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SPRINGSTEEN PROMOTER MAGOVERN DIES

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The Asbury Park Press is reporting the death Monday of Frank ‘Terry’ Magovern of Rumson, an early friend, fan and supporter of Bruce Springsteen and other Asbury Park musicians.

From the story:

In the 1960s and ’70s, Magovern managed bars and booked bands in nearby beach towns, including D’Jai’s in Belmar, the Riptide in Point Pleasant Beach and the Captain’s Garter (later the Headliner) in Neptune. In the early ’80s, Magovern managed Big Man’s West in Red Bank, a club owned by E Street Band saxophonist Clarence Clemons.

Magovern worked with Springsteen in myriad capacities, on tours and in the studio, but was most often described as a personal assistant to Springsteen. On the liner notes to Springsteen’s 1995 album, “The Ghost of Tom Joad,” Magovern is credited for “research.”

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CHEW ON THIS: PETS NEED ORAL CARE, TOO

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By LINDA G. RASTELLI

Sachi, a gorgeous eleven-year-old Siberian husky, is sitting on a metal table at the Red Bank Veterinary Hospital displaying the smile her owners say makes her “the mayor” of her Holmdel neighborhood.

Meantime, Dr. Keith Stein and veterinary technician Christine Chevalier are preparing to send the mayor into dreamland, intravenously.

Seconds later, Sachi stops moving, her stunning pale-blue eyes go blank, and her body goes limp.

It’s the moment pet owners fear most about animal dentistry, says Stein. They worry their pet won’t wake up from anesthesia.

That’s no surprise to Luisa Visconti, who with her husband, Frank Daly, has owned Sachi, a rescue dog from Long Island, for four years. Visconti took the day off and was heading to a Pilates class that morning to try to relax.

“I was very strung out, very concerned,” she recalled later. “I just wanted to her to come home safe and alive.”

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SANDY HOOK DEAL GETS FRESH SCRUTINY

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A federal watchdog agency will look into the circumstances under which a Rumson developer obtained rights to convert former military housing at Fort Hancock into commercial space on Sandy Hook without showing he has the money to do the job, newspapers are reporting today.

Sandy Hook Partners, headed by Rumson’s James Wassel, has gotten repeated extensions to obtain financing for the work, whereas similar projects elsewhere in the U.S. were required to show proof of financing before winning approval, opponents of the deal contend.

From the Star-Ledger:

Lawrence Luttrell, the attorney representing Save Sandy Hook, said word of the inspector general’s probe is welcome. He said Wassel has continually blamed the litigation for his lack of financing — even though it began well after Wassel should have had the money in place.

“We’re pleased that somebody’s finally looking into this because it’s absolutely insane how long this has been going on,” he said.

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PUTTING OYSTERS BACK TO BED

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Today’s Star-Ledger takes a look at the efforts of NewYork/New Jersey Baykeeper Andy Willner to restore oyster beds in the New York region, including in the Navesink and Shrewsbury Rivers.

The article offers some historical perspective on the economic importance of oysters, and the roles of overharvesting and pollution in killing giant oyster beds by 1920.

Then reporter Tom Hester turns to the Baykeeper’s efforts. They’re being funded in part by a $1 million settlement with Chevron over a 10,000-gallon crude oil spill off Perth Amboy.

The effort entails dropping “millions of dime-size young oysters attached to clean clam shells into the Navesink River at Red Bank, the Raritan Bay near Keyport, and off Liberty Island in the Upper Bay.”

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OH ME OH MY: KAREN SMITH RETURNS

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She’s long been a force on her native island of Jamaica, and had a chart-topping hit there with “Oh Me Oh My” some years back.

Cabaret singer Karen Smith doesn’t have much of a profile in the States, but she’s got a toehold in the Red Bank area, thanks to an appearance at the Two River Theater in 2005.

She returns this week for a concert Wednesday night at the TRT. The show is a fundraiser for the Parker Family Clinic and the Red Bank Family Support Center and is being produced by soon-to-be-ex-Red Bank-resident W. David Tarver.

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WET OFF THE PRESS: THE WATERFRONT PLAN

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After a series of discussions over the past couple of years about how to improve access to and the usability of the Swimming River and Navesink River shorelines, the Red Bank Waterfront Plan is finally ready.

Have at it, folks. It’s at the borough website. Hard copies are available at the borough clerk’s office.

The 110-page paperback plan, prepared by the urban planning and architecture firm of Wallace, Roberts & Todd of Philadelphia, is filled with color photos, aerial shots and blue-sky concept drawings of what might be done to turn inaccessible patches of riverside into strollable and explorable stretches.

