Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Terrorism Exercise in Cape May

Terrorism Exercise in Cape May: U.S. Coast Guard Training Center Cape May and emergency personnel from the City of Cape May, conducted a terrorism simulation exercise at the training center, to better prepare in the event of an actual event. The center staged a simulated car bomb attack on the center's dining facility.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Check out "Cape May Ablaze" at the Physick Estate, starting today!

Carriage House Gallery Exhibits
Throughout the year, the Carriage House Gallery is home to changing exhibits that bring history to life. Visit scenes from the Victorian era or explore Cape May’s African American heritage; reminisce on years past or become a kid again when the Gallery turns into a holiday wonderland.

The Carriage House Gallery is fully accessible
For information, call 609-884-5404 or 800-275-4278

APRIL 25-OCT. 14
From the beginning, fire has shaped Cape May more than any other force, natural or manmade. Even today, fire continues to be the bane of Cape May, a National Historic Landmark filled with hundreds of restored Colonial and Victorian buildings. Exhibit curator Ben Miller, author of Exit Zero's best-selling book, The First Resort, takes visitors on a journey through Cape May's fiery past in this must-see exhibit that includes an authentic 1924 Model T fire truck. 
Sponsored by Sturdy Savings Bank

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Good Review for Tisha's Restaurant

Monday, April 21, 2014

Film of the Concrete Ship - 1927 - "For Those In Peril" (1927)

The Concrete Ship - a/k/a Atlantus - in 1927. This film is from a British archive.  This is the same ship you see at the end of Sunset Boulevard at Sunset Beach. WOW.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Are Cape May Beach Tags Freely Transferable? Let's Read the Law and Find Out!

Exit Zero - the free bi-weekly newspaper in Cape May - published one of my articles earlier this year about this history of beach tags in Cape May.  I expressed the opinion in the article that at this time, based on a state environmental regulation, beach tags are freely transferable at the discretion of the tag holder and the City of Cape May cannot penalize you for sharing - or transferring - a seasonal, weekly, or 3-day beach tag that was properly obtained originally from the City.  I understand the City may disagree with my opinion.  For what it's worth, here is the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection regulation that in my opinion applies (scroll down to subsection (y)(5):

(y) A fee for use of bathing and recreational facilities and safeguards, such as lifeguards, toilets, 
showers, and parking, at publicly or privately owned beach or waterfront areas, may be charged in accordance with (y)1 through 6 below. However, no fees shall be charged solely for access to or use of tidal waterways and their shores. The fee schedule and documentation of compliance with this paragraph shall be submitted to the Department by the permittee and its successors in title and interest upon request. 

1. Fees shall be no greater than that which is required to operate and maintain the facility, taking 
into consideration basic support amenities provided, such as lifeguards, restroom/shower facilities 
and trash pickup. This requirement applies to facilities and services directly associated with using the tidal waterways and their shores and does not apply to additional amenities such as cabanas, pools, or restaurants; 

2. Fees shall not discriminate between residents and non-residents or on any other basis, except as allowed by this rule or other law; 

3. Fees shall not be charged for children under the age of 12 years; 

4. Badges or passes must be available for sale at times and places that are reasonably convenient 
for the public. Badges and passes shall be offered for sale in person at the beach or waterfront area during the hours that the beach is staffed. In addition, if the entity that owns or operates the beach or waterfront area offers private memberships, public badges or passes must be offered for sale to the public in the same manner, times and places as private memberships; 

5. Weekly, monthly or seasonal badges or passes shall be transferable at the discretion of the badge or pass holder; and 

6. Public access to and use of tidal waterways and their shores may not be conditioned upon 
providing identification or signing or otherwise agreeing to any waiver or similar disclaimer of rights. 

You can find this regulation online at this link:
 N.J. Admin. Code tit. 7, 7:7E-8.11(y)(5). - you will have to scroll down to page 220 of this link to find the proper subsection (the one I bolded above).

The City of Cape May apparently relies upon its relevant local ordinance, which reads:

§ 158-8.    Regulations for beach tags.

The following rules and regulations are hereby established, and it shall be unlawful to violate any of the rules and regulations or those subsequently adopted resolutions, during the bathing season or at other times if specifically provided for:
A.    No privilege, right, badge, permit or other evidence to use the beaches of the City, issued to or to be issued upon payment of any of the fees provided for by this article, shall be sold, leased or otherwise transferred to any person or entity by any one other than the City or its duly authorized representatives. However, daily beach tags as provided for in § 158-3E may be transferred from person to person, provided no special or separate charge is made for such transfer or use. Specifically, the City or its duly authorized representatives shall be the sole and exclusive vendor and/or lessor of the privileges, rights, badges or permits, as it is hereby deemed unlawful for any person or entity to purchase or lease the badges from any one other than the City or its duly authorized representatives.

