Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

OldTownYakBoi
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Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by OldTownYakBoi »

I drove down Sportsman yesterday only to see concrete barriers blocking the public launch in the middle of the road… Anyone know what’s going on there? We already lost one launch within the last 2 years that was at the end of 8 mile… I fear this launch is next. I’m frustrated to say the least…

So I ask, anyone know what’s going on?
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impulse
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by impulse »

Interesting... Galveston county tax maps say that Galveston City owns those 2 sliver plots.
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I'm not claiming that's the case, but it wouldn't be the first time a homeowner has taken matters into their own hands and blocked what they considered a public nuisance... Some enterprising young Realtor may want to inquire...
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Dandydon
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by Dandydon »

I agree with Impulse, Kyle. Loss of that launch would be catastrophic. Since you're a top Galveston real estate agent and resident, nobody is better situated than you to find out what's up.

If you need any legal or Kung Fu help, I'm here to assist. I can be there in an hour. Let's get to the bottom of this before we lose one of our best launches on West Bay.

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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by shoffer »

I guess that explains why I have seen no Yakkers out there last Sunday when I buzzed by there in my boat. This is BS.
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by OldTownYakBoi »

I have confirmed with another home owner that has a house on Sportsman that the city is shutting it down. Supposedly the guy who owns a house right next to the ramp has been complaining for some time to the city that he keeps having gasoline stolen from his boat.

Talk about utter bullshit. The guy knew what he was getting into when he bought that house, and If he didn’t he should’ve hired a better agent.

Very frustrating to lose another access point to the bay, we are just getting stripped of everything launch by launch. Disheartening
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by impulse »

Do they have the authority to do that without soliciting input from the public?

If so, who do we need to vote out next election?

I don't think this is anywhere near over, nor a done deal. It is, after all, public property with a long history of public access, predating those homes- converted now to private use only.

If the guy's having theft problems, the plethora of security cameras available today would be a much better solution, but I suspect that's not his issue.
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by deptrai »

Those barriers wouldn't stop me from launching my kaka there. Park across the street.
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impulse
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by impulse »

deptrai wrote: Fri Sep 02, 2022 12:01 pm Those barriers wouldn't stop me from launching my kaka there. Park across the street.
Better yet, park in front of his house. It is a public street...

Wave real nice as you walk by.
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by Dandydon »

Thanks to Yak Boi (Kyle) for finding out why our public launch was summarily shut down. So it seems a Sportsman Rd. resident lied about those "gasoline thefts" and persuaded the City of Galveston to shut down that launch.

As a lawyer I would say that disgruntled homeowner has committed fraud and should be investigated & prosecuted. Problem is it's hard to make our case against somebody anonymous.

Shoffer and I would be happy to take legal action on this matter if Kyle or anybody else could discover who the complaining homeowner is. That is your mission: find out who filed the complaint with the city.
If this fraud stands, I'm afraid it gets publicity and becomes a tactic to shut down what few launch sites we've got left.

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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by impulse »

I don't know that doxing the homeowner is the solution as much as filing a complaint with the city for shutting down a PUBLIC resource for the benefit of the few. That seems awful close to conversion to a non-lawyer like myself.

Let's face it, the homeowner was just doing what NIMBY's do. There's virtually no way to prove the negative so fraud would be pretty much impossible to prosecute (or litigate). It's up to our elected officials manage PUBLIC assets like land for the benefit of the public. A more productive exercise would be to find out who authorized it, and what authority and mechanism they used to decide and implement the blockage. And was there any opportunity for public input before the decision and the action were taken?

Imagine buying a home in an area because there's a launch site so close by, only to find out that the amenity you were counting on is taken away by the city with no opportunity for public input.

Oh, and I'd still be happy to toss the kayak on top the van and join a grass roots meet-up to legally park a few dozen cars on the public road in front of the houses and legally launch at the now blocked off access point. I don't see any no trespassing signs, just blocking vehicular traffic. Not much different than the bollards on the beach. But if we do, let's be polite and wave at the homeowners. That'll get their attention and possibly bring the issue to a head.
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by Dandydon »

Impulse, reread my post. I never recommended "doxing" the complaining homeowner.

I requested help in discovering his identity because that's the first step in legal action with or against the City of Galveston.

Unfortunately I fear the city's shutdown action will stand until we can approach the city to make our case. And our case is that some local resident LIED to Galveston in order to shut down a long-existing public boat ramp that he personally hated.

Any questions?

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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by impulse »

The premise of your argument is that the guy lied. That's virtually impossible to prove, even if he did.

The premise of my argument is that even if there was fuel theft, the city was still wrong to block access to a public area to the detriment of the majority, in favor of the few. That argument doesn't require knowing who complained. Just which public official took the action, under what authority, using what mechanism? Did they follow the proscribed steps (like public input) to shut off access to the public's property?

My concern is that the city may have taken the action to reduce litter. That seems to be the most popular reason for the cities, state and counties to shut down public access.
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by Dandydon »

You are trying to help, Impulse, but you know just enough law to be totally unhelpful. Quit trying to be an attorney and putting words in my mouth.

