Town ready to replant barren dunes – Coastal Observer


Town ready to replant barren dunes

Some owners didn’t wait for the town-sponsored project to replant their dunes.

Work is due to start this week to replace 85,000 dune plants and 8,500 feet of sand fence on Pawleys Island that was destroyed by Hurricane Ian last fall.

Town Council approved a $140,250 contract for the work last month, but was waiting for approval from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. That is now in hand along with state permits for the work, said Town Administrator Dan Newquist.

Hurricane Ian made landfall at North Island in September and the storm surge swept away sand fence and many of the plants that had been installed earlier that year as the final phase of a beach renourishment project.

The new work will be done along the beach north of Hazard Street  to Third Street. The southern end of the island is not included because that area is part of a Corps of Engineers project. Additional sand is proposed for that area over the winter, along with new plants and fencing.

FEMA reimburses local governments for 75 percent of the cost of repairing storm damage, but the state Emergency Management Division has agreed to cover the local share for work resulting from Hurricane Ian, Newquist said.

“This is for any of the projects we submitted,” he said.

The town has already received nearly $30,000 in reimbursements from FEMA for the fall storm. In the past, it took years for payments to reach the town.

“We should start seeing a steady flow of payments,” Newquist said.

The town also spent $5,500 for a plastic fiber mat, known as a Mobi-mat, to place over the dune at the First Street beach access. That was done as an alternative to replacing the storm-damaged wooden walkway at a cost of $30,000.

But the state Department of Health and Environmental Control required the town to get a permit for the mat. An agency spokeswoman said the work is considered “major activity” because it extends seaward of the primary dune.

Public notice of the permit was posted this week and the Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management is taking comments through Aug. 9.

The mat is 10 feet wide and 50 feet long. It is currently being stored under Town Hall.



Georgetown County Board of Education: First and third Tuesdays, 5:30 p.m., Beck Education Center. For details, go to Georgetown County Council: Second and fourth Tuesdays, 5:30 p.m., Council Chambers, 129 Screven St., Georgetown. For details, go to Pawleys Island Town Council: Second Mondays, 5 p.m. Town Hall, 323 Myrtle Ave. For details, go to   , .