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November 22nd - December 5th , 2013 // VOL. 1 // ISSUE 15



HS Football Playoff Report

Indians Back On the Warpath

Jakes Branch Autumn Fun Day FREE! Take up to two copies. $2.00 each additional copy.

Ocean County Celebrates Veterans Day

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013


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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013


Three Area Residents Charged in Silver Ridge Apartment Brush Fire by Al DellaFave, OC Prosecutor’s Office

Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph D. Coronato announced the arrest of Dean M. Fornelius, 18, of South Toms River, as well as Toms River and Beachwood juveniles for allegedly starting two brush fires in the area of the Silver Ridge Apartments in Toms River Township. All three were charged with Arson for recklessly putting the forest in danger. On November 20, 2013, at approximately 3:46 pm, Toms River Police and Toms River Fire Department Companies 1 and 2 were dispatched for a brush fire at the Silver Ridge Apartments located at 359 Edgewood Drive in Toms River Township.

Upon arrival, emergency personnel observed smoke and active fire coming from two separate locations approximately 100 yards from each other. The fires were on the Toms River and Berkeley Township borders. The fire companies quickly extinguished the fires, preventing it from spreading beyond the immediate area. Toms River Police and New Jersey State Forest Fire Service requested Ocean County fire investigators respond to determine the origin and cause of the fire. Forest Service Fire Warden Brian Corvinus arrived on location and conducted a preliminary scene examination. He was quickly joined by Ocean County Prosecutor’s Arson Unit Detectives Thomas Has-

kell and John J. Doran, Toms River Police Det. Roger Hull, Berkeley Police Det. Scott Stoker, and Ocean County Fire Marshalls Bill Gee and Mike Wolfschmidt. While the arson investigators examined the scene and plotted the area of origin with GPS, Toms River Police developed descriptions of three suspects leaving the area of the fire and located one of the suspects on Highland Parkway in Toms River. The subsequent investigation led to the identity and apprehension of two other juvenile suspects. At the Toms River Police Department all partnering agencies met to compile all the facts of the tigation, which resulted in charges of Arson for all three.

Valor Award for County SWAT by Al DellaFave, OC Prosecutor’s Office The Ocean County Regional SWAT Team North Platoon by the New Jersey State Policemen’s Benevolent Association is to receive this year’s coveted Gold Medal of Valor Award. The team will be recognized for its outstanding police work at the annual Valor Awards Banquet, which will be held at the Golden Nugget in Atlantic City on Saturday, November 23, 2013. The team was selected for its role in the apprehension of Louis Cataldo, the owner of the

Brielle Sand Bar Restaurant who was accused of trying to kill his manager on June 18, 2013. Cataldo’s apprehension came after a fivehour standoff at his Point Pleasant residence, culminating with Cataldo being taken safely into custody despite firing his weapon. Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph D. Coronato today announced the selection of the Ocean County Regional SWAT Team North Platoon by the New Jersey State Policemen’s Benevolent Association to receive this year’s coveted Gold Medal of Valor Award. The team will be recognized for

its outstanding police work at the annual Valor Awards Banquet, which will be held at the Golden Nugget in Atlantic City on Saturday, November 23, 2013. The team was selected for its role in the apprehension of Louis Cataldo, the owner of the Brielle Sand Bar Restaurant who was accused of trying to kill his manager on June 18, 2013. Cataldo’s apprehension came after a fivehour standoff at his Point Pleasant residence, culminating with Cataldo being taken safely into custody despite firing his weapon.

the highest possible. According to Moodys, the AAA bond rating reflects the county's substantial tax base, solid financial management and modest debt burden with no short term borrowing. Bartlett noted that the Moodys rating came with a negative outlook which relates to the impact of Superstorm Sandy on the county's ratable base and Ocean County's actions in providing the funding to complete the task of debris removal following the storm which hit the area Oct. 29, 2012. "This negative outlook will be countered by future growth, albeit slow, in the county's tax base as rebuilding and recovery continues," Bartlett said. "The County also anticipates additional reimbursement from FEMA and the 18 municipalities that participated in the county's debris removal efforts. "It was important for the Board of Freeholders to take action that would help towns move mounds of debris from the streets

in order for the rebuilding to get under way," Bartlett said. "Because of sound fiscal practices, the County was in a position to undertake this part of the recovery, assisting its towns and its citizens in the aftermath of the storm."

Ocean County Retains AAA Bond Rating Despite Impact of Superstorm Sandy

From the Office of the Ocean County Board of Chosen Freeholders

TOMS RIVER – Ocean County has maintained a AAA bond rating, proving that even a Superstorm couldn't shake the county's financial stability. Ocean County Freeholder John C. Bartlett Jr., who serves as liaison to the Ocean County Finance Department, announced today that both Fitch and Moody's Investors Service have again given Ocean County the highest financial grade of AAA. "While Ocean County continues its recovery from Superstorm Sandy during already difficult economic times, the Ocean County Board of Chosen Freeholders has been able to maintain the top bond rating by adhering to sound financial planning," Bartlett said. "This Board continues to make fiscal responsibility a top priority and that is what is reflected in the bond ratings." Bond ratings range from Baa, the lowest, to AAA,

Fitch's rating came with a stable outlook and highlighted improved financial stability, sound management, conservative budgeting practices, prudent capital planning, manageable debt and long term liabilities and a commitment to stabilizing its surplus as key factors in the rating. Freeholder Director John P. Kelly said the freeholders recognized the downturn in the economy several years ago and immediately implemented steps to keep the county's finances stable. "We made difficult decisions that left us in a sound financial position so that we could respond to the storm, help in the recovery and continue to provide essential services to our citizens," Kelly said.

ON THE COVER • Main Photo: Toms River High School South’s Hitting Indians football team is victorious over the Moorestown Quakers. • Jackson Memorial defeats Rancocas Valley in playoff football action. • Families flocked to Jakes Branch Park for the annual Autumn Fun Day. • School student safety officers from elementary schools in Toms River Regional Schools were able to attend the Veteran’s Day parade as a special trip. Read the Ocean Signal online:


The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

Autumn Fun Day Again Attracts 1,000 Patrons

by Erik Weber OCEAN COUNTY - What park staff here thought was a single-year fluke when attendees flocked to this park just days after Hurricane Sandy devastated coastal communities and knocked power and heat out for many more last November was proven wrong this month when the number of patrons attending the annual Awesome Autumn Fun Day again reached around the 1,000 mark. “We had about 80 people in line for the hayride 15 minutes before we were even technically open, and at 2:30 pm or so I drove around to check the parking lots and counted about 250 cars at that point,” said Park Recreation Leader Jason Hoger, adding that each car appears to have between three and five family members or friends inside. Last year the annual event - which features hayrides, pumpkin bowling, games, candy-in-the-hay, face painting, a hay maze and more - turned into a much-desired relief from the down power grid, cold homes and devastated shore areas last year as hundreds flooded into the park from word of mouth on online social media that the event would go on. Thinking that the timing was just right for that year but was different one year later, Park Supervisor Michelle Urban, along with Mr. Hoger and the rest of her staff, projected they would only see about 500 participants this year, if they were lucky. “We’re very excited - I think this is going to be our thing,” she said, stating that the doubled attendance was an unexpected pleasure for the second year in a row and appeared to be building toward a larger annual event for local families. “This year we did try to solicit a little bit more in the way of donations,” Ms. Urban added, noting Perlmutter Shop-Rite and Applegate Farms, both of Bayville, to have been great sponsors this year. “We decided we were going to keep it free - last year we waived the admission fee with everything going on and the more we talked about it [for this year] the more we were like, let’s keep it free.” “Next year we’re going to have to ramp it up big time,” said Mr. Hoger. “We went through all our cider, all our cookies by 2:30 pm” - the event began at 1 pm - “and I literally ran back inside at one point and was


like, ‘What can I find for prizes?’ Some Smokey Bear magnets here and a couple of things there.” Ms. Urban hopes that the event helps build even more awareness for the park, which is located on the western side of the Garden State Parkway in this borough but often gets overlooked by the thousands of residents just a half mile away over the Birch Street Bridge. Programs and events continue through the winter, and include family campins, stargazing parties with the local astronomy club, night hikes, fireside stories with hot chocolate and more as she and her staff get ready for the spring. “I think during the event it gets so busy in here so I’m hoping people will be able

to come back and really enjoy the facility itself without the crowds,” the park supervisor said. “There were people here that day who said, ‘Wow, I’ve never been here before - how long has this place been open?’” recalled Mr. Hoger. “For the amount of time and money that goes into the event, the return is incredible - hopefully next year we’ll get as many people or more.” For more information on Jakes Branch Park programs, events and daily amenities, visit them online at, ‘like’ them on Facebook at or call (732) 281-2750. Jakes Branch Park is located on Double Trouble Road in Beachwood.

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013


16th Annual Jingle Bells Run Registration Open

TOMS RIVER – Registration is now open for the 16th Annual Jingle Bells 5K and One Mile Run through historic and scenic downtown Toms River to take place on Sunday, December 8th. The Rotary Club of Toms River will enter its seventh year sponsoring the race and is partnering with Toms River Schools’ T.E.A.M. (Together Everyone Achieves More) high school program and Monsignor Donovan High School to ensure the races, which begin and end at the Toms River Library on Washington Street, their annual success. Race participants will be afforded a quaint view of the downtown area as it will be decorated and lit up for the holiday season in the late Sunday afternoon, and the public is invited to come and cheer on the runners as they make their way out and back along the Washington Street stretch, beginning and ending in front of the Toms River Library. Registration fees for the five kilometer race is $21 per person or $18 per students received before December 7th. Early registrants will receive a race T-shirt. Participants registering on the day of the race will be charged $26 and receive a race T-shirt while supplies last. Fees for participants in the One Mile Fun Run & Fitness Walk will be $15 before December 5th and $20 after and includes a race T-shirt while supplies last. Race day check-in and registration begins at 1:30 pm and ends at 3 pm in the Mancini Hall of the Toms River

Library. New this year are a kiddie dash and women’s cut tee shirts while supplies last. A pasta party will commence for all race participants following the close of events; limit one serving per runner. Proceeds of the race will provide scholarships to graduating seniors from the Toms River high schools and Monsignor Donovan. Respective schools will recommend the scholarship recipient(s) to the Rotary Club of Toms River Jingle Bells Scholarship Committee for confirmation and distribution. An additional yearly scholarship, in memory of Detective Mark Catalano, will be awarded to a student entering into a law enforcement college program. Scheduled times for the start of the two races are 3 pm for the One Mile Fun Run & Fitness Walk and 3:30 for the 5K race. This will be the second year of the Toms River Alumni Team Challenge as part of the 5K race, inviting all graduates of the four Toms River high schools (South, North, East and Monsignor Donovan) to race for annual bragging rights as the fastest school. Returning 2012 Champions Toms River High School South are expected to return, and all original Toms River High School alumni are invited to run with them. Pre-registration is required with name, bib number and high school alma mater to the Team Challenge table at race headquarters before 2:30 pm on race day. Limit one race division and one team per high school with

minimum 3 participants to be eligible for an award. No limit to the number of participants. Scoring will be based upon the addition of clock times of team participants, and first place will be awarded to the team with the fastest total time of the team’s top three participants. Awards will be given in the 5K race to the top three male and female overall runners (with no duplications) followed by the top three males and females in five-year age groups including 14 and under and 70 and over. The Detective Mark Catalano Memorial Award will be given to the first, second and third place police officers from the Toms River Police Department. Further donations will be made from race proceeds and the Toms River Rotary to help the fight against breast cancer. The One Mile Fun Run & Fitness Walk will distribute awards to the top three male and female winners, and participation ribbons will be handed out to all race finishers. Applications and further race information can be found online at www. The Toms River Rotary Club first took over sponsorship duties with the Jingle Bells Run in 2007; previous organization sponsors included the Toms River Business Improvement District, the Dover Township Police Athletic League and the Toms River-Ocean County Business Improvement District.

