Cape Coral Approves Bimini Basin Mooring Field
Bimini Basin Mooring Field Conceived
On Monday night Cape Coral’s City Council approved an ordinance to create a Bimini Basin mooring field. This action should allow city officials to regulate the boats staying in the basin.
During the council meeting, experienced boaters from the Cape Coral Sailing Club voiced their opinions. They believe that a mooring field is a good idea, but that the City is not yet ready to implement it.
The ordinance includes a “5-1-5” plan, which prohibits vessels from being in the mooring field for more than 5 consecutive nights. It also allows for the removal of unattended vessels.
It’s unclear how much it will cost to implement or maintain such a program. The city will also have to navigate a lengthy state permitting process.
To receive a permit, the City will need a full time Harbor Master, a pump-out station and public restrooms. Cape Coral staff with marine management experience don’t seem to have been involved in the process. A city employee I spoke with said no one working at the Cape Coral Yacht Basin was asked for input.
Chuck Ballaro of the Cape Coral Daily Breeze reports that Councilwoman Marilyn Stout expressed concern over the costs. “It is hard to support an ordinance when you don’t have the cost and when you have stakeholders who have not been included,” stated Stout.
Despite those uncertainties, the Council voted unanimously in favor of the ordinance.
This seems like another “cart before the horse” decision by the City. It’s akin to how they spent $40,000 to add a beach to the basin even though it is unsafe to swim there. The development plans for the D&D Boat ramp site and Seven Islands projects are currently taking similar paths, with much more money at stake. These are multi-million dollar expenses the City are footing to pave the way for private developers.
You can read Ballaro’s full report of the ordinance and council meeting on the Cape Coral Daily Breeze website.