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By Paul Goldfinger,  Editor@ Blogfinger.

It seems that those who are investing in the current North End Redevelopment Plan, including the CMA,  finally got fed up with 11 years of dithering.  Recall that in 2008 they persuaded the Township to declare the North End to be “an area in need of redevelopment.”

But such areas  are supposed to help  (public welfare)  down-and-out properties to recover, usually in down-and-out towns or cities. This has never described Ocean Grove.

No objective observer could consider this OG North End Redevelopment Plan to be anything but private welfare for a group of people and groups.  (WAVE and CMA; now known as OGNED and CMA.)

The Township inappropriately agreed to this charade and they recently recognized, due to the delays, that this was in fact “an area in need of attorneys.”

So fast forward through years of no-go.  In 2018 the Township used public money to pay for a private redevelopment lawyer who would guaranty an agreement that would legally be unassailable, would plug all holes, and would make the investors rich.

Whether it would be good for the town was an  irrelevant after-thought.

The lawyer saw to it that the Township would promise that OGNED would become the only Redeveloper, and that process is currently underway.  Heading this process is William Gannon, III, Esq. He is a private citizen but somehow he controls the controls at the Committee.

Why the Township went on with this subterfuge for 11 years is unknown since the NERP is, despite OGNED’s assertion, not good for the town of Ocean Grove.  It will produce more congestion, ugliness, and parking problems. Grovers like to take a deep breath and see the Ocean.

This brings us to the Trojan horse.  On the November 26, 2018  Township Committee Consent Agenda was Res 18-395.

“A consent agenda is a board meeting practice that groups routine business and reports into one agenda item.”    It is used to streamline items like ordering toilet paper for the Mother Ship. Its purpose is to approve items quickly and with little notice.   The list on November 26. 2018, consisted of 10 mundane items including awarding an animal control contract among other dopey orders of business.

However, Resolution #18 -395 is also listed, and that item is not mundane at all—it is of major importance related to the North End Redevelopment Plan.   It “authorized the execution of a Conditional Designation and Interim Cost Agreement with OG North End Development, LLC”  including provisions for OGNED to pay money to Neptune to defray costs incurred in negotiating a Redevelopment Agreement.

But there were also exhibits and attachments which were not shared with the citizens in attendance, and those papers are complex legal documents.

Those documents, prepared by the special lawyer, covered a huge buffet of topics ranging from the details of the new plan, to lease arrangements, to flexibility in turning the hotel into condos, dropping the CMA from its role as redeveloper, opening a swimming pool and health club, and even doing the project in stages.  And there were many other topics listed and not mentioned or discussed.

The lawyer created documents  (exhibits and attachments)  that closed every possible loophole and offered  assurances and variations for many items including how many residential units might be built.  Clearly, this was the heart and soul of the NERP, and it was being slipped under the door for approval by our elected officials without any public discussion and debate.

The Committee did not explain that this consent agenda item was really a Trojan Horse designed to hide and contain  all sorts of project details, allowing it to sneak inside the people’s house past the public’s filter.  Everyone on the Committee signed off on this blank check.

We suspect that Mr. Gannon’s appearance at the HOA is to use the meeting to let him charm the crowd and then claim that the people approved.  But the HOA by far does not represent the citizens of Ocean Grove.  They themselves are complicit in  this terrible North End Plan which, since 2008, is the only official plan, but somehow now is being exchanged for another plan without appropriate procedures.

Unfortunately, the Trojan horse enabled the Greeks to defeat Troy, and now, here, these modern day tricksters will get their way.  Just ask Joey, owner of Odyssey on Main, how that story worked out.

BAN THE PLAN: the only result that will keep our historic residential town from becoming Asbury Park South. Demand that the Neptune Committee cancel these agreements.

LEON REDBONE:

 

 

 

 

North End Area in Need of Redevelopment Blogfinger photo ©

 

By Jack Bredin, Ocean Grove resident.

June 17, 2019.

 

In 2018, the Township Committee:

a. Withdrew the 2008 (10 year old) public North End Redevelopment Plan (NERP) prepared by the Neptune Planning Board for the Township Committee.

b. Withdrew the title of “Co-Redevelopers” from both the OGCMA and WAVE.

c. Approved a 2011 private plan prepared by Shore Point Architecture for WAVE that the HOA took credit for negotiating with the CMA.  However, the Township is processing it as if it were a public plan.

