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Sea Isle Mayor: Beach Intact, We're Open For Business

BRIGANTINE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) -- Life after Sandy means trouble at the Jersey Shore, even for communities that were spared the wrath of the hurricane.

The problem seems to be an apparant misperception that none of the tourist towns will be in top shape this summer.

"We're ready for the summer of 2013," Sea Isle Mayor Leonard Desiderio told reporters, including CBS 2's Robin Reiger.

Sea Isle's beaches, promenades and most businesses were unaffected by Sandy.

The city is planning what it calls the biggest ribbon-cutting ceremony in the state on Feb. 15, to kick off the summer beach season a little early this year.

Officials have planned a weekend of events to coincide with the annual Polar Bear Plunge to encourage North Jersey beach goers to head a little further south.

The effort is to remind people that not all Jersey Shore communities were ravaged by Sandy, according to local officials.

"Once you come to Sea Isle City and Cape May County, I don't think you're going to go anywhere else," Desiderio said.

Real estate agents are already gearing up for a busier than usual summer rental season.

"They say 'Well, we always vacationed in LBI and now that that's not an option, we're looking for other options,'" real estate agent Colleen Bell told CBS 2's Reiger.

But the shift is unwelcome for many displaced residents who are renting vacant summer homes as they try to recover from Sandy.

"My wife worries about it. She worries about it every day." renter Sean O'Neil told Reiger. "We have to be out of the property by May 1 and we're actually in the process of finding another place to live now."

New Jersey's loss could be Delaware and Maryland's gains. Those states are anticipating an increase in business this summer since they were spared the worst of Sandy.

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