Regarding the Dec. 26 story, "Sea Isle may spend $13M on City Hall":
Sea Isle City officials want a new all-in-one City Hall/Public Safety building. The powers that be are spinning a story to make us believe it's cheaper to build a new $13 million building than it is to continue using the existing three buildings with, in my opinion, minor upgrading and a little renovating.
They said there was two feet of water in City Hall and the Public Safety building. That is simply not accurate, and that hardly makes them useless. It would seem they have exaggerated how much it would cost to keep them in service.
They are now using the vacated school building to house City Hall and the Police Department and are saying it will take a huge sum of money to bring this building up to Federal Emergency Management Agency regulations. I don't think this is required of existing buildings. It needs a few Americans with Disabilities Act upgrades, but it does not need an elevator. They just spent a tidy sum for a new roof, and it even has a large parking lot. They have already paid the money for the relocation, why waste it?
I don't think they have even tried to utilize all that the school building is capable of providing.
It appears egos are at stake here, and money is no object. I think a better use of the money would be raising and extending the promenade to First Street. Raise it three or four feet and put a black-top surface on it so police and firefighters can get to the north end in emergencies during times of storm and high tides.
With new bulkhead building methods I don't think the costs would be prohibitive. We live in a billion-dollar city protected from the ocean by what - a sand dune?
Let's face it, we were lucky in Sandy, and a new building is not the proper response to that. We should parlay that luck with serious beachfront protection. It's long overdue.
I think the mayor and City Council need to take more time and get their priorities straight.
Sea Isle City