Dostie halloranNeighbors Marc Dostie, left, and Mark Halloran show off some of the debris found in soil laid down recently at East Side Park.

Evidence of glass and ceramic shards in fill dirt installed recently in Red Bank’s East Side Park prompted a call for a criminal investigation at last night’s bimonthly council meeting.

Mark Halloran of Mori Place brought a bagful of the debris to Monday night’s borough council session. It included glass, large stones and a piece of what appeared to be pottery.

“In a five-minute space of time, we pulled out some rather oversized pieces of glass, rocks and china,” said Halloran. The topsoil “appeared to have a lot of debris in it,” he said.

Borough Administrator Stanley Sickels told the council that the debris emerged after rains and the melting of recent snows in areas of the park where topsoil was laid down several months ago to fill holes and depressions.

“It’s almost borderline criminal,” said Councilman Mike DuPont, an attorney. “It’s got to be a deceptive practice. This shouldn’t be a civil complaint. It sounds like (the vendor) duped the borough.”

He suggested referring the matter to the Monmouth County Prosecutor.

According to public utilities director Gary Watson, the soil was
purchased from Route 34 Gravel and Sand in Wall Township, a vendor the
borough hadn’t dealt with before.

He told redbankgreen that he was angry when he learned
about the debris.

“We bought what we thought was perfect topsoil,” he said.

Now, to prevent having the field taken out of commission for most of the
year, a turf management consultant hired by the borough has suggested
allowing grass seed planted last year to continue germinating. The
debris would then be raked out once the grass is strong enough to
withstand raking, Watson said.

Watson said further discussions on the matter are scheduled for this
Meantime, a  fence that had surrounded the affected area and removed before the debris was discovered has been re-installed, he said.

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