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Marina/Maclearie Problems Multiply

Green Acres rules ignored as public kept in dark, state kept in dark. CAFRA violations also unresolved.

Here are the minutes of the one and the only “public hearing” on the proposed improvements to marina and Maclearie Park under the Green Acres program.  Screen Shot 2015-11-21 at 12.28.52 PM

It is not clear who attended the hearing or who took the minutes, but the purpose of the hearing was to inform the public and the state of the planned “Renovation of the existing commercial building serving the Belmar marina and the lease of the renovated building to a restaurant/bar operator to support additional improvements planned for the marina”.

The only public notice of the hearing was run in the notices section of the Asbury Park Press in November and December of 2013.

As you are aware the building has not been renovated, in fact it has been torn down, and we are now on our third iteration of entirely new building plans drawn up for the site. No new hearings for any building designs were ever held as Green Acres requires.  No information about any changes were ever sent to Green Acres and as far as Green Acres is aware, we are still planning to renovate what is now a pile of dust.

The “main building parcel” (where the Fisherman’s Den parcel was) and all other marina park land, including L Street beach and Maclearie Park land are encumbered with the NJDEP Green Acres program with all its restrictions and rules that apply.  One rule is that there must be public hearings on any projects or changes to projects that are funded by and therefore restricted by Green Acres.

As has been previously pointed out on these pages, both the primary building site and its surrounding park land, including Maclearie Park have also been encumbered by a 2010 CAFRA permit and all the regulations that apply to that coastal permitting.

While there were three public hearings on applications for various funding for a plan to redevelop Maclearie Park, there were no advertised public hearings on the plan itself.  Since all of Maclearie Park is Green Acres funded park land, going back even prior to 1972, pubic hearings needed to be held with respect to any proposed projects.  None were ever held, at least that I can find evidence of.

Substantial changes have been made to the Maclearie Park plan three times in the last two years.  Substantial changes have been made to the plans for the marina building three times in the last three years.  Green Acres rules would have required an advertised public hearing on each and every one of these major changes. Again, there have been no Green Acres hearings I can find. Not a single one.

So aside from failing to apply for a revised CAFRA permit to build a marina building that’s completely different from what they were permitted to build, the administration has apparently ignored Green Acres requirements about keeping the public and Green Acres informed of any planned new projects or any major changes to existing plans for the area.

As many of you probably saw in the comments, former council president and current Democratic party chairwoman Claire Deicke said of my last post on the topic that “all has been dealt with-borough and engineer reps have resolved concerns posted”.  And you probably saw the OPRA request I made to try to verify her statement and later the response I got from that OPRA request, which I posted up here last Wednesday (the day after major surgery, wow, what dedication!)  But I haven’t yet published my follow up request, which was as follows, including April’s two responses:


Screen Shot 2015-11-21 at 2.26.33 PM.

This tells me two things.  Claire’s claim notwithstanding, no borough official had any communication with anyone at DEP about the violations outlined in the DEP’s complaint and secondly that DeCotiis’s plans to be submitted under the “revised” CAFRA permit have not yet been submitted and therefore could not possibly yet be approved.

The only things that do currently exist are the four forbidden projects built in violation of the CAFRA permit, and the four CAFRA permit violations  that continued un-remedied to this date.

BTW, because I am of a certain vintage, the term “Green Acres” always reminds me of the 1960s sitcom with Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor.  My favorite character was Mr. Haney, who…..wait! Here he comes now with the new marina building we ordered from him.FullSizeRender-2

Hey Mr. Haney.  I thought the building you promised us was going to be much bigger and fancier than that thing!

Same old Mr. Haney.  We should have known better.


  1. Love the Beach wrote:

    Very interesting post. I truly enjoy your humor/satire and yes, you are dedicated. Time will tell what is to be proposed at the marina and if done through proper procedures. Hope each day fines you stronger than the previous since your surgery. Thank you for your willingness to keep residents informed. Much appreciate.

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 12:05 pm | Permalink
  2. Just Passing Through wrote:

    Very good where is Arnold?

