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Court Allows Village Students to Leave Ocean Schools

  By DON STINE It looks like most Loch Arbour students will not be attending  Ocean Township schools next month following a Superior Court decision this week. The Superior Court of New Jersey, Monmouth County, dismissed an Ocean Township lawsuit against Loch Arbour over leaving the township’s school district and creating its own school board. By withdrawing from the Ocean Township school district property owners in Loch Arbour will see substantial tax savings. “Loch Arbour is out of Ocean Township,” Mayor Paul Fernicola said this week after receiving the court’s decision. “Hopefully, the Ocean Township Board of Education and Council…

Officials Disagree on Schools for Village Students

  By DON STINE Loch Arbour and Ocean Township continue to butt heads over each municipality’s educational formula and it seems the state Department of Education is the only agency that can straighten things out. Ocean Township contends that the existing education formula, which provides $2.1 million annually in Loch Arbour school taxes to the district and sends village students to Ocean Township schools, remains in place. Loch Arbour, however, insists that the old formula is done effective July 1. “As of right now, we have not been given any written direction to remove Loch Arbour from our budget by…

Village Voters Say Yes to Leaving Ocean District

  By DON STINE Loch Arbour voters on Tuesday overwhelmingly voted in support of a special ballot question that would end their educational ties with the Ocean Township school district. In a 93-to-4 vote, voters approved the following ballot question: “Should the Village of Loch Arbour withdraw from the Ocean Township School district and form a separate school district which would enter into send-receive relationships with the West Long Branch School district for grades K-8 and Shore Regional School district for high school?” The ballot was expected to be approved since it would radically lower the school tax rate for…

Loch Arbour Voters Go to Polls April 4

  By DON STINE A state Appellate Court has ruled the April 4 election allowing Loch Arbour residents to vote on whether they want to leave the Ocean Township school district can take place as scheduled. The state Superior Court, Appellate Division rejected an Ocean Township motion to obtain an injunction to prevent the ballot from moving forward. The appeal challenged state Department of Education Commissioner Kimberley Harrington’s Feb. 24 decision to allow the election. “(The court) preserved the principle that a citizen’s right to vote is an essential foundation of this nation’s democratic traditions when it refused Ocean BOE’s…

State Denies Request to Halt Special Village Election

  By DON STINE Loch Arbour residents moved one step closer to separating their village from the Ocean Township school district after the state’s top education official denied a request to halt a special April 4 ballot. State Department of Education Commissioner Kimberley Harrington on Feb. 24 rejected Ocean Township’s request for an injunction to prevent Loch Arbour residents from voting on whether to withdraw from the Ocean Township school district, delivering the latest rebuke to the Board of Education’s effort to prevent Loch Arbour from leaving. Harrington’s rejection of the school board’s attempt to stay the special ballot means…

Historic Preservation Designation Discussed for Loch Arbour

  Historic preservation is on the agenda in Loch Arbour after the Board of Commissioners introduced an ordinance last week that would make the entire village an historic district.   The ordinance, with a public hearing on March 8, seeks to promote historic preservation as an element in the village’s Master Plan. It would effect new buildings, substantial modifications, and demolition to existing buildings. The entire village, with 159 housing units and a handful of businesses, would be in the historic district under the proposed measure.   Commissioner Denis D’Angelo said earlier this week that there are many homes in the village…

Ocean School Officials Hope to Prevent April 4 Special Election

  By DON STINE   The Monmouth County School Superintendent set Tues., April 4 for a special election in Loch Arbour to allow voters to decide whether or not the village should withdraw from the Ocean Township school district and begin sending its students to West Long Branch schools for grades kindergarten through eight and to Shore Regional High School.   On Jan. 20 the Loch Arbour Board of Commissioner passed a resolution approving the special election.   Earlier last week Loch Arbour officials received notice that the Ocean Township Board of Education has filed a notice of appeal with the State Appellate…

State Says Loch Arbour May Leave Ocean School District

  By DON STINE New Jersey’s top state education official recently ruled that Loch Arbour voters can decide if they want to leave the Ocean Township school district, which would result in thousands of dollars of saving for village residents. In a Dec. 22 letter, acting State Commissioner of Education Kimberley Harrington wrote “I grant Loch Arbour’s seeking permission to submit a ballot question on withdrawal from (the Ocean Township School District).” “This is a great day for Loch Arbour after seven years of hard work and perseverance. This decision will bring significant tax relief to property owners and the…

Drone Use Limited in Loch Arbour

  By DON STINE The use of drones and similar devices in Loch Arbour will be limited and controlled under an ordinance adopted by the Board of Commissioners on Aug. 3 by a two-to-one vote. Deputy Mayor Al Cheswick cast the only dissenting vote against adopting the ordinance with Mayor Paul Fernicola and Commissioner Denis D’Angelo voting for it. “I don’t feel it’s a wise use of police resources. I have questions about enforcement and for the overall necessity for it. To me, it is not a problem in general,” Cheswick said. Cheswick also said other questions are raised with…

Loch Arbour Proposes Limiting Drones

  The use of drones and similar devices in Loch Arbour will be limited and controlled under an ordinance introduced at the Board of Commissioner’s July 6 meeting. The ordinance, which will have a public hearing on Aug. 3, regulates the use of drones or other unmanned aircraft within the boundaries of the village. Deputy Mayor Al Cheswick said the ordinance is being considered after a resident suggested several months ago that the village be pro-active on the issue. “As far as I know we have not had problems or complaints with drones but we are trying to address any…

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