We lawyers want to know the identity of the complainer before we take our case to the City of Galveston. That's in case the city takes the position that his identity is protected. If they do that, then we lose all negotiating power and the city can tell us to go pound sand because it's all confidential and the matter is closed.
I don't want to alienate helpful locals like you and Kyle because we Houston lawyers welcome the assistance of you Galveston residents in arguing our case. From the city's perspective you locals might have more standing to complain about this shutdown than lawyers from out of town.
So I recommend that you & Kyle continue to investigate who filed the complaint, then we lawyers will approach the city as your legal counsel to argue our case. That way we all might win.

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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by impulse »

I'm not sure that accusing a guy of being a liar and a fraud on a public forum is a good start. Especially if you don't know who he is yet.

Your intent may not be to dox the guy. But I can easily see a helpful poster innocently telling us who the guy is. That's doxing, and I hoped to nip it before it happened.

Personally, I don't care who complained. He didn't authorize, or put up the barriers. My beef is with the elected officials. Did they follow the legal process or not?
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by Dandydon »

You are a non-lawyer practicing law and thereby breaking the law.

You should pipe down and go away before you ruin our chances of negotiating with the city.

Any more legal advice you want to give this board?

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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by Ron Mc »

What about the argument that the City has taken away a resource from the public and needs to provide an equivalent alternate venue?

This was essentially the argument GRTU used to gain Stakeholder status in GBRA for the rainbow trout fishery - the coldwater tailrace took away a warmwater fishery, and the coldwater fishery that replaced it needs equal protection.

Might even be able to petition CCA for a grant to fight this one.
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by Dandydon »

Good suggestion, Ron! I'll discuss it with my co-counsel Shoffer. All facts & suggestions are welcomed.

The more ammo we've got against the City of Galveston, the better. We do have two things in our favor:
(1) About 20 years ago I beat the City of Galveston in a case I did for Mr. Galveston himself, George Mitchell. I won money damages for him and forced the city to apologize for misappropriation of the W. Galveston beachfront he owned.
(2) As always, Shoffer & I gladly perform free legal work for certain TKF members & kayakers in general because it's a worthy cause. My normal rate is $975/hour, a real bargain, trust me. Shoffer charges at least $700/hour. He's the best trial lawyer I know.
As we develop the facts we'll consult a few members for input. But for now, I recommend we start communicating & stategizing in private. This TKF thread is discoverable by our opponents if it comes down to a lawsuit.
Onward through the sand! Image Image

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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by Dandydon »

P. S. You can contact me at (832) 803-8991 or via email at donwayne69@gmail.com.
I'm semi-retired & fully available after my prostate surgery next Wed. Image
Call Shoffer and hope for the best!

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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by saltykat »

That really sucks losing another launch in Gtown. Can we start an online petition and have all the kayakers in the Houston Galveston area sign it. I just signed a contract for a house in Jamaica beach for this winter and am going to call the realtor today and lt them know i'm not happy about it. :horse:
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by shoffer »

As much as I'd like to help you guys on this, I am absolutely swamped with work right now, so I won't be able to help.
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by Dandydon »

For your information, a resourceful TKF member found out who owns the two property tracts on each side of the Sportsman Rd. launch site. He is working with me to gather facts and evidence regarding this public ramp closure.

I will be following up with each adjacent owner, then will try to make our case with the City of Galveston.

Anybody else with information or suggestions is urged to contact me. Thanks for your help.

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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by chicken... »

Fellow Yakers,

Yes, this is a serious issue as this could and most likely lead to other public access being closed. As saltykat mentioned, he leased a house in Galveston where among other things he will be spending time and MONEY while he is there. All of us spend money in Galveston in one way or another when we make our trips to the island and this fact needs to be any part of an argument that may be made to re-open the launch.

As far as gas theft, I call BS on that as most of us here are decent citizens who even bring a trash bag to the launches, beaches, bays, rivers, lakes and wherever else we may launch our yaks to "police" the area.

Let's keep our cool here and do whatever can be done legally to re-open the ramp AND bay for all of us.

Happy Fishin'
chicken... :wink:
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by OldTownYakBoi »

I call bs as well about the gas theft.

I think we can all agree we need to protect our launches, I hope this can all be resolved. Sportsman road is a magical place that shouldn’t be restricted to those that own 1 of the 20 houses on the road. Whatever needs to be done count me in!
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by OldTownYakBoi »

Ron Mc wrote: Sun Sep 04, 2022 3:22 pm What about the argument that the City has taken away a resource from the public and needs to provide an equivalent alternate venue?

This was essentially the argument GRTU used to gain Stakeholder status in GBRA for the rainbow trout fishery - the coldwater tailrace took away a warmwater fishery, and the coldwater fishery that replaced it needs equal protection.

Might even be able to petition CCA for a grant to fight this one.

The city has already take one amazong launch on Sportsman Road, this is the second. Now there is only 1 TINY launch left. We’ve got to protect our rights to enjoy the public resource
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Re: Sportsman Road Launch blocked!? What’s the deal

Post by saltykat »

Is there a phone number I can call to speak to someone about this in Galveston. I've tried to find a number to call but had no luck
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