That plan is now the OGNED plan that includes the Pavilion building in one section of resolution 18-395, but does not include the Pavilion in another section of the same resolution (Attachment A, dated 11-26-2018.)

d.  OGNED is now designated as the exclusive Conditional Redeveloper.  But it will become the Redeveloper when a Redevelopers Agreement is signed with the Township.

In 2019: The Township Business Administrator reported, “All issues regarding the OGNED plan have been worked out,” and a Redevelopers Agreement is ready to be signed.

It is clear that the Township Committee has already approved the private development plan prepared by WAVE for OGNED.

The next step is off to the Planning Board, and they will decide if the new OGNED plan is the same plan they prepared with Planning Consultants T&M Associates for the Township Committee in 2008.

Of course, it is not the same plan, but they will say “it is,” or they will be replaced

What is the Ocean Grove Homeowners Association’s role in all of this?

With a favorable response at the June 22 meeting of the HOA, the Township Committee can say, “The Home Owners of Ocean Grove support the high density WAVE/OGNED plan.”  After all, they supported the first 2008 plan and took credit for negotiating the new plan.

But to make the record clear on this matter, the Homeowners Association at their upcoming meeting should entertain a Motion of the Membership that they approve or do not approve the OGNED plan for the North End.

As to the HPC, they only make a recommendation, but the HOA represents the “conscience of the community of Ocean Grove” as well as the “will” of the people.

Is there any hope for Ocean Grove?

 

Editor’s note: HOA members—be sure to demand a vote as to whether the group wants to support the plan presented to them by Mr. Gannon.

That vote should only take place after all audience questions are answered and discussed.

And make sure that the individual who is presenting the plan is giving you confidence that he can be trusted to do the right thing  for the residential and historic town of Ocean Grove.

Paul Goldfinger,  Editor  Blogfinger.net.

BAN THE PLAN!

 

THE PLATTERS.   Perhaps the HOA leadership will say they’re sorry for supporting the Township on this:

 

 

 

Boys with toy guns are no longer politically correct on our beach. Click on the word Blogfinger below this sentence.

Blogfinger

fig 22   By Paul Goldfinger,  Editor @Blogfinger.

Around 1912 Teddy Roosevelt was a hero in Ocean Grove. He had visited the Grove in 1899 and 1905.  “He epitomized the ideal of muscular Christianity….someone who became a skilled leader and protector of the nation.”  *  As President he spoke in the Great Auditorium, and he appeared on parade with his Rough Riders on the Ocean Pathway.

There was a major youth movement in the Grove back then including a militaristic version for boys called the Young Rough Riders. Boys in the Grove received militaristic training from the age of eight.

Regarding the photograph above, Troy Messenger *said, “A boy innocently playing soldier on the beach actually represented an important performance of gender identity within the perfectionism of Ocean Grove.”

Many of those boys went on to serve in the US Army during WW I.

* From Troy Messenger’s book “Holy Leisure: Recreation and…

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This photograph is from 2015 when I came upon members of the Liquid Church. So, they are back in 2019—nothing new under the sun. Click on “Blogfinger” beneath this sentence

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Sunday owning at the corner of Heck and Benson. Paul Goldfinger photo. © Sunday morning at the corner of Heck and Benson. The shirt says, “Fun.”   Paul Goldfinger photo. ©  May 31, 2015. Ocean Grove, NJ.  Blogfinger.net

The official program booklet of the OGCMA mentions nothing special for Sunday, May 31, but there is something special going on.  Driving around town this morning there are guides in the streets and at key corners wearing colorful T shirts and leis. They seem to be mostly young happy people who are carrying white arrows to direct visitors to shuttle buses and to the Great Auditorium for an 11:00 am church service.

The Liquid Church is based at 4 campuses in New Jersey and it offers a Christian message at their service this morning which includes live music and a sermon by their founder Pastor Tim. After the service they are holding a picnic on the Pathway and then, later, baptisms on the beach.

We spoke…

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Moe Demby. OG portrait. Blogfinger.net. ©

 

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN  “Erie Canal”  from the Seeger Sessions

 

"Two Boys" Long Beach Island. By Paul Goldfinger

“Two Boys” Long Beach Island. By Paul Goldfinger

 

EVA CASSIDY:

BlackWhite Gallery.

“Michael” by Paul Goldfinger. ©   This image appeared in a national magazine, “Hospital Physician.” It was taken in Mt. Sinai Hospital, NYC.

 

ALISON BALSOM.   Scottish Ensemble:   “Oboe Concerto in C Minor: II. Adagio”

 

 

 

Disease was once thought to be due to sin. We now know more,  but not enough.

