Present and future berth owners, you can rest a little easier. The Tuscany Regional Administrative Court’s final ruling, which will make as they say “jurisprudence,” means that you will probably be shielded from future demands for money for your berth by the port from which you purchased the berth. Rumors have been swirling around the docks for years, worrying boaters. Because, you may not have known better, a real battle has been going on for years pitting Italian marinas against the state.
THE REASON FOR THE DISPUTE
These are the state fees owed to the state, the owner of the coasts, by the companies (the ports) that “rent” the space, which they in turn resell in the form of berths. The state, tearing up agreements already made with port facilities, in 2007 demanded new fees up to three times higher than those agreed upon.
THE RULING FAVORABLE TO BOATERS
Hence a long legal battle waged by marinas. In early March, the Regional Administrative Court of Tuscany ruled in favor of the appeals filed by Marina Cala de’ Medici against the Municipality of Rosignano, which had demanded huge increases in the state fee. This ruling set a legal precedent that marks a point in favor of the ports and a defeat for the state.
WHAT WILL HAPPEN.
This is no small matter, because this litigation affects those who have already purchased a berth or those who plan to purchase one. Indeed, who would the port companies go to, at least in part, to claim the costs of increased state fees? To their clients, of course. That’s why the recent ruling by the Tuscany Regional Administrative Court (TAR) forcing the municipality of Rosignano Marittimo, where the Marina di Cala de’ Medici, which filed the petition, is based, to revise the unilaterally raised state fee, nullifying agreements made earlier, is also a victory for boaters. The leader of this first victory is Matteo Ratti, CEO of Marina Cala de’ Medici, who commented on the result this way, “The order of the Tuscany Regional Administrative Court was the first to incorporate the Constitutional Court’s direction, and I hope it will generate a ruling that will become case law.”