Senatore Pleads Not Guilty To Child Endangerment by Carly Kilroy TOMS RIVER - Anthony Senatore, father of the 4-year-old Toms River boy who accidentally shot and killed 6-year-old Brandon Holt last April, entered a plea of not guilty through his attorney during his arrangement in front of Superior Court Judge Wendel E. Daniels on Monday, November 18th. Mr. Senatore, 34, is accused of leaving the loaded .22 caliber rifle, which was used to kill 6-year-old Holt,


as well as other firearms within reach of his 4-yearold son. Indicted on five counts of second-degree child endangerment and one count of third-degree child endangerment, Mr. Senatore also rejected a plea deal presented by the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s office. First Assistant Atlantic County Prosecutor Diane Ruberton confirmed the deal, which would require Mr. Senatore to plead guilty to one count of second-degree child endangerment

and one count of third-degree child endangerment in exchange for one seven-year term and one fouryear term to be served concurrently in a New Jersey State Prison. His attorney Robert A. Ebberup waived the reading of the indictments and told Judge Daniels during the arraignment that he was only provided with the materials less than 15 days prior to the arraignment and was unable to review all of the items within that time frame. Mr. Ebberup is requesting more information from the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s office that was not provided in the discovery phase, such as police notes, cell phone records of police officers on the scene, missing photos, shot gun shells, copies of search warrants, and audio recordings of those interviewed by investigators. Judge Daniels scheduled a conference in the case for Jan. 27th.

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

Crowds and Fly-Over Mark Return of Toms River Veterans Day Parade

by Erik Weber TOMS RIVER - Students, downtown office workers and residents returned to honor veterans and their sacrifices in the first Veteran's Day parade and ceremony since the aftermath of last October's Hurricane Sandy forced the cancelation of the 2012 event. Beginning on the northern part of Main Street on the crisp fall morning, active and retired members of our armed forces, marching bands from township and county high schools and middle schools, township officials, boy and girl scouts, local law enforcement and volunteer emergency response organizations, a riderless horse, antique car and tractor enthusiasts and more traveled south to Washington Street before turning east and continuing past town hall and beneath an American flag draped between two ladder fire trucks standing outside the Toms River Library at Courthouse Lane. Elementary school student safety officer from the Toms River Regional School District were on hand to greet the procession, often carrying banners displaying their school name, flags and placards showing the various branches of service. As the parade wound down, many of those along the route gathered along the Washington Street sidewalk in front of town hall as local clergy, officials from the township's governing body and David Perez, commander of Veterans of Foreign Wars A. Jay Weeks Post 6063, stood on the outside portico and held ceremony to thank military servicemen and women - including the parade's grand marshal, United States Marine Corps Sgt. William P. Carolan, a 2004 graduate of Toms Riv-

er High School North - and bring focus to the meaning of the 11th of November. Toms River Veterans Commission Chairman Paul Wnek introduced Reverend Dr. Michael Mazer, of East Dover Baptist Church, who opened with a benediction remembering those who served in the nation's armed forces, though "we cannot comprehend or summarize in words their experiences which brought them face to face oftentimes with the enemy and with death itself." He further asked that in the future there would be no need for war, and that we "resolve our differences without the need of discharging our young people to the fields of battle." The Toms River High School South Chorus, led by Director Philip Martin, then sang the National Anthem on a nearby walkway. Mayor Thomas P. Kelaher, a former Marine, next took the podium to first introduce other governing body officials and then note the challenges of the previous year due to Hurricane Sandy before noting three dedicated memorials on roadways within the township honoring former residents and servicemen who were killed in action during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Those servicemen include Marine Pfc. Vincent Michael Frassetto, a 2003 graduate of Toms River High School North, who was killed on September 7th, 2006 at 21 years of age when his convoy truck was struck by an improvised explosive device in Anbar province, Iraq, less than a month after leaving for duty; Marine Maj. James Matthew Weis, a 1991 graduate of Toms River High School North, who was killed on July 22nd, 2010 at 37 years of age during combat operations in the Helmand province of Afghanistan, where he

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there, he said, 'Admiral, I looked around the room and I was the oldest officer. All the other officers had younger families, and I stepped forward,'" he recalled. "That's the type of people we have in our military every day." Mr. Hill then stated that with the recent typhoon devastation in the Philippines, it would be the Marines stationed in Guam who would be part of the early relief efforts. "So around the world, we answer the call for freedom, and we also answer the call for people who are suffering," he continued. "So thank God for our military and thank God for all our veterans who have served." Sgt. Carolan then approached the podium and thanked those gathered before VFW 6063 Commander Perez read the names of those middle and high school students who won placement in the

annual Toms River Veteran's Commission essay writing contest on "What Patriotism Means to Me." Winners included Toms River High School South's Jared Freudenberg in first place and Toms River High School East's Declan Neilsen and Braden DeMartin in second and third for the high school level. Intermediate school winners included Haley Leonard, Abigail Morsch and Samuel Conover in first, second and third place respectively. Cmdr. Perez thanked all participants in the essay contest and invited any students who would be in either the intermediate or high school level within the district to submit essays next year on the theme chosen then as "It's an honor to read those essays, [and] it's a very hard thing to pick out the winners." Following a rifle salute on the lawn adjacent town hall

- a coordination issue led to the wreaths being delivered late to the ceremony - Toms River High School South's Nick Ziolkowski played taps and the ceremony was closed by Cmdr. Perez and a symbolic fly-over of two fixed-wing aircraft piloted by members of the Ocean Air Support Squadron, also known as the "Black Sheep," a volunteer air patrol arm of the Ocean County Sheriff's Department.

was serving as a helicopter pilot; and Navy Special Warfare Operator 3rd Class (SEAL) Denis C. Miranda, a 2003 graduate of Toms River High School East who was killed on September 21st, 2010 at 24 years of age in a Black Hawk helicopter crash in Qalat, Afghanistan during combat operations. "We honor all of our troops today, past and present, and it's particularly appropriate now because we need the troops and the military as much today as we have in the past," Mayor Kelaher said. "You read the paper today and watch the news media, all you have to do is look around and see all the trouble spots in the world where at any minute it could blow out of proportion." He then listed several contemporary global issues that appeared to present conflicts that could grow into larger problems. "So we have to be vigilant, we have to rely on our military and it's good that we honor them and let them all know that we support what they're doing," the mayor closed before introducing Councilman Maurice B. "Mo" Hill, an accomplished rear admiral with the Navy, retired, practicing in the field of dentistry. Mr. Hill then spoke of several veterans who he said represented most of those serving in the military citizen soldiers, including a Philadelphia police officer who was mobilized for the Gulf War in 1991, and a 55-year-old Navy captain and former Army helicopter pilot in Vietnam who stated he couldn't financially afford to be recalled to service after the September 11th, 2001 terror attacks but who showed up for service anyway. "He had already been in combat, [and] when I asked him what he was doing


The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

Presentations and Awards

by Daniel Malebranche TOMS RIVER - The following presentations and awards were given at the governing body’s November 12th meeting. Leslie Terjesen, public information officer for the Ocean County Health Department, gave a presentation about steps the department would like to consider taking to address the prevalence of teen smoking, such as making certain outdoor properties including the grounds on which the town hall and library are located smoke-free. Ms. Ferguson stated the importance of ensuring that new policies address emerging “e-cigarettes” as well. A sign for the prospective new campaign was presented to the council. Debbie Schwartz, coach of the girls’ softball team at Toms River High School East, was recognized for her achievements including winning four Shore Conference Tournament titles, and celebrating her 500th career victory. C.J. Beaudry, a Toms River boy, was recognized for founding local humanitarian organization Team

Cracker Jack, and raising money for Autism Speaks and for victims of Hurricane Sandy. C.J. trained for and participated in the Autism Speaks 5k Run, becoming the event’s top fundraiser. Two local Boy Scouts, Zachary Kolas and John Clemente, were recognized by the mayor and council for achieving the rank of Eagle Scout. John was not present for the meeting, but was expected to receive the honor at a future meeting. The Toms River Elks Lodge, in celebration of their 60th anniversary, was presented with an honorary proclamation by the governing body for their service to those in need in the community, their support of the police department, and their roles in bringing aid and food to those affected by Hurricane Sandy and supporting emergency workers. “We have a thousand members in this town. We kind of fly under the radar, we stay in the back, but we’re here when you need us,” said lodge trustee Dennis DeMey.

Vehicle Purchases Approved The council unanimously passed resolutions to replace seven township vehicles which had either exceeded 100,000 miles, were over ten years old, or were in a state of disrepair with 2014 Jeep Patriots to be purchased from Hertrich Fleet Services for a total amount not to exceed $132,062.75. Five of the vehicles are to be used for administrative purposes, while the other two are for the Recreation Department. Pat Lazlo of Ortley Beach questioned whether the replacements were truly necessary at this time. “My car is eight years old. I have 150,000


miles on it. Would I like a new car? Yes. I can’t afford it because I have to rebuild my house after Sandy. Are the cars not working, or are we just replacing them because they have 100,000 miles or are ten years old?” she asked. Council President Wittman stated the replacements were necessary. “I looked at some of the vehicles out at Building and Grounds about three weeks ago with Councilman Carr and I’m amazed that they’re still on the road in some cases.” Mr. Wittman emphasized the importance of employee safety.

