Archive for the ‘Ocean Grove environmental concerns’ Category

This email is from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection to Paul Goldfinger,  Editor @Blogfinger.net dated October 28,. 2020.   Read it carefully:


Re: Ocean Grove: The application remains pending.  Notice of the 30-day public comment period was published on page 46 of the Oct. 21, 2020 edition of the DEP bulletin. 

A fact-finding public hearing on a CAFRA* individual permit application would be held if additional information is necessary to help the DEP evaluate the proposed project’s potential impacts, and if that information can only be obtained through a public hearing. 

As part of the process, the DEP reviews submitted public comments, and/or the proposed project’s scope, and/or the environmental impact of the proposed project.

To date, the DEP has heard from two commenters, both of which have indicated that their counsel will submit further comment on their behalf.

At this time, a public hearing has not been deemed necessary.


Editor’s note:  Note that “submitted public comments” are reviewed by DEP and they are taken seriously.

If you have something to say to the DEP about the NORTH END OGNED CAFRA APPLICATION, then you should put it in writing and send it to the NJDEP, return receipt requested.



New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
Permit Application Submitted to the Division of Land Resource Protection Changes in the Status Submitted of the Period 09/29/2020 to 10/12/2020.  Note the date submitted 04/13/2020.  The names are the project managers.  The  applicants’ name is OGNED  (Ocean Grove North End Development)  The project location is listed as 17 Spray Avenue.


Monmouth – Neptune Twp

1334-04-0007.2 – LUP – 200001


The North End Redevelopment project located in the northern Ocean Grove section of the Township of Neptune includes the replacement 5 story, 40 room historic hotel, two multi-family 3- 4 story buildings containing 39 dwelling units; ten detached

2.5 story single family residence. 7353 s.f. first floor retail area facing the boardwalk, 155 parking spaces 140 of which are covered by the podium deck; the restoration of a waterfront promenade, and recreation



Becky Mazzei, Christian Zografos



*The Coastal Area Facility Review Act, also known as CAFRA, authorizes the Department to regulate a wide variety of residential, commercial, public, or industrial development, such as the construction, relocation, and enlargement of buildings and structures, and associated work, such as grading and excavation

Read Full Post »

Speaking of environmental: Will the North End Plan take care of increased ground water that could pollute the ocean and the lake? Blogfinger photo.


By Paul Goldfinger,  Editor @Blogfinger.net.

October 26, 2020.  Ocean Grove, NJ


The DEP application has been held up for months now; we don’t know all the details about what is delaying approval, but our last communication with the DEP  (Oct. 8)  is linked below.

In it, the DEP Press Officer told us:

“Paul, nothing has been approved at this point. The fact that the application has been deemed complete only means the DEP has been provided all the required information to now put the proposal up for public review and comment.”


North End update on Blogfinger Oct. 8, 2020


I have also checked the latest DEP Bimonthly Bulletin, but there is nothing there about the North End application. I will look into that further.  If nothing else, Blogfinger will shine a light on the opaque and sneaky OGNED.

Remember when they came to the Groaners’ meeting, refusing to answer certain questions, and the Groaners supported that censorship?  What do the Groaners stand for?

We have reached this point without any updated public statements on the subject by Neptune Township, the CMA, the Home Groaners, or the opaque and secretive OGNED.  The bottom line is that nothing has been approved yet, and public comments will have to be solicited.

The letter below, dated Oct. 20, 2020, is written by the Lomax Consulting Group which has been representing OGNED, the self-proclaimed North End Re-developer. We believe that the letter was sent to everyone who owns a home within 200 feet of the North End project.

The letter was shared with us by an anonymous source.  He/she says, “Just received this updated notification of the application for a CAFRA permit for the north end.   The only difference from the original one received in March is the location now includes Part of Lot 5 and the End of Beach Avenue which were not on the original application as well as the NJDEP File Number.   There is no change to the plan attached to the application.”

