City Council abandons dock plan for dinghy storageThe saga of the dinghies continues. A month ago, the Hudson City Council thought it had a solution to providing a place for sailboat mooring holders to store the small rowboats that they use to get to their sailboats.
By: Randy Hanson, Hudson Star-Observer
The saga of the dinghies continues.
A month ago, the Hudson City Council thought it had a solution to providing a place for sailboat mooring holders to store the small rowboats that they use to get to their sailboats.
Gordy Jarvis, owner of Afton-Hudson Cruise Lines, had offered to provide docks for the dinghies along with a larger dock he hopes to build for his Grand Duchess riverboat.
The council at its Nov. 19 meeting authorized Public Works and Parks Director Tom Zeuli to apply for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permits needed to expand Jarvis’ dock along the dike road in Lakefront Park.
But at a council meeting Monday night, Mayor Alan Burchill announced that the sailboat owners aren’t interested in that plan, which would have added $100 to the annual $575 mooring fee they pay the city.
The question then for the council was whether Zeuli should proceed with submitting revised permit applications for an expansion of the Afton-Hudson Cruise Lines docks, without the docks for dinghies.
In the end, the council agreed to postpone filing the applications until Zeuli talks with Jarvis to see if he is interested in proceeding.
Under the previous plan, the sailboat owners would have paid for the $15,000 dock expansion through the increase in the mooring fee.
Alderpersons questioned whether Jarvis would want to go ahead with expanding his dock if he has to bear the full cost.
He reportedly hoped to extend the dock at an angle, making it easier to dock the Grand Duchess and provide space for a second riverboat.
Alderperson Randy Morrissette II said the council should get some public input on Jarvis’ plans. He said downtown parking is limited, and questioned whether it should be taken up by riverboat customers.
Two sailboat owners addressed the council.
John Lown of Minneapolis was concerned about Jarvis’ dock extending into the mooring area. Part of Jarvis’ plan was to provide addition space for pleasure craft visitors to the city.
Lown said his sailboat had been hit twice by power boats traveling through the mooring area.
Roger Johnson said he was the designated spokesman for the mooring holders. He asked to present what he said is now the sailboat owners’ solution for dinghy storage.
“You turned down the solution,” Mayor Alan Burchill told Johnson. “Every time we propose something you turn it down.”
Johnson acknowledged that the mooring holders haven’t spoken in a unified voice in the past, but said that has changed. He said the group of some 49 mooring holders have been communicating by email and now agree on a plan.
He said they wanted to go back to a previous plan to build stairs from the dike road to the water’s edge, and address the appearance of dinghies.
“You’re saying you want to go back to the dike road?” asked Alderperson Mary Yacoub, who was a supporter of the council’s action in September to end the practice of allowing owners to beach their dinghies along the dike road. That vote was 4-2.
Burchill told Johnson that he should take the sailboat owners’ new proposal to the Park Board.