LBI is Alive

Everything you need to know about the rebuilding of LBI.

Restoring/Rebuilding Information (News)

7/8 NJ Supreme Court overturns award in dunes case– New Jersey’s top court says the decision to award $375,000 to an elderly Long Beach Island couple for ocean views that were lost when a protective sand dune was built was unjustified. The court says a new trial is needed at which the protective benefits of the dune need to be weighed against the value of the lost ocean views when calculating the entire market value of the property. In the original trial, the jury was instructed to only consider whether the lost views were worth money, and not whether the added protection was worth anything. The Harvey Cedars home at the center of the case, belonging to Harvey and Phyllis Karan, survived Superstorm Sandy last October. Read more here.

6/17 Areas of New Jersey get new version of flood map- Federal authorities have released new versions of flood zone maps, which could bring relief to some property owners.The draft maps were published Sunday for Atlantic, Ocean, Monmouth and Hudson Counties. Those are the areas that were hardest hit by Superstorm Sandy last year. Type your address on this site and check yours http://bit.ly/UTVkFw.

6/14 FEMA removes almost half of Ocean homes from high-risk flood zone– Joseph Mancini, mayor of Long Beach Township, said 90 to 95 percent of the V zones on the bayside of Long Beach Island have been removed from the new maps. In December, some 16,000 homes within a 20-mile radius of Brant Beach were given V zone designation under the Advisory Base Flood Elevations, where there were none before, he said. “I’d say only 500 to 1,000 of those homes are still in V zones” under the new maps, he said. Read more here.

6/14 New Flood Maps Will Be Released Monday With Scaled Back ‘V’ Zones-Advisory maps were released in December and adopted by New Jersey, but preliminary working maps – normally the last round of the maps before the final versions are released – are due out Monday for Atlantic, Ocean, Monmouth and Hudson counties. The new maps will scale back the number of homes in ‘V,’ or velocity, flood zones, U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) said in a statement released Thursday afternoon. Read more here.

5/23 Tax relief proposed for victims of Hurricane Sandy– A bipartisan group of House members from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut said Thursday they will revive an effort to enact temporary tax relief for victims of Hurricane Sandy. And possible congressional action to help Oklahoma tornado victims could provide the lawmakers with a legislative vehicle. Among their proposals: Homeowners within the Sandy disaster area could avoid tax penalties for withdrawals from their IRAs or 401k retirement plans if the money is repaid within three years. That would free up cash for rebuilding. Read more here.

5/29 Homeowners Can Apply Now for Disaster Recovery Funds to Assist in Elevating Their Homes– At the start of the Memorial Day weekend, on Friday, May 24, the Christie administration launched the reNew Jersey Stronger housing assistance initiative to assist homeowners impacted by Superstorm Sandy. Eligible homeowners can apply for grant assistance at renewjerseystronger.org or by calling 1-855-SANDYHM (1-855-726-3946). The grants are designed to encourage homeowners to resettle in their primary residences and help them reconstruct, rehabilitate, elevate and mitigate their homes. Read more here.

5/25 Gov Christie Visits Surf City– “LBI, baby!” exclaimed the governor to the thrill of the crowd. The governor said he was “happy to be back!” on LBI nearly seven months after Sandy, adding, “It’s a lot different today than it was seven months ago, and I’m really glad for that. The folks here have been incredibly resilient and cooperative. All we need now is the weather to cooperate and everything will be fine.” Christie also shared his first memory of visiting LBI. “It goes all the way back to when I was a teenager here and I had a friend whose parents owned a house here. That was a long time ago. First time I was on LBI, I think I was 14, and it was in Harvey Cedars.” Later, inside, Christie would comment on his experience with Long Beach Island beaches. ““I’ve been to them all. All up and down LBI, the beaches are great.” Read more here and see me standing on a bench in my LBI is Alive hoodie

5/25 After Superstorm Sandy: Jersey Shore ‘open for business’– “[The media] always show that damn roller coaster in the water … but we’re not Seaside Heights, although our hearts go out to them,” said Mr. Mancini. “We’re really back to normal. There’s only been one business that closed.” Helping spread that word that “LBI is Alive” is the website lbiisalive.com, the brainchild of Pat Sepanak, owner of Sand Dollar Real Estate in Surf City on Long Beach Island, and her daughter, Sam, a December marketing graduate of Penn State University. Read more here.

5/23 Bipartisan Coalition Introduces Hurricane Sandy Tax Relief–  This press release was emailed to me, but I found a copy online. The legislation will complement the federal government’s relief and recovery efforts by providing additional tax relief to businesses, individuals and municipalities affected by Hurricane Sandy, including…Look-back Provision for Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit…Allowing businesses to expense the cost of disaster recovery…A new state-by-state private activity bond allocation for Sandy-affected areas to rebuild docks and wharfs, commuting facilities, certain housing, water, sewage, and solid waste infrastructure, and facilities used to provide electric energy or gas… Waiver of certain mortgage revenue bond requirements, easing access to capital.

5/15 Army Corps to Begin Restoring Beaches in Surf City, Harvey Cedars and Brant Beach Later This Month-Long Beach Township Mayor Joseph Mancini does not expect the project will be overly intrusive to beachgoers. “In the job specs, the Army Corps says they will only close a couple blocks of beach at a time” during the project. “And if need be, Long Beach Township will provide a bus between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.” for any individuals who desire transport to a different section of beach. Rochette confirmed that the contractor will likely close just two- to three-block sections of beach as work progresses. Read more here.

5/9 Flood map updates could move homes out of most vulnerable flood zone-Arriving at municipalities later this month, the “working maps” will offer a more refined sense of New Jersey’s flood readiness, which was glimpsed in December when FEMA released its advisory base flood elevations, according to FEMA spokesman Darrell Habisch. The previously released advisory elevations called for thousands of coastal homes to be built several feet higher, and greatly expanded the areas of the “V” zones, waterfront areas that require buildings to stand on pilings. Read more here.

5/1 How to apply for a Stronger NJ Business Grant– With a focus on the most impacted communities throughout the state, New Jersey is offering aid through grants and forgivable loans to New Jersey small business or non-profit organization which sustained a minimum of $5,000 in physical damage from Superstorm Sandy.  Eligible small businesses and non-profits may apply for grants and forgivable loans of up to $50,000 per impacted location.  If an entity has multiple locations in New Jersey incorporated under a single federal tax identification or employer identification (EIN) number, it may receive up to $250,000 per entity and it may use one application to seek funds for all incorporated, impacted locations. More info here.

5/1 Long Beach Island RebuildingClick here for video.

4/30 Christie presses LBI residents to sign easements to allow dunes– “The deadline for easements is tomorrow so I am going to have great goodwill and optimism until tomorrow,” Christie said after a Loveladies resident raised the issue.  Read more here.

4/30 Businesses Can Apply for Sandy Recovery Grants Tomorrow– Business will be able to apply tomorrow for Superstorm Sandy recovery grants at the website of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA), the NJEDA announced at its meeting this afternoon. Small businesses and nonprofits struck by the storm are eligible for the grants of up to $50,000 to be used toward working capital or new construction. Read more here.

