked boundaries of mooring fields permitted as provided in s. 327.40, except for:
1. Live-aboard vessels; ...

https://d2g8igdw686xgo.cloudfront.ne...9176268_r.jpeg

This section of the law clearly states that THEY ARE allowed to adopt ordinances and regulations relating to the "OPERATION" of vessels...
and MAY NOT enact, continue in effect, or enforce any ordinance or local regulation:
(f)  Regulating the anchoring of vessels outside the marked boundaries of mooring fields permitted as provided...

Ballard Park is not a mooring field and my boat was not a live-aboard. The state law is clear, if you are not "OPERATING", you are under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Coast Guard, NOT the states jurisdiction.

Over the next few weeks, the same officer continually came to my home and issued me tickets for the same thing (my working anchor light). In total, I have been given over 30 tickets, about $2,500 dollars, in a span of a little over a month, for my "working anchor light". Which they do not even have the jurisdiction to issue.

After the second round of tickets, the officer showed up to my home with more and more police, I assume it was to show these other officers who I am so that they could mess with me, because he is a water cop and not on the streets. On the last occasion they showed up with 3 police cars, to give me "anchor light tickets." It does not take 3 police officers to give me some light tickets. This is not how our government is supposed to operate.

I finally decided to sell the boat because I'm tired of waking up to a gang of Officers at my front door issuing me bogus tickets. I am now fighting these tickets and have hired the best attorney's I could find and I would appreciate any help from any other boaters or really anybody. This is wrong on so many levels. The problem is most of us can't afford the time or the money to fight something like this.

If the United States Coast Guard issued me a ticket, I bet they would have given me time to fix it, kinda like how you have a month or so to fix a headlight if it goes out. They haven't given me a ticket because my light really was working and they aren't trying to run any boats out of places they are legally allowed to be.

This blatant extortion attempt needs to be exposed and corrected.

I would appreciate any help from any other boaters or really anybody. This is wrong on so many levels. This is extortion, lack of due process, blatant disregard for the law by our trusted government officials.

This is a straight money grab by our City Police, this is extortion.

THIS IS WRONG! PLEASE HELP ME!

Rockter 01-28-2019 09:40 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Damn it.
Straightforward bullying.

I am the most pro-American Briton I know, but there seems to be an American addiction with regulation that is threatening to overwhelm you.

Let your lawyer loose on it, and sue, and win, and buy another boat.

Don't let them win, friend.

Rockter

ianjoub 01-28-2019 11:02 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by cmac321 (Post 2051579790)

Over the next few weeks, the same officer continually came to my home and issued me tickets for the same thing (my working anchor light). In total, I have been given over 30 tickets, about $2,500 dollars, in a span of a little over a month, for my "working anchor light". Which they do not even have the jurisdiction to issue.

After the second round of tickets, the officer showed up to my home with more and more police, I assume it was to show these other officers who I am so that they could mess with me, because he is a water cop and not on the streets. On the last occasion they showed up with 3 police cars, to give me "anchor light tickets." It does not take 3 police officers to give me some light tickets. This is not how our government is supposed to operate.

No, this is not how our government is supposed to operate.

1. Next time he shows up, call 911. Put a trespassing warrant on him. Tell him in no uncertain terms that if he steps foot on your property again, you will have him arrested.

2. File a complaint in the local police dept./sherrif's dept. against him and all other officers that showed up at your house.

3. Have a good attorney file a lawsuit against his municipality AND HIM PERSONALLY for damages AND PUNITIVE DAMAGES.

This Gestapo crap is what they just pulled on Roger Stone. This can not stand.

https://encyclopedia.ushmm.org/conte...the-socialists

Quote:


First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out—because I was not a socialist.

Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out— because I was not a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

Rockter 01-28-2019 11:48 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Ian :

This "set foot on my property and...." sentiment is an extension of the same motivation of those people down by the lake that want the boat moved.

As for shooting someone dead, well, how the hell will that help resolve anything ????

SeaStar58 01-29-2019 12:55 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I would have just called the local news channels consumer advocate reporter to run with it if I was 100% certain I was right and nothing was wrong with my equipment. You may be surprised what a little quality time on TV can do for bogus ticketing if all they were sighting you for was your anchor light not working appropriately when there was nothing wrong with it.

Is there any chance that its not staying lit all through the night and they may be rightfully ticketing you for a boat in your control not having an operating anchoring light all night long and into the early morning hours shortly before sunrise? Are you also 100% sure that its is actually bright enough to be seen at the required distance?

As for jurisdiction if they are operating under FWC control although part of a local Police unit they may still have jurisdiction over that part of the Eau Gallie River or the Indian River Lagoon depending on where you are moored.

I am next door to the US Coast Guard station near Sand Key and the Local Police, FWC and Coast Guard all have jurisdiction over boating in that area but give way to each other as for jurisdiction over certain offenses, regs, etc.

Threatening harm to a Police Official is an offense that can put you in jail so I would not go that route.

Minnewaska 01-29-2019 06:09 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
First post. Sounds like an awful experience and there is no doubt that Florida has a mission to reduce/eliminate boats on long term random anchorages. I don't like it, but I somewhat understand their motivation. Some are serious eye sores, as you can live aboard a real junker year round down there. We rarely see them up here, once winter sets in. My Father lives in FL and I've seen numerous abandon wrecks on the shore.

Of course, there are wealthy waterfront property owners who have some muscle in this fight too and that's unfair. Nevertheless, the entire population owns the water, not just the boaters, and we're grossly outnumbered.

Not to take away from your strife, but I suspect there is slightly more to it. The idea that your solar light may not make it through the night is worth considering. Were there any other usage regulations for that anchorage.

If you hired an attorney, what are they doing? Do they agree with your legal assessment of jurisdiction? My gut tells me that a local LEO agency, with any jurisdiction over the water, would be entitled to enforce an anchor light. It might be contained elsewhere. You asked for help, but it's not clear what kind of help you're asking for. If you're looking for a sympathetic ear at the bar, you've got it.

PhilCarlson 01-29-2019 07:15 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
That's horrible! Decided to sell your boat and lose out on that experience with your son becasue of someone with more power than compassion, and complicit, corrupt authorities.

The Barracks Lawer in my says you have a viable civil claim once you get the citations thrown out.

There is absolutely no reason those citations could not have been delivered by mail. None. You were being bullied and intimidated from the outset. If there is another encounter at your home, I would suggest calmly pointing that out and asserting that there is no reason for the officer, or half his crew, to be on your doorstep.

The suggestion about warning the officer about shooring him for tresspass is an exceptionally bad idea. It would fly in Texas, not so much in Florida. Better to call 911. Who knows if the guy is even on duty.

I think you have been damaged. I think you have a civil claim against the city, the PD, possibly the cop personally (was he on duty? or was he doing a favor for his waterfront owning, sailboat hating friend...), and possibly the people who complained in the first place. I seem to recall something about being able to face your accuser (maybe that doesn't apply, but you may be able to get some mileage out of it.)

