John O. Bennett III, the former Acting Governor, former Monmouth GOP Chairman and former Borough Administrator of Oceanport is the new Administrator of the Borough of Lavallette in Ocean County.
Bennett’s job in Oceanport ended on April 30th when he was replaced by Ray Poerio, an Edison resident who had been the Recreation Director of Scotch Plains, Union County.
Bennett announced his retirement from the Oceanport job last fall after he, and his part time work as an attorney, became an issue in the local election. After Mayor Michael Mahon was defeated by current Mayor Jay Coffey’s write-in campaign, Bennett reapplied for the Oceanport job.
Oceanport Administrator John Bennett is applying to keep the job that he announced his retirement from in October.
Bennett’s retirement is effective December 31. When I met him at Oceanport’s temporary Borough Hall today, there was no signs of him slowing down. He was working with a borough employee on the town’s debt amortization schedule when I arrived. Over lunch he was excited about the future of Oceanport and proud of what he’s accomplished in his two years as administrator. He was also well aware the that town needs to heal the divisions…that he is in the center of….that resulted in Mayor Michael Mahon going from being unopposed for reelection last month to being defeated by write-in candidate Jay Coffey. “I promised I would give 110% until my last day,” for former Senate President and Acting Governor said.
Bennett is hopeful that his last day will come after December 31. “I love being an administrator,” he said, “I wish I had done this earlier in my career. I submitted my application for the job.”
Presumed Oceanport Mayor-elect Jay Coffey, center,addresses supporters as Culllin Wible , left, and Councilman Joe Irace,right look on. photo via facebook
In the Oceanport mayoral race, “Write-In” has defeated incumbent Mayor Michael Mahon by a margin of 988 to 721.
Monmouth County Clerk told MoreMonmouthMusings this morning that each of the Write-In votes will be reviewed today in order to determine the winner of the race, subject to the counting of provisional ballots and certification of the election.
A bi-partisan coalition of Oceanport leaders supported Attorney Jay Coffey, a registered Democrat, in his campaign unseat the Republican mayor who was unopposed on the ballot. Coffey is widely expected to be the winner of the campaign. He declared victory last evening.
Oceanport’s all Republican municipal government has been in turmoil for the better part of the year as Mahon stopped communicating with members of the Council, particularly regarding redevelopment issues at Fort Monmouth, and a growing distrust of Borough Administrator John Bennett festered throughout the governing body and members of the public.
OCEANPORT — An exchange between two borough officials at a special council meeting last week nearly turned violent, with the borough’s mayor having to step in to keep the two apart. During the public comment portion of the Aug. 6 meeting, resident and Board of Education member Jay Coffey was addressing the council about personnel and… Read the rest of this entry »
Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon said he supports the Borough of Oceanport’s efforts to prevent a crematorium from being built in a residential neighborhood.
“I am concerned with the process and the minimal amount of communication,” said O’Scanlon. “The fact that the only public notification of this pending permit was published in the Home News Tribune, which is not even distributed in the Borough, is hardly adequate notice.”
“I have seconded the municipal request for a public hearing so that all the facets of this permit request can be discussed and the residents have an opportunity to voice their concerns,” O’Scanlon explained. “Projects such as this should never be implemented behind closed doors. I plan on remaining involved in this issue to see that all concerns are addressed.”
Oceanport Borough Administrator John Bennett was surprised last week when he was informed by the Department of Environmental Protection that Woodbine Cemetery had applied for an Air Pollution Control permit. As Acting Governor in 2002, Bennett signed legislation that required crematoriums be approved by the governing bodies of the municipalities where they were proposed. That legislation was repealed in 2011. The current law gives the New Jersey Cemetery Board the authority to approve crematorium construction permits. The majority of the Cemetery Board is comprised of owners or managers of cemeteries.
Oceanport officials are burning over the prospects of the Woodbine Cemetery installing a crematorium with a smoke stack in a residential neighborhood of the borough.
In a statement released by Councilman Joe Irace yesterday and posted on the Oceanport website , the borough complains that the only public notification that Woodbine Cemetery was seeking to build a crematorium was in a public notice published in the Home News, an Asbury Park Press affiliated publication that is distributed in Middlesex and Somerset counties.
