Friday, July 11, 2014

Rummaging Around The Harbor

Brian Dougherty J 105 Legacy leads The Newport Beach High Point Series

By Len Bose
July 11, 2014 | 6:59 p.m.

I spent this week rummaging around the harbor looking for stories and contacting my best sources for the latest information.
I heard that William "Skip" Kenney is our newest harbor commissioner, while Duncan McIntosh and Doug West retained their seats on the commission. I've known Skip for more than 10 years, and he is not one to mince words. He will get his tasks completed ahead of time and ask the difficult questions.
The next Harbor Commission meeting is scheduled for July 21, and one of the items on the agenda for discussion is whether to develop a dredging capacity for our harbor. More discussion on this topic is always a good thing for the overall maintenance of our harbor.
Another topic that might make it to the agenda is my idea of day-use moorings just south of the harbor entrance in front of the Corona del Mar beach. At this time, this area is available for part-time anchorage.
As I mentioned last week, I noticed this idea while sailing in Long Beach and came to find out that Mike O'Toole was the visionary who placed moorings around the Belmont Veterans Memorial Pier. It took 10 years for his vision to take shape after obtaining a permit from the Coastal Commission, setting up a public dinghy dock on the pier and completing environmental impact reports.
One of my harbor sources commented, "I think it would be fun. Now, to put it into action may take longer than we have left on this Earth, but hey, it's still a good idea."
We all know that our local boaters prefer not to anchor, and this could be a way to get more people to use their boats. At first glance, I would propose that these moorings only be used during the day and that the city collect fees similar to what is charged in Catalina: $33 a day for boats under 30 feet to $80 for boats between 70 and 80 feet.
People and groups could reserve them, and the Harbor Department can keep an eye on everyone. If you like this idea, please make your voice heard at the next Harbor Commission meeting.
I've been writing about my "catch and dispose" of Mylar balloons and promised to give shout-outs to people who send in photos of their catches. The Bents family hauled in a record catch of 19 balloons last week, and I have posted photos of everyone who sent in their photos on my blog, I will also ask our harbor commissioners to support the campaign.
Another issue still on the table is derelict boats and what to do about them. Ever since the requirement that mooring permit holders — whether offshore or shore mooring — are no longer required to keep a vessel on its mooring, many derelict boats have been removed from the harbor. I have observed many more derelict boats on shore moorings rather than at offshore moorings. This blight can only be solved by the residents attending the Harbor Commission meetings and expressing their concern.
Harbor code enforcement should also be brought back to the table, and I still feel the harbor should have a code enforcement officer. This officer could also manage the public docks and, who knows, maybe someday manage our day moorings in Corona del Mar.
Out on the racecourse, this summer's twilight series is past the halfway point. In Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club Taco Tuesdays' Harbor 20 fleet, Michael Volk aboard Lighting, Jan Houghton sailing Kismet and Steve Selling sailing Trident are all within four points of each other in C fleet.
Over in B fleet, Mark Conzelman at the helm of Shana's Secret is right on the heels of John Whitney's Fun D. In A fleet, I happen to have a small lead, sailing my boat Only Child over Bob Yates' Jubilee.
At Newport Harbor Yacht Club twilights on Thursday nights, Roy Delis sailing his boat Harborsol won C fleet in June. In B fleet, Daniel Geissmann aboard Red Devel won the month, and in A fleet, Chris Allen aboard Zephyr came from behind and beat Jim Kerrigan sailing A Salt and Battery and Ed Kimball aboard Dragon Lady.
This Saturday is the BCYC Ocean Series, which is race No. 3 of the Newport Beach High Point Series. Brian Dougherty's J/105 Legacy holds a four-point lead over Tango, Amantte and Adious.
Sea ya.

LEN BOSE is an experienced boater, yacht broker and boating columnist.

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