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Mayor: Management Replaced Because Lifeguard Stands Left Unattended


I’ve been informed that whenever certain beaches couldn’t be guarded due to the shortage of lifeguards those beaches were marked with red flags and swimmers were instructed to move to a guarded beach.

Also..very important..Borough officials were always immediately notified whenever a beach had to be closed due to the unavailability of lifeguards.

Also, rookie lifeguards have already been getting paid over $10/hour.


  1. Hmmm? wrote:

    Not one guard or local resident should apply in solidarity and protest. Doherty and CC must go!

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 1:46 pm | Permalink
  2. Hmmm? wrote:

    Doherty says “too many empty stands”? What? Have you been to the Belmar beach? Great idea though Matt “fire everyone in February” and hope you get a full replacement management and staff. Oh wait did Chef’s or MerriMakers offer to take over the beach too?

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 2:09 pm | Permalink
  3. Elcho wrote:

    This article proves Doherty is a conflicted, devisive heat merchant and clearly nothing but an Ahole. No other word in the English language more suits Doherty.

    His vengeance is clearly rearing his head.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 2:13 pm | Permalink
  4. Maria wrote:

    Life guards very under paid, beach budget must have enough money to pay a decent wage, if not something is wrong.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 3:37 pm | Permalink
  5. Belmar Guard wrote:

    This article is total BS! This is Doherty talking about something he knows absolutely nothing about. Just stroking his huge ego to get more ink! He’s pathetic! I can tell you that over the past few years the lifeguard staff has gone down all along Jersey Shore towns. Is salary to blame, I’m sure it plays a huge part. I know if more people tried out and passed the test, they would be hired. Belmar being the busiest beach around has done miracles to keep everyone safe as our record reflects. If there was a stand down due a shortage that day, days off, bad rip current or whatever, I can assure you that the beach was thoroughly covered! The guards are required to stay until 7pm on weekends and holidays which mean some don’t come in until 10:30 am making that hour an a half in the morning a little short. But we make it work! When the water is rough, we stay late until its clear to leave. Matt, Colleen and Huisman have no clue what goes on down there. If they cared they should have contacted a supervisor at the time to find out why a stand was down instead of going to the media in February and “dumping” everyone. We have been working out of a trailer and tool shed unbegrudgingly since Sandy. Hauling equipment twice a day to the 3rd Ave garage across Ocean Ave. Now that the new building is somewhat finished you want to put new people in for no reason. Our supervisors are respected by the entire staff and all beachgoers. I think collectively they have over 150 years of lifeguarding experience in Belmar! As you state in your article, “this is a big deal for Belmar.” Your damn right it is! But its not stopping you and your big ego to talk about things you know nothing about! Belmar Guards are a proud group. You should be proud and appreciative of them and the many lives they save everyday instead of criticizing them about nothing!

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 4:11 pm | Permalink
  6. Anonymous wrote:

    “Lifeguards Forever” should show up at the Council Meeting and have a lowly Belmar resident read this letter. Ink works both ways Mattsy.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 5:08 pm | Permalink
  7. belmarguy wrote:

    They should also look into the drinking & drug use during working house on the stand. Mandatory drug & alcohol testing for all people working on the beach.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 5:43 pm | Permalink
  8. HOW ABOUT wrote:

    #7- How about we look into drinking and drug use for our Belmar Mayor and council because they don’t have a clue what they’re doing.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 6:03 pm | Permalink
  9. LouLew wrote:

    Smells like another Law suit brewing for the Doherty Team to . How much is this one going to cost the Belmar Tax payer. Glad I left that place as a resident. This guy couldn’t run a lemonade stand.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 6:20 pm | Permalink
  10. OLD MAN wrote:

    #5 Most of you people do a great job. Sorry this had to happen

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 6:22 pm | Permalink
  11. Anonymous wrote:

    Belmarguy it’s hard to dignify your stupid comment with a response but I will try. This is a ridiculous and false statement. If you have witnessed that type of behavior I would think it would be your duty to report that to the police immediately! But its never happened! I think the only person drinking and using drugs is you on your couch right now. Time to go to sleep!

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 6:25 pm | Permalink
  12. Anonymous wrote:

    Bring back Karatz

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 7:24 pm | Permalink
  13. Anonymous wrote:

    #11 I assume that you have never been put in the situation where reporting the inappropriate behavior of supervisors or senior employees could have negative consequences for your own employ. This is the culture that was bred at the beach. Drinking and drug use on the stand is not only accepted, it is actually celebrated by several of the past supervisors/captains. I could name names but thats not necessary here. Anyone defending the culture of the leadership at the BBP is either naive or has something to gain by their continued control. Perhaps spending more time actually supervising and less time at D’Jais or the Columns would have served them better. But knowing the individuals involved, I seriously doubt it. The fact of the matter is that they played favorites, permitted individuals with serious substance abuse problems to continue working, looked the other way on sexual harassment and underage drinking caused qualified, experienced people to walk and permitted multiple older lifeguards to continue in supervisory and senior positions without any ability to pass a swim test or any accountability for their day to day activities, many of whom do not live in or even near Belmar. And this at the expense of many Belmar or other local kids who could not be hired over the years because these people took jobs for 10+ years. Just look at the payroll and look at the ages and start dates of some of these folks. They’ll tell you that age doesn’t replace experience but how do you ever get any experience if these people never leave? And why would they? They don’t work on rain days, they make more than everyone else and by virtue of their “experience” they spend little time actually lifeguarding anyway.