Ordinances and Resolutions TOMS RIVER - The following are news and actions of the township’s governing body during their November 12th meeting. The council passed an ordinance carried from the previous council meeting on October 8th amending the parts of the township code regulating decks and yard areas. Councilman John Sevastakis abstained from the vote, citing a potential conflict of interest with the reconstruction of his property. The council was scheduled to vote on a refunding bond ordinance that would cancel $1.62 million in debt. Township Clerk J. Mark Mutter reported that the State of New Jersey Division of Local Government Services had not yet approved of this measure as of the date of the council meeting, meaning that it could not be adopted. The council unanimously agreed to carry the ordinance to the next meeting of the mayor and council on November 26th. The council considered an ordinance providing for emergency appropriation of $3 million for the payment of severance liabilities resulting from the retirement of township employees. When the matter was opened for public comment, township resident Nels Luthman asked whether sick days were capped. Council President George Wittman stated that they currently are capped for employees hired after 2010. Mr. Luthman asked whether sick day buyouts would be paid out gradually over a period of time or in the form of a single lump sum payment. Mr. Whitman and Business Administrator Paul Shives explained that the specifics of the payment would depend on the employee’s contract, but the employee would be able to decide whether to receive their payment in a lump sum or spread out over time. Mr. Luthman then stated that the Toms River School District had never bonded to pay for sick days in the past. Mr. Wittman explained that the volume of employees retiring has made bonding necessary. The ordinance was passed unanimously. The council unanimously passed a resolution establishing a procedure for reimbursing property owners who sustained damage to streetside trees and sidewalks damaged by trees during Hurricane Sandy. Mr. Wittman clarified that the amount of the reimbursement would be up to $750 for deductibles paid to insurance companies by the property owners. Resident Linda Stephens asked if FEMA reimbursement would play a part. Mr. Wittman stated that that was unknown at the time of the meeting, but that the township was applying for it. When asked for an explanation for a resolution accepting performance guarantees for a minor subdivision lot owned by BASF at 1298 Route 37 West and 227 Oakridge Parkway, otherwise known as the former Ciba-Geigy site, Township Planner Jay Lynch explained that the resolution was for bonding for the potential construction of sidewalks along the road adjoining the lot. The resident asked to meet with Mr. Lynch and the planning board to review why a sidewalk would be needed for a lot on which no specific development was planned, to which Mr. Lynch agreed. The resolution was passed.

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

SOUTH TOMS RIVER Mathis Plaza Rededicated for Military Veterans

Borough holds annual memorial ceremony

by Erik Weber SOUTH TOMS RIVER Mayor Joseph Champagne and members of the governing body, here, gathered alongside members of the Jersey Shore Base of Submarine Veterans to mark this year's Veteran's Day while also paying tribute to current and past servicemen and women of all branches by giving Mathis Plaza an updated name: Mathis Veteran Memorial Park. The idea for the name change arrived following an Eagle Scout project in April by Michael J. Bost, son of Navy veteran and chapter member Michael E. Bost, who together with his crew of volunteers from Howell Boy Scout Troop 150 and the Jersey Shore Base refurbished the torpedo, engraved pavers and grounds of the site, which has been home to a submarine veterans memorial since the mid-1990s. The borough also recently worked with the veterans organization to install grey stone columns around the pavers'

perimeter with heavy chain from the former Admiral Farragut Academy campus in Pine Beach strung between them. "We dedicate this Veteran's Day to our shipmates on eternal patrol, to perpetuate their memories in our lives and to honor our shipmates on active duty and the service of the first line of defense in our nation," stated base member Dick Rieger following the opening sounds of a klaxon horn to start the ceremony. Following the pledge of allegiance and the singing of the national anthem, Mayor Champagne addressed the crowd gathered. "Once again, another year, another season, another day and another time where all of us are gathering to reflect on the memories, the contributions, the sacrifice of valiant men and women for the freedom and safety of the nation," he said, greeting the veterans, town officials, law enforcement members and residents. "Oftentimes I reflect on the term 'veteran,' and we always think of those

who went on the battlefield, and it's right to think that, but I think whenever a human being decided to answer a call, a call that is bigger than themselves, their whole family has been involved in the answer of that call." "So not only is this individual a veteran, their family is also veterans," the mayor continued. "So today as we reflect on Veteran's Day, we extend our thanks and gratitude to those families that have borne the brunt of losing their loved ones, watching them go to distant lands not knowing when they're going to come

back or if they're going to come back." He stated that the families as well as the military servicemen and women should also be honored and respected for their sacrifices. "It is in that spirit that we in the Borough of South Toms River have decided to dedicate this waterfront property to those veterans and so we have decided to change the name from Mathis Plaza to Mathis Veterans Memorial Park," Mayor Champagne said, then gesturing to a vinyl banner draped across the gazebo in the center of the park reflecting the name change. "So this may be a little town, but it is a little town with a big park - Mathis Veterans Memorial Park." Base Commander Bob Cloupe then began the Tolling of the Boats, a ceremony honoring fallen submarine veterans, which he said was integral to the group's mission of perpetuating the memories of their shipmates "who gave their lives in the pursuit of their duties while serving their country." "In our participation, we remember that those gallant submariners who made the supreme sacrifice while performing their duties with honor, integrity and courage, and we demonstrate to our families and to our youth by the deeds that we honor them, pay tribute to them and salute them as all citizens of our great nation should," he said. "The Tolling of the Boats ceremony was originally established by the Submarine Veterans of World War II -

it is a unique and time-honored and it is in keeping with the finest traditions of the Navy." "At the heart of the ceremony, the names of each of the U.S. submarines lost, along with the fate of their crew, are read aloud as a bell is tolled for each in turn," the base commander continued. "In many ways, the Tolling of the Boats ceremony formally reaffirms to serving Navy submarine personnel that their current deeds and sacrifices follow in the footsteps of their fellow submariners who preceded them. We shall never forget the ultimate sacrifice they made so we all enjoy the fruits of freedom." Since the establishment of the submarine service, Mr. Cloupe stated that the Navy had suffered 65 submarine losses, including 53 during wartime - one in World War I and the balance in World War II - and 12 in peace time. South Toms River is also significant in the heritage of the submarine service as it was once home to inventor and entrepreneur Simon Lake, a man responsible for

many elements that made the modern submarine possible in the 1890s. Mayor Champagne previously stated that the park's rededication was to honor all branches of the armed forces, and currently several interested residents are working toward the establishment of possibly more monuments there in the near future. The park itself is manmade and formed by dredge spoils from the bottom of the Toms River in the late 1920s under the direction of county native and Secretary of State Thomas A. Mathis, who wanted to commemorate the thennew borough with its own park. It was built as a side project during a larger dredging project that built up the shoreline to the east of the Central Railroad of New Jersey right of way to allow the construction of what today is Route 166 in order to remove two rail line crossings that were causing more service delays as the population and use of automobiles grew through the 1920s.

Sandy Letter: Boro Business Owner Recalls Storm Experience One Year Later Editor, the Ocean Signal: On October 28, 2012, I began to follow reports more closely that a super storm was coming our way. I prepared by placing sand bags underneath the shop's doors. I also made sure the slabs were secure. Overall, I was optimistic, being that many of the storms that have hit our area, at least in my experience, have mostly been benign. Honestly, I went to bed more worried about my personal property than anything else. The next day was the beginning of devastation that I have never witnessed be-

fore. I got in my truck and started the slow drive to the shop. The roads were flooded, homes were damaged, and trees were down. Route 166 was blocked so I wasn't able to get to the shop until late that afternoon when the water receded. I walked through about a foot of water to get to the building. My anxiety level mounting with every step. As I opened the door, all of the contents in our showroom began flowing out. Finally, I made my way to the shop where digital machinery that I had invest-

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ed in was housed. Each were submerged in about 30 inches of water. That's when I thought to myself, "So, this is how it's going to end." 16 years wiped out in one day. But I wasn't ready to give up. I rallied my employees, and every single one of them volunteered their time to get the shop back on it's feet. After using fans to dry the machinery for four days, they finally started, with only a few issues that could be fixed. We were euphoric. We then turned our attention to the offices. And that was when anoth-

er miracle happened. My landlord offered to rebuild our offices. In three weeks we reopened for business. And with everyone's help we were fully functioning by January 1st. Today, I have immense respect for Mother Nature and during that time, I was so grateful for my employees, who helped me without question, that I also donated time and supplies to other Sandy victims whenever I could. Ed Cassidy Progressive Dimensions


The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

BRICK Legion Riders Aid Local Veterans and Active Duty Soldiers by Carly Kilroy BRICK - The Legion Riders of The American Legion Brick Memorial Post 348 are probably one of the more unique organizations involved in community events in the Ocean County area. “The Legion Riders are members of the American Legion who are also motorcycle enthusiasts,” said Treasurer Lisa Corris. “We can be found participating in mission of honors, parades, partaking in motorcycle events, and supporting the communities in which we live and play in.” Their main focus is to help raise money for disabled veterans, active duty members, and their families, she continued, adding that one of their most honorable duties is working in conjunction with New Jer-

sey Missions of Honor, an organization dedicated to finding and giving proper burial ceremonies to the orphaned and abandoned cremated remains of veterans in New Jersey. To date, the treasurer estimated the Brick Legion Riders have been involved with the pick-up, escort, and ceremonial services of at least 130 cremated remains, besides providing escorts for local active duty soldiers returning home from either boot camp or deployment. “We’ve done escorts for children my son’s age, my daughter’s age, that are missing arms, missing legs, that gave their all for our way of life,” she said, noting that those were often the most memorable and affected her the deepest emotionally. Last year, the Legion Riders also jumped on the

opportunity to help active duty members post in Ocean County after Hurricane Sandy devastated the shore. During that first Thanksgiving after the storm, the National Guard was still posted in devastated parts of the two Seaside boroughs and in surrounding municipalities and neighborhoods. Hearing this, the Legion Riders acted fast and spent their holiday making the guardsmen feel more at home by preparing approximately 16 deep-fried turkeys to serve as the men and women moved in and out of their 12 hour shifts. “We were feeding them as they came in for a meal,” explained Mr. Corris. Mrs. Corris and her husband, Sons of the American Legion member Kevin Corris, joined the Legion Riders about seven years ago

and today Mr. Corris acts as the group’s president. “I just saw them riding somewhere one day and wanted to be a part of it,” Mr. Corris said. According to the official American Legion website, there are over 106,000 American Legion Riders in over a thousand chapters nationwide as well as over-

Township Couple Receives Maximum Sentence In Animal Cruelty Case by Carly Kilroy BRICK - The municipal courtroom here broke out in cheers of joy Monday night as supporters of Sammy, a 15-year-old cocker spaniel abused by its former owners, jumped from their seats and applauded as Judge Robert M. LePore read aloud the fate of those owners - Kevin Martin, 56, and his wife Shauna Kennedy Martin, 43, of this township - for their guilty pleas of numerous counts of animal abuse. “The lack of care provided to Sammy was inexcusable and the way he was treat was despicable,” the judge said. before handing out maximum six-month jail sentences to husband and wife for the neglect and abuse they caused their pet. “I was in a bad time in my life. I was depressed - I didn’t mean for this to hap-

pen,” Mr. Martin said before the sentence was read. His wife also addressed the court saying, “I’m sorry, I should have made a better decision.” In conjunction with the jail sentence, the couple will also have to pay restitution to the Red Bank Veterinary Hospital in the amount of $13,582.57, as well as pay a $1,000 fine. They will have to serve 30 days of community service, will be on probation for three years, and are prohibited from ever owning another a dog again. Last March, the Martins took Sammy – who at the time was so covered in fecal matter and matted fur that he could hardly stand – to the Tinton Falls Humane Society claiming they had found him in a black garbage bag on the side of the road. Municipal Prosecutor Ste-

