Liberty and Sand Dunes in Margate


The overwhelming majority of Margate voters said in November?that they do not want to join the Absecon Island Dune Project (AISPP). ?Despite the clear local opposition to this project Governor Chris Christie is determined to force Margate to join the project. ? Beth Capriotti writes:

The big bully Goliath would be?Governor Chris Christie, who has stated publicly that it is his intention to build a dune the entire length of the Jersey shore ? despite the opposition of any individuals from whom the state would need easements and municipalities that have said no to the project.

He said those in opposition are ?knuckleheads? and that their opposition is ?bull??.


Margate is a unique community with an effective contiguous bulkhead and outfall system that not only worked during Sandy but worked well. Of the more than 900 work permits granted after the storm, only 2 were for homeowners on the beach block. The damage from Sandy in Margate was, in essence, entirely from bay flooding.

You?d hope a guy smart enough to be a governor would take the time to get the facts straight before spouting off inaccuracies. But the Bully in Chief, instead, has decreed that he intends to ignore the voice of a community, expressed through a legal and democratic vote to its elected officials, thereby forcing those officials to sign a contract to which their constituents have voiced resounding opposition.

Those engaged in the referendum question are re-doubling their efforts to get their local elected officials to represent the community’s will on this issue. ? However, it appears that the local Margate Commissioners are starting to cave to enormous pressure being applied by Governor Chris Christie and his administration, especially Commissioner Martin of the Department of Environmental Protection. ? Glenn Klotz blogs on his recent visit to a Margate Commission meeting:

?One thing has become very clear to me at this juncture is that those with the power in Margate ( Becker & Taube,) are NOT prepared to defend the decision of the voters if this comes down to a stand off with the State over the Beach Project issue. ( which it already has.) With that kind of publically declared attitude (one of appeasement and surrender ), no wonder the State is standing firm. What do they have to worry about, two of the town’s?officials?Mayor Becker and Commissioner Taube don’t seem to care if the voters said NO to the AISPP. The same two that called for a public vote no less. Instead, all that I heard were reasons why we should be honored that the busy ?Commissioner of the NJDEP ( Commissioner Martin) ?even bothered responding to us, as if we’re some lowly friggin peasants. ?Pathetic.


The State it appears is preparing to shove the Project down Margate’s throat and then to add insult to injury send us the bill afterwards.

Liberty and Prosperity’s eight liberty principle is “Have frequent referendums (public votes) on issues of public importance.” ?We applaud Margate for putting the question of joining the dune project to a public vote. ? It is now incumbent on the citizens of Margate to use the results of that referendum to hold their Commissioners accountable. ? It is absolutely clear where the voters of Margate stand on this issue. ? The work continues to convince Margate City Commissioners to stand with the will of their people against an intrusive state government.

  • Seth Grossman

    Seth Grossman is executive director of Liberty And Prosperity, which he co-founded in 2003. It promotes American liberty and limited constitutional government through weekly radio and in-person discussions, its website, email newsletters and various events. Seth Grossman is also a general practice lawyer.

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