RED BANK: PORTMAN READY FOR MAYOR’S MIC

Billy Portman in a scene from the 1994 short film ‘No Time,’ directed by Darren Aronofsky. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

After his mic-drop win in the Red Bank Democratic primary last month, Billy Portman enters the general election campaign as – in all likelihood – the first mayoral candidate in borough history with an IMDB listing and a “filthy” rap record on his résumé.

It turns out the 53-year-old building contractor/cover-band singer has had a long involvement in comedy and films, too.

Read More »

RED BANK: BROADWALK CONCERNS AIRED

A view of Broadwalk at lunchtime last October. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank nj

Red Bank merchants and residents pressed officials with concerns regarding a third season of Broadwalk at a community forum Wednesday night.

With less than a month to go before a disruptive streetscape makeover project wraps up, they called for efforts to address litter, traffic, speeding on residential streets and more.

Read More »

RED BANK: MARKET CLOSING AFTER 121 YEARS

Rosemary Minear wished Andy Citarella well Tuesday morning. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njAfter 121 years of operation, one of Red Bank’s oldest retail businesses plans to close next month.

The end for Citarella’s Meats & Deli continues the rapid disappearance of once-common neighborhood butcher shops and grocers.

Read More »

RED BANK: LBGTQ PRIDE, IN VIVID COLOR

Red Bank’s third LGBTQ Pride in the Park event drew hundreds of colorfully clothed celebrants to Riverside Gardens Park Sunday.

Organized by the borough’s Parks and Rec department, the gathering featured health information booths, juggling lessons, hula-hooping and dancing. Check out additional photos below. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

Read More »

RED BANK: SCOTUS DECISION DRAWS PROTEST

About 150 supporters of women’s reproductive rights gathered in downtown Red Bank for a “community speak-out” on the the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that overturned Roe v. Wade Friday evening.

Read More »

RED BANK: BROAD STREET PROJECT NEARS END

Retractable bollards were installed on Mechanic Street near Broad Street Wednesday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

See UPDATE below

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank nj

A messy, overdue and over-budget makeover of upper Broad Street in Red Bank is expected to conclude in late July, acting borough Administrator Darren McConnell said Wednesday.

The project, which began last November, marked a milestone with the installation this week of retractable hydraulic bollards that will enable quick closure of the street to vehicular traffic.

Still to be determined is when the Broadwalk dining promenade will return for a third, if abbreviated, season.

Read More »

RED BANK: RIVER DREDGINGS PLANNED

An eastward view of the Navesink River from Red Bank earlier this week. (Reader photo. Click to enlarge.)

The Army Corps of Engineers plans to dredge the Navesink River from Red Bank to Sandy Hook in 2023, according to an announcement by sixth-district Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr.

Read More »

RED BANK: SLURS HURLED AT EVENT ATTENDEES

A handful of protesters shouted “pedophile” and other slurs at Red Bank Public Library patrons as they arrived for a childrens’ “Drag Queen Story Hour” event Wednesday morning, library Director Elenyi Glykis told redbankgreen.

Read More »

RED BANK: BUDGET & TAX ON AGENDA

A chart used in a budget presentation last week shows a tax increase of just $5.03 for the year for the owner of a home assessed at the borough average of $469,876. (Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

red bank taxes

The owner of a typical Red Bank home would pay just $5 more in local property taxes under the 2022 budget up for adoption Wednesday night, according to Councilwoman Angela Mirandi.

On the flip side, the average residential valuation on which the tax will be applied is up 16 percent in the past year, said Mirandi, who heads the council’s finance committee.

 

Read More »

LITTLE SILVER: FEMINISTS SEEK CLUB STATUS

Members of the Young Feminists outside Red Bank Regional High in February. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njFrustrated by bureaucracy, representatives of a new Young Feminists group pressed the Red Bank Regional High School board of education for clarity on how to achieve club status last week night.

 

Read More »

RED BANK: ASSAULT ALLEGED, BUT NOT BIAS

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njThree men have been charged with assaulting a 16-year-old Red Bank athlete in what he claimed was a racially motivated attack outside a party in Oceanport last month.

Police, however, made no allegation of racial bias in complaints filed June 10 and obtained by redbankgreen Friday.