Now, as you can see, the City ordinance appears to conflict with the State of New Jersey regulation.  

I would invite you to review your civics education and try and answer this question: Does a local ordinance trump a state regulation that was implemented pursuant to a state statute passed by the state legislature?
In a card game between the city council and the state legislature, who are you putting your money on?

Please do not hesitate to share your opinion below in the comments, or in an email if you prefer.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Cool Cape May, The Light of Asia, and South Cape May

Ben Miller, Cape May historian (and no relation) shared the above photo of South Cape May yesterday on the "Cool Cape May" Facebook page.  Cool Cape May is the best facebook group for anyone who wants to learn about the history of Cape May and its surrounding areas; I recommend joining the site. Most of what you see in this photo is now underwater just off The Cove beach, having washed away during the 1940s because of storms.  If you look closely in the middle of the photo, you can see "The Light of Asia," an 'elephant' that was built in South Cape May that is a sort-of sister to "Lucy the Elephant" up in Margate.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

You May Never Look at the Cove the Same Way Again

As you know, Sports Illustrated visited Cape May and other points on the Jersey shore last year and featured these shore points in this year's swimsuit issue. But this video, posted yesterday, features nearly three minutes of Cape May as seen during the photo shoots all over town. You will see the Merry Widow, the Cove, lifeguards for the ladies, and a number of other Cape May haunts.  Worth watching.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Nice Write-Up for McGlade's

Monday, April 7, 2014

Rest in Peace, Mickey Rooney

Rest in Peace, Mickey Rooney
I understand Mickey Rooney has passed.
We have lost Shirley Temple and
Mickey Rooney in one year.  Hard to
believe. Mickey had his brush
with Cape May County eight
years ago when he
hosted the Ocean City
Doo Dah Parade.

Here's how the
CapeMayTimes.Com covered it:

Mickey Rooney is Grand Marshal of Ocean City's Doo Dah Parade

I am glad that the makers of the Muppets movie saw fit to include Mickey in the scene that makes the movie: "Life is a Happy Song," when they re-booted the franchise a few years ago. My children will know they saw one of the true kings of the motion picture industry, and they saw him sing a piece of a song that really reflected the way he seemed to look at life. Life is a happy song, indeed. 

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Dog Park To Close for Environmental Remediation

The Cape May Gazette reports that the dog park on Lafayette to close for two years.   Good to see the property being cleaned up. Gives me an excuse to post a cute dog photo in Cape May at Higbees:

Photo credit to a website that appears to no longer be working. If bringfidodotcom is working and you are familiar with its owner, just comment and I'll link to the correct page. 

Friday, April 4, 2014

Betting on New Jersey

Indulge me today as I try something a bit different. This post is about the Jersey shore, gambling, federal law, freedom, silly laws, Governor Christie, and Atlantic City.  After you read the blog post, please leave me a comment and let me know if you found this piece interesting.  Thanks!

Unless you live under a rock, you know that we are in the midst of “March Madness.” “March Madness” does not refer to how most New Jerseyans feel after this last winter. Rather, it is a term coined in Illinois to describe high school basketball and then made ubiquitous when legendary broadcaster Brent Musburger made it his own as it relates to big-time college basketball. “March Madness” describes the NCAA College Basketball tournament that dominates the sports world for the better part of March and into the first week of April each year.

Madness, depending on your perspective, may also describe the federal government’s decision to make sports gambling illegal throughout this fair land . . . except for in Nevada, Oregon, Montana, and Delaware. I understand that some of you may partake in a little illicit gambling on the NCAA tournament each year. You know who you are. And although the government typically looks the other way regarding these pools (or considers them not illegal gambling for a variety of reasons), the fact remains that for the most part sports gambling is prohibited everywhere in the United States except for those four states listed above – most notably Nevada – and just as notably not in New Jersey.

Why is this so? Because, a little over 20 years ago, Congress passed a law that prohibited sports gambling anywhere except for those four states. Theoretically, Congress passed the law, called the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (“PASPA”), so as to combat the scourge of sports gambling and its impact on amateur and professional sports. To address that concern, the law forbade a state from authorizing, licensing, or operating sports gambling. And whatever the merits of that concern, Congress undercut the sincerity of its concern for the issue when it exempted those states from the law. Some would say the law is a form of federally-endorsed economic protectionism that favors those four states over the other 46 states.

To its credit, Congress used the law to open a window for New Jersey to change its own law to allow sports gambling. If New Jersey did so – quickly – then New Jersey could have also had legal sports gambling, according to PASPA. Clearly, Congress opened the window so as to allow for sports gambling in Atlantic City. But for whatever reason, New Jersey did not act to amend its law at the time in 1992 to allow sports gambling and the window that PASPA opened for New Jersey closed. Nevada remained – and to this date, remains – the primary state in the country where sports gambling is legal and a multi-million dollar business.

