Friday, July 16, 2010

An eerie silence

The silence remains deafening! By now, NOPE had hoped to learn of some breakthrough in buyout negotiations between the Department of Navy and Laurelwood Homes, LLC, since the parties are evidently beyond the 60-day deadline to address a complaint filed by Laurelwood owner Teri Fischer with the DoN's contracting officer over the Navy's reported initial $9 million bid. But still no word...

Meanwhile, based on first-hand accounts from NOPE sources, NWS Earle and Colts Neck Township Committee are seemingly doing nothing to foster goodwill toward their neighbors, with apparent clandestine meetings over the DoN's bid to rent 49 vacant base homes owned by Balfour Beatty (presumably the Stark Road complex) to either local veterans or civilians. This rumor, in and of itself, portends trouble with Tinton Falls over the decades-long fued over educational responsibility for residents at NWS Earle, as well as interested other stakeholders such as the thousands of resident supporters of NOPE.

It was wonderful for everyone to rejoice back in April when the DoN withdrew its Record of Decision on proposed civilian housing and unimpeded access to Laurelwood at NWS Earle, but the process must be seen through completion to satisfy a NOPE community that, for 30 months and counting, has acted in the best interests of NWS Earle host towns, and likely Earle itself. Maybe it is time for federal, state and local leaders to hold the DoN's feet to the fire again, so to speak, pertaining to poor infrastructure planning and obvious mismanagement of privatized housing deals at NWS Earle.

Housing issues at NWS Earle are causing nothing but unnecessary stress, headaches and, at times, infighting for the surrounding communities.

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