Aquaculture development project
Baysave is a 501(c)(3) corporation in New Jersey that
partners with government, nonprofit entities and
commercial companies to develop sustainable and
restorative aquaculture. Activity is focused in the
Nantuxent Cove of the middle Delaware Bay. Amended
April 4, 2017
The cover photo shows the town of Baypoint in the background that is scheduled for
demolition under the NJ Blue Acres program in 2017. The middle photo shows
wetlands in Lawrence Township under acquisition by Baysave and a sand bar that
impedes oyster boats. The Shellfish Commission has proposed dredging. The near
field shows formerly unsustainable shoreline in Downe Township that is now better
managed under a Baysave conservation program.
Table of Contents
Vertical Integration of Commercial Crabbing 3
Shoreline Stabilization and Restoration 5
Oyster Hatchery 6
Land Use, Property Liabilities, Taxes and Land Use Regulation 7
Sanitary Wastewater Handling 8
Eel and kelp aquaculture 9
For more information 10
AQUACULTURE DEVELOPMENT PROJECT UPDATES
Baysave proposes an ambitious schedule for 2017 that will require the coordination of
government, nonprofit agencies and commercial fishery companies. Since its
founding in 2009, Baysave Corporation has contributed to the gradual transformation
of a failed bayshore fishing hamlet into a viable aquaculture facility with restorative
potential for the Delaware Bay.
The 2017 projects are listed in no order or significance.
This is an evolving plan current as of the date on the cover. Updated plans will be
Comments and feedback are welcome.
Commercial crab and oyster fisheries make up most of the local economy
VERTICAL INTEGRATION OF COMMERCIAL CRABBING
Blue claw crabs are abundant and manageable part of the vibrant local commercial
fishery. The two seafood products are hard shell crabs (a natural live fishery product
from the water brought directly to market) and soft shell crabs (an aquaculture
product requiring intensive human cultivation). Soft shell crabs rely on wild caught
shedder crabs that are then cultivate in land-based facilities until ready for market.
The state of New Jersey issues commercial crabbing licenses to individuals only, not
commercial fishing companies. Commercial fishing companies own and manage most
of the physical resources required to run a successful crabbing industry. Most
Individuals with crabbing licenses lack the working capital, business skills and
physical resources to maximize their crabbing operation. As a result, the industry is
largely controlled by a few wholesale buyers who restrict the development of a direct
efficient farmer to consumer market. This also impedes the development of crab
aquaculture. The primary inputs into a crab system are human labor and fuel for boat
engine. The supply of crabs varies with environmentalconditions and is considered
beyond human control. The cultivation of blue claw crabs (hard shell crabs) is
possible but not commercially viable. The market price of crabs varies wildly with
supply and demand ranging from $24 per basket wholesale price in the fall to $250
per basket retail price on July 4 weekend. The price of softshell crabs ranges from $2
to $8 each, depending primarily on the size and distribution system. Out average
price at the dock has been $3 per softshell crab.
Baysave proposes forming a crowd-sourced commercial crabbing operation where a
group of limited partners fund a seasonal crabbing operation. The partners have
rights to the physical product for their own consumption or other allowable
distribution (community crab picnics, for example) or a share in the cash proceeds of
crab products sold. The waterman (the individual with the crabbing license) provides
the labor in return for a share of the crabs. Baysave arranges the boat, the crab traps,
a dock, a retail distribution system. At the end of the season, the stakeholders have
the option of “rolling over” to the next season or “cashing out” based on the net year-
end operating results and asset valuation.
We are beginning the search for a waterman to test this business model.
We need a commitment of seed money from interested investors. A minimum of
$10,000 will be required to launch in spring 2017. Ideally, an investment of $1,000
each from 25 limited partners.
Our 2017-2022 NJ aquaculture license renewal application is already submitted; no
further action is required. Our commercial crab harvesting license is pending. No
additional licenses or permits are required.
We already have the boat, docks, fuel system and soft shell crab equipment. We
anticipate the need for substantial additional expenditures to upgrade the boat and
purchase additional crab traps.
An online text message based platform for communication among stakeholders and
coordinate sales orders is required and will be launched in advance of the crabbing
Blue claw crabs in one of our shedding tanks
SHORELINE STABILIZATION AND RESTORATION
Money Island lost most of its dry land mass due to sea level rise since the earliest
detailed engineering studies in the 1930s. The land that remains is subject to
increasingly frequent flooding, erosion and storm damage. Baysave is engaged in
several projects and experimental techniques to combat this effect. The most
significant of these projects is a partnership with The Nature Conservancy, Rutgers
University, Partnership for the Delaware Estuary and others to stabilize and restore
the eroding shoreline. Other projects include dune grass cultivation and berm
We propose continuing existing projects and welcome new ideas and proposals.
Baysave leased the ground to the partners in 2015 for $0.
The partners applied for the necessary permits, obtained funding, and ran the major
projects. Baysave ran parallel self-funded projects that did not require additional
The projects are expected to continue for the foreseeable future.
