Junction Boutique: A Made in Monmouth Success Story in Middletown

Jeanine Riegler, left, and Chris Slater of Junction Boutique

Junction Boutique opened their doors in a small retail space in Belford’s Campbell’s Junction less than two years ago.  The cooperative effort of local artisans selling their homemade jewelry, heirlooms, clothes, candles and bath products and other art started with eight local crafters.

Two months later Chris Slater, the organizer and inspiration of the group, attended a Made in Monmouth trade show at Monmouth University, where she met other Monmouth County based small business owners/artist. They weren’t competitors, they were collaborators.  The number of businesses selling their products at the tiny store quickly grew and by the end of 2016 the 28 participants had outgrown their space.  Slater said that all but a handful of the Junction Boutique artisans were connected through Made in Monmouth and all are New Jersey based.

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Posted: January 19th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County News, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , , , , | No Comments »

Traffic Safety Enhanced in Tinton Falls

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Public safety will be enhanced and traffic will flow easier on Asbury Ave between Garden State Parkway exit 102 and Shafto Road in Tinton Falls thanks to a new traffic signal that was activated yesterday by Freeholders Tom Arnone and Serena DiMaso and employees of the Monmouth County Department of Public Works and Engineering.

“Monmouth County’s first traffic improvement for 2017 is the activation of the traffic signal on Asbury Avenue at Fox Chase and Cannonball Drive,” said Freeholder Arnone. “The signal will improve overall safety for motorists and pedestrians while allowing for better traffic flow and operational efficiency at the intersection. We appreciate the support and patience of local residents and the Tinton Falls officials as we worked to improve public safety in the area.”

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Posted: January 11th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Monmouth County News, Tinton Falls | Tags: , , , , , , , | No Comments »

The Arnone Report: In Monmouth County, We Keep Our Promises

By Freeholder Tom Arnone

Monmouth County Freeholder Tom Arnone

Happy New Year! Last week I was sworn into my third term as Freeholder and I am excited and grateful to continue to serve the residents of Monmouth County. I would like to thank my family for their support and my fellow Freeholders for their continued dedication to our County.

I would like to congratulate my running mates, Freeholder Serena DiMaso, Sheriff Shaun Golden and Surrogate Rosemarie Peters on their well-deserved re-elections. I would also like to congratulate Lillian Burry on her selection as the 2017 Freeholder Director and John Curley on his selection as Freeholder Deputy Director. I look forward to working with you both, and the entire Freeholder Board in the coming year. As always, I would like to wish all of our mayors best of luck as we begin the New Year.

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Posted: January 9th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Monmouth County News, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment »

Freeholders Give Combat Wounded Vets Special Parking Privileges

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The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders, Gary Rich, Lillian Burry, Director Tom Arnone, Deputy Director Serena DiMaso and John Curly, commemorate the installation of a Wounded Warrior parking spot at the Hall of Records.

The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders has followed the lead of Deputy Freeholder Director Serena DiMaso in making the lives of combat wounded war veterans a little easier.

Under a new program announced yesterday, the Freeholders are designating special parking spaces at county facilities for use by Purple Heart Medal recipients.

“We all recognize the tremendous sacrifices our military personnel have made to secure the freedoms we enjoy every day,” said DiMaso. “Regretfully, many of these men and women have returned home with physical and emotional injuries that will follow them the rest of their lives. A designated parking space is a simple way to say thank you.”

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Posted: June 24th, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County News, Veterans | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Freeholders Give Combat Wounded Vets Special Parking Privileges

The Arnone Report: Shop Local, $32.4 million bid for county nursing homes

By Freeholder Thomas A. Arnone

Freeholder Tom Arone

Freeholder Tom Arone

Believe it or not, the holidays are upon us. We’ve been extremely fortunate as the weather has been mild thus far, allowing many of us to continue to enjoy the outdoor activities we love to do throughout our beautiful county – from the beaches and parks, to local tree and menorah lightings, to shopping in our beautiful downtowns and local shopping centers.

I can’t stress enough how important it is to shop local, I encourage all of you to do some this holiday season when buying gifts for your loved ones. I was happy to join our Lieutenant Governor, Kim Guadagno, on Small Business Saturday (the Saturday after Thanksgiving), along with my fellow Freeholder, Serena DiMaso, on a tour of several local businesses in the Red Bank region. We were pleased to see these businesses thriving on that start to the holiday shopping season, as well as the crowds we saw on the bustling sidewalks throughout the downtown.

It’s a proven fact that independent and locally-owned businesses recirculate more revenue locally. The spending done by a local business to operate (including inventory, utilities, equipment and salary to employees) directly impacts the economy within our own community. In addition, the indirect impact happens as employees and business owners spend their income within our local economy, recirculating dollars through their earned money.

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Posted: December 8th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County News, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , , | 3 Comments »

The Arnone Report: Infrastructure Updates

Freeholder Tom Arone

Freeholder Tom Arnone

By Monmouth County Freeholder Thomas A. Arnone

What an incredible fall season we have experienced thus far. The weather has been extremely kind, allowing us to enjoy the amazing landscapes Monmouth County has to offer. I hope that you attended some of the fall events and festivals held in our beautiful county parks and at our beaches, and also those coordinated in your hometowns. The leaves have changed and that means after leaf collection is completed, the county will begin to prep for the upcoming winter season. We are already collecting salt and materials to safeguard our over 1000 miles of roadways when the inclement weather presents itself. The county will be ready as always.

In the meantime, you may have noticed our red trucks mobilized throughout the county as the Public Works and Engineering staff have been busy the past few months, working hard to enhance the infrastructure and efficiency of our roadways, bridge and culvert structures, traffic signals and natural resources.

