I would like to thank all of Sea Isle City’s property-owners and visitors, who have been very patient while road work has taken place throughout our town. Nobody likes to deal with street closures or detours; however, the infrastructure improvements that we are undergoing along Park Road, Central Avenue and Landis Avenue will surely benefit us all. I would especially like to thank the residents of the 100 block of 79th Street, who have been waiting for several years for repairs to take place along their deteriorated road, which required involvement from the County. Work on 79th Street is now underway, and we are grateful for everyone’s cooperation, patience and understanding.
This weekend, parishioners from Saint Joseph Catholic Church will celebrate the completion of their new house of worship with a special concert on Sunday afternoon. The concert, which begins at 3:00 p.m. inside the new church, will feature Carl Granieri and his orchestra performing with a 100-voice choir. Concert tickets cost $25 each and can be purchased at the parish rectory on 44th Street or at the door on the day of the concert. –Let the music begin!
With each passing week, more and more people are returning to Sea Isle City to resume their favorite seashore activities. I’m very happy to report that I am continually greeted by residents and visitors, who tell me how much they are enjoying Sea Isle’s recent improvements. People seem especially pleased with our new library and historical museum at 48th and Central, the recent beautification efforts along JFK Boulevard, and the current construction of our new Information Center. Clearly, this is a very exciting time for our town, and the best part is that we are not yet done growing! By the time the summer rolls around, we will also have a new public parking lot on JFK Boulevard, dredging will have begun in the Rio Grande and Rio Del Isole lagoons, and renovations at the Townsend Inlet Waterfront Park will be completed. As you will see when you read the Project Updates below, there are also other construction efforts taking place in town, which will further contribute to Sea Isle’s beauty and the strength of our infrastructure.
Occasionally, I also meet local property-owners while I am out of town. On a recent plane ride home from Florida, I was approached by Bob and Ellen Norton, who were kind enough to introduce themselves during the flight. The Nortons commented on Sea Isle’s E-Newsletter, how they appreciate being able to stay informed, and how much they enjoy reading about their favorite shore town every two weeks. It seems that no matter where I go, people are talking about Sea Isle City. It’s always great to hear positive comments about the town we all love, and I look forward to speaking with more of you in the future about what’s happening on our island. We will continue to keep everyone aware of pertinent information through Sea Isle’s E-Newsletters, E-Alerts and all other means possible, because an informed community is a productive community. After all, what good are all these wonderful changes if nobody knows about them?
Smile...You're in Sea Isle!
Mayor Leonard C. Desiderio
CITY COUNCIL MESSAGE:
As discussed in our previous newsletters, we will have a second reading, public hearing and final vote on the following ordinances during our next council meeting on Tuesday, April 24:
--Ordinance #1517, which includes various items related to parking. Key elements in that ordinance are: A) Parking rates will now be 25-cents for 15 minutes (versus the previous rate of 25-cents for 30 minutes); B) Additional parking meter locations will be installed; and C) 15-minute parking spots will be added in the business district. This same ordinance also provides for the installation of two stop signs along Central Avenue.
--Ordinance #1518, to authorize the use of capital surplus for various items.
--Ordinance #1519, which will allow for the licensing of a new Jitney in Sea Isle City this summer.
--Ordinance #1520, which will allow the sale of alcohol on Sundays starting at 10:00 a.m.
We encourage all residents and visitors to participate in our Spring Beach Clean Up, hosted by the Sea Isle City Environmental Commission, on Saturday April 21, 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon. Sign-up takes place on Saturday at JFK Boulevard at the Promenade. All participants will be rewarded with a buffet luncheon, hosted and provided by Mike’s Seafood in Fish Alley.
City Council and the City’s Administration have formed a Landis Avenue Streetscape Committee. The charter of this group is to look for ways to enhance the Landis Avenue streetscape within our business district and make it compatible with the new improvements at Braca Plaza and anticipated improvements along JFK Boulevard this fall. This committee is made up of representatives from City Council, the Administration, the Chamber of Commerce and Revitalization and Sea Isle’s Beautification Committee. We anticipate that the committee will be in a position to share their proposals with the public by late spring.
