RED BANK: ‘BROADWALK’ TO GO 24/7

A view down Broad Street last Friday afternoon. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njRed Bank’s ‘Broadwalk’ experiment with in-street dining on Broad Street is going 24/7 for at least the next two months.

The change, from a four-day-a-week schedule, goes into effect Thursday, following a  surprise proposal at Wednesday night’s council meeting.

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RED BANK: FIRST LESSONS OF NEW YEAR

Day one of the new school year at Red Bank Middle School began with several lessons before students even reached their classrooms Monday.

Among them: stand six feet apart while waiting your turn to enter the building. Then, stand on the red dot while a touchless scanner takes your temperature.

With in-person instruction at 50-percent capacity, four days a week, “we feel confident we can provide a safe environment” in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, Superintendent Jared Rumage said at a board of ed meeting last month. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

RED BANK: GOP PAIR QUIT COUNCIL RACE

jonathan maciel penney 102419Jonathan Maciel Penney speaking at the West Side Community Group forum last October. (Photo by Ben Forest. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Both Republican candidates for Red Bank borough council seats in November’s election have formally dropped out of the race.

As a result, incumbent Democrats Michael Ballard and Ed Zipprich appear to have a clear glide path to re-election. Read More »

RED BANK: CLUB OFFERS LEARNING SPACE

red bank boys girls club 031220The Boys &  Girls Club on Drs. James Parker Boulevard in Red Bank. (Photo by  John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[Press release]

With area school districts offering partial- and full-remote schedules this fall, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Monmouth County (BGCM) has opened Remote Learning Centers during the school day at its Asbury Park and Red Bank locations to assist children with their remote education.

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LITTLE SILVER: RBR REOPENING DELAYED

Work on an expansion of the school as seen in July. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

this just in redbankgreenRed Bank Regional High has had to postpone its partial reopening, set for Thursday, over a lack walk-thru body temperature sensors, the school said in an announcement Tuesday evening.

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RED BANK: DESTIGMATIZING ADDICTION

red bank lindsay ashwal 083120Monmouth County Drug Court prosecutor Lindsay Ashwal was among a series of speakers to advocate for destigmatizing opioid addiction when she addressed an audience of about 75 gathered to mark Overdose Awareness Day at Count Basie Fields in Red Bank Monday.

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LITTLE SILVER: RBR’S ‘SOURCE’ FACES CUTS

RED BANK REGIONAL HIGHThe Source provides counseling and other services to hundreds of students and families annually, supporters say. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njThe in-school social services program dubbed The Source at Red Bank Regional High School faces extinction if a plan to eliminate state funding is not reversed, supporters said.

Under cuts to 91 school-based support programs statewide, the Source would lose about $277,000 in annual state funding, they said. That’s the full amount provided by the state, and its removal will have “devastating consequences,” Superintendent Lou Moore wrote in an announcement to the RBR community Friday.

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RED BANK: SCHOOLS ‘READY TO ROLL’

The traffic flow at the middle school will be reversed to enhance social distancing during student drop-off and pick-up, Rumage said. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njWhile some 180 school districts throughout New Jersey are pursuing plans for all-virtual instruction, Red Bank’s is on track to open September 14 under a plan that puts students into classrooms two days a week, Superintendent Jared Rumage said Tuesday.

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RED BANK: DEMS CLASH OVER BUDGET, PROBE

A screengrab of the council’s session Wednesday night. (Zoom screengrab. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topicRifts among Democrats were on almost nonstop display during a three-hour meeting of the Red Bank council Wednesday night.

While Councilman Ed Zipprich pressed for a probe into an email leak he said had smeared his reputation, at least two of his colleagues were more concerned about his intervention in the bidding for a new trash hauling contract.

But first, the all-Democratic body split over proposed budget cuts pushed by Councilman Michael Ballard that others saw as unwise.

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RED BANK: OUTDOOR FASHION SHOW SLATED

A fashion show featuring creations of Emily Natale is to be held on Broad Street in front of Restoration Hardware Sunday evening. (Above photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[UPDATE: Due to rain in forecast, this event has been rescheduled to August 30.]

A Red Bank clothing designer and boutique owner hopes to add to the allure of the popular Broadwalk outdoor dining experiment downtown this weekend.

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RED BANK: CLANCY MULLS COUGHING ON ‘LIBS’

red bank, nj michael clancyMichael Clancy at the Red Bank 5K in 2018. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

[CORRECTION: Michael Clancy is no longer the GOP chairman in Red Bank. He did not seek re-election and was replaced July 27 by Jonathan Maciel Penney. Clancy now serves “as a placeholder on the county committee until I move out of Red Bank,” he told redbankgreen Monday evening. redbankgreen regrets the error.]

By JOHN T. WARD

Three years after he quit the Human Relations committee over a controversial text message, Red Bank Republican Chairman Michael Clancy mused about coughing on President Trump’s adversaries to “harass” them over weekend.

