2007 GSA Denver Annual Meeting (28–31 October 2007)
Paper No. 33-3
Presentation Time: 2:10 PM-2:30 PM

HURRICANES, NORTHEASTERS AND SEA LEVEL RISE ALONG LONG BEACH TOWNSHIP, NJ: COMPLICATIONS FROM A CENTURY OF HOME RULE

HALSEY, Susan D., Admiral Coastal Consulting, Pine Beach, NJ 08741, SDHalsey@aol.com

New Jersey is known as a strong “home rule” state. That is, the local municipalities have the power to pass ordinances, zoning and other planning tools to govern their own municipalities, unless Federal and State laws supersede on a statewide basis. Thus, coastal communities have from a very early time, set about to design their particular communities “their way” –until statewide building codes were adopted as well as the Federal Coastal Zone Management Act negotiated in the late 1970's, the Wetlands Act and FEMA regulations in the same general timeframe. Most of these regulations and programs came into being as a result of the devastating March, 1962 storm (a Class 5 northeaster: Halsey, 1986). Long Beach Township (LBT), one of six municipalities on Long Beach Island, has a myriad of sections, being the land left after the five self-governing boroughs incorporated themselves. The Brant Beach section of LBT, located south of the mid-point of the island, deserves our attention due to its perpetual state of erosion, development right on the beach, and special ordinances that ruled that east of the ocean road, the land there was not a dune. Home rule has been enhanced by a particular practice: even now, local politicians in NJ can hold multiple state offices: a mayor can also be a County Freeholder, a State Assembly person, or Senator—all three if elected. And NJ has often had strong ties to Washington. Thus, political power can be quite concentrated, and through the years this has caused very interesting scenarios and complications when any coastal regulations and funding levels are debated in the State Legislature. The coastal problems of the Brant Beach section will be discussed in light of these complications.

2007 GSA Denver Annual Meeting (28–31 October 2007)
General Information for this Meeting
Session No. 33
Identifying America’s Most Vulnerable Oceanfront Communities: A Geological Perspective
Colorado Convention Center: 708/710/712
1:30 PM-5:30 PM, Sunday, 28 October 2007

Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 39, No. 6, p. 95

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