City Council will hold our annual Saturday meeting on May 19, at 9:00 a.m., inside Council Chambers. This meeting is being held in conjunction with Community Day, which begins at 11:00 a.m. on May 19 at the Community Lodge.
Best Regards from the Members of City Council
Please Note: As we head toward the summer, the push is on to complete projects in advance of our busy tourist season. Our objective continues to be to maintain and improve Sea Isle’s public assets and infrastructure in order to provide our residents and visitors with the best quality of life, and fulfill the City’s vision of Sea Isle as a premier destination resort, while maintaining a small town, community atmosphere.
Phase 2 of Excursion Park, Beach to Bay Corridor – This project involves streetscape improvements to the public corridor along JFK Boulevard (from the Promenade to Landis Avenue) and widening of the sidewalks along each side of this corridor by 3 feet. The contractor, Fred M. Schiavone Construction, is in the process of completing the project. New energy efficient, decorative street lighting and bollard lighting has been installed. Verizon and Atlantic City Electric are in the process of relocating utility poles and placing some utilities underground. Once the utility work is complete, the paver sidewalks will be finished and hanging flower baskets and decorative banners will be installed on the light poles. The entire project is expected to be completed within the next month.
Construction of Decorative Seat Wall at Excursion Park – To improve the appearance of the park and provide for additional seating, the City is constructing a landscaping masonry seat wall along the eastern edge of the grounds. The wall will match the masonry work recently installed, and is expected to be complete within the next two weeks.
Demolition of Existing Library / Beach Tag Facility and Conversion to Parking Lot – The old Library / Beach Tag Building has been demolished. Following the clearing of the site, construction of concrete work will start next week, along with installation of underground conduit for the parking lot lighting. The parking lot lighting will match the lighting recently installed on JFK Boulevard from Landis to the Promenade. The project also includes landscaping and a 6-foot high fence around the perimeter. Completion of the new lot is scheduled for the first half of June, prior to Skimmer Weekend (June 16 and 17).Please see photos below
Construction of Welcome Center Addition to the Community Lodge and Renovations of the Existing Lodge Facility and Site – The contractor, R. Wilkinson and Sons, will be installing the new siding on the Lodge over the next two weeks and continuing with construction of the new Welcome Center addition. The building envelope for the addition is scheduled to be completed within the next month; with opening of the Welcome Center scheduled for mid-June. The new handicapped access ramps along with interior renovation work to the Community Lodge have been completed, and activities are once again taking place at the Lodge. The project is the culmination of several years of public discussion about the need for a Welcome Center, as well as the need for continued utilization of the current lodge facility. Please see photos below...
Improvements to T. I. Park – The contractor, Axios, Inc., is completing the installation of new decking on the ramps, stairs, and pavilion area. The pavilion has also been repainted. New aluminum railings are currently being installed, providing for compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Access to the park and pavilion remains closed in order to ensure public safety while construction takes place. The project is expected to be complete by the end of the month. Please see photos below...
Lagoon Dredging -- The current status of the project is as follows:
The contractor, Wickberg Marine Contracting of Belford, NJ, is continuing with construction of dike walls in the dredged material disposal area located west of the library, adjacent to Rio Grande lagoon (Rio Grande is along 47th Place). Dike construction has continued to be difficult, due to the condition of the soils, and this phase of the work is now expected to be completed by the first week of May.
Dredging of Rio Grande Lagoon and a portion of Rio Del Isole (along Venicean Road) will take place during May and into June; with measures taken to avoid disruption to boaters.
Dredging work will not take place over most of the summer and will re-commence after Labor Day, when the remainder of the lagoons will be dredged.
The lagoons to be dredged are as follows:
Rio Grande (south side of 47th Place)
Rio Delle Stelle (between 46th and 47th Place)
Rio Delle Luna (between 45th and 46th Place)
Rio Del Amore (between 44th Street and 45th Place)
Rio Delle Isole (along Venicean Road)
Rio Del Barche (between 43rd Place and 44th Street)
Rio Del Affare (between 42nd and 43rd Place)
Rio Delle Ponte (along Park Road on either side of 43rd Place)
The project provides for the ability of private property owners adjacent to the project area to enter into an agreement with the dredging contractor to dredge their private slips (at the private owner’s expense). In conjunction with the City project, properties at the above locations do have the required permit to perform private slip dredging.
