Anchoring violation trial continued

The trial of David Dumas, who challenged the Marco Island Waterways and Boating Safety Ordinance, was continued Friday in Collier County Circuit Court.



The case will be reset for next month. A new date for the trial has yet to be determined.

Dumas' attorney, Donald P. Day of Berry, Day and McFee in Naples, said in the courtroom that he hadn't received discovery from the prosecuting attorney and would ask that the case be continued.

Day, who is representing the defendant free of charge, said he will prepare motions to dismiss the case.

Dumas was cited Jan. 19 aboard his 42-foot Krogen motor yacht Kinship for anchoring within the 300-foot limit in Smokehouse Bay near The Esplanade on Jan. 18.

The Notice To Appear stated that Dumas violated the ordinance "for being moored for 12 hours within 300 feet next to a sea wall and State Route 951."

Dumas and fellow boater Lee Oldershaw told the Marco Eagle on Jan. 12 that they would pilot the vessel and wait to be approached by an officer.

The ordinance states that boats can't anchoring within 300 feet of shore or a man-made object for more than 12 hours. Another regulation states that a vessel cannot anchor more than three days in the island's waterways without proof that the boat has been pumped out.

Boating groups, including the Sailing Association of Marco Island (SAMI), the local and statewide Standing Watch organizations and the National Marine Manufacturers Association, have threatened to take the city to court if a boater is cited for violating the ordinance.

They say the regulations are in conflict of Florida Statute 327.60 that prohibits local governments from regulating the anchoring of non-live-aboard vessels in navigation outside of such mooring fields. The statute also states that local governments can enact and enforce regulations that prohibit or restrict the mooring or anchoring of floating structures or live-aboard vessels within their jurisdiction, or any vessels within marked boundaries of a mooring field, provided in state Statute 327.40.

The city of Marco Island doesn't have permitted or marked mooring fields.

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