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The Bean-Seebeck Campaign Reacts:



A word about Judge Lawson’s Decision in the Grau case:

Jim, Mike and all of us in the Belmar Rising campaign are greatly relieved that Superior Court Judge Lawson has ruled that redevelopment law, with the special powers it gives the mayor, is not applicable to Belmar’s beachfront. In fact he said that the mayor’s attempt to use it in this case was “arbitrary, capricious and unreasonable”.

We are very grateful for this decision.

Judge Lawson restored to the people the protections provided by municipal law and state law. Any development proposals will now have to be vetted by the zoning board and the planning board. Those boards, we’re certain, will have much to contribute, as will the public. Any contracts the town enters into will now be subject to competitive bidding, with the winning bidder getting the contract instead of the mayor just choosing who to do business with. This way the town is assured of getting the best deal possible.

Lawson, with this ruling, also restored to us the fundamental right to petition for a referendum on the important decisions we as a town face. Jim and Mike fully support petition rights and would never resort to using loopholes like those found in redevelopment law to circumvent the will of the people.

It should be noted that Jim, alone among the council members, opposed the mayor’s declaration and was the only one to vote against it. Unlike the others, he properly understood that what Mayor Doherty was doing was not right for Belmar and was not justified by the circumstances. Perhaps we need to listen to Jim more often.

Hopefully we can now proceed with a smarter recovery, a more contemplative and careful recovery and a recovery that takes into account what the people of Belmar really want for our beachfront and for our town.

We at Belmar Rising feel that our town owes a great deal of gratitude to former mayor Ken Pringle and everyone at his firm who worked so hard to win this case, particularly lead attorney Ed Bonanno. Great job guys! Thank you.

Thanks also to Henry Grau and everyone else who stepped forward and volunteered to be plaintiffs in this action. One of those volunteers, our dear friend Steve Edelman, passed away recently. We feel terrible pain that he is not here to be with us and that we are unable to thank him for what he has done for us.

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