What Is BBLA All About?

BBLA provides this "Corner" to state the purpose of BBLA and its top priorities.  Keep current with BBLA through these publications: BBLA Beach News & BBLA Newsletter.


BBLA Statement of Purpose: 

* collect and disseminate information on matters that impact and are important to the membership

* present the views of the membership to governments, organizations, and the public

* work with community leaders and elected officials of the Town, the Sussex County Council and State and Federal Government officials on issues most vital to Bethany Beach

* pursue opportunities for partnerships and regional cooperation efforts across jurisdictional boundaries

* advocate for the issues that affect Bethany Beach property owners

* support local charitable and civic organizations that contribute to the well-being of the Bethany Beach area

* report to membership on all of the above


Top Priorities Based on Membership Surveys and BBLA Board Input:

* support measures to reduce nuisance or sunny day flooding in view of sea level rise and the trend of frequent and more severe storms

* support measures to control development and significant population and business growth in order to protect the quality of life in Delaware, Sussex County and Bethany Beach

* support measures to ensure bicycle and pedestrian safety throughout the Town


To participate with BBLA advocacy and committee work, contact BBLA here

Support to the Local Community

BBLA’s Certificate of Incorporation dated October 14, 1969, states the organization’s mission is “to carry on charitable, educational and civic works for the improvement of Bethany Beach.” Due to the membership’s generosity, BBLA has been able to conduct a variety of activities focused on the improvement of Bethany Beach. Membership dues sustain the organization; however, contributions included with the dues are what has allowed BBLA to provide members with increased communications and advocacy and provide charitable and civic support to the local community.   


Two Donation Categories: Charitable & Civic

The BBLA Donations Committee reviews applications for donations in both categories within the parameters of a yearly budget. Recommendations are presented to and voted upon by the BBLA Board. Charitable Donations provided in 2021 can be found here; and Civic Donations provided in 2021 can be found here 

Sussex County Buffer Ordinance

On May 17,2022, the Sussex County Council adopted a wetland buffer ordinance that improves environmental safeguards for critical waterways and wetland areas.  The new, 37-page ordinance will apply only to new residential projects proposed and built within the County’s jurisdiction of unincorporated Sussex County, providing new and improved definitions, closing loopholes, and clarifying the County’s protections for environmentally sensitive areas.  The ordinance went into effect in October 2022.  Over the past several years, the BBLA Board has advocated for an improved and updated wetland buffer ordinance by providing the Sussex County Council with information and testimony, working with other organizations in the region to ask for specific improvements, and by keeping the BBLA membership and the Town of Bethany Beach informed of our activities.  The BBLA has been a leading advocate since wetland protection and concerns about growth and overdevelopment are priority issues for the BBLA membership.  For more information and to view a copy of the adopted ordinance, visit Sussex County Ordinances sussexcountyde.gov/ordinances and the Sussex County Website

Effective Action Requires Strong Partnerships

BBLA is in the process of establishing advocacy partnerships. Watch this list as it grows:

    • SARG - Sussex Alliance for Responsible Growth - A non-partisan Alliance to inform, educate and engage the citizens of Sussex County as to the critical importance of the development, adoption and implementation of a Comprehensive Plan that fosters smart Growth, ensures a balance between a sustainable quality of life and economic development and encourages Responsible and transparent governance.


    • Sussex 2030 - a non-partisan grassroots group concerned about responsible development of the County, preservation of the environment, and economic development of southeastern Sussex County


    • The Delaware Center for the Inland Bays - was established as a non-profit in 1994 due to years of active participation and investigation into the decline of the Inland Bays and the remedies for the restoration and preservation of the watershed.  Being an "estuary of national significance", the Center for the Inland Bays is one of the 28 National Estuary Programs.  Their mission is to preserve, protect and restore Delaware's Inland Bays and their watershed through: Education, Outreach, Science & Research, Restoration, and Public Policy.

Issues/Action Items Corner


Mark Your Calendars for BBLA's Annual Membership Meeting via Zoom Webinar

Wednesday - June 21 - 5:30 pm

Featured Speaker: Sgt Foley, Bethany Beach Police Department

Watch for Registration in Early June



BBLA Advocacy Efforts for a New Federal Study of the Inland Bays Come to Fruition

BBLA has continually advocated for DE to be a non-federal partner on a Back Bay Study to identify and evaluate solutions to the nuisance or sunny day flooding which has plagued beach communities for many years.  Our letters to the Governor have been posted on the website and countless strategic meetings with Federal, State, and local officials have taken place over the past 18 months.  We are pleased to announce that the cost-sharing agreement was signed on November 29, 2022 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the DE Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control.  The agreement formally kicks off the Delaware Inland Bays and Delaware Bay Coast Coastal Storm Risk Management Study. Read the BBLA Press Release for more information.


Want to Know More About Offshore Wind Farms? 

The BBLA Board of Directors is exploring multiple components of this topic to provide objective information for BBLA members.  For an in-depth description of the various aspects related to wind power projects and links to numerous reliable resources, click here.


Please review Homeowner Best Practices for Effective Drainage and Flood Mitigation for tips on how to protect your property from water damages.


Growth Issues

It is BBLA policy to support and advocate for carefully planned, well-managed and controlled growth in Bethany Beach and Sussex County. We are not anti-growth. Through collaboration with all levels of government and non-governmental organizations, such as business groups and environmental groups, BBLA monitors the actions affecting growth issues. BBLA supports the implementation of the 2018 Sussex County Comprehensive Plan’s Goals and Objectives. Following the Plan can give us Smart Growth” in alignment with infrastructure growth.  

Click here to review some of the areas of concentration for the BBLA. 


View the 2022 BBLA Annual Meeting recording - includes short PowerPoint presentations and a guest speaker presentation on Growth Issues. 

Environmental Corner (EC)


BBLA provides this “Corner” for educational and awareness purposes. Click here to request the BBLA to cover specific topics.

This “Corner” of the BBLA website provides basic information on environmental resources (fish, wildlife, plants, landforms, etc.), highlights issues and challenges, and talks about opportunities to preserve, protect, and restore the special environment in and around BB. Web links are provided, when possible, so readers can delve deeper and learn more. 


Read the lastest work of Sussex County to update coastal wetlands ordinances


Read EC # 1:  “What is a Wetland?”

Read EC # 2:  "What is a Dune?"

❖ Read EC # 3:  “What is the Salt Pond?” 

❖ Read EC # 4:  “What Would You Like to Know About the Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins?”

❖ Read EC # 5:  "Did You Know Bald Eagles are Soaring in BB?"

❖ Read EC # 6:  "Have You Seen the Hummingbirds of BB?"

❖ Read EC # 7:  "What are Phragmites and Why Should I Care?"

❖ Read EC # 8:  "Bethany Beach Firefly (Photuris bethaniensis):  Much More Than a DE Music Festival"

❖ Read EC # 9:  "Learn More About Wind Farms"

❖ Read EC #10: "Forever Chemicals in Delaware Waters"

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