Edited and reprinted from a prior edition of Blogfinger.

By Paul Goldfinger, MD, FACC

Most people have high hopes when they go to a doctor with a problem.  They want to believe that their physician will do some tests, find out what’s wrong, and then fix the situation. That is usually what happens. However, doctors sometimes do not recognize their own limitations. They may not  like to admit to themselves or to  patients that they do not know what’s wrong and what to do. The fact is that there is much that doctors do not know and there is much that they do which is unproven.

Sometimes a physician will suggest a second opinion. That is always a good idea, but the patient should go to someone who is a known authority in the field, even if it means a trip into New York or Philadelphia. Seeing a real expert may help put a halt to the doctor-shopping.  But what happens when no doctor knows the answer no matter how many you consult?  What happens when a situation hits the wall of the unknown?

There is a parallel universe where people reside with persistent symptoms despite the best efforts of doctors.  I know someone who has chronic vertigo. He has seen multiple specialists in New York City and has had every possible test for this condition. No diagnosis or effective  treatment has been found. The patient is still dizzy; he has been seen by professors without answers as well as charlatans who waste his time and money. He makes the best of it, but he keeps looking for another doctor who might help. He scours the internet for solutions.

Most everybody has something physical that bothers them, and if there is no definite diagnosis,  they try to get by, one way or another.   Some get conventional care from their doctors, while others resort to alternative therapies and OTC medications.  Many simply accept their fate and lead their lives without further tinkering by the medical establishment. But the ones who keep bouncing around from doctor to doctor, without diagnostic or therapeutic success,  are the ones who need the most guidance from the medical profession.

Physicians sometimes need to stop the snowballing of tests and opinions. Stopping means to admit that the patient’s problem cannot be solved, so the doctor needs to shift gears and focus on attentive and supportive symptom relief. It’s difficult to judge when that time has come. It has to be a decision made by the doctor and his patient. But once the decision is made, the physician  should continue to follow the patient, because you never know when an answer might appear.

This, not condos, is what Ocean Grove historic looks like.  Paul Goldfinger photo ©

 

Paul Goldfinger, Editor@Blogfinger.net

From the Master Plan  (2011)  for Neptune’s Ocean Grove Historic District:

“The Plan proposes to redevelop the site into a new mixed-use community with a hotel and combination of single-family residential and commercial uses including public spaces and amenities.

 

“The decline of the hotels and rooming houses that previously provided summer lodging gave rise to conversion to multi-family residential uses or provided additional rooming and boarding uses for the indigent. These changes had deleterious effects on Ocean Grove.

“Ordinance changes prohibiting similar conversions to multi-family use have limited additional deterioration and facilitated a renaissance of investment for single family housing, bed and breakfasts and historic hotels.”

 

On the other hand, the North End Redevelopment Plan calls for residences, but most of them are “multi-family residential uses  (condos).”

Do you suppose that the designers of the NERP wanted to retain single family housing?   If they cared about the future of the historic district, they should not have manipulated the zoning at the North End to allow many condominiums.

One has to question their motives and keep that in mind when you listen to the presentation on June 22 from a man who pioneered the NERP in 2008.

 

NAOMI AND HER HANDSOME DEVILS:   “If I Could Be With You One Hour Tonight.”

 

Click on the word Blogfinger below to hear an unusual rendition of a classic New Orleans show and song.—Paul @Blogfinger; from 2014.

Blogfinger

Vaughan's at 4229 Dauphine Street in New Orleans.  Photo: NO Easy Travel Guide. Vaughan’s at 4229 Dauphine Street in New Orleans. Photo: NO Easy Travel Guide.

New Orleans.  By Paul Goldfinger. © New Orleans. By Paul Goldfinger. ©

The fourth and final season of the HBO series Tremé finished last last month.  Tremé, about the people of New Orleans post-Katrina, was a wonderful show.  The New York Times just reviewed Season 4, and the link is below. The main themes included the music and musicians, food, crime, real estate wheelers and dealers, lawyers, cops and Mardi Gras parades and Indians.

Kermit Ruffins is a real life New Orleans musician who appears in the series.   Many of the scenes take place in actual  NO bars, restaurants and music venues.  Vaughan’s is on Dauphine Street, and our selection below was recorded live by Kermit Ruffins at that restaurant. The vocalist is Kermit’s daughter Misha who is studying classical piano at the Southern University of Baton Rouge.

“Do You…

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