By Laura Leslie
RALEIGH, N.C. — State House lawmakers voted 80-33 Wednesday to ease restrictions on four terminal groin projects at the coast.
The House version of Senate Bill 151 is a far cry from from the original Senate version, which would allow terminal groin construction in every inlet in the state, as well as removing parts of current law intended to protect property owners and taxpayers.
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S 151 largely upends 2011 compromise legislation sponsored by Sens. Brown and Rabon. S 151 removes the cap on the number of terminal groins which can be built and drops provisions designed to ensure that local communities do not incur debt without a vote of the people. S 151 also removes fiscal protections intended to ensure that neighboring properties will be compensated for any ensuing damage.
“North Carolinians enjoy natural beaches that are the envy of the East Coast. This is because our state leaders have historically adopted a conservative management policy that bans hardened structures—seawalls, jetties and groins of any kind—from our ocean beaches,” said Molly Diggins, state director of the NC Sierra Club.
“Today, the Senate gutted compromise legislation passed just two years ago in order to make it easier to construct hardened structures,” added Diggins. “Today’s vote is bad for beaches, bad for taxpayers, and bad for North Carolinians who love their state’s natural beaches."
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The Associated Press - RALEIGH — The North Carolina Senate passed two major environmental rollbacks Wednesday ahead of a deadline over objections from Democratic lawmakers.
The bills would repeal rules for managing pollutants in Jordan Lake and a host of restrictions on new jetties along the coast that critics say can shift damage to neighboring properties. Bills that don't require tax changes or spending and fail to clear at least one chamber by Thursday night are essentially dead through the end of the session in 2014.
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