The Post and Courier
July 18, 2013
Charleston's The Post and Courier reported "Despite S.C. regulations, Folly Beach property owners keep right to build seawalls to protect homes."
Attorney Mary Shahid represented Stacey and Bert Weiss. The couple, citing a Folly Beach exemption, "built barriers to protect their homes from storm tides." Reporter Bo Petersen continued:
"The DHEC board ruled that the homeowners were right — the state didn’t have jurisdiction because of the exemption.
What’s at issue is a line in the sand, or two of them. The state has jurisdiction seaward of a base line that is decided by distance from the mean, or average, high tide line. Folly is exempt because its beach is more severely eroded due to the Charleston shipping channel jetties....
'The line is a fixed line. It’s not a moving line,' said Mary Shahid, the Weisses’ attorney.
About 30 properties along the beach are immediately affected by the ruling; fewer than a dozen do not have sea walls yet, Shahid said."
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Mary Shahid brings extensive real-world experience to her environmental law practice. Prior to entering into private practice, she was Chief Counsel of Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management (OCRM) for the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC). Ms. Shahid also served as General Counsel for the South Carolina Coastal Council, the agency that became OCRM.