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Asbury Park Establishes Code and Quality of Life Committee

  By DON STINE Improving the quality of life for Asbury Park residents is the goal of a new committee established by Councilwoman Yvonne Clayton. The Code/Quality of Life Committee held its first meeting on March 21. “Improving the quality of life in the city was on of the things I campaigned on,” said Clayton, who was seated on the council in January. She said the 12-member committee is made up of a cross-section of community members from all areas of the city. “We have broken up into various subcommittees to focus on different issues,” she said. Issues include dealing…

Interlaken Feasibility Study Costs to Be Discussed

  By DON STINE The cost for a feasibility study to look into merging Interlaken with neighboring Loch Arbour, which may result in a one-time tax increase of about $121 to $193 for the average Interlaken homeowner in 2015, will be reviewed by the Borough Council during a special meeting on Wed., April 8. “The requests for proposals came in considerably higher than we anticipated,” Interlaken Mayor Michael Nohilly said earlier this week. The borough sent out a request for proposals (RFP) to do a feasibility study and two were submitted by the March 27 deadline. A $50,000 proposal was…

Detour Deteriorating City Road in Asbury

  By DON STINE Asbury Park officials and residents are seeking to have New Jersey Transit buses use Asbury Avenue as the detour route for the Sunset Avenue Bridge project rather than Fourth Avenue, which runs entirely through residential neighborhoods. “The city did not do the best planning (for the detour), especially using Fourth Avenue,” resident Daniel Weiss said at this week’s City Council workshop. On Feb. 25, the council created the Sunset Avenue Bridge Traffic Safety Liaison Committee, a volunteer group of city residents concerned about the detour route during the closing of the Sunset Avenue Bridge. The Sunset…

Shop Ocean Township and Receive Rebate on Property Tax

  By DON STINE Ocean Township business owners are being urged to sign up to participate in the “Own Ocean” program that gives residents a rebate on their property taxes if they shop at a township-based business. “It is a property tax rewards program that tries to put money back in the taxpayer’s pocket,” Mayor Christopher Siciliano said. The first meeting on the program will be held Fri., March 28, from 7:30 to 9 a.m. in the township council chambers at 399 Monmouth Road. “It will be a breakfast meeting and the response has been pretty good. We have about…

Parking Survey Says: Hire Professional and Raise the Rates

  By DON STINE One of the first things Asbury Park can do to bring its parking problem under control is to hire a professional person to oversee and manage it. And while the city’s parking utility brought in a little more than $2.5 million last year “no one is planning or managing the system,” said Gregory A. Shumate, a Senior Associate with parking consultant Desman Associates, based in New York City. Last June, the council hired Desman Associates to conduct a thorough study throughout the city, including at the waterfront and downtown, on Main Street, and in the Springwood…

$2.5 Million Tennis Center Planned in Ocean Township

  By DON STINE An eight-court tennis center will be built on W. Park Avenue in Ocean Township under what Mayor Christopher Siciliano said is “an historic partnership” between a private company and the township. “This is a win-win situation for the township and an historic event in that it is the first time private and public entities are coming together to build a facility that will be useful to residents,” he said. The mayor said that, after three years of negotiations, a deal was signed last week to build the $2.5 million Park Avenue Tennis Center in front of…

Asbury Park Baptist Church Welcomes 1st Female Deacon

  By DON STINE Long-time church member Mary S. Owens Scott has become the first female deacon at the Second Baptist Church of Asbury Park. Scott, who was ordained on Jan. 18, said it is an uncommon event for a woman to become a deacon in the Baptist Church. “There are probably less than a dozen female deacons in the Shore area. It is not common throughout the Baptist Church,” she said.“There are deaconesses who assist their husbands, who would be a deacon, but not many woman deacons.” Scott, 59, has been a member of the Second Baptist Church since…

Judge Dismisses Asbury Park Election Case

  By DON STINE A Monmouth County Superior Court judge today dismissed a case that sought to force a runoff election in Asbury Park for the mayoral spot won by John Moor in the November election. Remond Palmer and Board of Education candidate Arva Council, two candidates on the unsuccessful A-Team slate in the election, filed the lawsuit seeking 355 vote-by-mail ballots disqualified by the Monmouth County Board of Elections to be ruled as valid. “(The county Elections Board) did not exceed their discretion in disqualifying the ballots” Judge Dennis O’Brien ruled today. A number of ballots were disqualified during…

Agencies Will Meet to Discuss Dredging

  By DON STINE Future dredging the Shark River is looking as uncertain as ever although for the first time all agencies involved will be sitting down together to discuss a solution. Neptune Township Committeeman Randy Bishop, who has been a major and vocal supporter of the dredging, said the issue has been approached to the state Department of Transportation and the state Department of Environmental Protection. “And for the first time we are all sitting together and looking for possibilities as one group,” he said this week. In a joint Jan. 15 press release, state Sen. Jennifer Beck, Freeholder…

City Officials Reject Plan to Use North Beach for Staging Area

  By DON STINE The North Beach area in Asbury Park will not be used as a staging area for a federal beach replenishment project from Loch Arbour to Long Branch. Asbury Park officials said last week that a proposal to use the North Beach as a staging area is being rejected, primarily due to a lack of information and a set timeframe for the site to be vacated. “There are too many unanswered questions and not enough information. It just made no sense to us that the Army Corps said they will begin the project in the beginning of…

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