COUNCIL BIZ: LAW STILL NOT IN THE BAG
James Giannell took his place at the council table, and a free-range plastic bag blew around out on Monmouth Street.
Notes from last night’s bimonthly meeting of the Red Bank Borough Council:
An ordinance to ban plastic bags commonly used by supermarkets and small stores is undergoing yet another overhaul. Introduced for at least the second time in a year two weeks ago, the measure is now being tweaked to “specifically delineate the bags we’re trying to eliminate” and will have to be re-introduced next month, says sponsor Councilman Mike DuPont.
Earlier this month, Councilwoman Grace Cangemi questioned whether the proposed ban which has the support of Foodtown, Whole Foods and other merchants, says DuPont would have left supermarket bags alone, because it would have banned only non-recyclable plastic bags. Existing bags are now recyclable.
At the time, DuPont termed the question “obstructionist.” After last night’s meeting, he said “what I didn’t like was that I didn’t get any feedback for nine months” and heard Cangemi’s concern only after the bill had been reintroduced.
Mayor Pasquale Menna says the next version of the ordinance will have “some substantial changes, both from the legal and public policy standpoints.”
James Giannell joined the council as the replacement for John Curley, who resigned in July when he moved out of town. Giannell is expected to serve only four months, and to be replaced by one of the top two vote-getters among four council candidates on the November ballot.
The council adopted an amendment to a parking-permit ordinance that redbankgreen reported on yesterday. Specifically, the council eliminated a requirement that homeowners on permit parking streets demonstrate they don’t have off-street parking in order to qualify for a permit.
“We found, as we were going through our ordinances, that it wasn’t being enforced,” attorney Tom Hall told the audience.
Private attorney Bill McCarter has filed suit in July on behalf of a postal worker over the permits; in his lawsuit, he spotlighted the borough’s failure to enforce the requirement.
The council approved the “I Build, U Build, We Build” Family Day at Count Basie Field on September 20; a fire prevention expo hosted by the Red Bank Volunteer Fire Department in the White Street parking lot on October 19; and the Red Bank Jazz & Blues Festival next May 31 through June 2.
DuPont said the advisory committee that was created to explore the possibility of Red Bank creating a community center would have a full report of recommendations to the council in September.
Here’s the agenda.