Tices Shoal boaters can purchase a season pass to enter Island Beach State Park

     Tices Shoal in August 2014. (Photo: Justin Auciello/JSHN)

    Tices Shoal in August 2014. (Photo: Justin Auciello/JSHN)

    The state Department of Environmental Protection has released additional information regarding the controversial plan to charge for access from the Barnegat Bay to Island Beach State Park

    For the first time, boaters who access the park from the popular Tices Shoal, a shallow area in the bay where boaters congregate during the warm months, will pay a fee when lifeguards are on duty as they enter the A-7 beach area along Fisherman’s Walkway, the state announced last month. 

    Boaters will not be charged to anchor at Tices Shoal and remain in the bay, which is open to public access in accordance with the Public Trust Doctrine.

    Officials say that the fee, previously announced as a blanket $3 charge, will fund the inaugural season of lifeguards at the A-7 beach, which they say is necessary to ensure public safety, as well as additional state services. 

    There’s now more clarity on the new regulation. 

    According to a state release, boaters who seek to enter the swimming area from Tices Shoal can purchase a season pass. 

    Available for purchase at the Island Beach State Park Gate House 24 hours a day, the laminated yearly state park pass is $50 for state residents and $75 for non-residents and will allow up to six walk-in visitors per day. 

    “The State Park Service will not have the pass available to purchase at the A-7 walkway. Therefore, all Tices Shoal boating visitors who want to purchase the pass must purchase it at the park gatehouse ahead of time,” the release said. 

    New Jersey State Park senior and disability pass holders can also enter the swimming area with up to five additional visitors without an additional fee.

    All other boaters seeking to access the beach will pay a $3 fee. 

    Leashed pets can enter the A-7 area but must stay out of the immediate swimming zone, according to a clarification posted on the New Jersey State Parks, Forests & Historic Sites Facebook page

    Click here to read the just issued state Q&A on the new regulation. 

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