The Rhode Island Association of Coastal Taxpayers filed a complaint in U.S. District Court on Friday, saying the state’s new law that clarifies where members of the public can be along the shoreline in Rhode Island violates their rights as property owners under the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

The property owners are asking a judge to declare that the new law “deprives them of their right to exclude non-owners from private beachfront property,” and block the state from enforcing the new law.

“You cannot take property unless you buy it, unless you pay for it,” David Breemer, an attorney with the Pacific Legal Foundation, which is representing the property owners, said in an interview. “What we have here is an attempt to get a large strip of private beachfront land for free, and the [U.S.] Constitution does not permit that.” (Excerpt from The Public’s Radio.)


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