Christie: Shark River Dredging Delayed By County and Municipalities

Beck: Federal and State Agencies Haven’t Approved Drying Sites

CaptureGovernor Chris Christie told his Town Hall gathering in Belmar yesterday afternoon that the dredging of Shark River is being held up because the municipalities along the river and Monmouth County can not agree on a destination for the dredge spoils to be dumped.

The issue has gathered increased public attention in recent months due to a massive fish kill in the river last May.  310 tons of dead fish were removed from the shoreline of the estuary that feeds into the Atlantic through the inlet between Belmar and Avon-by-the-Sea and extents 11 miles through Neptune and Wall Townships.

In answering a question from a man who identified himself as Bob from Wall, Christie said that he supports the dredging, fought for money from FEMA to pay for the dredging and would impose a solution on the county and municipalities if he had the authority to do so.  He said he had been briefed on the issue three weeks ago.

Maybe the Governor remembered a briefing from a different dredging project when answering Bob’s question.

Both the Monmouth County and Neptune landfills are willing to take the dredge spoils, according to Senator Jennifer Beck.  The river hasn’t been dredged, Beck said in a phone interview last night, because over the last two decades various federal and state agencies have rejected every proposed location for the dredged materials to dry before being moved to their final disposal site.

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Posted: July 31st, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Belmar, Chris Christie, Jennifer Beck, Monmouth County, Shark River | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

The Arnone Report

Progess in Tourism, Share Services, Infrastructure and Economic Development

By Freeholder Tom Arnone

 

Freeholder Director Tom Arone

Freeholder Tom Arone

The Belmar Seafood Festival was a huge success and the County enjoyed having the opportunity to show its presence over the three day weekend. It was estimated that crowds exceeded 150,000 over the three day weekend and as liaison to the Department of Tourism, I was happy to have had the opportunity to speak with so many individuals. On July 4th, Monmouth County Public Information and Tourism will have a booth at Oceanfest on the boardwalk in Long Branch. The booth will be open from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. All are encouraged to attend and join in the celebration that will end at 10 p.m. with an evening of spectacular fireworks.

The most recent meeting of The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders was hosted and held in Asbury Park. Monmouth County’s Department of Public Works and Engineering has been performing vehicle preventative maintenance and repairs for Asbury Park’s fire trucks and emergency vehicles at a cost savings of 40% to the City’s taxpayers. While the Division of Highway has been assisting the local municipalities with sediment removal projects to enhance water quality and reduce flooding.

Additionally, as the Freeholder representative to the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority and Freeholder Liaison to the Department of Public Works and Engineering, I am pleased to report that in the next few weeks, the County expects to receive a federal grant for $10.5 million for the reconstruction of Bridge O-10 on Sunset Avenue over Deal Lake between the City of Asbury Park and the Township of Ocean.

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Posted: June 30th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off

All Aboard! Take the train to the beach

Dinah blow your horn!  NJ Transit offering express trains to Monmouth County beaches

Starting Saturday June 28, New York and Northern Jersey day trippers will have an alternative to the Garden State Parkway for getting to the beach in Monmouth County.

#118335168 / gettyimages.com

Freeholder Tom Arnone announced today that NJ Transit is offering express train service to Monmouth County on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays, starting tomorrow and continuing through September 1.

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Posted: June 27th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Jersey Shore, Monmouth County, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , , , | 21 Comments »

The Arnone Report: Keeping our roads safe and affordable

By Freeholder Tom Arnone

 

Freeholder Director Tom Arone

Freeholder Tom Arone

TRAFFIC SIGNALS are of great significance in that they help to control the flow of traffic as well as helping to ensure the safety of our residents. Recently, there was a traffic signal activation ceremony held on the corner of Locust Avenue and Parker Roadin the Borough of West Long Branch. This project came about as a result of Mayor Tucci requesting that the County study this intersection to allow better traffic flow from Parker Road onto County Route 15 (Locust Avenue) and to improve safety and access for the Frank Antonides Middle School and the West Long Branch Community Center. Based on the County’s study our in-house County engineers designed this state of the art traffic signal which has dedicated turn lanes, improved crosswalks and push-button control pedestrian signals. The traffic signal uses LED lights that costs less to operate and is eco-friendly.

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Posted: June 16th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders | Tags: , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Ocean State Job Lot Opens in Shrewsbury

 

Pictured left to right: OSJL Regional L.P. Manager Bill Thompson, OSJL Director of Store Operations Paul Cox, OSJL Sales Manager Edmund Lynn, OSJL Regional Director Pat Nevue, Mayor Donald Burden, Freeholder Director Lillian G. Burry, OSJL Assistant Manager Hakeem Reynolds, Freeholder Thomas A. Arnone and Freeholder John P. Curley.