Cub Scout Pack 47 Holds 25th Annual Scouting For Food Event

by Carly Kilroy

BRICK - “I see one over there!” third graders Gage Bartolucci and Alex Thorn both yelled as they approached another cul-desac lined with yellow plastic bags filled with food. Gage’s mother, Rachel Bartolucci, stopped her car so the Cub Scout Webelos and their siblings could dash to the bags as if hunt-


ing Easter eggs and then run back, throwing them in the trunk. In this way they moved along their designated route, picking up bags almost as big as they were, until every last one was collected. This is the time of year when the boys of Cub Scout Pack 47 participate in their annual Scouting for Food event, the Boy Scouts of

seas. This township’s chapter is made up of about 60 members who commit to participating in about 25 or so events throughout the year. Although they ride yearround, their busiest time of year is during the summer months. In order to become a regular member, you must

be a member or spouse of a member in either the American Legion, American Legion Auxiliary, or Sons of The American Legion. Anyone who would like more information about The American Legion Riders can visit the Brick Memorial Post 348 webpage at

ven Zabarsky reminded the court of the dog’s physical condition when he was brought into the shelter through blown-up photographs and by stating that Sammy had a 104 degree temperature, was severely dehydrated, and emaciated. That night, Mr. Martin was praised for his efforts by the media and even conducted an on-camera interview with News 12 before it was later discovered that dog actually belonged to him and his wife. As Mr. Zabarsky played a video clip of the News 12 interview for the court, neither Mr. or Mrs. Martin could take more than a quick glance up at the screen as Mr. Martin is shown lying to the reporter about finding the dog on the side of the road. “My heart dropped. This is bad. I couldn’t understand anybody being that cruel,” Mr. Martin could be heard saying in the video. Mr. Zabarsky drove home his argument of this being a significant case. “What the Morgans need to understand is they didn’t America’s largest one day non-perishable food drive of the year, when scouts here distribute plastic bags and flyers explaining the event to over 2,000 homes in the Greenbriar communities one week before collection. “We’ve been doing this event for 25 years, so they’ve been used to us coming around for a while,” said Pack Master Bill Ackney. According to Raymond Guyre, one of assistant den leaders, Shop-Rite annually donates about 1 million bags nationwide to Boy Scouts of America for the event. Once all of the bags were collected, the boys and their den leaders brought the donations over to the Church of Epiphany on Thiele Road to be sorted and boxed for the church as well as other local food banks. “I think we picked up around 600 to 700 bags,” Mr. Ackney said. Once the Church of Epiphany and St. Thomas food banks are all stocked up, the remainder of the donations are sent over the

just show up one day with a dog in a garbage bag, give it to the humane society and walk away and that was it. They put into play a whole series of inter-agency action in this state. A lot of manpower, a lot of time, and a lot of money because of their conduct,” he explained. In an attempt to shed light on the various other outcomes that have come of those accused of animal abuse nationwide, the couple’s attorneys, Kevin Sheehy and Marc Shram, cited numerous cases in which they argued that animal abusers of much crueler standards were sentenced for their crimes without serving any sort jail time. “All the other judges took the easy way out,” Judge Lepore responded, later adding that “unless these individuals are imprisoned for their depraved and cruel acts, such acts of animal cruelty will continue.” The couple will appeal the judge’s decision and have not yet started to serve their sentences. Food Banks of Monmouth and Ocean Counties. “We do this drive around the same time every year, which stocks them up for Thanksgiving and Christmas,” he said. The Scouting for Food event is counted toward the boys goal of receiving a Good Turns Toward America award. Boy Scouts also participated in the event to work toward their community service efforts. Good Turns for American is a service project sponsored by the Boy Scouts of America, The Salvation Army, Habitat for Humanity, and the American Red Cross that helps to address the issues of hunger, lack of adequate shelter, and poor health in America.

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

Sister Of Fallen Soldier Puts Veterans Day Into Perspective

by Carly Kilroy BRICK - Instead of following through with the tradition of inviting a high ranking military leader to speak at Brick Township’s annual Veteran’s Day memorial service, the members of American Legion Post 348 instead decided this year to invite Mary Kubik, sister of fallen Army Sgt. Ronald A. Kubik, to help put the momentous day’s true meaning into perspective. “To many in this country, today is just another day. We so infrequently take the time to step back and think about what we are thanking our veterans for. Several years ago I was just as guilty. Celebrating freedom without actually understanding the tremendous cost,” Ms. Kubik said. After opening the ceremony singing the Star Spangled Banner in front of the Brick Township municipal complex where the

service was held, Ms. Kubik joined other speakers in affirming the importance of honoring those who serve. She spoke of the freedoms that service members fight to protect everyday overseas. “Because a veteran decided that the greater good was more valuable than their personal lives you have the freedom of religion, the freedom to assemble, the freedom to petition, the freedom of the press, and freedom to speak,” noted Ms. Kubik. She knows all too well what happens when soldiers make the ultimate sacrifice in order to protect the greater good and spoke candidly about her relationship with her brother. He decided to enlist in the military in 2007. At the time, Ms. Kubik was an active protester against the war in Iraq and said her brother knew she would not be thrilled about the news. “Ronnie joined to uphold the constitution, to secure our freedoms. I was protesting dangerous legislation for the same reason. To insure the freedoms we have on paper were protected and executed,” she explained. After his first deployment, it was their difference in opinion about the

war that brought the siblings into an argument that was followed by what Ms. Kubik describes as one of the most meaningful conversations she ever had with her brother. “He closed with a comment I will never forget: ‘I fight, so you can fight. Follow your heart and change lives sis’,” she said. Sgt. Kubik of Brielle was only 21 years old when he was killed in Afghanistan on April 23rd, 2010. “As a result of his service and sacrifice I have a new respect and gratitude for the freedoms we take for granted every single day,” Ms. Kubik said. Mayor Stephen Acropolis, who is an Air-force veteran, was also in attendance and among those who spoke of the importance of Veterans Day. “We gather together to honor those veterans whose services and sacrifices make it possible for our nation to thrive. Guaranteeing freedom and democracy for us and making our nation a beacon of hope and freedom throughout the world,” he said, adding that “no matter what dangers we face as a nation, we know with confidence and faith that those dangers can be overcome because you, veterans, have showed us how to overcome it.”

Mayor-Elect Humbled by Community Support

by Carly Kilroy BRICK – Democratic Councilman John Ducey was ready to get to work the second he received the call confirming election results that he would be this township's new mayor. “I was humbled by the fact that that many people in Brick held the same beliefs that I do and felt strongly enough in the plan that I put forward to actually go out to the voting places and vote for me,” he said. Mayor-Elect Ducey, who will begin his term on New Year's Day, believes it was the ability of voters to think critically about the issues and platforms presented to them in conjunction with the ability to cross party

lines that helped earn him the first democratic mayor seat in Brick since 2006. “After voting for Chris Christie and the rest of the Republican ticket, when it comes down to the actual local Brick mayor race and council race, they decided on the issues and person rather than just the party alone,” he said, noting that his desire to enter politics with a successful council bid in 2011 was a direct response to living and owning a business and seeing his taxes continually rise. “I figured maybe if I get on the council I'll be able to do something about it.” As councilman, Mayor-Elect Ducey said he was able to help keep the municipal tax rate at a flat

zero-increase level, but the experience taught him that he would need to run for mayor in order to have a say where the spending goes under Governor Christie's two-percent tax cap. He also acknowledged that taking on the position of mayor means accepting challenges faced by the township as they come up, as evidenced through such a major natural disaster as Hurricane Sandy last October and its effect on the property tax base and expected appeals from those still unable to return home. Despite these issues, Mayor-Elect Ducey stated that he is eager to start working with residents to make Brick an affordable place for families to live and can be proud of their municipal government. “I'm very open-minded and I enjoy hearing all ideas - I like to build a consensus, not only between council members and mayor, but between parties so that everyone can come together for the good of the town,” he said. “I'm looking forward to hearing from all of the residents about all of their different ideas and coming to a consensus just to make Brick a better place to live.” Photo by Jason Allentoff, Townsquare Media NJ

Brick Residents to “EAT MOR CHIKIN” On November 18th, Mayor-Elect John Ducey met with officials from ChickFil-A to break ground at the site of the chain’s future location on Route 70 near the Lowe’s Home Improvement store. Chick Fil-A will join a line of new restaurants in the township over the past several months, including Joe’s Crab Shack and Smash Burger. The nearest ChickFil-A currently, is in Howell Township. Read the Ocean Signal online:


The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

Brick Council Meeting Briefs by Carly Kilroy BRICK - The following are news and actions of the township governing body from their November 12th meeting. CERT TEAM GRADS

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The Office of Emergency Management held their sixth emergency response team graduation during the meeting. “Our [Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)] volunteers train to become partners with all of our emergency services and they participate in every major event and emergency we deal with,” Chief Nils Bergquist said. Lead by instructors Joseph J. Pwlowicz, Joseph Gilsenan and the chief, volunteers take on the commitment of participating in nine, two to three hour, training sessions within the realms of disaster preparedness, fire safety, disaster medical operations, search and rescue, and disaster psychology. The volunteers also learned through practicable hands on simulated situations. Chief Bergquist noted that 27 of the 36 volunteers who came out for the training are residents of Brick, raising the townships number of active members to 53. “What makes this session significant is that 14 of the volunteers are hearing impaired,” he added. Listed below are the names of those who completed the CERT session: Dawn Buerck, Susan Coleman, Tyler Connelly,Elizabeth Contreras, Joseph Crosta, Bunnie Delancy, Diane Eaton, Alfred Ferrara, Jdominic Figaro, Linda Figaro, Judith Hromoko,Michael Hromoko, Billie Johnson, Jeannette Johnson, Ashraf Kovack, Diana McCaffery, Edward McCaffery, Teresa McCall, Brian McMahon, Bruce Miller, Cynthia Oberlin, Catherine Purrazzella, Bruce Rimmer, Rhonda Rimmer, Charles Schmidt, Robert Sheridan, J a q u e line Stackable, Jaqueline Starke, Paul Stephenson, Susan Stephenson, Lori Timney, Mary Tivenan, Roberta Weitze, Henry Wohlers and John Youngclaus.


Failed Vote Ends Proposed Ordinance Due to the lack of a majority vote, the ordinance to hand over township property to Ocean County in compliance with the Garden State Parkway Exit 91 project - officially known as Interchange 91 - failed to pass and would need to be reintroduced if desired for a second attempt. According to the ordinance, “The County of Ocean reached out to the Township of Brick in association with a fee simple conveyance to the County as necessary for a joint roadway improvement project between the County of Ocean and the New Jersey Turnpike Authority known as the Garden State Parkway, Interchange -91.” It would have permitted Ocean County to continue the project, which the ordinance states is to "simplify traffic patterns and relieve congestion on local roads," and which is

already in progress. Residents, especially those from Evergreen Woods Condominiums, voiced their concerns over the lack of communication on the end of the New Jersey Highway Authority. They believed not allowing the ordinance to pass would heighten the awareness of their concerns to the authority. Listed concerns include the long term effects on their property, such as unsettling vibrations from the roadwork impacting the foundations of their homes, sewage systems, and underground utilities. Some also wanted to know what would be done about the sound barriers along the highway and the effects they may have on their property value. With only four council members present at the meeting, the vote ended in a 2-2 tie.

