City adopts regulations that enhance enforcement at raucous N.J. beach

A portion of the Cove Recreation Area in Brigantine. (Google image)

A portion of the Cove Recreation Area in Brigantine. (Google image)

City officials in a Jersey Shore town have adopted regulations that enhance enforcement at a popular beach after a slew of quality of life issues last summer.

The Brigantine City Council unanimously passed an ordinance Wednesday that provides law enforcement and local officials more power at the Cove Recreation Area beach, located where the Absecon Inlet meets the back bay at extreme southwestern edge of the municipality.

The beach’s popularity is driven by its natural surroundings, views of Atlantic City, unique location along two waterways, and the ability to drive vehicles onto the sand and anchor boats along the shoreline.

But last summer was marred by episodes of excessive trash, alcohol consumption, fights, and even a bomb threat that spurred an evacuation of the beach during the July 4 holiday weekend, prompting the city to take formal action.

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The newly adopted ordinance allows the City Manager to restrict or limit beach access if there’s a concern for “the healthy, safety and welfare of individuals” until the issue is resolved.

The regulation also prohibits coolers larger than 24 inches in width, length, or height and/or with a capacity greater than 36 quarts unless a city official inspects the container to ensure “the general health, safety and welfare” of beachgoers.

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