NEW JERSEY – Last week, Governor Phil Murphy signed legislation (S1074) to protect the public’s right to access the beaches and waterfronts in the state.
The bill establishes that the states tidal waters and adjacent shorelines belong to the public to be used for navigation, commerce, and recreation, including bathing, swimming, and fishing.
“New Jersey’s shoreline and coastal communities are some of our state’s greatest treasures,” Murphy said. “By strengthening the public’s right to access our beaches, we are ensuring that all New Jersey residents and visitors can enjoy our beautiful shore this summer and for generations to come.”
The ownership of the tidal waters and adjacent shorelines will be held in a trust by the state. S1074 also ensures that the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), protects the public’s right of access to the public trust lands in the Coastal Area Facility Review Act, the Wetlands Act of 1970, the Flood Hazard Area Control Act, the State’s implementation of the federal Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, or any other law.
“The Jersey shore is a source of joy, pride and admiration for residents of our State,” Assemblywoman Joann Downey who was one of the primary sponsors for the bill.“Our beautiful coastline belongs to the public, from lifelong New Jerseyans to summer visitors. With this bill, the public’s right to the shoreline will continue to be protected for years to come.”