RED BANK: BRIDGE RENAMED FOR KYRILLOS

State Senator Joe Kyrillos at the opening of the new bridge in May, 2015. Freehold John Curley is at left. Below, a Google Satellite view of the bridge. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

For who knows how long, the West Front Front Street bridge connecting Red Bank and Middletown has been colloquially known as “Hubbard’s Bridge.” To Monmouth County, which owns the span and replaced it three years ago, it’s “S-17.”

As of Thursday, though, the 488-foot connector over the upper Navesink River has a new name: the “Senator Joseph M. Kyrillos Bridge.”

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RED BANK: BERGEN PLACE MAKEOVER NEARS

The intersection of Broad Street and East Bergen Place was racked with potholes Tuesday morning, shortly before a borough crew arrived to do some patching. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03One of Red Bank’s nastiest pothole clusters got a temporary fix Tuesday.

A more permanent one is in the works, borough officials said.

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RUMSON: JUDGE AVOIDS PRISON

A former Rumson municipal court judge who admitted illegally diverting more than $500,000 in court fines will avoid prison, and could have his crime expunged from official records, the Asbury Park Press reported Friday.

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RED BANK: JUDGE NIXES POWER LINE PLAN

Homeowners living along the line and other objectors packed a public hearing on the JCP&L proposal held at Brookdale Community College last March. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Electrical utility JCP&L has failed to prove it needs a to build a controversial 10-mile long, high-voltage electricity transmission line that would end in Red Bank, a judge has ruled.

The decision, handed down Thursday, represents at least an interim victory for a grassroots effort led by homeowners to thwart the proposed $111 million project.

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RUMSON: JUDGE ADMITS $500K SCHEME

HOT-TOPIC_03Rumson’s former municipal court judge has pleaded guilty to a five-year scheme in which he diverted to local coffers more than $500,000 that should have gone to Monmouth County, according to an announcement Friday by the county prosecutor.

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RUMSON: SUICIDE PROMPTS ARMED RESPONSE

Authorities cordoned off Ridge Road from Bellevue Avenue, above, to Buena Vista Avenue. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

A suicide with a firearm prompted a heavy turnout of police and armored vehicles in Rumson Sunday morning, a spokesman for the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s office said.

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RED BANK: EXTRA CASH FUNDS TEACHER HIRES

An increase in state aid enabled the district to add two teachers Tuesday night, with more coming, says the superintendent. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

The Red Bank Board of Education approved the hiring Tuesday of two teachers whose jobs were made possible by an increase of $512,682 in additional state aid.

Up to six more teachers and instructional aides are expected to be added to the district’s payroll for the coming school year under what Superintendent Jared Rumage called a “gigantic” cash infusion from Trenton into the still-underfunded district.

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RED BANK: NEW STINK OVER BELLHAVEN COSTS

A 2012 image outlines the extent of wetlands at Bellhaven Natural Area at the western terminus of Locust Avenue. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Two years after abandoning a controversial “sprayground” proposed for the Bellhaven Natural Area, the Red Bank borough council is moving ahead with plans for a playground at the site.

At its semimonthly meeting Wednesday night, the council approved nearly $20,000 in additional engineering costs for the site, a move that prompted fresh objections.

“This is deja vu all over again,” said Bill Meyer, owner of a downtown commercial building. The borough has already spent $73,000  engineering fees on the site, and “that money was burned and wasted,” he said. Read More »

RUMSON: OCEANIC MAKEOVER BEGINS ANEW

Todd Thompson, seated at center, discussing bridge options with other attendees at the Rumson session. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

What should be done about the crumbling Oceanic Bridge between Rumson and Middletown?

Area residents were offered dozens of options Tuesday as Monmouth County officials hit the reset button on an earlier process derailed by a change in federal regulations.

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OCEANIC BRIDGE: CONCEPT PLANS ON DISPLAY

The Oceanic Bridge between Rumson and Middletown is in “critical” condition, according to the Monmouth County Engineer’s office, and officials plan to unveil “conceptual alternatives” for its replacement or repair at meetings slated in each town today.

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RED BANK: SCHOOL TAX TO RISE 3.26 PERCENT

Facilities are growing tighter as enrollment rises, said Superintendent Jared Rumage. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

The Red Bank Board of Education approved a $22 million budget that would raise the local school portion of property tax bills by 3.26 percent Tuesday night.

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LINCROFT: RESIDENTS ZAP JCP&L LINE PLAN

Many in the crowd came with signs and wore stickers indicating the distance of their homes from the proposed power line. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Thwarted from speaking two months ago, hundreds of opponents of a proposed high-voltage electricity transmission line from Aberdeen to Red Bank came electrified with anger Tuesday night.

The occasion was a public comment session at Brookdale Community College on the Jersey Central Power & Light Company proposal, which calls for support poles as tall as 210 feet running for 10 miles along the North Jersey Coast Line railroad, ending at a substation in Red Bank.

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LITTLE SILVER: BOROUGH EYES AVAILABLE LOT

The property, marked with a star, would provide direct public access to Challenger Field. (Image by Google Maps. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Little Silver officials hope to solve a longstanding problem of access to ballfields with the purchase of a vacant property, under action initiated by the borough council.

But it’s far from a done deal, hinging on financial help from Monmouth County and the property still being available when the town’s ready to make an offer.

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RUMSON-SEA BRIGHT: BRIDGE CLOSING


HOT-TOPIC_03Monmouth County Bridge S-32, better known as a the Rumson-Sea Bright Bridge, will be closed overnight from 8 p.m. Thursday to 6 a.m. Friday for regular
maintenance to the center bascule, Monmouth County officials announced Wednesday. 

Detours will be posted, as the span will be closed to vehicular and pedestrian traffic. (Photo by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)

 

 

RED BANK: DRUG OVERDOSE CASES SOARING

A “heat map” showing the concentration of drug-overdose deaths in Monmouth County last year. (Map by Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

One-hundred-sixty-five people died of drug overdoses in Monmouth County last year, almost double the number just four years ago, the prosecutor’s office reported Tuesday.

Despite the widespread, often successful use of a fast-acting opiate antidote, the number of overdose victims continued to soar last year, rising 35 percent, the agency reported.

Red Bank police Chief Darren McConnell said the number of overdose cases in the borough over the last two years is “ridiculously higher” than he’d seen in the first three decades in law enforcement.

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ON THE GREEN: BECK, KYRILLOS OPPOSE LINE

rb njt 041014A view north along the North Jersey Coast Line from the Red Bank train station. The proposed JCP&L power line would be strong alongside the railroad right-of-way on poles as tall as 140 feet. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03A controversial 10-mile long, high-voltage electricity transmission line that would end in Red Bank is no more welcome today than it was when it was shelved more than two decades ago, two local legislators said Thursday.

State Senators Jen Beck, of Red Bank, and Joe Kyrillos, of Middletown, jointly introduced a trio of resolutions in Trenton aimed at blocking electricity provider JCP&L from building the line.

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MIDDLETOWN: MAN CHARGED WITH LURING

bryan-sanderson-090816

By JOHN T. WARD

A 24-year-old Middletown man found with a 14-year-old girl on a motor vehicle stop last year has been arrested on luring and child pornography charges, the Monmouth County prosecutor announced Thursday.

Bryan W. Sanderson, right, was arrested August 18 and charged with luring the girl last September using the popular online social media meeting site“Kik,” Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni said in a prepared statement.

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