Initial results of erosion control measures of inshore grassy banks are impressive. We
have concerns over implied benefits of oyster restoration in the intertidal zone ; local
oysters growing in the intertidal zone do not survive the winter season.
An oyster hatchery is a necessary component in the developing commercial oyster
aquaculture industry. The hatchery is labor intensive and risky from a business
perspective. The only hatchery for commercial seed stock is operated by Rutgers
University. Rutgers expressed interest in getting out of the hatchery business.
Commercial growers have asked Baysave is we would be interested in running a
hatchery/nursery. The business risk might be mitigated by involving more
stakeholders and developing the operation as a hatchery/nursery.
We propose to run a hatchery developed with a lead partner in the oyster industry. A
lead partner has not yet been identified. Baysave will manage the facility for a share of
the seed produced. Doug Rice, a CPA and marine biology student, would be the
facility manager. Rutgers University and an established clam grower have offered to
lend technical assistance and help develop and transfer its current production
contracts to the new facility (especially those of commercial growers in Delaware
Baysave has indicated willingness to provide physical space and onsite labor. The
other partners have made initial positive indications but no commitments.
Oyster harvester at the former recreational marina site
LAND USE, PROPERTY LIABILITIES, TAXES AND DEED DEFECTS
Baysave acquired low value water-inundated land by donation that was previously
purchased through bankruptcy court. Other similar land acquisitions are planned. We
believe the land has potential for future aquaculture use. The pre-existing liens
attached to these properties far exceed the property value. Investors will not
participate in a project that includes a pre-existing legal liability. Investors perceive
this issue as an indication that government is “out of touch” with current land use
issues. In fact, until recently some in NJ government denied the effects of sea level
rise and the forecast of full inundation. Investors require some evidence that NJ
government is “on board” with the realities of the local bayshore and the
transformation to aquaculture-based land usage. Currently the land is the sole asset
owned by the nonprofit corporation and all other assets and aquaculture ventures are
controlled by separate entities.
To clear the old liens and convert the properties to productive use, three steps are
1) Clear the property deeds of old liabilities
2) Reset property taxes appropriate for the current use
3) Effect land use regulations at state and local level suitable for aquaculture
We propose an action plan in three consecutive steps:
1) Clear the deed liabilities through bankruptcy court to bring the land value back
up to zero.
2) Partner with the EPA in an educational program for local land use regulators
3) Use the evidence of cooperation by government as a tool to attract new
The chapter 12 bankruptcy for an aquaculture facility is planned for 2017. An
application for an EPA grant for the education program was submitted in 2016 but
awards have not been made yet. We anticipate that it might take longer and that our
application may need to be resubmitted for 2018.
State Senator Jeff Van Drew wrote a letter endorsing the education program.
Congressman LoBiondo’s office expressed support for the same but a letter as not
The mayor of Lawrence Township indicates support but has not been briefed on the
specifics of the plan based on the request of primary landowners in his jurisdiction.
The mayor of Downe Township was briefed in a face to face meeting in April 2014, He
might not have understood the asset conversion plan and may have receive
contradictory and incorrect information from a local attorney with adverse interests.
We recognize the importance of gaining approval of local government for the long-
term success of aquaculture at Nantuxent.
SANITARY WASTEWATER HANDLING
Human source wastewater is a primary risk in oyster growing habitats. The primary
risk contaminant is E. coli bacteria. Yet the necessary physical interaction of humans
in an oyster aquaculture zone dictates that some human waste solution is necessary.
The dominant approach at marinas and working waterfronts is to use holding tanks
(i.e. “port-a-pottys”) and then transport waste by truck to less sensitive facilities. The
state recently passed regulations requiring oyster harvesters to use on-board toilet
equipment. Baysave was recently approved for a grant to add a waste pump out
system for boats. Our local inshore oyster growing region and docks are not served
by public septic systems. All human wastewater handling systems in use to date in
the Delaware watershed region have proved faulty during times of flooding.
Nantuxent region has tested within normal bacteria levels throughout recent history
except in one test in 2014 specifically designed to catch higher bacterial counts. The
modified test did not identify the bacteria levels as human source. The test report
likely improperly attributed the results to broken septic tanks at vacant houses. Since
that time, all houses in the bayfront test zone of Baypoint and Money Island were
purchased by the state for demolition. The remaining toilets at Baysave facilities will
be served by the permitted marina pump-out system.
We propose a two step solution:
1) Install a pump-out and holding tank solution as quickly as possible to address
current regulatory concerns.
2) Develop a local wastewater treatment solution. We believe that a viable solution
is not as difficult and expensive as some have suggested. A working model of a
wetland wastewater treatment facility has been successfully tested in
Pennsylvania in the Chesapeake watershed headwaters. We believe that a
modified system will work here.
We resubmitted our grant application for pump out and holding tank in late 2016.