Barrier Island Easement Eminent Domain Ordinance Passed An ordinance was passed allowing the township to use eminent domain in the event that it is needed to obtain the benefits of revetment and replenishment projects due to the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy. According to the ordinance, “...the governor issued Executive Order No. 140, wherein he declared that the construction of flood hazard risk reduction measures along New Jersey's coastline, including in the township, is necessary to protect the public health, safety, and welfare from future natural disasters, and the reliance on certain statutory authority for the acquisition of necessary for such efforts.”

Township Attorney Jean Cipriani acknowledged that it is not the townships intent to use eminent domain and that voluntary easements are coming into the township on a daily basis. “It is our goal to get all easements voluntarily and to not have to move to condemnation. However, this ordinance does authorize us to do so if necessary to obtain the benefits of the revetment and replenishment projects,” she said. She also stated that at the time of the meeting, the township had collected 71 voluntary easements from residents. At that time they still needed 47 additional easements in order for the project to go through.

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

OCEAN GATE Ceremony Honors Veterans Dozens of residents, including numerous veterans and their families, took time to honor and reflect upon the lives and actions of our past and current military servicemen and women during the borough's annual Veteran's Day ceremony at Veteran's Park, Ocean Gate Drive, on November 11th. Ocean Gate Veteran Member Al Panzino donated a new eagle statuette to perch over the monument after the last one was destroyed in Hurricane Sandy last October. ERIK WEBER / OCEAN SIGNAL

Beach Prism Project to Begin OCEAN GATE - Mayor Paul Kennedy announced that the long-awaited beach prism project proposed to help prevent erosion and aid in restoring areas of the riverfront, here, will begin construction on Monday, November 25th. To be completed in two phases, the project will see 35 prisms installed in the Toms River in the vicinity of the Angelsea Avenue beach parking lot off East

Longport Avenue with an estimated completion by Wednesday, November 27th, weather permitting. The prisms, he stated this week, will be placed in the water approximately 20 to 30 feet offshore. If the first phase of the project is successful, a second phase will take place, depending upon further action by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. The public will likely see the prisms in the water sometime after 2 pm Monday. For more information, please contact Mayor Kennedy by email at ogmayor@

Boro Tree Lighting

The Ocean Gate Recreation Committee will hold the annual tree lighting in front of borough hall on Ocean Gate Avenue on Saturday evening, December 14th at 6 pm. All are invited to attend.

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013


Seer Farms Helps Family Pets Weather Crisis to Solution

by Christa Riddle JACKSON - Founded in 2008, Seer Farms Sanctuary, here, has provided extended and temporary care for pets to keep animals and their families together during difficult times when families are not able to provide on-going adequate care for their pets, often involving crises such as disasters, illnesses, foreclosures, domestic violence situations, military deployment, and other times of transition. Since opening its doors, the sanctuary’s Out of Crisis program has reunited over 300 pets with their families at a rate of over 85 percent of animals returning to their homes. During their stay, animals benefit from appropriate veterinary care, food, and socialization, and no animal is turned away due to illness or old age. The facility also provides rescue, care, and placement services for multiple species of animals in addition to cats and dogs while easing the transition for families and their animals during the surrender process. It all started when founder and executive director, Dr. Laura Pople, saw what she felt was far too many heartbreaking news stories about “foreclosure pets,” or pets left behind by their owners following the loss of their dwelling to economic strains, starting with the financial crash five years ago. “Shelters were seeing an increase of 20 to 30 percent in surrenders due to the 2008 economic crisis and foreclosures, and time and


time again, I heard of families wishing there was some place for them to leave their pets temporarily until they could get settled and back on their feet,” said Dr. Pople. “They were afraid they would permanently lose their pets or have to abandon them [and] it seemed to me that something could be done to help alleviate some of the pain. And that perhaps, if I put together the right group of people, we could actually effect change for the good with a program that allowed for a temporary surrender of animals.” Seer Farms partners with professionals like disaster relief agencies, social advocates, and real estate agents to assist people in the process of reclaiming their lives as they knew it before encountering their crisis while avoiding high boarding fees and remaining involved for the duration of the crisis event. During Hurricane Sandy and its aftermath, sanctuary workers placed as many animals as possible at their facility in Jackson then extended foster network and secured satellite locations to accept the overflow of pets in need. The organization received referrals from FEMA, the American Red Cross, and other Hurricane Sandy-focused case workers assisting with pets from across New Jersey. Four days after the devastating storm made landfall here, on November 3rd, Dr. Pople received a call from an animal extraction team pulling pets from damaged and destroyed homes on

the Barrier Island. “They wanted to know if we would accept a semi-trailer loaded with 88 pets, including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, hamsters, birds, reptiles, and a bunny,” she said. “Even though we were still without power that we had lost during the storm, our immediate response was, ‘How soon can you get here?’” Seer Farms had only three hours to prepare, however, their experience in dealing with desperate situations over the previous four years rendered them qualified and ready to accept the animals in need. By 9 pm, the “Seaside 88” arrived with a police escort and the sick, frightened, and traumatized animals were triaged. Within 24 hours, Seer Farms had a veterinary team on-site to provide medical attention and immunizations. Veterinary crises arose from the animals’ prolonged exposure to toxic flood water, a lack of fresh drinking water and food, and isolation. Since most pet health histories were unavailable due to the storm— yet another challenge faced— all animals were treated as if they had no veterinary history. Pet owners began to arrive at Seer Farms that same night after learning the location of their pets, and within a day or two, about half of the families were reunited with their animals. The final two “Seaside 88” pets were reunited with their owners a year to the day after their arrival. Today, the facility still gets Hurricane Sandy cats and dogs and wants people to know that Seer Farms is capable of handling the need resulting from the devastating storm that is on-going because families are finally securing the necessary money to execute and finish home repairs and construction. Many had been living in temporary housing or inhabiting the second floors of their residences due to storm and flood damage, situations that often do not

allow families to keep their pets living with them. The sanctuary has approximately 60 dogs and 300 cats in their care at any given moment, and the 2013 census came in at 150% of the previous census, illustrating the need for the community-based service. Keeping up with the demands of Hurricane Sandy survivors has affected Seer Farms, who now maintains the main sanctuary plus another facility and an extensive foster network to accommodate as many displaced animals as possible. They are also in the process of building a new facility. In March, a months-

long land use zoning issue threatened the existence of the sanctuary’s West Veterans Highway location due to 2011 zoning changes. However, Jackson’s zoning board approved a necessary land use variance in July that allowed the 2.8acre facility to continue serving the community, although certain restrictions to protect the surrounding community were put into effect, such as limits for the maximum number of pets housed and the securing of permits and inspections when building new animal enclosures. Throughout the zoning episode, Seer Farms received a multitude of sup-

port. Seer Farms, a non-profit 501c(3), relies upon donations and fundraising to help support its mission. For more information, visit Seer Farms online at www. or on Facebook under Seer Farms. The website provides background information on Dr. Pople and the organization, as well as opportunities to volunteer, donate, adopt, and foster pets. It also presents “Happy Tails,” heartwarming personal stories of pets being reunited with their owners. The sanctuary can be reached at 732928-1804 or via email to

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

Board Carries Hearing on Private High School Again Window of Opportunity to Open in September Closing

by Phil Stilton

the driving restriction could be conditional based on the approval of the application and, “not and idle promise made to get your approval.” Shea addressed Mr. Burrows and said if he was not satisfied with the truthfulness of the client’s testimony, to impose the full parking requirement on the application. Mr. Borden said the school’s sewage system is equivalent to 7 residential homes, but when pressed by Mr. Gasiorowski, he accepted that instead his proposal is 300% over what is accepted for the site and the application. Elaborating on his choice to build in Jackson, Birnbaum said he has searched for a location in Brick, Howell, Lakewood and elsewhere in Jackson but could not find a suitable site large enough for a high school. He said the Lakewood Industrial Park is not a suitable location for his school. Currently there are other schools operating in that park. John Burrows questioned the use of buses at the school and asked whether or not all students will opt to use public transportation. He further wanted to know if there could be any guarantee that alternative methods of transportation will be used or that smaller buses could be used. “You have to allow that it can be a possibility in the future,” Mr. Shea stated. Dr. Hoffstein asked the applicant if an emergency evacuation plan was considered in this proposal. William Stevens of Professional Design Services, representing the applicant, said the safety considerations would be made by the fire department and police department. He has not received a plan approval from the police department. Dr. Hoffstein asked if fire sprinklers would be installed at the 400 student school. “No,” Mr. Stevens replied.

JACKSON - The window of possibility for the Oros Bais Yaakov all-girls high school opening in time for the start of the September 2014 school year is slowly closing as the township zoning board once again postponed their hearing on the application for the project. Approximately 1,200 residents attended this week’s meeting held at the Jackson Memorial Fine Arts Center., where after four hours the application was again carried to the next meeting, to take place on February 19th of the new year. Prior to the meeting, Jackson Police Sgt. Christopher Parise, police officers and Citizen Emergency Response Team (CERT) members held a safety and security briefing to accomodate the large crowd and to discuss strategy in the event of a public disturbance, but it was not necessary. Red Bank attorney Ron Gasiorowski identified himself as a land use attorney representing an individual homeowner in the case against Rabbi Ephraim Birnbaum, the applicant for the variance which seeks to build a private high school on a residential zoned lot on Cross Street. Mr. Gasiorowski’s introduction was met with applause and cheers. The zoning board reminded the audience to not applaud or break decorum. During testimony, zoning board member Dr. Sheldon Hoffstein asked the applicant why they chose this parcel of land. “The land we found here was at a much better price than we found in Lakewood and we felt it was a better fit in our school. Land is at a premium in Lakewood,” said Rabbi Ephraim Birnbaum. Board member John Suttles questioned why the applicant requested an enclosure on the proposed swimming pool, if the school will be closed in the summer. Mr. Ian Borden, representing Birnbaum, replied that the school’s pool will be used for physical therapy. Suttles asked why is there a need for a pool in a school that will be closed in the summer, stating, “It’s like buying a snow mobile in Arizona.” Mr. Shea confirmed the school will not be used in the summer. Dr. Hoffstein asked the applicant how he could ensure the operation of the school, in particular, kids not driving to school, would affect potential future owners or administrators at the school. Mr. Shea replied that the applicant would state that Read the Ocean Signal online:

“The safety of the children would be jeopardized,” Dr. Hoffstein said. “The safety of the students should be considered.” Mr. Shea said the law does not require the applicant to install sprinklers. ”Laws are sometimes changed after something bad happens,” Dr. Hoffstein replied. Kathleen Flores, architect on the project said building codes dictate fire safety. Sprinkler systems are required at 25,000 square feet per floor and their project is 17,000 square feet per floor. “We will not be exceeding and will be far less than what will be permitted,” she testified. Mr. Gasiorowski asked Ms. Torres if a building with a fire suppression system is safer than a building without. Torres responded, “Yes.” “They have the right to build this building without the water suppression system,” Shea stated. “The reason why we’re here this evening is that this applicant does not have the right to build this building before this board but is seeking relief before this building that he may,” Mr. Gasiorowski said. ”The applicant has taken a somewhat cavalier attitude towards this building to say he has the right to not build a water suppression unit.” He then reminded the applicant that the only right on that site is to build two single family homes. Flores agreed. “You’re seeking to build a building that will contain 400 people with no fire suppression system where it is allowed to only build two residential dwellings,” Mr. Gasiorowski stated. Jim Guldner, a retired professional engineer, disputed the applicant’s assessment on sewage and suggested a deed search to ensure there are no easements in perpetuity and said there was no absence of presence of wetlands by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP). Galassi Court resident James Hayes said Jackson Township should learn from the mistakes of Lakewood and that while the state mandates that schools are beneficial, it doesn’t mandate that the board must vote yes on the application. He also criticized the applicant’s school for promoting segregation. ”Segregation was demolished in the 60’s,” he said. ”We have schools that accommodate people’s differences.


