Just 2 months ago, Fairness in Taxes became aware of a planned shady land purchase by Ocean City. FIT repeatedly asked the City to slow down and have public meetings concerning the purchase of the Klause property. The city ignored FIT’s pleas and forged ahead with the purchase. FIT quickly mobilized and collected the necessary signatures under NJ State Law to stop the purchase and force a public referendum.
Here is the timeline of the successful petition drive which was also a tremendous victory for Ocean City Taxpayers!
- 9/13- Council voted 7-0 to approve, on second reading, a Bond ordinance for $8.5 Million to purchase the Klause property
- 9/20- Special FIT meeting at the Library- decided to move forward with a petition for referendum.
- 9/24- Marie Hayes called Dave Nahan at the Sentinel, giving him an exclusive that FIT was starting the petition drive. He interviewed Dave Hayes and Dave Breeden
- 9/26- Sentinel carried front page article on the petition drive
- 10/1- Mayor Gillian called Jim Tweed, FIT President, to talk
- 10/2- Dave Hayes called an emergency meeting regarding the petition drive
- 10/5- Voted to retain an attorney at the regular FIT meeting
- 10/8- Notary Party at the Library
- 10/9- Dave Hayes, Dave Breeden, and Jim Tweed delivered 467 signatures to the City Clerk
- 10/15- Dave Hayes, Dave Breeden, and Jim Tweed met with Anthony Cantanese, Esq., in Cape May Courthouse regarding representing FIT
- 10/16- City rejected FIT’s petitions, saying we needed 600 signatures
- 10/17- Dave Breeden’s ad was published in the Sentinel about Mayor Gillian and Jerry Klause misleading the public
- 10/22- Dave Breeden turned in 287 additional signatures to the City Clerk, raising our total to 687!
- 10/23- The City accepted the additional signatures and admitted FIT had enough signatures to trigger a public referendum. Mayor Gillian announced that the purchase of the Klause property would be called off.
- 11/8- City Council plans to introduce an ordinance to repeal the ordinance purchasing the Klause property. That will give the city 2 weeks to negotiate a lower sale price.