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Restricting shoreline access is wrong, shameful


I’m a Connecticut resident who has been spending time on the south shore since I was 9 years old, and I just turned 60.

It is a shame to see what has happened to the shore in that time. Many accesses have just disappeared. I have seen bushes planted, fences built and property owners putting up illegal signs stating the beach is private. The law states there must be an ox cart-width passage along the shoreline as long as there is access to the shoreline. This law goes back to the Roman era.

Now I will relate this to Quonochontaug Beach, an association of which I’m a member and which owns a large portion of land on that barrier beach. At the east end of the beach is the breachway, with a large portion of state land that has a deeded right of way. This gives access to the shoreline. The rest is owned by other associations with the word conservation in their name or a created fire district. Beware of these types of associations, because the only thing they want to conserve is their own access to a gated community. One of these associations even helped promote a state law that stops access to land that is set aside for conservation (its own use). This was to try and stop access to lands that may border it. An example is the state-owned land.

Another way they try to keep access closed is to tell the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service they will sue it if it doesn’t heavily enforce the Endangered Species Act, and if it does, then they will donate large sums of money to do their bidding. Theses associations even have the wildlife refuge service putting up ropes in the fall to show where your access is. Those are man hours that our tax dollar is supporting. We maintain our own private land and I would think these people with more money than any one of us could do the same. Why would they want to do that when they can use your money?

Enough is enough, time to get loud and stop the greed.

Richard Taylor

Willimantic, Conn.



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