Inside Ocean County Government

Election 2017, Lakewood

LD30 Challenger Cores Claims Singer is “in the Pocket” of Lakewood Developers

LAKEWOOD – 30th District New Jersey State Senate candidate Amy Cores (D – Howell) is taking a shot at incumbent Senator Bob Singer (R – Island Heights) over his ties to wealthy Lakewood developers amid concerns about a proposal to build 1800 homes on the site of a township golf course and Singer’s silence on potential negative impacts.

Amy Cores

Bob Singer

“The development of Lakewood has gotten to the point where the town is on the verge of self-destruction,” Cores declared in a campaign press release. ”

Ties To GDMS Holdings – Same Developer Behind 1800 Home Golf Course Proposal

In a campaign press release, Cores noted that GDMS Holdings, LLC. –  which is listed in public records as being based out of the Jackson law offices of Levin, Shea & Pfeffer – has purchased the Eagle Ridge Golf Course in Lakewood and plans to turn it into a massive development. The controversial proposal calls for 1800 homes and retail stores to be built on the site of the Eagle Ridge Golf Course in Lakewood.

“GDMS now wants to overtake the Kokes Brothers as the largest developer in Lakewood. How much more can Lakewood stand?” Cores questioned. “Last year, Lakewood approved 501 single-family homes and duplexes. This project alone is four times that.”

In addition to drawing opposition from residents of Lakewood, surrounding towns including Toms River and Howell have seen both officials and residents voice opposition.

Cores posited that Senator Singer’s financial ties to the developers behind the golf course project have motivated his silence on the project’s potential for negative impact on already crowded Lakewood.

“Senator Singer has not expressed any significant opposition to this project. Why would he?” Cores questioned. “He received income from the Kokes Organization and uses a residence owned by GDMS Holdings to maintain a ‘residence’ in the district. In other words, he is in the pocket of the largest developers in Lakewood. Yet he sold his home and moved to Island Heights a few years ago.”

Public records have tied Senator Singer to both GDMS and Kokes. While Cores was correct in pointing out that GDMS Holdings maintained the residence for Singer, recent filings with the Ocean County Clerk’s Office show that Singer’s purported Lakewood property is now in the hands of another LLC.

According to property records on file with the Ocean County Clerk’s Office, 1463 Massachusetts Avenue, which Singer listed as being owned by him on financial disclosure forms, was sold by GDMS Holdings, LLC. to Whiting-based DHJ Associates, LLC. for the sum of $450,000. The deed was signed by Michael J Kokes. The property was later transferred to another LLC, 1463 Massachusetts, LLC.

Out-Of-District Home In Island Heights

Following OCP‘s reporting about Senator Singer’s residency, Singer has been known to privately complain to confidantes that the Island Heights residence is just a “vacation home” and that his primary residence is actually in Lakewood.

However, in 2015, Singer filed a sworn certification related to the sale of his Lakewood property at 850 Bellevue Avenue with the State of New Jersey. In that certification Singer declared his current street address to be in Island Heights, and not Lakewood.

A check of Singer’s 2017 financial disclosure form on file with the State of New Jersey showed that Singer failed to list a home address on his current form, despite listing both the New Hampshire Avenue property in Lakewood along with the Island Heights home.


Liked it? Take a second to support Ocean County Politics on Patreon!