Christie to beach advocates: ‘What else?’

BERGENFIELD – Confronted with the protests of shore advocates, Gov. Chris Christie asked what else he can do.

The state’s ocean water quality is receiving historically high grades, Christie said, and the amount of debris and materials washing ashore this year was also an improvement.

Christie passed a ban on offshore natural gas drilling – “I stood up to energy interests” – an initiative that other Republican governors are in full support of, but that could be harmful to the shore environs.

Beach replenishment funds in the state budget survived untouched, he said, as other programs experienced painful reductions or elimination – ensuring matching federal funds weren’t left on the table.

The mayor in Avalon told Christie that the beach replenishment played a big part in saving shore blocks from Tropical Storm Irene. “The dunes did their job,” the mayor told Christie on a tour after the storm.

“I will listen,” he said of the beach advocate complaints, “to make sure I’m not missing anything,” but some green lobby critics will never be satisfied. “I’m going to be who I am,” he said.

Christie to beach advocates: ‘What else?’