By this point I hope all of you have had the opportunity to familiarize yourselves with the recommendations made to Long Beach by CP&E, the coastal engineering firm the city hired to study us and help prepare us for storm protection. If not, I have attached a document to explain it here: Explanation of CP and E pdf
The city keeps saying they are going to make sure we are rebuilt safer, stronger, and smarter than before, but they are not saying how this is going to be done. They are not allowing residents to publicly ask questions. We need to make sure our concerns are heard and that decisions about how we rebuild Long Beach are not made behind closed doors.
We have prepared a letter for residents to copy, paste, and send as an email to City Managaer Schnirman and all the members of the council. The letter can also be printed and sent by mail.
Please consider sending this letter ASAP. Pass it on to friends. Have every member of your household send it. Feel free to make changes if necessary or prepare your own letter if you prefer. We have to show the city that we are serious, we are informed, and that we will not settle for anything but the best when it comes to rebuilding Long Beach.
Copy and paste the letter below into an email and send it to the following email addresses:
Or send a copy to each council person and the city manager at 1 West Chester St.
Make sure to add your name and address at the bottom.
Thank you everyone!
Below is the letter:
Dear City Manager Schnirman and Members of the Council,
I am writing to you today as a concerned resident of Long Beach. It is crucial that we tackle the rebuilding process with the long-term best interest of our city and the barrier island as a whole in mind. I am aware of and agree with the recommendations made to the city by Coastal Planning and Engineering. I want to make it clear that I believe the following should be included in the rebuilding process:
1. Incorporate a stationary storm protection barrier, or wall, into the new boardwalk.
2. Extend this barrier through the East End to Lido and through the West End to East Atlantic Beach.
3. Raise all bulkheads along the bay front to a minimum of nine feet.
4. Install flex tide valves into the drainage system of the bay and develop a plan to properly maintain this system.
I would also like to note that while I support a project being conducted by the Army Corps of Engineers, I do not feel that a sand dune alone provides sufficient protection for the ocean side of the island. It certainly does not constitute a safer, smarter, and stronger Long Beach.
The lack of information regarding plans for rebuilding and protecting both the ocean and bay sides of the island has me concerned. I believe it is crucial for residents to have the opportunity to express concern, ask questions, and be privy to options the members of the council are considering.
I look forward to hearing back from you with information addressing my concerns. As a Long Beach resident I have put my trust in you to make decisions that are in my best interest. You are now aware of how I feel. I hope I will have the opportunity to further express my concerns and ask questions as we continue to move forward.
Of all the damage mitigation plans we knew of before the storm, none of them would have protected us. Now that the funds have been established we must work with our neighbors to make sure they are appropriated in our best interest. Now is the time for Long Beach leaders take the lead and create a forum in which all communities on the Long Beach barrier island work together. We will no doubt learn more and be more powerful by working with our neighbors as opposed to going it alone.