Major changes proposed at Auke Bay

Changes aim to return harbor's emphasis to transient boats

Posted: Thursday, December 16, 2004

When the Don D. Statter Harbor was built in 1986, it was for transient users, not the live-aboards that now line it as well.

Juneau port officials are proposing a series of changes to return the Auke Bay harbor's emphasis to transient boats.

The Juneau Docks and Harbors Board wants to impose a daily rate in the summer, between May 1 and Sept. 30.

Under current regulations, with a summer monthly permit, a person pays $4.88 per day for a 25-foot-long boat. The new regulation would require the owner to pay $6 a day, no matter how many days the boat moors at the harbor.

"We are looking at a 3 to 5 percent revenue shortage," said Port Director John Stone. "We don't have revenues to improve our facilities. Going to a daily rate will increase our revenues."

The new regulations would require all vessels to leave Statter for 15 days after a 30-day stay. A boat could stay at Statter for the maximum of two months in the summer. Right now, boaters have to leave for a minimum of 24 hours every 10 days but there is no maximum stay.

In the winter, the harbormaster would set up a lottery for winter space allocation. The harbormaster would accept applications in August and assign moorage by lottery by Sept. 30.

Some users of Statter Harbor are upset about the rate increase.

"The city just wants rich people there. They are squeezing out the little guys," said Lowell Ellis, a 58-year-old commercial fisherman who moors his boat at Statter. "There are more and more tourist operations at the harbor. They should pay to build their own harbor."

Kurt Dzinich Sr., who was involved in drafting the moorage policy for Statter Harbor in the late 1980s, said the new policy gives the harbormaster too much discretion over who gets the moorage.

Levon Alexander, who has a live-aboard boat at the harbor in winter, is one user who supports the new regulations.

"Whenever you allow permanent moorage in a harbor, it will be clogged with boats people don't use as boats. A lot of them are not seaworthy," Alexander said. "John Stone is just making the port nice and clean as a port should be. I am all for it."

• I-Chun Che can be reached at ichun.che@juneauempire.com.



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