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Rules and Regulations
Town of Winthrop Waterways Rules and Regulations

Section 1: Purpose

The purpose of these rules and regulations is to standardize mooring practices so as to fully utilize the limited area in Winthrop waters, while implementing uniform safety practices. Also, to provide adequate space for all types of recreational usage.

Section 2: Definitions

A. "Harbormaster " shall mean the Harbormaster appointed by the Winthrop board of selectmen.
B. "Winthrop waters" shall mean all waters within the boundaries of the town of Winthrop.
C. "Mooring areas" shall mean those portions of Winthrop waters which shall be designated as such by the Winthrop board of selectmen and/or Harbormaster.
D. "Vessel " shall include every description of watercraft, including non-displacement craft and seaplanes, used or capable of being used as a means of transportation on water.
E. "Owner" shall mean the person listed as owner on the certificate of registration or the documentation certificate.
F. "Mooring" shall mean a semi-permanent anchorage installation, consisting of an approved mooring system.
G. "Registered owner" shall mean the holder of a mooring space assigned by the Harbormaster.
H. "Mooring permit" shall mean a written authorization by the Harbormaster to place a mooring.
I. "Mooring year" shall date annually from April 1st through march 31st and is the period for which a mooring space is assigned.

Section 3: Mooring and Docking Regulations

A. No mooring shall be placed in the waters of Winthrop unless it is in compliance with these regulations.
B. No person shall place or maintain a mooring within the waters of Winthrop without first obtaining a mooring permit from the Harbormaster.
C. No permit will be issued without prior payment of all appropriate fees or fines by the applicant including, but not limited to, annual boat excise tax, if applicable.
D. All moorings shall be registered with the Harbormaster each year. The registration period for any year shall end at 12:00 noon, May 31st. Any moorings that are not registered before this time may be canceled and the mooring space allocated to the waiting list.
E. The Harbormaster shall post a waiting list in the office and in the Winthrop town hall showing the names of persons desiring mooring space, date of application, the area in which such space is desired and the length, beam, draft and displacement of boat for which the mooring space has been requested. All new applications and requests for relocation shall be added to this list in order. Upon availability, the Harbormaster will assign moorings based on the order of this list.
F. An identification sticker will be issued to each registered moored or berthed vessel upon receipt of the annual registration fee. The sticker must be attached to the port bow of each vessel 3 inches aft of registration numbers on forward half of hull so as to be clearly visible for inspection by the Harbormaster
G. The mooring or berthing fee shall be one hundred-seventy five ($175.00) dollars for residents or two hundred-twenty five ($225.00) dollars for non-residents, with boats under twelve (12) feet exempt.
H. Any registered owner shall be deemed to have forfeited his registered mooring space by any one of the following:
1. Removal of tackle by registered owner and notification to the Harbormaster that the space is available.
2. Failure to re-register for such space by may 31st of any season.
3. Failure to replace any substandard mooring tackle after notification by the Harbormaster (see sec. 3-0).
4. Failure to buoy or restore mooring within thirty (30) days after being notified by the Harbormaster that the mooring is submerged. In the event that a mooring is lost, the owner must report the loss to the Harbormaster as soon as possible.
5. Failure to comply with the town of Winthrop's mooring fee policy.
I. Abandoned or forfeited moorings. Or any mooring installed in the waters of Winthrop without permission from the Harbormaster, shall be considered public nuisances. Such moorings and vessels maybe removed by the Harbormaster at the risk and expense of the owner, if the owner fails to remove it within forty eight (48) hours after written notice from the Harbormaster. Said notice shall be secured to the mooring and a copy mailed to the owner's address as recorded on the mooring permit.
J. Mushrooms, or approved mooring systems, must be used.
K. Scope shall be determined by the Harbormaster.
L. Buoys shall be spherical and white with a one (1) inch blue band visible above the tide level at all times. Metal buoys shall not be used, all chain floatation buoys shall be plainly and clearly visible above the tide level at all times. The permit number, issued by the Harbormaster shall be applied to the mooring buoy with two (2) inch high letters for identification and must be visible at all times.
M. Winter mooring spars/sticks shall be upright at all times (not less than forty (40) degrees) at any period of tide and must be clearly visible when no boat is secured to the mooring. The permit number issued by the Harbormaster shall be applied to the mooring float in one (i) inch high letters for identification and must be visible at all times. Winter sticks shall be removed on or before the fifteenth of may and shall not be set until on or after the fifteenth of September of each calendar year. Any winter sticks that are not removed by may 15th may be considered abandoned and may be removed by the Harbormaster. No space may be reserved unless a winter stick/spar or mooring buoy is present at all times marking a mooring. Unmarked mooring chains dropped to the bottom are considered abandoned by the Harbormaster.
N. All Winthrop moorings shall be inspected at least once every five years by the Harbormaster or an approved inspector, appointed by the board of selectmen, at the mooring owner's expense. Inspections conducted by the mooring owner are not acceptable. Moorings shall be hauled for visual inspeci1on. If an inspection reveals that any tackle has become damaged or worn by one third of its normal diameter, the tackle shall be replaced accordingly. Failure to correct deficiencies shall be grounds for revocation of the mooring permit by the Harbormaster.
O. No mooring permit shall be transferable except within the immediate family. The immediate family shall include mother, father, sister, brother, children, spouse, domestic partner or lineal descendants. The Harbormaster may permit temporary use of a mooring by another boat upon application by the mooring permit holder.
P. Rafting is limited to two vessels on a single mooring and will only be allowed providing it does not interfere with adjacent single moorings or anchorages. Boats in raft shall be manned at all times.
Q. The placement of temporary floats and/or rafts held by anchors or bottom moorings is subject to written approval of the Harbormaster all floats or rafts must be identified with assigned registration numbers to the landward and seaward sides of the float or raft in contrasting colors and a minimum of two (2) inches in height.

