RED BANK: CHANGES EYED AT BASIE FIELDS

Under the proposal, most of Henry Street would be eliminated and a new playground built alongside Mohawk Pond. (CME Associates graphic. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

A street that effectively serves as shortcut past the main entrance to Count Basie Fields would be closed to traffic under a concept plan discussed by the Red Bank council Wednesday night.

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FAIR HAVEN: TRAIL FUNDING SOUGHT

The proposed trail would run between the cherry blossom trees lining Fair Haven Road and the eastern edge of Fair Haven Fields. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Fair Haven officials have dusted off a three-year-old proposal that would add a stone-dust trail to the roadside portions of Fair Haven Fields.

It would also cut the cost of removing excess vegetation from McCarter Pond, they said.

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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: 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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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: 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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ON THE GREEN: ONE POLLING PLACE PER TOWN

red bank, nj, voting boothTowns on the Greater Red Bank Green and beyond won’t see much in the way of traditional voting Tuesday.

With the Democratic and Republican primaries occurring during a pandemic, voters have been encouraged by election officials to cast ballots by mail.

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VIRUS UPDATE: MONMOUTH DEATH TOLL AT 700

Monmouth County COVID-19 Fatalities 062320.pngOne hundred of Monmouth County’s fatalities have been reported since June 1. Below, a map shows the number of COVID-19 deaths per 100,000 population by county; the statewide figure is 147. (New Jersey Health Department data. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

COVID death rate per 100,000 by county 062324.pngOne hundred days after its first reported death from COVID-19, Monmouth County has now seen 700 fatalities in the pandemic, Governor Phil Murphy’s administration reported Tuesday.

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VIRUS UPDATE: STATE’S DEATH TOLL AT 12,049

The trajectory of new cases has shown gradual flattening in Monmouth County. (Monmouth County data. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03With new COVID-19 illness totals showing continued abatement, New Jersey passed another grim milestone as the number of deaths in the pandemic topped 12,000, Governor Phil Murphy said Friday.

At the same time, Murphy lauded state residents for working to “beat the crap out of this virus,” with key indicators down 70 percent or more from peak spread as the state nears “stage two” of an economic reopening.

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VIRUS UPDATE: RED BANK CASES LEVELING

Governor Phil Murphy at his daily crisis briefing in Trenton Friday. (Pool photo by Thomas Costello for Gannett. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03For the second day in a row, Red Bank has seen no growth in the number of residents testing positive for COVID-19, Monmouth County officials reported Friday.

At the same time, a longterm care facility that has accounted for most of the borough’s deaths saw one more, the New Jersey Health Department reported.

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VIRUS UPDATE: COUNTY SEES 97 NEW CASES

Since early May, the Monmouth County’s COVID-19 case growth has largely stayed below 100 per day. (Monmouth County data. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Monmouth County’s government reported 97 new confirmed COVID-19 cases among county residents Thursday, as other data also showed the pandemic continuing a monthlong weakening.

 

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VIRUS UPDATE: GUV SIGNALS FURTHER EASING

Murphy said the rolling three-day average of new COVID-19 cases continues to decline. (New Jersey Department of Health graphic. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Governor Phil Murphy signaled loosening of COVID-19 restrictions on sporting events and indoor religious services Wednesday.

Separately, Monmouth County reported the number of county residents with confirmed cases of the illness has now surpassed 8,000.

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VIRUS UPDATE: GRADUATIONS TO RESUME

Outdoor commencement ceremonies, like this Red Bank Charter School graduation in 2016, will be permitted, Murphy said. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATES below]

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Graduation ceremonies can resume starting July 6, Governor Phil Murphy announced in another easing of COVID-19 restrictions Tuesday.

The change follows a three-day weekend in which key measures of the pandemic showed continued improvement over the Memorial Day weekend.

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VIRUS UPDATE: FACILITY CASELOAD UP BY 11

The Hackensack Meridian Health facility in Red Bank, seen here from Bank Street in 2019, has experienced 83 COVID-19 cases among residents and staff members, the state reported. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03COVID-19’s toll on one longterm care facility in Red Bank continued with 11 new infections reported Friday, bringing the total to 83 so far in the pandemic.

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VIRUS UPDATE: RED BANK CASE TOTAL RISES

Fair Haven, Little Silver and Red Bank COVID-19 Cases 052119.pngRed Bank’s confirmed case total continues to rise while Fair Haven’s and Little Silver’s have remained relatively stable. (Monmouth County data. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Red Bank saw a spike in confirmed COVID-19 cases in data reported by Monmouth County officials Thursday.

The borough’s case total in the pandemic now stands at 194, an increase of 13 from Wednesday, the county freeholders reported.

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VIRUS UPDATE: CRISIS MEASURES CUT BY HALF

Governor Phil Murphy discussing hospital-related data Wednesday. (YouTube screengrab. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Key measures of the COVID-19 pandemic have fallen to half their peak levels, but New Jersey residents are still being hospitalized in large numbers, Governor Phil Murphy said Wednesday.

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VIRUS UPDATE: NO CLARITY ON GRADUATIONS

fair haven dock 051820Fair Haven’s municipal dock is open for taking in the vista along the Navesink River, but remains off-limits for fishing and crabbing. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Governor Phil Murphy is still trying to “figure out” how to hold safe graduation ceremonies under the lingering threat of a resurgent COVID-19 pandemic, he said Tuesday.

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VIRUS UPDATE: MURPHY EYES ‘NEW NORMAL’

nj hospitalizations 051820Statewide data shows sustained improvement by key measures in recent weeks, Murphy said. (New Jersey Department of Health data. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Governor Phil Murphy laid out a staged approach to getting the Garden State to a “new normal” way of life following the COVID-19 pandemic.

The plan, announced Monday at his daily briefing on the crisis, came as he also eased restrictions on outdoor activities such as community gardening and batting cages.

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VIRUS UPDATE: MONMOUTH DEATHS TOP 500

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03More than 500 Monmouth County residents have now died in the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Phil Murphy’s administration reported Sunday.

Three-hundred-seventy-two, or 73 percent, of the county’s 508 victims were residents or staff members at longterm care facilities, according to the New Jersey Health Department’s COVID-19 dashboard.

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RED BANK: 16 COVID-19 DEATHS REPORTED

The Hackensack Meridian Health longterm care facility on Chapin Avenue (seen here in 2011) has been associated with 12 resident or staff deaths, the state reported Friday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank’s death toll in the COVID-19 pandemic stands at 16, the borough reported government reported Friday.

All appear to have occurred at the borough’s two congregate living facilities, based on separate data sources.