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RED BANK: THIRD TIME AS CHIEF FOR HARTMAN

Wayne Hartman at the start of his last stint as fire chief in 2019. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Just three years after he concluded his last term, Wayne Hartman is slated to return as chief of the Red Bank’s fire department next week.

This will be his third time heading the all-volunteer department.

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RED BANK: CAR FIRE DOUSED NEAR SCHOOL

Red Bank volunteer firefighters quickly extinguished a car fire that occurred near St. James School shortly before the start of classes Wednesday morning.

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RED BANK: PORTMAN TAKES MAYOR’S SEAT

Mayor Billy Portman opens the reorganization meeting as Attorney Dan Antonelli looks on, above; new fire chiefs were sworn in, below.  (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank entered into a period of transition Wednesday night, as a new mayor took the helm of a government that’s slated to vanish in seven months.

Billy Portman, a political neophyte who helped dismantle the local Democratic machine last year, was sworn into the town’s highest elected position pledging he’ll “keep the ship running smoothly” in the interim.

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RED BANK: REFLECTIONS ON SEPTEMBER 11

Former Red Bank fire chief Wayne Hartman tolled a bell in memory of 343 New York City fireighters who who died at the World Trade Center. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

On a swath of Riverside Gardens Park lawn emblazoned with a temporary memorial, Red Bank residents and others gathered Saturday morning to remember the 2,996 lives taken on American soil on September 11, 2001.

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RED BANK: MENNA OFFERS PROTOCOL FIX

tammy murphy pasquale menna 010120New Jersey First Lady Tammy Murphy with Mayor Pasquale Menna prior to the start of Wednesday’s reorganization meeting. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank Mayor Pasquale Menna proposed a workaround Wednesday to a year-old protocol covering comments and questions at council meetings: he says he’ll show up an hour early to field them.

At the borough government’s annual New Year’s Day reorganization meeting, attendees also heard Menna heap thanks on Governor Phil Murphy, whose wife, Tammy Murphy, attended the ceremonial session.

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RED BANK: FIREFIGHTERS KEEP FREE Y ACCESS

red bank ymcaThe Red Bank nonprofit says no families of kids now in a free membership program will be turned away. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njRed Bank’s volunteer firefighters will get to keep their free memberships to the local YMCA, the organization announced Wednesday.

Police will still have to pay, though now at a discount, a spokeswoman for the nonprofit said. But there’s no change to the plan unveiled last week to end across-the-board free memberships for borough schoolchildren.

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RED BANK: KIDS, RESPONDERS LOSE FREE YMCA

red bank ymcaThe Red Bank YMCA says affected families can apply for subsidies to replace the free memberships. Below, the letter sent to parents of children in the Healthy Kids program. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank YMCA letter 061919Red Bank’s schoolchildren and emergency first-responders will lose their free access to the borough YMCA in September.

The Maple Avenue nonprofit’s executive director, Katie McAdoo, tells redbankgreen the change was driven by its need to be “accountable” to funders.

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RED BANK: 12 FAMILIES DISPLACED BY BLAZE

red bank oakland square fire The fire began in mulch ignited by a discarded cigarette or match at the 12-unit Oakland Square apartments, officials said. The top of a smoking pole is visible at right. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

this just in redbankgreenA discarded cigarette or match appears to have ignited a blaze that sent two people to the hospital and left 12 families without a home Sunday morning, officials said.

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RED BANK: DEMS GLIDE INTO NEW YEAR

red bank, nj, pasquale menna, wayne hartman, scott calabrese, bob holidayMayor Pasquale Menna prepares to swear in new fire Chief Wayne Hartman, center, and deputies Scott Calabrese and Bobby Holiday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank’s government turned the calendar page to 2019 with a friction-free reorganization meeting Tuesday that kicked off the fourth term of Mayor Pasquale Menna and gave Democrats unfettered control of borough hall.