Click on letter and site plan for easier reading. 

Note that the letter doesn’t spell out the process whereby public hearings might be held.   The only way that the fraudulent aspects of this application might be exposed is if knowledgeable OG organizations or individuals formally contact the DEP to request hearings to be held in the Grove.

In a normal town, the Home Owners Association would step up and make sure that the interests of  OG residents are represented, but our HOA is useless when it comes to advocacy in the face of dangerous issues such as  what OGNED, CMA and Neptune Townships are planning for the North End.  But if anyone does want to formally request such an inquiry, they need to send a letter with return receipt requested.  

As we have pointed out, the plan which Lomax submitted to the NJDEP is not the one approved by the Neptune Township Committee back in 2008 which included 165 condominiums.  And it is not the one which Mayor Rizzo carelessly signed off on in her “Redevelopers Agreement” with OGNED last year.


Site plan submitted to NJDEPfor Block 101, lots 3&4, parts of loat 2 and 54, and end of Beach Avenue


Editor’s note
:   Read that letter.  They don’t mention an “underground garage,”  only 140 spaces  “covered by a podium deck..”  The total parking is 155 spaces.  Where are the other 15?

They also mention a “historic hotel.”  That is clearly nonsensical and dishonest  terminology.

Speaking of “historic;”


The Lenape Indians probably were in Ocean Grove back when, so tents are truly historic for the North End. And so were bikinis on the beach.  Let’s turn the North End into Tent Village II. Source: Google says so.


And they say, “The project will not result in the adverse impact on environmentally sensitive areas”  Really?  Are Wesley Lake and the Atlantic Ocean “environmentally sensitive areas?”


Let’s not let Ocean Grove slip slide away:  


PAUL SIMON    2011 in London at the iTunes Festival

“Slip slidin’ away
Slip slidin’ away
You know the nearer your destination
The more you’re slip slidin’ away.”




Read Full Post »

Wesley Lake (Retention/Detention basin) Paul Goldfinger © Ocean Grove, New Jersey


Read Full Post »

Jack Bredin (L), Kevin Chambers (R) and Paul Goldfinger (photographer) represented Ocean Grove at the SIAB in December 2015.


By Paul Goldfinger, Editor and Jack Bredin, reporter/researcher for Blogfinger.net  (Ocean Grove, NJ)

The Site Improvement Advisory Board (SIAB)  is a regulatory board, part of the N.J. Department of Community Affairs.  The 12 appointed members meet quarterly to implement their task of regulating residential development in New Jersey.  They concern themselves with matters such as streets/parking, storm-water management, water supply, and sanitary sewers.  It provides engineering standards to ensure public health and safety.

Exceptions can be made to these standards   (“A municipality or a developer may individually or jointly request a waiver from a provision of the RSIS from the Site Improvement Advisory Board by showing that adherence to a particular provision presents a danger to public health and safety.“)*

The 12 members are all professionals representing various groups including planners, engineers, Builders Association, New Jersey Institute of Technology, Div. of Codes and Standards, and others.  This group is clearly devoted to protecting the citizens of New Jersey.

Remember when Neptune wanted to get an exception to the RSIS  (Residential Site Improvement Standards) regarding parking in Ocean Grove which would allow the floodgates to open for condoization all over town, gridlock, and a worsening parking situation?  So, when Blogfinger and some other Ocean Grove citizens showed up at that 12/15 meeting, the Neptuners took a look around and asked for their request to be cancelled.  It has not re-appeared on the agenda since then.

But we expect that exceptions will be requested again by Neptune with respect to the North End Redevelopment Plan.

So today, October  18, 2018, Jack and I went to a meeting of the SIAB in Trenton.  We were treated cordially by the Chairman Joseph  Doyle,Jr and by John Lago, administrator.  We were attracted to this meeting because of agenda items:  committee reports on storm-water and streets/parking, parking decks and large surface lots. And we were pleased to see that the Board  recognized us and were interested in why we were there.

