January 8, 2013 - Today the Money Island Marina submitted an application to the New Jersey Green Acres program to sell its land back to the state. Other residents have also submitted similar applications. The 25 lots owned by the marina plus the 5 individual homeowners means that the state now has written offers to sell from a total of 30 lots on Money Island. This is about half of the total 'dry' land on Money Island.
December 8, 2012 - Money Island Marina reopened under new management, led by a team that includes local watermen and fishing enthusiasts. Bruce will continue as marina manager. Ron and his son Matt took over maintenance and repair responsibilities. The Pews will supply bait. Tristan will lead customer service and Tony handles management duties. A local couple will help with retail tackle and fishing supplies. The company is still looking for two associates to handle the soft-shell crab operation when the facility rebuild is complete later in 2013. The group held an informal open house today to meet with old and new customers. The unusually warm December open house finished with a barbecue at the bait shack. Members of the management team and a few customers noticed that the renewed energy and enthusiasm signaled a positive change for the marina and the year ahead.
October 28, 2012 - The morning full moon high tide inundated Money Island Road and Bayview Avenue to depths up to about 16 inches. The roads were impassible by car for about 3 hours but could be travelled with an elevated truck.
October 20, 2012 - A copy of the 2011 summary report of Money Island code violations was released to residents. Underwater septic systems appear to be at the top of the list of problem issues.
July 20, 2012 - The Department of Justice announced the convictions of multiple defendants on felony charges related to fishing operations that took more oysters from the Delaware Bay than allowed. The convictions followed an early morning raid on September 9 last year at Money Island with multiple arrests and the seizures of boats involved in the crimes.
Employees of Reeves Brothers and Shellrock LLC, all of Port Norris, N.J., were convicted following a 7-week trial in Camden NJ on charges including creating false records, trafficking in illegally possessed oysters, obstructing the Food and Drug Administration's regulation of public health and safety, and conspiring to commit those crimes and obstruct justice, federal authorities said.
Also convicted were officials from Harbor House Seafood in Seaford, Del. Prosecutors say Reeves Brothers over-harvested its quota between 2004 and 2009 and Harbor House helped hide the catches. Federal authorities say the extra oysters had a value of more than $600,000.
The oyster population is dangerously depleted in the Delaware Bay with less than 1% of the population of live oysters than once grew in the bay. Besides being a food source, oysters are one of two species that filter excess nutrient runoff from the water that results in depleted oxygen and "dead zones" in a growing portion of waters. Both the state and federal government consider oyster population management to be a high priority issue.
All of the companies continue to operate at Money Island.
June 10, 2012 - Cumberland County prosecutor 's office announced plans to appeal the dismissal of drunk driving charges against former money Island resident Roger Mauro Jr. Mauro was facing multiple charges and a possible third conviction for a 2006 vehicular assault on another Money Island resident. The assault charges were dropped in 2011 due to a procedural error by the prosecutor's office and the other eight charges including drunk driving and failure to take a sobriety test were referred back to local court. Mauro successfully argued that the length of time violated his constitutional right to a speedy trial before Judge Fineman in May 2012. The decision to dismiss charges sparked outrage in the community.
The prosecutor's office says that long trial preparation delays are necessary especially when the defendant is offered multiple probationary periods as in this case. Prosecutor Jennifer Webb McRae announced the department's decision to appeal the ruling in a letter to the victim on June 6, 2012.
Judge Fineman's decision has not yet been published. A copy of the trial brief is available online.
December 13, 2011 - Over assessments continue to contribute to the local community's depressed property values. Current assessments are estimated to run 300% to 600% higher than actual property values, meaning that Money Island property owners pay a significantly larger portion of the township's taxes than if the properties were properly assessed. A typical property is assessed at $110,000, for example, has an actual current market value of about $22,000. No solution is in sight. (more...)