Destroyed Homes on Toms River Barrier Island Creating Unforeseen Questions

Houses moved to other lots by the devastating water and wind of Hurricane Sandy

Your house, rocked from its foundation by the powerful surge of Hurricane Sandy, manages to float down the street and make a right turn up the block.

Or, your undersized lot now has three of your neighbors' homes sitting on it.

The questions that arise from this nightmare are mind-boggling, but still deserve an answer, said Toms River Office of Emergency Management Director Paul Daley.

As his daily tasks shift from coordinating emergency response to now facilitating the layers of administration for FEMA and Toms River, Daley gets many very specific questions on disaster response thrown his way.

But in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, so many questions were unfathomable.

One homeowner returned to assess damages to her Ortley Beach home and found three other homes had crashed into her property, Daley said.

"She can't get a hold of any of the homeowners," Daley said. "What does that person do?"

With more than 225 properties severely damaged in Ortley Beach, there's also more than 3,000 residents displaced, said township officials previously.

In some cases homes were washed away, sending oceanfront properties into a mess of rubble into Barnegat Bay.

A schedule in place through Dec. 7 has barrier island residents alternating specific days of access depending on their street address. For example, Dec. 3 has residents who live in the middle section of Ortley Beach (Washington Avenue to Rt. 35 South) allowed in to their homes starting 8 a.m.

And yet the damage is such that Daley has received questions wondering when you have access if your street address is in one section but your house was floating into another.

"I've had people call and ask 'My address is in a section that has access on Tuesday but my house is now located in a section that has access on Wednesday. When do I go in?'" Daley said. "Figuring that out is really happening."

Pat S. December 03, 2012 at 03:35 PM
I am a permanent resident of Ortley. Anyone who has not seen the devastation first hand cannot even imagine what has happened there. I feel lucky that my house, though severely water damaged, is at least standing. I have 4 friends who went back to nothing but empty lots where their houses once were. Life will go on but our lives are changed forever.
Irina December 03, 2012 at 05:10 PM
I have a huge question...Why is it when people are down, here comes Toms River to profit on their misery? $46.00 electrical permits to get reconnected is just plain DISGUSTING. I heard the surrounding communities have waived this fee. I Hope We the taxpayers/voters of Toms River are keeping track of this crap.
Cesare Passarelli December 03, 2012 at 05:33 PM
i thought it was waived??
shorefriend December 03, 2012 at 05:49 PM
Pat, OMG I was there this weekend helping out with some permanent residents!! I hope to never see such destruction ever again. There is a house in the middle of 3rd ave
Irina December 03, 2012 at 06:02 PM
I don't know if it was waived. I just know of someone who went to the township this morning and he was charged $46 for each one.
June December 03, 2012 at 06:22 PM
Pat S I live in the Bay Shore section of Toms River which was also destroyed. My house is fixable but I feel the same. When I pass my beautiful community and no one is there is is very sad. You are right, EVERYTHING has been changed forever. I only pray that my neighbors can all return. I miss all of them.
Mark December 03, 2012 at 06:37 PM
The general permit fees are being waived by Toms River Township, the electrical & plumbing permit fees are still in effect. This is totally unacceptably and the Ortley Beach Voters & Taxpayers Association and other Toms River Barrier Island Associations have to get this changed. Its disgusting, disgraceful and totally unacceptable and an example of a dysfunctional, inept and incompetent governing body! In addition: * Why doesn't the Township have a mobile command center on the barrier island every single day to handle permits, tax appeals, answer general questions like what the process of succeeding from a dysfunctional government entity? Perhaps this command center can have toilet facilites that taxpayers can use! Anyone see Ward 1 Councilwoman Maria Maruca and Township Mayor Kellerhar?
Michael Napoletano December 03, 2012 at 08:33 PM
Even if they waive the charges, they will just add it to our taxes. Hey now and pay later. Mike napoletano
Ajv December 03, 2012 at 10:35 PM
Are there any bars open? We need to pound some beers oh yeah!!!
Landes December 04, 2012 at 03:01 AM
The fee has been waived, check out the township website.
Debbie Bury December 04, 2012 at 01:38 PM
Pat S, I hope you are the Pat who goes to first ave beach, my husband and I have been trying to find out how you are. We are gary and debbie we know that u live in ortley all year around u any your family have been in our prayers. I hope this is you, and if not we are glad that your home is still there. Ortley will never bethe same everytime i go in to clean up i come out overr the bridge with tears in my eyes. But i know in my heart we will build new memories.
Ajv December 04, 2012 at 05:05 PM
I'm pounding beers in ortley right now!!!
Debbie Bury December 04, 2012 at 06:12 PM
Good for you enjoy remember no toilets heeeeeeee
Ajv December 04, 2012 at 09:58 PM
I'm peeing in a bucket, got 13 more cold ones oh yeah!!!
Right Turn December 04, 2012 at 10:09 PM
We are in Green Island. My ranch was destroyed, as in had 3 feet of water thru-out. Not even sure if we want to go back. I am sure at this point I owe the mortgage company way more then it is worth in the destroyed condition it is in now. Maybe let them worry about the repairs, because it destroyed the entire ranch inside. everyhing was ruined from the floors, walls, all the electric, my elec box was cut, the heating system, one side of the ranch looks dislodged, its a shell now inside. Not sure what we are going to do.
charlotte December 09, 2012 at 04:34 AM
The electrical permit was waived after a lot of people paid them. Will they be sending refunds?
charlotte December 09, 2012 at 04:35 AM
Ajv - reporting in from where buddy?
charlotte December 09, 2012 at 04:40 AM
Completely agree with the mobile command center. The beach should succeed from the mainland and enter into shared services agreements for coverage. It would seem logical that it could be done cheaper than being the piggy bank of the towns/ county. Are there any young attorneys out there that want to change the status quo?


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