Following FEMA’s rejection of Ocean Grove’s request for public funding to assist with the rebuilding of the boardwalk, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bob Martin visted Ocean Grove to meet with local officials and 11th district legislators. Ocean Grove is appealing FEMA’s decision.
“I am grateful that Commissioner Martin is taking the time to come and meet with community leaders and hear their case,” said Rep. Chris Smith (NJ-04). “Ocean Grove is an integral part of the New Jersey Shoreline inMonmouthCountywith its boardwalk providing a vital link between the towns ofAsbury Parkand Bradley Beach. This heavily used, recognized public thoroughfare needs to be repaired and again serve as a resource for police, emergency personal, and the public. Hopefully, the Ocean Grove boardwalk will be put back into service as soon as possible.”
“Commissioner Martin’s visit sent a message to the residents of Ocean Grove and to FEMA that the Christie administration is taking this decision very seriously,” said Senator Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth). “Ocean Grove’s boardwalk is integral to theMonmouthCounty’s shoreline and serves as a critical provider of emergency services including lifeguards and EMTs. The Association also maintains the boardwalk while providing full public access and year round emergency services to the residents of Ocean Grove and neighboring towns. I cannot stress enough how important this boardwalk is to the region.”
In correspondence dated February 6th, FEMA rejected Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association’s request for public assistance to rebuild the boardwalk. The letter from FEMA explained Ocean Grove does not meet the criteria of an eligible facility described in Title 44 Code of Federal Regulations 206.221(e) and Policy- [r]ecreational facilities owned or operated by private nonprofit
applicants are not eligible for FEMA public assistance. Senator Beck, Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande and Assemblywoman Mary Pat Angelini responded with a promise to support Ocean Grove’s appeal.
“We are so grateful Commissioner Martin came to Ocean Grove to view first hand the damage to the boardwalk” says Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande (R-Monmouth). “The residents and businesses of historic Ocean Grove are looking for the same assistance that otherJerseyShorecommunities have gotten. The goal is to have a thriving community ready to receive tourists this summer season.”
“I am very pleased that Commissioner Martin was able to get a firsthand look at the damage done to Ocean Grove’s boardwalk. Not only is the boardwalk vital to Ocean Grove’s business district it is an integral part of our regional economy,” said AssemblywomanMary Pat Angelini(R- Monmouth). ”We will continue working to find a solution that will allow the boardwalk to be rebuilt without creating a financial burden for local taxpayers.”
“Ocean Grove is very grateful for the hands on effort, commitment and attention that the Christie Administration is providing our community in light of FEMA’s initial determination,” said Dr. Dale Whilden, President of the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association. “We are also appreciative of Commissioner Martin’s visit today and the unwavering support of Congressman Smith, Senator Beck, Assemblywoman Casagrande and Assemblywoman Angelini.”