Maisel Torpedos Mill Basin Party Boat Plan

A boat filling with passengers ahead of a cruise around Sheepshead Bay during the Summer season.

The party boats won’t float in Mill Basin.

City Council Member Alan Maisel (Mill Basin, Canarsie, Flatlands, Bergen Beach, Floyd Bennett Field, Gerritsen Beach, Marine Park, Plum Beach) today threatened to do everything in his power to thwart the city’s plan to move party boats from Emmons Avenue in Sheepshead Bay to Flatbush Avenue in Mill Basin.

City Councilman Alan Maisel

“The city never bothered to consult with me about this. They never consulted with Community Board 18 [in Mill Basin], who is entitled to be consulted about this just like Community Board 15 [Sheepshead Bay] was consulted about this,” said Maisel. “We’re going to fight this and if necessary we’re going to go to court.”

The party boats have long been a source of anguish in Sheepshead Bay. The main quality-of-life issues involved the party boats arriving back on Emmons Avenue in the wee hours of the morning, whereupon often drunken party-goers disembark, exhibiting rowdy behavior including getting into fights and urinating on public property.

Between lobbying efforts of both City Council Member Chaim Deutsch (D-Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach, Midwood) and Assemblymember Steve Cymbrowitz (D-Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach), the city has tried several things to alleviate the quality-of-life problems including stagnating when the party boats go off to sea and come back to dock, and an increased police presence – all to no avail.

City Councilman Chaim Deutsch

Yesterday, Deutsch announced he has reached an agreement with the city to phase the party boats out of Sheepshead Bay within six months. On May 1, three of the party boats will be re-located to Mill Basin, near Nick’s Lobster House, 2777 Flatbush Avenue, across the inlet from residential Mill Island. In September, the rest of the boats will be moved to the Brooklyn Army Terminal on the Sunset Park/Bay Ridge border in an industrial area.

“I’m pleased to have worked with Mayor de Blasio to arrange a compromise to phase out the Sheepshead Bay party boats within the next six months. Sheepshead Bay is a friendly, welcoming community, and our priority has always been the safety of our residents and party boat-goers. Lack of crowd control, insufficient parking, and inadequate restrooms to sustain the influx of guests have been concerns for the Sheepshead Bay fishing village for years,” said Deutsch.

“I’m very satisfied that we were able establish an arrangement that allows the party boat owners to continue to operate their businesses, whilst ensuring that the safety and security of community residents and visitors is not compromised.”

But Maisel is outraged that neither he nor anybody in the Mill Basin district were consulted or brought in on these change of plans.

The [Mill Basin] elected officials were only told about this yesterday after it was announced and that’s not the way to do things,” said Maisel.

Maisel said there are several problems with the party boats coming to Mill Basin including the area already is over trafficked, there is very little parking, which would make them interfere with local businesses and there are many residential houses just a stone throw away across the inlet.

“We never even got a call from the mayor’s office on this. They should have come down and told us what their plans were. We’re not going to allow it,” said Maisel.