Last week 175 residents, political leaders, and Newport Harbor supporters donated over $550,000 to kick off the Newport Harbor Foundation. The Foundation’s goal is to return local control of our harbor to the city.
We celebrated the 50th Anniversary of the Duffy Electric Boat. Duffy’s passion for the harbor spans decades.
With 25 miles of frontage, almost 10,000 boats of all shapes and sizes, kayaks, paddle boards, sailing clubs, and charter boats the harbor resembles the 405 Freeway on a busy weekend.
An estimated seven million visitors per year use Newport Harbor’s complex ecosystem that generates an estimated $1 billion per year of economic activity.
Our harbor is essentially a city within the city.
We believe our harbor asset needs to be properly managed by the city.
Our mission is to “Take Back Our Harbor.” It begins with Newport Beach creating our own Harbor Public Safety Department operated by our city, not the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.
The Foundation will raise over $2.5 million to purchase and donate a fire boat and police boats to the city for a Harbor Public Safety Department.
This plan does not displace the Sheriffs Harbor Patrol They will continue to use their Homeland Security grant to police the coastline for drug runners and illegal immigrants. They will be available for large-scale emergencies in the harbor through existing mutual aid agreements.
Our Harbor Public Safety Department will use the city’s existing police, fire and lifeguards to make the harbor safe for residents and tourists. We believe local control of the harbor is best achieved by Newport Beach running the show.
If you agree, sign up for regular updates at www.newportharborfoundation.org.
Dennis Durgan / Chairman, Newport Harbor Foundation, Past Newport Beach Harbor Master
This first appeared at NewportBeachIndy.com