Pilot Program for Anchoring & Mooring

In 2009, the Florida legislature directed FWC, in consultation with DEP, to establish a pilot program to explore potential options for regulating the anchoring or mooring of non-live aboard vessels outside the marked boundaries of mooring fields. The goals of the pilot program were to encourage the establishment of additional public mooring fields and to develop and test policies and regulatory regimes that:

(a) Promote the establishment and use of mooring fields

(b) Promote public access to the waters of the state

(c) Enhance navigational safety

(d) Protect maritime infrastructure

(e) Protect the marine environment

(f) Deter improperly stored, abandoned, or derelict vessels

Monroe County’s Participation in the Pilot Program

The FWC chose Monroe County (in partnership with Key West and Marathon) as one of five local governments in the state to participate in the Pilot Program. The Pilot Program began in 2010 and expired on July 1, 2017. The time-line for the Pilot Program was as follows:

March 2011 - Began monthly surveys in association with mooring fields (1 year)

April/May 2011 – Final Project Reports from vessel surveys in Key West Mooring Field and Boca Chica Harbor

July 1, 2011 - FWC selected local governments for participation in Pilot Program

Dec. 2011 - Stakeholder Workshops and development of draft local ordinances

June 2012 - Approval of draft local ordinances at FWC Commission meeting

Oct. 1, 2012 - Local adoption of ordinance

July 1, 2014 - Ordinances set to expire concurrently with expiration of Pilot Program, but re-enacted by the Legislature for 3 additional years of study

July 1, 2014 - Pilot Program extended to July 1, 2017

Dec. 21, 2016 - FWC submits Pilot Program Report to Governor and Legislature

July 1, 2017 - Pilot Program expired

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