Skip to content

A town square for an unsquare town

redbankgreen

Standing for the vitality of Red Bank, its community, and the fun we have together.

RED BANK: DEMS CALL FOR CHARTER STUDY

horgan-zipprich-ballard-010118-500x375-4519171Kathy Horgan with fellow Democrats and council members Ed Zipprich, center, and Michael Ballard in 2017. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

election-2021-6912124Again taking aim at their own party’s chairman, four Red Bank council members and Mayor Pasquale Menna have called for a charter study to review the borough’s form of government – and possibly, change the electoral process.

triggiano-yngstrom-yassin-010119-2-500x332-8637940Councilmembers Kate Triggiano, Erik Yngstrom and Hazim Yassin at a council meeting in 2019. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

Slamming what they termed “total dysfunction created” by party chairman and fellow council member Ed Zipprich, the council majority – Kate Triggiano, Hazim Yassin, Kathy Horgan and Erik Yngstrom – “have joined with Mayor Pasquale Menna in calling for a change to Red Bank’s form of government,” they said in a statement issued Wednesday afternoon.

“I am a Democrat. I will continue to be a Democrat. I will continue to run as a Democrat,” said Triggiano. “But I’ve come to see how our town’s outdated system drags our beloved community down. It’s time for a change. It’s time for the council to adopt an ordinance for a charter study commission and potential change to our borough government.”

Triggiano and Yassin, seeking second terms, face a June primary challenge by Zipprich-backed newcomers Bruce Maida and Jacqueline Sturdivant.

Increasingly over the past year, the self-styled “majority Democrats” have been at odds with Zipprich and Councilman Michael Ballard over issues including the fate of the borough Senior Center; the work of the Redevelopment Agency; spending and more.

The rupture burst into public view in February, with Zipprich’s announcement that Maida and Leroi Royal Jones had local party backing to seek the seats now held by Yassin and Triggiano. Jones later dropped out, citing unforeseen circumstances, and was replaced on the ticket by Sturdivant.

“With a handful of signatures from a community of 12,000 Red Bank residents,” the majority group said Wednesday, referring to the local organization, “Zipprich has made his wishes known – those who do not serve him will be replaced.

“After five of his six colleagues on the Borough Council refused his party boss demands, and four have outvoted him at public meetings in the best interests of Red Bank, Zipprich has decided it is easier to to try to replace his colleagues than it is to work with them.”

Zipprich did not immediately respond to a redbankgreen request for comment Wednesday. We’ll include it here if one is received.

In February, Triggiano and Yassin accused Zipprich of pursuing “a vendetta… that reeks of boss politics,” and said they would seek support from the Monmouth County Democrats, which controls the order of candidate name placement on ballots, seen as a key determinant of winners and losers.

“While Zipprich tried to throw Triggiano and Yassin out of the local Red Bank Democratic Party for the 2021 Primary, Zipprich does not have support to do so from the Monmouth County Democrats,”  Yassin said in the latest statement. “We had to go to the Monmouth County Democratic Party and tell them what was happening in Red Bank.

“The great Democrats that lead our county see how destructive the local chairman’s personal vendettas have been to our party as a whole, and we’ve secured a spot on the Democratic primary line to run for what is right for Red Bank,” he said.

From the statement:

“Kate and I have talked about this and I agree,” said Councilman Hazim Yassin. “We’re committed to making Red Bank better. We’re not going to see what happens in the primary and then do it. We’re going to lead. We’re going to show our local chairman what Democrats can do when we lead from the front instead of hiding behind a curtain.”

“I’ve worked too hard for Red Bank to watch one person manipulate an antiquated system to the detriment of the town,” said five-term Councilwoman Kathy Horgan. “Others who’ve served here know it too, but they waited too long. We won’t make the same mistake, and we will lead Red Bank Democrats into a new era and a new modern form of government that has the people of Red Bank as its top priority.”

“Nothing is supposed to run like this,” agreed Councilman Erik Yngstrom. “When the four of us agreed to stick together against Ed’s nonsense, we also all agreed to stick to the Management Enhancement Report for the good of the town. That Report says that Red Bank needs a change of government, and I’m all for it.”

Here’s the full statement: Red Bank Democrats 040721

The statement was issued hours after redbankgreen posted an article reporting an absence of movement on the issues of charter reform and nonpartisan elections.