We listened carefully to their discussions which were quite technical and not specifically about us, but it was important that the SIAB knows that Ocean Grove citizens have issues.

During the public portion, Jack stood up and read a statement which he wrote about Wesley Lake pollution and about the name change of that body of water. Jack reported that Neptune  had instituted an “illegal” name change on the tax map. He asked for “guidance” from the board about this matter.  We did not raise parking issues this time.

Chairman Doyle said the Wesley Lake matter was ” a very complicated issue,” but that his board could not “address it.”   He and other board members did however respond to Jack’s statement that the name change violated the requirements of the DEP’s Green Acre program of which Wesley Lake is part.

Mr. Doyle recommended that the matter be taken up with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection  (DEP) because this may be a violation of State and Federal laws.  At a personal level, the Chairman said that he has a home in Bradley Beach and was familiar with Ocean Grove and its lakes.

It is our belief that our ongoing relationship with the SIAB will help us monitor the efforts of Neptune Township to bypass regulations in Ocean Grove which also include zoning and land use improprieties. It will help to remind the SIAB that we are still around and active.

Note:  If you Google the SIAB, the last Blogfinger post on this subject comes up high on the list.  Also, a search of the BF search box on top will reveal some other posts about SIAB.

Blogfinger goes to Trenton in 2015


Wells, Jaworski and Liebman  law firm*



Read Full Post »

Sackman Enterprises created 98 rental units near the beach in A. Park.  They own other properties in AP including a new condo project and the restored Steinbach building.  They also  own #60 Main Avenue in OG.   (the brick pizza building with high rentals)   Internet photo.

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.

Here is a link to a post we published last July regarding the relationship between OG and A. Park. It raises some important issues.

OG AP connection

In Ocean Grove the pressure on “our” parking will continue to increase due to the Asbury parkers. And this is on top of other parking concerns such as the Camp Meeting Association’s plans to increase its year round programming, and the ambitious new activities at the Jersey Shore Arts Center which has new year-round events that have made life intermittently difficult over in that west end Grovarian neighborhood, and the JSAC has even more ambitious plans for the future.

And then there is the pressure  (as with the Warrington site) to create multi-unit condominium or hotel units without offering off-street parking. Added to the mixed bag is the  continued large-scale extravaganzas by the Chamber of Commerce which shuts down our streets and crams thousands of tourists for their big events.  They, the Township, and the CMA have done nothing to help residents with the parking situation during these grid-lock megalomaniac events.

Real estate in Asbury Park continues to be hot as millennials*  come into town to be close to the Asburian action. A side effect of that is the growing AP housing demand resulting in real estate spillover to Ocean Grove—–be close to the action while paying less for housing here.  But then we will see rising price pressure in OG.

If you go to any fine restaurant in A. Park you will find well-healed young people enjoying expensive dinners.  This trend will increase, and a large new high-rise building near the ocean will have condominiums, a hotel, stores and offices.

Some condos in AP have doubled  (or more) in value in just a few years,  and resales can bring up to $1 million.  There are quite a few smaller condominium conversions as well as large units all over Asbury-town, especially at their north end.    Of course they have parking problems that keep increasing.   A recent condo project recently took over a parking lot near Wesley Lake.  All of this development impacts Ocean Grove to some extent.  Woe is us!.

And how about the street water runoff into Wesley Lake?  Jack and I visited the Monroe  work site  a few months ago  (below)  and all we saw regarding the Lake’s ecology were a few ironic storm drains along the lake with a carving of a fish on them.

Where is the DEP?   We hear that the DEP plans to get involved in shore lake management, but so far, no news on that front.

Storm sewer on the Asbury side of Wesley Lake. Blogfinger photo. Click to see the ironic fish.

This is the newly built  Monroe which faces Wesley Lake on the AP side. Internet photo.