Given the state of the borough’s wallet, it’s clearly a kind of Christmas wish list. But Lou DiMento, chairman of the borough environmental commission, says it has value.

“The benefit of the document is it gives people a sense of, ‘What if they got really ambitious — how could we make some very significant waterfront improvements?'” he says.

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GIVE ‘EM AN INCH, THEY’LL TAKE A BLOCK

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One of the crappiest — and, apparently, most star-crossed — corners of Red Bank seems destined to stay that way for the foreseeable future.

Last week, the new owner of property at the southeast intersection of Monmouth and West streets, just a block east of the train station, lost a battle to have a development plan for the site heard by the planning board.

At issue: whether one inch of space between proposed structures makes them distinct buildings.

The decision by the zoning board was strictly a jurisdictional one, and answered whether the zoning or planning board should have oversight of the plan. But it could lead to yet more litigation over a parcel that has seen it’s share of courtroom tussles, the lawyer for the would-be developer says.

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WHERE HAVE I SEEN THIS?

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Last week’s ‘Where,’ like so many before it, was like riding a bike for the Colmorgen kids.

As they correctly identified with their first-in entry, the picture showed an open-air display stand at Shrewsbury Bicycles on Route 35.

Jenn Woods, Cheryl Ameika, Rico Suave and Islandere2 also got it.

But you’ve got to get up pretty early to beat those Colmorgens. Mother Catherine Louise Colmorgen, who’s a youthful 89 years old, tells us that son Carl is online at the crack of dawn Thursdays to see what we’ve posted and compare notes with brother Bob and sister Kathy Lou. And if he’s not sure of the answer, by 7a, Carl is off in his car in an effort to verify or track down the answer.

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BASIE, TWO RIVER GET BIG FUNDING BUMPS

Both the Count Basie Theatre and the Two River Theater Company were major beneficiaries of whopping state funding increases as part of an effort to “create parity” among arts organizations, according to today’s Star-Ledger.

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The Basie’s fiscal year 2008 grant from the state Council on the Arts soared by 42 percent, to $223,325, up more than $94,000 from 2007, and the Two Rivers’ allotment doubled, to $139,477, from $69,183.

“We think it represents an acknowledgment by the council of the growth we’ve had over the past couple of years,” Two River managing director Guy Gsell told the Asbury Park Press. “We’re serving a wider geographic area, and have had an incredible period of growth.”

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MAYBE THEY NEEDED LEGAL-SIZED PAPER

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Seems somebody may have been desperate for office supplies.

The Asbury Park Press has a story this afternoon about four out-of-staters arrested Sunday at the Staples store in Shrewsbury for trying to pass a stolen credit card number.

Apparently, the suspects decided to try that store after being rejected at another Staples just up Route 35 in Middletown.

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MATERNITY HOUSE RETURNS

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A Roman Catholic charitable group has resurrected a home on Drs. James Parker Boulevard to provide temporary housing and childcare assistance to homeless mothers and mothers-to-be.

Madonna House @ Red Bank Inc., a registered 501c3 charity, will hold an open house marking the reopening of the facility, known as the Pat Daly House, on Saturday.

“It’s been there, but it hasn’t been active for about a year and a half,” says Carolyn Fitzpatrick, a spokeswoman. In the interim, she says, “the program was being fine-tuned.”

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DO WE NEED A COMMUNITY CENTER?

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Dr. Diana Salvador, above, says yes; Council President Sharon Lee, at right, agrees, but says citizens will have to get behind the idea first.

Kids’ activist David Prown’s request that the Red Bank council put the brakes on a plan to auction off a corner property on the West Side found no takers on the governing body last night.

But it may have sparked a broader discussion about whether the time has come for the borough to build a community center, something it hasn’t had for decades.

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RUMSONITE INDICTED IN $75M OIL PLOT

A Rumson man remained jailed on Long Island yesterday on federal charges othat he was involved in a $75 million scheme to cheat heating oil customers through rigged meters on delivery trucks, according to an article in Newsday.

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Bail hearings for Tonino Solimine, 49, and three other executives at two companies were postponed yesterday until FBI and IRS agents could complete their inspection of trucks owned by the two companies.

After checking out more than 30 delivery vehicles they seized and others owned by the two companies, the agents hadn’t found any that were not rigged, Newsday said sources had told it.

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TALKING TOLL ROADS

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The good news, we suppose, is that you don’t have to get on a toll road to get there.

Assemblywoman and state Senate candidate Jennifer Beck of Red Bank will co-host a town hall meeting tonight in Freehold Township to discuss the fate of New Jersey’s toll roads.

Or, as a press release from Beck’s office calls it, “Governor Corzine’s proposal to sell the State’s toll roads.”

