Celebrating the 'people's beach' in Oregon

Discussion in 'Local Government and Groups' started by Teresa, Aug 11, 2018.

  1. Andrew543

    Andrew543 Beach Comber

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2018
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    30A
    I found your comments on your trip very interesting -thanks for sharing! I agree the strongly that we should be careful of falsely claiming Utopia has been achieved somewhere where the grass is greener -or that it should even be the goal.

    I might add, there are some reasons to be careful about making too clean of a comparison between the two locations (Oregon Coast, or PNW in general, and SoWal, or FL in general). Obviously the climate has a huge impact -you'd have to consider, if FL had a tourist season of 2-4 months, how would that affect things both in terms of economic health/depression of the local communities, as well as demand and development (ie, . The have long been questions about the tough questions regarding economic health of communities in places like Oregon (also the midwest, and various small communities nationwide), so I think I might tend to regard Trump signs or policies as more of a response than the origin of that theme (assuming they are related to it at all). Reading your comments reminded me in many ways of the story of the long history of the park and preservation efforts in the Adirondacks. Of course it is beautiful, and of course conservation of the beauty is ideal, but one has to be willing to face the difficulties which may occur if you restrict industry -namely, few jobs or economic booms. Many locals in these areas are happy to live modest lives and be mostly self-sustaining, but there is a feeling at times that perhaps the combination of the people getting bigger eyes, and increased restrictions on their economic opportunity, can contribute to the uneasy feeling of tension between the two aims. Add in some politicians.....and it really can be interesting. There was a pretty decent capsule of the issue in the Adirondacks a few years back here. So while the draw and demands of various places of natural beauty/importance vary, as do the approaches each location pursue, there are similarities in the feeling of being pulled in one direction or the other. I tend to believe this is more a fact to be accepted than something to "fix", but acceptance of that does not mean apathy, but to try to find where the reasonable compromises can be made, and take a targeted approach instead of vast generalizations on either side. Tourists destinations -esp. warm ones with long seasons -can have a somewhat alternate reality compared to more typical places due to the seemingly endless demand so the conversations are somewhat different, but still I think the concept of finding an elusive balance is universal. Even in a one-stoplight town, if you were to add a second or remove the first, it would create that natural tension....

    Cheers!
     
  2. Teresa

    Teresa SoWal Guide Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Messages:
    26,843
    Likes Received:
    2,701
    Location:
    South Walton, FL
    Oregon Beaches: “No local selfish interest shall be permitted through politics or otherwise, to destroy or impair this great birthright of our people.”

    For more than 50 years, Oregon beaches have been ours — thanks to bipartisanship

    [​IMG]
    By: Ned Hickson/Siuslaw News - Updated: 2 weeks ago

    Posted Jun 4, 2019

    I hope you’ll take time to visit these beaches them during the months and years ahead

    June 5, 2019 — I have to admit that people are always impressed when I tell them I’m part-owner of approximately 363 miles of oceanfront property in Oregon which stretches from the Columbia River to the California border.

    Naturally, they question my claim once they see the 2001 Honda I drive.

    And as you might imagine, they are less impressed once I explain how I own this property with more than 4 million other Oregonians, all of whom have unlimited and equal access to the same beachfront timeshare — which we all received as an inheritance from past Oregon Governor Tom McCall.

    The truth is, even those who don’t live in Oregon received the same “inheritance” when it comes to the Oregon coast, which remains public domain “from the first dune to the sea” along the entire 363-mile or so expanse thanks to the Oregon “Beach Bill.”

    The bill, officially signed by McCall as HB 1600 and 1601 in 1967, celebrates its 52nd anniversary this July. And while I may not be an actual oceanfront land baron, the fact that I or anyone can walk onto any beach along the Oregon coast, at any time, without seeking permission or being obstructed by “no trespassing” signs, is almost as good.

    As I’ve mentioned before (usually in a quiet whisper), I spent my early years growing up in California before moving here as a teenager in 1980. As a kid, I was keenly aware that certain areas of beach were restricted because they were privately owned. Fences, property markers and signs warning of potential prosecution for violators served as reminders that a line of privilege could be drawn in the sand.

    During one sunny afternoon as an 8-year-old on Manhattan Beach, my carefree play in the surf unknowingly carried me over one of those lines and deposited me on someone’s private beach.

    From the deck of their three-story beach home I could hear someone yelling obscenities at me, ordering me to “get my _ss off their beach before I got shot.”

    Though I shrugged it off with the help of friends, the notion that someone would threaten to shoot me for drifting across an arbitrary line on a shore fed by the same surf shared by everyone seemed wrong, even to an 8-year-old.

    When our family arrived in Oregon several years later and discovered there were no privately-owned beaches any-where along the coast, I knew it was something special.
    Though McCall is credited with signing the official legislation in 1967, the notion of keeping our beaches free from privatization began as far back as 1913, when then-governor Oswald West and the Oregon legislature established the state’s ocean beaches as a public highway. The crafty move kept developers at bay for more than 50 years as Oregonians took ownership of — and no small amount of pride in — enjoying their beautiful coastline.

    It wasn’t until 1966 that the highway designation was challenged by William Hay, owner of the Surfsand Motel in Cannon Beach, Ore., who placed large driftwood logs to block off a section of the dry sand in front of his property.

    In addition, he set up tables with umbrellas and marked the area with private property signs.

    That’s when it was discovered that the highway designation established by West wasn’t specific enough and could be interpreted as only including the “wet-sand” portion of the state’s beaches as a public highway. At the time, according to the Oregon Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee, that meant that 112 of the 362 miles of beach property could be considered privately owned.

    In response, the State Highway Commission, along with McCall and the Oregon legislature, introduced HB 1600 and HB 1601, which Associated Press reporter Matt Kramer thrust into the public commentary with stories about Oregon’s “Beach Bill.”

    Kramer’s articles appeared in newspapers throughout Oregon, prompting beachgoers around the state to get involved, raising awareness and turning up the political heat in the legislature — where Republican andDemocratic leaders joined McCall in negotiating the bill.

    As a result, the bill passed the Oregon Legislature in June 1967, and McCall signed the Oregon Beach Bill a month later on July 6 — assuring that no lines would ever be drawn again in the sand along Oregon’s beaches.

    I hope you’ll take time to these beaches them during the months and years ahead.

    Because thanks to West, McCall, bipartisanship and the Oregonians who came before us, it’s more than an opportunity to enjoy our coast’s natural beauty; it’s your right.

    For more than 50 years, Oregon beaches have been ours — thanks to bipartisanship
     
  3. Teresa

    Teresa SoWal Guide Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Messages:
    26,843
    Likes Received:
    2,701
    Location:
    South Walton, FL
    I've never visited Oregon but I really want to go. For their coastline is there for me and everyone to explore. Wide open along the entire coast like a national park (some of the beaches and coastal lands are designated parks). Vastly different from our Florida coastal beach towns and uniquely beautiful from all that I've seen and read.

    The hundreds of miles of beautiful beaches on the Pacific belong to everyone.

    FB_IMG_1560998576496.jpg

    FB_IMG_1560999069118.jpg

    FB_IMG_1560999028041.jpg

    FB_IMG_1560998916861.jpg
     
  4. kayti elliott

    kayti elliott Beach Lover

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2014
    Messages:
    151
    Likes Received:
    50
    Location:
    Freeport
    I've always wanted to travel the entire length of the Pacific Coast Hightway. We just can't afford it.
     

Share This Page