Mid and East Antrim councillors have agreed to a 10 percent levy for those classed as ‘live aboards’ at Carrickfergus Marina.
The recommendation was made at a recent meeting of the MEA Maritime Board, during which members were told that there are currently five individuals living onboard their vessels at the Marina and harbour.
“To date they have berthed at the same rates as those applicable to leisure users,” a member’s report read.
“Under the current berthing contract a person would be considered as living aboard if they spend more than sixty days on board in any contract period.”
Speaking at the meeting, Carrickfergus Marina harbour master Nigel Thompson indicated that live aboards are using the facilities at the seafront “more than the ordinary boat owner”.
Responding to a query from Maritime Board chairman, Councillor Jim Brown, Mr Thompson clarified that the extra charge would not however be retrospective and would only be applied any future persons applying to live aboard.
Members agreed that future applicants must also agree to a number of conditions.
These included the fitting of a holding tank onto their vessel into which all outlets must be discharged.
Live aboards would also be required to secure any outlet on their vessel which is capable of discharging directly or indirectly into the sea with a tamper-proof seal.