Beach Towns Emboldened to Get Signed Easements
With a recent Supreme Court decision behind them, officials from Jersey's beach and bay front communities are emboldened to obtain easements by any means necessary.
Brick Mayor Steve Acropolis says they've set a hard and fast deadline of August 1st to get easements from property owners. "We can do this together or it can be done through the legal system which is condemnation." He says if they don't get easements by the deadline, they will charge the township attorney to move forward with any proceedings to get these easements as quickly as possible.
Acropolis also calls out North Jersey Democratic State Assemblyman John McKeon for not signing the easement on the vacation home shares with his brother on the northern barrier island in Brick. "Assemblyman John McKeon has refused to sign it. You would think that a gentleman like him would be one of the first people."
Toms River officials announced a July 31st deadline Tuesday night before moving forward with condemnation action and they've authorized a certified real estate appraiser to provide a cost estimate for the hold outs. In a statement issued by Ward 1 Councilwoman Maria Maruca, she says the township will be sending out letters to every property owner that has failed to sign easement agreements, telling them they'll immediately proceed with a condemnation action if they fail to get signed easement in by the deadline.
She also says by next week's Council Meeting, they're planning to pass a resolution to encourage neighboring towns to do the same so that a continuous dune can be built from the Manasquan to the Barnegat Inlets.
Brick will be holding a free Sandy recovery forum this Saturday at Brick Township High School starting at 9 a.m. However, Acropolis says they'll be talking about rebuilding homes in an area without a dune protection system in place. He says they've received about half of the easements so far and need 50 or 60 more.