NBA is not the NRA
I think President Donald Trump has confused the NBA (an entertainment competition) with the NRA (a gun-rights advocacy organization that often supports Republicans). But I only see confusion and lies spewing out of his mouth.
Deny variances for hotel
The proposed redevelopment of Strathmere’s motel threatens the quality of life of a small beach town. The real damage may be to the democratic values of citizenry and good government.
Over the past two years the building codes in Strathmere were overhauled. Almost immediately comes a proposal to build a new hotel that will require at least four major variances from the Zoning Board. They could thwart the will of the Planning Board, the Township Committee, its legal counselors, and the Strathmere residents who helped craft the new codes. No one elected the Zoning Board. We can’t recall the last time it rejected a variance in Strathmere.
If the motel development is permitted, it will also damage the quality of civic life in Upper Township. Why would anyone volunteer to collaborate with local government in the future when their good work could be undone by the Zoning Board? Why would anyone serve on the Planning Board? And why would anyone run a seat on the Township Committee?
The process of planning is linear: first the Planning Board designs a vision for the common good. Then the Township Committee enacts the legal framework to build that vision. This was the process with the Strathmere codes, and how democracy at the local level should work. Now I believe the Zoning Board may ignore that framework and throw out years of thoughtful work from planners and the people they represent.
This is not a Strathmere problem. People should fight this slap in the face before it happens, and before it happens on other streets.
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