Under attack for the lack of action regarding the issue of private and customary beach use, the Walton County commissioners have found a clever way to begin enforcing this. Chapter 22 of the Beach Ordinance dealing with "Leave No Trace" has been amended to include the placing of signs, poles, chains or roping off of what home owners feel is their gulf front property.
So, without actually addressing the question of customary use, these items are considered part of the beach clean-up ordinance and are to be removed. If homeowners refuse to take down the signs, chains, etc., they will be cited with a code violation. The commissioners are talking about having officers placed on every half mile of beach, enforcing the ordinance. They will also deal with claims of excessive tents and beach vendors.
The ultimate goal is to provide clean beaches, free of obstructions that everyone can walk. The commissioners didn't mention, however, what sort of rights the homeowners who are paying taxes on that beach property have. Maybe the county could work out a "customary use rebate" for beachfront property owners, to help ease the sting.
In the meantime, if anyone is looking for a job, I understand Walton County is hiring code enforcement officers...
Tim Shepard, Broker/Owner
Destin Real Estate, LLC
Cell: (850) 259-4133
Toll Free: (866) 678-SOLD
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