The Beach belongs to everyone

We want Long Island to be a place where this, and the next generation can surf, windsurf, sail, swim, sunbathe, fish, kayak or just soak in Long Island's Natural Beauty.

Long Island is losing its waterfront and wet lands to private homes at an alarming pace. Beach Access is disappearing right along with it. In addition, many NYS laws concerning Beach Access are archaic at best.

It is not LIBAG's intent to take away any existing rights of NYS Beach users. Only to add to them.

We are fortunate, to be working with the Long Island Regional State Parks Commission towards solutions that would allow all beach user groups equal access to all NYS Parks Beaches, with out excluding or taking away any access rights from any user groups.

The Long Island Beach Access Group is most commonly known for its four core programs;

1- The Beach Access program whose research and advocacy programs support the maintenance and expansion of access to those remote beach locations on Long Island for all users.

2- Also, our Beach Preservation program works to sponsor, participate and encourage those activities that ensure the healthy maintenance of our beaches and barrier islands, such as beach grass plantings.

3- Our Beach Clean-up program works to sponsor, participate and encourage continual beach clean-ups in conjunction with the America Littoral Society. This includes the adoption of Gilgo Beach.

4- But also, Long Island Beach Access Group is known for our Beach Actions program which seeks to encourage and reward proper behavior when enjoying the beaches. This includes following the official rules and regulations of each of the beaches and areas that provide access to those beaches, promoting the “Carry in, Carry out more” philosophy, and in a more informal fashion, instructing people on safe enjoyment of our natural resources.

Remember: it is not LIBAG's intent to take away any existing rights of NYS Beach users. Only to add to them.

LIBAG is honored to work with New York State Park officials, as we continue to connect the Parks to the People.

We look forward to our continued work with New York State officials in order to implement solutions that encourage more diverse use of NYS’s Beaches.

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Saturday, March 9, 2013

Heckscher beach clean up.

Damage to seawall

Why would ten people go to the beach on a day when
both the air and water temperature were in the high 30’s?

I’ll tell you why… Because it needed to be done.  Hurricane
changed the underwater landscape of
Long Island. It deposited all types of underwater hazards where there were none before.

This is why on Saturday March 2nd, members of LIBAG and the Long Island
Windsurfing Group
performed a search grid at three beaches located in
Heckscher State Park. With the assistance of David Auguste, the Park
Director, of
Heckscher State Park; we searched for, located, removed
where possible, or marked any underwater hazards to park users with buoys. This type of work is necessary if these beaches are going to be open to
swimmers, windsurfers,
SUP’s, kayaks, or and boats this season.

The beach in front of field 7 [the traditional windsurfing beach] is
actually in better shape than we have seen it in years. But the “sea
wall” at the water’s edge of the parking lot needs some serious
repairs. Mr. Auguste met with the State engineers about possible
solutions. So until we can figure out a way to close off the damaged
portion of the lot from the public, that beach is closed. We are in
contact with a State bonded heavy equipment contractor, who is willing to do the work. However the contract must go through the States biding process. Hopefully we will have some sort of resolution, or solution soon.

East Swimming Beach also looked well, and all hazards were easily
removed with just manpower.

West Swimming Beach at field 6 is the new windsurfing venue until
further notice.
There are several things to note:
1-      This beach is not all soft sand. It is rocky, contains shell beds, and
even a reef which will have to be marked. Wear your booties; this is
not a barefoot beach.
2-     Please respect the Park’s request to stay away from the lifeguard shack. It is leaning on its side, so you can’t miss it.

On our way home we surveyed the dredging and sand moving operations
taking place at Fire Island Inlet. According to George Gorman, Jr.
acting Regional Director Long Island New York State Office of Parks,
Recreation and Historic Preservation and Ron Kluesener, Chief of
Staff, T/O Babylon:

As of right now all of Robert Moses or Fire Island is closed.

Jones Island; from Sore Thumb to just west of TOBAY is an active work zone. Dredges, giant dump trucks, pay loaders, and outflow pipes are working 24 hours a day 6 days a week in an attempt to reopen the park.
Just stay out of their way, and let them do their job.
They are attempting to dredge and move sand from FI Inlet to build
dunes from TOBAY through the east side of Gilgo, and  to repair the east bound
lanes of
Ocean Parkway. There is a pipeline from the Inlet to the west
supplemented by trucks so the sand can be placed further west than the
pipeline can take it.
There is also a project moving sand onto the Robert Moses beaches as
well as to repair the roadway circle at the Pencil.

US Army Corps of Engineers. USACE. Has additional plans to dredge more sand  in an effort to widen and raise the elevation of the beach from TOBAY east. This project is fully funded by USACE, and hopefully will happen before Summer. But more than likely Plover nesting, permit delays and storms like the Nor’ Easter we had this week, could all cause potential delays that could push these projects to the Fall. We ask for your patience.

So until further notice stay clear of the work from RM, through TOBAY. Let the USACE do their jobs, and with a little luck we will have the beaches opened by Labor Day. Let’s remember, we still have access to
Jones Beach; which is currently open.

And more importantly when the authorities call on us for help; 
let’s rise to the task and show up.

Those of you participated in this clean up...
we can’t thank you enough.

Members of LIBAG and the Long Island Windsurfing Group, with Heckscher State Park Director David Auguste.