The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013


Quick Chek Seeks New Location Zoning Use Approved; Site Hearing Carried to Nov. 25th by Erik Weber BEACHWOOD - After a little over a quarter-century at its current site, the Quick Chek Corporation is seeking to move its chain convenience store and pharmacy, here, from space in the aging plaza on Atlantic City Boulevard between Windward and Pacific avenues to a proposed new 8,000 square foot standalone convenience store/pharmacy and fuel dispensing station three blocks north on the same roadway. The new site, if approved, is roughly double in size with a structure set to modernize and directly compete their local operations with its main rival, Wawa Inc., which owns and operates a similar chain location 1.3 miles south on the same roadway. On Monday evening, October 28th, the borough land use board met to consider first an interpretation of permitted use on the proposed new site, which includes properties that hold both B-1 business and R-B residential zoning restrictions, then a conditional use variance allowing the operation of the fuel dispensing part of the business to operate in less than 1,000 feet of another - a Sunoco gas station currently occupies the commercial property across the highway - and within 500 feet of a church or place of assembly - St. Paul's Lutheran Church stands roughly two blocks to the north. Besides the store itself, the site proposal includes eight fueling dispensers beneath a canopy, 13 seats

for customers, 45 parking spots (an increase by 15 over the current, older site's 30 shared by three businesses), four underground double-walled fuel storage tanks, a dumpster area enclosed by masonry and a locked gate, stormwater management, fencing, a raised berm and landscaping buffer to limit the impact on the Capstan Avenue residential neighborhood. State highway traffic adjustments were also proposed to include a left turn lane for southbound traveling vehicles for an entrance located directly across from Neptune Avenue. Currently, the highway block includes a long oneand-one-half story combined retail and apartment structure that houses Don Found It, a pre-owned furniture and home decor business; a bi-level house operated by The Moving Guys, a full service moving business; a remnant of the Pennsylvania Railroad right of way that cut through town and is marked here by an undeveloped strip of property; a red, boxy two-story retail building with Amelia's Antiques; and three residential homes along Capstan Avenue. The majority portion of the block proposed for redevelopment is owned by Frederick R. "Ted" Wiedeke, Jr., a practicing lawyer from Bayville, and includes all but the red commercial building and one residential home, both located on Lookout Street. Henry L. Kent-Smith, Esq., of Fox Rothschild LLP from Lawrenceville, Mercer County, represented the convenience store chain in the land use board hearing and noted that a mis-advertisement for the application at an earlier meeting allowed what he called a

constructive conversation with concerned residents regarding, among other things, a site entrance on Harpoon Street, which previously was located farther into the residential block but has since been moved closer to the highway where today there exists an entrance to the Don Found It business. Board members first questioned the viability of the left-hand turn lane into the site for southbound drivers, particularly during late afternoon rush hour times when heavy traffic often causes slow-moving travel from as far northwest as Beachwood Boulevard all the way down to Motor Road in Pine Beach, a length of approximately one mile. "It gets very congested there," said Board Member Patricia Barndt. Chairman Tom Prince stated that he was largely concerned with traffic circulation onto, within and off of the proposed site, stating that he "[didn't] believe that that entrance is located properly or even designed properly for what traffic we have, off hours or not," noting that he felt there should be one dedicated entrance for incoming traffic and one dedicated exit for outbound vehicles. "When I look at that all I see is a big bottleneck," agreed Ms. Barndt. Mr. Prince then asked where the vents for the underground storage tanks would be located and whether there were any noticeable fumes possible, to which Keith Cahill, project engineer with Bohler Engineering, stated there were no noticeable fumes due to contemporary technology. The chairman then asked whether the corporation conducts groundwater testing and whether any em-

TRIS Scholarship Craft Fair - Dec. 7th BEACHWOOD – Just in time for the holiday season is a chance to buy local and give unique to your loved ones and friends with the 3rd Annual Toms River Intermediate South Scholarship Craft Fair. On Saturday, December 7th from 10 am to 4 pm, attendees will have the chance to pick out one of a kind quality gifts of home decor, jewelry, fine art, photography, crochet and knit items, handmade bags, homemade treats, children's accessories and more not found in your local chain retailers. Come buy something handmade in the USA for everyone on your list while feeling good about supporting the Community Service Scholarship for alumni of TRIS, which was


founded in 2011 year to inspire civic responsibility and reward youths who give back to their community through service. After shopping the day away, relax and enjoy lunch and refreshments served by the TRIS Student Council at the Seminole CafÊ Dollar Deli. The success of each year’s show results in scholarships awarded to two exceptional young people who were students at the school and are now graduating high school and on their way to college. The selection committee, consisting of teachers, community volunteers, and local government representatives, reviews many blind scholarship applications and yearly faces a very difficult decision.

All of the applicants must meet community service hours requirements and write essays that reflect a sense of community and belief in giving back. Come to the TRIS Craft Show and find something unique for everyone on your list! Please join us to support this worthwhile effort and the crafters, artists & artisans who make this Community Service Scholarship possible. Space is still available, with 5' by 10' going for $30 each. For more information or a vendor application, please email Toms River Intermediate South is located at 1675 Pinewald Road in Beachwood.

ployees were trained to recognize any tank monitoring or other spillage alarms that would allow them to contact the proper authorities and begin mitigating any environmental threats immediately, particularly due to the close proximity of the Toms River and Barnegat Bay watershed just blocks to the north. Mr. Cahill stated that there would be a large oil/water separation system that would stop any pollutants from reaching the watershed, and that alarms would go off throughout the site and be responded to properly by hired and trained personnel. Speaking on the zoning portion of the application, Capstan Avenue resident Fred Wussow argued against granting the Quick Chek Corporation the ability to operate the entire site as in a standard business zone as one of the lots carved out in an odd dimension due to the railroad right of way showed an overwhelming majority being located in the residential zone as opposed to the business zone. "To me I think it's an unfair consideration - the majority of this is residential and obviously I'm biased," he said, referring to just one of the lots mid-block included in the overall site proposal. Mr. Prince asked land use board attorney, Robert E. Ulaky, whether he knew if the percentage of a mixed business/residential zoning affected its possible use approval, which Mr. Ulaky said it did not. Richard Murray, a local attorney representing the owners of the red commercial building on the corner of Lookout Street, asked the board to consider an increase in traffic, an abundance of potential ambient light spreading through the adjacent residential neighborhood and possible flooding as much of the site remains unpaved. Board Member William Cairns stated that a traffic study included in the application showed the site would not generate additional traffic but instead would just draw from what is already present. "I'm very concerned about the traffic patterns but I would also like to see Beachwood grow," said Ms. Barndt. "I think we need commercial businesses." The motion to approve the applicant's use of the site for business purposes was approved by a majority of board members and passed.

Moving on to the main application proposal, Frank Marciano, real estate manager for the Quick Chek Corporation approached the board his role with the firm and why they were seeking to move locations and upgrade. Noting that the lease on the old property expires in 2017, he stated that they had been scouting locations and felt the one farther north on the highway appropriate for a complete relocation of their store and pharmacy plus an increase to a fueling location as it "creates a onestop shopping opportunity" for "pass-by traffic" to enter the site on their way to or from a primary destination. He added that regardless if the proposed new site were approved, the corporation was not looking to renew its lease at the old plaza location. Mr. Kent-Smith asked if anything fundamental was changing about the way Quick Chek operated now on its current site, other than the addition of the fuel dispensing stations. "Nothing other than enhanced because of a better facility, more updated, wider aisle widths, updated equipments and better product offerings," said Mr. Marciano, who added that on average the current site was also filling approximately 1,000 to 1,100 prescriptions per week. "It's more conveniently located." Ms. Barndt asked whether they were planning on offering a drive-thru prescription service in the new facility, and Mr. Marciano replied they did not. Board Member Paul Swindell said he felt the presence of the pharmacy made the current and new site both primary destinations for part of their clientele, as he noted it was the primary reason he currently solicits their store, which could mean an increase in traffic. Mr. Kent-Smith agreed that the pharmacy part of the store is one of a "combination of multiple different aspects of what we do each day," including fueling one's vehicle, filling a prescription and getting a snack. He added that the new inclusion of limited seat-

ing areas both inside and outside the retail building would make an added convenience for customers while also cutting down on outside trash, as their studies have shown sites without such amenities have customers who eat in their cars after their purchase and sometimes litter in the parking lot. On trash pickup, Mr. Marciano stated the hours and frequency could be regulated so as not to interfere with peak hours or disturb the adjacent residential neighborhood, and that employees would be trained and keep schedules for maintaining the property in a clean state. Deliveries to the site would include about six tractor-trailer and six box truck loads per week using a dedicated loading zone where today the current site uses Windward Avenue as its loading area, causing traffic sight issues for motorists trying to navigate in and out of the plaza and also on and off Atlantic City Boulevard. The real estate manager added that landscaping and foliage buffers would be regularly maintained and trees that die would be removed and replaced as needed. Light pollution would also be mitigated through the use of recessed lighting beneath the fueling canopy and further contemporary lighting fixtures that restrict such pollution at night around the property. Mr. Prince stated that he was largely concerned with traffic circulation onto, within and off of the proposed site, stating that he "[didn't] believe that that entrance is located properly or even designed properly for what traffic we have, off hours or not," noting that he felt there should be one dedicated entrance for incoming traffic and one dedicated exit for outbound vehicles. The Quick Chek Corporation's application was carried to the following meeting on Monday, November 25th at 7 pm due to the late hour of the proceedings at this point in the proposal at the October meeting.