I hope you run over the top of them, and I hope to see this in the news. Make them buy you a bigger boat, and a boat slip.

Don L 01-29-2019 07:54 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I think it's a total waste of time to chase this "operate" word thing.

The thing you need to prove and show is it that you are allowed to be anchored when you are and you are operating and showing the correct anchor light.

Sal Paradise 01-29-2019 08:52 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I looked at the chart and there is a small and reportedly very poor anchorage on the opposite side of the basin from the park at the end of the channel called Eau Gallie. Is that where your boat was??

I am sure there are some people who are politically connected on the other end of this. I would read up as much as I could about the judge, and find a very savvy local lawyer. You need to read up on the local ordinances and the harbor plan. I suspect the anchor light thing is either a clue that they local ordinances are insufficient, or its the usual local racket. Either way, they don't want your boat there and they know how to write violations.

That said, do not over react..... ianjoub that is the stupidest comment I have ever read on sailnet. A good way to end up in jail for a long time or dead. Over a ticket for an anchor light.

As you have sold the boat, and essentially complied, then you just want the $2500 reduced to $50 and walk away. I think if you get a good lawyer and you make enough of an argument then that is the best result you can hope for. Good luck. I hate Florida.

SeaStar58 01-29-2019 09:36 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Sal - Unfortunately some people do seem to have a knack for getting on the wrong side of FWC and the local Police however most folks I know at the Sailing Center have very few problems with them. Police, FWC and Coast Guard officers who visit us have never been a problem and are always polite and reasonable. Most are happy to work with you through any issues that develop if you sincerely ask them what you can do to become compliant with a reg they feel you have fallen short on.

Pushing the issue on leaving what sounds like a trailer sailor out on the Eau Gallie River or the Indian River Lagoon may a bit much especially if the light in question is not actually an approved anchoring light but a home center solar patio walkway light that may or may not be up to the tasking of staying lit bright enough from dusk to dawn. We have plenty of snips of the various regs and such that are believed to apply here but nothing showing how and where the boat is moored or of the offending light making it harder to determine what the situation actually is like.

Police do not usually come with backup to issue tickets unless there was a situation during prior interactions to warrant it such as a belligerent attitude, excess profanity, etc. Most will send notices of non-compliance in the mail first or tag the boat with a notice of violation and then show up only after those are ignored for a lengthy period of time. That the officer had a fist full on both occasions would make it appear that the boat is not being regularly maintained and is being left out on the water unattended for extended periods of time. People moor their boats like that and abandon them too regularly in Florida so that its become a dumping ground of derelict boats which is also likely behind them aggressively going after unofficial mooring fields in the inlet near the park.

danvon 01-29-2019 10:28 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I'm surprised he didn't try to give you a load of crap for not having a day shape displayed.

Seriously, you do need to be able to show that your anchor light met the requirements. If so you might be able to get the tickets dropped if your lawyer can frame it to the judge in the right way. The fact that you let a huge number of them accumulate is not going to help though. And I agree that i'd let the jurisdiction argument go. There are few thing that judges hate more than claims that "the police don't have jurisdiction over me/my property/etc."

Also, talk to your lawyer about any possible effect on your drivers' license. I don't know Florida law but in some places these unpaid tickets might affect renewal or even suspension of the license.

Sal Paradise 01-29-2019 10:33 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Seastar I buy that. I have found the same thing. Unfortunately I have also found the opposite. But I can sort of read between the lines, and I agree with much of what you say.

Maine Sail 01-29-2019 10:51 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by cmac321
He was claiming I did not have an anchor light. I immediately went out to fix the anchor light and to my surprise the anchor light was actually working. The light is a solar powered light and it can be seen in the boat picture at the top of the mast.

While I agree 100% that this is simply bullying, I see a few potential problems if you go to fight this:

#1 You will need to prove your "solar light" meets the very stringent rules for navigation lights. If it is not a USCG "certifed" or ABYC A-16 certifed navigation light, one that is tested for COLREGS compliance, there is a very high chance it does not meet the navigation lights requirements and would be disqualified as an anchor light. The fact that it could not be seen easily may not way in your favor.

Rule 20 Application: (e) The lights and shapes specified in these Rules shall comply with the provisions of Annex I [to these Regulations | of these Rules].

Annex I is in the CFR Code of Federal Regulations (33 CFR 84) and spells out very clearly what it means to have a legally compliant navigation light. It must meet color, intensity, horizontal and vertical compliance sectors. Imanna Labs, one of the independet USCG/ABYC A-16 testing authorities, fails "navigation lights" fairly regularly and these are from companies who actually believe they have built a light that they believe complies enough to pay to have it tested.

#2 Unless you are technically anchored in a designated "§ 109.10 Special anchorage area" then an anchor light would technically be required. While this is often not enforced, especially in local mooring fields, if a legal authority wanted to push they issue they usually have the law on their side to do so. On the other side of that, if where you anchored is designated a special anchorage you are not required to show an anchor light at all so the case could just be thrown out. There are not a ton of defined special anchorages but do look into it.

midwesterner 01-29-2019 10:53 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Rockter (Post 2051579824)
Ian :

This "set foot on my property and...." sentiment is an extension of the same motivation of those people down by the lake that want the boat moved.

As for shooting someone dead, well, how the hell will that help resolve anything ????

It looks like IanJoub edited his post and wisely removed any suggestion of shooting anybody. Yeah, bad idea.

As for calling 911 to report some police officers to,....other police officers. I can't imagine that going well. Thinking that they will respond by saying, "What, some over zealous police officers have been harassing you? That's unacceptable! We'll send some of our police officers over to talk with those police officers and tell them to stop". That's not likely to to happen.

A call to 911 like that is about as likely to be appreciated as the people who call 911 to complain that McDonalds gave them cold french fries.

midwesterner 01-29-2019 11:03 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by cmac321 (Post 2051579790)
I purchased a 24' Sailboat around the beginning of September 2018, with plans to teach my son how to sail. I took the boat to the Ballard Park area of Melbourne, FL and moored it out. Ballard Park is a well know anchorage for boats.

Everything was fine for the first month or so, and then one day a Melbourne Police Officer shows up to my home with a handful of tickets for violation of:


This is a straight money grab by our City Police, this is extortion.

THIS IS WRONG! PLEASE HELP ME!

CMAC321, I noticed that you just joined this group and this is your first and only post. Is this your only reason for coming on here? How about the questions that people have posted on this thread? Is your anchor light an approved anchor light? Is the battery lasting through the night? We are curious to know the full story.

Sal Paradise 01-29-2019 12:07 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 

Skipper Jer 01-29-2019 12:14 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Post a copy of the ticket showing the ordinance that was violated or just site it here.

hellosailor 01-29-2019 02:58 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
There is so much wrong with the OP's original rant.

It doesn't mention if he's a resident, filed as a homesteader, or a snowbird, or whatnot. If he is a resident of the same jurisdiction...and a voter...there are always local politicians looking to score points. District leader, assemblyman, whoever. And the local TV and newspaper "help me" contacts are always looking for something. Coming to SN and *****ing about it...comes off more like there's some agenda.

