SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Local News

March 31, 2008

A beloved resort erodes Gradually, Salisbury Beach washes away

(Continued)

Salisbury Town Manager Neil Harrington said in years past DCR hasn't practiced preventative care of the beach but has responded to Salisbury's needs in reaction to crises. But, he added, he's seen a chance recently, with the coming of DCR's new Commissioner Richard Sullivan Jr., appointed by Patrick last year to take over the reins of the agency.

It was Sullivan who ordered the 20,000 cubic yards of sand be trucked onto the southern portion of Salisbury Beach to shore up homes in danger of collapsing because of the erosion the storm caused. Harrington said his dealings with Sullivan since then have been productive.

"Commissioner Sullivan has come down here to look at our issues, and he understands them," Harrington said in a recent interview. "He was a mayor himself (of Westfield) and really understands the local point of view."

For more information on erosion along the Massachusetts coastline, visit the following link on the state's Office of Coastal Zone Management Web site: www.mass.gov/czm/hazards/shoreline_change/shorelinechangeproject.htm.

Statistics on Salisbury Beach

r The state accepted the certificate of title for Salisbury Beach on June 10, 1933

r It includes 167.2 acres along 3.49 miles of beach

r The state paid Salisbury $233,767 in payment in lieu of taxes for the land last year and $208,054 the prior year.

r Along the oceanfront, there are 250 parcels of private land (this does not include any lots at the beach that do not directly front the ocean).

r Those 250 parcels are valued at $202 million and represent about 13 percent of Salisbury's property tax revenue.

r In comparison, the assessed value of all of Salisbury's commercial property comes to about 15 percent of property tax revenue.

SOURCE: Salisbury Assessor's Office

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