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Daytona Beach Shores homeowners quickly try to reinforce their houses after hurricanes

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As the wreckage of multiple homes cascades down a cliff of sand and others dangle on the edge in Wilbur-by-the-Sea, just 3 miles up the coast, Daytona Beach Shores is bracing for the possibility of trouble too. “It’s devastating. Devastating and heartbreaking,” said Mayor Nancy Miller. “We do have some properties that are in danger.” The mayor of Daytona Beach Shores said she’s feeling more hopeful Tuesday than she was a week ago as the state and federal governments have said they will step in with support. “We are vulnerable to the next storm,” she said. Residents showed up for the first city council meeting in Daytona Beach Shores since Hurricane Nicole hit last week, voicing concerns and asking for solutions like a new sea wall instead of a wall built in sections. “We are also going to be a lot poorer. This is going to be a pretty major assessment we think,” resident Pat Murphy said. Miller said Florida’s State Emergency Management Director will spend the week assessing the damage from Nicole for all of Volusia County. She’s hoping to get people back home and tourism up and running as quickly as possible. As of Tuesday, the mayor said 10 of 26 buildings are now deemed safe for residents to return. Some buildings lost their foundation or were left with hardly any support. The city manager says some buildings will still have to be monitored daily. Some buildings are OK for residents to enter but with limited access monitored by the homeowner’s association. “No more than 25 people at any time to go into the building to gather belongings,” the city manager said. Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Monday the Florida Department of Environmental Protection will utilize $20 million for emergency sand placement for coastal communities impacted by Ian and Nicole. Homeowner John Reny is now taking a closer look at his battered beachside property. His heart goes out to his neighbors down the shore. “I feel awful. My wife feels very awful,” Reny said. Before Hurricanes Ian and Nicole, Reny had 150 feet of vegetated dune that stretched down to the ocean from his back patio. Now, they are down to 15 feet. “It’s pretty catastrophic,” he said. “We’re concerned that if we don’t get something in immediately, we will be like Wilbur-by-the-Sea. The ocean’s not forgiving.” Now, it is a race against time and Mother Nature. This week, Reny is working with the city, county and state to try to get a permit for a temporary solution: using sandbags to shore up his property y to prevent more beach erosion. “Our home that was here was built in 1925. That family had owned that land forever. And who would have ever dreamed in their wildest dreams that this was going to happen. I wouldn’t have,” he said. Reny hopes to have the sandbags in place by next week at the latest. And from there, he said his focus will be figuring out a permanent solution as a community. “We’re all working together to try to come up with a long-term viable solution for everybody,” he said.

As the wreckage of multiple homes cascades down a cliff of sand and others dangle on the edge in Wilbur-by-the-Sea, just 3 miles up the coast, Daytona Beach Shores is bracing for the possibility of trouble too.

“It’s devastating. Devastating and heartbreaking,” said Mayor Nancy Miller. “We do have some properties that are in danger.”

The mayor of Daytona Beach Shores said she’s feeling more hopeful Tuesday than she was a week ago as the state and federal governments have said they will step in with support.

“We are vulnerable to the next storm,” she said.

Residents showed up for the first city council meeting in Daytona Beach Shores since Hurricane Nicole hit last week, voicing concerns and asking for solutions like a new sea wall instead of a wall built in sections.

“We are also going to be a lot poorer. This is going to be a pretty major assessment we think,” resident Pat Murphy said.

Miller said Florida’s State Emergency Management Director will spend the week assessing the damage from Nicole for all of Volusia County.

She’s hoping to get people back home and tourism up and running as quickly as possible.

As of Tuesday, the mayor said 10 of 26 buildings are now deemed safe for residents to return.

Some buildings lost their foundation or were left with hardly any support.

The city manager says some buildings will still have to be monitored daily. Some buildings are OK for residents to enter but with limited access monitored by the homeowner’s association.

“No more than 25 people at any time to go into the building to gather belongings,” the city manager said.

Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Monday the Florida Department of Environmental Protection will utilize $20 million for emergency sand placement for coastal communities impacted by Ian and Nicole.

Homeowner John Reny is now taking a closer look at his battered beachside property. His heart goes out to his neighbors down the shore.

“I feel awful. My wife feels very awful,” Reny said.

Before Hurricanes Ian and Nicole, Reny had 150 feet of vegetated dune that stretched down to the ocean from his back patio. Now, they are down to 15 feet.

“It’s pretty catastrophic,” he said. “We’re concerned that if we don’t get something in immediately, we will be like Wilbur-by-the-Sea. The ocean’s not forgiving.”

Now, it is a race against time and Mother Nature. This week, Reny is working with the city, county and state to try to get a permit for a temporary solution: using sandbags to shore up his property to prevent more beach erosion.

“Our home that was here was built in 1925. That family had owned that land forever. And who would have ever dreamed in their wildest dreams that this was going to happen. I wouldn’t have,” he said.

Reny hopes to have the sandbags in place by next week at the latest. And from there, he said his focus will be figuring out a permanent solution as a community.

“We’re all working together to try to come up with a long-term viable solution for everybody,” he said.