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Deteriorating Southland Beaches and the Victims of the Storm

January 30, 1988

I can sympathize with ocean-front property owners but I don't feel that we should subsidize their desire to live there or operate businesses there. By building there, they are the problem.

Ninety percent of our shorelines are eroding. Shoreline erosion in itself is no problem. The problem occurs when people build too near to the coast or when they attempt to thwart the ocean's work.

Construction of seawalls actually damages the beach more quickly than if nothing were done. Waves are reflected back from the walls and the currents in the surf zone are intensified. The beach disappears and soon large waves that would normally break on sand bars are crashing against the seawalls, destroying them and resulting in the need for even larger seawalls.

These people should not receive low-interest disaster loans. Through eminent domain the property should be purchased and structures torn down to provide more beaches for the public to use.

Less than half of California's 1,000 miles of coastline is available for public use and much of that 500 miles is inaccessible.

The population of California is increasing at a fast pace. People need nearby recreational facilities to reduce the stress and strain of everyday living.

The oceans and beaches of the world belong to the people and should not be restricted to the use of a select few.

JEROME A. BELL

Glendora

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