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The Shortlist for Dec. 31

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Are Taylor Swift's home improvements messing with the Rhode Island coastline?In one of the three towns she calls home, newly minted Tennessean of the Year Taylor Swift is a queen. But in the Rhode Island enclave where she recently bought a massive, $17.7 million mansion (paid for in cash), Swifty's property ownership is stirring up some controversy. A local New England newspaper, The Day, published photos over the weekend that show large cranes moving rocks from the Watch Hill, R.I., coastline closer to Swifty's enormous abode. It seems she's having a giant wall built out of stones scooped off the ocean's floor. Reporter David Collins spoke to multiple housing and zoning authorities who confirmed that the singer has not paid for the bulk of the permits necessary to, as Collins called her activities, "rearrange the coastline" for her own security purposes. Collins also reports that the wall Swift is building is located on a public beach, and that there is already concern over the effect the rock removal may have on tides and the beach.However, it seems much of the op-ed in question was an exaggeration. The Westerly Sun reports that Swift did get the necessary permits, and that the rocks being moved are unsafe anyway. Laura Dwyer, a spokeswoman for the Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council also assured the Providence Journal (via ONTD) that every caution has been taken to ensure the safety of the seawall. "Everything is on the level," said Dwyer. "[Swift and her team] haven't done anything wrong."Phew. All you Tay-Tay fans can now resume drinking tea, wearing kitten sweaters and taking selfies whilst crafting.
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