Beach renourishing projects to be scaled down

Reported by Gavin Johnson - bio|email
Posted by Debra Worley - email

PLEASURE ISLAND, NC (WECT) - Kure and Carolina Beach leaders are planning renourishment efforts for early next year, but because of lack of federal funding, neither community will receive as much money as they first thought.

"The Southern end is where we need it the most," said Kure Beach Town Council Member Dean Lambeth.  "They've took the largest hit with some of the storms we've had."

Kure Beach town officials were hoping to receive around $3 million in a federal grant to start a beach renourishment project, but learned they will only get about half that amount.

"This is the engine that drives the economy for a lot of the state, and any time you see one of the state commercials talking about North Carolina, 70% of it will be the ocean and 30% of it the mountains and the piedmont," said Lambeth.

Kure Beach town officials said the beach erosion is so bad that people can fish from their balconies during high tide.

"We had a lot of under cutting of the dunes, and it's to the point where if you have too much undercut it's a safety concern," said Lambeth.

Erosion is not as bad in Carolina Beach, but town officials have also planned a renourishment project for 2010.  Their dollars were cut by more than half, so the plans will be scaled down.

"We have some parts of the Southern end that we were going to renourish, but that's being eliminated," said Carolina Beach Town Manager Tim Owens.

Leaders say they still plan on renourishing the beach, but the efforts will be scaled down from original plans.

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