States across the USA are taking steps to deal with an armada of derelict boats abandoned by their owners in a tough economy:
•In Massachusetts,Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick signed a bill this month that gave local governments the power to seize abandoned vessels. The problem was growing faster than the state’s ability to deal with it, says Michael Nichols, legal counsel to Democratic state Rep. Antonio Cabral, who introduced the bill.
“The recession was affecting people’s ability to keep and maintain a boat,” Nichols says. “To have abandoned vessels taking up valuable space in the marinas and harbors was a problem.”