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In Neptune: Seaview Island Residents Concerned About Dredge Material

  By DON STINE Neptune residents living on Seaview Island in the Shark River packed this week’s Township Committee meeting seeking more information about a proposal to use vacant property there to dewater dredge materials from the river. “We were totally blindsided by this and are very upset,” said Annette Bergstein, president of the Seaview Island Homeowners Association. “We want to get a handle on this and be prepared.” The Township Committee recently approved a resolution authorizing use of a township-owned parcel along the Shark River to be used as a temporary dewatering site under a state proposal to dredge…

City Officials Believe Marijuana Should be Legalized

  By DON STINE Asbury Park may be well on its way to becoming the first municipality in New Jersey to legalize marijuana since City Council members said this week they have no problem becoming the first community to do so. “It’s a symbolic gesture,” Mayor John Moor said at Monday’s council workshop.“It’s going to anger some people but, then, we come to history and reality. Sometimes you have to be the first,” he said. The Help Not Handcuffs campaign is calling on the mayor and council to pass a resolution calling for the legalization of marijuana to avert the…

Neptune Mourns Death of School Chief

  By DON STINE Neptune School Superintendent David A. Mooij died on Sunday, just a little more than a week from his official retirement date from the job he had held for 10 years. His official retirement date was July 1. “The Neptune Township Board of Education and the dedicated staff members of the school system pay tribute to Superintendent of Schools David A. Mooij. During his remarkable 40-year tenure as a teacher, coach, supervisor, instructional leader, business administrator and school superintendent, he exemplified a life well-served on behalf of the children of Neptune. “We extend the sympathies of the…

City Footbridge Will Be Replaced

  By DON STINE The historic wooden footbridge over Sunset Lake in Asbury Park, once a trolley bridge, is scheduled to be totally replaced next year after it was seriously damaged during Superstorm Sandy. Christine Ballard, with the city engineering firm of T&M Associates, told city officials recently that the estimated $900,000 project will probably receive a 90 percent cost reimbursement under the Federal Emergency Management Agency program. She said she expects the reimbursement will be received if the bridge is done with “full replacement in-kind,” which means the historic bridge will be replaced just as it is except for…

2 Neptune GOP Write-In Candidates Decline to Run

  By DON STINE Former Neptune Mayor Thomas Catley and Ocena Grove attorney Donald Beekman on June 8 announced that they will not accept their recent write-in nominations to be placed on the ballot for two seats on the Neptune Township Committee. The two men, who are the vice-chairman and chairman of the local Republican Party respectively, said they will, instead, support the “Coalition For Change in Neptune” ticket, which includes both a Republican and Democratic candidate. Residents Dianna Harris, president of the Midtown Urban Renaissance Corporation (MURC) and a Democrat, and Kevin Sheehan, a former Republican candidate, have formed…

Want Special Backstage Seating? See a Concert at the Paramount

  By DON STINE If you ever wanted to be onstage or backstage during a concert by your favorite performer, then you might want to check out the unique concert series beginning at the Paramount Theatre in Asbury Park. The “Where The Audience And The Music Share The Stage” series begins Sat., June 13 with a peformance by Williams Honor on June 13. The series is followed by Graham Parker on June 27; Marshall Crenshaw on July 25; and Loudon Wainwright III on Aug. 22. Concert promoter Sammy Boyd of Allenhurst said that the 200 limited-seating audience will actually be…

Dredging of River Channel is Expected

  By DON STINE A contract to dredge about 106,000 cubic yards of sediment from the environmentally-beleaguered Shark River is expected to be awarded later this summer, according to area legislators. “This project is closer to reality than ever before. This is a result of years of work coordinating with the many agencies that have authority over this project. This project focuses on what we can do- dredge the state navigation channels of the river,” said Monmouth County Freeholder Thomas A. Arnone, a former Neptune City Mayor. “A project like this has to have full cooperation from the federal, state,…

St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church Celebrating 125 Years

  By DON STINE For 125 years, St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church, on the West Side of Asbury Park, has been serving the Lord and its community and plans to continue doing the same into the future. Church vestry member Carolann Nicholas said the church, now with a congregation of about 150, remains an important part of Asbury Park to this day. “It still has a place in the community and is still vital today just as it has been in the past. And if it disappeared, we would be missed. We are a part of the community and people recognize…

Community Urged to Participate in $3.4 Million Literacy Program

  By DON STINE Parents and community members are being urged to participate in a $3.4 million comprehensive literacy improvement program being implemented in Asbury Park’s school district. “We need a specific intervention to take place because three out of four of our students do not read at grade level,” said Sancha Gray, the school district’s director of curriculum and instruction. Residents, especially parents, were invited to the first annual Parent Literacy Conference held at the Middle School Sat., May 30. The event is a kick off the district’s new $3.4 million initiative to improve literacy and reading skills in…

Landmark Venues Open for Season

  By DON STINE Asbury Park’s iconic Convention Hall and Paramount Theatre on the city’s boardwalk will remain open this season as work on installing fire sprinklers continues in the historic complex. And while the landmark building, owned by boardwalk redeveloper Madison Marquette, is 85-years-old, it still needs to be up to state fire safety codes, officials said. Fire Chief Kevin Keddy said the complex had to have sprinklers installed because of its public use under state fire prevention codes and it was agreed that the project would be done in phases. “They are right on schedule and meeting their…

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