Volusia looking for money to remove abandoned boats

- Volusia county leaders say there are 13 vessels in the water ways that are either what they call derelict or at risk. Not only are they eye sores, but they can be very dangerous.

If you drive over the Seabreeze bridge in Daytona Beach you see some beautiful boats and wildlife, but you also see boats left to rot. Some are completely submerged, others are sticking out of the water.

A.J. Mancini works for Action Watersports. They rent jet skis and boats and they always have to remind customers to look out for these abandoned boats.

He said, "If they fell off down there in the water they can get hurt pretty bad with the stuff off the boat, but uh, loose ropes and stuff get tangled in the props in the jet skis or the boats and you don’t want that."

So, why not just get them out of the water? County leaders say it’s not that easy.

They say it’s difficult to find owners of these boats, and it’s also costly to remove them.

But, now they’re trying to come up with the hundreds or even thousands per boat to remove the 13 they’ve found so far in Volusia.

Fox 35 News has learned the county is now planning on applying for funding to remove the boats. They’ll be asking for money from the Florida Inland Navigation District and state as well as the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at the beginning of July.

The question many leaders struggle with is, at what point is it the county’s responsibility to use tax payers money to remove boats?

FWC says efforts are made to find the owners first, if they can’t afford to pay for the removal, the county will.AJ Mancini think’s it’s a good idea.

The county is hoping to start removing boats by the end if the summer. 

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