The Blizzard of 2013 dealt a blow to Duxbury Beach so now beach trustees want to increase the town’s lease by 50%.
The President of the Duxbury Beach Reservation, Margaret Kearney, called blizzard damage “shockingly severe” when she attended a recent Selectmen’s meeting.
Roads along the beach are impassable, vehicle crossovers that give access to the front of the beach need to be rebuilt, and all fencing must be replaced.
Kearney said they’re forced to turn to the town for money because it’s unlikely they’ll get federal assistance, “FEMA, unfortunately, FEMA denied us funding in 2007. We’re not hopeful, we’ll certainly look for it but we’re not hopeful with all the funds that are going out for Hurricane Sandy.”
Every year, the Town of Duxbury leases the beach and this year, trustees of the reservation are suggesting an increase from $400,000 to $600,000 dollars.
“We were not going to ask for more money in the lease this year, we were going to ask for it next year. We did not plan on this blizzard. We now have extensive repairs that we need to make as soon as possible,” said Kearney
Duxbury’s Finance Director advised Selectmen to not grant the increase. They said they’d consider it but regardless, the lease is annually voted on during town meeting which is being held this year on March 9th.
Kearney estimates that repairs will cost the reservation between $500,000-$1,000,000. She says one of their priorities is a sacrificial dune which needs to raised to 16-feet.
“It’s really important that we make these repairs and actually the sacrificial dune is what saved our beach, even this time, from being breached. We had lots of wash overs,” said Kearney