Nov. 2, 2004 V.I. Coral Reef National Monument rangers issued tickets in early October to two St. John boaters who had tied up to the mangroves in Hurricane Hole, the park announced in a news release issued Tuesday.
They were fined $250 each for violating the park's regulations that prohibit lines or ropes from being tied to mangroves or other shoreline vegetation.
Rangers on patrol discovered the violations.
Park spokesman Beulah Dalmida-Smith said the park wants to remind users that although it infrequently gives out tickets, called "citations" in park parlance, it does do so.
"The regulations are continually enforced," she said.
Additionally, the park wants boaters to know that they can't put their boats into Hurricane Hole until 96 hours before a storm threatens. They must remove the boat within 72 hours after the storm or the threat of a storm is over, said Rafe Boulon, the park's chief of resource management. Violations of this rule will cost the violator $250.
However, boaters may leave their ground tackle for the duration of hurricane season as long as they get a permit from the park. The ground tackle must be marked with a buoy.
To get a free permit once you've put your ground tackle in place for the first storm threat, send a letter with the name and registration or documentation number to Superintendent, V.I. Coral Reef National Monument, 1300 Cruz Bay Creek, St. John, VI 00830. If the letter is mailed, enclose a self-addressed-stamped envelope so the park can send you a receipt. You may also fax your request to 693-9301 or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Boulon will fax or e-mail your receipt.
Coral Reef National Monument operates on interim regulations until the final ones are issued. They can be found at www.gpoaccess.gov/ecfr under Title 36, parts 1-99 for National Parks. Regulations for V.I. National Park and Coral Reef National Monument are found under Section 7.
Enforcement officers involved in issuing the tickets could not be reached for comment.
Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.
Publisher's note : Like the St. John Source now? Find out how you can love us twice as much — and show your support for the islands' free and independent news voice.. click here.