DNREC public hearing on Proposed Regulations Governing Beach Protection and the Use of Beaches set for Nov. 7 in Lewes
DOVER (Oct. 14, 2015) – DNREC’s Division of Watershed Stewardship’s Shoreline & Waterway Management Section will hold a public hearing next month seeking comment on proposed changes to Delaware’s Regulations Governing Beach Protection and the Use of Beaches. The public hearing will take place at 10 a.m. Saturday , Nov. 7 at the Lewes Fire Department, Station 2, 32198 Janice Road, Lewes, DE 19958.
The proposed regulations incorporate legislative changes to the Beach Protection Act; increase effectiveness of the state’s Coastal Construction Program, and improve DNREC’s protection of the beach and dune system. Notable proposed changes are:
- Formal approvals for construction activities on lots between the Mean High Waterline and the first public road are currently required. The Beach Preservation Act (Del. Code Title 7, Ch. 68) and proposed regulations define a “Regulated Area,” which would require formal approval for construction activities for the first three buildable lots landward of the Mean High Waterline. This will expand the number of lots required to get approval in some areas and reduce it in others.
- Due to recent amendments to the Beach Preservation Act (Del. Code Title 7, Ch. 68), proposed regulations direct DNREC to consider the effects of beach nourishment when existing houses located seaward of the Building Line are being reconstructed after being destroyed by an “Act of God or other accidental event.”
- Placement and approval of temporary structures are directly addressed in the proposed regulations. The placement of temporary structures related to an event lasting 72 hours or less will be exempt from getting approval.
- The four-step process for designing dwellings seaward of the Building Line to minimize encroachment onto beach and dunes, which is currently Department policy, is incorporated into the proposed regulations.
The public can now submit written comments to the Department regarding these proposed regulatory amendments. Comments should specifically address the proposed amendments to the Regulations Governing Beach Protection and the Use of Beaches. Written comment for the hearing record may be submitted to Lisa Vest, Hearing Officer, DNREC, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901. While comment may also be made either orally or in writing at the Nov. 7 public hearing, it is requested that anyone interested in presenting statements at the public hearing register in advance by contacting Jennifer Luoma, Shoreline & Waterway Management Section, Division of Watershed Stewardship, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901, or by calling 302-739-9921. The hearing record will remain open for written or email comments through 4:30 p.m., Nov. 22, 2015.
More information about the updating of beach regulations can be found on the DNREC website. Copies of the draft proposed updates to the Regulations Governing Beach Protection and the Use of Beaches may be obtained by contacting the Shoreline & Waterway Management Section, at 302-739-9921, or by emailing DNREC Environmental Scientist Jennifer Luoma. The proposed regulations can also be found inOctober’s Monthly Register of Regulations on the State of Delaware Website.