As to the anchor light being USCG approved--that's of no real importance. Lights just have to meet USCG standards, they DO NOT have to be approved, as has been discussed so many times before. Usually, for small craft, that means "Go someplace that is two miles away on the map. Look for your boat while someone on board blinks the link. Can you see the light?" and if the answer is yes, that's all the USCG requires. I'd bet the USCG could be asked about that sufficiency, in writing, and they'd pretty much reply "Yes that is sufficient" which is all you'd need to show a judge. Or whatever bozo adjudicates those tickets.

Then of course the OP apparently doesn't come from America...where we know that crooked cops can and should be formally charged with misfeasance. In some places there are particular "police review boards" to file charges with, in others, you go through the local DA's office, either way it is at no charge. You don't need to hire a lawyer to report a criminal violation and insist on prosecution. Failure to prosecute escalates into misfeasance and malfeasance and more trouble for the folks who fail to do it.

I filed charges against a cop (who was going off shift soon) who refused to give a drug/sobriety test to the guy who ran into my car. Three weeks later I get a call "from his sergeant" saying he's a good cop he just wanted to go off shift, couldn't I just drop it? I said hell no, I didn't care how good a cop he was, he was letting someone thoroughly drugged stay on the road and he could kill somebody next time.

Either you are a citizen, and you do some work about running the place, or you're a rube, at best, and not entitled to complain about the way you've left others running it.

Minnewaska 01-29-2019 03:09 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Maybe it will take a bit more time for the OP to weigh back in, but it's not out of the question we've been trolled.

SeaStar58 01-29-2019 08:51 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Sal Paradise (Post 2051579884)
Seastar I buy that. I have found the same thing. Unfortunately I have also found the opposite. But I can sort of read between the lines, and I agree with much of what you say.

Most police officers will play nice with you if you play nice with them is really what I have seen.

I did serve as a police data consultant in Florida so have spent some extended time assisting officers with court, jail and prison data systems on a State, County and Local level so I may be a bit Pro-Police due to that. In all that association I had not once encountered a situation where the police went out of their way to harass or be unfair but found quite the opposite to be true that for the most part they go out of their way to give even known convicted felons fair and decent treatment even when the person they are dealing with starts to cross the line. Unfortunately its not the hundreds of thousands of calls for service done above and beyond the call of duty that get National attention but the small handful every few months or years that fall short that are used to typecast all officers.

This situation appears to have gaps as there should have been at least notices left on the boat duplicated by the ones the officer showed up with at the door on both calls. Yes this all could just be a troll for someones amusement to get police haters all in a frenzy. The ticketing software should have triggered the visits by the police due to past due response on the tickets. For the past 20 to 30 years most police forces in any community with more that a small handful of officers will be using a dedicated police and jail management package of some kind tied in with the courts along with 911 to manage and track all of this. This isn't 1950's Mayberry.

Sal Paradise 01-29-2019 09:10 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by SeaStar58 (Post 2051579994)
Most police officers will play nice with you if you play nice with them is really what I have seen.

I did serve as a police data consultant in Florida so have spent some extended time assisting officers with court, jail and prison data systems on a State, County and Local level so I may be a bit Pro-Police due to that. In all that association I had not once encountered a situation where the police went out of their way to harass or be unfair but found quite the opposite to be true that for the most part they go out of their way to give even known convicted felons fair and decent treatment even when the person they are dealing with starts to cross the line. Unfortunately its not the hundreds of thousands of calls for service done above and beyond the call of duty that get National attention but the small handful every few months or years that fall short that are used to typecast all officers.

This situation appears to have gaps as there should have been at least notices left on the boat duplicated by the ones the officer showed up with at the door on both calls. Yes this all could just be a troll for someones amusement to get police haters all in a frenzy. The ticketing software should have triggered the visits by the police due to past due response on the tickets. For the past 20 to 30 years most police forces in any community with more that a small handful of officers will be using a dedicated police and jail management package of some kind tied in with the courts along with 911 to manage and track all of this. This isn't 1950's Mayberry.

I have found its better to consider the facts of the situation rather than make assumptions.

Here in NY we have about 1000 political units, either towns or cities. Quite often the officials make little money, do it for the prestige, or the graft. And just as often they are elected to one term and then gone, with no training ever. I'm very serious. I myself am a sworn town official. As a result of these municipal boards, the oversight of the police departments is uneven and sometimes extremely negligent, or is considered an inside track to political support. Despite this incompetent oversight, and despite the widespread ignorance of our uneducated town justices the LE officers for the most part hold up decent standards, However, there are many officers out there on boats and on land, essentially given very broad powers and very little meaningful oversight. The results of that on any group of humans will lead to some abuses of power and it does. The police on the Hudson got a lot of very bad publicity for their habit of stopping any boat with bikinis on board and many other equally egregious behaviors. As a result they themselves moderated their behavior but you never know what you may get. Many, if not most cops, if they put the lights on, write you a very expensive ticket. And enforcement is often very uneven to say the least.

So, as I wrote, I have seen both good and not so good.

capta 01-29-2019 09:10 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Ah. Another citizen being treated with respect and dignity by the law enforcement offices of the state of Florida! Absolutely shocking! NOT!

hellosailor 01-29-2019 09:58 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Seastar-
Mayberry is still out there. I've known a number of hard working underpaid good LEOs. And, it only takes one apple to ruin the barrel. Or perhaps you never heard of NYC's Sullivan Commission, to reform the NYPD? Or the NY Metropolitans, the first NYC PD which was so corrupt that the state shut it down after the Civil War. Replaced from scratch with the current NYPD. The NYPD doesn't like to mention that in their online history.
Long time ago a friend of mine was ticketed by a friendly town cop for not having his car registration sticker. He'd just had the car reinspected and the station was out of stickers, so they stamped his registration card--which was all that the law required at the time. Stamp or sticker, either one.
So I go to traffic court with him, he's got the certified motor vehicle laws with him. Five guys are declared guilty and told to pay the exact same ticket. he gets up, shows the "magistrate" the law, dismissed. What about the other five guys? Yeah, they had already been found guilty and had to pay--even though the magistrate AND the cop both apparently knew this was against the law. It was a racket they worked to make money, even the ABA has remarked that many if not most upstate NY villages have similar problems and if they're innocent--they're too stupid to be in office.

In the OP's case? Dunno. Never spent time fraternizing with the folks in Melbourne FL. Wouldn't want to place any bets on it though, given the way that Florida has so many places where the rich really want to get rid of the vagrant boat trash. (Or anyone who can't afford a megayacht in a proper slip.)

SeaStar58 01-29-2019 11:19 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Sal - Since we were talking about a situation in Florida where I have served multiple jurisdictions I am considering the facts here and not in NYC. Yes there are small towns in Florida with only a handful of officers which I clearly stated were not as sophisticated but Melbourne, whom I have worked with on some projects, is not really a small town like Mayberry with it having a population of over 82,000 and 169 sworn police officers. Their Marine Patrol division works with the County Sheriff, Coast Guard and Homeland Security. Their City Boating code regulates where you may and may not moor a boat along with allows for abandoned or unprotected boats to be ticketed or removed and destroyed. They are concerned with people mooring boats and leaving them unattended on public waters where they weather, rot and sink to then be abandoned which is a felony offense in Florida.

