Dune Replenishment Case Settled, So State Gives Green Light To Acquire Remaining Easements
Today we may have learned why there has not been any noticeable progress in the government’s acquisition of approximately 1,000 dune easements in several municipalities on the Jersey Shore. This afternoon, a settlement was reported between the Borough of Harvey Cedars and Mr. and Mrs. Karan, which resulted in the ruling this summer from the NJ Supreme Court holding that the benefits provided to a property can be considered as an offset to damages which are caused to a property by a partial taking. The settlement was reported to be $1, although it is unclear whether any other, non-monetary benefits may have also been provided. In any event, it appears that the Karans may have given in to the political and peer pressure and ridicule which had been thrust upon them, and upon other beachfront property owners, in the past year.
In addition to the settlement, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed an Executive Order today centralizing the acquisitions of the remaining needed easements. According to the Order, it appears that they may be handled by the NJ Attorney General’s office, rather than continuing the past practice of having each municipality be responsible for acquiring the needed private property rights within its own borders. We’ll see how it develops, and expect that some action will commence soon.
Here are links to the relevant documents and events:
We will let you know once we hear of any developments or new news on this front.
- Fight over dunes sets neighbor against neighbor (staradvertiser.com)
- Recovery from Superstorm Sandy ignites fight over dunes (usatoday.com)
- Dispute over public access to private Harpswell beach ramps up (bangordailynews.com)
- Jersey Shore Homeowners Being Shamed For Blocking Dune Construction (newyork.cbslocal.com)