Tuesday, March 11, 2014
I am deeply disappointed by the Maine Supreme Judicial Court’s Feb. 4 ruling in favor of 29 beachfront owner plaintiffs instead of the town of Kennebunkport (“Maine court: Public has no right to use Kennebunkport beach,” Feb. 5). These are mostly summer homes. Driving down Goose Rocks Beach in the winter is like visiting a ghost town except for those few and far between.
So why is it that these 29 plaintiffs even got to proceed in a case like this when they are only here for such short stays in the summer? I know we all have rights as U.S. citizens, but it does not make sense to me when people who do not even live in Kennebunkport year round have this kind of power.
When it’s all said and done, it comes down to an issue of money. Money from 29 individuals bought out an entire town’s rights to a public beach. What now? Well, I hope that Maine’s highest court knows it has just opened up the door for future beach privatization cases.
What does this mean for Kennebunkport’s local pride? In a town where a local might as well be known as an endangered species, this is a tough loss.
All I can say now is shame on the 29 beachfront plaintiffs and the court for taking away beach access that has been known to this community for generations. It is going to be even harder for locals and others who enjoy public access to Goose Rocks Beach to accept these 29 plaintiffs into the Kennebunkport community.
So my advice to the 29 plaintiffs: Let your beachfront property remain public, there is no need to be greedy. And if not, I hope you have a good rock wall – money cannot prevent all of the consequences to climate change.