I know and understand the rights of all Canadians and have a reasonable understanding how they apply. Most courts and lawyers have the same understanding.
To quote a case, that was lost does not help those that need the help, it only hinders them.
The proposal put forth by the NPA does not go against anything in the Canadian Charter of Rights and any attempt to suggest it does is blowing smoke. An understanding of reasonable and unreasonable is a step in the right direction to understand how and why the proposal is required.
With all due respect Smokey, I defer to the Supreme Court of Canada to decide the interpretation and protection of my Charter Rights. My grabbing the entry from the web was in no way an attempt to blow smoke(y) or fire, but rather to show that everyone , regardless of wealth, race, sexual orientation or religion, is protected.
Naturally, the Supreme Court has the final say, legally. Yes, everyone is protected but to quote a losing case does nothing to help. If you were to quote a WINNING case, that has criteria similar to this proposal, then that would help.
Originally Posted by homeless
We are all protected by the charter, it provides equal rights for all. (in a way)
But this means that all citizens also have to follow the laws of the land. One function of the Charter is to insure safety of Canadians, which includes while in our harbours. There are safety concerns for the public as a whole that are more important than the lifestyle of a few that choose to not follow the rules and regulations.
Using a case where a citizen used the Charter as defense, and then lost is not a good way of showing how it protects us all. Finding a ruling where a case was won by an individual in similar circumstances would help much more and wouldn't be misleading.
Programs programs! Get your programs!
Liveaboards. It is so hard to generalize, but the liveaboards fall into 2 groups: 1 are the street people who live out there because it is cheap and they can do their own thing. Their boats invariably are in poor repair and these people really have no business being out on the water. They have no business being anywhere unsupervised. 2 are the individualists. These folks are always intelligent, articulate and understand many of the issues. People who have chosen the water as a lifestyle and are there as a choice.
Local boaters. They see the harbour as a navigational hazard. The boats at anchor rarely have anchor lights, so coming or going in the early morning or late night is a real problem. The only problem the liveaboards pose to these folks is the petty crime that some of the boat people get into at the boat basin. The liveaboards feel the boat basin is theirs to use to come and go as they please. The residents pay taxes to manage the boat basin while the liveaboards don't pay civic taxes to support harbour management. Consequently, the NPA is looking at security systems to restrict the basin to users only.
Transient boaters and local business. In our travels last summer we spoke to many boaters who are now avoiding stopping in Nanaimo as the harbour is becoming congested with derelict and liveaboard boats. This has put some heat on the local chandleries and marine service industries. It is hard to get these folks to talk publicly, but I suspect a lot of the heat coming to council and the NPA is coming from such businesses. I believe they had a disasterous year last summer. The few tourists that did show seemed to remark that the harbour was an eyesore.
Derelict owners. These are folks who buy a wrecked up boat, anchor in the harbour, and use the place as a floating crack shack. Often involved in petty crime and completely unaware of marine safety. These folks are very creepy to me. Unfortunately, they easily fit in with type 1 of the liveaboard community.
Anchorers. These are (mostly) Protection Island residents who have no (or inadequate) moorage facilities on Protection Island for their boats.
Insurance (getting it). In order to get insurance, your boat has to make survey. Yes every 5 years our boat gets a survey, we fix up a few things and we continue to get insurance. I think our premium was $600 last year. Our boat is valued at 55k. Other boats are not so fortunate. many of the boats in the harbour are so inadequate to survey standards, they would not qualify for insurance without spending tens of thousands of dollars. This becomes a real problem for the derelict and type 1 liveaboards.
Holding tanks. The liveaboards suggest the fact that the little amount of poopoo they flush pales in comparison to cruise ships that attend our harbour. Notwithstanding that, the rules stand. The only problem is enforcing them. Nobody goes around the harbour at night to check to see if you are flushing your holding tank. Consequently the NPA has drafted rules to require long term users to keep a poopoo log.
Congestion. This is compounded by the "eclectic" anchoring styles of all the boats in the harbour (rode, scope). Absence of anchor lights is a real problem for local boaters who pass through Nanaimo Harbour.
Insurance(collisions). A collision with a derelict or type 1 liveaboard will result in a futile effort to recover damages. Last year 3 boats washed ashore on Newcastle Island. All the owners immediately disowned them and left BC Parks to pull them off and break them up.
Petty Crime in the Basin and downtown area. I really don't know where we will wind up on this one. There are some businesses that have grown up in the boat basin. If they secure the place too tight, they will destroy the Protection Island Ferry as well as a couple of restaurants that subsist in the basin.