4/29 SECRETARY DONOVAN AND GOVERNOR CHRISTIE ANNOUNCE APPROVAL OF NEW JERSEY’S DISASTER RECOVERY PLAN– Donovan, who also chairs President Obama’s Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force, said today’s approval will allow the State to begin the long-term process of rebuilding damaged housing, restoring infrastructure, and stimulating business activity and job growth. Read the rest of the press release here.

4/28 The time is short for Shore protection– Hey buddy, is this your sand? Well, come get it the heck out of my house!…That case is on appeal to the state Supreme Court, but developments on the island are already outpacing it, said Mancini. Many of the homeowners who were holding out in hopes of a big cash judgment recently found themselves looking at the other side of a legal judgment. Read the rest here.

4/25 FEMA Officials Discuss Flood Insurance at Surf City Library-“They were very helpful. And I was surprised how much information the website gives that a lot of people really need to know,” said Carrino. It wasn’t all one fun computer lesson on Monday, however, as that portion of the meeting followed a question and answer session with a panel featuring officials from FEMA and the Small Business Administration. Several pertinent issues were brought to light. Read more here.

4/24 Homes flooded by Sandy may have unseen fire hazard at Jersey shore-The fire marshal says even if things look okay to the eye, if you’ve had water under or in your house, you need to get the wiring replaced or you are really tempting fate. Read more here.

4/24 New Long Beach Island Chamber of Commerce ‘Created to Fill a Void’“This new chamber was created to fill a void,” remarked Long Beach Township Mayor Joseph Mancini. “This is not to compete with the existing chamber,” he added in reference to the Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce, a regional organization founded in 1914. “We’re not trying to exclude anyone; we feel we need a separate entity to help LBI flourish.” Mancini and Lattanzi emphasized that the new chamber is not a municipal entity; it is an organization designed to help businesses on LBI. Read more here.

4/12 Mold Guidelines for NJ ResidentsThis PDF can help answer your mold questions: Understanding Mold Investigations & Remediation, What Services Should I Ask For?, What Are Important Inspection Procedures? Is Mold Sampling Helpful? What Information Should Be Provided From a Mold Inspection and Remediation?

4/12 The post-Hurricane Sandy Jersey Shore? Bring the kids– As summertime nears, there are many shore tourists who are wondering whether to change their vacation plans this year because of Sandy. They wonder if it will be the same without theirs, or their children’s, favorite rides or ice cream stand open. Trust me. None of that matters. Book the summer rental. Bring the kids. You’ll see when you get to the beach. Read more here.

4/11 Island Contractors Hear Post-Sandy Building Rule Changes– The room was full, evidence that rebuilding is not a cut-and-dried process – not when federal requirements have changed due to flood zone re-mapping, which the Federal Emergency Management Agency has not yet finished. In fact, homeowners must now sign an “Assumption of Risk Statement” before a building permit will be issued in Long Beach Township, zoning and construction code officials said. Read more here.

4/11 Long Beach Township launching its own Chamber of Commerce to promote island– Long Beach Island officials are upset that the Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce is not doing enough to market the island and are working to start their own chamber. In early January, Mancini said, a group of business owners and officials gathered to discuss approaching the business climate for the summer season. The group was trying to devise a plan to tackle misconceptions from Hurricane Sandy and start advertising. Read more here.

4/10 Business Owners: Forget Sandy, “LBI is Alive”– Watch the newscast here.

4/10 Long Beach Island, N.J. Is Open For Business After Sandy– Driving down the main road on Long Beach Island, you would hardly know almost six months ago, Superstorm Sandy devastated homes and businesses.  Now streets are clear, most houses look intact…“I was amazed,” said Wolochow.  “I was really absolutely taken aback that it doesn’t look like anything ever happened here.” More here and be sure to watch the video of the newscast.

4/10 ‘LBI Is Alive 2013’ Video Ready for Metropolitan Airtime-Islanders will spot their mayors in the newest video promoting summer on Long Beach Island, “LBI Is Alive 2013” – and through the power of donations, a wide swath of North Jersey and the metropolitan area will see the shore welcome.  The fast-paced promo is on YouTube, and it’s also making its rounds on Facebook this week as the business and real estate community wants to spread the word that summer will be here on LBI. Read the rest of the article here.

4/10 Long Beach Township in Final Push for Beachfill Easements– And obviously we’re going to concentrate on where people want to be helped. You can’t help those who don’t want to be helped.” He added, “We’re going to put their names on the webpage,” at longbeachtownship.com. “That’s not pressuring. That’s not bullying. That’s for you people to see whether or not your homes are protected, and how your neighbors are dealing with the catastrophic events of Sandy.” Read more here.

4/9 Acquiring Easements for Beachfill Is State Priority-“The governor and I are committed to the recovery and rebuilding of the coast and the state overall from Superstorm Sandy. The vast majority of my time, 90 percent of my time and the organization, is focused on how we are recovering and rebuilding. That is our priority, to bring back the residents and businesses and get them on their feet, to bring back the coastal area for the tourism season.  See the rest of the article here.

4/5 Lt. Governor Impressed with LBI’s Rebuilding Efforts– Riding down Long Beach Island Thursday afternoon, Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno liked what she saw – many parked cars, businesses opening or displaying signs that they’ll be opening soon and shoppers strolling on the sidewalks. “I can see that Long Beach Island is back in business,” said Guadagno. Read more here.

3/26 CHRISTIE ADMINISTRATION FILES RULE PACKAGE ESTABLISHING NEW ELEVATION STANDARD FOR NEW JERSEY– The Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) filing of documents supporting amendments to the state’s Flood Hazard Area Control Act keeps in place an emergency rule the Administration authorized in January. The emergency rule and its final amendments utilize FEMA’s recently released Advisory Base Flood Elevation (ABFE) maps as the statewide standard for elevation of homes in flood zones. Click here for more.

3/18 Superstorm Sandy’s underwater mess in Barnegat Bay being cleaned up– “Our goal is to be out of here by the first of June,” said Buddy Young, operations director of Alabama-based CrowderGulf. “The state wants this all cleaned up so the tourists can come back and the people can get back in their boats and feel safe using this bay.” More information here.

3/13 Bill limits payouts to N.J. oceanfront homeowners who refused beach replenishment easements, report says-New Jersey legislators have introduced a bill to stop big payouts to oceanfront property owners who refused to grant easements for beach replenishment, according to a report in the Asbury Park Press.

If approved, the bill would limit condemnation payments for easements needed for future beach replenishment projects. The bill, introduced Monday, comes in the wake of a Harvey Cedars couple receiving a $375,000 award in a state court after they claimed their view was impacted by an engineered dune. More click here.

3/6 Dune Projects Face Objection From Property Owners– “In Long Beach Township, we have 470 oceanfront homes. So how do you have 300 people signed for the good of the community and their neighbors receive funds?” challenged Mancini. “I can’t do that. And we’re not going to do that. We just have to convince people this is the way to do it, stop being greedy. You know, welcome to LBI. This is what you do here.” Click here for more of the story and video.

2/22 It’s ‘Sink ‘R Swim’ time for owner of LBI complex of shops– Sepanak launched a campaign called “LBI is Alive” to get the word out that the island was open for business and counterattack the widespread perception that the entire Jersey Shore was in ruins. For more click here.

