ASBPA Joins U.S. Supreme Court Case on Beaches
FORT MYERS - The executive committee of the American Shore & Beach Preservation Association (ASBPA) voted unanimously for ASBPA to join the joint amicus brief being filed by the Florida Shore & Beach Preservation Association, the Florida Association of Counties and the Florida League of Cities in the U.S. Supreme Court case entitled "Stop the Beach Renourishment. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection et al.," to be heard by the high court later this year.
The court will decide whether state legislation to renourish eroded beaches constitutes regulatory taking or violates the Fifth Amendment. In concert with our local government and association members in Florida, the ASBPA's financial support will also be used to share costs with the lawsuit's respondents for the professional services of Thomas Merrill, a respected property-rights scholar. The amicus brief is being prepared by Lewis Stroud & Deutsch.
ASBPA president Harry Simmons stated, "While the case before the court is technically a Florida matter, the results of the case could have implications for coastal communities nationwide. ASBPA is dedicated to the efforts of our members in Florida and elsewhere who are working hard to maintain, protect and enhance the coasts of America. We believe the state of Florida is correct in its approach to restoring beaches and hope the high court agrees."
The case centers on an appeal of a Florida Supreme Court decision by a Walton County group formed in 2004 to challenge a local beach restoration plan. Owners objected that the renourished beach seaward of a state-set erosion control line and behind their homes would become public land, as is mandated by state law.
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