    Bottom line is that this change was long past due. A culture change is needed. Not everyone down there needs to go but many do. And its not because they aren’t capable. Its because by doing nothing, they permitted this situation to grow into what is is.

    By the way, rookies in Belmar have been making $10 an hour since about 2008. At least the ones the bosses thought were worth it did.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 7:46 pm | Permalink
  14. Anonymous wrote:

    #13, there are more job openings than there are people trying out. How does this support your theory of taking jobs from the local kids. Most kids today don’t have the drive or ability to pass the test.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 8:16 pm | Permalink
  15. Hmmm? wrote:

    13 so you work at the beach? Guards still work on rainy days. You knew that right? You should have reported drug or alcohol use on the beach to the police. Nobody suggested you tell a Supervisor.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 8:39 pm | Permalink
  16. Anonymous wrote:

    Employment no, no.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 8:53 pm | Permalink
  17. Anonymous wrote:

    Isn’t there an active Tort Claim filed against Belmar for 2 drownings? If so, are the Mayor’s latest blather fodder for the plaintiff’s lawsuit?

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 9:02 pm | Permalink
  18. belmarguy wrote:

    Thank you #13, couldn’t have said it any better my friend! And yes there was drinking and drug use mainly on 19th & 20th ave beaches near DJ’s. Its also hard to win, when you have an entire family running the BBP.

    If you didn’t know someone connected to the …… Family, you weren’t getting a job.

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 9:13 pm | Permalink
  19. Anonymous wrote:

    #14- the BBP has only had the problem of not being able to hire enough new guards within the last two or three years and 1. It is because of the low pay and 2. It is because the town did not budget enough to hire all the qualified applicants.

    While I agree that some kids today would rather spend their time inside playing video games than working on the beach as a rookie for $8.50 an hour, I know several local kids who were not hired within the past few years who did try out. While they may not have been college swimmers, they likely would have been more invested in the job since they live in the community and had longer careers as lifeguards instead of treating it like a summer vacation/party like many of our more seasonal lifeguards do/did.

    #15- do you call he police on your coworkers? Also, imagine what Harry Harsin’s reaction would be if you reported anything to the police. That is a complete joke. It is an atmosphere which accepts and encourages that behavior. As for rainy days, does working include sleeping in cars, splitting the day and long lunches at PKs or DJais?

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 10:12 pm | Permalink
  20. belmarguy wrote:

    #15, can’t do that. The police are too politically connected to family & friends in town. It will be swept under the rug really fast. Nice try!

    Sunday, February 18, 2018 at 10:58 pm | Permalink
  21. OLD MAN wrote:

    I know…ask the governor to help. He’s a genius.

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 5:53 am | Permalink
  22. Judy wrote:

    I’m on the 20th avenue beach everyday unless the weather is bad. I also live in the area. I sit to the right of the lifeguards and so do all the ladies and there families. We been doing this for years. If we had seen any drugs by the lifeguards or anyone else we would of reported it.
    The lifeguards on 20th know all the families. Helped two of the ladies who had cancer last year to and from the beach. Save countless lives. For little money and love what they are doing. I don’t know about the other beaches.
    Too someone else comment.
    Last year on 20th two of the lifeguards weren’t back in time to do the swim test. We watched them take the test in the wind and cold.

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 7:05 am | Permalink
  23. Hmmm? wrote:

    I know at least 5 people hired in the last five years that never knew Harry so had nothing to do with their being hired. Perhaps few actually pass the swim test

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 8:06 am | Permalink
  24. Eugene Creamer wrote:

    Farm-out the lifeguard payroll & leadership to Lake Como …. they farm-out police, fire, first aid and court to Belmar.
    What is good for the goose is good for the goosee.
    Their mayor may actually know what he is talking about on this subject

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 8:34 am | Permalink
  25. Anonymous wrote:

    Cellphone surveillance tracked their locations plain and simple!

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 9:04 am | Permalink
  26. Hmmm? wrote:

    #25 whose? Multiple firings

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 10:11 am | Permalink
  27. Anonymous wrote:

    “from ACTING police Chief Andrew Huisman”

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 10:40 am | Permalink
  28. Salary? wrote:

    I am surprised it is a salary issue, many are double dippers with teaching salaries aren’t they? Many I’ve spoken with are in any event. Sorry if I am mistaken.

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 11:12 am | Permalink
  29. College Gragiate? wrote:

    So often a quote from matt includes poor use of the English language or improper grammar. Hard to believe he has a college degree sometimes.

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 11:14 am | Permalink
  30. Hmmm? wrote:

    If there’s more to this story to defend the firing of all Senior Staff. Why not tell the whole story. Defend your decision instead of using “empty stands” poor management as the reason.

