Moravians, Environmental Group File Appeal of CZM Summer’s End Permit

CORAL BAY — As officials of the Moravian Church of the Virgin Islands said before the St. John Coastal Zone Management Committee (CZM) voted in October to approve the controversial mega-yacht marina covering more than half of historic Coral Harbor, when it comes to the development of a marina in Coral Bay, the Moravian Church wants half.

Attorneys for the Moravian Council filed a voluminous appeal in opposition to the permitted Coral Bay Marina, The Yacht Club at Summer’s End with the Board of Land Use Appeals to support their opposition. The copy of the legal document available on the internet does not have page numbers, but has been described as 30 pages in length and includes copies of the two CZM permits being appealed.

The entire document can be found at the savecoralbay website.

“Numerous Errors of Law”
“The Moravian Church Conference of the Virgin Islands… hereby appeals the decisions of the St. John Coastal Zone Management Committee (CZM) rendered on October 10, 2014,” the Petition for Appeal stated.

“The Moravian Church challenges the decision due to the numerous errors of law and arbitrary and capricious actions, the effect of which would be to substantially damage the Coastal Zone environment and deprive the Moravian Church of its rights as an historic owner of shoreline property abutting Coral Bay, including the right to full and equitable use of its land as a site for a long-planned marina,” the document states.

Opponents of the competing mega-yacht marina project which extends more than halfway across the broad shallow bay from leased property on the opposite shore of Coral Bay Harbor have supported the Moravian Church’s position that it has equal riparian rights from the shoreline of its property.

VICS Also Files Appeal
The V.I. Conservation Society also filed a 55-page appeal of the CZM decision on November 14, according to published reports. Counsel for the V.I. Conservation Society did not return an e-mail request from St. John Tradewinds for a copy of the organization’s appeal or for comment on their appeal on Friday, December 5.

The Moravian Council appeal was prepared by Atty. Mark D. Hodge of the St. Thomas Law Firm of Hodge and Hodge who could not be reached for further comment.
Project architect Woods chairs the Board of Land Use Appeals and has said that he would recuse himself from any action on the appeals of the Summer’s End Group marina permit.
There was no information on when the appeals would be considered.