The borough became aware of the situation via a letter from the Department of Environmental Protection informing them that Woodbine was seeking an Air Pollution Control Permit.
Monmouth County Shaun Golden has been elected Chairman of the Monmouth County Republican Committee.
Golden defeated incumbent Chairman John Bennett 335 votes to 282.
UPDATED: June 11, 2014
There was brief confusion when County Clerk Claire French presented the results to Bennett. Bennett misunderstood the results and thought he had won. He and his daughters started to celebrate but were quickly corrected. Bennett then announced that Golden was the new County Republican Chairman and left the room with his family.
Golden thanked the convention and promised to conduct his new office with dignity and honor.
Unaware that MMM already had published the vote count, Golden declined to release the results to The Asbury Park Press, saying he would release them today.
Golden did not announce his choice of Vice Chair. Rather, he will announce a leadership council and a diversity team to reach out to ethnic groups that traditionally do not vote Republican before the week is out. Members of the leadership team will serve as “co-vice chairs” with one of them holding the title as a formality.
Golden is retaining Executive Director Tom Symanski’s employment with the Party. “Tom has done a good job and we worked well together on the campaign last year,” Golden said this morning, ” we’ll give him more direction and support going forward.”
Voting has commenced at the Monmouth County Republican Convention.
Credentials were issued to 626 County Committee members who are choosing between incumbent Chairman John Bennett and Sheriff Shaun Golden. Registration and credentialing remains open .
The theme of the evening has been unity, and the nominating speakers, Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon for Bennett and Freeholder Tom Arnone for Golden, stressed that all Republicans must come together when the voting is complete.
Both candidates repeated the themes of their campaign’s during their speeches to the convention, with Golden emphasizing his energy and growing the party with enhanced communication and outreach to diverse demographics, and Bennett emphasizing the successes of his two years in office and his 40 year career in politics.
Bennett did not raise the issue of a conflict of interest for a Sheriff being Chairman, as he had through most of the campaign.
The Monmouth County Republican Committee will convene to elect a Chairman this evening at iPlay America in Freehold, at 7PM.
Only credentialed County Committee members will be permitted to vote. County Committee members are urged to arrive at 6PM in order to check in and receive their credentials. Only Republicans on the County Committee list generated by the Superintendent of Elections will be credentialed. Municipal Chairmen and Chairwomen are urged to verify that their accurate and complete list of committee members is submitted to Superintendent Bertha Sumick this morning.
In lieu of a debate, the candidates for Chairman of the Monmouth County Republican Committee have agreed to a round of Cosmic Battle Laser Tag at 5:30PM. Arrive early! You don’t want to miss the Cosmic Battle!
Just kidding. The amusements are on the opposite side of the building from the Event Center where the convention will be held.
iPlay American is at 110 Schanck Rd, on the southbound side of Route 9. When you enter the parking lot look for signs for the Event Center, which is on the far side, the north side, of the building.
There are five restaurants inside the iPlay America complex, one of them just next to the room where the convention will be held. Arrive early and relax with other Republicans from throughout the county.
Howell GOP Municipal Chairman Juan Malave and Monmouth GOP State Committeeman John Costigan celebrate Malave’s election.
Monmouth County Republican State Committeeman John Costigan, the GOP Municipal Chairman of Howell Township for six years, and Vice Chair under the late Noreen Kelly for six years before that, convened the reorganizational meeting of the Howell Republican Committee this evening and promptly placed the name of former Councilman Juan Malave into nomination as the new Municipal Chairman.
Costigan lost his County Committee seat in last Tuesday’s primary. The incumbent slate of Council Members, supported by Malave, beat back a primary challenge from a slate believed to be backed by Costigan. Costigan denied backing the challengers but said he was glad they were running.
Many Republicans throughout Monmouth County were expecting Costigan to attempt to retain his Chairmanship, despite losing his seat. But the State Committeeman chose to bow out in a gracious gesture of unity by nominating Malave.