Toms River Township officials are readying a new round of beach repairs in Ortley Beach following the Memorial Day Weekend storm that pummeled the oceanfront, resulting in damage to beach entrances, walkways and a vast reduction in beach area.
The township council is set to approve a measure that will expand a contract with Earle Asphalt, which was hired to perform beach repairs in the wake of the Feb. 1-2 nor’easter which also caused significant damage to Ortley Beach, however due to cost savings found elsewhere, no additional funds will be required to be dedicated to the latest round. On the contrary, the measure calls for a reduction in the contract awarded to Earle earlier this year.
Heavy equipment is already staged south of the Surf Club property, along the boardwalk, in preparation for the repair effort. The plan, as proposed, calls for additional sand deliveries to the beach.
Earle had originally been awarded a contract for beach repairs worth $438,525, but the township declined to utilize a portion of those funds that were dedicated to fencing repairs. Instead, officials utilized the services of a pre-appointed fencing contractor usually used for township parks to provide replacement fencing at a significantly lower price than Earle had bid. This enabled the township to realize a net reduction of $26,165 in the Earle contract – which includes the second round of repairs.
The total contract with Earle is expected to drop from $438,525, as originally authorized, to $412,360, even after additional sand is trucked in.
Township officials are expected to provide details on the status of the beachfront at a council meeting scheduled for Wednesday night. Mayor Maurice “Mo” Hill has previously told Shorebeat that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which designed and engineered the dunes and beachfront, are expected to return for a maintenance project next year and will pump a greater amount of sand to Ortley Beach, which has been more greatly affected by storms than neighboring communities and even other portions of Toms River’s barrier island communities.