Corzine has vowed to avoid a sale to a private entity yet remained coy about how he intends to “monetize” the roadways — the Parkway, Turnpike and Atlantic City Expressway.

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PROWN: SAVE THIS BUILDING

Img_8386Cash it out, or turn it into a community center?

To the borough of Red Bank, it’s an asset beter turned into cash.

To kids’ activist David Prown, it’s about to become a missed opportunity.

On the agenda for Monday’s council meeting is a second reading of an ordinance authorizing the auction of a town-owned building at the corner of Bridge Avenue and Drs. Parker Boulevard. [Postscript: the first part of that sentence is wrong. The item appeared on the July 9 agenda as a resolution, not an ordinance. Sorry for the error.]

At the moment, it’s rented for $1 a year by the Community YMCA, which offers programs for pre-schoolers in the mornings and primary-school-aged kids in the afternoon at the facility.

By the end of the day on Aug. 10, the council is hoping it’ll put an $800,000 bulge in the town’s wallet.

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MUNCHMOBILE VISITS, AND WE’RE ON IT

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It’s as Jersey as the Sopranos: the Star-Ledger’s Munchmobile, a van with a giant polyurethane wiener on the roof that tours the state every summer in search of the best eats — ice cream, burgers, Italian, seafood, whatever.

Well, yesterday was a special ‘blunch’ edition of the weekly tour to which a half-dozen of the state’s independent bloggers were invited. And even though redbankgreen rankles at the ‘blog’ label, we set aside our semantic tic and climbed aboard, not wanting to miss out on what some people consider the ride of a lifetime.

Also on board? Two other hyperlocal news sites — Hoboken411 and Baristanet, which serves Montclair, Glen Ridge and Bloomfield — and two foodie sites — Off the Broiler and Go Out Jersey.

On the menu? Pizza.

First stop? Brothers Pizza on West Front Street right here in Red Bank, followed by a handful of other places scattered around north Jersey.

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SEEN THIS GUY?

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Red Bank police today released this sketch of a suspect wanted in the sexual assault of a woman in a downtown parking lot in the early morning of Sunday, July 8.

Description: Hispanic male, round face, olive complexion, five-foot-six, medium build, age 20’s. Seen wearing blue jeans, dark gray or black hooded sweatshirt with white lettering on the front.

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STUNNER: BORO DROPS SINGH CHARGE

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Just hours after a municipal court hearing on the latest allegations of an alleged sale of alcohol to a minor, Red Bank police are dropping the charges, redbankgreen has learned.

Borough attorney Tom Hall tells us that Javier Lopez-Ruiz, the 19-year-old Middletown man arrested for buying beer from the store on July 10, has recanted his story about not being carded by store employee Balvinder Singh.

That leaves the borough without any testimony linking Lopez-Ruiz to Singh, and thus, no case.

“We had to do the right thing,” Hall told redbankgreen early this afternoon. “I can’t prove any further violations of the law.”

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KARA HOMES OWNER TARGETS ‘HENCHMEN’

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Zuhdi Karagjozi, the Rumson man who founded Kara Homes, claims in court papers that the bankrupt homebuilder’s chief restructuring officer and “his henchmen” are poised to cheat him, according to a story on the Asbury Park Press website.

From the story:

Karagjozi in court papers filed Wednesday said Perry Mandarino, Kara’s chief restructuring officer, rejected investors Karagjozi lined up in the past two weeks that would have offered a higher dividend to unsecured creditors.

Instead, Mandarino stuck with two investors — Glen Fishman and Plainfield Specialty Holdings II Inc. — who plan to work closely with Mandarino’s company, Traxi LLC., Karagjozi said.

“The only way the unsecured creditors and I can be cheated out of what is rightfully ours is if this Court allows Mandarino and his henchmen to ram through the proposed plan without giving me and the members of the committee of unsecured creditors who voted against Mandarino’s plan a reasonable period of time to bring in an alternative proposal,” the court documents say.

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SINGH: ‘IT’S ON THE TAPE’

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By LINDA G. RASTELLI

The case against Best Liquors clerk Balvinder Singh, accused of selling beer to a 19-year-old two weeks after the Borough Council revoked the store’s alcohol license for sales to minors, was adjourned in Red Bank Municipal Court this morning.

A date for the trial, which is to be prosecuted by borough attorney Tom Hall instead of the borough prosecutor, has not yet been scheduled.

Singh, in an interview afterward, said he would plead not guilty to the charge.

“He had a Mexican ID, and it’s on the tape,” he told redbankgreen, referring to customer Javier Lopez-Ruiz, the Middletown resident who was arrested July 10 for illegally buying beer. Lopez-Ruiz implicated Singh, police contend.

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