Does the Vessel i Capt. Have to be registered commercial ?

HookerUPHookerUP Posts: 61 Deckhand
I went down to the Tax Collectors office to renew my occupational licence as a Capt. They told me they would not issue me one because my vessel is not registered commercial. Then i asked them when i deliver a vessel or use another vessel why does that not have to be a commercial vessel? They said it did.. I cannot believe this is true. I called FWC a couple times with we will call you back on that... well no call backs. Its is my understanding that i am hired under a service contract, my services are rendered. I am not selling fish or chartering, renting vessels,as would constitute a charter. Sooo whats the deal? anyone?

Replies

  • 9-Lives9-Lives Posts: 2,113 Captain
    That's a good question and I see where your coming from. I'm not faced with that as I have my boat registered commercial-charter, but IF your not taking people for hire on your personal boat, I also see NO reason that it should have to be registered that way. Also, would they not issue you an occupational license if you didn't own a boat? Good luck and I hope you get this cleared up
    marlin_baitball.gif
  • Bite N HoldBite N Hold Posts: 1,328 Officer
    My boats are not registered commercially and I do charters. Our county didn't have that issue. If you captain on someone else's boat no one can expect you or them to have that boat registered commercially.
    FOR SALE-Old Homosassa Vacation Rental
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  • HookerUPHookerUP Posts: 61 Deckhand
    St. Lucie tax collector is saying the boat needs to be commercial as well and FWC is impossible to get an answer from. When i use to own a boat rental/eco tour/guide service 5 years ago thier was no problem as long as i showed i had insurance. Now everyone has a different answer but no one knows or can not show me anything in writing to suggest either way.

    "love my country...but fear my government"
  • Gary S. ColecchioGary S. Colecchio Posts: 24,922 Officer
    That occupational license is for a charter operator. You don't need a charter license to transport vessels. If they don't have a license for that, you don't need one. FWC has no involvement in issuing occupational licenses.
    "If I can't win, I won't play." - Doris Colecchio.

    "Well Gary, the easiest way to look tall is to stand in a room full of short people." - Curtis Bostick

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  • GreyRiderGreyRider Posts: 61 Deckhand
    Commercial vessel defined in F.S. 327.02 (5) “Commercial vessel” means:
    (a) Any vessel primarily engaged in the taking or landing of saltwater fish or saltwater products or freshwater fish or freshwater products, or any vessel licensed pursuant to s. 379.361 from which commercial quantities of saltwater products are harvested, from within and without the waters of this state for sale either to the consumer, retail dealer, or wholesale dealer.


    http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&Search_String=&URL=0300-0399/0327/Sections/0327.02.html
  • HookerUPHookerUP Posts: 61 Deckhand
    Man there are a lot of "or's" in that paragraph...lol. So according to the 327.02, none of that applies to a guide service since we do not "land" fish or sell any products.
  • Gary S. ColecchioGary S. Colecchio Posts: 24,922 Officer
    When applying for an occupational license as a fishing or tour guide, most local governments require your vessel to be registered as commercial since your vessel is " for hire". It has nothing to do with catching a fish under state statute.

    The requirement is intended to assure that your vessel is equipped with appropriate safety gear and within operating guidelines as prescribed in the appropriate CFR for the vessel length and weight.

    If you are simply operating a business as a vessel transporter, you do not, if you need a home based occupational license at all. The qualifier as I understand it is ownership of a boat. So if you operate a charter vessel, regardless of the use, your vessel needs a commercial registration to obtain a local occupational business license and must be equipped with the appropriate commercial gear to conform to federal guidelines beyond that of recreational boat.

    Registering a vessel is as easy as filling out a short form and costs very little.

    If you are operating as a charter on a recreational vessel so equipped, you are at risk of a citation from your favorite local marine law enforcement agency.
    "If I can't win, I won't play." - Doris Colecchio.

    "Well Gary, the easiest way to look tall is to stand in a room full of short people." - Curtis Bostick

    "All these forums, with barely any activity, are like a neglected old cemetery that no one visits anymore."- anonymouse
  • 9-Lives9-Lives Posts: 2,113 Captain

    Registering a vessel commercial is as easy as filling out a short form and costs very little until your Insurance company finds out about it or refuses a claim


    Sorry, but felt the need to complete your sentence.


    If what you say above is true, and I have no reason to think it's not, that really is unfair in his set of circumstances.
    marlin_baitball.gif
  • Gary S. ColecchioGary S. Colecchio Posts: 24,922 Officer
    Thank you. I was going to mention that, but a licenced mariner operating a charter business should know all these things.:wink
    "If I can't win, I won't play." - Doris Colecchio.

    "Well Gary, the easiest way to look tall is to stand in a room full of short people." - Curtis Bostick

    "All these forums, with barely any activity, are like a neglected old cemetery that no one visits anymore."- anonymouse
  • HookerUPHookerUP Posts: 61 Deckhand
    I currently have a e-mail into Coast Guard Group Miami for the correct info... Will keep posted on final assessment.
  • Gary S. ColecchioGary S. Colecchio Posts: 24,922 Officer
    The Coast Guard does not issue occupational licenses nor do they have any jurisdiction over their issuance.
    "If I can't win, I won't play." - Doris Colecchio.

