City Adopts Residential Dock Tax – Boat Parade Boycott is On

Video courtesy of Geoff West at the Bubbling Cauldron


For the past six months city staff and the Secret Ad Hoc Committee on Harbor Charges(now they call it a work shop – not a committee) has been claiming the state is making them levy the Dock Tax.  In a bizarre volley of verbal backpedalling the city attorney said that the state legislation they have be relying upon to levy the tax doesn’t apply to Newport Harbor.   It didn’t matter.


Mike Henn (made the motion to levy the tax)

Rush Hill

Nancy Gardner

Keith Curry

Steve Rosansky (his parting gift to Newport’s taxpayers)


Leslie Daigle


Ed Selich

Over 100 residents packed the old city council chambers to oppose the tax.  It didn’t matter.  The fix was in.

Our new State Senator Mimi Walters offered by letter to help the city with legislation that would clarify pier owners property rights. Councilman Curry suggested the state get its house in order.  Senator Walters wants to work with us.   Her offer of assistance can be seen HERE.   It didn’t matter.
dock tax - sen. walters newport letter-page-001.jpg
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Kristine Thagard, our counsel offered to sit down with the Ad Hoc Committee that really isn’t an Ad Hoc committee (because it probably violates the open meeting laws) and hammer out a deal.  It didn’t matter.

Steve Baric, our counsel on the state open meeting laws, called them out on likely Brown Act violations related to the Secret Ad Hoc Committee.  It didn’t matter.

14-year old Bobby McCracken told them of the hardship the tax would cause his parents his job as a deck hand on a charter boat.  It didn’t matter.

Lido Island resident Tom Larkin reminded them that the people have beat the council before.  It didn’t matter.

Most residents believe a reasonable adjustment to the dock fee is acceptable,  said Balboa Peninsula resident Pete Pallette.  It didn’t matter.

Then Councilman Rush Hill spoke (See viseo above).

Councilman Hill has already referred to us as “terrorists.”  Now Mr. Hill refers to public testimony as s**t.   His video statement says it all.


The Boat Parade runs December 19 – 23.  Many of you have asked if we will continue to advocate for the Boycott.  My suggestion to you is if you feel we have been treated fairly by the City, leave your lights on and keep your boat in the parade.  If you feel we have not been treated fairly, turn off your house lights and pull your boat out of the parade.


Shortly after voting 5-1 to impose the Dock Tax, the city council reconvened at the new city hall in Fashion Island.  During the Dock Tax debate some councilmembers took exception with speakers commenting on the cost and scope of the new building – estimated at $131 million and headed to $150 million (the land was free).  We here at Stop the Dock Tax refuse to “Tithe to the Taj”  and will be filing a lawsuit against the tax shortly.

Thank you for sticking with us through this unjust process.  We are committed to keep up the fight.  Government at all levels is taxing and regulating every aspect of our lives.  It’s time we stood up to the city council and tell them we’ve had enough.  Once government gets in your pocket they never leave.

Best wishes,

Bob McCaffreyChairman,
Stop The Dock Tax Please check with our web site for the lastest information 



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