As part of this project, consistent with the commitment to afford the opportunity to private property owners to have their slips dredged (at their own expense), the City continues to work with the Army Corps of Engineers and the NJ Department of Environmental Protection to obtain permits for previously identified areas of need, including the western side of Venicean Road (along the intracoastal waterway) and along Sounds Avenue in the area of 38th Street. Permits for these areas are not expected to be obtained until late summer or early fall, which will still allow time for these property owners to come to agreement with the dredging contractor to have their slips dredged prior to completion of the overall project.
Sewer and Road Reconstruction on Central Avenue (49th to 69th Street) – The project has been contracted to the firm of Lewandowski Construction Industries, Inc., of Waterford, NJ. The project will be performed in two phases: the first being from 49th to 63rd Street and the second phase from 63rd to 69th Street. The contractor will be required to cease construction operations for the summer season and start back up after Labor Day. Based on the current assessment of the project, utility work is expected to be completed from 63rd to 55th Street prior to the coming summer. The road surface will be temporarily restored to allow for vehicular travel with no detours or obstructions over the summer. Trench paving work from 63rd to 59th Street is scheduled to take place tomorrow; with the remaining trench paving to be performed before the project ceases operation for the summer.
The remainder of phase one (to 49th Street) along with phase two (from 63rd to 69th Street) will be completed in the fall; after which the entire roadway will be resurfaced. The project will provide for an upgraded sewer system and new road surface for the entire one mile stretch of roadway. This section of sewer has been problematic for years, with continuous maintenance issues; and this project will not only provide for appropriate sewage infrastructure, it will assist in decreasing the amount of ground water sent to the county sewage treatment plant, thus saving in unnecessary costs associated with the treatment of “infiltration” water. Please see photos below...
Utility Reconstruction on Landis Avenue (54th to 69th Street) – The project has been contracted to F.W.Shawl & Sons of Marmora, NJ, and will provide for water and sewer line replacement in advance of the County project to resurface Landis Avenue from 54th to 69th Street. To date, the contractor has installed hydrant services, water main extensions out of several intersections, and new water services to adjacent properties. Utility work will continue through the third week of May, with work suspended through the summer and then resumed in the fall. The County is scheduled to resurface Landis Avenue from 54th to 69th Street either in the fall of 2012 or spring of 2013.
Inflow and Infiltration (I & I) Remediation – The firm of Video Pipe Services, Inc. of Newfield, NJ, is in the process of performing work associated with internal repairs of sewer pipelines and manholes throughout the City. The portion of the project involving sealing of sanitary sewer mains has been substantially completed. The bulk of the remaining work involves internal lining of deteriorated sewer under Pleasure Avenue in the area of 35th to 39th Street. The Pleasure Avenue work is scheduled to be performed the week of April 23rd. The entire project is scheduled to be completed within the next month. The need for this project was indentified over the past several years through a comprehensive investigation and analysis of the City’s sewer system. Sewer systems are prone to both inflow (overland water entering the sewer system through manhole covers and other surface openings in the system) and infiltration (entry of groundwater into pipelines through cracks, deteriorated pipe, and pipe joints). The effects of I & I are symptoms of deterioration of the sewer system that must be corrected to avoid more problematic maintenance issues and potential failure of the sewer system. I & I is also costly, in that the City must pay for the unnecessary treatment of water that enters the sanitary sewer system. This is the first phase of a multi-year citywide sewer maintenance and improvement project that will ensure the continued viability of the City’s vital sewer infrastructure. As indicated above, this project is expected to be completed by April. The next phase of I & I work will involve replacement of sewer lines that cannot be corrected through internal, “no-dig” repairs, as are being performed in this phase. As those projects are engineered and prepared for bidding and construction, we will provide updates on the specific details of the projects.
