John Burki, 66, known as Captain Jay, has until 5 p.m. Wednesday, to move his boat "Promise" from Gulfport waters, according to City Manager Jim O'Reilly.
On Thursday, Aug. 16, Captain Jay gave a guilty plea to 18 ordinance violations for having the grounded boat in the swim area of Gulfport Beach after Tropical Storm Debby.
Pinellas County Judge Patrick Caddell told Burki he can avoid the nearly $2,000 in fines if he moves his boat out of Gulfport waters within five days, according to City Manager Jim O'Reilly.
“I’m sure that the attorney representing him will be very disappointed if he does not follow through,” Mayor Mike Yakes said at Tuesday night's City Council Meeting.
O'Reilly says the harbormaster will check to see if the boat is still in Gulfport Wednesday evening. If the boat is not moved, O'Reilly will notify the judge and ask for a hearing in September.
"We just hope he complies," O'Reilly said.
The boat has been flagged as "at risk" for becoming a derelict boat, by the Gulfport Police Department. Burki has 90 days from his notice from police to bring his boat into compliance with the law.
Patch has attached the letter sent to Burki from police on August 3.
Currently the boat is anchored in the bay just beyond the buoys in Gulfport beach. Three weeks ago the boat was freed from the sand when a group of about 50 volunteers came out and pushed, pulled and lifted the boat out into the bay. Burki could not be there; he was recovering at Bay Pines VA Hospital
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