The Jersey Shore Chapter signed-on to a letter urging Senator Sarlo and the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee to consider the Public Access Bill (S1074) as soon as possible. The bill is essential for protecting our public access.

Read the full letter below:

 

“February 7, 2018

Senator Paul Sarlo, Chairman, Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee

Dear Chairman Sarlo,

The broad and diverse coalition of coastal interests below respectfully request you post Senate Bill 1074 (Smith, Bateman) for consideration by your committee as soon as possible.

This legislation, unanimously approved and released by the Senate Environment Committee on February 5, 2018 would strengthen the protection of the public trust doctrine and public access to tidal waters and shorelines throughout the state. It would address many long-standing problems which have denied
the public’s rights along the water’s edge, undercut the role public access to the water can play in promoting economic and community revitalization and allowed for the continuation of conflicts between the public users of the state’s waters and private and government interests.

There is no public open space or resource as large and varied as the state’s tidal waterfronts and waters. The rights of the public here are unique and dominant. Despite this, there are well recognized policy and legal reasons to strengthen available tools on public access and protecting the public trust doctrine.

• Think about the real face of shore tourism – too often a family of 5 visting the shore finds itself desperately seeking parking, then hauling all their beach gear a half a mile or
more to the beach, and often finding no restroom for the little one who “really has to go”!
• Waterfront walkways and parks are critical to providing long-denied access to our rivers and bays in urban communities and spurring economic investment
• Quality public access is proving to be a keystone element of effective redevelopment and revitalization
• There continue to be conflicts with municipalities, developers, homeowners and businesses about access to the Public Trust which belongs to all New Jerseyans –
keeping fishermen, divers, beachcombers and families from the tidal shorelines they have a right to use.

Our organizations have worked extensively with the sponsors and other interests to craft a bill which will provide significant and effective responses to these and other pressing issues. Please post this bill for consideration.”

 

The following organizations also signed the letter:

American Littoral Society, NY/NJ Baykeeper, Hudson River Waterfront Conservancy, Bayshore Regional Watershed Council, Citizen’s Rights to Access Beaches (CRAB), Hudson River Fisherman’s Association, Recreational Fishing Alliance, Friends of Liberty State Park, Berkeley Striper Club, Stripers OnLine, Shark River Surf Anglers, New Jersey Outdoor Alliance, Jersey Coast Anglers Association, New Jersey League of Conservation Voters, City of Hoboken, NJ Beach Buggy Association