This is the area in question off of Ballard Park and its not a very big waterway with plenty of room for mooring boats plus it appears there are several sunken vessels already out there so potentially a known trouble spot with a public park, businesses, marinas and yes private homes in the area:
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Ba...!4d-80.6249955

boatpoker 01-29-2019 11:43 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by SeaStar58 (Post 2051580012)
This is the area in question off of Ballard Park and its not a very big waterway with plenty of room for mooring boats plus it appears there are several sunken vessels already out there so potentially a known trouble spot with a public park, businesses, marinas and yes private homes in the area:

Anchor off Ballard park on occasion on the snowbird route, Last time in May 2018. Not a lot of room but have not seen any sunken boats in that anchorage since my first stop there in about 96'. I have been slightly harassed in the Melbourne area a few times while anchored. Never stayed more than one night. Not at all a welcoming area for cruisers.

SeaStar58 01-30-2019 12:04 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by boatpoker (Post 2051580016)
Anchor off Ballard park on occasion on the snowbird route, Last time in May 2018. Not a lot of room but have not seen any sunken boats in that anchorage since my first stop there in about 96'. I have been slightly harassed in the Melbourne area a few times while anchored. Never stayed more than one night. Not at all a welcoming area for cruisers.

Satellite view appears to show a number of submerged boats West of the park inside the inlet so either they are very proactive about cleaning them up or you've been very fortunate to not have run into them. Check out the Google Maps Satellite view at the link I provided so you can see what I was describing.

No it does not look like a great destination or stopping point for a cruiser unless you make a reservation at one of the marinas. I have not been involved there since they dismantled the Space Shuttle program when I was working on that project with Embry-Riddle, NASA and BAE. Yes I have worn a lot of different hats over the years.

boatpoker 01-30-2019 12:23 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by SeaStar58 (Post 2051580022)
Satellite view appears to show a number of submerged boats West of the park inside the inlet so either they are very proactive about cleaning them up or you've been very fortunate to not have run into them. Check out the Google Maps Satellite view at the link I provided so you can see what I was describing.

No it does not look like a great destination or stopping point for a cruiser unless you make a reservation at one of the marinas. I have not been involved there since they dismantled the Space Shuttle program when I was working on that project with Embry-Riddle, NASA and BAE. Yes I have worn a lot of different hats over the years.

I went to Google Maps and see only three boats at anchor and all appear to be floating, this is typical of what I have seen since 96'. It is a nice anchorage but both sides of the Indian River (Ballard Park & Dragon Point) in that area are well known among snowbirders for mild harrassment by watercops and making it difficult to get ashore even for a stroll. It is made quite clear that we are not welcome.

We usually anchor around the yellow "X"

Don L 01-30-2019 08:30 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Heck I've anchored in Melbourne 5 times the last 2 years and never even seen a water cop. In fact I've never have a Florida water cop ask me anything, ever!

lilipad 01-30-2019 08:37 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Great research, remind me not to get into an argument with you in the future! Love the no trespassing sign idea. It will be interesting to see what the judge does with the tickets. Sounds like your neighbors don't like the boat anchored in front of their homes.

Fight on!

hellosailor 01-30-2019 09:07 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I see two questionable objects in the water, not clear at all as to what they might be, SW of Ballard Park, but that's about it. Considering this is a 2019 image and there are probably wrecks from last years's hurricanes still around, the photographic "proof" says nothing, and shows reasonably unobstructed waters, IMO.

Seastar, you say this is FL not NYC. Right. Do you have any idea how many NYPD officers quit (not just retire, but quit) and move down to FL every year because they feel there is too much pressure on them to "behave" in NYC? I knew one who has on his second reprimand and talking about moving down to FL where things were more lax and he wouldn't be questioned as hard on what he did.

Then there's a report, maybe 2-3 years old, where the FDLE investigated some 2000 officer-involved shootings, including deaths, over something like the last decade. The official conclusion was that ALL OF THEM were justified, no mistakes had ever been made. Really? No mistakes at all, ever?

There's good cops, and crooked cops, and cops who should be in a simpler line of work, all over the world. Nothing exclusive about cops, or Florida, that way.

The OP's complaint was that he was being written up, without warning, for a violation that didn't really exist. That kind of bogus enforcement campaign happens, sad to say, in too many places. Its called politics.

And lacking all the facts, there's still no way to say what the real problem is.

boatpoker 01-30-2019 09:17 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by hellosailor (Post 2051580074)
I see two questionable objects in the water, not clear at all as to what they might be, SW of Ballard Park, but that's about it.

Those two "objects" are day marks for the channel.

Minnewaska 01-30-2019 09:43 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Unless, or until, the OP ever comes back to add a second post, the story leaves me feeling like there is something more to it. Yes, there is Prosecutorial and LEO misconduct, but it's the exception to the rule, despite all the anecdotes.

Assuming all the facts we've read are true (no reason to disbelieve), something has caused the LEOs to go to great lengths to enforce what amount to parking tickets. I am willing to assume they don't just randomly mobilize like that. Why they did is not at all clear. Could be legit reason, could be an influential waterfront owner, could be a local mission to harass the anchorage. Doubt we'll ever know.

The discussion reminds me of a great Ted Talk, given my a head of some health department in the Netherlands, as I recall. It was on what he described as ignorance. He surveyed all sorts of social, environmental, etc questions and most people answered with a bias toward the negative, when the stats showed the answer was actually positive. From memory, they were questions like.... do more or fewer woman get good jobs, do more or fewer people die from catastrophic weather events, and so on. Most people thought things were worse, when they are actual much better. His premise was, if you don't know a broad answer about society, it's probably better than you think. Good lesson.

Sal Paradise 01-30-2019 09:44 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by SeaStar58 (Post 2051580012)
Sal - Since we were talking about a situation in Florida where I have served multiple jurisdictions I am considering the facts here and not in NYC. Yes there are small towns in Florida with only a handful of officers which I clearly stated were not as sophisticated but Melbourne, whom I have worked with on some projects, is not really a small town like Mayberry with it having a population of over 82,000 and 169 sworn police officers. Their Marine Patrol division works with the County Sheriff, Coast Guard and Homeland Security. Their City Boating code regulates where you may and may not moor a boat along with allows for abandoned or unprotected boats to be ticketed or removed and destroyed. They are concerned with people mooring boats and leaving them unattended on public waters where they weather, rot and sink to then be abandoned which is a felony offense in Florida.

