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Liveaboards, city to meet about permanent moorings

By Times staff writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published April 5, 2002

DAVIS ISLANDS -- Boaters and city park officials will meet Wednesday to talk about plans to install permanent moorings in the Davis Islands Seaplane Basin.

Owners of vessels staying for free in the small bay requested the meeting to air concerns about the basin and to reach a compromise about its future.

The meeting comes a few months after the city ordered boaters to leave the basin or risk having their vessels seized. Officials said the boats create problems when owners abandon them and they break off their moorings.

Several boats owners refused to leave and formed a group called B FAIR (Boaters for Fair and Intelligent Regulations). They said the city had no authority to kick them out and hired a lawyer to argue their case.

Attorney Truett Gardner said the city appears willing to accommodate the boaters, based on a meeting between the parties this week. Construction on the moorings would probably start next year, after hurricane season. Boaters would pay a monthly fee for the anchorage.

The public meeting is set for 6 p.m. at the Davis Islands Yacht Club. For information, call the city parks department at 931-2121.

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