La Dana prompts questions
By Michael Turton
Since late this spring, the most common question on the Cold Spring riverfront has been, “What’s with that boat?” A small sailboat, La Dana, has been anchored close to shore, directly across from Moo Moo’s Creamery, for several months. Comments from frequent visitors to the waterfront indicate that the boat has seldom, if ever, left anchor. Residents have also wondered about the legality of leaving a boat anchored for an extended period of time in that location.
Capt. William McNamara, spokesman for the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, said La Dana is believed to be owned by a resident of Nelsonville. The Hudson River, he added, is governed by state laws enforced by the Sheriff’s Office Marine Unit, as well as other state, county and local agencies, while federal boating and navigation laws are enforced by the U.S. Coast Guard.
“It is my understanding … that there is no law restricting the length of time that a boat may be anchored in such a location,” McNamara told The Paper via email.
Asked if there could be a legal issue if a large number of boats anchored in the same location, McNamara said that it is his understanding of applicable laws that, “… anchorage of a boat or boats may become an issue if the location of the anchored craft(s) impedes navigation of other boats or creates an unsafe condition.” As an example he said that if an anchored boat is left in or near a channel or blocking a public boat launch site, “it may constitute a violation of law.”
George Kane, officer-in-charge for the Cold Spring Police Department, said that because La Dana is anchored offshore, the village has no jurisdiction over it.