Margate citizens lived through the storm floods of 1938, 1944, 1963, 1991, and non-Hurricane , full moon Sandy in 2012.?? Their sturdy wooden seawall protected their town better than artificial sand dunes?and didn?t block views, cause stagnant water and bugs, or cost millions to replace every few years.??? While artificial piles of sands may be useful in places like Harvey Cedars on Long Beach Island, there are not needed in places like Margate, where wide beaches break most of the force of the waves.?? Margate knows dunes do nothing to stop flooding from the back bay.? That?s why Margate voters from million dollar ocean front homes to modest back street cottages voted 1,603 to 902 (nearly 2 to 1) against state program forcing them to build ugly, expensive, view-blocking, bug attracting artificial sand dunes last November.
Margate citizens also know that their flood insurance rates are the lowest in the state?because their sturdy wooden seawall protects the town better than dunes!
But instead of respecting the Constitution and governing ?with the consent of the governed?, Christie insulted and threatened the people of Margate.
Two weeks later, Christie had his stooge, NJ Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Director Bob Martin send this threatening letter to the elected officials of Margate.?? It reads in part:
?Both the project and the dunes are essential to the safety, health, and welfare of the citizens of Margate.?? Accordingly the State intends to proceed with the project as designed. . .
?Before the Army Corps can begin the construction work, the State, through the Department of Environmental Protection, must first provide the Army Corps with easements in Margate?s beachfront properties, both municipal and private.?? In Margate, however, there are still private property owners who are refusing to provide the easements and, to date, Margate has not provided any of the required municipal easements.
?The state would prefer to move forward in Margate with the cooperation and assistance of the municipality.??? However, the project will be completed in Margate regardless of whether Margate chooses to cooperate. . . as mandated by (Governor Christie?s) Executive Order 140.??? If Margate does not provide the municipal easements and work with the State to acquire the necessary easements from private property owners, the State will directly take the property interests, regazrdless of whether they are privately, quasi-municipality, or municipally owned. . .
?If your municipality would like to have a seat at the table in deciding how the beach will be used and managed in the future, now is the time to act.? Further delay is not an option.?? The State will proceed to take and then control the properties without your cooperation. . .
Bob Martin, Commissioner?
Would any public official have dared to send a letter to the elected representatives of free American citizens 50 years ago??? Isn?t this how dictators like Vladimir Putin talk to their people?
Does it bother you that in two generations, we are destroying our special land of liberty that took 400 years of work, struggle, and sacrifice to build??? Why won’t the state conduct an independent study as to whether wooden sea-walls work better than dunes??? Is it?pay-to-play politics, and billions of dollars of contracts for politically connected union contractors, architects, lawyers, etc??? And millions for the Wall Street banks that issue the bonds to borrow the money?
Seth Grossman, Executive Director
(Image fo DEP letter source -?http://athebeach.blogspot.com/2013/12/the-martin-letter.html)