The Coastal Star

Briny Breezes: Town looks for federal funds following seawall damage

Palm Beach County towns and other agencies tallied $7.5 million in damage and cleanup costs when Tropical Storm Isaac’s feeder bands tarried too long in August.
    Last month, federal disaster officials agreed to reimburse local governments for 75 percent of their disaster costs.
    Former Briny Breezes Mayor Jack Lee says Briny ought to get in line for a slice of the aid.
    The seawall along Mallard Drive pulled away from the land behind it, allowing water to flow on both sides of the wall during Isaac’s visit, Lee said.
    “Isaac started it. Why shouldn’t we get reimbursed for it?” he asked the Town Council.
    Town Attorney Jerome Skrandel promised to look into it.
    One sticking point may be that the town doesn’t own the seawall and isn’t repairing it anyway. The seawall belongs to the corporation that owns the town. The disaster relief is only for governmental bodies.
    Parts of the seawall on South Heron Drive buckled as well. Corporation President Mike Gut said repairs have begun on both seawalls.
    “My family’s owned a lot on Mallard since 1958 and we’ve never had anything like this,” Lee said. “It can’t hurt to ask.”
— Tim O’Meilia

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