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PITCHFORKS OUT OVER COMMUNITY GARDEN

With organizer Cindy Burnham holding up a photo, Annie Jones argues for allowing residents to garden a 900-square-foot strip of borough property at Maple Cove. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Community garden proponents assailed the Red Bank council Wednesday night for what they termed its “because-I-said-so” opposition to the creation of a farm plot at a borough-owned Navesink River site.

Revisiting the council’s 2011 rejection of a proposal for a pilot garden behind the borough library parking lot on West Front Street, residents challenged elected officials to articulate their opposition to the plan, and left as frustrated as they were going in.

“What we have a hard time understanding is that we haven’t really heard a good reason why not,” Locust Avenue’s Kathleen Gasenica told the governing body.

“It’s very simple,” replied borough Administrator Stanley Sickels. “The council doesn’t share your vision for a garden there.”

“That doesn’t really answer the question,” Gasenica said.

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FIRE TRUCK PRICE COULD REACH $1 MILLION

The new truck would be garaged at the Navesink Hook & Ladder Company on Mechanic Street, replacing a vehicle whose ladder failed last year. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank taxpayers are facing a cost of up to $1 million to replace an aerial ladder truck, town officials said Wednesday night.

The borough council introduced a $1.1 million bonding ordinance to pay for a new rig, which would replace a 25-year-old truck whose ladder components failed during routine maintenance last year, said Fire Marshal and Administrator Stanley Sickels.

Replacement parts are not available, and the vehicle is no longer compliant with national firefighting equipment standards, he said.

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