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Coming Soon: An Open Forum for Tenants of PYM and other Almar managed marinas to discuss issues of concern.

12 April 2007

Mr. Jim Hayes

Vice President, Operations

Almar Management, Inc.

3001 Peninsula Road

Oxnard, CA 93035-4071


Dear Mr. Hayes:

It appears you have a serious management problem at Peninsula Yacht Marina that seems to be leading us into legal controversy that would be unfortunate and undesirable for all involved.

To reiterate the situation as described in my communications of last June:

In 1999, I purchased a 52 foot 1950 Grebe Motoryacht, a valuable historical artifact, at slip E14ET at Peninsula Yacht Anchorage. I had the vessel hauled and surveyed and found her in a nearly ready to sink condition. I immediately spent approximately $20,000 in boatyard repairs to make her float worthy. A copy of the Survey and receipts from the boatyard were provided to the Marina. Since then I had made another $30,000 in above the waterline repairs, including all new wiring. The vessel was not insured prior to my purchase. The slip transfer was executed without insurance.

Unfortunately my presence elsewhere, due to a serious illness in the family, forced me to put the vessel on the market.

When Mr. Hogan's operation took over the Marina, I was asked for a Certificate of Insurance. I explained to the Marina Manager that my insurance broker had several companies that would write a policy ONLY if the vessel were NOT listed for sale. I was told there would be no problem transferring the slip to a creditworthy buyer. I was also asked to sign a dockage agreement that consisted of a long list of obligations for myself, including references to documents not provided, but not so much as a requirement that the Marina even provide a dock. This was rejected by my counsel.

Your letter of 14 June 2006 indicates that transferring the slip simply requires an Insurance Survey and Certificate of Insurance, yet I have had three well qualified offers to purchase the vessel, by buyers willing and able to continue the restoration project, retracted because the people at the Marina Office stated a long list of ridiculous, ever changing demands. One prospective buyer, a past boatyard owner, was told that the slip had to be vacated, the vessel hauled and inspected by the Marina Manager. Then, MAYBE the Marina MIGHT transfer the slip. I was told that if the vessel were removed from the slip, it would not be allowed to return.

Mr. Jim Hayes - 12 April 2007 Page2

My Broker advised me to sue the Marina. I chose not to as my family obligations need my full attention.

In June 2006, I offered to allow PYM to purchase the vessel at a fraction of her value, so the Marina could make arrangements suitable to them. You rejected the offer.

As this matter is mentally and emotionally stressful to me, I searched for and found a national 501(c)3 charity interested in receiving the yacht as a donation. The organization, funded by national corporations, has a good record of restoring yachts and maintaining them available to community groups for youth activities. The Marina told the charity representative that the vessel had to be removed and put on a waiting list for a slip.

This week I received a letter from Jeremy Grewal that purports to be a 30 Day Notice to Vacate for failure to provide a Certificate of Insurance, citing a non-existing agreement, mailed less than 30 days from the effective date. (As PYM will not recognize a dockage agreement transfer to a qualified buyer, I do not recognize the transfer of my agreement with Mr. Hogan's predecessor.)

As we have repeatedly presented arrangements that would meet the needs of the Marina and assure this valuable historical artifact remains in the hands of custodians who understand her value and are committed to her preservation only to be rebuffed, we can only conclude that someone, probably an employee of the Marina, is seeking to acquire the vessel through confiscation.

My main interest at this point is to ensure the preservation of the yacht, so for the last time, I offer a very generous solution that meets the needs of all concerned: arrange with Cameron Arballo at Boats with Causes, 888-228-7320, the immediate transfer of the slip and return my security deposit not later than 30 April 2007. Boats with Causes will immediately have an insurance survey performed and arrange for liability insurance. I am absolutely certain that any reasonable observer would see your rejection of this offer as an attempt to cause me FURTHER emotional and mental distress.

Please understand that I would look to PYM, Alamar Management, Inc., Oxnard Marinas, L.P., Oxnard Marinas, LLC, Westec Marinas, Pacific Marina Development, Inc., First National Bank of San Diego, The County of Ventura, Channel Islands Harbor, and personally, Thomas Hogan, Jeff Pence, yourself, Jeremy Grewal, Lyn Krieger, each and every one of Mr. Hogan's investors, and anyone who might acquire the vessel without compensation to me, to make me whole for any damage suffered, past and future.

