With an estimated one million residents living within a half-hour of Massachusetts' beaches, the state's coastline is a precious public and open space resource. The state established the Metropolitan Beach Commission as a funded public review board. After the commission's inception, "park conditions improved dramatically — at first. New bathhouses were built, fences were repaired or replaced, trees were planted, trash got picked up on a regular schedule," writes Renée Loth in a recent op-ed.
"But state support has been slipping since the financial collapse of 2008, and is now below the level of 2006..."
It seems that the commission is not a priority for Governor Deval Patrick, who "did not request additional funding for DCR in his $36 billion annual budget proposal last month," reports Loth. In response, "the beaches commission is proposing a $7 to $10 million increase in the entire DCR budget, enough to hire 60 full-time staffers across the state."