Pictured left to right: OSJL Regional L.P. Manager Bill Thompson, OSJL Director of Store Operations Paul Cox, OSJL Sales Manager Edmund Lynn, OSJL Regional Director Pat Nevue, Mayor Donald Burden, Freeholder Director Lillian G. Burry, OSJL Assistant Manager Hakeem Reynolds, Freeholder Thomas A. Arnone and Freeholder John P. Curley.

Ocean State Job Lot, the New England discount retailer, held the Grand Opening of their first New Jersey location on Saturday in Shrewsbury.

Freeholder Director Lillian Burry and Freeholders Tom Arnone and John Curley, as well as Mayor Donald Burden were on hand to welcome the company to Monmouth County.

OSJL sells brand name, first quality products at close out prices.  The company says their merchandise selection not only consists of a variety of manufacturer’s overruns, overstocks and packaging changes, but also includes many areas where our buyers have determined that “holes” exist in the marketplace. We are constantly on the hunt for special deals, which allow us to offer quality brand name merchandise at closeout prices.

While they are known as a closeout company, Ocean State Job Lots prefers to think of themselves as opportunistic merchants.

The Shrewsbury location is at 179 Newman Springs Rd East, which is near the corner of Shrewsbury Ave and across the street from  Butch’s Lube and Wash.

Posted: June 9th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: John Curley, Lillian Burry, Monmouth County, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off

The Arnone Report: Update on Shark River Fish Kill

By Freeholder Tom Arnone

Freeholder Director Tom Arone

Freeholder Tom Arone

On May 12, 2014, a massive fish kill began in the Shark River.  Over the next 10 days, 310 tons of fish would die and wash ashore.  According to the NJ Department of Environmental Protection, the cause of the fish kill was due to a large number of bait fish entering the river to seek refuge from bluefish and bass.  The concentration of fish, coupled with warm and shallow waters, depleted the dissolved oxygen levels, resulting in the die-off.  Despite that this event appeared to be a naturally occurring phenomenon, the die-off was a wake-up call that we should not take the health of the River for granted.  While a number of factors working together may have contributed to the event, there are some people that believe this devastating ecological event could have been avoided with preventative maintenance, or more specifically, the long-overdue dredging of the Shark River.

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Posted: May 30th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments »

The Arnone Report — 2014 Summer Kickoff!

By Monmouth County Freeholder Tom Arnone

Freeholder Director Tom Arone

Freeholder Tom Arone

With summer right around the corner The Monmouth Ocean Development Council is preparing for the 2014 Summer Kickoff to the Jersey Shore. It will be Wednesday, May 21, 2014 on the boardwalk in Asbury outside McLoone’s Supper Club. I will be joining Grace Hanlon, Executive Director of Travel & Tourism State of NJ and Freeholder Joe Vicari of Ocean County as the guest speakers.

Monmouth County 2014 Tourism Season/Arts Partnership are true partners in that they both support businesses large and small in Monmouth County. They play an important role in building and sustaining our economic vibrancy. The Arts and Tourism partnership helps to enhance the quality of life throughout Monmouth County. Monmouth County is home to 2,080 arts related businesses. These businesses employ 5,803 people.

The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders supports the MOCO Arts and Tourism partnership. We encourage our visitors and residents to visit our museums, theaters and our film, architecture and design companies as well as our beaches, boardwalks, historic sites, parks and attractions.

Visitors to Monmouth County spent $2.2 billion in 2013, up 5% over visitor spending in 2012, with Monmouth County seeing about 5 million visitors a year. There are over 32,000 people employed in tourism related jobs in Monmouth County.

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Posted: May 19th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off

The Arnone Report

ZERO PERCENT TAX INCREASE

Freeholder Director Tom Arone

Freeholder Director Tom Arone

By Monmouth County Freeholder Tom Arnone

 

For the fourth straight year in a row The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders has had a 0% tax increase. I am pleased that I have been able to be a part of this budget especially in the hard economic times we are faced with. It has been and always will be a priority of mine as well as the entire Board of Chosen Freeholders to continue this trend of savings to our Monmouth County residents.

Additionally, The Board of Chosen Freeholders is pleased to report we have collected over $1 Million (Actual is $1,022,976.56) in revenues at this early stage in the year from our 911 communications shared service. This amount is based on revenue received from 21 towns. This is a vast increase from prior years where the invoice and revenue collection process typically began in April. This year, the Freeholders in conjunction with the Sheriff through the Office of Shared Services began the process at a much earlier date. The result has been beneficial to all parties as the county has earlier use of funds to help offset our expenses which allows for efficient budgeting for the county as well as for our municipalities. The Board of Chosen Freeholders is extremely pleased with these figures and anticipates the numbers to continue to increase as we receive revenue from the remaining municipalities. The revenue the County receives that is generated through shared services offers relief to the municipalities that translates to lower costs for the services being performed.