There is little question that Atlantic City could use an economic boost, and few could argue that legal sports gambling would not provide such a boost. To that end, the people of New Jersey amended their constitution to allow for sports gambling in 2010, and then the Legislature and Governor Christie approved a state licensing scheme for businesses that wished to become involved in sports gambling. And, as so often happens when someone wants to shake things up, somebody sued.

The NCAA, Major League Baseball, the NFL, the NBA, and the Feds sued. They pointed out that PASPA prevented New Jersey from licensing sports gambling, and the leagues suggested that gambling on sports negatively affects their sports.

Think about that latter argument for a second. Then think about how sports betting lines are printed in most every daily newspaper, are all over the internet, and are talked about on the airwaves and on television each and everyday. People don’t play “fantasy sports” because they like to follow certain athletes. They play them as a form of gambling. And, not surprisingly, the rise of fantasy sports has tracked a rise in popularity in the sports leagues – those same sports leagues that are now suing New Jersey.

In response to the sports leagues’ and the feds’ arguments, New Jersey suggested to the courts that Congress could not favor one state (or four states) at the expense of all the other states, and also suggested that the sports leagues had no standing to object to the New Jersey law, because the sports gambling did not directly impact their sports.

To date, the sports leagues and the feds have won the argument. Currently, New Jersey is precluded from allowing the legal sports gambling that the people of New Jersey want, and the courts have told New Jersey that, in the face of the federal law PASPA, it had no legal authority to approve licensed sports gambling.

But, depending on the highest court in the land, that all could change. Governor Christie has challenged the federal courts’ decision, and the justices of the Supreme Court of the United States are currently considering whether to hear the case. If nothing else, Governor Christie has hired the right lawyer to make the state’s case. Ted Olsen, who you may remember from the Bush vs. Gore election litigation in 2000 or from the more recent litigation over California’s gay marriage debate, will argue New Jersey’s case. This is a battle that Governor Christie clearly intends to win on behalf of the people of the state that voted in favor of amending the state constitution to allow for sports gambling.

I work for a law firm – Pacific Legal Foundation – that has argued in favor of the State of New Jersey’s position regarding sports gambling and the impropriety of PASPA. I look forward to seeing whether the Supreme Court agrees to hear the case and overturn the federal law, or whether it allows the protectionist federal law to remain in place, to the economic detriment of Cape May’s sister shore town up the coast.

If it leaves the law in place, you might call that decision a different kind of March Madness.

This entry cross-posted at my legal blog: millerappellate.com

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Fishing Flea Market this Sunday at Cape May Elementary School

My favorite fishing spot: The Alexander Street Jetty

There are few finer pastimes in Cape May than fishing. This Sunday, you are invited to attend a fishing flea market at Cape May Elementary in order to find just the right fishing rod, reel, or accessory! Check it out. Here are the details:

Sunday, Apr. 6, 2014
Cape May Fishing Flea Market
Type of Event: Fishing Flea Market
Event Date(s): 04/06/2014
Event Time(s): 9AM to 2PM
Admission: $4, Kids 12 & Under FREE
Location: Cape May Elementary School
Address: 921 Lafayette Street
Cape May, NJ 08005
Contact: Dave DeGennaro
Email: hiflierfishing@verizon.net
Phone: 732.330.5674
Website: N/A
Vendor Info: Contact for table information

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Cool Cape May

Here's today's news: the sunrise was beautiful this morning. Why aren't you in Cape May?

Today's photo courtesy of Dave Callahan, who shared it with the best Cape-May-related group on Facebook, known as Cool Cape May. I recommend you join it if you like photos like this one, and walks down memory lane.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Learn how to aid injured wildlife at Cape May event

Learn how to aid injured wildlife at Cape May event:

"You've found an injured bird? Now what?"That's the title of a talk 
this evening at the Nature Center of Cape May, another in the
 ongoing series of Harborside Chats at the bayside center. The 
speaker is Kathleen Woods, who has state & federal recognition as 
a "master wildlife rehabilitator." Woods is a part-time resident of 
Erma, in Lower Township, and part of her talk will focus on
"how to decide if an animal needs your help.Join us as we discuss 
the 'job' that we do, and learn how you can help when there isn't a 
rehabilitator around." And despite its name, her topic isn't limited 
to birds - it can apply to a wide variety of wildlife.

If You Go: The Harborside Chats start 6 p.m. in the Nature 
Center's Charlotte Van Leer Todd Education Hall, at 1600 
Delaware Ave., Cape May. Free, but donations are welcome.