Utility Reconstruction, Various Streets – The project includes replacement of deteriorated underground utilities (water and sewer) in several streets, as part of the City’s comprehensive road and utility program. At the April 10th City Council meeting, the council authorized award of a construction contract for the project to Garden State General Construction, Inc., of Rio Grande, NJ, in the amount of $607,653.92. Garden State was the lowest bidder of the eight firms that submitted bids for the project. The work is scheduled to be performed partially in the spring, with a summer hiatus, then completed in the fall. Following utility work, the streets will receive new surface paving. The following streets are included in this project:
1. 50th Street, Landis Avenue to Promenade
2. 51st Street, Landis Avenue to Promenade
3. 60th Street, Landis Avenue to Central Avenue
4. 43rd Place street end with guide rail barrier
5. 42nd Street, Landis Avenue to Promenade
6. 79th Street, Landis Avenue to Central Avenue
7. 60th Street, Landis Avenue to Beach End
JFK Boulevard Reconstruction, from Bridge to Landis Avenue (NO CHANGE FROM PREVIOUS UPDATE) – The County has been working with the City for design of the project to reconstruct and reconfigure JFK Boulevard from the Sea Isle Bridge to Landis Avenue. The project limits also include reconstruction of Landis Avenue from JFK Boulevard to 40th Street. The project scope will include the addition of widened sidewalks, decorative lighting, streetscape improvements and landscaping, drainage improvements, and elevation of the road surface which will assist during times of flooding. The County Engineer and the design engineering firm of Urban Engineers (which is under contract to the County), along with the City Engineer, made a presentation on the JFK Boulevard project on March 7, 2012 in council chambers, at which time those in attendance were informed of the project details and the proposed timing of the project. The meeting was attended by approximately 30 members of the public and the media, with the opportunity for questions and concerns to be raised. The engineers addressed issues relative to drainage, traffic, the proposed elevation of the road surface, changes to the road configuration, and the new streetscape. The project involves federal funding, and the next step is for the County to obtain authorization from federal and state agencies to proceed to bidding. If authorization is received, the County will put the project out to bid by July in order to award a contract for a fall 2012 construction start. In this event, construction will take place between October 2012 and May 2013.
Paving of 43rd Street from Landis Avenue to Park Road – The project involves final resurfacing of the street, along with associated replacement of some of the adjacent curb and sidewalk. The work has been contracted to the firm of Arawak Paving Co., Inc., of Hammonton, NJ, in the amount of $98,500. This paving project will finalize a complete reconstruction of this section of 43rd Street, which previously received new water and sewer lines. The project is scheduled to be completed prior to Memorial Day weekend.
Turtle Sculptures (NO CHANGE FROM PREVIOUS UPDATE) – The City previously authorized the acquisition of two signature turtle sculptures, one for placement at the JFK and Pleasure Avenue corner of Excursion Park and the other at the north-end entrance of Sea Isle. The sculpture at Excursion Park will be approximately six feet in length and the north-end sculpture will be approximately three feet in length. The sculptures are expected to be delivered to the City this month.
County Drainage Improvements, Park Road – The County has contracted with RTW Construction to perform several drainage improvement projects in Sea Isle City. RTW has completed underground drainage work on Park Road and is now mobilized at 79th Street, where they will perform replacement of deteriorated storm sewer between Landis and Central Avenue. This work is scheduled to be completed within the next two weeks. Following completion of the drainage work at 79th Street, additional drainage work is scheduled to be performed on Landis Avenue between 24th and 25th Street.
VOTE FOR SEA ISLE CITY:
The 2012 New Jersey Top Ten Beaches Survey is now underway – and Sea Isle City is one of the hottest towns on the list! Conducted by the New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium and The Coastal Research Center at the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey, 2012 is the 5th year for the annual survey, which rates 48 beach communities from Sandy Hook to Cape May. In 2010, Sea Isle City ranked 5th among the state’s beach towns, and in 2011 Sea Isle City was 4th! You can let the entire Garden State know that Sea Isle City is NUMBER ONE, by casting your vote online at www.njtoptenbeaches.org . Voting is fast, easy and free – and it will help everyone learn that Sea Isle City is wonderful shore community.