I assure you that I am utterly and completely judgment proof.

To indicate how seriously I will pursue this issue, I have posted a copy of this letter at http://peninsulayachtmarina.org , http://almarmanagement.org and http://pacificmarinadevelopment.org .

Certainly the Marina Tenants Association at the Port of Oakland Marinas will be interested in how Mr. Hogan does business, especially the large number of pensioners who were made homeless when he took control of PYA and the dockage increase from $400 per month to $685. Also, the State of California would refuse funds to dispose of an 'abandoned' vessel, when PYM was offered a reasonable alternative.

Mr. Jim Hayes - 12 April 2007 Page3

Further, while the Grand Jury failed to find impropriety in entrusting the operation of a Public Asset to an operation that seems to exist, not to meet the needs of the general boating public, as required by law, but only to enrich private investors, it is likely that the United States Attorney would look more closely. That was the case with the Department of Building Inspection in San Francisco.

If you choose not to resolve this issue promptly and amicably in a way that benefits all, kindly send me contact information for your Registered Agent for Service of Process.

Very truly yours,

CC: Thomas J. Hogan

Supervisor John Flynn, c/o Jim Estomo

Supervisor Linda Parks, c/o Jan Osterhaven

Cameron Arballo via email

31 May 2007

Mr. Jim Hayes

Vice President, Operations

Almar Management, Inc.

3001 Peninsula Road

Oxnard, CA 93035-4071


Dear Mr. Hayes:

Sadly, my patience is at an end.

Two years ago, we had a valid offer to purchase the Water Nymph for $60,000. The buyer canceled the offer due to the outrageous requirements demanded by the marina staff, your agents, preventing the vessel remaining in the slip. Since then, we have paid nearly $14,000 in slip fees. There have been three other offers, all revoked due to the direct actions of your agents.

Last June, you stated that the only requirements for the slip to be offered to a new owner were a completed application, insurance survey and certificate of insurance. In the absence of a buyer and to allow me to direct my full attention to serious family matters, I located a 501(c)3 organization which offered to complete the restoration and use the vessel to provide boating opportunities to local youth. Your agents demanded that vessel be removed from the marina before an application would be accepted, contrary to your assurances to me. The organization has been unable to locate another slip. In April, I asked you to arrange to make the slip available to the charity not later than 30 April 2007. That has not been accomplished. Unfortunately, the charity is now reluctant to accept the vessel due to this dispute and potential future problems.

Due to the actions of you and your agents, we are no longer willing to continue to pay slip fees on the vessel equal to the average home mortgage payment. The Trust hereby abandons the vessel.

We are willing to transfer title to the vessel to the marina to avoid unnecessary legal expense ON RECEIPT OF A LETTER FROM YOU RELEASING THE TRUST, ITS BENEFICIARIES AND TRUSTEES FROM ANY AND ALL CLAIMS by the marina, its owners and management. We would hope that the marina pursues the donation. We would release the marina, its owners, and managers for any and all claims on presentation of evidence that this is accomplished.

Should you auction or sell the vessel, we would release the marina, its owners, and managers from any and all claims in exchange for the proceeds in excess of any VERIFYABLE auction or sales expenses, excluding additional slip fees and marina charges.

I have stopped payment on the check for May slip fees. You may apply our security deposit to that charge.

It is truly unfortunate that your actions and the actions of your agents have caused this situation. I have been exquisitely patient, and will respond only to the above mentioned communications.

Very truly yours,

CC:Thomas J. Hogan

Supervisor John Flynn, c/o Jim Estomo via email

Supervisor Linda Parks, c/o Jan Osterhaven via email

Cameron Arballo via email

Raynor Tsuneyoshi, Director, DBW, c/o Margarita Sanchez via email

August 11, 2006 - Flynn Asks Marina Operators for Compassion

In a press conference at the harbor, Ventura County Board of Supervisors member John Flynn spoke about the plight of boat owners and how the increases in slip rental and liveaboard fees have caused undue hardship.

