RED BANK: CONTRACTOR DENIES RACIST POST

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicAn animal-control specialist who has a backup role with Red Bank government came under fire over the weekend for a racist post on Facebook.

But Randolph Tashman, who was appointed to provide supplementary animal control services to the borough in 2019, denied to redbankgreen that he wrote the post.

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RED BANK: TRASH PACT, LEAK REPORT OK’D

DeLisa Demolition won the bidding to haul the borough’s trash and recycling for another five years. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topicMonths later than expected, Red Bank officials agreed this week to enter a new five-year contract for private trash hauling, one that will increase the frequency of recycling pickups.

They also agreed to hire an outside attorney to look into disputed emails about the bid specifications.

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LITTLE SILVER: PANDEMIC BONUSES ON DECK

little silver bob neffLittle Silver Mayor Bob Neff alone in the council chamber for the governing body’s first virtual meeting in April. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Little Silver plans to thank public employees for their extra efforts in the COVID-19 pandemic with $500 bonuses.

The payments, as well as new police salaries, are up for consideration by the borough council at its virtual meeting Monday night.

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RED BANK: TRASH SURVEY SPLITS COUNCIL

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

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topicA trash-and-recycling survey became the latest wedge between two factions of Red Bank’s one-party council Wednesday night.

The dispute included innuendo that Councilman Ed Zipprich could not be trusted to keep information secret from bidders in the pending award of a trash hauling contract.

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RED BANK: RIVERVIEW TOP EXEC RESIGNS

Riverview chief hospital executive Kelli O’Brien at a planning board hearing in February, 2019. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njThe top executive at Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank has resigned and been replaced on an interim basis by a familiar face, redbankgreen has learned.

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RED BANK: DEAL OVER LEAK PROBES POSSIBLE

ballard zipprich 102217Michael Ballard, left, and Ed Zipprich with an unidentified woman at the 2017 Halloween parade. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topicA stalemate over dueling demands for probes stemming from a Red Bank government email leak may be headed toward resolution.

At the urging of Mayor Pasquale Menna, council members informally agreed Wednesday night to seek a legal opinion regarding their options on how to proceed.

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RED BANK: SPLIT OVER LEAK PROBE CONTINUES

A screengrab of the council’s session Wednesday night, with councilmembers Erik Yngstrom at center left and Michael Ballard at center right. (Zoom screengrab. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topicA dispute over leaked emails entered its third month when the Red Bank council met for a workshop session via Zoom Wednesday night.

The issue has pitted two Democrats who are running for re-election against four who aren’t.

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RED BANK: BIKING LANDSCAPER GETS ASSIST

Ricardo Paz with Liz Schuber and restaurateur Danny Murphy outside Danny’s Steakhouse Tuesday, and below, in Fair Haven in July. (redbankgreen photos. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

A Red Bank landscaper who hauls his equipment around in a trailer attached to his bicycle needed a new set of wheels.

And thanks to a fund drive set up by a stranger, Ricardo Paz now has $3,600 to buy one. But because there’s been a run on bikes triggered by the pandemic, Paz hasn’t been able to find a bike sturdy enough to accommodate his trailer, which carries more than 300 pounds of gear.

So last month, Paz –yes – started pushing his gear to his clients’ homes.

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RED BANK: COUNCIL PROMOTES SIX COPS

Errico Vescio, right, who was promoted to captain, with former Captain Mike Clay in 2014. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

Six Red Bank police officers are set to step up in rank next week, following promotions approved by the borough council last week.

By custom, the changes would have been an occasion for family and friends to pack the council chamber for swearing-in ceremonies. But with borough hall shut down to visitors, and the council meeting remotely via the Internet, that event could not be held, said Chief Darren McConnell.

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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: 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: 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: 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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RED BANK: JOBS DEBATE SPLITS COUNCIL

red bank recycling center 051420 Robert Greene, left, and John Caine at the Red Bank recycling center Thursday morning. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicA plan to eliminate two part-time jobs at the recycling center sharply divided Red Bank’s all-Democratic council Wednesday night.

Things got personal. During the governing body’s semimonthly meeting, conducted via Zoom, Councilman Ed Zipprich accused Business Administrator Ziad Shehady of retaliation for an earlier action by the union that represents the affected employees.

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LITTLE SILVER: DALPRA RETIRING FROM RBR

louis del dalpra 2010 Louis ‘Del’ DalPra on the sidelines in 2010. (Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank Regional’s man of many caps, Louis ‘Del’ Dal Pra, is retiring.

This time, unlike his last attempt to leave a decade ago, it’s for real, he said.

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RED BANK: FIRINGS ANGER CHARTER PARENTS

red bank charter 021820Alison Weiler and Nicole Navarrete, center, speak with well-wishers Tuesday night. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank Charter School parents packed a board meeting Tuesday night to protest the firings of two teachers who briefly left a sleeping child behind during a fire drill earlier this month.

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RED BANK: BIAS LAWSUIT SETTLED FOR $175K

memone-kidsMemone Crystian with Red Bank Little Leaguers in 2010. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

A lawsuit claiming racism and gender discrimination against a former director of Red Bank’s parks and rec department will be settled for $175,000.

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RED BANK: LIBRARY PLANS PUBLIC SURVEY

The library, which opened in the onetime home of manufacturer Sigmund Eisner in 1937, is now looking ahead to 2026. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

The Red Bank Public Library plans to solicit public input as it develops a new five-year strategic plan, its board of trustees announced Thursday. Read More »

RED BANK: SCAVONE TO LEAVE RIVERCENTER

scavone menna red bank, nj,Jim Scavone, left, with Mayor Pasquale Menna and Visitors Center director Margaret Mass at the opening of RiverCenter’s offices on Broad Street in October, 2018. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Jim Scavone, who led Red Bank RiverCenter for the past six years, is leaving the downtown promotion organization.

He won’t be going far, though: he’s taking a job at Hackensack Meridian Health at Riverview Medical Center, just on the edge of special improvement district he managed.

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RED BANK: EX-CHEF FOUND NEW WAY TO SERVE

red bank jorge torresWith his son, Aydin, looking on, Jorge Torres embraces his wife, Lauren, after being sworn in as a police sergeant. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njA former chef became the newest sergeant on the Red Bank police force Wednesday night.

The promotion of Jorge Torres was one of several ceremonies that led the borough council’s semimonthly meeting Wednesday night.

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