The Bay Head Environmental Commission (BHEC) was established in 1989 and adopted by the Bay Head Borough Council on May 16, 1989. (Ordinance No. 1989-5) “…for the protection, development or use of natural resources, including water resources, located within the territorial limits of the Borough.” In order to fulfill this mandate, the Bay Head Environmental Commission has been empowered to:
Promote the conservation and development of the natural resources of the Borough;
Plan, implement and inform the Public about local conservation programs;
Conduct research into the possible use of open areas of the Borough;
Recommend to the Planning Board plans and programs for its inclusion in a Master Plan and the development and use of such open areas;
Advertise, prepare, print and distribute books, maps, charts, plans and pamphlets, that in its judgment, it deems necessary for its purpose;
Manage donated or purchased lands for conservation purposes and operate conservation programs;
Act as the coordinating agency for the community on conservation matters and as a liaison between local conservation needs and regional, county, state and federal agencies administering to those needs.
The BHEC evolved from the formation of the Recycling Committee that was formed to create a recycling program in Bay Head. Perhaps one of the most important issues that confronted the BHEC in the early years was the protection of the dune system. The BHEC served a critical role in promoting a Dune Ordinance that was adopted by Bay Head Borough Council on September 7, 1993 (Ordinance No. 1993-8). Since that time, educational programs have sought to provide residents with information regarding the dune system and to promote good dune maintenance practices, including the importance of dune grass planting (which the Borough distributes annually thanks to the Ocean County Board of Chosen Freeholders who provides the dune grass). Several years ago, the BHEC partnered with the Seaweeders of Bay Head and Mantoloking and the Bay Head Business Association who generously provided the funds to produce Wayside Exhibits regarding the dune system in Bay Head.
Over the years, the BHEC has given presentation each summer is a series called, “Timely Topics”. Topics have ranged from Non-Point Source Pollution (and best stormwater Management practices), Landscaping Forums (promoting the use of Native Plants), and presentations regarding climate change, to name a few. In the past, The BHEC has also staged three town meetings regarding the beach renourishment issue.
After a “Timely Topic” featuring Raingardens, the BHEC again partnered with the “Seaweeders” and built a rain garden at the recycling center. The BHEC also supports the work of “Save Barnegat Bay” and promotes bay friendly programs. The BHEC also supports “Clean Ocean Action” and has featured a variety of COA presentations as part of the “Timely Topics” series.
The Commission is currently designing this summer’s “Timely Topic” programs and greatly looking forward to another more informative and exciting summer.
The BHEC is comprised of a member of the Borough Council, a member of the Planning Bard, and five (5) citizens at large. The BHEC meets every second Tuesday of the month at Bay Head Borough Hall at 7:30PM. The meetings are open to the Public.
(Bay Head Borough Council liaison
to the Bay Head Environmental Commission)