Story and photos by Joseph Sapia
ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS – The borough has begun seeking renters for its new service – regular docking space for personal watercraft at the Atlantic Highlands Municipal Harbor.
The floating dock space is expected to be in place by the end of the month, occupying an area just west of Pier 1 – or an unused area between Sissy’s at the Harbor restaurant and the fishing boats, said Borough Administrator Adam Hubeny. The cost for space rental is $1,000 for the season, running March 1 to Oct. 31. Because the docks are being placed mid-season, the rental fee for the rest of the year is being pro-rated, working out to about $250 to $275, according to Hubeny.
Currently, personal watercraft have no permanent docking area at the harbor, but can be launched there for a $15 a trip. This is the second season the harbor, which sits on Sandy Hook Bay, has allowed personal watercraft to use the facility.
Initially, room will be available for nine watercraft, but the state permit allows for up to 14 spaces.
“Basically, if it takes off, we’ll add the additional five,” Hubeny said.
In May, the state Department of Environmental Protection issued a Coastal Areas Facilities Review Act (CAFRA) permit for the 14-space personal watercraft dock. The CAFRA permit, which governs coastal areas, is good for five years, Hubeny said.
The project is costing the borough $38,400 for the EZ Port Max 2i docks and piles, he said.
According to Hubeny, the municipal harbor commission began discussing the personal watercraft docking about two years ago. Harbor Manager John Amici “has always been creative about bringing more revenues to the Harbor,” Hubeny said.
The floating docks will be removed for the cold weather.
The harbor has 481 boat slips, with about 455 or about 95 percent occupied, and 172 moorings, with about 135 or about 80 percent occupied, Hubeny said.
The Municipal Harbor office is at 2 Simon Lake Drive, 732-291-1670, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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