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Early February Date Announced for Ortley Beach Repopulation

Ortley Beach has not yet been allowed to repopulate because of utility and road issues

Some Ortley Beach residents will be allowed to move back to their homes in early February under a plan announced Tuesday by Toms River Mayor Thomas Kelaher.

The township has prepared and submitted a letter to the Ocean County Office of Emergency Management requesting that the state of emergency declared for Hurricane Sandy be lifted and Ortley residents with all utilities in service at their properties be allowed to return home at 8 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 4. 

"Through meetings with New Jersey American Water, Toms River Municipal Utilities Authority, New Jersey Natural Gas and JCP&L, Mayor Kelaher has been assured that there service will be restored for most properties in the west and middle sections of Ortley by Feb. 4," reads a statement released by the township. "Portions of the eastern section of Ortley Beach from Route 35 north to the ocean may not ready for full service, although the water company has stated that there is potable drinking water for all homes that are connected to NJAW."

Some utility repairs continue to be made, though most work is coming to completion. According to the township, most of the west and middle zones are ready for sewage flow. The system is operational even though work continues on rebuilding three major pumping stations.

Areas of Ortley that can safely accept gas service have been re-pressurized. Repair to certain isolated gas mains in Ortley and resetting the meters will be complete by Feb. 1, with the exception of some properties east of Route 35 North.

JCP&L is working with the township on its master plan to rebuild their infrastructure for portions of Ortley east of Route 35 North; however the utility has finished restoring power to properties in Ortley that can safely accept service. 

Township officials said that residents should make sure they have had the proper inspections before their utility services are turned on and are advised to contact the providers with any reconnection issues. 

Kelaher said that residents should check with the township website's Ortley section to ensure they find the correct information regarding returning home. 

Other barrier island residents were allowed to return home on Jan. 4, but officials said Ortley is not ready for full-time residents until utility and road repairs are completed. 

Ortley Joe January 15, 2013 at 11:31 PM
Well I guess someone had to be left for last by Toms River.
anthony esposito January 15, 2013 at 11:52 PM
I think the real story is the ongoing POLICE State in Mantoloking. That Boro has high jacket State Highway 35 N for its own purposes. That Boro lost half of its housing, whats left worth stealing and whats really going on there that they want to keep the citizens of New Jersey from passing through that one mile stretch of 35
BKS January 16, 2013 at 12:54 AM
I think it's more to avoid the Point Pleasant to Seaside drive. I took a drive through Seaside last weekend (I am in OB II) and it was PACKED with visitors. I went 3 blocks in and made a U-turn.
Scott Wright January 16, 2013 at 11:19 AM
Could they at least open it for a morning commute and evening commute? Close it durning the day if you must but allow people to shop and eat in PP at night.
shorefriend January 16, 2013 at 02:38 PM
I'm ready to pack, my 3 pairs of socks, 2 pants, 4 shirts and the rest of what fits into a laundry basket, because that's all I took when I left, expecting to spend 1 or 2 nights away...... and move back!!!
Mark January 16, 2013 at 03:09 PM
I guess that means TR will be going into overdrive to prepare for that long awaited glorious February 4th day? I'm sure they're in the process of: 1) Having a Mobile Town Hall Vehicle set up shop in Orttey Beach 2) Getting street sweepers to clean the streets 3) Arranging for more police patrols 4) removing the garbage from 35N and worrying about FEMA payments later 5) cleaning all the sewers 6) Re enforcing the current inadequate dunes
PhilApap January 16, 2013 at 08:11 PM
Why can't tom's river hire the Army corps of engineers to replace the dunes in Ortley. The dunes built by them in Avalon,Cape May etc. Helped tremendously during the storm. These areas had little or no damage. That is a great testimonial to these engineers.
Johnjcpa January 16, 2013 at 10:19 PM
The army Corps of Engineers doesn't actually do the work, they hire contractors to do the actual work. Before they can start building dunes, they will need to get enough sand by dredging. I doubt there are enough contractors available to do a third of the work needed on the East Coast this year, how they determine where to start first will be based on a lot of factors, but not having easements will not help.
PJ Ortley January 17, 2013 at 03:53 AM
If you don't understand why the Army Corps of Engineers has not been asked to rebuild the beaches in NJ you must be living on another planet. Just read any newspaper or ask any Ortley beach resident. Toms River (and all towns) require all beachfront property owners to sign an easement - otherwise neither TR nor the Corps is allowed to work on private property. So far TR and the property owners are miles apart on any agreement.
A Resident January 17, 2013 at 04:37 AM
Mantoloking still worried about non-residents accessing the multiple unsecured houses.
Michael Capo January 17, 2013 at 05:38 AM
Everyone needs to understand the ridiculous conditions Toms River attaches to their "easement". They want the private beaches to give them their beaches but they insist the associations continue to pay for insurance, maintenance and lifeguards. Would anyone in their right mind open their backyard to the general public and agree to continue to pay the maintenance and insurance an continue to assume all the liabilities attendant to the public accessing your back yard? Toms River only tells half the story.

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