"This is a difficult issue," Flynn said, speaking to a small group of harbor and area residents July 19. "I understand that businesses must raise their fees from time to time, but many local boat owners have had to face a 35 percent slip rate increase and a doubling of their liveaboard expense."

At issue are rent increases that went into effect in January of this year. Vintage Marina Partners (operators of Vintage Marina and Channel Islands Harbor Marina on the harbor's west side) sent slip lessees a notice last November that warned them of the impending rate increase. For example, a boat owner with a 40-foot slip who had been paying $390 would be expected to pay $527 per month for the same slip under the 35 percent increase.

"I have to look at the slip fees in light of current costs for maintenance and upgrades and to be competitive within the market," Brian Dunn, general manager of Vintage Marina Partners, said at the time to explain the increase. "We looked around at other slip rentals in Ventura County and Southern California, and our rates were below almost all of them."

New construction is expected to begin on the aging Channel Islands Harbor Marina September 1.

Similar increases went into effect at marina facilities operated by Oxnard Marinas LP (locally known as Almar), operator of Anacapa Isle Marina, Peninsula Yacht Marina, Bahia Cabrillo Yacht Landing and others in the harbor. In addition to the rate increases, liveaboard costs increased anywhere from $100 to $225 per month.

"About four years ago, I decided to move on board my boat," said one liveaboard at Peninsula Yacht Marina who did not want to be named. "It was quite affordable until the increase this year. I'm a lucky one; I can still afford to live on my boat, but others cannot."

Boat owners at the press conference cited increases that ranged from $7.20 per foot to $9.50 per foot. Not only were the increases hard to swallow for many boaters, they complained that there have been no improvements made to any of the marinas to justify the increases.

"We have a 40-year-old restroom that needs improvement along with the docks, and nothing is being done," commented one renter who lives aboard his boat at Peninsula Yacht Marina.

Mark Graves, a longtime local boater and activist for the local boating community, told the story of an elderly retired couple in their 80s who had to give their 50-foot boat away due to the increased fees and lack of time to sell the vessel.

"They couldn't afford the increased rents and liveaboard fees," Graves said. "They tried to sell their boat, but had to get out of the marina before they could find a buyer. So, they gave it away. Now they are virtually homeless and relying on the generosity of family and friends for housing."

An owner requesting anony-mity stated that he couldn't afford the increased fees and had been making plans to vacate his slip and find another marina or harbor, but needed more time.

"It's hard to suddenly have to pack up and move your boat - your home," he said. "It takes time to provision and find a new location. I need more than 60 days. I am just asking for more time."

Retired graphic artist John Harder has lived in the harbor for more than 20 years aboard his sailboat Imi Loa, a Columbia 36. He has most recently lived at Bahia Cabrillo Yacht Landing for the past several years.

"I've lived all over this harbor," Harder said. "I went through a terrible divorce and couldn't afford to live on land. Don't know what I am going to do at this point."

The 80-year-old Harder relies on a $1,100 a month Social Security check as his sole source of income. Before the fee hike, he was paying $405 per month. Now he says his rate is $700 per month.

"With my bills and dock fees, I have about $160 left over each month for food and other necessities," Harder said. "I've tried to sell my boat, but it needs an engine and a lot of work. So there aren't many prospects."

"It's not right," Graves agreed. "This is a public resource. The taxpayers own the harbor. You can't price it so high that the local taxpayers can't afford to use their own harbor."

According to Flynn, there seems to be no immediate solution to this problem. He recommends that marina operators allow more time for boaters in hardship cases and have some compassion for those who have nowhere else to go.

"The increases were exorbitant and should have been spread out over time; that might have helped at least some of these people," Flynn said. "The harbor is a public entity and should be operated as such. If we want to operate with a 'what the market can bear' attitude, why not sell it to a private party and let them run it?"

No spokesperson for either Oxnard Marinas LP or the Harbor Department could be reached for comment.

Source: The Log (Ventura County, CA)


Contact us with your concerns: info@peninsulayachtmarina.org