LIBRARY CARD INFORMATION:
The Sea Isle City branch of the Cape May County Library, located at 48th Street and Central Avenue, is open to the public. However, visitors must have an active library membership card to use the facility’s computers, rent a movie or borrow a book. To obtain a library card, local residents simply need to show proof of residency; and those who own homes in Sea Isle City and live elsewhere must show a local tax or utility bill or some other proof of home-ownership. Visitors (weekly or seasonal) can obtain a temporary card by showing a rental lease and providing proper identification that includes their home address.
The library is open 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Monday and Wednesday, and 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday (closed Sunday). For more information, phone 263-7301 or visit www.cmclibrary.org.
DID YOU KNOW:
--The next City Council meeting is Tuesday, April 24, at 10:00 a.m., in Council Chambers on the second level of the S.I.C. Public Safety Building, 233 JFK Boulevard. The public is invited to attend.
--The S.I.C. Environmental Commission’s Annual Spring Beach Clean-Up is Saturday, April 21, 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon. Families, individuals, scout troops, civic clubs and all other volunteers are needed to make this important event a success. No pre-registration is required – just check-in on April 21 at JFK and the Promenade. All volunteers will be treated to a buffet luncheon immediately following the clean-up on April 21, courtesy of Mike’s Seafood in Fish Alley (263-2081).
--The owners of all Sea Isle City rental properties are required to purchase Rental Permits for each house, apartment and condo rental. 2012 Rental Permits should be purchased at the Municipal Clerk’s Office at City Hall by May 1 for $150.00 each. The late fee to purchase a rental permits is $175.00 (263-4461, ext. 200).
--A Golf Weekend is being hosted by the Sea Isle City Chamber of Commerce and Revitalization on May 4, 5 & 6, featuring discounts at area golf courses, restaurant specials, lodging deals, gifts and prizes (firstname.lastname@example.org, www.seaislechamber.com or 263-9090).
--The Police Unity Tour will be in Sea Isle City on Thursday, May 10, at the Public Safety Building, 233 JFK Boulevard, 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. (www.policeunitytourchap2.com).
--The Association of Surf Anglers will host the Karl Boehret Surf Fishing Tournament in Sea Isle City on Saturday, May 12, 7:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (642-1427, www.asaconline.org).
--A City-Wide Yard Sale, hosted by the SIC Chamber of Commerce & Revitalization, will take place on Saturday, May 12, 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Clean-out your garage, empty your attic and add your home to the official list of participating properties; no fee is required to participate (263-9090, www.seaislechamber.com).
--A Mother’s Day Shopping Event, hosted by the SIC Chamber of Commerce & Revitalization, will be held May 12 -13 (263-9090, www.seaislechamber.com).
--An Introduction to Genealogy will be presented at the Sea Isle City Library, 48th Street and Central Avenue, on Friday, May 18, 2:00 to 3:30 p.m. Information about Ancestry.com and other genealogy resources will be presented by Clare Hughes Bebbington. No registration is required. For more information, phone SIC Historical Society President Mike Stafford (609-743-5980).
--The SIC Garden Club’s 2012 Flower Sale is Saturday, May 19, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., at the Public School, 47th and Park Road. Many varieties of flowers (in flats and in pots) will be on sale (263-1157, email@example.com).
--Sea Isle City’s Community Day is Saturday, May 19, 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at the Community Lodge, JFK Boulevard and Park Road. During Community Day, residents and visitors can speak with City department heads, chat with volunteers from local organizations and learn all about what’s happening in town. There will also be a free shredding event taking place, sponsored by First Bank of Sea Isle City. Each household can bring two “banker’s boxes” or smaller containers filled with personal documents for shredding (proof of SIC home ownership or residency is required). Plus, there will be a City Council meeting at 10:00 a.m. in Council Chambers and a Public Bike Auction on Community Day (263-4461, ext.245).
--The Environmental Commission’s Annual Turtle Party to support Beachcomber Guided Tours is Sunday, May 20, 6:00 p.m., at the Lobster Loft Restaurant, 42nd and the Bay (263-9643).
