ADA Compliance
The City of St. Augustine remains committed to providing accessibility to all and provides for handicapped accessible parking in the city. For a map of accessible parking locations, Click Here To notify the city regarding accessibility concerns contact: Will Franke, Building Official, Phn: 904.825.1065, Fax: 904.209.4335, Email: wfranke@citystaug.com; or Todd Grant, Public Works Deputy Director, Phn: 904.825.1040, Fax: 904.209.4286, Email: tgrant@citystaug.com. You may also write either of these contacts at City of St. Augustine, P.O. Box 210, St. Augustine, FL 32085-0210.

Consumer Confidence Report
The City of St. Augustine remains committed to providing clean and safe drinking water. For the previous year's sampling results please click here. To notify the city regarding water treatment concerns contact: Patrick Timoney, Water Treatment Plant Supervisor, Phn: 904.825.1044, Fax: 904.823-2280, Email: ptimoney@citystaug.com; or woperators@citystaug.com, or write the City of St. Augustine, P.O. Box 210, St. Augustine, FL 32085-0210.

 

Implementation of Plan Promises a Safer,
Cleaner Harbor for the Nation’s Oldest Port City

Long known as the Nation’s Oldest City, St. Augustine, whose centuries of history are tied to the sea and its role as a port city, is fast becoming known also as the Nation’s Oldest Port City. Even today, while there may be few commercial vessels in and out of the city’s waterways, there are still many, many private vessels that pass through or are moored permanently in the city’s harbor.

Pleasure boaters who move up and down the east coast year round via the Intracoastal waterway, often stop for a week or more in St. Augustine, and some of them anchor outside of a marina in the open harbor during their visit. But most of the boats that lie north and south of the Bridge of Lions and in Salt Run near the St. Augustine Lighthouse, are permanently moored in the harbor since their owners are residents who either live aboard the boat or reside in the vicinity and frequently visit the area and so store their boat in the harbor.

Even though it has never been legal to establish a non-permitted private mooring in any Florida waterway, circumstances in St. Augustine’s harbor, including its limited capacity, did not merit a strict enforcement. This has changed in recent years.

The growing number of private and unregulated anchorage sites has grown to the point that there are increased incidents of unregulated sewage dumping, boats being abandoned by non-resident owners, or boats coming loose from home-made moorings causing damage to other boats and docks. The only way to manage the growing population of boats using the city’s harbor was to develop a plan that included safe and secure mooring sites, sewage pump out services, and a fee schedule favorable to St. Augustine residents.

 

 

Among the very first steps toward developing a Harbor Management Plan was to meet with interested members of the public and to partner with them every step of the way. That initial meeting was held on August 30, 2005 when staff presented to the public what it had learned about other harbor management plans and what elements might be applicable to St. Augustine (See presentation here: Community Guide to Creating a Mooring Field.)

With input gathered from these initial meetings, city staff worked for over two years developing a comprehensive plan which was presented to the public in the fall of 2007 through four separate public meetings. Input from those meetings and additional staff research resulted in a final plan that was approved by the St. Augustine City Commission in December of last year (see the completed Ordinance 2009-38 here.)

With a solid plan in hand, one built with input from the community, city staff, and professionals in the field of harbor management, implementation of the construction phase began in early February with the removal of unauthorized, non-permitted moorings. That process will continue through March with the Salt Run field being first, then the San Sebastian River area, the San Marcos and Menéndez fields (north and south of the Bridge of Lions), and finally the Hospital Creek area.

As the installation of the mooring fields begins, vessels in the affected area may be relocated to areas where work has not yet been performed. Following the completion of a field, vessels will have to comply with the new regulations to use moorings in that area.

All unused or unattended moorings will be removed by the end of March, but all moorings and boats must be removed by June 30. City staff will work with identified boat owners to minimize the distance and the amount of time boaters will be displaced during the construction phase. Additionally, as part of the overall plan, the city will remove all moorings outside the permitted mooring fields and within the City limits to ensure compliance with state law.

A key provision to the Harbor Management Plan has always been to offer waterfront residents, those most affected, and city and county residents the option of reserving certain sites before they are opened to the general public. During the first two weeks of June, waterfront residents in the city may reserve specific mooring sites. Then, on June 14, any resident of St. Johns County may make reservations. On June 28 the process is open to the general public. Certain forms of residency and property ownership are required to secure reservations. (See below.)

The rate schedule developed for the Harbor Management Plan is not a one-fee-fits-all, but rather takes into account whether the vessel is a live-aboard or being “stored,” whether or not the owner is a resident of St. Johns County, and which mooring field is being used. Here is the complete Rate Schedule for the fields.

By the fall of 2010, the St. Augustine community, both those who venture onto the waterways and those who do not, will enjoy a safer and cleaner harbor that will, in the end, be accessible by a greater number of boaters and preserve the character of a city that is not only the Nation’s Oldest City, but also the Nation’s Oldest Port City.

Following are a number of resources regarding the implementation of the City of St. Augustine’s Harbor Management Plan.

For additional information or questions, please contact the St. Augustine Municipal Marina at 904.825.1026 or via email at marina@citystaug.com.

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