We Oppose Dredging

In November 2011, the Village of Quogue (assisted by First Coastal Corporation) applied for a permit to dredge 1.1 million cubic yards of sand one mile offshore from Quogue and place it along Quogue’s 2.7 miles of beach at an estimated cost of $15 million. This is the largest expenditure of any kind ever considered by the Village government. It could result in the largest increase in real estate taxes in the Village’s history. Up to seven feet of natural sand would be excavated from a 100 acre site situated less than a mile offshore in the area between the Quogue Beach Club and the Surf Club. We strenuously oppose this project because it takes a costly and currently unnecessary approach to address the preservation of Quogue’s beach. Key considerations include:

  • Only a small portion of the Quogue shoreline would currently benefit from a beach widening project such as the one proposed. The oceanfront property owners along this stretch of shoreline would reap all of the financial return from the proposed project. We do not believe that all the citizens in Quogue should be required to finance storm damage reduction for a small number of oceanfront property owners.
  • Any suggestion that the project will significantly reduce the likelihood of island over wash and breaching, is highly speculative. Any suggestion that the project will reduce the risk of storm surge flooding behind the barrier island and in the Village is not supported by science.
  • Many houses currently fronted by narrow beaches in Quogue were built far too close to the ocean, even when there was plenty of room to build further back on the lot. These property owners need to assume personal responsibility for their actions and investment decisions. Many homes in Quogue are perfect candidates for relocation, often on the same lot. This is not a crazy idea. It happens regularly in places like Nantucket.
  • Beach nourishment projects are temporary and any storm reduction benefits are temporary. The entire dry portion of the project could be removed in one storm as happened recently in Folly Beach, SC. We encourage the Village of Quogue to engage all citizens in a discussion of long-term solutions to coastal storm hazards, sea level rise, and erosion. This discussion needs to move beyond the proposal of a one-off sand fill that will benefit only a small number of our citizens.

To read an unbiased, qualified evaluation of the proposed beach nourishment project for Quogue, please click here.

3 thoughts on “We Oppose Dredging”

  1. Concerned Citizens of Quogue i thank you for being so proactive in STOPPING the dredging project that seems to be from reading your detailed information and the facts of the Project. I oppose such a unnatural solution to a natural occurring process. I too agree as the DEC suggests that the few properties that are or will be affected be moved further from our shoreline. You have researched and presented an overwhelming presentation of factual that concluders tyne dredging should NOT happen.

  2. For over 75 years the Quogue beachfront has been starved for sand due to the effects of the jetties at the Shinnecock inlet. The natural flow of sand along the coast is from east to west. As a result of the Shinnecock Inlet not being allowed to close as it naturally would the sand is slowly accumulating on the east side of the inlet and then being drawn back out to sea. The Quogue beach is not receding, it is simply disappearing. And when it is finally gone, which will be A LOT sooner than any of you believe, the waves will be breaking over the Quogue golf course. There are really only 2 ways to save the barrier beach: 1) remove the Shinnecock jetties, let the inlet close naturally and say goodbye to the marginal commercial fishing fleet and handful of businesses that are located there or 2) beach nourishment (dredging). As it stands now, your tax dollars are already being used to maintain a very expensive status quo for dredging the Shinnecock Inlet and maintaining the jetties, all to benefit a mere handful of people. But since large numbers of recreational boaters and a small number of commercial fishing operators seem to have the clout, closing the inlet seems to be off the table.

    The real issue here is taxes. Quogue taxes are already insane and they support an absurdly bloated and overpaid ‘village’ workforce. What other ‘village’ has its own ‘Court of Justice’? Why does this village need to have such an enormous police department, all making 6 figure incomes, who seem to spend most of their time following 6 year olds that are riding their bikes? Quogue’s elementary school teachers are legendary for their amazing pay packages. But “Concerned Citizens of Quogue” is absolutely unconcerned about any of this. Like a one note trumpet you foolishly oppose spending a dime on preserving the one major feature at the core of Quogue’s identity: the beach.

    So let me propose a 3-point Action Plan for CCOQ: 1) Change your stance on beach nourishment from opposition to support 2) Make beach nourishment tax neutral by demanding commensurate cuts in redundant, over budgeted village services, headcount and compensation. 3) Spearhead a broad-based activist effort to once and for all remove the Shinnecock jetties and allow the inlet to close and heal itself naturally.

    Also-for the record, I am NOT a beach resident and I grew up in Quogue.

  3. Today Hurricane Florence is going to impact low-lying areas of North and South Carolina. This is the biggest storm since Hurricane Hugo, a category 4, came ashore 29 years ago and bashed Charleston, SC.

    And today, on MSNBC, we saw the mayor of Wrightsville Beach, NC lamenting the fact that the town had just this year spent $11 million on a beach nourishment project.

    Mother Nature is relentless.

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