$1 settlement paves way for protective dunes along N.J. coast

Gov. Chris Christie has signed an executive order paving the way for the Army Corps or Engineers to build protective dunes along the 127-mile New Jersey coast.

The governor’s order follows settlement of a lawsuit filed by a Harvey Cedars couple who won a $375,000 jury award to compensate for the loss of their ocean view by the construction of a 22-foot-high dune.

The New Jersey Supreme Court reversed that award and ruled that the protection dunes provide must also be considered in determining the value of easements.

The settlement, which gives the couple $1 as compensation, sends a strong signal, said Chris Porrino, director of the New Jersey Division of Law.

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“The state and the locals will work together to take the easements that are necessary to get these projects built, and there are not going to be windfalls paid to the holdouts that remain,” Porrino said.

The state will begin immediately to coordinate legal action to get the easements.

Porrino said he’s not sure how long it will take to complete legal action to acquire the necessary easements to build the dunes.

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