Will Introduce Senate Resolution In Response To Tycoons Who Park Yachts In Front of the Iconic American Symbol
TRENTON – Reacting to repeated instances of yacht owners parking their vessels in front of the Statue of Liberty for extended stays, Senator Richard J. Codey today said that he will introduce a Senate resolution calling on the United States Coast Guard to act to prohibit the long-term anchorage of boats in the harbor waters surrounding the national monument that serves as an international symbol of freedom.
A Russian-American oil tycoon, Eugene Shvidler, anchored his mega yacht, Le Grand Bleu, in front of “Lady Liberty” for multiple weeks at a time from April through June, blocking views and hindering access to the statue off the New Jersey coast. In July, the Swiss-Italian scion Ernesto Bertarelli parked his ship in the same waters and, in early August, Reinhold Wurth dropped anchor on his 265-foot ship “Vibrant Curiosity” in the area known as “Liberty Bay.”
“When Emma Lazarus wrote about America welcoming ‘your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,’ it was not an invitation to billionaire oil tycoons to use the waters surrounding the Statue of Liberty as a parking lot for their yachts,” said Senator Codey. “It is unsafe for navigation, unfair to others and completely antithetical to the spirit of one of the world’s most compelling symbols of freedom and equal opportunity.”
Senator Codey’s resolution will have the New Jersey Senate urge the United States Coast Guard to prohibit long-term anchorage in the harbor surrounding the Statue of Liberty “to maintain the public’s ability to enjoy views of the monument and park and to protect against security risks.” Copies of this resolution will also be sent to the Acting Secretary of the United States Department of Homeland Security.
“The Statue of Liberty is a unique and extraordinary feature on the coast of New Jersey, representing freedom for all citizens of the United States and welcoming various peoples from around the world,” Senator Codey said. “Allowing individuals to block the public from viewing the statue denies them the ability to enjoy views of the monument and park and to protect against security risks.”
Yacht owners reportedly anchor in the harbor in order to avoid paying docking fees for their vessels.
Senator Codey will introduce the resolution at the next Senate session.