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Shore residents fight huge mansion

AVALON, N.J., Oct. 7 (UPI) -- A potato chip magnate's 40-room mansion, under construction on the Jersey Shore, has spawned a flurry of lawsuits.

Save Avalon Dunes, a group formed in the battle against the house, has sued the borough of Avalon, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and Michael Rice, president of Utz Quality Foods, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported. Rice has sued the borough for refusing permission for a swimming pool.

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Rice originally sought permission for a 20,000-square-foot house. In negotiations with the state and local officials, he scaled down the house to a mere 14,000 square feet, almost 10 times the size of the building now on the property.

The construction site is in the midst of the Avalon High Dunes, an area of coastal forest and grass. SAD decided to sue after a summer of demonstrations.

"We don't want to look like Wildwood, and the borough is basically doing nothing to prevent this," SAD founder Elaine Scattergood told the Inquirer. "It's not just this one issue or this one house, it's a pattern of development that could forever change the way Avalon is and has been for a very long time."

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