In addition, Bradley Beach has become hot with higher prices for homes that sold for a lot less not long ago.  This is the Asbury Park effect to the south of OG. And you can buy alcoholic beverages in BB.

It’s interesting that back in the day, when AP  had roaring honky tonk going on, people from BB, Avon and other southern destinations  would walk through OG, heading north on the boards, admire the scenery and the peacefulness of our town, and then proceed as fast as they could to reach the promised land of Asburian hot-times before some Grover calls them sinners.   Now the Asbury Park two-step is back again, and developers want to turn OG into AP South.com.

Some buyers are seeking houses in OG and BB as sources of income for Air B& B and more long range rentals.  From the point of view of OG residents, this is not good news.  This kind of activity can change Ocean Grove significantly.

*Millennials often are highly educated and have good jobs. Now they have saved some money and they are looking for housing around here.  Some condos in AP have doubled their valuations  (and along with it their property taxes.)

The  Pew Research Center will use 1996 as the last birth year for Millennials.    Anyone born between 1981 and 1996 (ages 22-37 in 2018) will be considered a Millennial, and anyone born from 1997 onward will be part of a new generation.

This is an explosive  time for the staid Victorian town of Ocean Grove.  Anyone who lives here, full time or part time or as a vacation destination should be aware.

LIANNE LA HAVAS     from the movie Loving Vincent—-“Starry, Starry Night”

Read Full Post »

Sent by citizen reporters Susan and Barry Krumm reportng from the North End beach.. 5/31/17


The Rainbow Connection. Ocean Pathway. Ocean Grove. 2013 Paul Goldfinger photo ©

By Paul Goldfinger, MD.   Editor @Blogfinger

Does this advisory surprise you?  The Monmouth County Health Dept has been checking* the ocean water every Monday for many years at 50 ocean sites, and, it turns out, Ocean Grove has had a tendency to have worse problems than other beaches in our area.  Our water tests positive* for enterococci (coliforms) derived from feces more often.  Tomorrow, the Health Dept will close our beaches if the count remains too high, not only at the North End, but also at the South End.

Why should our beaches be more of a problem than others?  The general answer is that we are situated between two “ocean lakes”—Wesley and Fletcher which collect dirty street water which then runs off into the ocean. The fecal bacteria could be traced  to inland infrastructure failures  (ie sewer lines leaking) but mostly it is from dirty street water runoff, and oftentimes the source of that bacteria is animal feces.

The high counts get worse when there are rain storms—which the Dept of Health, in a  rare moment of humor, refers to as “crappy weather.”

And there are other issues for Ocean Grove. Wesley Lake receives a huge volume of street water during storms, and Wesley Lake itself has higher temperatures than other area lakes (? reason) and it receives a large amount of “nutrients”  (nitrates and phosphates ? from fertilizers.)

Whenever an area is “built out,” the amount of dirty water runoff increases, and guess what:  The Ocean Grove side of Wesley Lake is worse than the Asbury part because there is a four foot pipe that carries street runoff from NEPTUNE TOWNSHIP—an area reaching from Neptune  Rt. 35 and Neptune Boulevard all the way east to the Lake.

Regarding Wesley Lake, the Health Dept. Specialist that I spoke to refers to the Wesley Lake water condition as being “pretty bad.” But, he believes that the main source of the enterococci detected in our ocean test is NEPTUNE TOWNSHIP.

He says that “detention basin” is not a bad name for what goes on there because since the ocean end of the Lake was essentially closed off in the past, the Lake became the place where rainwater runoff sits.

And  the Township has not shared that bacterial information with us nor has the Wesley Lake Commission, unless they are ignorant of this issue.

The County Health Department is currently embarking on a two year study of Wesley Lake, and when it is over, they will look at possible remediation recommendations.   But because Neptune, Ocean Grove, and Asbury are so built up, it isn’t clear that they can do anything to fix the infrastructure  (old sewer lines.) Perhaps they will make other recommendations. 

