81.7 F
Charlotte Amalie
Monday, May 20, 2024


Jan. 31, 2002 – Come spring, boaters will have to pay to moor and anchor overnight in V.I. National Park waters off St. John.
In part, "We will pour the money back into maintaining the moorings," acting park planner Jim Owens said.
The fees also will help pay for educating the public about how to moor and anchor properly and how to care for the marine environment, and for the salaries of more water-based enforcement rangers.
The park is looking for a contractor to collect the fees. Once that detail is ironed out, the park will set a date to implement the program. Right now, April 1 is the target date, Owens said.
He estimated the fee program will generate $500,000 to $600,000 a year; how much the park gets to keep will depend on the deal negotiated with the contractor.
The collection method is up to the contractor, too, Owens said. The contractor may elect to go from boat to boat or may have a spot set up ashore to collect the fees.
There are 182 moorings in place throughout the national park waters, 154 along the North Shore bays and 28 on the South Shore. Only boats 60 feet and under may use them.
Boats plying the North Shore waters should use moorings if they are available. If all moorings are occupied, they may put down anchors. However, no anchoring is allowed on the South Shore; so boats must use moorings or go elsewhere.
The fees apply only to overnight stays, between 5 p.m. and 7:30 a.m. The nightly mooring fee is $15. Where anchoring is permitted if there are no available moorings, the achoring fee is $10 for boats no more than 60 feet in length. Larger vessels also may anchor — for $15 a night for those 60 to 75 feet long and $25 for those over 75 feet.

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