Christmas Tree Sale, Santa Breakfast and Tree Lighting

BEACHWOOD - The annual Beachwood Volunteer Fire Company tree sale fundraiser will begin on Sunday, December 1st and

run through the month until the trees are sold out from their firehouse property, located on the corner of Beachwood Boulevard

and Maple Street, here. December 1st is also the date of the annual Breakfast with Santa at the fire hall, which takes place from 8 am to noon and includes all-you-can-eat scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage and pancakes plus orange juice, coffee and tea. Adult tickets are $6, children eight and up are $3, and kids under 8 eat free. Later that evening on December 1st, the borough will hold its annual tree lighting at borough hall on Pinewald Road at 7 pm, which will include the singing of Christmas carols, Santa arriving on a fire engine and greeting children inside, plus hot cocoa and cookies.

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

ISLAND HEIGHTS Community Calendar Broadway Star Holiday Show Start your holidays off with laughter, food and friendship as Broadway star and radio celebrity, Chrstine Pedi performs her holiday show, “There’s No Bizness Like Snow Bizness” at the John F. Peto Studio Museum on December 11th at 6 pm. This event is the post-poned August performance of “Music Under the Stars: An Evening with Christine Pedi.” A taps dinner of twelve tasting plates including appetizers, entrees and dessert will be served. A cash bar will be available. A silent auction with great holiday gifts, a beautifully decorated tree and Christine’s performance will delight us all. All tickets must be purchased in advance no later than December 3rd. Cost is $50 per person for dinner and the performance. Any patrons who previously purchased a $100 table for the summer concert will not have to pay to enjoy this event for up to two people. Anyone who purchased a ticket (full price or discounted member price)

for the summer concert will need only to pay $25 per person for the event. For more information and an admission/purchase form, visit the Peto Museum online at Also at the museum and continuing through December 31st is the National Juried Trompe l'oiel Exhibition, inviting artists working in the that style to participate with a declared purpose of showcasing contemporary artwork that "fools the eye" and demonstrates the innovative ways in which artists continue to express themselves through trompe l'oiel. Stories Around Island Heights The special five-part storytime series, "Stories Around Island Heights," continues with stories, songs and activities in a different location each week for preschoolers and their parents. The schedule is as follows: Wednesday, December 4th at 10:30am – A New Corner Deli Wednesday, December 11th at 12:15pm – Shore Ballet School Those interested are asked to call the library at (732) 270-6266 for more infor-

mation or to register. Registration is also available on the county library website at Pavilion Paver Sales The riverfront paver project in front of the Central Avenue pavilion is underway for anyone interested in purchasing an engraved paver that will be set for all to see and read. Cost is $99 per paver and includes two lines at 13 characters per line, including spaces. Installation will begin in the center around the compass rose and work its way outward - no specific location requests will be honored. Order forms can be found online at the borough website of www. or picked up at borough hall during normal weekday hours from 9 am to 3 pm. Proceeds from this project will benefit the next paver project to be established at the walkway to the post office in the Wanamaker Complex. Annual Tree Lighting The borough's annual tree lighting will take place on Sunday, December 8th with a time to be determined. Check the post office or borough hall for more information as the date approaches.

30th Annual “Christmas in Island Heights” House Tour - Dec. 7th ISLAND HEIGHTS - Tickets are now on sale for the 30th annual Christmas in Island Heights House Tour and Craft shows. Hosted by the Island Heights United Methodist Church, Ocean Avenue, this holiday event will take place on Saturday, December 7th from 10 am to 4 pm. The $25 admission fee includes entrance to six unique homes in the historic borough, while two craft shows free and open to the public will run from 9 am and 4 pm at both the

church on Ocean Avenue and Island Heights Volunteer Fire Company hall on Lake Avenue. For a small fee, lunch is offered at the church from noon to 4 pm and at the firehouse from 11 am to 4 pm and includes homemade Methodist Minestrone soup, sandwiches and desserts. Breakfast is available at the church from 8 to 10:30 am at a cost of $5 for adults, $3 for children, and guests can enjoy hot beverages and homemade sweets in one of two Victorian tea-

rooms from 1 to 4 pm for $4. New this year is a 'man cave' at the church open all day for rest, relaxation and refreshments. On tour day, many points of interest borough-wide also open their doors, including the Cottage Museum on Simpson Avenue, the John F. Peto Studio Museum - currently showing a National Juried Trompe l'oeil Exhibition - with a $10 admission fee, the Ludlow Thorston Gallery on Central Avenue, the Ocean County Artists' Guild on Chestnut Avenue, the Island Heights Library on Summit Avenue and St. Gertrude's Roman Catholic Church on the corner of Ocean and Central avenues. A candlelight service will begin the weekend festivities on Friday, December 6th at 7:30 pm in the sanctuary of the church. Tickets are available for purchase at the church Monday through Thursday from 9 am to noon or at the Ludlow Thorston Gallery, Ocean County Artists' Guild, A New Corner Deli or Fast Break during normal business and visiting hours. To reserve tickets ahead of time, please e-mail Tickets will also be available on December 7th and can be purchased as early as 9 am at the firehouse. For more information, please call the church office at (732) 929-0444, e-mail or visit

Boro Library Trustees Thank Eagle Scout

ISLAND HEIGHTS - The Friends of the Island Heights Library, along with Mayor Jim Biggs and the governing body, thanked Eagle Scout candidate Brant Reymann, from Troop 29 in Toms River, at a recent council meeting for his Eagle Scout project of replacing an 31-yearold non-functioning display case adjacent the front door of the library. Brant also installed latticework beneath the new Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant ramp. Chairwoman Betsy Hyle noted that the upgrades were "terrific for the library" and added that she and the board presented the Reymann family, including Brant, his dad, Chris and mom, Kim with a scrapbook of photos taken during the project earlier this year. Photo taken at borough hall by Mr. Reymann includes (from left) Brant, Mayor Biggs and trustees Joyce Kaizar, Lynn Lenox, Claire Kalli, Patti Fusaro, Jim Muller and Mrs. Hyle.


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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013


Seasonal Reminders

Leaf Pickup Please bag leaves in standard lawn and garden bags. If possible please avoid the tie type bags and do not utilize the paper type bags. Do not overstuff bags, this makes them difficult to empty and heavy to lift, especially if leaves are mulched. Please do not tie knots in tops of bags (take the ears of the bag and make one single tie to close the top and help keep leaves dry). Knotted bags will be cut. Please place a receptacle at the curbside with your leaf bags as public works will return the bags to you in the receptacle for reuse. This will help prevent bags from blowing away. Please stack your bags for collection off of the roadway. Please follow the schedule and place your leaves out to the curbside no later than the Sunday of your scheduled collection week. We will collect each street one time during each scheduled week. Failure to place the bags out on Sunday may result in you missing the collection, which will begin first thing on the Monday morning of each scheduled week and carry through the week. We ask that you not place leaves out to the curb outside of your scheduled week to help keep the town neat and clean. This will help us keep from having debris sitting at the curbside for weeks at a time. The Borough recycling yard is open during the week from 7am to 2pm and on select Saturdays from 8am to

2pm for residents who wish to drop off leaves, brush or any other recyclable materials.

Snow Information Parking of Vehicles: There is no parking of vehicles on any borough street when snow is forecast. All vehicles must be parked in your driveway or upon the right of way area off of the paved portion of the roadway in front of your home. Please be sure to remove vehicles from the roadway prior to snowfall or as soon after snow begins as possible. Vehicles left on the roadway will be towed. Depositing of snow or ice into the street is prohibited: No person or entity shall throw, place or deposit any snow or ice into or on any street in the borough, nor upon the property of another and no owner, tenant or occupant shall cause or allow such throwing, placing or depositing snow or ice which accumulated on private property or upon vehicles into the streets of the borough. Please remove all portable basketball hoops from the side of the roadway as they inhibit snowplowing and cause safety issues. Please remember to not place your trash or recycling out for collection when snow is forecast. Please place it out the following day, after snow removal is complete. Please remember that ALL SNOW must be cleared from your vehicle before driving. It's the law. Fire hydrant by your home? Please help and clear the hydrant for emergencies.

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Recycling Cannot Be Collected in Plastic Bags Single Stream recyclables collected curbside must be placed “loose” into your recycling can. Plastic bags hamper sorting efficiency and damage processing equipment. Strict policies have been instituted to address the quality of imported recyclables, by commodity purchasers. Shipments containing plastic bags and other contaminants are deemed unmarketable and are returned to the recycling agency. Plastic Bags should be returned to local supermarkets as they are recycled by the store. Remember, place rinsed food container cans, glass bottles, and plastic bottles/ jars (the neck of the plastic being smaller than the base of the plastic), newspapers, corrugated cardboard, magazines, catalogs, junk mail, paperback books, and empty non-toxic aerosol cans ONLY, into your recycling can loose – do not place recyclables in any type of bag. Please go to for more recycling information. Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.

Christmas Tree Lighting to be Held Dec. 1st

PINE BEACH - The mayor and council here invite residents out to the annual tree lighting on Sunday, December 1st at 4:30 pm at borough hall on Pennsylvania Avenue. Santa will arrive on a fire engine and children will have an opportunity to visit him afterward inside. Refreshments will be served; there is no charge for this event.

Annual PBYC Craft Fair

The Pine Beach Yacht Club will hold its annual craft fair on Sunday, December 8th from 11 am to 3 pm at the clubhouse on Midland Avenue and Riverside Drive. Admission is free and the public is invited to come view and purchase the unique and interesting wares of vendors, win door prizes and more.

This photograph, taken on September 2nd, 1928, by Alonzo Morris Buck, represents one of hundreds of photos this early Pine Beach pioneer as he built a summer cottage for his family on the corner of New Jersey and Lincoln avenues, which stands today. Currently, the borough council and engineer are working to reconstruct damaged bulkheading west of the yacht club and the Henley Avenue pier.


PIN hol 8th Mid is fr war priz

The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013


Bathhouse to House Lifeguard Headquarters by Erik Weber

Chief Larkin Explains Changes to Route 35 Traffic Pattern by Erik Weber SEASIDE PARK - Residents and officials continue to watch closely the reconstruction project instituted shortly after summer's end on the Route 35 roadway running the length of the barrier island, and Chief Francis "Murph" Larkin recently reported on an upcoming traffic pattern change he learned about while attending a meeting with state project officials with Mayor Robert W. Matthies. In the early part of December, he stated, eastbound traffic would no longer travel from Pelican Island to Route 35 South around the "S" curve that exists today and instead would be routed to the left side of the highway that current-

ly is blocked off leading into Seaside Heights, and the right side of the highway that leads south into the curve and Seaside Park would be blocked off. Chief Larkin reported that a detour would then route traffic up to Dewey Drive at Central Avenue where drivers could then make a right at what will be a threeway directional stoplight and head south on Central Avenue through Seaside Heights to Seaside Park (or left to head to northern points on the island). He added that there was some concern over the new temporary traffic pattern as it was expected to create more vehicles traveling through an area often used by students heading to school in Seaside Heights, but that police and traffic

officials would be out monitoring the situation. The new route would remain in effect until May 15th. The chief stated that the borough was also working with Funtown Pier owner William Major to remove the current roadway fencing on Ocean Terrace that has been in place since shortly after the September 12th fire that decimated most of the gamestands, eateries, bars, ride area and restaurants there, which would open another way for residents to travel into town while avoiding potential bottlenecks on Central Avenue. Mayor Matthies confirmed that "there's going to be some rerouting that's going to be uncomfortable some times of the day."

