RED BANK: BALLARD, ZIPPRICH SAIL TO WINS

Poll workers wrapping up a 14-hour day Tuesday night at Red Bank borough hall, the town’s only polling station for this year’s election. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

Running unopposed, Red Bank Democrats Ed Zipprich and Michael Ballard were on an unimpeded path to re-election to borough council Tuesday amid a pandemic that depressed in-person turnout.

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RED BANK: NONPARTISAN ELECTIONS? NOT YET

red bank scott broschart 083120.jpgRed Bank First leader Scott Broschart at home on Hudson Avenue in August. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank nj

Scott Broschart is on a one-man quest to reform both Red Bank’s government and how people get elected to it.

Neither will happen this year. A referendum Broschart has been pushing for since July is not on the November 3 ballot. But Broschart says he’s perfectly fine with that.

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RED BANK: BALLARD, ZIPPRICH DUCK Q&A

Councilmembers Ed Zipprich, center, and Michael Ballard with Kathy Horgan in January, 2018. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

Neither of the two incumbents seeking re-election as Red Bank council members responded to questions sent to them by redbankgreen last week.

Democrats Ed Zipprich, seeking his fifth three-year term, and Michael Ballard, seeking his second, are running unopposed in the November 3 election.

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FAIR HAVEN: RODRIGUEZ Q&A

Christopher Rodriguez. (Click to enlarge.)

Fair Haven voters will be asked to fill two three-year terms on the borough council in the November 3 election.

On the ballot are three candidates: incumbent Republican Susan Sorensen; incumbent Democrat Christopher Rodriguez; and his running mate, Laline Neff.

Here are Rodriguez’s written responses to questions posed to all three candidates recently by redbankgreen.

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FAIR HAVEN: SORENSEN Q&A

Susan Sorensen. (Click to enlarge.)

Fair Haven voters will be asked to fill two three-year terms on the borough council in the November 3 election.

On the ballot are three candidates: incumbent Republican Susan Sorensen; incumbent Democrat Christopher Rodriguez; and his running mate, Laline Neff.

Here are Sorensen’s written responses to questions posed to all three candidates recently by redbankgreen.

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FAIR HAVEN: NEFF Q&A

Laline Neff. (Click to enlarge.)

Fair Haven voters will be asked to fill two three-year terms on the borough council in the November 3 election.

On the ballot are three candidates: incumbent Republican Susan Sorensen; incumbent Democrat Christopher Rodriguez; and his running mate, Laline Neff.

Here are Neff’s written responses to questions posed to all three candidates recently by redbankgreen.

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LITTLE SILVER: BRENNAN Q&A

Kevin Brennan. (Click to enlarge.)

Little Silver voters will be asked to fill two three-year terms on the borough council in the November 3 election.

On the ballot are four candidates: Democrats Joan Gotti and Stephanie Keenan, and Republicans Kevin Brennan and Michael Holzapfel.

Here are Brennan’s written responses to questions posed to all four candidates recently by redbankgreen.

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LITTLE SILVER: GOTTI Q&A

Joan Gotti. (Click toi enlarge.)

Little Silver voters will be asked to fill two three-year terms on the borough council in the November 3 election.

On the ballot are four candidates: Democrats Joan Gotti and Stephanie Keenan, and Republicans Kevin Brennan and Michael Holzapfel.

Here are Gotti’s written responses to questions posed to all four candidates recently by redbankgreen.

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LITTLE SILVER: HOLZAPFEL Q&A

Michael Holzapfel. (Click to enlarge.)

Little Silver voters will be asked to fill two three-year terms on the borough council in the November 3 election.

On the ballot are four candidates: Democrats Joan Gotti and Stephanie Keenan, and Republicans Kevin Brennan and Michael Holzapfel.

Here are Holzapfel’s written responses to questions posed to all four candidates recently by redbankgreen.

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LITTLE SILVER: KEENAN Q&A

Stephanie Keenan. (Click to enlarge.)

Little Silver voters will be asked to fill two three-year terms on the borough council in the November 3 election.

On the ballot are four candidates: Democrats Joan Gotti and Stephanie Keenan, and Republicans Kevin Brennan and Michael Holzapfel.

Here are Keenan’s written responses to questions posed to all four candidates recently by redbankgreen.

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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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FAIR HAVEN: BUSY COUNCIL AGENDA SLATED

A plan for bike lanes would advance with a parking ban on the north side of River Road between Lake Avenue and Hance Road. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Parking, borough facilities and more will keep Fair Haven’s elected officials busy on their Zoom session Tuesday night.

Also on the agenda: a plan to terminate an “interlocal services” agreement under which Fair Haven disposes of Rumson’s collected yard brush.

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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: COUNCIL AGENDA

Borough hall remains closed for public meetings to limit the spread of COVID-19, so the council will again meet via Zoom. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njMissing, once again, from the agenda for the Red Bank council session Wednesday are dueling versions of a resolution calling for an investigation.

 

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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: 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: 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: 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: COPS SAY SESTITO INTERFERED

Red Bank police dashcam video from the June 3 incident on East Bergen Place. (Red Bank Police Department video. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicRed Bank’s police chief has asked the Monmouth County prosecutor to review an incident involving Councilman Michael Ballard earlier this month.

The incident, which Ballard reported as it occurred outside his home during a council meeting on Zoom, led to his wife, Rose Sestito, briefly in handcuffs for allegedly interfering with a police investigation, though no charges were filed.

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RED BANK: LANE TO GO ONE-WAY, PARTWAY

red bank boat club denholtz southbankBoat Club Court, seen from Union Street, would become a one-way uphill toward West Front Street, but remain a two-way for a short stretch in the other direction. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njA steep and narrow road serving Red Bank’s Marine Park and two Navesink River clubs would become a partial one-way street under an ordinance up for consideration by the borough council this week.

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RED BANK: BALLARD DUBS COPS ‘AGGRESSIVE’

michael ballardRed Bank Councilman Michael Ballard speaking at Pilgrim Baptist Church Thursday night. (Screenshot from Facebook Live. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicRed Bank Councilman Michael Ballard on Thursday teed up borough cops for what he called “overagressive” treatment of his wife during an incident 24 hours earlier.

Speaking at Pilgrim Baptist Church for an online forum on systemic racism, Ballard, an African-American, also appeared to suggest he’d been treated unfairly by unnamed officials at borough hall in his role as finance chairman.

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RED BANK: BALLARD REPORTS WIFE’S ‘ARREST’

red bank council zoom 060320 Red Bank Councilman Michael Ballard, highlighted at upper right during Wednesday’s council meeting via Zoom. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

To the growing list of embarrassing videoconferencing moments in the COVID-19 era – energetic children running through home offices, cats on keyboards, spilled coffee – a Red Bank councilman added another: a report of spousal arrest in progress.

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