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  1. #1
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    Default New Constitution and Land (Beach) Ownership

    Hi all. I received a DR1 Daily News Update regarding the constitutional revisions which said in part:

    "The last straw may have been the passing of an article last week that puts private ownership of all beaches, rivers and lakes in the DR above universal public access..."

    Does this mean that the new law would override the "60 meter" rule and that individuals who own properties which include a small beach would legally own the beach?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by cocoleka View Post
    Hi all. I received a DR1 Daily News Update regarding the constitutional revisions which said in part:

    "The last straw may have been the passing of an article last week that puts private ownership of all beaches, rivers and lakes in the DR above universal public access..."

    Does this mean that the new law would override the "60 meter" rule and that individuals who own properties which include a small beach would legally own the beach?
    The way the provision is worded says that the rights of private property will be respected even though beaches are to remain public. So, basically, if a piece of land completely encompasses a beach then that beach is effectively private because you cannot trespass across the private property to the beach. I guess you could reach the beach by boat, however, since the beach is public.

    To me it sounds as if the wording is purposefully vague to allow judges to interpret it as they want.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by windeguy View Post
    What this tells me is the following two things:

    1. If someone owns all of the property along a given beach front, they do not have to allow any right of way for the public to access that beach.

    2. Good luck trying to be on that beach, even if you got there by boat, helicopter, parachute, sky hook, burrowed up from China, etc...
    Yes, from what I'm hearing and reading (which may not be all these guys are concocting) it is the access THRU private property which shall be limited.
    They also are quoted to seem to try to protect resorts' beach fronts from being invaded by non-guest swimmers with the reasoning that these may disrupt the hotel's operations and also safety concerns.
    There are mentions of tourism being a pillar or the DR's economy which needs some protection. I actually think, that this is a valid concern.
    However, what baffles me, is that as so many times, there are no counter solutions apparently being discussed or included.
    One would think, that zoning and planing which would regulate the creation of public accesses in between every so many resorts and the creation of public stretches of beaches for the general public/population would seem to help selling the idea of protecting the privacy of certain parts of the Nation's beaches for tourism and even luxury development. But I don't seem able to see that rationale being contemplated or it's discussion made public by the media.

    ... J-D.

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    I am not an expert, but how I see it , if beaches become property of few beach front villas without access to others, the value of houses/appartments on second-third lines and deeper inland will go sharply down. Nobody will buy them being aware that there is no access to the beach any longer.

    This law protects and benefits a very limited number of beachfront owners and hits the majority of other property owners.

    Also I see a time-bomb potential for tension in the future between local Dominican population and foreigners who took their beaches from them in their own country.

    I am not an expert like I said. Just a recreational half tourist- half resident So I may be easily wrong in my interpretation and forecast.
    Last edited by Afgan; 10-12-2009 at 11:54 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Afgan View Post
    I am not an expert, but how I see it , if beaches become property of few beach front villas without access to others, the value of houses/appartments on second-third lines and deeper inland will go sharply down. Nobody will buy them being aware that there is no access to the beach any longer.

    This law protects and benefits a very limited number of beachfront owners and hits the majority of other property owners.

    Also I see a time-bomb potential for tension in the future between local Dominican population and foreigners who took their beaches from them in their own country.

    I am not an expert like I said. Just a recreational half tourist- half resident So I may be easily wrong in my interpretation and forecast.
    I agree, and again I think that it depends on the government developing a zoning strategy which also preserves room and rights for those in "second" line and the general public.
    On the other hand, can you imagine the faith developments like Sea Horse Ranch, Casa De Campo or Punta Cana and any the sorts future developments would certainly and quickly meet if they would be made accessible to the "general" public wailing in with beer coolers, spaguetti con pan, cardboard and Styrofoam plates and paper towels they traditionally just let fly around (tu no te preocupe que eto lo recojen despues!) on big ol'l recycled school buses?
    Don't get me wrong, I believe EVERYBODY poor and not so poor, people from the mountains and those in first line should have unfettered access to the country's beaches. However, this must not mean EVERY beach. The privacy, standing and operational integrity of luxury developments and the tourism industry has to be protected too.

    Regretfully, laws like these tend to find themselves used exclusively by those in power and those connected to them, without any regards for the majority left out, under the veil of "modernisation", "progress", etc.


    ... J-D.

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    Quote Originally Posted by J D Sauser View Post
    I agree, and again I think that it depends on the government developing a zoning strategy which also preserves room and rights for those in "second" line and the general public.
    On the other hand, can you imagine the faith developments like Sea Horse Ranch, Casa De Campo or Punta Cana and any the sorts future developments would certainly and quickly meet if they would be made accessible to the "general" public wailing in with beer coolers, spaguetti con pan, cardboard and Styrofoam plates and paper towels they traditionally just let fly around (tu no te preocupe que eto lo recojen despues!) on big ol'l recycled school buses?
    Don't get me wrong, I believe EVERYBODY poor and not so poor, people from the mountains and those in first line should have unfettered access to the country's beaches. However, this must not mean EVERY beach. The privacy, standing and operational integrity of luxury developments and the tourism industry has to be protected too.

    Regretfully, laws like these tend to find themselves used exclusively by those in power and those connected to them, without any regards for the majority left out, under the veil of "modernisation", "progress", etc.


    ... J-D.
    In a perfect world, JD, you may be correct. But this is about as far from a perfect world as you can get and still be on the same planet. If there is any loophole to prevent public access to a beach (or rivers, streams and other waterways are also included) it will be used (and abused).

    Zoning is like electrical payments. It happens very irregularly and only at the whim of those in power. Until the legal system in the DR can actually get the muscle needed to enforce what laws are already on the books, passing new ones (particularly vaguely worded ones) is just asking for more headaches.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Castellamonte View Post
    In a perfect world, JD, you may be correct. But this is about as far from a perfect world as you can get and still be on the same planet. If there is any loophole to prevent public access to a beach (or rivers, streams and other waterways are also included) it will be used (and abused).

    Zoning is like electrical payments. It happens very irregularly and only at the whim of those in power. Until the legal system in the DR can actually get the muscle needed to enforce what laws are already on the books, passing new ones (particularly vaguely worded ones) is just asking for more headaches.
    I am sorry to say, I agree, Castellamonte.

    Quote Originally Posted by J D Sauser
    ... Regretfully, laws like these tend to find themselves used exclusively by those in power and those connected to them, without any regards for the majority left out, under the veil of "modernisation", "progress", etc.
    ... J-D.

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