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Christie On “Free” Beaches

I attended Christie’s town hall meeting Thursday and tried to ask him about Sweeny’s proposal to force beach towns to maintain the beaches at their own expense.  He never called on me (he was probably warned), but near the end of the meeting he allowed my fellow skeptic Mike Seebeck a question.  Happily, Mr Seebeck had the same question as I did.  Christie gave some non-committal answer about recognizing the need to properly fund the beach expenses and said he would study the proposal and work with both Mayor Doherty and Senator Sweeney on the issue.

Obviously none of this is good news for Belmar.  Our solicitation of millions of dollars in federal and state aid has brought the beach funding and revenue issue to the attention of the two most powerful politicians in the state and the interests of Belmar and similarly situated towns are just a tiny speck in these men’s overall calculations.  Even if Sweeney’s bill goes nowhere, our beach utility will certainly come under a lot more scrutiny as a result of all this.  We can’t expect them to hand over five or six million to us with no questions asked about how we spend the revenues we collect.

I really wish we had at least entertained some proposals from outfits that would develop and operate the beachfront privately.  I’m certain that there are many companies out there that could have built a really beautiful boardwalk and operated the beach for half of what Belmar spends.  We would be rid of all the work involved of operating the beach utility. And how proud I would have been to see Matt up there at the beach next spring boasting that Belmar rebuilt it’s beach without one cent of taxpayer money being appropriated!


Below: A screenshot of Mike Seebeck on TV.

image001-2 Mike Seebeck


One Comment

  1. Tom Burke wrote:

    I sure hope our skepticism is wrong, but I can also see us confronting these issues only after those who would have put us in this position have moved on. Yes, we all pay, one way or another we are all going to pay.One of my favorite sayings has been “work fast, not half fast”, but in this case I think we may just have done both. I sure hope we are both wrong.

    Monday, December 24, 2012 at 6:06 am | Permalink

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