Water-Related News

New beach re-nourishment in Pinellas may hinge on signed easements

REDINGTON SHORES – They’re drawing a “line in the sand.”

Some property owners in Pinellas County don’t like a new rule when it comes to beach re-nourishment.

They’re worried they are giving up part of their property, forever.

Storms, tides, and currents are all the enemy to pristine, wide-open beaches. So every few years, the Army Corps of Engineers pumps in new sand, called re-nourishment.

With some heated debate in Redington Shores, a Pinellas County Coastal Management expert explained, if tax dollars are spent to improve beaches, then the public is entitled to use the area while the Corps is requiring signed easements.

“People are wondering why they have to give easements now when they haven’t in the past. But the Corps' policy is that wherever they are going to place sand, they need have perpetual public access easements,” said Dr. John Bishop.

That’s fine with many homeowners. “We have some residents, I know of some neighbors of mine, they say, hey, if you’re willing to put sand on my beach for free, have at it,” said St. Pete Beach Mayor, Mayor Al Johnson.