We received today’s  information from David Sorenson, Environmental Health Specialist at the Monmouth County Health Dept. Their phone number is 732 431 7456, and I would suggest that the Wesley Lake Commission and the Friends of Wesley Lake jot down his phone number.  He also recommends a web site where the data can be reviewed:

NJDEP Coastal Monitoring

—–*Coastal Cooperative Beach Program

Read Full Post »

“Low Tide at Wesley Lake”  Blogfinger photo.©


Water  near the retaining wall by Founders’ Park in OG. Blogfinger  (Stephen Goldfinger)  photo. 12/7/16 © Click it and then take a deep breath. Is it any wonder that not a single bird was in sight?


Wesley Lake, west end. March 28, 2017. Paul Goldfinger photo © Click to enlarge. Photograph from the muckrakers at Blogfinger–Paul Goldfinger.© March, 2017.

By Jack Bredin, researcher and reporter for Blogfinger.net  and Paul Goldfinger, Editor@Blogfinger.net

Blogfinger has posted a variety of articles about Wesley Lake pollution. Today we feature yet another piece on that subject which contains some new elements which we have not addressed before.

Q:  The Lenape Indians used Wesley Lake as a source of food.  Now the Lake is reserved for recreation and conservation—-or is it?

A:  According to the Neptune township Tax Map (effective Jan. 1, 2015) Wesley Lake is now a municipal facility to be used to treat dirty street-water runoff. The Lake’s name has been changed to ” Wesley Detention/Retention  Basin” under the supervision of the Departments of Public Works.

Q: Who is responsible for this?

A:  It starts with the Neptune Township Committee along with the Mayor and Council of Asbury Park.   The  two governing bodies are in  charge, so  the buck stops with them, or in this case, the pollution starts and stops with them.    Officials from both towns took an oath  that would include managing the welfare of the Lake for recreational use.  It should be noted that most of the dirty street-water runoff comes from AP.

Q: How did this happen?

A:  It happened when the mayors of both Neptune and AP took their charters and hung them on the developers’ walls.

Q:  Who can correct this plethora of problems involving the Lake’s rehabilitation and restoration?

A: The Wesley Lake Commission. Or can they?  Jack attended a meeting of the Commission on May 16, 2017, and suggested that they should not allow street-water runoff to enter the Lake because that is causing the Lake to be polluted. And the streets are not part of the Lake’s natural watershed.


A member of the Wesley Lake Commission representing Neptune’s DPW  (Dept. of Public Works) said, “The streets are in the ‘watershed area,’  and in New Jersey you are permitted by the Dept. of Environmental Protection to allow street water runoff to drain into a lake.”

But the “watershed area” includes all the land that drains into the lake, and by that definition, it does includes street run-off.  But there is a semantic issue here.  He would be correct if the streets were a part of the Lake’s “natural watershed” and not just “in the watershed area.”    The”natural water-shed area”  is desirable, but dirty street water is not part of that.

So his argument boils down to “let’s keep polluting the Lake illegally.”

You might have noticed the Rainwater Garden near the train station in Asbury Park.  That is an example of a desirable “natural” water-shed area where the rain is purified by the soil and plantings and then the clean water drains into the lake.

And if the name change from Wesley Lake to “Wesley Detention/Retention Basin” had been done legally by Resolution of the Neptune Committee with permission from the New Jersey DEP Green Acres Program,  then the streets would become “the watershed” for a detention/retention basin, but there was no such Resolution or Green Acres permission.  Note that a detention/retention basin is an actual structural facility to clean the water draining into the Lake. So far all we have is a name change on the Neptune Tax Map.  We don’t even have a map that shows the Lake’s water-shed. And we don’t know where A. Park stands on this, but we can guess.

So what’s in a name?–in this case, nothing.

Another member of the Commission said, “The condition of Wesley Lake is the same now as it has been for the last 10,000 years, and the condition of the Lake’s mud is a naturally occurring condition found in every lake.”

