Belmar Mayor Matt Doherty announced that he turned down Governor Phil Murphy’s offer to be the Chief Administrator of the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission at the Borough’s Council meeting on Tuesday night.
BELMAR, NJ — On a day that should have been a time of celebration at Belmar Elementary School is a time of grief as the school mourns the drowning of one 13-year-old student and prays for the 12-year-old student who is clinging to life.
Today, June 16, marks the final day of the school year for Belmar Elementary School — less than 15 hours after two unidentified students, who were cousins, were pulled from the surf at the Ninth Avenue beach along Ocean Avenue. While attempts to save one of the girls were unsuccessful, the other girl is in critical condition on life-support at Jersey Shore University Medical Center, Neptune.
What makes the situation even more heart-wrenching is that the tragic scene began to unfold at about 6:30 p.m. on June 15 — the same time 55 eighth-graders were participating in their graduation ceremony at Belmar Elementary School, unaware of the massive emergency scene just six blocks away.
TRENTON – Several popular Jersey Shore bars including D’Jais in Belmar are seeking a permanent extension to seasonal liquor licenses granted temporarily after Hurricane Sandy that allowed them to open earlier in the year. The bill pending in the Legislature would allow the holders of the nine coveted seasonal licenses to open in time for St.… Read the rest of this entry »
The Emperor and Empress of Belmar. photo via facebook
Belmar Mayor Matt Doherty has been accused of fraud, tortious interference, breach of contract and breach of covenant in suit filed against Doherty personally and the Borough of Belmar by the landlord of Salt, the Harmon Brothers’ establishment whose liquor license transfer was denied by the Borough last Spring.
The suit filed by William Wolf of Bathgate, Wegener and Wolf on behalf a Loko Co, LLC, a development company owned by Gregory Kapalko, alleges that Doherty urged Kapalko to suspend the permitting applications with the NJ DEP for the construction of the waterfront property that Loko has an agreement with the Borough to redevelop and instead enter into a Joint Venture with Ollie Klein, the owner of Klein’s Fish Market, and Stephen and Mark Coleman, Florida based real estate investors. Doherty promised that the Borough would extend the schedule of the Redevelopment Agreement if Klein and the Colemans were involved in the project, according to the suit. Loko complied with Doherty’s suggestion and he reneged on the deal to extend the Redevelopment Agreement.
Belmar Mayor Matt Doherty, a candidate for Monmouth County Freeholder, is a long term supporter of the gas tax increase that is up for a vote in the State Legislature on Friday.
In 2014, Doherty wrote a letter endorsing the work of Foward New Jersey, a coalition of unions and other special interest groups who will collect the $2 million per mile construction costs that the $.23 per gallon gas tax will fund. Forward New Jersey has been lobbying for the gas tax increase for almost two years and is waging a social media campaign to counter the grass-roots opposition to the tax increase as you are reading this article. Doherty’s letter can be found here.
Belmar Mayor Matt Doherty told The Asbury Park Pressthat he would disclose all donations to his campaign for Monmouth County Freeholder under the amount of $300, but only those donations received after July 13. July 13 was the date that the Doherty administration filed the 12 year old pay to play ethics ordinance with the state.
“I’m going to follow the ordinance and the state statutes to the letter.” Doherty told app. It’s disappointing that the reporter let him get away with that Clinton speak.
By a margin of 829-292, Belmar voters repudiated the hubris of Mayor “Lawless Matt” Doherty on Tuesday.
In a special election to decide the validity of the pay to play/ethics law that the borough council approved shortly after Doherty became a candidate for Monmouth County Freeholder last Spring voters said NO to the mayor’s attempt to change the rules for his own ambitions. Doherty, a Democrat, had claimed that the new law had nothing to do with his candidacy for Freeholder. Rather, it was designed to make it easier for Belmar Republicans to raise money.
The law, which had it been approved by the voters, would have allowed Doherty to conceal contributions to his campaign for Freeholder in the amount of $300 or less and to accept donations from liquor license holders, developers and other vendors and professionals with business before the Borough and still take official action on that business. The existing pay to play/ethics ordinance in the borough prohibits those activities.
The big one is not until November 8, but for Belmar and Sea Bright residents, Tuesday September 27 is also election day as both borough’s are holding special elections with a public question.
In Belmar, voters are asked to approve or reject “Matt’s Law”, an amendment to the borough’s pay to play and ethics ordinance which significantly loosens to reporting requirements of campaign contributions and allows borough officials to act in their official capacities in matters involving campaign donors like liquor license holders, developers and other borough vendors. The ordinance is nicknamed for Mayor “Lawless Matt” Doherty because it was passed by the council at roughly the same time Doherty became a Democrat candidate for Monmouth County Freeholder. Doherty said the ordinance had nothing to do with his candidacy, but was designed to make it easier for Belmar Republicans to raise campaign funds.