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No Smooth Sailing for Harbor Chief's Plan for a Tall Ship

Ventura County supervisor balks at fundraiser to pay off the vessel and bring it to Oxnard.

March 17, 2004|From a Times Staff Writer

Plans to bring a 154-foot-high tall ship to Channel Islands Harbor for educational tours hit a snag Tuesday when Ventura County Supervisor Linda Parks objected to the county's participation.

Harbor Director Lyn Krieger had sought approval from the Board of Supervisors to spend $60,000 on a fundraising effort aimed at paying off the Tole Mour's loan and bringing the tall ship to the harbor for permanent display.

Parks said she was unwilling to commit the money at a time the county faces a potential $46-million shortfall in next year's budget. That money could be better spent saving a staff position, Parks said.

But Supervisors Kathy Long and Steve Bennett said the investment would likely pay off in the long run. Tole Mour is a working schooner that takes children on three- and five-day voyages to learn about marine science, oceanography and sailing.

The ship, currently docked in Long Beach, would be moved to Oxnard once the details were worked out. Larry Janss, president of Pacific Islands Foundation of Thousand Oaks, which owns the ship, said his nonprofit group was committed to providing educational opportunities for local schoolchildren.

A vote on the matter was delayed because two supervisors were absent from Tuesday's meeting. Additional debate is expected at the board's April 13 meeting.

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