The NJ Sierra Club responds to Liberty State Park for All Coalition’s quote on DEP’s LSP Ecological Restoration Public Meeting. Executive Director Arnold Stovel, stated in an Insider release, “Those who don’t want active recreation in Liberty State Park’s Interior only care about what they want, not what the community wants. They know this mix of active and passive recreation in the Interior is possible even though for decades they fought against it. Only now, when it is clear that active recreation is what the actual Jersey City community wants, are these so-called advocates saying they were on our side the whole time. Their time monopolizing the conversation is ending. The community will be heard!” Jeff Tittel, Director of the New Jersey Sierra Club, released the following statement:
“The NJ DEP plan for the interior of Liberty State Park is important because it will create a natural area for the people of Jersey City to enjoy. The Fireman front group, Liberty State Park for All Coalition, is using active recreation as a way to open up the interior for private development. The interior should be a place for natural areas however it can still have active recreation on the edge and in other areas of the park. Fireman has been lobbying behind the scenes and now he has this fake group to do his dirty work for him. They will say anything to push their agenda. They are not Liberty State Park for All, they are Liberty State Park for Fireman.
“Arnold Stovel’s organization is just a front for Paul Fireman’s millionaire golf course proposal and the push for 50 acres of active recreation in the interior. We support active recreation, however there are appropriate areas to put things such as baseball fields, soccer fields, and other athletic facilities. It’s critical that the interior recreation plan include restoration of natural systems and for passive recreation like hiking and bird watching. More importantly, this plan is supposed to remediate and provide the public with green spaces and public facilities.
“It’s critical for the people in Jersey City and other places to be able to enjoy nature in their own city instead of traveling all the way to Morris County or somewhere else to see it. This is a park that represents both The Statue of Liberty and the gateway to our country. It’s critical that we can offer a wonderful place of nature for everyone to enjoy. It’s our Yosemite and should not be privatized. This park is held in the public trust. LSP belongs to all of use and should be for ALL of us.”