Block Island Anchoring Rules Under Scrutiny

Current map of Great Salt Pond anchorage and mooring areas.

According to a recent article in the Block Island Times, the New Shoreham Harbors Committee recently discussed whether the designated anchorage in New Harbor (Great Salt Pond), where boaters have been permitted to anchor for many years, is in violation of RI Coastal Resources Management Council policies.

The anchorage area officially occupies what is designated as “Type I” conservation areas by the CRMC, where neither anchoring nor moorings are permitted. However, the town’s anchorage area was established before the CRMC existed.

At least one Harbor Committee member proposed eliminating the anchorage and installing more rental moorings at a cost of $20 per night instead. Others objected to the proposal, pointing out that the boaters who opt to anchor in the pond may not be able to afford the $45 per night rental moorings, yet still contribute to the island’s tourist economy.