Neptune City officials have designated the area between Steiner Avenue and 5th Avenue to Memorial Drive as an area in need of redevelopment, allowing the Borough Planner to prepare a Redevelopment Plan.
The parcel of land was originally split between Neptune City and Neptune but as of January 1, 2016, became designated property of Neptune City. The area houses buildings that have been there since the 1950s according to Mayor Robert Brown.
“We’re going to make sure (the redeveloper) does what’s in the best interest of Neptune City,” said Brown who also said the area, which is eight blocks from the ocean and a “gateway into Neptune City from Bradley Beach” is very viable. The parcel of land is directly across the street from AJ Produce, which is refurbishing its entire building.
Brown and Councilwoman Pamela Renee addressed concerned residents regarding the snow removal from sidewalks. Renee said that the borough had about 325 residents that were issued warning notices after the snowstorm to clear their sidewalks of snow.
“Clearing the sidewalks is 100 percent for the safety of our residents,” said Brown noting that the upcoming reverse 911-phone call to residents would also notify residents. “If you continually refuse to shovel your sidewalks, believe me, Mr. Reynolds will eventually give you a summons.”
During City Council reports, Councilman Andrew Wardell discussed Neptune City’s scores for the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC). Wardell said Neptune City’s scores were average, but they had increased from year’s past.
“I do know the difficulty of that test,” Wardell said. “It’s still new and a work in progress. Those numbers I think are very rough. But they did improve which is a positive.”
Resident Michaela O’Brien, who’s vote was originally rejected by the Monmouth County Board of Elections, but then accepted after her January 29 court date, tying Michael Skudera and Richard Pryor, addressed the council and the empty council seat. Skudera stepped down from the council after it was determined there was a tie vote.
“I do hope that Michael Skudera and Richard Pryor have a really good race and I hope whomever actually deserves it sits in that seat and it’s good to see it empty,” O’Brien said. “It isn’t really your control, it’s ours, we only choose you to represent us. So with the power of those seats, I hope you do what’s right for Neptune City.”
A runoff election between Pryor and Skudera for the council seat will be held March 22.