This is the area in question off of Ballard Park and its not a very big waterway with plenty of room for mooring boats plus it appears there are several sunken vessels already out there so potentially a known trouble spot with a public park, businesses, marinas and yes private homes in the area:
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Ba...!4d-80.6249955

Ok, I got it Seastar. You know, I understand that. I've been around, including to Florida many times. As I indicated in my previous post, " I can read between the lines and I... agree.." Apparently that was not clear enough for you. So -
Since you must go on insisting that you have inside information that the Melbourne police are perfect human beings in every way, and this can never be questioned, then that is the end of our discussion.

http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2012...cdc-s6-c10.jpg

SeaStar58 01-30-2019 10:05 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by boatpoker (Post 2051580084)
Those two "objects" are day marks for the channel.

Yes there are a couple of markers out in the intercoastal waterway and several more inside the river along with 4 boat shaped submerged objects in the river. If you check the street view from the bridge its not that big a channel with a lot of room for long term storage of boats to be left unattended for weeks or months except at the marinas or planned moorings.

SeaStar58 01-30-2019 10:18 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Sal Paradise (Post 2051580098)
Ok, I got it Seastar. You know, I understand that. I've been around, including to Florida many times. As I indicated in my previous post, " I can read between the lines and I... agree.." Apparently that was not clear enough for you. So -
Since you must go on insisting that you have inside information that the Melbourne police are perfect human beings in every way, and this can never be questioned, then that is the end of our discussion.

No not perfect just that their not all as bad as you make them out to be. The majority are pretty good and a lot better than many folks out there with an anti law enforcement chip on their shoulders want to believe. Most are just responding to a work load put out by a computer system or dispatcher that tells them take these delinquent tickets and serve them or check out a call for service. I agreed that some are bad but you do not want to be one of them standing before a review board anywhere that I have worked.

capta 01-30-2019 10:29 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by SeaStar58 (Post 2051580128)
No not perfect just that their not all as bad as you make them out to be. The majority are pretty good and a lot closer to perfect than many folks out there with an anti law enforcement chip on their shoulders want to believe. I agreed that some are bad but you do not want to be one of them standing before a review board anywhere that I have worked.

Honestly, from your posts, it does not seem you are spending enough time on the water around the state of Florida to make this statement. Any association a person might have with law enforcement personnel ashore has very little relationship to a citizen/LEO encounter on the water.
IMO, it seems that most water LEO's are the 'cowboys' of the department and stray as close to or over the line, probably much more frequently than the department as a whole. Perhaps the 'bad apples' end up in the marine department of most departments to minimize their contact with the general public?
But, since I've spent around 90% of my time in Fla on the water, perhaps I have a different view than most.

caberg 01-30-2019 10:53 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
In my observation of the local/state LEOs on the water around here, if I could see that they actually did anything useful, I would not have a problem with them. There is a state police boat operating from my marina, same LEO all season long, the boat is well over (if not multiples of) $100k, the LEO is probably in his late 50s, grossly overweight, and I've never seen him do anything but cruise around on nice days, and conduct random safety inspections (but mostly he just cruises around burning gobs of fuel with his twin 250hp evinrudes). He seems like a nice guy from passing in the marina, but talk about a waste of taxpayer money and resources. I get the sense that he landed this sweet gig based on his seniority and he's more than happy to essentially do nothing while earning a nice salary and pension.

I guess this guy is better than the younger aggressive power-tripping not-very-smart cop, which there are plenty of around here on land. Something about the profession just calls to this type.

TakeFive 01-30-2019 11:34 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
OP is a seagull - flew in, crapped all over, and flew away.

I'm as skeptical of law enforcement's intentions as anyone, but his rant has enough vagueness and apparent slant to drive a truck through. I'm even more skeptical of him, and wondering how much of an eyesore his boat must have been. While I disagree with the nasty NY/NJ millionaires with their "get out of my view" attitude toward innocent cruisers, I'm also sympathetic toward legitimate concerns that people have over derelict boats that get plopped down for months at a time with potentially inadequate ground tackle. I wouldn't want to have to fork over my tax dollars for raising these boats from the bottom, or repairing the damage that they cause when they come loose.

More facts need to be known, especially since this guy came to with an axe to grind, and has done nothing to establish any credibility with our online community.

Minnesail 01-30-2019 01:38 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Google composites several images together, what you're seeing are not sunken boats but boats that were in transit in one of the satellite images.

For instance, there isn't really an airplane at the bottom of our local lake:
https://stmedia.stimg.co/nokomis-jet...fit=clip&h=426
Why does Google Earth show a plane at the bottom of Lake Harriet?

Here is where my boat is moored. Each boat has multiple images as it swings around the ball:
Lake Nokomis

midwesterner 01-30-2019 02:32 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TakeFive (Post 2051580148)
OP is a seagull - flew in, crapped all over, and flew away.

I'm as skeptical of law enforcement's intentions as anyone, but his rant has enough vagueness and apparent slant to drive a truck through. I'm even more skeptical of him, and wondering how much of an eyesore his boat must have been. .......

.......More facts need to be known, especially since this guy came to with an axe to grind, and has done nothing to establish any credibility with our online community.

Yes, he joined yesterday and his one and only post is his rant posted as his "introduction" , and he's not been back since to answer our questions and offer more information.

MarkofSeaLife 01-30-2019 03:03 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by midwesterner (Post 2051580192)
Yes, he joined yesterday and his one and only post is his rant posted as his "introduction" , and he's not been back since to answer our questions and offer more information.



I think he lost interest in this and other forums he has posted in when the GoFundMe link won't work.

Quote:


I'm made a goFundMe to try to get some help. It won't let me post a link to it

We do require members to be around for a bit before they can pillage our pockets :grin


Mark

Skipper Jer 01-30-2019 03:19 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
If he would just post one more time to answer all of our questions I would consider donating to his fund.

boatpoker 01-30-2019 03:21 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by SeaStar58 (Post 2051580112)
Yes there are a couple of markers out in the intercoastal waterway and several more inside the river along with 4 boat shaped submerged objects in the river. If you check the street view from the bridge its not that big a channel with a lot of room for long term storage of boats to be left unattended for weeks or months except at the marinas or planned moorings.

Have to be Houdini to hide a sunken boat in water this shallow. If they sunk in the channel no one could get out of this harbour. The two markers you seem to imply may be sinkers are clearly marked on the chart.

PS. Our keel is often buried in mud in the area immediately west of the park where the chart shows 3'.

capta 01-30-2019 04:44 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Minnesail (Post 2051580168)
Google composites several images together, what you're seeing are not sunken boats but boats that were in transit in one of the satellite images.

For instance, there isn't really an airplane at the bottom of our local lake:
https://stmedia.stimg.co/nokomis-jet...fit=clip&h=426
Why does Google Earth show a plane at the bottom of Lake Harriet?

Here is where my boat is moored. Each boat has multiple images as it swings around the ball:
Lake Nokomis

I found this post to be very interesting.
I sure am glad there are some people on here that have enough actual knowledge of what gets posted that the misinformation gets quashed pretty quickly. Thank you.

TakeFive 01-30-2019 04:51 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I kept my old boat on the Delaware River, literally 1/2 mile from the end of runway 9R/27L at PHL. Google satellite photos would frequently show airplane shadows on the river surface, as well as the jets flying overhead. They would come and go as Google posted updated imagery.

