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News Link • Environment

The Destruction of Inlet Beach

• http://www.paulcraigroberts.org, Paul Craig Robert

The community circa 1950 originated in federal land dispensed via a lottery to WW II veterans. Winners of the lottery received 1.25 acres in exchange for a $50 filing fee and agreement to construct an 800 square foot block house.

Inlet Beach got its name from ajoining Lake Powell, the largest of the rare dune lakes that empty into the Gulf. It is one of three old Florida communities along what once was, prior to overdevelopment, the sceanic road designated 30-A, which runs along the coast for approximately 20 miles south of US 98. The other two communities are Seagrove and Grayton Beach.

When I first visited the area, there was little else there. The paper company, St. Joe, owned most of the rest of the beach front through several counties, and would not sell an acre. It was an undeveloped paradise known among those who had the sense to keep the place a secret as "the Redneck Riviera." You could catch three meals a day from the shore, crabs were plentiful, and sea turtles nested on the beach.

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