RED BANK: LIBRARY MARKS PAST, EYES FUTURE

The heirs of manufacturer Sigmund Eisner donated his West Front Street mansion to the library, which opened there on April 15, 1937. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Continuing its comeback from a period of drastic retrenchment, the Red Bank Public Library plans a celebration of the borough’s past Saturday with the reopening of the Local History Room, which was put off-limits due to staff cuts three years ago.

The second-floor room’s return to part-time action is one piece of a daylong schedule of events to mark the institution’s 80th year in its home overlooking our beautiful Navesink River.

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RED BANK: COUNTY LIBRARY COSTS WEIGHED

rbpl-garden-siteTrustees of the library say local taxpayers would still have to foot the cost of the borough facility on West Front Street, above, with access to fewer resources from Monmouth County. (Photo above by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03The question pops up periodically, and did so several times last year in a user survey: would Red Bankers be better off if their library was part of the Monmouth County library system?

According to the Red Bank Public Library’s trustees, the answer is “no,” and it’s not a close call.

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RED BANK: EISNERS PLEDGE $50K TO LIBRARY

rbpl 1 032714Through his foundation, former Disney CEO Michael Eisner below, has pledged $50,000 to the library that bears his family’s name. (Photo above by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

(Press release from the Red Bank Public Library)

michael eisnerThe Eisner Memorial Red Bank Public Library started 2016 with a nice surprise: a letter notifying Director Elizabeth McDermott of a five-year, $50,000 donation to the Foundation for the Red Bank Public Library from the Eisner Foundation.

This is the largest donation yet received by the library foundation, with $10,000 being donated annually for five years.
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RED BANK: LIBRARY WANTS YOUR TWO CENTS

rbpl 1 102113The Red Bank Public Library is conducting a survey to help shape a strategic plan and the future of the institution. Input is welcome from frequent users, occasional visitors and even though who’ve never stepped inside the West Front Street facility. The survey, available in English and Spanish, is available here.

RED BANK: SWITCH ADDS COLLECTION DAYS

delisa 090315HOT-TOPIC_03With the switch to private cartage last week, all homes in Red Bank have now had at least one pickup by DeLisa Demolition of Tinton Falls, which won a three-year, $1.49 million contract for collection of trash, recyclables and household bulk waste last month.

The change, borough officials said in advance, would have been all but unnoticed by residents. But there’s a perk or two, including — as some perplexed residents may have noticed on Labor Day holiday pickups.

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RED BANK: TRASH PICKUP TO GO PRIVATE

rb trash 092414 1Two of the borough’s four garbage trucks will be sold, and the other two kept for leaf and snow removal, officials said. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Red Bank is getting out of the garbage business.

By a 4-0 vote at a special, single-issue meeting Monday night, the borough council approved a three-year, $1.49 million contract for collection of trash, recyclables and household bulk waste with a private hauler, Delisa Demolition of Tinton Falls.

But the change, effective September 1, will be all but unnoticeable to residents and small-business owners, town officials said. And it should generate “significant” savings, they contend.

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RED BANK: PRIVATE TRASH PICKUP NEARS

rb trash 092414 2No borough employees will lose jobs or benefits in the switch, Mayor Pasquale Menna said. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03The end of public-sector trash collection in Red Bank could come as soon as September 1, under the terms of a contract that the borough council body discussed in private Wednesday night.

Still not quite at the end of a process it began 18 months ago, the council scheduled a special meeting for next Monday night solely to vote on the deal.

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RED BANK: LIBRARY HOSTS FUNDRAISER

111114 rblibrary16111114 rblibrary23Seven months after a mass resignation of board members in a budget dispute, the Red Bank Public Library hosted a wine-tasting fundraiser to signal it is back on track to eventual full restoration of hours of operation and services Tuesday night.

The event, hosted by the Foundation for the Red Bank Public Library, featured culinary offerings from a number of borough eateries and treateries, including Faustini Wines, the Melting Pot, Readie’s Café and Sugarush cupcakes.  (Photos by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

WHERE HAVE I SEEN THIS?

Where_061214Do you know Where this week’s photo was shot? Take a guess! Please send your answer to wherehaveiseenthis@redbankgreen.com.

Last week’s Where? It showed… well, it may have been hard to make out at first because of the odd angle. But it was a view down a stairwell through a metal railing to a multicolored floor of bright hues.

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RED BANK: BURNHAM REOPENS WATER VALVE

horgan burnham 022614Councilwoman Cindy Burnham, right, listens as Councilwoman Kathy Horgan reads an Environmental Commission resolution that denounced any move to privatize Red Bank’s water utility. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

New Red Bank Councilwoman Cindy Burnham‘s recent suggestion that the town sell its water utility got a thorough hosing Wednesday night.

Two weeks after discussion of $2.2 million capital improvement bond prompted Burnham to call for privatization of the water system, Burnham sat stone silent through a critique of the idea Wednesday night – and then voted in favor of the bond.

By Thursday morning, though, the council’s lone Republican was talking again, calling opposition to her suggestion an “attack” by the Democratic majority.

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PRIVATE OPERATORS EYE RED BANK COURTS

rb tennis ct 2 091113The clay courts overlooking the Navesink River at Marine Park, closed since Hurricane Sandy, could go under private management. The adjacent lavatories, meantime, are to be demolished and replaced with new facilities on higher ground. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

A year after Hurricane Sandy sent the Navesink River surging, Red Bank’s cherished red-clay tennis courts at Marine Park remain closed and weed-strewn, to the heartbreak of players.

“They’re a treasure to Red Bank,” said Dan Ciaglia, who says he’s played at the courts “three, four, five times a week in the summer for the past 30 years.”

Since Sandy, Ciaglia said, he’s played various hard courts, but considers the clay courts special not only for the surface and location, but for “the little community of people” who play there.

Now, as borough officials plan to relocate adjacent lavatories to higher ground in the park, they’re also sorting through informal proposals that could put the courts under private management.

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O’HERN, AZZOLINA GET NAME HONORS

ohern-stationThe Red Bank train station and the Route 36 Highlands-Sea Bright bridge, below, have new names. (Click to enlarge)

azzolina-bridge1

Two prominent pieces of public infrastructure – one, some 140 years old, the other brand-new – have officially been renamed for Red Bank-area leaders.

Governor Chris Christie has signed bills naming the century-old Red Bank rail station for the late borough mayor and state Supreme Court Justice Daniel O’Hern and dubbing a new bridge across the Shrewsbury River for the late  Joe Azzolina, the longtime state Assemblyman from Middletown.

State Senator Jennifer Beck, who pushed for both, announced the changes Monday.

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