Island Vibes Feb 2024 5 NEWS From Page 3 ducted inspections at the site of the property. During the inspection, OCRM officials confirmed that approximately 1,255 square feet of non-beach compatible fill and other materials – including clay, gravel/ rock, artificial turf, metal fencing, filter fabric, geogrid and timber – had been placed on an active beach’s critical area without authorization from DHEC. OCRM officials further found evidence of marine debris, resulting from tidal and wave interaction with the non-beach-compatible fill and materials. “We have heard reports from citizens of an erosion control device being found on the property,” said Emily Cedzo, director of conservation programs & policy with CCL. “We are not sure whether this was built in addition to the above referenced materials or if these materials have hardened to form some sort of erosion control device.” New erosion control devices are explicitly prohibited on state beaches as well as by the City of Isle of Palms. The primary reason for their prohibition, according to the South Carolina General Assembly, is because armoring devices perpetuate a false sense of security to beachfront property owners. In many instances, they increase vulnerability of beachfront property to damage from wind and waves while contributing to the deterioration of the beach, which is a public trust resource. “It’s important that property owners understand alternative means to protect their properties against erosion,” Cedzo said. “If one private resident builds a device at their own discretion to control erosion, others will often follow suit and doing so can also exacerbate erosion on adjacent properties.” Attempts to stave off erosion on IOP beaches have been ongoing since 2007. Efforts across the island have included sandbag placement, dredging, pumping, beach condition monitoring, shoal realignment and management, dune restoration, targeted sand scrapings and the moving and replacing of beach-compatible sand. From 2008-14, more than 100,000 cubic yards of sand were dumped along the eastern fill area of Seascape and Ocean Club. Since the summer of 2023, Breach Inlet has been dealing with extensive erosion, according to Traynum. The Army Corps of Engineers is expected to add approximately half a million cubic yards of sand to the south end area in the next couple of months. In 2013-14, during a routine OCRM inspection of sandbags at the east end of the island near the Ocean Club, OCRM found a timber wall behind the sandbags, according to former IOP Mayor Dick Cronin, who served from 2009-17. The matter was resolved by OCRM taking the wall down and fining the owner. “Any erosion control action you take on your own can impact public use of the beach or further contribute to erosion of the area,” Traynum added. “Rapidly eroding shorelines are a very difficult management issue that often forces homeowners and beach managers to face difficult choices with unpredictable outcomes.” Photos Provided. About the Cover Sunset lovers By Laura Fogarty ust before sunset on a brisk January evening, photographer Tonya McGue prepared to take the cover photo for our February issue. The community dock at the Isle of Palms Exchange Club provided the perfect location to capture the spectacular view and gave us a chance to chat with the sweet and lighthearted couple featured on our cover. Anna Raquel Robison met her husband Jonathon Clark at Erskine College where they both attended the school on athletic scholarships. Anna was born in Charleston and raised on the Isle of Palms with her younger siblings, while Jonny hails from slightly farther off—Aberdeen, Scotland. After coming to the United States to attend college and play soccer, Jonny fell in love with not only his future wife, but also her hometown. Deciding to stay in the United States, close to Anna’s family, was a decision that came naturally to both. Jonny admits the weather here is hard to beat, and the people and the pubs make it a place he’s content to call home. J