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Posted: November 17th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Monmouth County News, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment »

The Arnone Report: Hold Up On ADP, All Systems Go On Shark River

By Monmouth County Freeholder Thomas A. Arnone

Freeholder Tom Arone

Freeholder Tom Arone

I know there is much speculation recently on the integrity of the Assessment Demonstration Project and I want everyone to know that we hear you and we will support your inquiries. Earlier this year, I along with my fellow members of the Board of Chosen Freeholders asked Matt Clark, Monmouth County’s Tax Administrator, to hold a meeting for all the municipalities to explain the details of the Assessment Demonstration Project. It was our understanding that attendees left feeling more comfortable with what they heard and understood the benefits of the program. As a result of the close working relationships we have throughout the County, numerous Mayors have contacted the Freeholders with concerns over the uncertainty of this program and the recent negative media coverage surrounding it.  While we all did our best to alleviate those concerns, we also understand the difficult position it puts most of them in. After the events the past few weeks, without making judgements on the program, its administrator or county tax board members, we believe it may be best to put this program on hold until all questions are answered and the Mayors can explain the long term tax benefit to the residents of Monmouth County . It is our hope that the timeline of January 1 will remain intact while these issues are vetted, as it gives the municipalities the ability to budget for the following year’s tax appeals. It is our hope that you continue to stay informed and aware of the tax assessment program through your municipality or at the County level.

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Posted: October 21st, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County News, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on The Arnone Report: Hold Up On ADP, All Systems Go On Shark River

The Arnone Report: Bi-partisan team work yields success with Shark River project

By Monmouth County Freeholder Tom Arnone

Freeholder Tom Arone

Freeholder Tom Arnone

After a very long period time and with many notable road blocks and obstacles, I, along with a great team of my colleagues, including Senator Jennifer Beck (R-11), and Neptune Committeeman Randy Bishop, am so happy to announce that the New Jersey Department of Transportation’s (NJDOT’s) Office of Maritime Resources has awarded the bid to complete the Shark River dredging project. The project’s contract was awarded to Mobile Pumping & Dredging Co., of Chester, PA.

This huge step forward is a result of years of work coordinating with the many agencies that have authority over this project. After being involved in this project for more than fifteen years as Mayor of Neptune City and now as a member of the Board of Chosen Freeholders, I am personally very happy to see this project finally begin.  I have worked with other officials throughout the years whom were also very passionate about this project, including Tom Catley, former Mayor of Neptune Township, as well as other past mayors of the surrounding towns and those in office today. The County has long continued to work cooperatively with these local officials, as well as state and government agencies to move this dredging project forward.

This is a large project, with approximately 106,000 cubic yards of material to be dredged.  With cooperation from the Monmouth County Reclamation Center, which is able to accept and reuse the dredged material, and the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders providing funding, we have made this project a reality. Not one part of the Shark River project was easy or simple, but we found a way to accomplish this.

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Posted: September 28th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Neptune, Neptune Township, Shark River | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Shark River Dredging Contract Awarded

11350584_1030419283658703_4977899953030200993_nThe New Jersey Department of Transportation’s Office of Maritime Resources has awarded the bid to complete the long awaited Shark River and Shark River Spur Dredging Project to the low bidder, Mobile Pumping & Dredging Co., of Chester, PA. MPD’s bid of $7,649,817.50 was $1.8 million lower than the next closest bidder.

The State of New Jersey will contribute over $5 million to the project. Monmouth County will contribute $1.1 million and Neptune Township has committed $450,000.  Belmar, Neptune City and Wall Township are expected to share the remaining costs of the project, according to a statement isssued by Senator Jennifer Beck,  Freeholder Tom Arnone and Neptune Township Committeeman Randy Bishop.  Beck said the project will start this year, “if all the stars align,” and will be completed by the end of 2016.

“After over two decades, there has finally been a bid awarded to dredge Shark River. Notably, The National Marine Fisheries only allows dredging work from July 1st to December 31st, so I’m happy to see this monumental step taken forward, which, if all the stars align, will allow dredging to begin this year. None of this could have been possible without the work of Freeholder Tom Arnone and Committeeman Randy Bishop, working together in a bipartisan fashion with every state, county, and local stakeholder to make this project happen. While the State is investing more than $5 million, the project couldn’t have moved forward without the assistance of Monmouth County, which is accepting the material at its landfill and helping to fund the trucking. In addition, a number of surrounding municipalities have preliminary agreed to share in the cost of the project” said Beck.

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Posted: September 26th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

The Arnone Report: Locals’ summer follows a great season, Hire locally for county work

By Thomas A. Arnone, Monmouth County Freeholder

Freeholder Tom Arone

Freeholder Tom Arone

I can’t believe I am saying this, but summer has slipped away before our eyes. While the calendar does not officially declare autumn until September 23, the unofficial end of the season is Labor Day, when our beaches officially close, lifeguard towers are put away and the school doors open.  As most of us locals know, some of the best beach and park days are still ahead of us, as September and October provide us with the perfect weather to continue to enjoy these gems we are lucky enough to call home.

The 2015 summer tourism season went extremely well, as we were blessed with great weather – modest temperatures and very little rain; in addition both the Memorial Day and Labor Day holidays provided us with an extra two weeks of the season.

I am extremely happy to hear that most beach towns are providing initial reports that badge sales were up over last year, with some reporting the 2015 season as a record year.  Asbury Park has already reported that beach badge sales were up 21% over last year and Belmar has already exceeded their final total number from 2014. Spring Lake officials have reported that beaches have been crowded all season and the shops on 3rd Avenue are doing record business.  Long Branch not only reported record crowds at Ocean Fest, but has continued to experience a packed beach and boardwalk all summer, with all Pier Village shops and restaurants doing very well.

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Posted: September 9th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Monmouth County News, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment »