Gov. Christie signs order paving the way for protective dunes, including use of eminent domain

Gov. Chris Christie signed an order Wednesday that will make it easier for Shore towns to build protective dunes and use eminent domain to do

Gov. Chris Christie signed an order Wednesday that will make it easier for Shore towns to build protective dunes and use eminent domain to do so.

Gov. Chris Christie signed an order Wednesday that will make it easier for Shore towns to build protective dunes and use eminent domain to do so. (9/26/13)

MANTOLOKING - Gov. Chris Christie signed an order Wednesday that will make it easier for Shore towns to build protective dunes and use eminent domain to do so.

Christie has repeatedly called out local property owners who have refused to sign agreements allowing the dune project to begin.

The news was well received in Mantoloking, where every single home was either damaged or destroyed by Superstorm Sandy.

"Relieved, it's been a lot of work. There's been a lot of give and take between us and the township but I think the deal is decent," says Pat Suriani, of the Surf Cottage Homeowner's Association.

Chris Nelson says the order is only a step in a much longer process. "It's not relief, relief is going to come when the Army Corps Project actually starts pumping sand."

Nelson says the project is necessary not only for Mantoloking, but other shore towns as well. "It's for the entire barrier island, the homes that are on it, but it protects the folks behind as well."

Gov. Christie's order came only a short time after a ruling in an older case regarding dunes and eminent domain. Originally a couple had been awarded more than $370,000 when protective dunes went up near their home and their view of the ocean was ruined. However, the state Supreme Court overturned that ruling, saying the dunes added value to their home and awarded them only one dollar.

The dune system will eventually run along all 127 miles of New Jersey's shoreline.

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