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Boat Auction this week!

Judy Van Put - Columnist
Posted 7/13/20

As many anglers know, New York City's Department of Environmental Protection allows rowboats for fishing to be kept on our Catskill Reservoirs. We're in the midst of the lazy hazy days of …

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Boat Auction this week!

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As many anglers know, New York City's Department of Environmental Protection allows rowboats for fishing to be kept on our Catskill Reservoirs. We're in the midst of the lazy hazy days of summer….and for many, the thought of being out in a boat on a cool scenic stretch of water, with blue skies above and gentle waves lapping against the sides is a perfect remedy for a hot summer's day.

And for those who long for the opportunity to own a boat and enjoy boating recreation, there is good news -- the NYC DEP has announced their annual Boat Auction -- a much-anticipated event that many look forward to, as it's a great way to purchase a boat for a good price. The DEP collects rowboats from New York City-owned lands that have been abandoned or confiscated, and each year they auction off these vessels.

There were two auctions held last year; one in July and one in October 2019, for boats located East and West of the Hudson River; all bidding was done online. This summer the auction is being held this week - starting July 13 and will be live for 10 days, through July 23, 2020 for boats located East of the Hudson River (no auction is listed for boats located West of the Hudson but bidders need not live East of the Hudson to bid online, and it is still a good opportunity to purchase a boat.)

There will be no mail-in bidding in this auction; the DEP has used this online system to sell boats since 2017, finding that this system is easier for buyers and sellers alike.

To register to bid on a boat, visit the auction website: http://www.PublicSurplus.com and click on the register button. You will be guided through the process by the online registration system. You'll need to verify your email address and telephone number, and once registered, you will be able to bid on the selected boat or boats. You can register at any time and bid once the auction is live.

The bidding process is easy and can be done from your computer; if you don't have a computer, boats can be viewed via a tablet or smart phone. Boats will be viewable at the start of the auction. Due to Covid-19 regulations, there will be no in-person viewing of boats; however, at least six photos of each boat will be available for bidders to view online so that in-person boat viewing is not necessary. To view the boats offered for sale in the auction, interested buyers must visit the website located above and type “Boats DEP-BWS” in the search box to see the boats that are available for sale. Each lot will have a unique lot number titled M#. Use this number to search for the lot or to find a specific boat. You can track your bid progress and increase your bid throughout the time that the auction is live, similar to the format used by Ebay.

If you are the winning bidder, you may need to pay a State of New York sales tax. A buyer's premium of 9.5 percent will be added to the final sale price with a $1 minimum charge per auction for payment collections. (This is a service fee charged by the auction company.) The buyer's premium will be visible during the bidding process and will be added to the total bid. Payment of the winning bidders is outlined on the website, which accepts wire transfers or credit cards; no cash, checks or money orders are accepted.

After payment is received and processed, winning bidders need to make an appointment with the Mahopac Boat Office. The contact information for the Mahopac Boat Office is 914-232-1309.

You'll need to bring proof of payment to pick up the boat; all boats must be picked up by the date specified on the individual auction. Bidders will be notified by email if they are the successful bidder. Successful bidders must email their signed, printed auction receipt along with a photocopy of their driver's license to the boat office prior to their appointment.

Documents can be emailed to MBOmail@dep.nyc.gov along with your name and BOAT AUCTION in the subject line. If you cannot email these documents, bring your signed auction receipt and a photocopy of your driver's license with you to your appointment.

When picking up your boat, you will be required to follow all protocols established at the boat office to ensure that proper social distancing guidelines are followed.

For additional information on the boat auction, or if you have any problems with registering or bidding, visit the website at www.PublicSurplus.com and click on the help link at the top left corner.

During regular business hours, you will also be able to click the “CHAT” link and get direct help from customer service. If you still need help, email support@publicsurplus.com.

Note that you are not obligated to keep the boat on any NYC reservoir, and can use it anywhere you please. If you do wish to keep the boat on a NYC reservoir, it must be steam cleaned and be registered for the particular reservoir you choose. Information of placing a boat on a NYC reservoir can be found at this link: www1.nyc.gov/site/dep/recreation/boating.page.

Judy Van Put is a long-time member of the NYS Outdoor Writers Association, and is the recipient of the New York State Council of Trout Unlimited's Professional Communications Award.

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