FWC selects 3 sites for anchoring, mooring program
Thursday, February 24, 2011
Media contact: Katie Purcell, 850-459-6585
At its meeting Wednesday in Apalachicola, the
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) selected
three sites for an anchoring and mooring pilot program. Two more
will be chosen in April.
Following staff recommendations, Commissioners
voted to select the cities of Sarasota and St. Petersburg and
Monroe County as sites for the mooring field pilot program. A
mooring field is a controlled area where boaters tie their vessels
to a floating buoy, which is secured to the bottom of the
Under Florida statute, the FWC, in consultation
with the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), must
establish a pilot program regulating anchoring and mooring outside
of marked public mooring fields.
"We hope the project promotes safe public access to
Florida's waters, protects the marine environment and deters
improperly stored, abandoned or derelict vessels," said Maj. Jack
Daugherty, leader of the FWC's Boating and Waterways section.
By July 1, 2011, the FWC must have selected all
locations for the pilot project. The requirements include two on
the east coast of Florida, two on the west coast and one in Monroe
County, so the remaining selections must be on the east coast.
The FWC staff began work on the program in October
2009, when it sent out letters of solicitation. Fourteen counties
and municipalities responded with letters of intent to
"Our staff worked with DEP to gather data to
determine appropriate sites for the project," Daugherty said.
They analyzed geographic characteristics of the
area, services provided at the mooring field sites, usage fees and
the average number of boats inside and outside of the mooring
At its December meeting, the Boating Advisory
Council, which makes recommendations to the FWC and the Department
of Community Affairs regarding issues affecting the boating public,
advised FWC staff to move forward with the site recommendations on
the west coast and in Monroe County.
Wednesday, staff presented recommendations to the
Commission on those recommended sites on the west coast and in
Monroe County. Commissioners approved FWC staff-recommended sites
and a request for more time to collect and analyze more data
regarding anchoring and mooring on the east coast.
FWC staff will present the data to the Boating
Advisory Council in March for recommendations, and then return at
the April Commission meeting with suggestions for the two remaining
east coast pilot sites. The Commission also directed staff to work
with the city of Stuart in an attempt to be added as a third pilot
Please visit MyFWC.com/Boating or call the FWC's Boating and
Waterways Section at 850-488-5600 for more information.