In spite of the fact that we are still recovering from the disaster that was Sandy, there is now a bill before the General Assembly, A3933, that if passed will allow the development of multi-unit residential, motels and hotels on piers on the Hudson River in what is identified by the new FEMA maps as High Hazard Zone. Remarkably, a companion bill recently cleared the Senate by a wide majority. Never mind that storms are becoming both more intense and more frequent. Our legislators throw caution to the wind by turning a blind eye to a clear and present danger. History is replete with the consequences of building where we shouldn’t: Japan’s Fukushima nuclear reactors, California’s mud slides, Pompeii’s Mt. Vesuvius, New Orleans’s Hurricane Katrina, the Mississippi’s raging waters and our own storm racked Jersey Shore.
I can understand the Legislature bowing to political pressures to rebuild where people lost homes and businesses that have been there for what seems like forever. But I am dumbfounded seeing our elected representatives under pressure from powerful developers fall over them selves to open the High Hazard Zone to new construction. This is an example of the worst kind of special interest legislation, for it puts people’s lives and property in jeopardy and the public treasury at risk.
President Fund for a Better Waterfront