Dominican Republic beach access law promises showdown

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This is of special interest to me, since in Puerto Rico, beach access laws have been blatantly ignored along many of the island’s shores (since . . . well, forever). Dominican Today (quoting Diario Libre) reports that a bill that aims to ensure access for all citizens to rivers, lakes, lagoons, beaches and coasts “will likely spur heated debate among lawmakers, tourism business leaders and hoteliers, with fines as high as RD$1.0 million for those who violate that law.” Good luck.

The bill, still under study by a Senate committee, list as infringements hindering access to coasts, charging for entry, the physical destruction of easements and the illegal occupation of the maritime zone by a private property. Repeat offenders face a fine twice as much as the previous violation.

The business sector however has noted potential inherent risks that “violate security and business operation in the tourism sector.”

“Nothing prevents an adjacent private owner from charging for the use and enjoyment of their facilities,” says a document from the National Hotels and Tourism Association and the Real Estate Tourism Association, quoted by diariolibre.com.

As for private properties, the bill specifies that it doesn’t recognize those which go beyond the “inalienable area or areas of the maritime zone,” registered after the 2010 Constitution took effect.

It also notes that the stipulation over the coastal strip doesn’t apply when the respective property has been registered prior to 1938, when the swath was 20 meters from the high tide mark.

For full article, see http://www.dominicantoday.com/dr/local/2016/7/22/60080/Dominican-Republic-beach-access-law-promises-showdown

For original article (in Spanish) and photo above, see http://www.diariolibre.com/noticias/ciudad/el-cobro-por-acceso-a-las-playas-conllevaria-multa-de-rd-1-millon-CA4424859

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