Sal Paradise 01-30-2019 05:33 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TakeFive (Post 2051580148)
OP is a seagull - flew in, crapped all over, and flew away.

While I disagree with the nasty NY/NJ millionaires with their "get out of my view" attitude toward innocent cruisers, I'm also sympathetic toward legitimate concerns that people have over derelict boats....blah..blahbety blah..

Is this the standard putdown around PA? Why are you dragging NY into this? Jealous that PA has no oceanfront?

TakeFive 01-30-2019 07:36 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Sal Paradise (Post 2051580242)
Is this the standard putdown around PA? Why are you dragging NY into this? Jealous that PA has no oceanfront?

They can come from anywhere, but the comments I hear from those who live down there is that people bring the fast-paced northeast city attitudes with them, especially the multi-millionaires with the walls and moats around their houses. Having lived there, I know what they mean. You can insert any city/state you want. No stereotype is universal or perfect. I should have omitted the reference.

MarcusJames 01-30-2019 08:04 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
sad

Minnewaska 01-31-2019 05:42 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I just saw the OP's gofundme page. $10 raised toward a $3500 goal. Seems most think this is BS. I found the page, via another forum, where the entire OP is cut and paste. Even the GFM page is the same cut and paste.

Why in the world would everyone else pay for what the OP thinks are illegitimate fines? If they're legitimate, all the more silly.

I'm guessing we'll never see the OP again.

Ironic that a money grab was attempted to address an accused money grab.

Don L 01-31-2019 08:37 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I'll all for the police giving out tickets to the run down derelict eyesore boats. It pisses me off as a cruiser that I can't find a good place to anchor a lot of times because people have basically abandoned their boat in the only place available. The number of places along the water I haven't been able to stop at and see from this is huge. Yet most threads about the issue, like the OP in this one, try to make it seen it's the rich landowners and the State just being a-holes.

cdy 01-31-2019 09:35 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Irregardless if the original poster is full of it - I believe it will be harder and harder to keep a boat on your own mooring or anchored in most waters in Florida in the future - if you are a just traveling through and staying on the boat - less of an issue but if you are using the mooring/anchor as storage of the boat vs getting a slip ( less and less available) you are going to get more harassment - I kept my old Pearson 26 on my own mooring in Cocoa by the 520 bridge - Irma wiped out most but year and a half later a lot back - just before I sold my boat after the hurricane - got a ticket for no anchor light - in 2 years before never a problem - was over that way a couple of months ago and talked with a guy living on his boat - since the hurricane a lot more visits from the cops on compliance - plus the guy complained the cop ran his name for priors /warrants - which he had none outstanding - just seems to be that they are picking up the harassment - I am sure at the urging of local home owners - there are problems on both sides - homeowners who complain but really don't have any legal right to - and boaters that use the area for storage for boats that are clearly not very seaworthy - and when the next hurricane comes and they wash ashore - the city will have to pay to remove many of them. Currently I would say there are 4 boats in the anchorage - that are in need of attention - a couple have been for sale for some time - but clearly not worth much or anything ( even the J30) so they just sit out there ,anchored, deteriorating a little bit each day.

TakeFive 01-31-2019 09:56 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Now that they've experienced what damage and expense can be caused by long-term anchoring of boats, I can fully understand the community's bias against long-term anchoring of unattended boats. This concern seems reasonable, and separate from the "get out of my view" attitude of the millionaires with waterfront mansions.

However, also I believe in access to waterways by cruisers, especially where safe haven is needed. Cruisers who stay on their boats overnight are able to check their ground tackle on a regular basis, re-set if they're dragging, and tend to any issues before they become a hazard. As long as they comply with non-discharge requirements, they're harmless.

So the "middle ground" here might be to prohibit overnight unattended anchoring, with a possible exclusion for permanent moorings which are subject to inspections (which would be funded by fees from mooring permits). Cruisers could be allowed to anchor for up to ~14 days, but must be on the boat overnight. Law enforcement could do spot checks by posting a notice on unoccupied boats requiring a call-in. If the occupants don't call in, then they are presumed to have left the boat overnight, and subject to penalties.

I am concerned that the few bad actors (cruisers/liveaboards who discharge sewage, or long-term derelict boats at anchor) spoil it for everyone else.

I've never been down to these areas of FL to witness things for myself, but as a fair-weather weekender and arm-chair cruiser, I think some middle ground needs to be found.

cdy 01-31-2019 10:16 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Its a bit of a slippery slope - given in on some regulations - land owners are going to want more until they have eliminated any boats using their "backyard" Ideally all moored boats would be seaworthy and have at least liability insurance - something cars must have. In Florida and elsewhere I assume there are many who live on their boat who are not really boaters - the boat never moves - and probably is not capable of moving - its more of a hobo like lifestyle for some - lots do it at slips also but they arent anchored behind someones house - to get liability insurance - the boat might need to be surveyed - the owner will probably have to have decent credit -most insurance companies check it before issuing policies - many arent going to be able to do that - so whats the answer? - kick them off the boat - impound the boat? I don't know.

Don L 01-31-2019 10:35 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
The landowners always get the blame, and yes some are the blame for the water cops checking on boats. But I bet the city/town itself is just as much at "fault".

But when it comes right to it, so what???? If your boat is in compliance it is in compliance!

Far as the water cops coming by over and over to "harass" you, I believe that the current law in Florida is that if they come "inspect" you they are suppose to give you a sticker than covers you for a period. If I were to be living at anchor (and I've spent 3 weeks at a time at anchor in places in Florida, but never had a water cop come by) I would know and print out the important parts of the law. I bet the cops acturally know the laws and are mostly just figuring a boater doesn't.

Don L 01-31-2019 10:43 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by cdy (Post 2051580424)
In Florida and elsewhere I assume there are many who live on their boat who are not really boaters - the boat never moves - and probably is not capable of moving - its more of a hobo like lifestyle for some

It's not really that at all. Before I came down I assumed some of this. But in reality I bet way less than 10% of the permanently anchored boats in Florida have anyone on them or get used on any type of regular basis. They are just abandoned on the water providing a place for the birds to poop on. I've seen people maybe meeting the "hobo" lifestyle, the poor, and the "crazy" on their boats, but again these are overall a very small percentage and are at least maintaining their boat to some degree (yes there's a wide range in how well boater trash maintains their boat).

capta 01-31-2019 10:54 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Don0190 (Post 2051580434)
I bet the cops acturally know the laws and are mostly just figuring a boater doesn't.

I believe this is exactly what most us of are objecting to on this thread! It is what gives these h2o LEO's such a bad rep and what makes them so objectionable to most. There is good policing and bad and surely your statement is the bad. The law is not a club with which a LEO should browbeat the citizenry.

Don L 01-31-2019 12:06 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by capta (Post 2051580438)
I believe this is exactly what most us of are objecting to on this thread! It is what gives these h2o LEO's such a bad rep and what makes them so objectionable to most. There is good policing and bad and surely your statement is the bad. The law is not a club with which a LEO should browbeat the citizenry.

