Deal mayor faces backlash for providing free beach access

Posted: Updated:
DEAL -

The mayor of Deal is facing some backlash after he said that homeowners with beachfront property won’t have to pay for beach badges.

Woodbridge-based attorney Andrew Chambarry says that he grew up going to Deal beaches. He says that the plan by Mayor Sam Cohen is illegal.

“It discriminates against nonresidents and it discriminates against those not lucky enough to live on the beach,” Chambarry says.

Chambarry sent a cease-and-desist letter to Mayor Cohen reminding him that everyone who visits the borough’s beaches must pay the same amount. Chambarry says that Deal has a history of access violations.

“This is just one more aspect of larger cases where discrimination against nonresidents is their main goal,” he says.

Chambarry previously threatened to sue the borough over a proposal to charge only nonresidents for parking.

Mayor Cohen tells News 12 New Jersey that the free beach access only applies to a handful of homeowners who already have private beach entrances. He says that he believes it doesn’t make sense to charge them.   

Cohen says that if the plan is proven to be illegal, then he will deal with it. He says that until then, there are no plans to change the policy.  

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