Oregon has an abandoned and derelict vessel program that is managed by the Oregon State Marine Board. The program includes legislation and procedures for delegating authority to an enforcement agency to seize and remove abandoned and derelict vessels from state lands and waters. Oregon’s ADV program does not address the taking of abandoned or derelict vessels that occur on private property, which must be dealt with through abandoned property laws or reported to an appropriate enforcement agency.

Legislative Summary

Oregon’s ADV program is legislated through Oregon Revised Statutes (OAR) for small watercraft under the Abandoned and Derelict Vessels sections, OAR 830.908 to 830.948. Under this legislation, it is illegal for the owner of a vessel, once notice is given by an enforcement agency that the vessels is deemed abandoned or derelict, to fail to remove the vessel within the time specified on the notice. The authority to remove these vessels is given to an enforcement agency, state or federal, that has jurisdiction over the lands or waters that the vessel occupies. Vessels that pose a public safety risk or a navigational hazard can be seized and removed immediately without notice by the enforcement agency with jurisdiction. Under this program, the owner of the vessel is liable to the enforcement agency for all costs arising out of the seizure and removal of the vessel.

Funding Summary

Oregon law also authorizes the Oregon State Marine Board to establish and maintain a Salvaged Vessel sub-account under Oregon Revised Statutes (OAR) 830.948. Funds from this account, which are collected from certificate and registration fees under OAR 830.790 and OAR 830.850, will be used to reimburse the public enforcement agencies for expenses related to the removal of abandoned or derelict vessels. Under OAR 830.948, the Oregon State Marine Board must set aside $150,000 each biennium in order to provide grants to reimburse up to 90% of the costs associated with investigating, salvaging, towing, removing, storing or disposing of abandoned or derelict vessels.

POC Summary

Oregon’s ADV Program is administered by the Oregon State Marine Board, which then delegates authority for the removal and/or disposal of the vessel in question to the relevant enforcement agency under OAR 830.908 to OAR 830.948. The Oregon State Marine Board can be contacted by phone at 503-856-2914 or by email at marine.board@boat.oregon.gov.

Last updated Tue, 03/19/2024 - 05:21 pm EDT