2/20 Tourism After Sandy (Part 2) “LBI is Alive”- While it is great that Long Beach Island is open, and will be ready for the summer, we must all do our part in telling the World that LBI is open so that vacationers can visit. As the cleanup process continues in LBI, and it hasn’t been an easy cleanup process, we must go above and beyond to make sure that everyone knows that LBI is alive and well. For more click here.

2/19 Poll: More Than Three-Quarters Of Shore Visitors Plan To Return Despite Sandy– The Rutgers-Eagleton poll released Monday found that of those who plan to come back, 64 percent plan to stay as long as they had in past years, while 13 percent planned to stay even longer this summer. For more click here.

2/18 Despite Sandy, Renters Flock To Jersey Shore In Anticipation Of 2013– “We really expected to come down and see nothing like this,” said Anthony Silver. He says that after the damage from Superstorm Sandy, he didn’t think a Ship Bottom vacation – their family tradition – would be possible this year…She echoed what … lbiisalive.com… telling prospective visitors: The islands beaches, businesses and rentals will be ready for the summer of 2013. Click here for more of the story.

2/15 Shore Shifted by Storm-In New Jersey, the shore has long featured an eclectic mix of building styles, from early-20th-century bungalows packed in rows to sprawling mansions towering over the Atlantic Ocean. While the shore has suffered from past storms, New Jersey never elevated its properties on the scale of communities on the Gulf of Mexico. Sandy damaged an estimated 346,000 homes and housing units in New Jersey, according to the Christie administration. Click here for more.

2/5 Storm Risk Fails to Deter Buyers of Oceanfront Homes– In a house on New Jersey’s Long Beach Island, the wallpaper ends about four feet from the floor, where the wall has been hacked down to the studs to prevent mold. “This,” says Nathan Colmer, “is what you do after a flood.” Colmer, a real estate agent, stands in a robin’s egg blue Cape Cod-style home a block from the water. Despite the damage from Superstorm Sandy, this property is hot. Within a week of listing the house, the owner received seven serious offers—a sign, he says, of the “ferocity” of interest buyers have in scooping up beach property despite the threat of natural disaster. Click here for more.

2/4 FEMA issues response to flood-map questions– Homeowners cannot appeal the velocity zone designation listed in the advisory flood maps adopted by the state last month as the rebuilding standard, but homeowners will have an opportunity to appeal to the Federal Emergency Management Agency once maps are formally proposed later this year. And homeowners can live in their houses that were substantially damaged from Hurricane Sandy for as long as four years while they make plans to elevate the structure, provided they do construction to make the house habitable. For the rest of the article click here.

2/3 The work of elevating houses along the Jersey Shore may take years– Some South Jersey homeowners, wary of higher flood insurance premiums following Hurricane Sandy, have already begun raising their coastal properties. They’re finding the process can be mystifying. New Jersey’s early adoption of preliminary flood-elevation guidelines — the final standards are expected in 2014 — could fundamentally change the landscape of many coastal towns as whole neighborhoods may need to be raised by up to 5 feet. Homeowners who resist the changes face sharp insurance premium hikes. For more click here.

2/3 Opposition building against new flood zone maps; some homes financially, logistically unfeasible to raise– Uncertainty, fear and outrage have become demands for action as New Jersey shore homeowners and officials digest the sweeping new requirements for rebuilding after Hurricane Sandy. An emergency order issued by Gov. Chris Christie late last month that adopted federal advisory flood maps as the state standard for rebuilding along the Jersey Shore has cleared things up for those whose houses were washed away. But the same decision has brought new problems for those with damaged homes still standing: How can they rebuild to standards under which construction may be logistically or financially impossible? Advisory base elevation flood maps are released by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to provide communities with guidelines for how to better rebuild following a major disaster, but they have been issued only once before — about nine months after 2005’s Hurricane Katrina. Unlike in New Jersey, the maps then were adopted by only some municipalities, not on a state level. FEMA also considers the new elevations as the minimum, encouraging homeowners to build two feet above the base flood elevation. New Jersey law requires at least one foot above. For more check here.

2/1 DISASTER RECOVERY CENTER HOURS CHANGE– Saturday hours for New Jersey disaster recovery centers will change to 9 a.m.
to 4 p.m. on Feb. 2. Monday through Friday the hours will remain 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. You can locate you closest center online at FEMA.gov/DRC. Help and information are always available online or by phone. You can apply for disaster assistance or check on the status of you applications at DisasterAssistance.gov, by using a smartphone or tablet at FEMA.gov, or by calling 800-621-FEMA (3362), TTY 800-462-7585 or 711/VRS. You can ask questions about your Small Business Administration disaster home loan applications by calling 800-659-2955 or TTY 800-877-8339 or emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov. Additional resources are available online at FEMA.gov/SandyNJ.

1/31 $350M project to build new Rt. 72 causeways slated to begin in May– A $350 million project to build two Route 72 causeways across Manahawkin Bay is expected to start by late May, but state officials promise that construction won’t get in drivers’ way. “It will be built south of the existing structure, off line. That means it won’t be in the way of traffic traveling too and from the island. You’ll see the activity off to the south; the new bridge will be built roughly 15 feet from the existing structure,” said Richard Hammer, assistant transportation commissioner, whom Guadagno asked to explain how construction won’t interfere with traffic. For more details click here.

1/28 Whelan wants Christie to reconsider adoption of FEMA flood maps for New Jersey– State Sen. Jim Whelan is asking Gov. Chris Christie to reconsider an executive order issued last week that established advisory flood maps as the state rebuilding guidelines following Hurricane Sandy. Whelan, D-Atlantic, warned that proposed changes in the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s advisory maps do not have scientific backing behind a key aspect of a certain risk zone. Whelan warned the financial consequences of the order will be devastating to homeowners who need to bring their houses up to code. For more of the article click here.

1/26 Advisory Base Flood Elevations– What does ICC cover and how do you become eligible? How can I receive coverage for rebuilding? Can I elevate my house instead of rebuilding? Find the answers to these questions and more here.

1/25 Common Flood Insurance Problems– What should you do when an adjuster: refuses to process an advance payment request? Equates direct physical loss with direct physical water contact? States the policy does not pay for mold clean up, mildew or moisture damage? States the flood policy only pays for the first four (4) feet of sheetrock? States the flood policy was never intended to restore he policyholder to its pre-flood condition? The answers to these and more are found here.

1/15 Building Department UpdateAs of 1-14-2013 the Long Beach Township Building Dept would like to report that:

  • They have issued/approved 12 Substantial Damage Applications;
  • There will be staff available for face to face meetings to discuss the building permit process and that the permit process for repairing a home will be fast tracked;
  • There will be a temporary Certificate of Occupancy (CO) issued for those houses that will probably sold as is without repairs. These CO’s will be issued contingent upon the buyer obtaining a Final CO.;
  • There is a link on www.longbeachtownship.com that provides information pertaining to the new base flood requirements and house raising/ICC information.;

Homeowners can also call 609-361-6687 for house raising requirements and ICC program for damaged structures.

You can also call the Long Beach Township Bldg Dept at 609-361-6679 for more information.

