Ocean Township:Deal Road residents Jacqui Wenzel Jungkunst and husband Peter Junkunst are going to the NJ Superior Court, Docket Noll MON-L-1467-18 on Friday, July 20 seeking the Court's reversal or other action to address possible rectifications to local Ordinance 2303, enacted earlier through Township Council revising the older ordinance with modifications or zoning updates that alter the ordinance requirements for the property at the intersection of Deal Road and Highway 35.
The property is a years earlier subdivision of the property owned by Stop and Shop, and has been the subject of a law suit against the township for many years. A recent Planning Board decision is understood to have been made with the view that 2303 meets the provisions of the existing Master Plan with small wording clarifications. The PB requested wording details that improve or clarify conformance with the terms old ordinance.
In their filing with the Superior Court the couple have stated they are "Ocean Township residents, have attended Township Council meetings and Planning Board hearings where zoning Ordinance #2303 was discussed. Throughout the process, we were never given the opportunity to present expert testimony on the question of whether the proposed ordinance was "substantially consistent" with the 1990 Master Plan and/or the 2000 Re-examination Report, and we were never given the opportunity to cross examine the Township's Planner or review his report on which the Planning Board and the City Council allegedly relied. Instead, we were consistently met by a governing body and planning board members who appeared to have a predetermined bias to proceed with the zoning change regardless of what Plaintiffs and members of the community said."
Plaintiffs are prepared to go to trial to present oral arguments and exercise their right to cross examine. After such trial, they believe the this Court will declare the Ordinance invalid and require the City Council to state on the records its reasons for enacting a zoning ordinance that is inconsistent with the Master Plan.
The couple held a meeting on Sunday of interested residents to explain the procedures and processes here. The argument they pursue is two-fold. One is the test of legality of the Council 20303 and the PB ruling without public comments, which was not permitted, since PB said it was not an application but rather a review to ascertain consistency with the existing Master Plan.
Council has, for months dating back to late 2017, been reviewing the Master Plan, which now past the required review date the State requires, 10 years, and to also reflect changes in more up to date land uses.