INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana Senate concurs with state Sen. Karen Tallian, D-Ogden Dunes, that clean sand dredged from man-made structures in Lake Michigan should be placed directly on Region beaches.
Senate Bill 178 was approved 48-0 Thursday. It would end the practice of dumping reclaimed sand 10 to 15 feet offshore and just hoping that waves will push it onto the beaches.
"We are experiencing severe beach erosion right now up on Lake Michigan," Tallian said. "We just want to make sure that the sand gets put in its proper place."
Tallian said sand deemed unsuitable for beach use would be disposed of elsewhere.
State Sen. Blake Doriot, R-Goshen, a land surveyor who said he could speak for hours about Lake Michigan hydraulics, agreed the legislation is urgently needed.
"This sand erosion is caused by man-made structures, and I feel that this will move the sand, get it on the beaches and help the No. 1 industry in that area, which is tourism," Doriot said.
In addition to Tallian and Doriot, the measure was co-sponsored by state Sens. Ed Charbonneau, R-Valparaiso; Lonnie Randolph, D-East Chicago; Mike Bohacek, R-Michiana Shores; and Eddie Melton, D-Merrillville.
It now goes to the House.