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FYI: July 2003 Page 2

FYI — July 2003
By Brad Dunn
   
 
 More of this Feature
• Part 1: Target Practice, Things We Like, and more
• Part 2: A Word With..., and more

 Related Resources
• News/FYI Index

A Word With... Capt. Jerry Taylor
In 1980 Jerry Taylor quit his nine-to-five job as an electronics design engineer and began a boat-delivery service, Jerry Taylor Yacht Deliveries, with his wife, Wendy. Today the Taylors spend fewer than 60 days a year at their South Florida condo and the rest of their time on the water, usually within their specialty area: Maine to Martinique. PMY recently caught up with Jerry to talk about the lifestyle change he made.

Q: You’ve delivered more than 170 vessels. Is this the ideal job for an avid boater?
A: We love it. Of course, it’s not an easy life. Even though we’ve built up a pretty good business, there are still dry spells. But we derive so much pleasure from being on the water. Most of the time, we spend our days doing exactly what we want to do.

Q: How often do you encounter trouble with a boat during a delivery?
A: Even brand-new boats can have major problems. But we enjoy getting to know a boat while underway. We take notes and give the owner a list of recommendations to improve the safety and reliability of the vessel. We also leave the boat cleaner than when we got it. You’d be surprised what that means sometimes: We’ve spent whole trips killing cockroaches or vacuuming dog hair.

Q: Do you find enough time to do your own cruising?
A: Our slow period is mid-summer. That’s when we slip away on our 36-foot Grand Banks and cruise the Bahamas.

Q: Do you ever think about settling down and re-entering the land-based workforce?
A: No. For us it’s really a way of life—not a way to get rich, or to work and save up for something else. People say, “follow your bliss.” Well, we found ours, and we’re following it. I don’t miss wearing a tie at all, or going to the office. We have no plans to retire. You just don’t retire from a way of life that you love.

Police Tax
Tough times call for creative taxing.

That’s how the Florida State Senate saw it in April when it passed a bill giving a portion of the tax on gas sold at marinas to marine police officers.

The move had a twofold impact. It bolstered funds for marine police, whose budget has stayed the same over the last decade despite the state’s boating population having increased by almost one-third. The bill also prevented money from being taken from manatee research and management projects—an idea that was originally proposed on the senate floor.

With the expected additional boost of $2.5 million, the state will be able to employ ten new marine police officers this year.

Where’s the Hu-manatee?
Should speed zones intended to protect manatees be applied to towboat operators rushing to the scene of a disabled vessel? That was the question put to the federal courts in Florida in May, when Rick Rescott, then a SeaTow operator, refused to pay the $100 fine he was given for speeding through the Merritt Island Barge Canal while responding to the call of a sinking boat.

On April 20, 2002, Rescott was pulled over by federal wildlife officers. He explained that he had received a call about “a sinker in the river” and showed them his SeaTow license and a variance that permits him to exceed speed limits in emergencies so the officers accompanied him to the scene, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

Turns out a 20-footer had slid off a boat lift at Newfound Harbor and slowly sunk. Rescott was issued a citation. According to the newspaper, during his day in court, Rescott insisted that he believed lives could have been at stake—though the officers claimed he knew otherwise.

In the end the courts agreed that there was no emergency that warranted a breach of the manatee speed zones and that Rescott had unlawfully refused to pay his fine.

At presstime Rescott had yet to be sentenced. He faces an additional $25,000 fine and prison time.

Got an interesting boating story for this column? Write to FYI, Power & Motoryacht, 260 Madison Ave., 8th Fl., New York, NY 10016. Fax: (917) 256-2282. e-mail: eileen_mansfield@primediamags.com. No phone calls please.

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This article originally appeared in the June 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.

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