I'm sorry if you see following the laws as a "club" to "blowbeat" people. I see the law as the law!

Far as this thread where "most us of are objecting" it hasn't been shown that the law is being followed. In fact to me the OP trying this wording run around stuff in post #1 to me is more of a suggestion that his anchor light is not in accordance with the law. If it is all he has to do is show that, which I wrote way back in the beginning.

jephotog 01-31-2019 12:17 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
It is possible the OP has a valid complaint but it is hard to take him too serious as his post comes off as a bit of conspiracy theorist. Maybe he is one of the sovereign citizens.

It is unfortunate that the crowding, and derelict boats have gotten such that the state has to go to extreme measures to make it hard for all boats to exist in public waters.

TakeFive 01-31-2019 12:27 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by cdy (Post 2051580424)
Its a bit of a slippery slope...

I yearn for those quaint days when every attempt at compromise wasn’t dismissed as a “slippery slope”.

capta 01-31-2019 12:33 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Don0190 (Post 2051580466)
I'm sorry if you see following the laws as a "club" to "blowbeat" people. I see the law as the law!.

Using obscure and outdated laws to harass the public has long been a tactic of poor law enforcement.
A good officer should use his judgment to advise the lawbreaker (especially a stranger to the area) of his error and not come on like some jackbooted thug, which way too many water LEO's do, in their bloused pants and combat boots (on a boat no less).
But honestly, you don't really have to break any laws to become a target of many water LEOs, especially in Fla. You just have to be in the wrong place at the right time. However, as is the norm in most jurisdictions these days, it is more about revenue than public safety anyway.

Don L 01-31-2019 12:58 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by capta (Post 2051580482)
Using obscure and outdated laws to harass the public has long been a tactic of poor law enforcement.
.

man we are just talking about an anchor light!!! stop looking for a way to turn it into a fight over something else

there's other forums for ranting about LEOs and 'stuff"

Minnewaska 01-31-2019 01:09 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I remember aggressive water LEO in the NYC metro area. It seemed like sport. On the other hand, the boaters in the NYC metro area were pretty aggressive too. Seemed a competition of wits.

The only water LEO I've ever been in direct contact with in RI have the local marine police (harbormasters), all of which have been polite, helpful and courteous. One even gave us a car ride into town, when we tied up next to them at the town dock in East Greenwich.

There's good and bad.

MarkofSeaLife 01-31-2019 01:29 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TakeFive (Post 2051580478)
I yearn for those quaint days when every attempt at compromise wasn’t dismissed as a “slippery slope”.

That was the flat bit just before the slippery slope.

So it was all your fault!



.

Sal Paradise 01-31-2019 02:40 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I will go back to something I posted earlier in this thread that was misconstrued. Its the town government and its the adopted harbor plan that needs to be looked at. The police, most times, are just the messenger. I am lucky in that my own little corner of the water ( Kingston NY) has adopted a harbor plan that is, I think, very generous in it's allowances for private moorings and anchoring. But all it would take is a pissed off marina owner or some other locals and a weak or corrupt city alderman and we would all be screwed. Planning in the United States is very home rule. It is in NY anyway. But waterways aren't like local neighborhoods where a zoning ordinance or parking regulation is appropriate.

There local laws should also protect rights of access to and from waterways, marine safety and most importantly - freedom of navigation..... vague concepts perhaps but those are MY VALUES, as much as I also value property rights. There should be a fair and logical balance within the law for the greater good. I would favor maritime and riparian rights over private landowners most times, with the exception of derelict boats, boats which are merely dropped in some random location, which block a channel, or which otherwise are detrimental to the public enjoyment of the water.

Don L 01-31-2019 02:58 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Florida doesn't really have this "town" rules problem because the State make the rules.

mstern 01-31-2019 05:13 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Don0190 (Post 2051580562)
Florida doesn't really have this "town" rules problem because the State make the rules.

Wasn't the problem in Florida that the state law empowered the towns/cities to make their own rules (within certain parameters), but that some towns/cities went beyond their mandate?

RegisteredUser 01-31-2019 05:36 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Florida has changed over the decades.
New rules, new residents, new ways.
Aint pirate waters
Will keep on changing.
Dont like the east coast changes, then go to the gulf coast...and wait there. Coming there too
Maybe go back in time....

Sal Paradise 01-31-2019 05:51 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Don0190 (Post 2051580562)
Florida doesn't really have this "town" rules problem because the State make the rules.

'


Looking online some Florida cities claim to have a plan. Good luck finding the actual plan online. I am on the planning board of my town, and a founding member of the riverfront park board. I doubt, no I know I couldn't get any of the other board members to understand how I feel about harbors and waterfront. They are all corporate types and never sail or do anything fun, from what I can tell. Don't talk to them about public access, or quality of life. They look at you like they just don't understand. But you want to talk about corporate sponsors, town revenues, or developers profits and they are all suddenly geniuses.

aa3jy 01-31-2019 06:05 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
According to the SSCA there has been recent Melbourne local municipal activity concerning anchoring..

https://www.ssca.org/content.aspx?pa...dule_id=326864

Sal Paradise 01-31-2019 08:33 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
The guy heading up the meetings on the proposed anti anchoring bill..... I rest my case. LOL However, it makes me think there currently is no anti anchoring bill.


http://spacecoastdaily.com/wp-conten...y-Fine-580.jpg

chef2sail 01-31-2019 10:03 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TakeFive (Post 2051580478)
I yearn for those quaint days when every attempt at compromise wasn’t dismissed as a “slippery slope”.

Long gone...people talk at each other now with very little listening or communication

Lpdiver 02-01-2019 12:42 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Hmmm,

Call me simple; but, when you get a citation you take care of it...period. What ever it takes. If I found myself in this situation I would probably do two things. First I would have a complimentary vessel safety check by the USCG auxillary and if they made no comment about the anchor light I would ask them point blank if it was suitable. Then affix the sticker to the boat indicating that it passed and then go take care of the ticket one way or the other and move on.

It would be a good learning experience for the son and might avert other issues and would give a good rebuttal to any other possible tickets.

LPDiver

Sal Paradise 02-01-2019 05:48 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I agree and that could work. Really you never know what you get with a local judge. It could still boil down to his word ( LEO) against yours. They could say that you changed the light after the ticket.

But, the OP could also take that CG inspection and show it to the officer or prosecutor before the hearing and use it to plea the whole thing down to $50. Especially since he sold the boat and essentially has complied. Speak humbly and say , as you said, that you just need to resolve it in the best possible way. That has worked well for me with tickets.

However, reading the OP, with that level of effort by the police and that level of fines, personally I think they will take a hard line and a lawyer is needed.

TakeFive 02-01-2019 07:47 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
OP received over 30 tickets for a non-compliant anchor light. No matter how great my skepticism of LEAs (especially in Florida), I strongly suspect the problem is his anchor light. It's either non-compliant (<2 nm) or it goes dead before sunrise.

We'll see if his ploy works. White privilege has its limits.

