Sunday, June 21, 2015

Harbor Board Getting Better Organized?

Fairhope, Alabama. (

ADOPTS FIRST BYLAWS                                                    
Meyers, Riggs, Gilespie

At its last meeting, the city's harbor board voted unanimously to adopt a set of 'bylaws' for the first time, setting out how the committee is to be run.

Bylaw defined: "A rule adopted by an organization chiefly for the government of its members and the regulation of its affairs" 

The H.B. was formed by the city council in 1962.

Newly-appointed member Dr. Margaret Meyers headed a sub-committee appointed at their last meeting to come up with them, based upon those of other city committees. Tony Chavez assisted.

The new bylaws include:

Henry, Yeager, Chavers, Boone
* Powers and duties of the board.
* Membership requirements and terms (increased from 2 to 4yrs.).
* Officers to be elected yearly in July. (only 2 consecutive terms)
* Meetings to be held quarterly (or sooner if needed)
* 'Roberts Rules of Order' used to conduct meetings.

The city council will consider the issue at tomorrow's work session.


The board also:

* Passed a resolution permitting electric boat lifts at the municipal pier marina, on the south and west sides only. They are to be uniform in nature, installed and maintained by the lessee;  if abandoned become city property after 2 years.

* Got an update about dredging the city's Fly Creek Marina docks: Necessary Alabama Conservation permits should be received by the first part of July. Bids for the work may be sought before then to expedite, according to James Gilespie.

* A new lease-agreement for the gravel north culdesac-road property once owned by Charlie Gay (now by Mike Francis, his heir) is nearing completion by the city attorney. The previous one was oral, not in writing (the city paid electric utilities and property taxes of about $500/yr, according to the mayor).

* Decided not to change annual slip-lease rule #13 prohibiting over-nighting onboard vessels docked at slips.  (This rule would have to be changed to allow the controversial 'Bed n' Boat' business to remain at slip #1)

All slip leases expire in August: any term changes will be included at that time in the new document.

* Discusssed increasing commercial slip rental fees from the current yearly flat rate of $450/yr (according to Gilespie) -- possibly to a per-foot basis instead (recreation boats are charged $5/ft). Charging for electricity (currently free) was also discussed.

* Discussed the longstanding outer-channel dredging issue. There is considerable confusion about if the Army Corp. of Engineers will ever do it again: according to one member commercial activity there does not meet their current threshold of 1 million tons per year.  Mayor Kant told the Times the Corps. won't say for sure one way or the other -- just that there is no funding available currently. The main reason for maintaining a 'fishing fleet' there (at greatly-reduced rents) has always been to qualify for channel dredging -- a recurring, costly thing that has not happened for over 7 years.

* Began discussing new and already proposed maintenance projects for next year's budgeting process.

[Publisher's note: The two leases with Eastern Shore Marine, Inc. (Ed Wall) will also expire later this year; and are currently being re-negotiated. A long term lease for restaurant/marina property on municipal pier is not expiring: it was recently transferred to another operator.]

                                                    FLY CREEK MARINA AREA

 The north side of Fly Creek up to the tree-line is city property. 

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