Among those charged were two Red Bank Catholic High School football players, including Alex Brown, the quarterback who made national headlines for his onfield performance just a day after his mother died last November.

Read More »

RED BANK: DONUTS, TOYS AND MORE IN CHURN

Luis Hurta at the newly opened Once Bitten Donuts on Broad Street. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallNeed donuts? A vintage camera? Soul-soothing crystals, toys or housewares? Late spring has brought a bouquet of new businesses offering these goodies and more in downtown Red Bank.

Read all about them in this cusp-of-summer edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn.

Read More »

RED BANK: NONPARTISAN ELECTIONS ADVANCE

Ben Forest outside Sickles Market last September. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njLamenting the “unpleasantness” of Red Bank politics in recent years, Charter Study Commission member Ben Forest made a tearful plea for nonpartisan elections Wednesday.

The commission’s other four members informally agreed. They also began sorting through alternatives to the borough form of government in use since the town was carved out of then-sprawling Shrewsbury Township in 1908.

Read More »

FAIR HAVEN: COUNCIL OKS GUN RESOLUTION

Mayor Josh Halpern speaking during Monday’s council session. (Photo from Zoom. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Overriding objections by Mayor Josh Halpern, Fair Haven’s borough council endorsed a resolution calling for common-sense federal gun laws Monday night.

The 6-0 vote followed a showdown between Halpern and several council members over his blockage of resolutions he said are not local issues.

Read More »

RED BANK: STURDIVANT DROPS MAYORAL BID

Councilwoman Jacqueline Sturdivant at the council’s May 25 meeting. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Less than a week after it began, Jacqueline Sturdivant‘s controversial bid for Red Bank mayor ended Monday.

The first-term council member and Democrat dropped her bid after a challenge by the Monmouth County Democratic organization said it identified 29 ineligible signatories to her petition to run in the November election – as an independent.

Read More »

RED BANK: COUNTY DEMS IMPEDE STURDIVANT

Councilmen Ed Zipprich, left, and Michael Ballard at last year’s September 11 memorial service. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

The Monmouth County Democratic organization challenged the legitimacy of Councilwoman Jacqueline Sturdivant‘s bid for Red Bank mayor Monday, redbankgreen has learned.

The move, announced in a blistering press release, bares yet another rift between the county and municipal arms of the party that has dominated Red Bank politics for three decades.

Read More »

RED BANK: PORTMAN MOCKS BALLARD CLAIMS

Billy Portman at home on John Street Sunday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Why did Red Bank mayoral candidate Michael Ballard sign a petition for a candidate who would oppose him if he won last week’s Democratic primary?

To counter “secret deal-making” engineered by opponent Billy Portman, Ballard told redbankgreen Friday night.

In response, Portman mocked the allegation as “business as usual” from a “dying machine.”

Read More »

RED BANK: MERCHANTS BLAST FEE HIKE

Red Tank Brewing owner John Arcara speaking at Wednesday’s council session. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njThe Red Bank council voted Wednesday to boost the fees charged to restaurants to maintain tables in parking spaces converted to streateries.

The action followed claims by two business owners that the hike was onerous.

Read More »

RED BANK: STURDIVANT TO RUN FOR MAYOR

Councilwoman Jacqueline Sturdivant attending her first in-person meeting of the governing body May 25, seated beside interim Business Administrator Darren McConnell. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Hours before Billy Portman pulled off the biggest political upset in memory in the Red Bank Democratic primary Tuesday, another candidate slipped into the race for mayor.

Though elected to the council last November as a Democrat, and an avowed member of defeated mayoral candidate Michael Ballard‘s Democratic “team,” Councilwoman Jacqueline Sturdivant filed to run in the general election as an independent, she confirmed Wednesday.

Read More »

RED BANK: PORTMAN CLAIMS LANDSLIDE WIN

Billy Portman at Red Rock Tap + Grill Tuesday night. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Political neophyte Billy Portman claimed a landslide victory in Red Bank Democrats’ mayoral primary Tuesday night.

At the same time, enough members of an 18-candidate reform slate for the party’s county committee appeared to win races to ensure a change at the top of an organization Portman had criticized for “machine politics.”

 

Read More »