City cracks down on ‘liveaboards’ anchored in Port; sewage a concern

Moored boats and barge in the turning basin at the Port of West Sacramento. This section of the port is just south of Industrial Boulevard and west of Harbor Boulevard. (These vessels may or may not be involved in current litigation.


By Steve Marschke
News-Ledger Editor

The City of West Sacramento is apparently cracking down on the “liveaboards,” some of whom have long lived on boats anchored or tied to shore in the Port of West Sacramento’s turning basin.

  Mike Luken, the port director, told the News-Ledger that the crackdown involves litigation with some of the boaters.

“The city is enforcing its long-term anchoring permit,” said Luken. “The city requires that vessels moored more than 90 days obtain a permit. . . and that they renew the permit on an ongoing basis. There are a number of people not complying with it.”

Affected are some recreational boats and barges at the port. Some of them have disposed of their boats, but some boats and barges remain.

“There were some people that removed their vessels voluntarily,” added Luken.

Has the city bought any of these boats to easy the liveaboards out?

“There have not been any cash settlements as of yet,” said Luken.

He referred the News-Ledger to the code enforcement department for more information on the crackdown, but a spokesperson there could not immediately be reached.

One of the concerns about the boaters is about sanitation – essentially, it’s the question of where their sewage goes, if not untreated directly into the port.

  “The permit requires that you utilize a licensed facility for sanitary disposal,” Luken said.

The nearest accessible sewage pumpout station is probably in Rio Vista, he said (a distance too far for a casual boating trip), but the boaters could also used a licensed hauler to remove their waste by truck.

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