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RED BANK: BUDGET Q&A SLATED AFTER ALL

red bank, nj, ed zipprich, michael ballard, ziad shehadyCouncilman Michael Ballard, center, with Councilman Ed Zipprich, left, and Business Administrator Ziad Shehady in December, 2018. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Almost two months later than promised, Red Bank residents will get a detailed explanation next week of a borough budget that would increase property taxes by 2.8 percent.

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RED BANK: SCHOOL REOPENING PLANS AIRED

red bank middle school 032220Students would receive in-school instruction just two days a week under the plan unveiled Wednesday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njRed Bank school officials have begun nailing down a COVID-19-era reopening plan while “standing on shifting ground,” in the words of a board of education member.

On Wednesday, the district unveiled “the most likely scenario for September” in the form of a plan that calls for a mix of classroom and at-home learning.

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FAIR HAVEN: BIKE LANE DEBATE CONTINUES

fair haven bike laneUnder the plan, “share the road” sharrows would be painted in both directions through the eastern business district. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03A debate over proposed bike lanes and share-the-road markings along the length of River Road in Fair Haven rolled on Monday night.

One week after he broke a tie to advance the plan, Mayor Ben Lucarelli brought in some “sources of authority” on the issue. But opposition, even among some bikers, continued.

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VIRUS UPDATE: MONMOUTH TOPS 10K CASES

Case growth in Red Bank, Fair Haven and Little Silver. (Monmouth County data. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njMonmouth County has now surpassed 10,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases, the freeholder board announced Thursday.

But four months into the pandemic, the county’s caseload and fatalities have slowed dramatically from the worst of the crisis in early April.

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RED BANK: TAX INCREASE AT 2.8 PERCENT

A screengrab from Wednesday’s virtual meeting, with Councilman Michael Ballard at top center and Business Administrator Ziad Shehady at center right. (Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic

Red Bank property owners would pay 2.8 percent more in municipal taxes this year, under a budget advanced by the borough council Wednesday night.

The still-evolving $22.4 million spending plan was the centerpiece of a nearly three-hour online council meeting that left viewers with a lot to unpack.

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RED BANK: FREE COVID-19 TESTS SLATED

Pilgrim Baptist Church is one of six sites in Monmouth County that will offer the tests. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)hot topic

[UPDATE: The COVID-19 testing scheduled for August 7  has been cancelled due to weather.]

Red Bank-area residents will be able to get free, no-appointment COVID-19 tests starting next month under a program co-funded by Monmouth County and a philanthropic organization.

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RED BANK: TAX INCREASE ON AGENDA

michael ballard 051320Councilman Michael Ballard during an online meeting in May. (Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

red bank taxesDelayed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Red Bank’s proposed budget for 2020 would boost the amount to be raised from local property owners by 5.4 percent.

But heading into the final stretch, it’s not clear that the chairman of the finance committee will support the spending plan if it goes to a vote Wednesday night.

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FAIR HAVEN: COUNCIL SPLITS ON BIKE PLAN

Under the plan, both sides of River Road between Lake Avenue and Hance Road would be marked with bike lanes; sharrows would be painted from Hance east to the Rumson border. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

[See CORRECTION below]

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03A plan for bike lanes in Fair Haven hit some potholes last week.

Mayor Ben Lucarelli was forced to break a tie when three council members balked at approving share-the-road markings through the River Road business district.

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RED BANK: PLAZA LIMITS IRK OUTSIDERS

red bank broad street plazaAbutting restaurant setups at the north end of Broad Street have created an atmosphere that’s drawing customers away from other restaurants, some owners say. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[See CORRECTION below]

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njIs a north-south divide developing on Broad Street in Red Bank?

Owners of some businesses located just south of the month-old Broadwalk street plaza say they’re being unfairly cut out of a boom in downtown visitors.

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RED BANK: LION IN WAIT… FOR A VACCINE?

A homeowner on River Road in Red Bank found an opportunity for humor in the increasingly politicized debate over masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Unlike the similarly masked lions guarding the New York Public Library’s main branch, these porch lions appear to be less than six feet apart, and thus in compliance with Governor Phil Murphy’s order, issued Wednesday, that masks be worn when social distancing is “not practicable.” (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

VIRUS UPDATE: ‘MASK UP,’ MURPHY ORDERS

red bank BROAD STREET PHIL TAMMY JOSH MURPHY 061820Governor Phil Murphy donned a mask while dining with his wife, Tammy, and son, Josh, at Char in Red Bank last month. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njNew Jerseyans must wear face coverings outdoors when social distancing is not practicable, Governor Phil Murphy ordered Wednesday.

The mandate marked the latest sign of concern about that Murphy labeled “backsliding” from earlier progress against the COVID-19 pandemic.

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