1/14 NFIP Grandfathering Information– Flood risks can change over time. As a result, the flood maps for those areas may no longer accurately portray the current flood risks. To reflect the most current flood risks, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is updating the nation’s flood maps using the latest data gathering and mapping technology. New flood maps (known as Digital Flood Insurance Rate Maps, or DFIRMs) are being issued nationwide. When the new flood maps become effective, some residents and business owners will find that their property’s flood risk has changed. For more information on these changes and how they affect you click here.

1/11 ***FEMA TEMPORARY HOUSING EXTENSION — URGENT*** Important! You need to call FEMA or check with a FEMA rep at a Disater Recovery Center to ensure that you have received the temporary housing extension. They are processing many cases and may not have gotten to your case yet. So you may need to call back a few times for a status update to be sure that you were approved. Call FEMA (24 hours) at 1-800-621-3362. To locate your center click here. Via Jersey Shore Hurricane News Facebook

1/10 Ocean County: Dredge Barnegat Bay by summer– Memorial Day Weekend is the target date Ocean County Freeholder Director John P. Kelly has set to get 1,400 boats, pieces of 58 houses and at least eight motor vehicles out of Barnegat Bay. Gov. Chris Christie made dredging Barnegat Bay a top priority in his State of the State address Tuesday. For more information click here.

12/19 Menendez Pushes for Sandy Recovery Package– Last night, U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) again took to the floor of the Senate to push for approval of the $60.4 billion Sandy Recovery package now being debated in the U.S. Congress.   Menendez spoke in response to criticisms being leveled by some Republicans over elements of the emergency funding measure which has been proposed by the Obama Administration and supported by Governors Christie and Cuomo. For more information click here.

12/19 Plumbers Warn of Gas Line Hoop-Up Scams, Dangers– An original New Jersey Natural Gas estimate of six months to have gas service returned to Long Beach Island and surrounding towns following Superstorm Sandy was cut short by vigilant utility workers whose work included replacing or repairing approximately 14,000 gas meters. The early finish on the work set off a flood of phone calls to plumbers in the area from those seeking to have their gas restored…Companies agreed the price to restore service should range between $250 on the low end to $350 on the high end, depending on the home’s needs. Any price lower may mean one is receiving shoddy work from a contractor without a plumbing license. A higher price could mean price gouging. The job itself should take anywhere from half an hour to two hours. For more information  click here.

12/19 Governor Christie Announces Partnership with Industry will Assist Small Business Recovery– “Rebuilding our state after the devastation of Hurricane Sandy is the most important and pressing challenge before us,” said Governor Christie. “Helping small businesses means helping the backbone of our economy statewide – and particularly in the hardest-hit shore communities where our small businesses are a foundation of our way of life. This business impact survey will help us better understand what resources these businesses need to get back to normal operations, whether it’s low interest loans, streamlining the permitting process, or identifying emerging issues and concerns. I want to thank New Jersey’s business leaders for partnering with us in support of their members and the broader business community during this vital recovery and rebuilding phase.” For the rest of the article click here.

12/18 Christie Administration Announces extension for New Jerseyans Affected by Hurricane Sandy to Register for Disaster Assistance–  The Christie Administration today announced that New Jersey residents affected by Hurricane Sandy now have until January 30, 2013 (Updated: March 1) to register for disaster assistance through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). “The single most important step people can take in this recovery period is to register with FEMA, if they haven’t already,” said Governor Christie. “The process of a family receiving any type of federal disaster assistance begins with registering as a disaster survivor with FEMA and working with a coordinator to determine what sort of relief they are eligible for. This extension will help us ensure that anyone who has been affected by the storm gets registered and the help they need and deserve.” For more information click here.

Lost or abandoned Boats Boat owners or insurance companies trying to locate a lost or abandoned
vessel should call the NJSP Point Pleasant Station at (732)899-5051.

No loss of benefits for NJ Seniors receiving disaster aid Seniors who suffered losses due to
Hurricane Sandy don’t have to worry about being hit a second time if they receive disaster funds.
FEMA disaster assistance is not counted as income, is not taxed, and has no effect on Social Security
or other government benefits. Seniors and others who had disaster related losses are encouraged to
register and apply for assistance online at http://www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by web enabled mobile device
at m.fema.gov; by phone or 711/VRS, call 800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 800-462-7585. NJ seniors
affected by the storm can find out how to apply for an SBA loan by calling 800-659-2955 or by visiting
http://www.sba.gov/disaster. For more information about other elder care issues, call the national referral
service, Eldercare Locators, at 800-677-1116.

Changed your mind about staying in your storm damaged home? Thousands of New Jersey
survivors answered “will not relocate” when FEMA housing inspectors asked what they planned to do
while repairs are being made on their homes or apartments. That response made them ineligible for
FEMA temporary housing assistance. Some who would like FEMA help today may find the window still
open. Here’s what to do: 1) If it has been less than 30 days since you received a FEMA determination
letter, call 800-621-3362 and tell FEMA that your housing situation has changed and that you’d
like temporary housing assistance; 2) if it has been more than 30 days since you received a FEMA
determination letter, you will need to reply in a letter to FEMA stating that you want to change your
earlier response, explain how your circumstances have changed and that you’d like FEMA temporary
housing assistance.

FEMA Assistance denial – option for appeal Survivors have the right to appeal the Federal
Emergency Management Agency’s decision about what assistance they can receive. You may ask for
another review to appeal the amount or type of help provided or any other decision about federal
disaster assistance. Review the “Help After a Disaster” applicant’s guide, which explains the different
types of assistance that may be available to survivors and could answer some questions you have about
the appeal process. Each applicant receives a copy and it is available online at http://www.fema.gov/help-
after-disaster. If you would like to speak with a specialist who will listen and help you with the appeal
process, you can visit a local Disaster Recovery Center or call FEMA 800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 800-
462-7585.

WATCH VIDEO:

This has been a divisive issue on this island for years and it has led to legal fights. An attorney representing some of the holdouts says his clients aren’t against dune projects, they just want to be fairly compensated.

Attorney Ken Porro said many of the property owners are not wealthy and depend on rental incomes to support the property.

“If you take away their access by putting in a dune, you take away their views, their property values depreciate. But what happens with the dune easements is there’s no compensation for loss of value, there’s no compensation in taxes,” said Porro.

Other shore communities have tackled this problem by using eminent domain to take properties. But Mancini hopes that won’t be necessary because some holdouts have changed their minds after seeing the devastation of superstorm Sandy.

“I signed my oceanfront easement. All my friends signed their easements. It was the thing to do,” Mancini said.

A map in town hall has a list of the property owners who have not signed easements. Attorney Ken Porro says this list is also online.

“When the mayor posts people’s names who are upholding their constitutional civil rights … shame on him,” said Porro.

Mancini responded that “[Porro’s] absolute untruths, lies have cost hundreds of millions of dollars worth of damages because he’s telling people things that are not going to happen.”

The first post-Sandy dune project will likely be in hard hit Holgate. Where the mayor says, there is just one remaining holdout. But previous dune projects will also need replenishing. They mayor believes it is the only way, the shore will recover and survive against another devastating storm.