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 1:37 pm | Permalink
  31. GAME ON wrote:

    The reason why there is no reason. Resources were placed where necessary. Empty stands in just an excuse for the Borough administration not being in total control. They the administration do not know what they’re doing. Leave the seasoned guards doing what they do best which is saving lives. Zero drownings during bathing hours. Spin that Mayor Matt….game on….have a nice Summer…

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 2:12 pm | Permalink
  32. Tom Dilberger wrote:

    If it’s two hard too get qualified peepul, can’t the ability to swim be waved?

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 2:51 pm | Permalink
  33. Anonymous wrote:

    The beach revenue is the borough’s cash cow for everything except lifeguard salaries apparently.
    JUST saying….

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 3:17 pm | Permalink
  34. Silent one wrote:

    Matt Doherty once again is lacking in integrity and honesty. Lifeguard starting salary last year was already at $10.05 per hour and has not been $8.50 for over 3 years. At times, The beach management had a hard time manning 16 ocean front stands along with one river beach stand on days with less than 35 lifeguards on duty. Police headquarters and the Borough Hall administration were always notified which stands were not going to open. Red flags were posted on those beaches and bathers were directed to swim at the manned stands where lifeguards were on duty. The tragic drownings occurred when lifeguards were not on duty. To place blame on the Lifeguard administration is wrong. These accusations by the mayor are defamatory and libelous.

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 3:56 pm | Permalink
  35. Guest wrote:

    The tragic double drownings occurred in front of the unopened,safety building. Mayor Matt Doherty chose to build the Taylor pavilion first knowing Taylor rent was at least 9k per month, before party rentals. The police call was to the 11th ave beach.The 2 Belmar school children drowned in front of the,unfinished lifeguard tower.

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 4:26 pm | Permalink
  36. Anony mouse wrote:

    Put Dave Schneck in a red Speedo and bring back smoking to the Belmar beach and I’m sure he’ll take the job.

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 4:39 pm | Permalink
  37. GAME ON wrote:

    Can I get an “AMEM” to that ! Mayor Matt stick to what you do the best, fabricating the truth with a straight face. Most rational people are starting to see through the facade of your compulsive lies.Look in the mirror and what do you see? A liar for hire….Game On….have a nice Summer !

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 4:51 pm | Permalink
  38. SEASHELL wrote:

    My prediction is that the Mayor will not run this November. The only running he will do is to run as far away from Belmar as possible.

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 5:42 pm | Permalink
  39. Meeting chaos wrote:

    Tomorrow’s meeting should be a good one. Bring your popcorn. Will huisman be there to take the fall once again or will he send his captain cronies. The mayor is pushing it off on him. Let’s hear what he has to say. Hate to say it but if they go in a different direction and no one is moved up within they will do years of damage to the lifesaving staff as they will walk

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 6:17 pm | Permalink
  40. Anonymous wrote:

    Is Jim Keady looking for a summer job? Is that why MD is dogging our lifeguards?

    Monday, February 19, 2018 at 10:23 pm | Permalink
  41. Fed Up wrote:

    To all who think that there is something wrong with the Supervisors of Belmar Beach, please read and be enlightened.
    First of all, all the guards and “guardettes” (really? can you believe that someone really posted that?)have to take an ocean swim test initially in freezing water and pass..not easy. They have to take a First Aid Course, a CPR course and a swim test yearly.
    If you go to the beach, I am sure that you have seen our guards in action. Everyday of the week and especially on weekends they are pulling people out of rips, finding lost children and administering first aid. You would also see our female guards in action >This is to the man who thinks they are hired because they’re pretty.> I witnessed one pull 3 different people out in less than 30 minutes. Same girl pulled out a man who had to weigh over 300 pounds. Not many guys could do that. Do you think 16 year olds could, Mr. Mayor? If your daughters were out there, would you feel safe having all new guards responsible for their safety? They probably would freeze out of fear and inexperience. Our Supervisors train these guards daily. You will see them running and exercising daily before the beach opens. They are trained to compete in lifeguard tournaments so they are PROFESSIONALS! Check our records for placing in these tournaments. We are always in the top.
    One Supervisor has been working the beach since he was 17, has been on the after hours water rescue and dive team, and also a police officer. Another Supervisor, also being a guard for many years, has trained hundreds of swimmers and had one compete in the Olympics.
    So Belmar residents, would you rather have this knowledge and experience leading your guards or put your safety and your family’s in the hands of Mayor Doherty, Colleen Connelly and Brian McGovern with an inexperience crew? Why? For a vendetta or to save money? At what cost? Lives?

    Tuesday, February 20, 2018 at 5:30 pm | Permalink
  42. admin wrote:

    Concerned resident: You can’t expect me to allow you to anonymously post allegations like that without any evidence whatsoever. What’s more, if public officials knew about anything like this going on and did not immediately and publicly act on it then they would be guilty of a cover up.

    Saturday, March 3, 2018 at 6:10 am | Permalink
  43. Tom Dilberger wrote:

    #41 – And just whuts wrong with the word guardette?

    Saturday, March 3, 2018 at 7:13 am | Permalink

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