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School Officials Take Extra Steps to Ensure Student, Staff Safety

  By JOANNE PAPAIANNI and DON STINE School officials in the area have taken measures to ensure the safety of students and staff in the wake of the deadly shootings at a Florida school. Security has been increased and letters have been sent home to parents about school safety. John Napolitani, president of the Asbury Park Education Association said security was increased at city schools after the shooting. “They checked every individual student coming into the school at the Middle School,” he said earlier this week. Napolitani, who lives in Ocean Township, says he does worry about his own children…

JCP&L Building Sold in Allenhurst

  By DON STINE The long-vacant Jersey Central Power and Light Company buildings in Allenhurst have been successfully sold through auction and plans for the building are now pending. “I think the town is excited and we are hopeful. These buildings have been abandoned for over ten years and are starting to fall into disrepair. The are looking forward to their renovation, which will help our Main Street area,” Mayor David McLaughlin said earlier this week. Allenhurst Power Station LLC, was the successful bidder. The corporation is headed by Jon Leidersdorff, owner of the Lake House Music Academy in Asbury…

Tinton Falls Fire Districts Consider Moving Election

  By DON STINE Tinton Falls’ two fire district are considering moving their annual elections, now held in February, to November and they are also exploring increasing shared services or possible consolidation of the two districts. A 2017 state law allows fire districts throughout the state to move their annual elections to the general election in November, such like was recently done with school districts. “It would be part of the general election and the county would bear the cost,” Fire District #1 President Andrew Calvo said. He said the two districts are looking at the “pluses and minuses” of…

Demolition of Wardell-Welsh Dairy House in Neptune Discussed

  By DON STINE The old Wardell-Welsh dairy house on Old Corlies Avenue in Neptune will probably be razed, township officials said at this week’s Township Committee meeting. Mayor Nicholas Williams said that the building, at 703 Old Corlies Ave., is “in pretty tough shape.” “I don’t think we should put money into rehabilitating it. A park will be something where everybody can come and enjoy it. (The house) is just an eyesore now,” he said. Township business Administrator Vito Gadaleta said the old house, which is more than 100 years old, would cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to…

Proposal to Hire Preservation Specialist

  By DON STINE Neptune is hoping to hire an historical preservation professional to review the existing guidelines governing historic preservation, particularly as it applies to the Historic Preservation Commission. The action is being taken “ in anticipation of recommendations for updating the guidelines to certain standards and, beyond that, to assist the Historic Preservation Commission (HPC) in the future,” Township Business Administrator Vito Gadaleta said. “The professional will work with the HPC to review and make recommendations to the current guidelines,” he said. Gadaleta said the Township Committee made a determination that there needs to be such a review…

There’s No Church but There is a Tax bill

  By DON STINE The Union Baptist Church in Neptune may not physically be there right now but congregants still want to worship the Lord and save souls. But that will come at a price – the Neptune tax assessor just slapped the church with a $3,500 tax bill. “The congregation is not in a position to fund this bill,” Rev. John Wright, pastor of the church at 2101 W. Bangs Ave., said at this week’s Township Committee meeting. Wright and about two dozen congregants and supporters attended the meeting. The church was built at its current site in 1972…

In Ocean: Modifications Made to Proposed Town Center

  By DON STINE Modifications, based on public input, have been made to a proposal to develop a 32-acre property at the intersection of Route 35 and Deal Road in Ocean Township. A special presentation was held Jan. 29 at the high school with about 100 people attending. It is the second large public presentation on the project. The previous one also held at the high school last year. “This project has evolved in the past four or five years. We have been listening to residents and officials and scaled the project back,” said Maurice Zekaria, owner of Paramount Realty,…

Neptune Officials Tackle Homeless Issue

  By DON STINE Homelessness in Neptune was an issue at this week’s Township Committee meeting, with residents offering a variety of opinions on what officials should do. “This is a real problem and it does not get enough attention. A more permanent fix is what the target should be,” Mt. Carmel Baptist Church Rev. Edmond Lee Sr. said at the meeting. A group of 10 people, who are known as “The Woodsmen of Neptune,” live in a wooded lot behind the ShopRite, off Neptune Boulevard, near Route 66. The camp has been there for about seven years but it…

In Neptune: Dream Center Collecting Diapers

  By DON STINE For the needy or people going through a disaster, providing food, clothing and housing are the first things to come to mind- but how about diapers? “We have been providing diapers since Superstorm Sandy. We try to focus on unmet needs and we saw this as a major unmet need that we tried to fill. Other organizations were focusing on food, clothing, housing but not on this need- so we do,” said Isaac Friedel, the lead pastor at the Jersey Shore Dream Center located in Neptune. The center will be collecting disposable baby diapers, for newborns…

Men’s Ministry Hosts Breakfast

  By DON STINE The guest speaker at a special prayer breakfast, hosted by the Men’s Ministry of the Second Baptist Church of Asbury Park, was a no-show Sat., Jan. 20- but through no fault of his own. Asbury Park School Superintendent Lamont Repollet was recently nominated by Gov. Phil Murphy to be his new Commissioner of Education- the first African-American to hold the post- but, unfortunately, Repollet is unable to have any speaking engagements until his nomination is approved by the state Senate. Repollet, 47, became schools superintendent in 2014 and his appearance at the prayer breakfast was scheduled…

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