Failed septic systems due to beach erosion at the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Photo source: ©© Soil Science
A line of decrepit cottages along what was once Seagull Drive in South Nags Head has stood for more than three years as testimony to long-running legal battles between the state, the town and property owners. Mostly in dispute has been the town’s orders to remove what it describes as “nuisance structures” and its regulatory power over the public-trust beach.
Now a new ruling by the state Division of Coastal Management has added another wrinkle. It will make it easier for the owners of houses like the ones on Seagull to replace septic systems lost to storms on the beach as long as they are 50 feet from the water at low tide…