    "Well Gary, the easiest way to look tall is to stand in a room full of short people." - Curtis Bostick

    "All these forums, with barely any activity, are like a neglected old cemetery that no one visits anymore."- anonymouse
  • coachgun1coachgun1 Posts: 301 Deckhand
    What type Capt. license do you have? If you have an OUPV or "six-pack" license it is for operating a vessel for hire. That vessel would have to be registered as commercial to be legal.
  • HookerUPHookerUP Posts: 61 Deckhand
    I have a Fifty ton masters with sail and towing. And although the CG does not have anything to do with the occupational, They have everything to do with safety requirements and classification of vessels due to size and use in said areas. There are like 15 different commercial registrations to be had and the CFRs are very vague and do not cover small commercial vessels very well.
  • Gary S. ColecchioGary S. Colecchio Posts: 24,922 Officer
    As a licensed and practicing professional mariner, I am expected to be familiar with applicable CFRs and state and local licensing requirements necessary to run my business.

    But thats just me.

    This discussion speaks to the need for the state to regulate charter boat operators as professionals .
    "If I can't win, I won't play." - Doris Colecchio.

    "Well Gary, the easiest way to look tall is to stand in a room full of short people." - Curtis Bostick

    "All these forums, with barely any activity, are like a neglected old cemetery that no one visits anymore."- anonymouse
  • shempshemp Posts: 435 Deckhand
    FWC will/should only regulate the FISHING aspect of chartering (ie, get your 200$ vessel recreational fishing license)
    FWC LEO may also make sure you are safety compliant (flares, PFDs, etc)
    USCG are the ones who regulate chartered vessels (safety info posted, chartering, etc) and they're the ones (if i'm not mistaken) that give out 6-paks, 50 tons, etc
    No idea about your occupational license; in pinellas my city (st. pete) has a buisness tax requirement (65$) and if you're a solo operation and do not incorporate, and use your legal name in the 'business name' (ie: joe smiths' fishing charter) that is all that is required to exist as a business.
    I have insurance for my vessel, etc. And a waiver of liability. If i did chartering full time I'd go LLC for liability reasons, but as i understand it i'd have to file w/ the florida department of revenue or whatever they're called.

    Mind you, this is inshore stuff. Offshore stuff (at least in the gulf) requires a whole pile of endorsements, fed. permits, etc.

    hope this helps, but sounds like you're suffering from typical lack of cooperation b/t compartmentalized gov. agencies who don't talk to each other or speak to each other

    Like if you get a traffick ticket, you've gotta be vigilent to make sure you don't get screwed over b/c the LEA for the area, court, and dmv all require you to report what happened in one way or another. Feel free to argue, but i'm speaking from my personal excperiences (headaches).
  • abacofeverabacofever Posts: 377 Officer
    Missed something...? Why would you get an Occupational Lic. in the first place. The original post does not say anything about owning a vessel of any kind. I looked at the post as the poster is just a Captain taking whatever jobs come his way.
  • abacofeverabacofever Posts: 377 Officer
    and..to the best of my knowledge The State of Florida does not have a regulated Guide Service Program of any kind for either Hunting or Fishing.
  • HookerUPHookerUP Posts: 61 Deckhand
    "To be a saltwater fishing guide in Florida, you must comply with U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) requirements. The U.S. Coast Guard (USGC) requires all operators of for-hire vessels to have a Captain license.
    Charter vessels must be commercially registered.
    Charter, headboat and saltwater fishing guide operations must have an FWC charter captain or boat license to cover their passengers, who are not required to hold a recreational saltwater fishing license."
    As far as FWC.. this is about all i can find on the subject of guides, notice the mention of an FWC Charter Captain. any idea what exactly that is? Notice they mention" must be commercially registered". Well they neglect to inform or give an explanation of which commercial registration is applicable to which commercial application. And somehow i am thinking if by some chance you get "inspected" and you have the wrong registration for your vessel there will be some sort or implications. So it would be nice to avoid that part If someone from FWC,Tax collectors office or USCG could give me a concise answer on that.

    As far as safety, according to the CFRs, commercial vessels require different standards that are set for larger vessels, there is no way that those standards can be held to an 18' flats boat.

    I Capt part time for individuals on their own vessels under their corporations. So i really had no need for an occupational licence. But now that i have finished rebuilding my own vessel the need is there but it seems as the information to register it correctly and conform to commercial saftey standards is not there or readily available.

    Its one of those deals when you try to do the "right thing" by educating yourself to the application. But it seems as no one knows the correct standards for the application .
  • Gary S. ColecchioGary S. Colecchio Posts: 24,922 Officer
    The "correct standards" to a obtain a local ( municipal or county) occupational license reside within the code of ordinances of that authority. That local authority can require whatever they choose. They can require that all charter vessels be painted bright red as a condition of issuance.

    I held an occupational licence in Palm Beach, which required corporate documentation as well as commercial vessel registration. When I moved to Lee, they required those as well as an affidavit from a marina that agreed to host my business.

    So, if you want to operate your charter business within federal state and local law, rule and ordinance, you need to to comply with each, severally and individually despite conflict or overlap.

    It's not that difficult to figure out.
    "If I can't win, I won't play." - Doris Colecchio.

    "Well Gary, the easiest way to look tall is to stand in a room full of short people." - Curtis Bostick

    "All these forums, with barely any activity, are like a neglected old cemetery that no one visits anymore."- anonymouse

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