CNBNEWS POINT OF VIEW
by Bill Cleary
This past July Gloucester City Mayor William James and Council claimed that the vandalism at Freedom Pier was being caused by individuals who were using the pier for fishing in the Delaware River. An ordinance was introduced on first reading July 26. No Fishing signs were erected and the ban on fishing took effect immediately even though the public hearing on the new city ordinance wasn’t scheduled until August 16.
Bob Bevan, the Mayor’s aide said, “The new law was needed because there were five complaints to the Mayor's office during a 2-week period. Those complaints were about and the trash left by people fishing, leaving bait on the teak benches, taking nuts off the iron fence to weight their lines, and then cutting up bait on the tops of the teak trash receptacles. Freedom Pier was designed for the "non-fishing" public, those wishing to relax on the benches, take a stroll and enjoy the sunsets.”
Anglers understandably took offense that they were being singled out for the destruction.