Section 4: Waterways Rules and Regulations

A. No motorboat shall operate at a speed that shall cause a wash or wake that may endanger property or life and in no event shall any boat exceed a speed limit of (6) knots in any mooring area.
B. Water skiing is allowed only off of Front Beach (Winthrop Shore Drive) and Yirrell Beach (Shirley Street). Water skiing shall be prohibited within one hundred-fifty (150) feet bathers, divers, piers, wharves, floats, moored or other boats or of any shore. No person shall operate a boat towing a water skier in navigable channels.
C. No person shall operate a motorboat (a boat with machinery) within one hundred-fifty (150) feet of any beach or designated swimming area except at headway speed.
D. Personal watercraft shall not be operated at other than headway speed within one hundred-fifty (150) feet of any moored or anchored boat or vessel, swimming area, dock or float.
E. The discharge of oil, sewage, garbage, rubbish or other debris from boats on the Winthrop waterways is prohibited.
F. No person shall operate any vessel on the Winthrop waterways when under the influence of intoxicating liquor, narcotic drug, barbituate or marijuana.
G. The operator of any vessel on the Winthrop waterways shall provide a coast guard approved personal floatation device, types i, or ii, for each person aboard such vessel. (c.m.r 207: p 15)
H. All boating accidents occurring in Winthrop waters, where damage exceeds $500.00 or results in death, missing person or requires medical treatment more than first-aid, shall be reported to the Harbormaster and to:

Division of Marine and Recreational Vehicles
100 Cambridge Street
Boston, MA 02202

And also reported to the nearest USCG facility if the damage is over $1000.00.

Section 5: Compatibility with Other Governmental Regulations

Nothing contained herein shall be held or construed to supercede or conflict with or interfere with or limit jurisdiction of the United States government or limit or conflict with the laws or regulations. In any case, the stricter more rule or regulation shall apply.

Section 6: Enforcement and Fines

A. Violation of these boating rules and regulations shall be subject to a fine of fifty dollars ($50.00) for each violation and for each similar subsequent violation within a calendar year. Each day of a continuing violation shall be a separate offense.
B. These rules and regulations may be enforced by the Harbormaster any assistant or deputy harbor, any police officer or any other agent or person appointed by the Winthrop Board of Selectmen.
C. Any person aggrieved by any decision of the Harbormaster may file an appeal with the Winthrop board of selectmen by delivering such appeal, in writing, to the Winthrop town hall within fifteen (15) days of the ruling of the Harbormaster. Such appeal shall state specifically the nature of the ruling and the reason why such person is aggrieved.

Section 7: Severability

In the event any provision, section or clause of these rules and regulations is hereafter found to be invalid, such invalidity shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of these rules and regulations. The Winthrop board of selectmen may make changes from time to time, as they deem necessary.

Section 8: Abandonment

Nothing contained herein shall be construed as giving the vessel owner the right of abandonment of any property or vessel to the Town of Winthrop.

Winthrop Town Hall 1 Metcalf Square, Winthrop, MA 02152
Phone: 617.846.1852
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