On October 24, 2014, the Patch.com site for Westhampton-Hampton Bays published this letter by SDBF President Marjorie Kuhn. Read Marjorie’s letter below, titled “Village of Quogue Must Address Declining Quality of Oceanfront Beach.”
The news media has just reported that despite $10B which was allocated by Congress and the President to provide financial relief to owners of properties in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut which were decimated by Hurricane Sandy now two years ago—more than 90% of the New York City applicants have not yet received assistance. And it is unclear when this assistance if any of it, will actually be provided to them. Many have suffered through the convoluted process of filing documented applications and attending meetings with no assistance in clear sight (which they had been led to believe by government, would be forthcoming).
This becomes an excellent “case study” for why the Village of Quogue, needs to pro-actively address the crisis head on: The serious declining quality of its 2.7 miles of oceanfront beach. Not only must we address concerns about jeopardizing what has been a magnificent source of leisure, recreation, and aesthetic appeal—but the consequences of losing our protective barrier which may result in devastation for many oceanfront, bayfront, and mainland property owners. During Hurricane Sandy, Quogue experienced firsthand how such a weather catastrophe scenario could disenfranchise our municipal services and lower property values.
This past summer, through a series of forums sponsored by: the Save the Dunes and Beaches Foundation, the Concerned Citizens of Quogue, and The Quogue Association, the takeaways included:
—-Discussion and public meetings about the condition of Quogue’s beach has been underway for more than ten years.
—-Scientific evaluation demonstrates a denial of some 60,000 cubic yards of sand each year, which Quogue’s beach has continuously lost for a number of decades. Through all of the informational sessions, no one has disputed the scientific evidence which was presented.
—-The Save The Dunes and Beaches Foundation together with the Village of Quogue is seeking approval from the NYS Department of Environment Conservation on an application, for beach nourishment.
—-The proposed project for Quogue will be similar to recently completed beach nourishment projects by our eastern neighbors in Sagaponack and Bridgehampton.
—-With respect to the eastern coastline of the United States, there is no national policy, and nothing appears to be on the horizon. This is the reason why so many municipalities have independently taken action.
—There are five different financing options which have been developed by The Save the Dunes and Beaches Foundation to handle this investment which is estimated at $10M-$13M.
As Quogue residents, we need to take responsibility for our own domain. Let’s not be waiting in hope in vain for government assistance that takes years to access, is uncertain, and unfulfilling. We only know what we can do locally ourselves.
Together, let’s take responsibility to safeguard our wonderful community, Quogue, by beach restoration.
MARJORIE KUHN, PRESIDENT, SAVE THE DUNES AND BEACHES FOUNDATION,WWW.QUOGUEBEACHES.ORG (A THIRTY YEAR QUOGUE RESIDENT)