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On the Harbor: Harbor Commission’s goals and objectives outlined


I wanted to take the time to update you on what the Harbor Commission has been tasked with in the upcoming year by reviewing its objectives and goals, along with any observations I have made from the commission’s meetings.

Number One: The annual review of Title 17 and recommended updates to the City Council where necessary (Commissioner: Yahn). Title 17 is our harbor city codes. If you have questions regarding our harbor codes and enforcement, your contact is Matt Cosylion at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. What Commissioner Yahn has been tasked with is updates or additions to Title 17. The devil is always in the details, so when you start talking about Title 17, pay close attention when recommendations are made.

Number Two: Collaborate with the Water Quality/Coastal Tidelands Committee to partner on areas within the harbor where both Commission/Committees intersect (Commissioners: Svrcek, Scully). In my interview with Commissioner Scully last month, the interaction between these two committees showed proven results with the Water Wheel, along with working with the county and upland cities’ water runoff. Progress has been made, which I noticed when attending the Huntington Beach Harbor Commission meeting, starting at the beginning of the process.

Number Three: There has been successful implementation of the mooring reconfiguration initiative, including design, testing, permitting, execution and monitoring (Commissioner: Beer). Ira Beer continuous to work through all the different government agencies to start on the test mooring field.

On the Harbor sea lions

Click on photo for a larger image

Photo by Len Bose

Sea lions aboard “Buena Vida”

Number Four: Collaborate with Parks, Beaches & Recreation Commission and staff to evaluate the best use for Lower Castaways and make a recommendation to City Council (Commissioners: Marston, Svrcek). Commissioner Marston gave an update on this task at the last meeting. This objective has been on the books for a very long time, and my guess is it will remain on the books for an even longer period of time. One of the issues is this is one of the last open spaces around the harbor with no clear “best use” for this property at this time.

Number Five: Work with staff to identify opportunities to add additional Harbor Services (restrooms, additional pump out stations, dock space, shore boat service, boat launch ramp and development of the mobile app). (Commissioners: Marston, Yahn). There has been a lot of progress with the mobile app, public docks, upgrades to the pump out stations. The harbor desperately needs another boat launch ramp and is a huge task. I have my fingers crossed for this one.

Number Six: Continues with the participation of businesses, nonprofits and the Harbor Department with a Newport Harbor Safety Committee to promote best practices, and address safety issues on the water (Commissioner: Scully). Scully had made huge progress on this task with as many as 35 companies attending the first harbor safety meetings. If you are active on the water you will want to stay tuned to any upcoming meetings.

Number Seven: Review Harbor Department responsibilities, evaluate the department’s readiness and effectiveness to deliver harbor services as necessary for normal operations and during emergencies, and make recommendations as determined necessary (Commissioners: Scully, Williams). From my interview earlier with Newport Harbormaster Paul Blank, much has been done regarding this task with drills with other agencies and equipment inspections.

Number Eight: Work with city staff on an update of the market rent to be charged for onshore and offshore moorings (Commissioners: Cunningham, Beer). This is always a heated topic, and the Newport Mooring Association is always quick to share their concerns and notify the public when this topic is placed on the agenda.

Number Nine. Evaluate establishing day moorings off Big Corona Beach (Commissioner: Williams). This one is dear to my heart, as I have always felt it would be a great idea to have day use mooring off of Big Corona. This would be an opinion, rather than anchoring off of Emerald Bay, or freeing up the anchorages. I need to step forward and work with Williams to make this happen.

Number 10. Support staff in all efforts related to the dredge completion of the Federal Navigation channels in addition to the upcoming agency renewals of the Regional General Permit (RGP54) shallow water dredging permit. (Commissioners: Cunningham, Svrcek). This is the mother of all other objectives, and must be constantly monitored.

I wish there were three other objectives listed: navigation lights on top of the channel markers in the upper bay; the removal of the old fixed channel markers to floating buoys and marine recycling centers.

Sea ya.


Len Bose is a yachting enthusiast, yacht broker and harbor columnist for Stu News Newport.

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