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Little Egg Inlet a No-Go as Borrow Site for Upcoming Beachfill in Holgate

Posted on May 17, 2016

Use of Little Egg Inlet as a borrow site for beach replenishment in the Holgate section of Long Beach Township is off the table, the U.S. Army Corps announced Friday.

“We received word from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that they are requiring formal consultation under the Endangered Species Act. This could take four to six months so it will prevent us from using the site as a borrow area for this current contract,” Corps press officer Steve Rochette explained.

The matter hinges in part on U.S. Fish and Wildlife’s concern for three threatened species – piping plover, red knot and seabeach amaranth – and their habitat in the Little Egg Inlet complex.

Beachfill contractor Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Co. is currently at work in Beach Haven; on Friday, the dredge Liberty Island was south of Leeward Avenue, heading north, and the Padre Island and Dodge Island were near Sixth Street, operating southward. The dredges are scheduled to meet somewhere in the middle of the borough at the end of the month.

At that point, when restoration in Beach Haven is complete, the Liberty Island will move to Holgate.

When the Holgate work is finished in late June, operations will jump to the North Beach section of the township. Twenty-second to 25th Street in Surf City is also set to be replenished at that time.

The current borrow site is approximately 3 miles offshore of Harvey Cedars, known as “the Harvey Cedars lump,” said Long Beach Township Mayor Joseph Mancini, who was disappointed that the permit for the inlet was not approved in time for the Holgate beachfill.

Although the Army Corps was confident the proposed dredging of Little Egg Inlet would “have no adverse impact to the inlet or surrounding shorelines,” as Rochette noted, the permit approval process involves coordination with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other environmental resource agencies. (Public comment was also requested. Comments are available on the project website at

Great Lakes needs to continue into Holgate following the Beach Haven work, and the length of time the Endangered Species Act consultation could take definitively impedes the use of the inlet for that segment of the project.

Mancini said the Army Corps will continue with the approval process, “so I think in six months we’ll have (the inlet) as a borrow site,” which could be utilized for future rounds of replenishment on the Island’s south end.

Source: The

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