2010-04-22 / Front Page

Legacy mooring gets transfer approval

By Iain Wilson

Despite talk of the Coastal Resource Management Council’s proposed limitation of grandfathered moorings, the Jamestown Harbor Commission approved a family mooring transfer during its meeting last Wednesday.

Islander Richard Beretta attended the meeting to seek permission to transfer his mooring, which he has owned for more than two decades, to his son with the sale of the elder Beretta’s house.

In a letter to the commission, the elder Beretta stated that in the fall of 2009, he was told the transfer of the mooring would not be allowed. It was soon recognized, however, that his mooring was initially misclassifi ed as a Class 1; it is actually a Class 3 mooring.

The transfer of a Class 3 mooring is legally acceptable, so the commission granted its approval of transfer of the mooring, which is located off of East Shore Road.

However, it was made clear to the younger Beretta, also named Richard, that he must place a vessel in the water this season.

If he fails to do so, said Harbor Commission Chair Michael deAngeli, he will be required to reapply with the Harbor Commission prior to next season.

“Our job is to limit moorings that don’t get used,” deAngeli said.

The younger Beretta said that the mooring is commissioned and that he has been in the market for a new vessel recently. The straightforward transfer was approved unanimously.

“That’s the way we’ve always done it,” said Harbormaster Sam Paterson. “The commission says, ‘Yes, he can’ or ‘No, he can’t.’”

Financing for a major project in town – repairs to the wood-pile pier – was also on the commission’s agenda.

Commissioner Chris Brown presented a financing option for the project that included taking money from other portions of the budget. According to the commission’s numbers, total funding for the pier is approximately $288,000, with $240,000 of that coming in the form of the construction bid.

Funding sources also include infrastructure-retained earnings, budgets for this year and next, and harbor-retained earnings. The one line item showing zero was town funding, something that troubled commission Vice Chair Andrew Kallfelz.

“If I were the permit holders in this town, I’d say, ‘Hey, this doesn’t seem fair,’” Kallfelz said, adding, “I’m sort of stunned we’ve spent $300,000 on these wood-pile pier repairs.”

The bill for the project will be funded primarily by permit holders, though the intention is to open the pier to walkers, visitors and fishermen.

While he acknowledged the validity of the point, deAngeli said, “You cannot run a town or Harbor Commission with the idea that everyone is going to get equal shares of benefit. It’s not possible.”

A suggestion was made that the commission make the Town Council aware that it lacked funding for the project, and ask that community funding be implemented. However, the project is far enough along that an attempt may be futile. Commissioners

voted on the financing options put forth by Brown, approving them by a vote of 5 to 2.

Kallfelz and Lawrence Eichler voted against the package of options as presented.

Brown then presented a fiveyear, long-range budget estimation for both infrastructure and harbor management items. The budget for fiscal year 2010-2011 was approved unanimously, and will be forwarded to the Town Council.

Finally, the commission sorted out a roll call issue to which the Town Council had drawn its attention. Ideally, each member of the commission will represent a different faction in town, whether that is recreational boaters, non-boaters or commercial boaters.

Each commission member noted the group it represented, and Harbor Clerk Kim Devlin will forward the list to the Town Council.

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