By PETE WALTON
David G. Brown II is the new borough administrator in Bradley Beach.
The Long Branch native is the former administrator in Roselle and most recently served as executive director of the Linden Roselle Sewage Authority.
Since January 2018, Brown has worked as the part-time purchasing agent for Bradley Beach. He will continue in that role and become the borough’s new grants manager as well when he comes to the borough full time on March 23.
Brown replaces Kelly Barrett, whose retirement as administrator was approved by the Borough Council at its meeting earlier this week. Deputy Municipal Clerk Erica Kostyz has been performing borough clerk duties since Barrett’s departure on March 2.
Mayor Gary Engelstad announced the hiring of Brown at the meeting, though no formal action was taken on the appointment.
“This was not a unilateral decision but one that is based on the strong endorsement by all members of the council,” the mayor said.
“We made a great choice,” said Councilman John Weber.
Councilman Tim Sexsmith said Brown was “head and shoulders above” the other candidates for the job.
“There were a number of strong candidates but Dave was the best of them,” Councilman Randy Bonnell said, while Councilman Al Gubitosi called Brown “the cream of the crop.”
“He has sewage authority experience, public works leadership, downtown revitalization experience, planning board experience, [and] code enforcement experience,” Engelstad said. “He has initiated several state noticed best practices in the areas or purchasing and local public contract laws.”
Brown is a graduate of Long Branch High School and Kean University, where he received a master’s degree in public administration. He served as a specialist in the New Jersey National Guard and worked for the U.S. Army in the acquisition center at Fort Monmouth.
In 2016, Brown was appointed as a commissioner on the Monmouth County Board of Taxation. He served as treasurer of the Monmouth County Democrats from 2012 until January 2017, when he ran successfully for the party chairmanship. His wife, Tasha Youngblood Brown, is vice president of the Long Branch Board of Education. They have three children.
According to the resolution regarding Barrett’s retirement, she will be paid her salary as administrator and borough clerk through Aug. 18, 2021. Barrett was the long-time municipal court administrator prior to her most recent roles.
A borough ordinance allows retiring employees with more than 25 years of service “the option of accepting a cash separation payment for accumulated sick leave or terminal leave time equal to the employee’s total accumulated sick leave.” The council subsequently capped accumulated sick leave payments in the borough at $25,000.
Barrett chose the terminal leave option.
Borough Attorney Greg Cannon said the council has asked him to review the ordinance regarding payments for employees with more than 25 years of service.
The retirement resolution specified that copies of the agreement would be sent to attorney Peter C. Lucas, who is representing Barrett in a gender discrimination suit against the borough, and to Kevin B. Riordan, who is representing the borough in the matter.
Legal proceedings on the suit are ongoing.