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 12:08 pm | Permalink
  3. ms.perspicacity wrote:

    Seemingly, Mrs. Deicke is made to look like a fool by the administration of Belmar, being fed false tales and then passing them on, naively perhaps, or, as part of the overall scenario of deception. In my opinion, of course, as said party is a most contentious individual. Now is now; her (and the mayor’s) past “lovely” deeds do not count anymore: we do not need to be reminded about ramps for the handicapped and health fairs, etc.

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 12:15 pm | Permalink
  4. Katrina wrote:

    Again Dave I commend for your tenacity, even in the face of major surgery you’re on the job.
    What gets me here is the same thing that frustrates me about that the whole pavillion bond/vote. Deceception, diversion, division.
    Judge Gummer ruled against Mayor Duaretys funding plan and he deceived the residents of Belmar right through Election Day and we WILL pay the price.
    We now know they have been unlawfully using the Beach Ultility to pay for law enforcement and dispatch according to the letter Ken Pringle sent to borough attorney Northgrave. Remember folks, Pringle didn’t make the law, he is trying to get the town to uphold it!
    The Marina is just one more example of an administration who seems to feel they have the right to ignore the laws and rules if THEY think the law is not CONVIENENT. Decept, divert, divide.

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 12:53 pm | Permalink
  5. elemental wrote:

    Protect the trees! They recycle carbon dioxide and provide oxygen. Oxygen promotes clear thinking and good health. In the Lord of the Rings, Two Towers, the Ents were very upset about the killing of trees. An Ent revolution upon Borough Hall would be fitting. They are very slow, however. Faster action is needed, but we cannot count on the palm trees on Ocean Avenue, as they are on strike for being planted there.

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 12:58 pm | Permalink
  6. Planet Belmar wrote:

    Oh! to return to the days when life was, well simpler. There are benefits, tangible and long-lasting with the laws establishing Green Acres parklands. They truly have benefited all residents. There are true benefits likewise to you and I and our descendants for ecologically sound building in coastal areas ( CAFRA ). But our zealous mayor has driven a use of REDEVELOPMENT LAW into the previous. I believe it is the first time tried and you can rest assured that it will be another landmark lawsuit. As before, Belmar will loose this folly.
    GreenAcres predates redevelopment. CAFRA could work if it was the original redeveloper and not Chef’s. Chef’s has never been a redeveloper and no municipality has ever tried to criteria a restored and prosperous municipal marina as “blighted” or not reaching its income potential to the local government.

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 5:45 pm | Permalink
  7. Anonymous wrote:

    Please, everyone call or write the state. Ask questions.

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 5:48 pm | Permalink
  8. Anonymous wrote:

    Fix the infrastructure NOW. CHECK OUT HOBOKEN/JC water main break and sink hole. Reminiscent of Sandy and we are jerking around with CAFRA,GREEN ACRES and the DEP. crazy, crash, boom bang all through the town

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 7:18 pm | Permalink
  9. dizzy wrote:

    Infrastructure does not count because people cannot see it. Main Street LOOKS nice, that’s what counts around here.

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 7:47 pm | Permalink
  10. Resident wrote:

    People the area is contaminated also.

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 8:08 pm | Permalink
  11. Anonymous wrote:

    Based on your OPRA request, shouldn’t you have gotten a copy of the original notice of violations ?

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 8:41 pm | Permalink
  12. Eugene Creamer wrote:

    Belmar is still coming up light in support of the popular Shark River Dredging Project …. developer (Chef’s International) already violated the Borough’s CAFRA permit …. don’t worry …. everything will be OK …. when Chef’s embraces organized labor to build the proposed $6M roadhouse bar.

    Sunday, November 22, 2015 at 9:59 pm | Permalink
  13. Chapter 36 wrote:

    Based on the law ( even if you ignore the CAFRA permit ) Belmar was required
    to hold a public hearing on the changed use of Marina parkland Block 98, Lot 1 known as the main marina building 90 days before the planning board approved the revised Chef’s International design and plans on Feb.10th 2015. That means early November 2014. Maclearie Park would have required another public hearing right after Hurricane Sandy.

    Monday, November 23, 2015 at 8:51 am | Permalink
  14. admin wrote:

    Is it too late to put Fisherman’s Den back up?

    Monday, November 23, 2015 at 9:08 am | Permalink
  15. belmarguy wrote:

    Admin, I know the chief of police owned the fishermans den business. Did he receive any kind of payout from the developers?