The statement also describes a “leadership retreat” initiated by Yassin and Triggiano, before they took office, to “help the council develop its working relationships and a new start,” aided by a volunteer professional.

But the meeting “was a waste of time – our Chairman did nothing but play on his phone for four hours; I was embarrassed for the person that volunteered to help us,” Yassin is quoted as saying.

None of the majority members immediately responded to questions emailed them Wednesday, including why the session was deemed necessary.

Local Republican Chairman Jonathan Maciel Penney, who is one of his party’s two “placeholder” candidates to unseat Triggiano and Yassin, was unavailable for comment.

Separately, borough resident Scott Broschart has been spearheading an effort dubbed “Red Bank First” to force a form-of-government change via voter referendum.

If you value the kind of news coverage redbankgreen delivers, please become a paying member. Click here for details about our new, free newsletter and membership information.

Remember: Nothing makes a Red Bank friend happier than to hear "I saw you on Red Bank Green!"
Partyline
VOLUNTEERS GET INTO THE WEEDS
Toting plastic trash bags, 51 volunteers conducted a walking litter cleanup on Red Bank's West Side Saturday.
“IT’S A PARTY AT WAWA!”
You wish you could vibe like Brian, who lives on the other side of Hubbard’s Bridge. He caught redbankgreen’s attention in Red B ...
POPE OKS ORATORY
RED BANK: St. Anthony of Padua obtains papal approval to establish Oratory of St. Philip Neri, a community of priests and brothers devoted t ...
RED BANK: NEW MURAL BRIGHTENS CORNER
RED BANK: Lunch Break founder Norma Todd is depicted in a mural painted this week on the front of the newly renovated social service agency.
TULIPS TOGETHER
Spring tulips taking in the sunset outside the Molly Pitcher Inn in Red Bank Monday evening.
RIVER RANGERS RETURN
River Rangers, a summer canoeing program offered by the Navesink Maritime Heritage Association, returns this summer for up to 20 participa ...
DOUBLE DYLAN IN RED BANK
Trucks for a production company filming what one worker said was a Bob Dylan biography have lined Monmouth Street the past two days with cre ...
AFTER THE RAIN
A pear tree branch brought down by a brief overnight storm left a lovely tableau on the sidewalk in front of Red Bank's Riverside Gardens Pa ...
CONE OF UNCERTAINTY
Asked by a redbankgreen reporter why these cones were on top of cars, the owner of the car in the foreground responded: “That’s ...
RAIL RIDER’S VIEW
A commuter's view of Cooper's Bridge and the Navesink River from North Jersey Coast Line train 3320 out of Red Bank Tuesday morning.
PUT ME IN COACH!
Red Bank T-Ball kicked off at East Side park on Saturday morning. The brisk weather proved to be no deterrent to the young players, ranging ...
IT’S A SIGN!
Once proudly declaring its all-but-certain arrival in Spring 2019, the project previously known as Azalea Gardens springs to life again with ...
SPRINGTIME MEMORIES OF CARL
The Easter Bunny getup and St. Patrick’s Day hat that belonged to longtime Red Bank crossing guard and neighborhood smile-creator Carl ...
RED TRUCKS AT RED ROCK
A small dishwasher fire at Red Rock Tap and Grill was put out quickly by firefighters overnight, causing minimal damage. Red Bank Fire Depar ...
CREATIVE COVER UP
The windows of Pearl Street Consignment on Monmouth Street were smashed when a driver crashed their car through them injuring an employee la ...
THEY’RE BACK!
Ospreys returned to the skies over Red Bank this week for the first time since they migrated to warmer climes in late fall. With temperature ...
SPRING IS SPRUNG
RED BANK: Spring 2024 arrives on the Greater Red Bank Green with the vernal equinox at 11:06 p.m. Tuesday.
RED BANK’S FINEST – AND NEWEST
Red Bank Police Officer Eliot Ramos was sworn in as the force’s newest patrolman Thursday, and if you’re doing a double take thinkin ...
EASTER EGG MAYHEM AT THE PARK
An errant whistle spurred an unexpectedly early start to the Spring Egg Hunt on Sunday, which had been scheduled to begin at eggsactly 11am ...
PRESEASON DOCKWORK
RED BANK: With winter winding down, marina gets ready for boating season with some dockwork on our beautiful Navesink River.