Florida county to construct water access plan

MONROE COUNTY, Fla. – The Monroe County Commission has unanimously passed a 9-month moratorium on the redevelopment or conversion of working waterfront property, following a charge led by Commissioner George Neugent, Commissioner David Rice and Marathon Boat Yard owner Bruce Popham, reported the Marine Industries Association of Florida in a recent statement.

The moratorium has bought the Florida Keys some time to decide how to save marinas, boatyards and commercial fishing, which are critical to the county economy, stated MIAF.

This proposal has been under discussion for over a year and studied closely for the past three months, according to the association. Monroe County has contracted the South Florida Regional Planning Council to do a marina management analysis and the results will be available later this year.

“The Florida Keys is a fast track microcosm of problems occurring all over Florida due to pressures from developers and environmentalists that are leading to the loss of water access,” stated the association. “No slips and no place to work on boats will ultimately lead to no large boat sales. The future is here and we are way behind the power curve. Fortunately, Monroe County is taking action with other Florida counties watching closely.”

The Monroe County ordinance may be found on the MIAF Web site at http://www.boatflorida.org/custom_pages/site_page_3928/index.html under Monroe County Moratorium Ordinance July 2005.

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