To: The South Carolina State House, The South Carolina State Senate, and Governor Henry McMaster
Strand Feeding Dolphins Need Your Help. Save The Spit
Set South Carolina’s Permanent Beach Baseline: Don't let Kiawah Development Partners dictate our state’s beachfront management policies.
Captain Sams Spit is a 150-acre pristine land mass at the southern end of Kiawah Island. The "Spit" is home to one of a handful of dolphin pods on the planet known to "strand feed" (herd fish onto the beach). Thwarted by the South Carolina Supreme Court, Kiawah Partners is seeking legislation to allow construction to proceed this session.
Why is this important?
Captain Sams Spit is a 150-acre pristine sandy land mass at the southern end of Kiawah Island. The "Spit" is home to one of a handful of dolphin pods known to "strand feed" (chase fish up onto the beach to eat). Captain Sams is also relied upon by the piping plover, diamondback terrapin and other rare and threatened species for nesting and feeding.
For eight years, environmental groups have challenged numerous permits issued to Kiawah Development Partners (KDP) and its affiliates that would enable KDP's proposal to build a high-end residential development on the highly dynamic Spit. KDP is based out of North Carolina and backed by the same New York hedge fund that manages some of the New York State retirement fund, continues to push for permits to develop the property.
Thwarted by the South Carolina Supreme Court, they are now targeting the protections of our entire coastline. KDP have sought to amend a beachfront management bill (S.139) in our state legislature this session, and actually managed to convince Senator Campbell (R-Berkeley County) to defend its proposal (the "Kiawah Amendment"). The bill in question would set a permanent baseline along our entire coast using data from June 14, 2011, defending taxpayers, homeowners and natural resources from development too close to the ocean. This recommendation came from the Blue Ribbon Committee on Shoreline Management's Final Report (https://www.scdhec.gov/library/CR-010631.pdf), on which Sen. Campbell participated.
The "Kiawah Amendment" would delay setting that baseline, allowing road and other construction to occur even closer to the ocean on Captain Sams Spit.
Most recently, because of pressure from KDP, the senate committee dealing with bill S.139 has removed the language for a permanent baseline entirely.
Sign this petition to tell your state senator to:
1. support putting the permanent baseline language back in bill S.139, and
2. set the baseline using the June 14, 2011 date, per the Blue Ribbon Committee recommendation.
I support South Carolina Senate Bill 139 with the permanent baseline language restored and set for the Blue Ribbon Committee’s recommendation of June 14, 2011.
It is important to set a permanent baseline along our state’s beaches.
Our beachfront management laws should not be dictated by special interests like Kiawah Development Partners.
Web site: http://coastalconservationleague.org/ for more information