Thanks to a lawsuit filed by the owners of The Page Terrace Beachfront Hotel and other owners of beach hotels in Florida’s Treasure Island, the state of Florida has increased regulations for beach events. The hotel owners argued that the huge influx of beach events in the small resort town was causing beach erosion and harming the environments of local animals. The state now requires anyone planning an event to present detailed site plans, bird and turtle nesting surveys conducted by independent groups, and permits for any activities that will take place beyond the coastal construction control line.
The biggest complaint of the hotel owners filing the lawsuit was that the city allowed cars to park and drive on the beach, which they claim is in violation of state law. Such activities cause damage to the beach. City Manager Reid Silverboard is opposed to the new regulations, and sees it as an unfair treatment for the city that not all cities are subject to. Their “unique venue, a wide sandy beachfront,” he says, brings in a lot of revenue and the new regulations are not a welcome change.
However, the hotel owners worry that the destruction of the beaches will lead to decreased business for their establishment if tourists lose one of the main attractions of Treasure Island. Beach hotels in Florida bring in a lot of revenue for the state and the local Treasure Island economy. Some aspects of the case may now be subject to a summary judgment filed by the city, but the new regulations are moving forward.