Westport officials will now be fining people for taking rocks from town beaches.

If you've ever collected rocks from the beaches in Westport, it's time to stop.

Officials have decided to start fining folks who walk away with these beautiful stones up to $250.

Yep, at last week's town meeting they made taking rocks from the beach an offense worthy of a $250 fine.

I guess a rock or two never used to be a problem, but people are now taking them in truckloads for landscaping or artwork and it's no longer cool with beach committee members.

As Beach Committee Vice Chair Sean Leach said at the most recent town meeting,

We've got people that come down to take rocks. I've seen people filling barrels...and landscapers filling the back of dump trucks...it starts to get a little disturbing.

So the new bylaw's goal is simply to stop people who are hauling away truckloads of these beautiful rocks for use in rock gardens or other hardscaping features on their property.

Leach even said himself,

We all understand children, grandchildren pick up a couple of rocks. That's not what we're trying to stop here.

They are trying to stop the beach erosion than can come from this protective layer of stones being removed.

The rocks keep the beach where it is, which in turn protects the road from flooding and changing one thing can ultimately change everything.

So a rock to commemorate your day at the beach, totally okay. A truck full for your backyard, not cool and now carries a fine of $250.

You've been warned beachgoers.

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