this week’s poll

Is it prudent for public funds to be used to support rebuilding on Rhode Island’s seacoast, assuming that there will be an increase in devastating storms due to climate change?

Posted 11/25/12

Hurricane Sandy’s path of destruction along the mid-Atlantic and New England seaboard has sparked fresh discussion about building and re-building along fragile coastal regions given the mounting evidence that there will be more devastating storms as part of global climate change.

Between mandating federal help to respond to natural disasters and the large subsidies that the federal government gives to flood insurance, billions of dollars will flow from public sources to individuals and companies that are located near the ocean.

Does it make sense to be spending good money that may be likely to end up washed out to sea when another storm hits in a short time period anyway?

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I can't even fathom people not supporting rebuilding our waterfront but then again I've seen so many progressive comments being voted against on this site that I shouldn't be surprised. Of course the state should be assisting in rebuilding Rhode Island's seacoast. People seem to forget; Tourism is Rhode Island's second or largest industry. It provides thousands of jobs, attracts tourists from all over the world and we are going to nickel and dime much needed rehabilitation. Wake up Rhode Island, we are beyond the stages of getting something for nothing. Or would you prefer to continue a sagging economy, high unemployment, insurmountable taxes and politicians make unsound, self-serving decisions. The future of Rhode Island is in our hands. Spend the necessary money or move. We need to start thinking positive about the state and get away from the negativity that will eventually bury us.

Monday, November 26, 2012 | Report this

This is a difficult question to answer with a "yes" or No" response. The reality is "It Depends". Public infrastructure (roads, bridges, breach-ways, levees, etc. certainly makes sense to support with public funds. Rebuilding or building private projects is a very different matter, especially when constructed or reconstructed in harms way. Federal flood and/or disaster insurance (or similarly subsidized such programs) often contributes to this challenge and encourages development or construction in high hazard areas that will eventually negatively impact taxpayers.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012 | Report this
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