Changes coming to Crab Island after floating structures ordinance changes

Okaloosa County commissioners approve changes to floating structures ordinance. (WJHG/WECP)
Okaloosa County commissioners approve changes to floating structures ordinance. (WJHG/WECP)(WJHG)
Published: Feb. 20, 2020 at 3:35 PM CST
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Okaloosa County commissioners approved changes that will impact the floating structures on Crab Island.

The changes include eliminating quota restrictions for licenses, but increasing the license fee and placing more restrictions on floating structures.

Okaloosa County Commissioner Nathan Boyles says, these changes were made to make Crab Island safe for the residents, but also fair to the structures that have historically been out there.

“The commercial structures that are out there are no longer able to stay out there on Crab Island overnight, we had to make sure they wouldn't be docking in some of the residential areas adjacent to Crab Island or in that area and so there's now a prohibition, prohibiting them from docking in those neighborhoods overnight," said Boyles.

The five revisions were made to the floating structures ordinance:

1. Eliminated the ability for commercial floating structures to moor adjacent to residential property when leaving Crab Island and docking each night (as is now required by the ordinance).

2. Expanded the license requirement from floating structures to include all vessels engaged in commercial activity.

3. Eliminated quota restrictions for licenses and the payment of 3% of gross revenues but raised the base license fees.

4. Prohibited ferrying customers to crab island unless the vessel is going to stay on-site with the passengers and required toilet facilities for all commercial vessels over 21 feet in length.

5. Required propeller cages for all vessels under 20 feet in length engaged in commercial activities on Crab Island.

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