Sal Paradise 02-01-2019 08:25 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
It's not like he accumulated 30 anchor light tickets from 30 departments all over Florida. All of the tickets are from one guy. At least that was my impression.

Many years ago, I had an old car that was semi broke down, in my girlfriends neighborhood. I made it a block from her parents house, clutch went out and I left it for a week. I then got a phone call from the state police saying : "move your car". The police didn't threaten me. They told me. I thanked him for the call. I moved the car and all was good.

That's another way the police deal with these sort of things

jtsailjt 02-01-2019 09:49 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TakeFive (Post 2051580666)
OP received over 30 tickets for a non-compliant anchor light. No matter how great my skepticism of LEAs (especially in Florida), I strongly suspect the problem is his anchor light. It's either non-compliant (<2 nm) or it goes dead before sunrise.

We'll see if his ploy works. White privilege has its limits.

Now I need a program to keep track of the players in this saga. In order to know which of them is enjoying white privilege, I first need to know which of them, the cop, the landowners, or the OP is white? Somehow I missed that vital bit of information as I read through this thread. So, in order that I can try to follow along, would someone who knows post the skin color of all involved so I can tell whose side I'm supposed to be cheering for?

I don't know anything about the cop or landowners in question but it seems pretty clear that the OP should have at least attempted to address this issue much sooner. If it's an inadequate anchor light that's at fault, he should have realized that you can buy a LOT of anchor lights for what he's now contemplating paying a lawyer. Probably a good thing that he's now sold the boat because if something this simple can snowball on him to this degree, he was sure to have other problems when he actually attempted to get underway.

PhilCarlson 02-01-2019 11:27 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
1 Attachment(s)
Here we go!

MarkofSeaLife 02-01-2019 01:19 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by jtsailjt (Post 2051580698)
So, in order that I can try to follow along, would someone who knows post the skin color of all involved so I can tell whose side I'm supposed to be cheering for?

Notwithstanding the funniness of this line... I have been ordered by my MSM's (more senior moderators... Picture a Dragon) to shove this thread into Politics if it digresses to politics.
Butterly, as I never can find the Politics forum, I shall just delete all next political, racist, and cultural appropriation posts.

What takes you 1 minute to post takes me 2 seconds to delete :grin :grin :grin Do a cost:benifit analysis at your leisure.

:devil :devil

Don L 02-01-2019 02:19 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
[QUOTE=MarkofSeaLife;2051580732... I have been ordered by my MSM's (more senior moderators... Picture a Dragon) to shove this thread into Politics if it digresses to politics.

What takes you 1 minute to post takes me 2 seconds to delete :grin :grin :grin Do a cost:benifit analysis at your leisure.

:devil :devil[/QUOTE]

well now that you are a slave to the man

!!$%##***^ white &&&6!! trash +}**"? Aussie @@@$((!!! Foster drinker

RegisteredUser 02-01-2019 02:40 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Don0190 (Post 2051580736)
.....!! Foster drinker

Using the F-word in a public forum is bad form.

MarcusJames 02-01-2019 03:13 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Sorry to hear that man, it happen to me too

Sal Paradise 02-01-2019 05:05 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
I doubt this thread has real political potential. Just bunch of angry old guys complaining about Florida. And other old guys complaining about how the first old guys complained about Florida. Then they argue.

But dammit jtsailjt did nail it with a funny one!!

JimMcGee 02-01-2019 05:17 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
The OP sounds like a troll to me...

RegisteredUser 02-01-2019 05:27 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
He was just pissed and wanted ro vent. Made him feel better....
Prob doesnt live under a bridge

Couldve run a $5 landscape lite up the mast...or could be the real deal.
Just a fodder post really

Davy J 02-01-2019 05:30 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

We'll see if his ploy works. White privilege has its limits.
Man........... I knew it, you know............ It has to be Trump's fault... Or something like Russian's or little Hiltler's.........:laugh

Anyhow, you guys like to beat a dead horse........... The OP has long been gone. Mark of Sealife deleted a link to a go fund me........ No OP since.

However, I did read somewhere that Melbourne did kick out all of the liveaboards from the nearby marina. They then, apparently, all anchored out in the harbor. And now the city is trying to deal with the consequences.

I tried to find the link to that story but could not.

I will say this, I have been living here in Florida for almost twenty-five years. The number of unattended boats, parked, at anchor is increasing daily. It's almost contagious........ Once one derelict finds a good spot, it spreads like a wild fire.

Unfortunately, unless the boating community finds a way to correct this, the government will.................

Then some here, really can blame Trump..............:grin

Sal Paradise 02-02-2019 06:40 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
And Godwin's Law once again proves true.

SanderO 02-02-2019 06:52 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Lawful is apparently whatever the police think at the time. What are Sailnuts thoughts on the difference between creating no wake and a low speed limit? Speeding in a crowded setting can clearly be dangerous. I've noticed a 5mph speed limit in some anchorages/mooring areas. What is interesting is that at that speed some (dinks at least) and launches kick up a healthy wake. That same boat going a bit faster on a plane produces no wake. Speeding seems to be the easy peasy thing for ticketing. For sure the water cops are not using radar... Seems like a judgment call... you think?

Davy J 02-02-2019 07:51 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

And Godwin's Law once again proves true.
I misspelled it on purpose............. :wink

boatsurgeon 02-02-2019 04:56 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Is / was the anchor light in question compliant with Colregs and inland waterway rules (as applicable) from dusk to dawn, all of the time, over the period in question.

If yes, it was a proper anchor light, powered to be on at all times when it should be, you may have a valid point, and may be able to get out of paying the tickets, at your time and expense.

If no, it was a cheap solar garden light that stayed lit for a few hours after dusk, you don't.

May as well save your breath and pay the tickets, or go to court and plead for mercy to get the cost down. Apologise to the officer for your belligerence and act like an angel or this is likely to get real expensive for you, in so many ways, real fast.

TakeFive 02-02-2019 07:17 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chef2sail (Post 2051580628)
Long gone...people talk at each other now with very little listening or communication

I’ve re-told your story of how things changed after Teddy died many times, including to my neighbor and former school board colleague who won a seat in Congress last November. I hope you made it through the shutdown OK. I assume you’re in the category of people who will never be made whole.

chef2sail 02-03-2019 01:28 AM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TakeFive (Post 2051580984)
I’ve re-told your story of how things changed after Teddy died many times, including to my neighbor and former school board colleague who won a seat in Congress last November. I hope you made it through the shutdown OK. I assume you’re in the category of people who will never be made whole.

Yes my company and many of the employees lost a boatload of irretrievable money while the clowns shut the govt down. We are contractors.

Personally I have lots of other non govt units so I was not affected.

There is no cival discourse from any side anymore. They are all to blame
Problem is there is no one to fix it or reset the civility.

zedboy 02-03-2019 01:36 PM

Re: Unlawful boating tickets, government extortion!!!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by JimMcGee (Post 2051580760)
The OP sounds like a troll to me...

Bueller?

Bueller?

...

Bueller?

Hello people!


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