Approval is expected in 2017. We have no indication of the schedule for grant
funding or construction.
EEL AND KELP AQUACULTURE
Eel is the most abundant biomass in the Delaware Bay. A viable commercial fishery
exists but faces significant obstacles. There is no commercial aquaculture of eels. We
believe potential exists for this specialty. Likewise, some have proposed that kelp
aquaculture offers significant potential. There is little active research and no
commercial application but recognize the need for stakeholders to take a long-term
view of our changing Delaware Bay ecosystem.
A local marina biology student, Doug Rice, proposes additional research in this field.
Baysave pledges support.
No formal proposals or approvals for eel or kelp aquaculture are available.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Tony Novak, President
PO Box 333, Newport NJ 08345
Amended Baysave Business Plans - April 4, 20017
This page confirms changes to the business plans and proposals originally drafted
January 31, 2017 and complied in the document titled “Baysave 2017”. This
amendment is drafted partially in recognition that Doug Rice will obtain legal advice
on his future business plans. In summary, progress is more or less what we expected
at this early stage.
Boat and trailer ownership
Several boats and trailers are now titled in the name “Money Island LLC” with Tony
Novak acting as authorized representative and person identified on the “Corp code”
issued by NJDMV. This practice is presumed to be effecting in managing liability and
will be continued with the remaining boats and trailers. The marina will handle boats
and trailers contributed by Doug Rice in the same manner. See ‘financing’ section
Some idle unused boats and trailers on the properties have title defects and so
registration will take some time. Boats and trailers are uninsured.
We have not yet recruited a commercial crabber or obtained a commercial crabbing
license. While recruitment efforts continue, we are making alternate plans for a supply
of shedder crabs as an important ingredient for the soft shell crab operation.
The state of New Jersey renewed Tony’s crab aquaculture license for another 5 years
through 2020 but has not issued a commercial crabbing license. We are working with
State Senator Van Drew for a long term solution. The ‘worst case’ is that this
operation limps along for another year.
Tony, Bruce and Doug will soon test new techniques for catching, storing and selling
live and fresh bait. This is expected to contribute a small amount, perhaps $1,000 to
$2,000 to cash flow this season.
Financing through Nantuxent Corporation
Nantuxent Corporation is a Delaware C corporation primarily involved in financing
aquaculture projects. Shares are issued at $1,000 for every contribution of cash,
equipment or real property for use by Baysave or Money Island Marina LLC or other
contracted entity. Equipment and real property will be recognized at cost even if we
acknowledge that current value is lower. Shareholders have the right to redeem
shares by reversing the property contribution. 1,000 shares are authorized. Doug Rice
will be offered shares in exchange for cash or property.
The goal of this financing arrangement is to: 1) limit the legal and financial risk of
shareholders, 2) allow shareholders to participate in gains, if any, and 3) allow
shareholders to exit with greater ease by removing the property they contributed.
Current shareholders are:
William Novak 5
John Novak 5
Tony Novak 3 (additional shares pending at conclusion of Baysave reorganization)
Doug Rice (planned)
Tony Novak is the only current officer serving without compensation. An officer offer
will be extended to Doug Rice.
No progress to report on public or outside financing. This effort will resume after the
court’s acceptance of the Baysave reorganization plan. The goal is to obtain public
financing as a tangible show of governmental support as well as acting a leveraging
and risk management tool.
The pending Money Island Marina wastewater system application was rejected in
March and must be resubmitted with deficiencies addressed. Our strategy is to stick
to this plan until we get an approval. Waste water handling remains a significant long
Real estate acquisition
Tony Novak will purchase and gift to BaySave corporation 15 acres of open space
adjacent to the marina. Doug Rice will issue a first mortgage to Tony Novak in the
amount of $5,000. The land will be used for aquaculture research, crab harvesting
and, eventually we hope, a site for thin spray dredging deposits. This is a new sea
level rise response technique being tested to raise ground levels about two miles
south of us in Fortescue NJ. It has the potential to raise property value over the long
The chapter 12 reorganization is moving ahead as planned. The creditor’s meeting is
April 17 and the reorganization plan will be submitted by May 15. The goal is to
reduce total liabilities to no more than the appraised market value of the land. The
attorney is fully paid and the appraiser is partially paid with $1,000 due.
The marina purchased and repaired two small rental boats for perch fishing. This
brings the total rental fleet to 4 boats (counting the 12’ Lowe and the 14’ from Doug).
So we have our opening to start the boat rental business this spring.
The marina now has two work boats, titled and registered, that share one new
The marina is in final stage of rebuilding 5 new finger docks that make 10 additional
boat slips available for rent. Additionally, we are working on a “tiki bar” dock as a
novelty to attract public attention. Total cost is about $8,000 and more than $6,000
has already been paid.
Screened Picnic Deck Construction
We are partnering with a commercial boat captain to build a screened-in picnic deck
at the ‘point’ of the inlet. This project is in beginning stages with an expected total
cost of $3,000.