Coastal Economics

 
 
• In 1998, California’s beaches generated $14 billion of direct revenue. When the indirect and induced benefits of this spending are added, California’s beaches total contribution to the national economy is $73 billion.
 
• The federal tax revenues generated by this beach activity are substantial. The direct federal tax revenues generated are $2.6 billion; however, the total federal tax revenues generated are much higher: $14 billion.
 
• California’s beaches generated 883,000 jobs across the U.S.
 
• California receives less than one tenth as much in federal appropriations as New York and New Jersey, which have much smaller coastlines and fewer miles of beaches.
 
• California ranks eighth in terms of federal appropriations for shoreline protection, just ahead of Delaware. It receives just under $12,000 per mile of coastline, compared with well over $800,000 per mile for New York and New Jersey.
 
• While California receives twice as much in federal shoreline protection appropriations as Delaware (the ninth largest recipient of federal funds) its beaches generate twenty times more economic activity for the national economy and roughly twenty times more tax revenues than Delaware’s beaches. In other words, California generates ten times more federal tax dollars, per dollar of shoreline appropriation, than Delaware.
 
• A study of Huntington Beach indicates that much of the federal and state tax revenues generated by local beach communities do not go back to local communities. In a survey in Huntington Beach, one-half of all spending on beach activities occurred outside the city. Furthermore, many of the tax dollars generated within the city go to state and federal authorities. Overall, Huntington Beach’s beaches generated $135 million in federal tax revenues and $25 million in state sales tax revenues compared to only $4.8 million in local revenues from sales taxes and parking fees.