We think the dead fish never got the professor’s message.  And, we have to remind the professor, that 10,000 years ago they were first brewing beer in Mesopotamia, but there are no records of what Wesley Lake looked like then.  We barely know about it from records of 1869. We do know that it was much different than it is now—then it was a full blown estuary.

And don’t forget, the water may look or test clear sometimes, but what toxins are trapped in the mud? They don’t test the mud, only the water, and how often do they test the water?

We may be at a crossroads, but we still have the choice of which road to take, before it is too late:

1. “The road to recovery:”  Stopping the dirty street water from entering the Lake would be the first step in the Lake’s road to recovery
2. “The road to “Condo-City:”  This road would be a fantasy by certain factions in Ocean Grove who might see the Lake as a dead-end street where the polluted silt (ie mud)  builds up to a point where dredging and disposing of all that polluted mud becomes economically unfeasible.
And that leads to a scripted conclusion that it would be more cost effective to “cap” the mud, fill in the Lake, and build some modern, up-to-date condominiums.  It could happen!







Read Full Post »

Township Committee

Township Committee

Quotes from Township Committee minutes are  below.   Reading minutes is much more fun than sitting through those meetings. 

Jan 9 minutes:

Ken Buckley (HOA  Trustee) stated that he trusts that summonses will be issued to people parking in the snow emergency zones and for failure to clear snow from sidewalks.

Jan 23 minutes:

Ms. Rizzo stated that the  (Parking) Task Force did a great job and came up with good recommendations. She indicated that she is favor of moving forward with angled parking on the north side of Main Avenue between New Jersey and Lawrence Avenues and on the west side of Central Avenue between Webb and Main Avenues.

Mr. Williams also noted that a Sub-Committee of Task Force members was created to examine parking permits. It was noted that parking permits would not increase the number of parking spots or decrease the number of cars. Concerns were raised about permit parking proposals such as increased demand for non-permit spaces, impact for families with multiple vehicles, fairness to hotels and bed-breakfast establishments, and cost of the start-up and enforcement of about $90,000.

Mayor Brantley thanked the parking task force. He felt they did a tremendous job and it has improved the situation.

Feb. 13 minutes:

Ken Buckley (HOA big shot)  stated that the shoveling of sidewalks in the recent snowstorm was good and issuing summonses really works.

Jack Bredin, 94 1⁄2 Heck Avenue, stated the name of Wesley Lake on the tax map was changed from Wesley Lake to Wesley/Retention Basin. He went to a Wesley Lake Commission meeting and they stated they really had no input into that name change. Asbury Park assured him that they had no part in the name change. He asked at a Township meeting how did it get changed and Mr. Bishop stated they were told to change it but he did not mention by whom. He stated he believed that Mr. Bishop thought to himself that somethings were left better off not said.

Editor’s Notes:

–Isn’t it great that the OGHOA was pleased with itself after pushing for fines to punish those who didn’t shovel?  Ken Buckley should get a medal for that one.   What’s next—-bad parking techniques, raking leaves the wrong way?

The Committee was pleased that they are going to squeeze more cars into town using more diagonal parking without addressing the more fundamental problem of too many cars.  The HOA Parking Committee also loved the idea.

And how hard did the HOA  push to get we taxpayers stickers to reduce our parking concerns?

—-Why isn’t the HOA pushing the Township to deal with land use violations that guarantee more and more cars and crowding in town?

—And why didn’t the HOA find out why Committeeman Brantley was showing developers around the North End site last year.  Why was this activity part of his job as an elected representative of we the people?

—And why isn’t the HOA trying to find out why Wesley Lake has undergone a worrisome name change?  Well don’t expect the HOA to get involved in Wesley Lake’s problems. Here is an item from their November 2016 minutes regarding items to discuss for 2017:  “Westley Lake pollution”   If you can’t spell it, you’re not likely to be helpful.

