To get a captains license you need to own property and/or be a permanent resident. You have to pass a 20 question written exam. Then you take a practical exam where you demonstrate your ability to drive a boat. To register a boat you take it to the BPA and they inspect its seaworthiness and whether you have the proper safety equipment, including life vests for all passengers, navigation lights, flares, and a first aid kit. There are probably a few that I missed but you can find that out from the manual given out by BPA. In San Pedro their office is way to the south at the end of the road.