Panel Rejects Rent Hike for Boat Dwellers
An attempt by a major leaseholder in Marina del Rey to increase the rent for people living on their boats to at least twice the highest rate charged in the area has been sunk by county officials.
The Los Angeles County Small Craft Harbor Commission on Wednesday endorsed the decision by Director Ted Reed to deny Real Property Management Inc. a minimum $350 surcharge in addition to the monthly slip fee. The highest rate for live-aboards elsewhere in the area is a $175 flat-rate surcharge in Oxnard, according to Reed.
Reed said the proposed rate increase was “not fair and reasonable.” He also said the proposal did not follow the commission’s 1978 guidelines for the marina that limit such surcharges to between 50% and 55% of basic slip fees and require that rates be comparable with other marinas’.
Basic slip fees at Marina del Rey range between $6.25 and $11.48 a linear foot, depending on location and the leaseholder.
The company can appeal Reed’s decision to the Board of Supervisors. Abe Lurie, president of the company, did not say whether he would appeal. During the commission meeting, however, he said that if his request was denied he would reconsider his alternatives.
Lurie, who controls 1,122 of the 6,000 boat slips in Marina del Rey, had notified the county Department of Beaches and Harbors that as of July 15 he intended to impose a 75% surcharge, or a minimum of $350, for any new so-called “live-aboards.”
The county delayed approval of the increase until it could study the matter.
According to Reed’s report, most of the 54 marinas within a 60-mile radius of Marina del Rey have a flat rate for live-aboards. His survey found that rates range from 8% to 71% of basic slip rates, with the highest being $175 in Oxnard.
Reed said a person owning a 35-foot boat at Real Property’s Marina del Rey Hotel’s slip is paying a basic rate of $11 a linear foot, or $385, plus a live-aboard surcharge of $211.75, or 55% of the basic slip fee.
Under a 75% surcharge the live-aboard rate would be $288.75, but Lurie also proposed a $350 minimum. Reed noted that the $350 fee would represent a nearly 91% live-aboard surcharge on a 35-foot boat.
“Mr. Lurie’s proposed live-aboard rates are not fair and reasonable,” Reed concluded.
The commission also declined to hold a public hearing to consider changing the 1978 guidelines limiting live-aboard rates to between 50% and 55%.