--The S.I.C. Beach Tag Office has moved to a temporary location in a mobile office on 42nd Place (near the Lobster Loft Restaurant, across from the Municipal Marina). The Beach Tag Office will move to its permanent home inside the new Welcome Center later this year. The office is currently open seven days a week, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Look for the “Open” flag out front! (263-1771).
--Free 2012 Veterans Beach Tags are now available to any United States military veteran. Veterans Beach Tags are seasonal tags that will grant access to any of Sea Isle’s beaches during the summer months. These tags are only for the use of Vets (not their families). To obtain a 2012 Veterans Beach Tag, bring your DD214 Discharge Form to VFW Post 1963, JFK Boulevard and Cini Avenue (adjacent to the Sea Isle Bridge), on Wednesdays, 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.; Fridays, 2:00 to 6:00 p.m.; and Saturdays and Sundays, 2:00 to 5:00 p.m. (263-1711).
--America’s Active Duty Military Personnel can use Sea Isle’s beaches for free by visiting the Beach Tag Office between Memorial Day Weekend and Labor Day and providing a current active military duty identification card to receive a 100% discount on Sea Isle City’s beach tags (263-1771).
--Sea Isle City now offers online view and payment options for municipal property tax bills and water/sewer utility bills (visit www.seaislecitynj.us and click on the "Tax & Utility Payment Center" icon at the bottom of the homepage). You can mail-in a payment as always, or pay online through your checking account, credit card or debit card. Please Note: Online viewing is free; however a convenience charge will be applied if you pay your bills online.
--Bulk Trash will be collected on the following days: 1st Thursday of Month from 1st to 44th Street; 2nd Thursday of Month from 45th to 70th Street; 3rd Thursday of Month from 71st to 94th Street. Brush and branches will be collected on all streets on the 4th Thursday of Month. A city-wide Bulk Trash collection will take place on June 7.
--The City of Sea Isle City will gladly arrange a Welcome Home Ceremony for any members of the military as they return to town. To arrange a “Hero’s Welcome” for your favorite Sailor, Marine, Soldier, Airman, National Guard or Coast Guard service member, phone Mayor Desiderio’s Office (263-4461, ext. 245) or Commander Chick Haines at VFW Post 1963 (263-1711). You can also find a “Welcome Home Ceremony” application online at www.seaislecitynj.us (via the “Quick Links” and “Downloadable Forms” tabs).
--The Search is on for Cape May County’s Outstanding Senior Citizen of the Year and Outstanding Organization of the Year. The citizen nominee must be a resident of Cape May County over the age of 60 and have contributed time to helping others. The Organization of the Year must be made up of volunteers who have contributed to the community and can be made up of seniors helping any age group or a younger group helping seniors. The County has extended the deadline to submit nominees until Friday, April 20, 2012. Mail nominees to the Department of Aging and Disabilities Services, Social Services Building, 4005 Route 9, South, Rio Grande, N.J. 08242, Attention Carol Lennox (609-886-2784).
--The 2012 Senior Jamboree, hosted by the Cape May County Department of Aging and Disability Services in honor of Older American’s Month, is Thursday, May 3, 2012, at 10:00 a.m. inside the Avalon Community Center, 30th & the Beach in Avalon. This year, the theme is “ALOHA.” There will be live entertainment, dancing, and a free lunch served. Plus, awards will be given to the “Senior of the Year” and the “Organization of the Year.” This free event is open to all Cape May County residents age 60 and over (609- 886-2784).
--Summer Recreation Registration will begin on May 14, 2012. Registration forms will be available online at www.seaislecitynj.us or at the Recreation Service Building, 6108 Central Avenue. Forms MUST be postmarked by June 9, 2012. Registration is subject to availability (263-0050).
--The pre-season cost for 2012 Seasonal Beach Tags is $20 per tag through May 15, 2012. Starting May 16, 2012 seasonal tags will cost $25 per tag (263-1771).
--A Red Cross Blood Drive will take place on Thursday, June 7, 1:00 to 7:00 p.m. at the Sea Isle City United Methodist Church, JFK Boulevard and Park Road. Blood donors are needed (263-8025).