Sarasota now charging for mooring liveaboard boats near downtown

SARASOTA — People who live aboard their boats in the water off will now have to pay up.

Starting Nov. 1, boaters will pay at least $250 a month for their space.

The Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports it's all part of the city's $1 million plan to keep boaters from dumping sewage into the water. The plan is also designed to get rid of derelict boats.

About a decade ago, city officials started talking about revamping the mooring field. They say during storms, many boats would break free from their anchors and end up on the shore, or in people's yards.

The city-owned Marina Jack offers boat owners wireless Internet, laundry facilities and sewage pumpout.

The project hasn't been without controversy. But as of Thursday, 23 of the 35 spots were filled.

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