Liveaboard Rights? Are there any? I dunno. Can I get in an RV and just go out boondocking? Yes. Is it legal? No. Do I risk a fine for squatting on land? Yes. Is it to become the same on the water? It seems a fair question these days. I wonder where all this regulation will end? BTW what is a liveaboard? We liveaboard our boat 3-4 months a year. I think this is a fair issue to raise as I am seeing more congestion in the local harbours over the past 20 years and wonder when regulation is going to dramatically affect me. Just who are the local waters going to be for?
Anchoring Rights. The moment you put a deadline to a boats stay in a harbour you invite criticism. The fact that Nanaimo harbour allows vritually 6 consecutive weeks of moorage (2 in harbour 2 in park and another 2 in harbour) seems to be plenty for most transient pleasure boaters. What about boats that need fixups (either crew or mechanical)? Is all I got to do to anchor long term in Nanaimo Harbour is break something? There is some vague reference in other blog postings to universal anchoring rights for anyone in the constitution. I don't see it anywhere. If the False Creek liveaboards are sucessful in their court challenge, it will inevitably wind up with more legislation to restrict the use of harbours for all boaters. Next month we will anchor in False Creek for a couple of weeks while we attend the boat show. We are reserving the last week (3 week maximum) if the weather makes a safe exit from False creek impossible.
Moorage. It is difficult to get affordable moorage. We waited for 6 months at our old marina before we got in to new one. We waited for 6 months to get into our old place. Sooooo I would say 6 months to a year to get into a place. The NPA is increasing yearround dockspace as the tourists are now giving us a pass. I would not like to have my boat in the Basin as theft is a real problem at the present time. Moorage on Newcastle Channel varies from @ $7-9 a foot per month. There is no viable moorage for big boats on Protection Island (>20 ft.).
What a great post1 Thankyou for your input.
Thanks for the point of view from a user of the harbour.
Originally Posted by Ahab
From a boaters perspective
As a new member of this post and one of the boaters in the Nanaimo Harbour I wish to first thank Ahab for his summary which is well done.
Last Spring, the Nanaimo Port Authority (NPA) had drafted some proposed bylaws proposing a permit requirement for boats staying in the harbour anchorage area longer than 2 weeks with certain conditions to obtain a permit. A group of boaters affected by these proposed changes, known as the Nanaimo Harbour Boaters Community (NHBC) got organized in response. The NHBC recognizing we had to address some issues with problem boats in the harbour worked towards solutions to these problems. We fully expect a proposed permit structure to eliminate the more obvious problem boats and enable the NPA to react appropriately to be able to remove boats that do not comply and/or have been left derelict in the harbour and have these vessels dealt with by the Receiver of Wrecks.
One of the complaints we had heard was the discharging of toilets in the harbour. As a group we agreed this practice was to stop, with holding tanks to become mandatory. Along with boats to be under their own power, anchor lights operating, contact information displayed and a number of other smaller requests we agreed to abide by most of the NPA proposals with the aim of improving the harbour and allow the more responsible boaters to remain.
The NPA had initiated changes to their own marina in that they request liability and pollution insurance requirements for their monthly moorage (interestingly not for day rates) and have proposed these same insurance requirements for boats out at anchor as well. They NPA are also proposing for boats staying in the harbour longer than 2 weeks, that one must stay on the vessel four days out of seven. The insurance requirements and the four day stay are the main stumbling blocks for the NHBC.
For many of us insurance poses a major obstacle to obtain and we feel should be left as an option for those wishing it not a mandatory requirement. For some of the boaters they have made the harbour their home and have limited income for insurance, but have been very diligent on ensuring there anchor systems are secure, their boats shipshape and the risk to other boaters is minimized as much as can be expected. I have observed that most of the problems associated with boats dragging into other boats are from the transient traffic that seem to lack the marine skill of anchoring securely and not from members of NHBC. The proposed 4 day stay we are told was meant to curtail some of the vessels that are simply left unattended by less responsible owners. We agree that many boats should be removed from the harbour if left unattended or abandoned and we proposed a system of regular inspection by the owners of boats at anchor.
We have boaters living on Protection Island living on waterfront property and anchor their boat in Nanaimo Harbour in front of their living room window. These people will be told 4 nights out of 7 must be spent aboard, that simply seems unfair and unfounded. Other responsible boaters living in Nanaimo simply can not find monthly moorage in any of the marinas in town, as the marinas have no space available, and choose to anchor here rather than find a far away marina to keep their vessel.
Yes, we would like to see an end to some of the less responsible boaters that drop their craft out in the harbour and are never seen or heard from again until their boat is either dragging, sinking or on the beach. At the same time we feel responsible boaters should still be allowed to anchor in Canadian Waters.
We also are concerned with precedent setting regulations governing Canadian boats in Canadian waters. If you value your freedom on the water this issue should be of interest to you. You are urged to contact the Nanaimo Port Authority to express your concern and urge them to work with the Nanaimo Harbour Boaters Community and not against us. We are trying to be part of the solution.
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