As we can see from the minutes, no one in the big chairs on the podium will tell the truth about the Wesley Lake name change.  Why are all our committeemen willing to accept an answer of “we don’t know” or “we can’t say?”

—-And  what has happened to the HPC guidelines?  The HPC made an initial fuss over what they saw as a threat to the town’s future and then they clammed up and joined the other opaque silent groups in town. Did somebody from the shadow government threaten them?    Meanwhile the HOA Nov. minutes say, “It appears as if the goal of the township is to limit the power of the HPC to reduce cost to home owners.”  So why don’t we hear from the HOA on this matter?   Why is the HOA perpetually busy going against the taxpayers of Ocean Grove?

—-And Carol Rizzo, the only  Committeeman from Ocean Grove, seems to have jumped on the big boys bandwagon up on the podium. She seems reluctant to step out of the box and tackle some of the worrisome issues for OG such as violations of land use laws and investigating the secretive North End situation with a questioning eye.  She seems to be sticking with safe zones such as parking.  We would welcome hearing from her as to her activity vis a vis Ocean Grove.  Maybe she can lead the charge for  better fire safety in the Grove.

—And what does the Committee think about drug rehab facilities in town?  They don’t seem to want to be daring and proactive when a potent issue like this shows up. This subject may reactivate this year, especially if funding for such facilities is retained at the federal level.

MARY McCARTY   from Chicago  (Of course, this song would apply to all members of the Committee–just change mama to poppa as needed.)

Read Full Post »

North end portrait by Deep Float, our Grovarian environmental watchman. who sent the photo.

North end portrait by Deep Float, our Grovarian environmental watchman who sent the photo on Dec 4, 2016.  Click on any of these delightful photos to make the mess bigger.


From Deep Float at the Nrrth End near the Wesley Lake basin spill-over. Dec 4, 2012.

Crapiness abounds at the North End.  Photo from Deep Float near the Wesley Lake basin spill-over. Dec 4, 2012.

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.  Note: Schmutz * rhymes with foots.  It is  Yiddish for dirt–(from the Blogfinger University Department of Useful Synonyms.)

A Grover citizen reporter nicknamed “Deep Float” notified us recently that there was an awful mess at the North End.  He complained that much of the schmutz was due to the Dunes food complex located in the White Whale Building.  He sent photos and noted that the problem stemmed from a dumpster that had been allowed to overflow.  He said that the dumpster had been at the location since after Labor Day.

Float said, “I called code enforcement two times and nothing. I went to see John new president of C.M. two times and nothing. I have photos from August with boxes and eatery refuge that has been flying around all summer due to a lack of cooperation between Gannon and C.M.”

There are those who complained about the same mess at the last OGHOA meeting.   Today we visited the site, and maybe someone else complained, because the area looks cleaner now, although it is generally ugly due to crummy fencing and decrepitude strewn around in a haphazard way.  All the stores appear to be closed now.

We also heard from a Grover who walks his dog daily by Wesley Lake. He reported that the Lake was “awful” with debris, worse than usual, and that was verified today by us.  Most likely all that rain drove filthy street water into the sewers and then into the Wesley retention/detention basin—- ie a giant water hole which receives all sorts of toxins, chemicals, bacteria, animal feces and dirt from the streets of Asbury Park–and less so from Ocean Grove.

WAter sample near the retaining wall by Founders' Park in OG. Blogfinger photo. 12/7/16 ©

Water sample near the retaining wall by Founders’ Park in OG. Blogfinger photo. 12/7/16 © Click it and then take a deep breath. Is it any wonder that not a single bird was in sight?


At the east end of Wesley Lake where debris accumulates near the catch basin. Blogfinger photo. ©

At the east end of Wesley Lake where debris accumulates near the catch basin. Blogfinger photo. ©

Who is fighting to protect Ocean Grove from this sort of pollution?