    Monday, November 23, 2015 at 10:05 am | Permalink
  16. admin wrote:

    I think he gets to move into the new building.

    Monday, November 23, 2015 at 10:39 am | Permalink
  17. Chapter 36 wrote:

    I misspoke Referring to the “Roadhouse”
    most recent design it was approved as an “amended “design and plan by the Belmar Planning Board on January 12, 2015. The attorneys for Chef’s stated that new approval not necessary since they got an approval Feb. 10, 2014 for a new 2 story Victorian style restaurant and bar on the same lot. That would mean the 90 public hearing would have been required in early NOV. 2013. I believe, a case could be made for the need for a 90 day public hearing on the current approved plan no later than October 14 of last year. ALSO, the mayor signed a lease for the 1,570 sq.foot single story restaurant/bar with Chef’s on Dec. 11,2014, 2 months before the planning board saw and approved. Of course, the mayor sits on that Planning Board.

    Monday, November 23, 2015 at 12:24 pm | Permalink
  18. ALLTRUMPEDUP wrote:

    Does the Fishermen’s Den lease come up anytime soon. If so when and how is it posted, sealed bids (haha)? Is it long term, yearly, and for how much a year? Or does Chief get a special deal for agreeing with Matt on the preposterous, ill-thought out, foolish plans to police Lake Como’s woes? and 5 drunkfest bars.

    Monday, November 23, 2015 at 12:35 pm | Permalink
  19. #3-Don’t feel foolish-and not naive-Happy Thanksgiving, #3-hope the holiday warms your heart to overcome your mean spirit and insulting ways…

    Monday, November 23, 2015 at 6:41 pm | Permalink
  20. belmarguy wrote:

    18, very interesting… If they don’t go out to bid for the spot, its definitely a conflict of interest and taking favors with belmar’s top cop..

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 at 8:41 am | Permalink
  21. admin wrote:

    There was a public bid for the bait shop concession and Chief Palmisano was, as I recall, the only bidder. But it was an advertised public bid and anyone could have bid if they wanted to and nobody chose to do so. No conflict there.

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 at 9:16 am | Permalink
  22. Anonymous wrote:

    Where is Homeland Securit in this fiasco. It was obvious to everyone at the BOOTLICKERS ball that Belmar was an open entry area for all sorts of nefarious schemes hiding in plain sight at the beach and in the hills.

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 at 10:00 am | Permalink
  23. ms.perspicacity wrote:

    #19 Happy Thanksgiving to you and everyone. No b.s. served for dinner, just delicious, healthy food, ingredients openly revealed, no additives or preservatives.

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 at 11:18 am | Permalink
  24. Love the Beach wrote:

    Glanced over agreement. Don’t know if public hearings were required but would think so. #13, Chapter 36, appears that agreement is contingent upon Chef’s getting all required permits/approvals. Just wondering how much Chef’s investment for their big bucks project is costing taxpayers with borough engineering/legal and other costs. Should be -0-. More town congestion. Parking. Didn’t know they planned on building sooo much there. Ugh…

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 at 11:24 am | Permalink
  25. niccolo' wrote:

    Whose playboy is it, Christie’s, Maggie’s or matts? Front page of APP today, little slippery, NO? Is Kornecki at MSNBC around or did the port guys get him to keep your mouth shut like MASTRO told Investigation about that DOUGHERTY guy wherever he or she is, or for that matter, where is the residence?

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 at 11:26 am | Permalink
  26. Big ones wrote:

    If there is no permits why is construction going on today and why is the town paying $900.000 for a new bulkhead for them and why did Belmar use public works to move all the utilities and why where there 50 slips available this summer??? To be continued

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 at 2:02 pm | Permalink
  27. Chapter 36 wrote:

    #24. Love the Beach. Should have those numbers soon. The parking is a game of musical chairs and will result not only in more congestion but rivalry-parking wars. Those who feel their boat slip ect should come with parking will demand permits.

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 at 2:47 pm | Permalink
  28. An Observation wrote:

    No one that pays for a slip will put up with trouble parking, this is the end of the Marina, they will remove the docks and replace it with an old ferry boat or barge and make another bar restaurant.

    Tuesday, November 24, 2015 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

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