Unanswered Questions

Jan 08, 2020

To the Editor:

As a recent retiree who plans to make Beach Haven my permanent residence, I have several questions about the proposed Morrison’s hotel project before I commit my future tax payments to my beautiful town, which is slowly disappearing.

• Before we consider erecting a 102-room waterfront hotel/restaurant/rooftop bar/vacation spa in an already congested area of the town, shouldn’t we have some solution in the works for the failing drainage systems throughout the town? One only has to look at the many streets throughout Beach Haven (in front of the arcade at Fantasy Island, Hand Store, Berkeley Avenue during a moderate rainfall, and any high tide on many other streets too numerous to mention) to realize a problem exists. Or are we all resigned to the fact that we live on a barrier island being slowly reclaimed by the sea (Tuckers Island repeat)?

Have our list of priorities on fixing our existing infrastructure been totally abandoned? Parking is already impossible in many parts of town regardless if it’s the weekend or not. Bypassing local merchants to go outside Beach Haven to other parts of LBI to buy ice cream, groceries (Acme vs. Murphy’s, CVS vs. Kapler’s) is one work-around, but you get my point. Circling the block several times in summertime traffic to find an available parking spot is not anyone’s idea of a good time. What happens when we add the Morrison’s crowd to the mix?

I believe the borough has an engineering department that has the responsibility of reviewing plans and blueprints on proposed projects before approval is granted. My point here is if the Victoria Rose project was designed as part of the “beautification of Beach Haven initiative,” it has had the opposite effect.

Are we watching the results of litigation the town of Ship Bottom has entered into with the same developer of the Morrison’s project? Why in the world would we want to enter into a contract with a developer who is being litigated against by a “sister” town on LBI regarding similar projects?

What happens to all the marina boats that are dry docked at Morrison’s during the off-season? It seems to me, from the response given at the Dec. 30 Beach Haven council meeting, this issue is still an open one.

It is my understanding from the Dec. 30 council meeting that Beach Haven is currently $7-plus million in debt. I certainly do not profess to fully understand the mechanisms of running a municipality, but the primary reason I purchased a home here on LBI was specifically to be near the beach. Have the mayor and council members recently taken a walk to the beaches in Beach Haven beginning at Berkeley Avenue and heading south to Holgate? The beach has been eroding to the point that it will be hard to find a spot for your chair and umbrella this coming season. Since I don’t believe I’m the only resident of Beach Haven who is here for the beach, shouldn’t its replenishment be afforded some priority?

One of the main questions at the Dec. 30 council meeting was “What is Plan B?” Why are the mayor and council reluctant to discuss the particulars of the alternative plan that has already been designed and labeled Plan B?

In conclusion, Mr. Harvey has presented a specific list of questions with respect to this project to the mayor and council on several occasions and again at the Dec. 30 meeting. These questions deserve answers on behalf of the taxpayers of Beach Haven. Why is there a reluctance to do so?

Bill Casey

Beach Haven



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