April is Autism Awareness Month, and at the last meeting of The Board of Chosen Freeholders a Proclamation was presented to Dr. David Abbott, Superintendent of Schools, for The Shore Center for Students with Autism located in Tinton Falls,. The Proclamation was presented to commemorate Autism Awareness Month in hopes of raising awareness of Autism.

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Posted: April 22nd, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Monmouth County Budget, Property Taxes, Taxes, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Flo’s Happy Clipper joins Facade Improvement Program

Groomer receives $1,727 check

EATONTOWN, NJ – The Grow Monmouth Facade Improvement Program recognized Flo’s Happy Clipper for recent upgrades today.

FlosHappy_Clipper_4-8-14“Flo’s is receiving a check for $1,727 for a new awning,” said Freeholder Thomas A. Arnone. “Every Facade Improvement Program check helps make a needed improvement to a local business. This is the seventh check presented so far.”

Flo’s Happy Clipper is located at 20 Main Street in Eatontown. Owner Robert Ferrara accepted the reimbursement check from Arnone.

The program is part of the successful Grow Monmouth initiative that is utilizing HUD Community Development Block Grant funds to help improve the look of privately held commercial buildings located in HUD eligible areas of Monmouth County. No County funds are being used for the program.

HUD eligible areas include all or part of 26 of the County’s municipalities. Eligible municipalities are: Aberdeen, Atlantic Highlands, Belmar, Bradley Beach, Colts Neck (Naval station only), Deal, Eatontown, Farmingdale, Freehold Borough, Freehold Township, Hazlet, Highlands, Howell, Keansburg, Keyport, Lake Como, Manalapan, Matawan, Neptune City, Neptune Twp., Ocean Twp., Red Bank, Shrewsbury Twp., Tinton Falls (naval station only), Union Beach and West Long Branch.

Asbury Park, Long Branch and Middletown businesses are not eligible for this program because those municipalities receive designated HUD Community Development Block Grants directly.

“No matching funds are required from the business,” Arnone said. “To date, $12,178 has been dispersed out of a total of $85,000 that has been set aside for this program, so businesses should apply now.”

For more information about the Grow Monmouth Façade Improvement Program please contact the Division of Economic Development at 732-431-7470 or visit the Grow Monmouth section of the County website at www.visitmonmouth.com

Posted: April 8th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Press Release, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , , , | Comments Off

The Arnone Report

By Monmouth County Freeholder Tom Arnone

Freeholder Director Tom Arone

Freeholder Tom Arone

The Monmouth County “Made in Monmouth” Expo is rapidly approaching. It is an annual event showcasing products exclusively produced in Monmouth County. “Made in Monmouth” is a free event for both vendors and visitors; its purpose is to encourage people to shop local. To date 142 vendors are confirmed registered. The products sold at this event, made right here in the county are creative and nothing less than amazing. I am also happy to report that we are partnering with the Food Bank of Monmouth and Ocean counties this year to conduct a food drive at the event. We are asking our vendors as well as people that are attending to bring a donation of canned or dried food for the Food Bank. The third annual “Made in Monmouth” is Saturday, April 12, 2014 at the MAC Building at Monmouth University in West Long Branch. For more information, please call 732-431-7470.

On March 27, 2014, Verizon recognized the student team from Biotechnology High School, Freehold, one of Monmouth County’s premier high schools, for their achievement of Best in State, Best in Region and National Best Educational Application Concept status in the 2013 Verizon Application Challenge. It was an honor for me to be present at the recent ceremony as the student team received this recognition. The Board of Chosen Freeholders is extremely proud of the students at Biotechnology H.S. on this accomplishment and commends their efforts in achieving such high accolades.MadeInMonmouth

On behalf of The Board of Chosen Freeholders and as liaison to the Department of Shared Services, I recently hosted and participated in a meeting at the Monmouth County Connection in Neptune to assist Middletown in their exploration of creating an animal shelter to service Monmouth County municipalities. Many municipalities are facing serious capacity and public health issues in this area as well as heavy annual increases in service costs which are greatly reducing their ability to meet other service needs in the community. Middletown contacted the county to assist in bringing together as many towns as possible to discuss this issue, engage the towns for their ideas and input and strategize on how to address these common issues together. The meeting went extremely well and the towns that attended were very appreciative of both Middletown’s and the County’s efforts. There was very high interest in moving forward and approximately 30 towns expressed interest in our initial outreach.

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Posted: March 28th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Tom Arnone | Tags: , , , , , , , | Comments Off