DZ

New shoreline access bill

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I think current law states “mean high water line” which has been hard to define.  This additional law would incorporate the most recent high tide mark.  If you’re within 10 feet of it while fishing you’re legal.  I think the bill is to make it simpler for law enforcement personnel.

Edited by DZ
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If that really is the only change in language, sounds good to me.

 

Quick question:  "occurs on a sandy or rocky shore"

 

Is that wording in the current law, and if so,

Does anyone know if a seawall made from large boulders that abuts a residence is considered a "rocky shore"

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26 mins ago, lagom9 said:

If that really is the only change in language, sounds good to me.

 

Quick question:  "occurs on a sandy or rocky shore"

 

Is that wording in the current law, and if so,

Does anyone know if a seawall made from large boulders that abuts a residence is considered a "rocky shore"

I’m trying to get clarification of that now.  Representative Cortvriend contacted me for support and some testimony about my past experiences.  I’ll be speaking with her soon about that question.

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Be nice if it passes but it might be an unconstitutional taking if the property owners are not somehow compensated.

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2 hours ago, lagom9 said:

If that really is the only change in language, sounds good to me.

 

Quick question:  "occurs on a sandy or rocky shore"

 

Is that wording in the current law, and if so,

Does anyone know if a seawall made from large boulders that abuts a residence is considered a "rocky shore"

Well, it would be rocky and it certainly would be within ten feet of the high tide line.

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50 mins ago, MakoMike said:

Well, it would be rocky and it certainly would be within ten feet of the high tide line.

Just spoke with Rep Cortvriend and asked about impact of law in those areas.  I specifically asked about Quonny  breachway and Taylor Swifts shorefront.  First question she asked me was if the breachway and sea wall at Swifts were publicly financed.  Pretty sure the breachway was , not sure about Swift property.  Anyway there are attorneys (Filippi being one) who have cosponsored the bill who are working that aspect.

Edited by DZ
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I would think being 10" behind the most recent high tide instead of at the mean high tide would be beneficial to all fisherman.

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Superficially this seems like it would bring more clarity to where the line is drawn. I dont think it will prevent waterfront owners from questioning where the high tide mark is but it will at least give law enforcement a clearer sense of where the boundary is. 

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2 hours ago, bdowning said:

Superficially this seems like it would bring more clarity to where the line is drawn. I dont think it will prevent waterfront owners from questioning where the high tide mark is but it will at least give law enforcement a clearer sense of where the boundary is. 

Exactly- this law if passed would allow law enforcement to have more discretion.  In that case last year with the guy gathering seaweed he would have been within the new law and not arrested.  Obviously the “mean high water mark” although hard to determine, would also still be law.  
In my conversation with Rep Cortvriend I told her my advice to any person walking the shoreline and having a property owner asking them to leave was to immediately make a preemptive call to law enforcement saying you are being harassed for fishing on public property.  Then law enforcement is responding to you... not the land owner.  She agreed.

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Ok this bill will eventually be heard in the judiciary committee.  If any of you would like to state any experiences you’ve had with being asked to stop fishing or being told to get off public access shoreline by adjacent property owners or law enforcement you can send them to the committee clerk.

Send testimony to the clerk of the judiciary committee with a reference to the bill number H7755. 
Roberta DiMezza
 
I hope to testify as over the 40 years I’ve been surfcasting I’ve been asked to leave various places a half dozen times or so.
For example I’ve been surf fishing for many years and have been harassed by adjacent property owners a handful of times.  Each time I was in the water with my chest waders on.  Once I was told to leave by a police officer at Taggerts Ferry in Middletown even though I was in the water up to my waist.  Even though I was in the right in that case the proposed change of “10 feet of the most recent high tide line” definitely would have allowed law enforcement to permit me to continue to fish.
 
Thanks for any assistance.

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Kudos Dennis ... this is very important, and it's not even the focal point for the battle to ensure access. Not covered (as far as I can interpret) are denying access to Public Access Ways ... case in point is a small beach in Warwick near Old Buttonwoods. For years my Grandfather had a "shack" on this dirt road and we would vacation here and walk down to the beach via a path between 2 houses ... of course these shacks were bought up and modern waterview house were built over the past 25 years (my Dad bought and built one of these ...) ... but there was always access. Just this week my Dad was recounting his last visit to the area a couple of years ago, a]nd being denied access to the beach by the "new" house owner. Travesty. 

 

I wish I had a 1st hand experience to add to the Judicial Hearings ... unfortunately for this action I have never been denied access. But keep up the good fight!

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Just got a call from Rep Cortvriend who mentioned they are getting bill support from RISAA.  Bill proponents are meeting with Grover Fugate of CRMC next week to discuss specific areas of concern like Quonny and others. Attorneys are working on the rocky shore/man made structure aspect of the bill.  Providence Journal should be running an article about the Bill soon.

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1 min ago, DZ said:

Just got a call from Rep Cortvriend who mentioned they are getting bill support from RISAA.  Bill proponents are meeting with Grover Fugate of CRMC next week to discuss specific areas of concern like Quonny and others. Attorneys are working on the rocky shore/man made structure aspect of the bill.  Providence Journal should be running an article about the Bill soon.

Thanks for the updates Dennis, pleas continue to keep us up to date.

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