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• March, 2014
⇑⇓THE VOCAL AND IGNORANT MINORITY My sailboat SEAduction was impounded at Marina Coral in Ensenada. Last Saturday I received a call from the marina management that my boat was released. All my paperwork was in order, but I was in Utah when they called and asked for it, so I couldn't show it to them. But I want to thank Boatowners are breathing a sigh of relief. Latitude for keeping everyone updated. I just got back home from Puerto Vallarta, and some of the locals would have people believe the whole thing was Latitude's fault for writing about it. See you on this year's Ha-Ha. Dan Lawler SEAduction, Catalina 42 Mk II Salt Lake City, UT
LATITUDE / RICHARD
The Environmental Paint Company
Richard — Tristan was an accomplished sailor and a fine storyteller, but not always a role model. Sure, we could have sailed off with Profligate in the middle of the night and not gotten caught, but Mexico has too much to offer for us to give up on it so quickly because of a blunder by one sub-agency of Hacienda. The strange thing about this whole episode is that we believe AGACE actually thought it was doing something great and was indeed going to find a bunch of big "tax cheats" and become national heroes. Because lord knows Mexico — where hardly anybody pays any tax — needs to collect taxes in order to finance better schools, local roads, and social services. But AGACE's having done so much damage to Mexico's reputation, it won't even matter if it catches a few tax cheats.
Dan — Yours is a common story. AGACE really blew it. As for people in Vallarta — probably a few members of the Vallarta YC — claiming the whole thing was Latitude's fault, it wouldn't surprise us. A small group there has been as ignorant of the facts as it has been vocal. No, being impounded didn't mean a boatowner didn't have all the proper papers. No, having a boat impounded did not mean a boatowner didn't follow the proper procedures. No, an 'audit' by AGACE was nothing like a boarding inspection by the navy. No, a boat in 'precautionary embargo' wasn't legally free to leave the dock — unless the marina signed up as a despositaria and gave permission. No, boatowners who had their boats impounded were not 'Ugly Americans' who thought Mexico should conform with their wishes. No, not all AGACE inspections were conducted the same way. No, not every valid TIP came with a sticker. No, not all U.S. boats have HIN numbers. And finally, no, Mexican maritime law and regulations are not clear or well understood, as evidenced by the fact that many officials don't even know the law. In a typical month, we receive a tremendous volume of letters. So if yours hasn't appeared, don't give up hope. We welcome all letters that are of interest to sailors. Please include your name, your boat's name, hailing port and, if possible, a way to contact you for clariﬁcations. By far the best way to send letters is to email them to richard@ latitude38.com. You can also mail them to 15 Locust, Mill Valley, CA, 94941, or fax them to (415) 383-5816.
The March 2014 issue of the West's premier sailing and marine magazine.