The borough of Manasquan in New Jersey has told beachfront homeowners they have until Wednesday night to shovel debris-filled sand onto borough-managed property if they want the town to clean it up, but some homeowners say it's impossible to dig out that quickly from the Sandy damage.
Jersey Shore Town Sets Deadline to Move "Dirty" Sand
Homeowners in Manasquan have until Wednesday to remove debris-filled sand from their property if they want the town to clean it up
The Wednesday deadline is so bidders know how much sand they'll have to clean and the winning contractor can get started right away, according to borough administrator Joseph DeIorio.
Although a borough advisory warns of fines, DeIorio said the fines would only kick in if homeowners dump their dirty sand on town property after the expensive sifting operation begins.
"We have a lot of competition around us -- Point Pleasant, Belmar, surrounding communities -- so we have to make sure we can get the beach ready by Memorial Day," DeIorio said.
But many homes and garages are still bulging with debris-laced sand, and the rush by the borough to get it cleaned up is leaving many homeowners behind.
Contractor Shawn Shumway works with five of those homeowners. He used a Bobcat excavator to take dirty sand for one homeowner and put it where the borough wants it.
But the other houses are in such bad shape that he can't get a Bobcat in to lift the sand, and he's run into red tape trying to get demolition permits.
"To properly manipulate all that sand, I've got to get between these houses and bring sand that's inaccessible onto the beach," said Shumway.
Councilman Joseph Bossone said the borough is trying to clarify what homeowners need to do.
"We have our own ordinances in town, and then when the state comes out with something else we have to abide by that," Bossone said, adding that FEMA rules can add yet more complexity to the situation.