49 thoughts on “Dune Projects Face Objection From Property Owners”

  1. Ken Porro said, ““If you take away their access by putting in a dune, you take away their views, their property values depreciate. But what happens with the dune easements is there’s no compensation for loss of value, there’s no compensation in taxes.”

    This makes very little sense. Because if you don’t put in a dune, that oceanfront property has no protection from a storm. As a result, its resale value would be almost worthless. And renters would have no assurance that the space they put a deposit on in February would be in livable condition that summer. An oceanfront home without “putting in a dune” is like a car without bumpers, or an infant in a car without a baby seat. The odds of impact may be low, but the result when it happens could be devastating.

  2. Mr. Porro can put any spin on this he wants. The bottom line is Mr Porro is the one who stands to gain the most.. He does not give a damn about the property owners, the community or any of those holdouts. He is using the Constitution as a cloak to prey on property owners to finance his own payday. Compensation for the loss of value? What value is there in an unprotected property? Now that the world has seen the damage done by Hurricane Sandy. we know that we are never truly safe from Mother Nature. or the likes of people like Mr. Porro.

  3. Mr Porro is nothing more than a glorified ambulance chaser! The only people who will win in the end are the people at his law firm and himself. The loser’s will be the property owners whom he’s claiming he has their best interests in mind and the many many people on these beachfront communities who will have their property values drop due to not having beach replenishment. Eventually ALL NJ residents will suffer due to the increase in taxes from this pointless litigation and the drop in property values. The shore communities bring in Billions and Billions of dollars to NJ’s economy, and we can not afford to loose that revenue. Southern Ocean county brought in $1.12 BILLION in tourism dollars in 2012 and LBI Region tourism supports 14% of all employment to Ocean County. This is something that the state can’t afford to loose! Mr Porro, Stop telling half truths to good people to line your pockets!

  4. Mr. Porro collects fees from his clients, while counselling them to let their property value decrease. Makes no sense. This is all about the money, and Mr. Porro’s clients are losing money every day they listen to his poor advice. I lost my home in the trailer park because the dunes were breached in Holgate. Where’s my compensation for that Mr. Porro?

  5. I respect the property rights of homeowners. In fact, I wish I’d had more say in protecting my property and the beaches the taxes ALL Holgate homeowners pay to maintain. Sadly, because there were many beachfront homeowners in Holgate who did not sign the easements to allow beach replenishment, on the beach in front of their homes, many other residents in Holgate have now lost their homes completely or have thousands of dollars worth of damage. Where was OUR right to be protected, to protect our homes and financial investments? Mr. Porro and his client don’t seem to be concerned at all about the hundreds of other property owners in Holgate and our property rights. Holgate now needs one last client of Mr. Porro’s to sign the easement so that the entire community in Holgate will be protected from future storms, including his client’s property. He’s in it for a big, easy payday and some free press for his law firm. How much will his client get once he takes his cut? Not as much as they have been promised by him, I’m sure. It seems unconstitutional that hundreds of people will suffer the loss of the property protection beach replenishment would offer because of the rights of just one person. I hope the last property owner reconsiders and finally allows the beach replenishment project to begin, and soon. If that homeowner waits much longer another storm may come along and they may join the many residents in Holgate who no longer have a home left to protect.

  6. I really hope the last holdout signs their easement and the Holgate beach replenishment project starts this year. How can you claim to care about your home and the town where you live and not sign? Makes no sense to me. And they claim you’ll lose your view? You live ON the beach, you’ll always have a view, just maybe not the same one you used to have. Take a few steps outside and go on the beach.

  7. A tragedy such as Super Storm Sandy brings out the best and the worst in all of us. Thankfully, my husband and I are truly blessed to be surrounded by loving,helpful people who have supported us with comfort and concern. Even though we have to demolish our primary residence in Holgate and start over, we know we can count on the support of family, friends and neighbors to sustain us through this difficult time. There are countless others who, like us, share a network of human beings sharing their grief. We depend on them for moral support… not financial. Now, when money gets involved in the mix, it becomes a totally different scenario. A loss of a view will never win an arguement over the loss of a home and the valuables that go with it. It is time to move on to the new “norm”. Things will never be the same and we have to adjust to the fact that in order to make LBI safe for all of us to enjoy, we need to make some sacrifices to protect our properties… be it elevating, demolishing and starting over or signing an easement for the good of the whole.

  8. Is there a way for people to find out who the holdouts on the island are so that we don’t rent from them? I’d rather spend my money on a property where I know the owner cares about the community.

    • That is a very interesting thought. I wonder what effect it would have on the reasoning of the holdouts that do rent their houses out if a list of addresses for the rental houses and rental agencies was available. Since this is a monetary issue, maybe it would be good to let people “vote with their wallets”

  9. I loved having family get-togethers at the shore and even contemplated buying one to “share” amongst the cousins. There’s no way we would put ourselves in that kind of jeopardy (financially) now. Not sure if any promise of protection/insurance could get me to risk it as a vacation home as many totally lost out. Sad, I really like the shore, but I don’t see there being anything to go back to.

    • This kind of devastation happened before, in 1962. It’s very uncommon for a storm to have the power that Sandy had. If this were 1962 and you felt the same way, you would have missed out on over 50 great years at the shore! There’s plenty to go back to– most businesses are open already and the whole POINT of the shore is the ocean and beach and that’s still there!

  10. I read this article with interest. My community was very proud of our dune and some of it was I bet close to 30′ high. After Sandy it was totally gone. In part due to the bulkheadded beach to our north. When long beach says they are building a dune will you harden it in any way? I would propose if you are going to build a dune that you add a PVC bulkhead of about 30′ depth that will come 22 feet high. Wind and dune growth will cover the wall in time. Till then stairs can help with beach access to limit foot traffic over the dune. This will protect and enhance beach front values. Anyone in long bech not wanting this I will give you the compensation I got for my place being gone 100% and you just give me the keys to your place. I will make the extra drive from Mantoloking. Better yet we have a bus trip for the hold outs to tour Mantoloking. Maybe that would open some eyes.

  11. No man is an island and, through shared responsibility, everyone in a community experiences a sense of well-being. The triumphs and tragedies of one are the triumphs and tragedies of others. This sense of togetherness is what makes the community grow and prosper. Unlike other parts of LBI, Holgate has been the worst affected by Sandy largely in part because of lack of protection due to the absence of dunes. The widespread damage to homes and the closure of the trailer park due to complete devastation would leave even the most hardened among us in tears. Although Holgate will never be the same again, the community will rebuild and the community spirit will be rekindled. But this can only be possible if all of us in the community come together for the common good – the greatest good for the greatest number of people. In this context, I am appealing to Mr. Porro to drop his case and convince his client to join and be part of the community in helping Holgate to rebuild and emerge stronger than before.

  12. Mr. Porro’s misleading advice to clients has caused hundreds of millions of $$ in damage to our town. Not only have ocean front homes been destroyed due to lack of dune replenishment but also the homes behind them. The fact is that without beach replenishment all of our home values will decrease because all it takes is another storm to breach the temporary dunes. The lone holdout in Holgate needs to see that this is not just about her but the entire community.

    • Well said! She also needs to realize that this will be quite costly for her, and that her attorney is filling her head with visions of dollars that will never materialize! He will be the only one to get any substantial money out of this situation.

    • Just take the property, eminent domain. If I were mayor I’d give all these holdouts in Long Beach Township a final date and, if the easement isn’t signed by then, TAKE THE PROPERTY. I am usually TOTALLY against this sort of thing but they are putting everyone in jeopardy so the heck with them!

  13. Without the dunes, the property value of the holdouts goes down along with everyone elses. The property is worth so much less with no dune in front to protect it from storms. It is worth so much less with destroyed and boarded up homes surrounding it. It is worth so much less if no one will buy or rent in Holgate due to the fear of another storm. The last holdout whose house is dangling 16 feet in the air due to the loss of the present dune, still won’t sign. Mr Porro said the owners want to be compensated for a decrease in property value. It comes down to money. They want money to compensate for the loss of their view. To me, it isn’t lost. They can raise the house to see over the dune. Yes, they have to pay to raise the house, but they have to pay to repair the house now anyway and in the end they get their view . The rest of us have to pay to repair/replace our houses and we don’t get a view of the ocean when we’re done. Our lives have been severely impacted by those who chose not to sign and now we have to pay for the fall out from that choice. This is my primary residence. My belongings were washed away, things that have sentimental value that cannot ever be replaced. Insurance (which I have faithfully paid for 25 years) is paying a pittance against my repairs. I am not alone and the Holgate Community has pulled together with support for one another. We are coping with damages that could have been much less if the choice to sign had been made 10 years ago when first proposed. Dunes would have been in place and as evidenced by other replenished parts of the island, damages would not have been catastrophic. I can only hope that those who have not signed can see/hear past their attorneys and realize that the very thing they feel they are holding out for (property values and views) are slipping away from them day by day.

  14. Mr Parro is talking like a abulance crashing lawyer. Talking trash and not speaking the turth. He talks about vaules going down, yes they are going down because he has told his client that they should be compensated for a view that has no value without any beach replenishment. Without beach replenishment all of the property is losing value. Has he told that to his client. He states that without beach access there is lost of value to his client. That is not true because they can build a private beach access across the dune so long as it meets local building codes.

    So Mr. Parro what about “We the people”. Your client is putting undue harm on the rest of the community by not signing. Your client is making our property values go down as well as your clients. Your client is making our rentals (which some need to pay their mortgages) not wanting to rent because the renter does not know if there is going to be a house or even a beach to enjoy. Why would they want to rent in Holgate. As a true ambulance chaser you are the only one that comes out of this hole. Your client loses property value without beach replenishment, we lose property value; your client pay your fees and now she loses all of her neighbors and any friends they may have had, and you walk away with your pockets filled with gold. I feel that this is more about your needs to make money and not your clients rights.

    Yes there are laws on the books to give just compensation for land use. As I see it with beach replenishment they can still use their house, their land, and the beach. If they need to see the view of the ocean they will have to get off their butts and walk to the dune or from the second floor and see the ocean. And if your client has a recerse living house the value of a view is a mute point. Sometime we all need to sacrifice a little to take care of others and not be selfish an only think of one self. I know you are only thinking of the money you stand to make but holding out and the longer it goes the better for you and no one else.

    You continue to say it your clients constitutional right, but what about our rights. Other ocean front property owners have signed up as they are in the thinking that this is the right thing for the community and it is like buying a insurance policy. We all spent a lot of money on flood insurance and might have to pay even a lot more. Beach Replenishment is like the primary insurance policy and the flood insurance is like the secordary policy just in case. I ask you now to be a big person and give your client the proper counsel to sign the easement for beach replenishment. You might think time is on your side, but if we don’t get beach replenishment now it could be to late if we have another Sandy. As it is we will have to go through one more Hurricane season. So once again tell your client to sign and buy that insurance policy because we could all be homeless.

  15. Holgate is a paradise that currently looks like ” water world”. Pictures do not begin to show the damage to so many homes and the heart break of so many people. It is inconceivable to me that in lieu of such a catastrophic event that fellow human beings are more concerned about ” following the money” then doing what’s right. The right thing is to sign the easements so we ALL can continue to appreciate such a beautiful place.

  16. PLEASE SIGN THE EASEMENT! You don’t live in a vacuum. Many, many folks and their homes/families are at stake. Do the right thing, please. It matters.

  17. As has been said so many times before, since Sandy and without beach replenishment, oceanfronts are basically worthless. Replenishment is the ONLY way to begin to regain value. It’s that simple. Let’s face it, beachfront owners have been gambling for years and they lost. They have lost enormous amounts of $$$ in property value, a portion of which may never be recovered, even with replenishment. The only way to begin to recover whatever those properties will eventually be worth is to get those beaches and dunes in shape. Would any of us purchase any of the beach front properties in their current condition without a reasonable guarantee of protection ? Of course not. The clock is ticking. So wake up holdout and do the right thing. You’ve cost the residents millions. Don’t let it happen again. SIGN THE EASEMENT NOW and get those beaches and dunes in place before the next big one.

  18. For some of us, it may be hard to understand why Mr. Porro would devote himself to the cause of people who are so obviously putting their selfish needs above those of the community. But there are others among us who, having a little background knowledge of his past, understand exactly where he’s coming from. Think about it. If both your parents were white-collar criminals who served jail terms for fraud and tax evasion, wouldn’t you be more likely to rally to the cause of other rich people who wanted to take from the community instead of protecting it? Wouldn’t it be really important to you to defend people like that? Just google “Porro duo of deceit” and it will all make more sense. This is an especially meaningful line from the USA Today article from April 18, 2005: “Kenneth Porro, one of Al Porro’s three sons, insists his father didn’t intend to commit any crimes. To that, Al Porro sighs with exasperation. “Every guy in prison says he didn’t have criminal intent,” Porro says. “It isn’t who’s right and who’s wrong; it’s what can be learned from this.” To most people, it looks like Ken Porro is just trying to make tons of money by spinning an anti-civic stance into in a false “civil rights” issue. And he is doing that. But he also clearly has a more personal mission at stake, and you can’t expect someone like that to be reasonable or clear-headed.

  19. Interesting article Mark. There is one pasage in the article that is particularly poignant:

    “The danger, he says, arrives once a person begins accumulating outsized power and wealth. What’s often lost, he says, are humility and sound judgment.”

    Sounds like the situation we are facing with the lone holdout in Holgate.

  20. Clearly Mr. Porro has been retained on contingency and is looking out for the greater good – that is, HIS greater good, not the residents of Holgate who will surely suffer again when the next seemingly annual “100 Year Storm” strikes the Jersey Coastline. Say what you will, those areas on LBI and otehr areas in NJ where the dunes were properly constructed and maintained suffered the least collateral damage — how much “value” does one place on a view of utter destruction since that’s the view that the beach front “holdouts” have if they look to their due-west. It’s a nice view looking east, but turn 180 degrees and see the devastation to which their holding out has surely contributed. How much “more” rent will these hoeowner, make that THIS single homeowner command this summer with that view?

  21. Mr. Porro, I feel bad for the clients you represent. You give them advice to hold out…you tell them they can get more from the township. But it’s sad that they will in the end, if the replenishment does not happen, they will end up with nothing of value. The argument that home values will go down is incorrect. The 1962 storm devastated this island, why, because there were no dunes. The waves had nothing to hold them back. I remember the dunes being put in, the stone jetties being put in. Why do all that…because it works. It was done to protect the island, it’s people and their property. People complained when the original dunes where put in. The same argument you are making now. But did their home values go down, no. Home prices have sky rocketed. And they will again after the dune replenishment. But I can guarantee they will go down without it. Who would want to buy a home knowing the next storm will wash it away! Why because now we have even less protection than prior to Sandy.
    So as I said, I feel bad for your clients who listen to your advice. They have already lost so much, because the replenishment was not done prior to Superstorm Sandy and without the replenishment they will only loose what little value remains.

  22. After raising a couple of kids and getting them through college we decided to go into more debt, purchasing a 1972 Liberty mobile home at the LBI Trailer Park. We didn’t realize one could pack so much fun into summers, by just being here anytime you wanted, which was every weekend possible. After 2 short years Sandy showed up, and the 1972 Liberty was no more, but the place is magical, so we put off retirement a little longer and purchased another trailer in a neighoring park. Mr. Porro, hopefully you will suggest to your client that by signng the easement, many will enjoy the magic of Holgate for years to come.

  23. The holdout is clearly out of touch. They must be aware of the severity of the situation by now, so it must be a total lack of compassion and lack of care for their own property, let along any others. Every single nor’easter, every single gust of wind, every single high tide has made me anxious since the storm. I am anxious for my house, anxious for my parents, anxious for my neighbors. I wish I knew how to make this woman, and the others like her, realize that there is a lot more at stake here then their dang views. And unfortunately, they think they are protecting their property values, but their inaction is actually making theirs, and everybody else’s, property values drop.

  24. Shame on Ken Porro….we are almost in the month of march and if the last easement is signed , we may hopefully have some type of beach replenishment in Holgate in time for the next hurricane season in August. Mr.Porro is misguiding his clients while destroying communities. If you are reading this post, you should rewatch the video embedded in this article, in the opening scene there is a yellow home on its side, That is the original home of one of the holdouts that moved to a beachfront home up the block from their original home that Mr. Porro represents…that is how vulnerable ALL of the homes in holgate are without beach replenishment. SHAME on you Ken Porro for encouraging your client to be the ONLY holdout putting a whole community in jeopardy…

  25. IAccording to this report, Ken Porro “says his clients aren’t against dune projects, they just want to be fairly compensated.” Fair compensation is based on the home’s value. So to me, the following would represent fair compensation:
    1. Appraise the value of the home with no dune, and an unblocked ocean view. Call that X.
    2. Appraise the value of the home with the dune, but an obstructed ocean view. Call that Y.
    The township pays the homeowners 25% of X, and the homeowners pay the township 25% of Y. The difference is fair compensation.
    The logic: if the dunes lower the value of the home, then the township owes the homeowner. But if the dunes raise the value of the home, then the homeowner owes the township. Pretty simple math.

      • Like everyone else in Holgate. With sand, and muck, and broken glass, and bits of siding, and splattered photos, and shattered dreams. You’ve had to carry those things in your pockets, Yanni. I think it’s his turn now.

        • Just pay her 300,000 and she’ll sign. That’s not a lot to protect Holgate’s rateables. Kaufman cannot be forced to sign; she is standing on that principle. Mayor Mancini won’t pay a penny to holdouts; he is standing on principle. Just like our divided Congress. Let ‘s work out a compromise for the good of all.

  26. Mr Parro, You mention that some of the holdouts are not wealthy people and need the income to support the property. How are they going to rent the property if there are no dunes to protect the property against the next big storm. You can not rent a property that is sitting in the ocean or a block away from its foundation.

    You further mention that taking away their view lowers their property value. What is the value of the human lives that are at risk without the dunes. If the next storm hits in mid August, can you give me the dollar value of the missing dunes in front of your clients homes compared to the hundreds of people that live behind that property? In super storm Sandy 125 people in the United States died . That includes 60 in New York — 48 of them in New York City — 34 in New Jersey and 16 in Pennsylvania. Think of what these numbers would have been if this storm hit at peek season.

  27. An Open Letter To Marilyn “bunny” Kaufman + Ken Porro (her lawyer)

    I am a member of the Holgate Taxpayer’s Association, as well as an owner of beach front property. I am sure you are receiving many letters from other members. Like the other members who will be writing to you, I feel it was my duty and obligation to do so, just as I felt it was my duty and obligation to my property, as well as that of all the other Holgate residents, to sign over my easement rights, which I did when asked, because we very CAREFULLY read the information supplied which described exactly what signing over our rights entailed. Once we had finished reading all the materials we realized it was it was to the benefit of all to sign (including ourselves) and to the detriment of all (including ourselves) not to sign. And, this was before Hurricane Sandy occurred. Now that we have experienced the devastation brought about by Hurricane Sandy I no longer feel it is just a duty and obligation but a NECESSITY to sign over ones easement rights.
    As a beachfront homeowner, I love my beautiful views (which we have), and the refreshing sea breezes, which we enjoy as well. I also recognize that sometimes the welfare and considerations of others have to come before my pleasures, and that these considerations need to take priority.
    If you read the conditions the signing over of your easement for the purpose of Beach Replenishment carefully you would realize and I quote Mr. Bill Hutson, Trustee of the Holgate Taxpayers Association,
    “A ‘Perpetual Easement’ in this case is not FOREVER. It is only the lifetime of this Beach Replenishment project, which is 50 years. Once the Beach Replenishment project is done, the Army Corps of Engineers will return every 7 years to re-nourish that beach. Also if there is hurricane damage, as there was during Hurricane Sandy, they will return and refix the beach (as is the case of Harvey Cedars, Surf City and the parts of Long Beach Township that have been replenished).
    An easement for the Beach Replenishment does not affect the selling or buying price of property.”
    What you do have to realize is that by not signing the easement, as soon as possible, it will absolutely affect the property values, which already have dropped significantly. And that is only if you still will have property to value, which is also something to consider!!
    Therefore, any person who has any sense of reason and understanding of the impact on the community, and any conscience about the better good of the community of Holgate and its future, cannot have any justifiable reason for not signing the easement.
    The only deductions that can be made for not signing the easement is the desires of pure greed, total inconsideration of the better good of the community of Holgate, its residents and properties. Suffice it to say it is unfathomable to me, how anyone can be so totally self absorbed in their pure greed that they put that before any sense of responsibility to others. I cannot imagine being so devoid of any integrity whatsoever that a person would jeopardize the welfare of an entire community, people and property, at the risk of damage and destruction to all, including themselves, out of pure greed, or lack of any personal integrity and honor.
    There is no other “nice” way to word this. You are holding a whole community hostage by your senseless lack of character and reason. The irony is, sooner or later, you will have to sign…
    That is if there is any property that exists to sign an easement for… You will not be protected or any more secure than any of us in the community. There lies the rub, how you can be so shortsighted to not realize the ramifications of your lack of action!!!!

    As you comfortably rest your backside in your gated community in Naples, Florida, in one of your 3 properties, without any care for the consideration and welfare of others, you hold a whole community as hostage and jeopardize the safety, welfare and economic stability of the whole community with your only interest – pure greed. Understand that the “substantial compensation” that you are demanding as the ransom to signing the easement for beach replenishment would be coming directly from the pockets of your Holgate neighbors who have already had significant financial losses from the damages caused by Sandy.
    We have heard about the existence of consciousless beings before, ( e. g.Madoff, Hitler) but being exposed to it first hand is a horrifying experience.
    You are a despicable excuse for humanity.

    I know you will probably not read this letter, or any of the others you receive, as in my head I have already discerned you are totally devoid of any moral obligation, let alone admirable human qualities, but if there is a glimmer of a hope that someone can awaken that in you it was worth the effort.
    In hopes this has some impact,
    A very disappointed, frustrated and ANGRY Holgate Taxpayer

  28. I do not have much to add to all of the very logical, rational and economic arguments presented in the comments above that, given the destructtion caused by Sandy in Holgate, the dune replenishment project will not lower the value of the property, but in fact is necessary to restore them to their prestorm values. And eventually, as has happened with prior storms, due to the enhanced storm protection, will eventually continue to appreciate. The problem is that when you are dealing amoral, unethical individuals who simply do not care about working for the greater good of the community, logic simply does not work.

    That said, hoping that deep down there is some microcosm of human and emotional decency in our remainig holdout, I thought I might try to get through on a personal appeal.

    As seen graphically in the first scenes of the video, I am the owner of the OZ house in Holgate, a term of endearment given by the Long Beach Townhship police, that was completely blown off its pilings, turned sideways, eventually landing up against my neighbor’s house. As described by Ken Porro, neither my neighbor (a permanent resident) nor I are wealthy. Luckily though, it appears that we may be in a position to rebuild, however I can not ay the same for my neighbor, who is currently trying to figure out how he will survive this crisis. Ironically, not only are we directly across the street from the remaining holdout, Marilyn (Bunny) Kaufman, but prior to moving to her oceanfront house, she owned my house! So, Bunny, how would you feel if you still owned my house? How would you expect your oceanfront neighbors to behave, given your total loss? I know how I would behave. Maybe I am one of the naive ones, but I would have signed the easement long ago, because I know how important all the family memories, rental income, etc. that having a home in Holgate mean to everyone, not just me. So, please, even if you do it in memory of all the good times that you had in your old house, or out of pity for those who have experienced catastrophic and/or irrecoverable damage, sign the easement. I have no doubt that if you do, in the long run, everyone will win, except for poor Ken Porro.

    Thank you for your consideration.

  29. As others have said, the attorneys are the winners here and it’s THEIR pure greed that has thwarted our progress regarding this issue! It’s tough to respect the profession…it’s the ‘one bad apple’…

  30. The perfect solution:
    Somebody videotape Bunny’s and Mr. Porro’s faces as Holgate snakes its 25-ft dune IN FRONT of Bunny’s house to protect her rear ocean view, leaving her home exactly as currently exists. You want the ocean and zero protection B&P? You got it. Hell I’d chip in to re-align and pave a 200-ft stretch of Long Beach Blvd, would you? That’d be one helluva viral Youtube video….

  31. The attorney, Mr. Porro, must know that the property value is only realized if there is reliable dune protection to insure the safety of the home and the surrounding homes. It seems to me the short sightedness of the attorney (Mr.Porro) and his client not only is a detriment to the community but to his client a well. If without the easement the dune project cannot proceed all the properties are at risk including the clients. Flood insurance costs alone could soar and challenge any perceived value. It is a shame that one selfcentered individual can effect the values, safety and enviornment of a whole community.Could GREED really be the motivation? How sad.

  32. As a summer resident whose (non-beachfront) home was destroyed by Sandy, I cannot understand why a beachfront homeowner would not sign the easement. The mayor has worked diligently to address the concerns of these owners, while Ken Porro only seems to be working diligently to ensure the biggest payout for himself. He is making money, while the property values of these beachfront homeowners continues to decline. And as word gets out who they are, they may find they are no longer welcome in their community. That’s a loss that can not be quantified monetarily. A man with the ethics of Ken Porro, is not working for the benefit of his clients – he is working only for his own benefit. As to those homeowners who “are not wealthy, and depend on rental incomes to support the the property”, how many of those homeowners is Porro representing? Certainly not the lone holdout in Holgate. Actually, Ken Porro is not representing anyone – he is only using them for his own financial gain.

  33. By the way. An article written in the Asbury Park Press clearly shows Bunny Kaufman and her son with an inurance adjuster viewing the damage to their home the day Holgate residents were allowed back. I believe 11/9.

  34. Dear Mr. Porro, I hate to contradict your statement that your clients are not wealthy people, but the fact is that the one remaining holdout in Holgate (who is your client), is not a poor person struggling to pay the mortgage with rental income. Have you and your client stood on the beach in front of her house looking towards the street? Then you have seen the devastation of the homes of the people who live beyond your clients home. Look left and right as well. These people are all affected by your clients inaction due to your counsel of waiting for a payday. If they wait too much longer, there will not be a house to rent out, to view the ocean or enjoy with her family. I hope and pray daily that you and your clients develop a social conscious, empathy for her neighbors in Holgate, and sympathy for those who lost their only home, their entire life’s work (not their summer rental home) and sign the easement before it is too late!

  35. Just one last comment. What really makes me sad is that all of our pleas will be ignored by the person that we need to save our slice of paradise. If she really cared, we would not be talking about this 4 months after Sandy.
    It would be done. :( (

  36. Update! It has been confirmed that the last holdout in holgate has fired Ken Porro and has sought out different legal council. To the best of my knowledge this is the SECOND Holgate homeowner to have fired Kennith Porro in the past 2 months!!! While the last remaining holdout has not yet signed the easement I think we can see a trend that Porro and his clients’ might have differing views when it comes to what their best interest is. I am hopeful that the last holdout and their legal representation cam come to some sort of agreement with the town. Good-bye Ken….

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Island Contractors Hear Post-Sandy Building Rule Changes

Property Owners Must Acknowledge ‘Risk’ of Rules Changing Again

If you see a house sitting on the road right-of-way for a few days in the off-season while pilings are installed to raise it, it will be part of the ongoing post-Sandy rebuild.

That allowance comes by resolution in Long Beach Township, one of many recent construction rule changes outlined to builders at an annual contractors’ meeting held in town hall recently.

The room was full, evidence that rebuilding is not a cut-and-dried process – not when federal requirements have changed due to flood zone re-mapping, which the Federal Emergency Management Agency has not yet finished. In fact, homeowners must now sign an “Assumption of Risk Statement” before a building permit will be issued in Long Beach Township, zoning and construction code officials said.

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Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/news/us/after-superstorm-sandy-jersey-shore-open-for-business-689168/#ixzz2UPhVWWus

Tax relief proposed for victims of Hurricane Sandy

Federal authorities have released new versions of flood zone maps, which could bring relief to some property owners.

The draft maps were published Sunday for Atlantic, Ocean, Monmouth and Hudson Counties. Those are the areas that were hardest hit by Superstorm Sandy last year.

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