On the heels of Hurricane Ian, the Florida Legislature this year passed the Hurricane Restoration Reimbursement Grant Program. The program allocates $50 million to reimburse oceanfront property owners for the construction of seawalls in the name of coastal protection. Any beachfront parcel owner may apply for $150,000 with a 50/50 percent homeowner match to construct seawalls that protect private property.
It is hard to imagine a more wrongheaded and maladaptive coastal management policy. The worst way to manage the coast is one parcel at a time. The only way to make it worse is to drive that piecemeal seawall construction with public funding.
Op-Ed by Rob Young and Katie Peek
Read the full article in the Tampa Bay Times from May 30: TampaBayTimes