Here are some highlights:

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RED BANK: DEMS TAP ACTING ADMINISTRATOR

Michael Ballard heads for his seat on the dais after his swearing-in as councilman Monday. Below, Kenneth DeRoberts, a consultant, was named interim administrator through March 31. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Back in control of the Red Bank council, Democrats flexed their muscle Monday on the issue of who will run the day-to-day operations of municipal government now that Stanley Sickels has left the building.

Answer: still to be determined. For the next three months, however, the job of borough administrator will be held by a consultant on local government efficiency.

 

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RED BANK: JENSEN ELECTED FIRE CHIEF

Chief-elect Stu Jensen arrives at the Navesink Hook & Ladder house on Mechanic Street following his election Tuesday night. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Amid flashing red lights and sounding horns, Red Bank’s volunteer firefighters marked the election of Stu Jensen as 2018 borough fire chief with a celebration Tuesday night.

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RED BANK: DEMOCRATS REASSERT CONTROL

yvonne-erik-yngstrom-010116Erik Yngstrom embraces his mother, Yvonne Yngstrom, after giving his oath as councilman. Below, Kathy Horgan began her fourth term on the council and was elected its president. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

kathy-horgan-010117Red Bank’s first Republican majority in a generation ended after just a year Sunday, when Democrats regained control of the borough council.

With the addition of political newcomer Erik Yngstrom to the governing body, the Democrats now share 3-3 parity with the GOP on the council. But with the support of three-term Mayor Pasquale Menna as the tiebreaker to any potential deadlock, the Democrats wasted no time in doling out key jobs to partisans.

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RED BANK: DeFAZIO TO RETURN AS FIRE CHIEF

lauterwasser defazio 050716donegoodlogoRetired Red Bank police captain Pete DeFazio, at right above, is slated to serve as chief of the borough’s volunteer fire department for 2017, following his election by members Tuesday night.

His swearing-in, scheduled for January 1, will begin DeFazio’s third tour as chief, a post he held in 1987 and 1993. A member of the Relief Engine Company on Drummond Place, DeFazio retired from the police department in 2010, after 35 years on the force. He’ll succeed Chris Soden, of the Union Hose Company, in a tradition that rotates the top job among the borough’s six fire companies.

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MIDDLETOWN POLICE BLOTTER

Recent crime and arrest reports, unedited, as provided by the Middletown Township Police Department.

​​​AUTHORITIES_MTOWN2Stephanie Cotto, age 26, from Garfield Avenue in Belford, NJ, arrested on October 15, 2015 by Patrolman Ryan Maguire on Contempt of Court warrants issued by the Middletown and Tinton Falls Municipal Court. He was held on $1,750.00 bail.

John Coughlin, age 51, from Cheryl Drive in Iselin, NJ, arrested on October 14, 2015 by Patrolman Antonio Ciccone on a Contempt of Court warrant issued by the Middletown Municipal Court. He was held on $500.00 bail.

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MIDDLETOWN POLICE BLOTTER

Recent crime and arrest reports, unedited, as provided by the Middletown Township Police Department.

AUTHORITIES_MTOWN2Andrew Rusignuolo, age 22, from Carpenter Street in Red Bank, NJ, arrested on October 24, 2013 by Patrolman Kent Thornton on a Contempt of Court warrant issued by the Middletown Court. He was released after posting $250.00 bail.

Reginald Taylor, age 22, from Summerfield Avenue in Asbury Park, NJ, arrested on October 23, 2013 by Patrolman Anthony Dellatacoma for Violation of a Court Order and Harassment. He was held on $50,000.00 bail set by Judge Joseph Quinn of the Monmouth County Superior Court.

James Fleming, age 20, from Reta Lane in Middletown, NJ, arrested on October 23, 2013 by Patrolman Adam Colfer for Being under the Influence of a Controlled Dangerous Substance, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Possession of a Hypodermic Syringe, Theft, Burglary, Obtaining Prescription Drugs by Fraud, Possession of Heroin, Unlawful Possession of Dilaudid and Unlawful Possession of Clonazepam. He was held on $27,500.00 bail set by Judge Richard Thompson.

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