Read Full Post »

Wesley Lake 2009 . Ocean Grove, NJ. Paul Goldfinger photo ©.

Wesley Lake 2009 . Ocean Grove, NJ. Paul Goldfinger photo ©.

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger and Jack Bredin, Blogfinger researcher and reporter.

In recent posts, Blogfinger acquainted our readers with the renaming of Wesley Lake into the “Wesley Detention/Retention Basin.” We alerted our readers to the change in Wesley Lake from public open space land to a water retention basin on the Tax Map.   Jack Bredin, Blogfinger researcher, has reviewed this issue and he has used the Neptune Township Master Plan (2011)  and the latest Tax Map as his main sources.  

Today’s post focuses on the “Name Blame Game” and tries to  get some answers.

Our emphasis is on Wesley Lake, but the same thing happened on the Neptune Township Tax Map for Fletcher Lake which also has a  new name: “Fletcher Detention/Retention Basin.”

The link below is to our latest post  (Nov 13, 2016) on the subject of “What’s in a Name?”:


We pointed out that the Neptune Master Plan supports the idea of keeping our lakes clean. It says, “Encourage the reduction of runoff into surface water bodies.” We think that the name change was done to save money for developers in Asbury Park and Ocean Grove.

This name change would not be permitted by the DEP or the Green Acres program.

In addition, Wesley Lake and Fletcher Lake are on the Township’s ROSI list (Recreational and Open Space Inventory) where the Township is committed to hold these lands reserved for recreation and conservation “in perpetuity” in exchange for Green Acres funds. 

But instead, the Township seems to be committed to dumping even more dirty water into Wesley Lake and using the Lake as a municipal facility.

Our prior posts also contained email exchanges with Tee Lesinski, a member of the Wesley Lake Commission, who said, “The Commission had nothing to do with the name change, and Wesley Lake is not a retention basin.”

Despite our publicizing this issue, no one from Neptune Township has explained to the citizens of Ocean Grove who is responsible for the name change and what is the true reason for it. We believe that the Neptune Township Committee has to accept responsibility for the name change because they have the exclusive authority over the Tax Map. Only they could order the change.

At the last Township Committee meeting on November 28, 2016, Jack Bredin once again waited patiently for the public portion and then he went to the microphone to publicly ask the 5 man/woman Committee about this name change situation.  What he said was recorded and will appear in the Committee’s minutes, although it might take quite a while.


Here is a summary of what Jack crammed into 5 minutes:

—– He reminded them of their environmental obligations under the State Land Use Law and their own Master Plan. They are supposed to reduce dirty street water runoff into our lakes, not increase the runoff according to the Tax Map renaming Wesley Lake. 

Jack also reviewed the ROSI statement and the Green Acres obligations for protecting all places on the list for recreation and conservation. A ROSI statement is required to be signed by the Mayor and the Chairman of the Planning Board and is attached to each application for Green Acre funding.

—–This obligation is confirmed by the Neptune Township Planning Board Chairman and the Neptune Township Mayor when they signed off on the 2011 Master Plan.
—–Jack asked who will take responsibility for the name change on the Tax Map?
—–He asked who will publicly explain why the name change was done?
—–He pointed out that all Township maps (eg zoning and Wesley Lake Commission) must contain the same name change as is present on the Tax Map. These maps must be consistent with the Tax Map, but they are not.

—–And he wanted to know why there is no formal resolution available to authorize the name change. Without a “Resolution” there are no “Reasons” to change the name of Wesley or Fletcher Lake.


In response to Jack’s comments, no one on the Committee or the Township Attorney was willing to answer the questions.

Jack’s inquiry was met with silence.


Those of you who support the current Township Committee have got to wonder about such issues as transparency, following the law, representative government, caring for the environment, and favoritism for developers. The “Name Blame Game” is a perfect touchstone for illustrating those concerns.


MATT CAVENAUGH.  “Something’s Coming”  from West Side Story 2009 Broadway cast album.


Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: