Beach Haven Borough Manager: Parking Petition Not Valid

By Eric Englund | Sep 11, 2019

Beach Haven — A Beach Haven resident’s quest to use a provision in the borough’s form of government to overhaul what he says is an ineffective parking ordinance has been ruled invalid.

John Harvey had said the the local government is organized under the Faulkner Act (the council/manager option), which went into effect in 2010. He said the Faulkner Act provides citizens the right of initiative and referendum in which proposed ordinances, such as a revised parking ordinance, can be introduced directly by the people at any time without action by the local governing body.

Harvey recently submitted a petition with 54 signatures, more than the 30 he said was required. He had hoped that once the petition was submitted, the council could vote to pass the requested ordinance, and if the council refused, it would then be submitted directly to the voters.

He said he wanted the borough to revert to the ordinance that was in effect prior to Superstorm Sandy in 2012.

“With the recent rash of large real estate developments, this parking ordinance is simply not effective, and serves to exacerbate an already saturated parking and traffic problem during peak season,” he had written. “It also increases the risk to pedestrian safety.”

But at the Monday night borough council meeting, Borough Manager Sherry Mason said parking laws fall under the jurisdiction of zoning ordinances.

“Those (zoning ordinances) cannot be changed through initiative and referendum,” said Mason.

She said there were also several procedural errors, but “they are all moot” because initiative and referendum did not apply.

Harvey could not be reached for comment by press time. E.E.

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