Bass Blitz a Pleasant Surprise for Area Surf Fishermen

Don Stilton By Christine Quigley

SEASIDE PARK - After a dry spell this season, bass fishing picked up along the surf in Seaside Park down through Island Beach State Park this week. In an unusual sight, “keeper” bass, those 28 inches in length or longer. State regulations allow fishermen to catch two of these fish per day. After hauling in their two keepers on Monday, many went back Tuesday and weighed in two more. The rule of thumb this week was, if you can cast a pole into the ocean with the right fishing gear on it, you can probably catch a bass. In fact, Grumpy’s Bait and Tackle in Seaside Park said on Tuesday that his store got so busy,


Billy & Jim Cafone he couldn’t keep up with updating his followers on facebook about the blitz. “If you can fish just go,” said owner Tom Hansen. ”Don't look at the tides just put your time in.” Hansen said on Tuesday a huge body of fish had moved into the area and were feeding heavily. Don Stilton, Sr., of Guppy’s Fishing Reports a barrier island fishing website, said striped bass had been scarce this fall, but this week, everyone began catching them. On Monday, he said he had to catch about twenty of the fish before hooking a keeper after a few hours. On Tuesday, it was a different story and he was able to go home with two keepers after about one half hour fishing on Island Beach between

Jim Dishon the bathing area and the “Judge’s shack”. Many others had the same results. “If there’s any way you can get to the beach, go. This can’t last forever,” Stilton said. John Bushell Jr., of Betty and Nick’s Bait and Tackle in Seaside Park reported similar results on Tuesday. “The entire island is on fire again today on pretty much everything you throw at them,” Bushell said. “Did 20 weigh-ins already today.” Stilton added that a similar run on striped bass happened last fall and lasted about a week before it moved south towards the Barnegat Inlet for another week. Photos courtesy of Grumpy’s Bait & Tackle.

SEASIDE PARK - As this borough continues to work with the state in preparing the oceanfront for any future storms that may have the destructive power of last October's Hurricane Sandy, the temporary lifeguard stand installed adjacent the boardwalk in the line of dunes at the northern end of town will be tentatively removed with plans fast underway to renovate the bathhouse building to the west of the boardwalk for beach patrol purposes before the 2014 bathing beach season. Other uses in the renovated structure will be the selling of beach badges and a substation for the Seaside Park Police Department. Bathrooms are also slated to be moved around and rebuilt in some areas to accommodate both the public and emergency responders stationed there. "We're going to look to have the police up there for the summer," said Borough Administrator Bob Martucci. "It's a nice sized room and it'll have its own bathroom and entrance - all three are completely separate from one another." He noted that the borough was also considering

a place within the building for a vending machine or two to sell basic beverages and snacks, replacing the earlier use as a full concession area that officials stated did not ultimately work out despite the hurricane's damage. Councilwoman Gail Coleman asked where the borough was finding the money for the project. Mr. Martucci and Councilwoman Nancy Koury stated that it would be mostly funded using Federal Emergency Management Agency funds through their Hurricane Sandy response initiatives and a smaller part by the borough. Exact figures were not available as cost estimates and requests for proposals were not yet advertised, but Mrs. Coleman estimated it would cost as much as half a million dollars. "If it costs that much, we'll be scaling it back," said Mr. Martucci, adding that they were hoping it would be more toward $125,000. "We don't know what's going to happen with the boardwalk," said Mrs. Coleman, concerned over spending money on a project that includes beach badge sales and a police presence that may not be needed if tourists do

Dune Grass Planting Nov. 23rd & 24th

SEASIDE PARK - The borough is seeking volunteers to help secure its protective dune system along the oceanfront Saturday and Sunday, November 23rd and 24th, by planting dune grass from 8 am until "the cows come home," rain or shine. On Saturday, volunteers are requested to meet at the north end of town from O Street to Brighton Avenue and any beach entrance. Sunday will see planting at the south end of the borough from Brighton to 9th Avenue, again at any beach entrance. Under guidance by Pub-

lic Works Supervisor Eric Wojciechowski, department employees will be wearing yellow safety vests and on site for instruction, guidance and to answer any questions. Volunteers are asked to bring their own tools to plant, with curb pins and short, pointed broom sticks working best. Participants should enter dune areas only a designated entrances marked with an orange cone placed on both the beach and boardwalk side. Please do not damage the fencing present in any way. Planting priority is for the east side of dune ar-

not solicit Seaside Park as heavily as in past years due to the absent boardwalk amusements and pedestrian access to the remaining portions of the boardwalk in Seaside Heights. "I'm not worried about the seasonal [badge sales], I'm worried about the dailies." "We've got to get it moving," warned Mayor Robert W. Matthies. "If we don't start in the next month or two, we're not going to have it," confirmed Mr. Martucci. "I'm concerned about what's going to happen next year - it's weighing on a lot of our constituents' minds," continued Mrs. Coleman, adding that the lost municipal tax base would add negative financial impact to the drop in tourists, including "silly violators of our borough ordinances" that help bring in funds through the summer. Ms. Koury emphasized that the governing body would have to support the current plan or come up with an alternate plan for the lifeguards either way, and Mayor Matthies asked Mr. Martucci to collect cost estimates and forward them to the governing body when available.

eas, dune crowns, beach entrances and other areas void of grass. Volunteers are asked to absolutely not step on or trample any plants present at the sites and parents, chaperones and group leaders are asked to please keep an eye on children helping in the effort. No dunegrass should be planted within ten feet of the boardwalk, pavilion or roadway as this is a maintenance area purposely kept clear. Plantings should also not occur on any extremely steep areas. When planting, put two to three plants in each hole approximately six to eight inches deep, or about half the length of the plant, and about one foot apart in staggered rows. Though it likely will be too cold to imagine anyone wanting to take socks and shoes off, no bare feet are permitted due to the potential hazard for debris remaining in the dune areas. Photo depicting dune grass planting effort earlier this month courtesy borough resident Bob Hopkins.

Community Calendar PBA Toy Drive Seaside Park Police PBA 182 is holding a Christmas toy drive until Friday, December 20th at 4pm. All toys will be donated to the Division of Child Protection and Permanency, Ocean County north and south offices. Residents are asked to help the PBA make a child's holiday season a little brighter by dropping off a new unwrapped toy to the borough police department on Central Avenue or borough hall on North Ocean Avenue. Any inquiries can call (732)793-7737 x248 or 230. Book Club The Seaside Park Book Club invites all interested

parties to come to the next meeting on Wednesday, December 4th at 1 pm in the community room at borough hall. Pick up this month's book and check out what's new with the club! Light refreshments will be served. For more information, please contact the Seaside Park Recreation Department at (732) 793-3700 x105. Recreation Center Hours The Recreation Center on J Street next to the TriBoro First Aid Squad is open to children in grades 1st through 8th on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5 to 8 pm. Mahjong Group The borough is currently seeking to start an after-

noon Mahjong group. Anybody interested is asked to call the Recreation Department at (732) 793-3700 x105 for more information. Holiday Badge Sales There's no better holiday gift than one of warmth, sun and sand! Purchase a Commemorative 2014 Seasonal Beach Badge available at borough hall at a cost of $52 or $22 for seniors until sold out. Each Holiday Badge entitles the bearer to one 2014 beach badge in May. Customers keep both the holiday badge and official 2014 beach badge at time of redemption. Cash or instate check accepted (the latter with a valid driver's license and phone number).

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SPORTS The Wait is Over for TR South by Art Gordon Shore Sports Network TOMS RIVER - In picking up its first state playoff win in 10 years on Saturday, Toms River South relied on a tried-and-true formula. “Run the ball and stop the run,’’ Toms River South head coach Ron Signorino Jr. said. The second-seeded Indians knocked off seventh-seeded Moorestown 35-21 at Detwiler Stadium behind a brilliant game by junior quarterback Tymere Berry and an overall dominating run game. The Indians (7-2) will now host sixth-seeded Shawnee (6-3) in the South Jersey Group IV semifinals in a bid to reach their first sectional final since 1998. “Week in and week out our gameplan is to run the football and that’s what we do best,’’ Signorino said. “We don’t change up too much, we just want to run it at you.”

The Indians used a punishing defense and an explosive ground game to help erase a decade-long drought of success in the playoffs. They rushed for 371 yards on 50 attempts, with Berry leading the way with a career-high 213 yards on 22 carries and senior running back Otis Kearney Jr. chipping in with 110 yards on 18 carries. The defense took control of the game in the second half, keeping the Quakers off the scoreboard until 41 seconds remained in the game as the Indians pulled away after being tied at 14 at halftime. “Our gameplan coming in was to stop the run because they were a lot like us,” said senior captain Billy Kosh. “We knew coming in that we were not going to ‘out-athlete’ them like we have done a few times this year. We knew we had to out-execute them.” Koss was all over the field, playing every snap of the

game. On offense he lined up at slot back, defensively he set up at outside linebacker, and also was the holder on extra points as well as a kick returner and punt returner. “I’m a team guy,’’ he said. “I just want to contribute whatever way I can.” Kosh’s 11-yard punt return to Moorestown’s 22-yard line set up Toms River South’s first score, as the Indians took a 7-0 lead three plays later on a 2-yard touchdown run by junior running back Khaleel Greene. Moorestown tied it up with less than a minute left in the first quarter on a 74yard Mike DeMarino touchdown pass to Dallas Clark. The Quakers (4-6) then took the lead on their next possession after an unsuccessful fake field goal play by Toms River South. Junior running back Anthony Williamson capped a three-play, 72-yard drive, taking a counter play 54

yards for a touchdown for a 14-7 lead three minutes into the second quarter. With four minutes left until halftime, Berry decided to put on a clinic. Up to that point, he only had 25 yards on five carries, but drove the Indians 67 yards in eight plays in their read option offensive scheme. He carried five times for 50 yards, tying the score on 9-yard run with just under two minutes left in the half. “Eighty percent of our offense is reads by Tymere,’’ Signorino said. “We want the ball in his hands. He’s the guy out there.” “We want everything to look like a read,’’ Berry said. “I have checks at the line on every play.” Midway through the third quarter, Toms River South took the lead for good on a drive set up by a 16-yard punt return by Kosh. The Indians needed only three plays to navigate 54 yards, with Berry taking it in the last 38 yards halfway through the third quarter for a 21-14 advantage. They extended the lead with just under five minutes left in the game when they took advantage of an interception by senior Joe Berlinski off a tip by Darrius Hart. The Indians drove 30 yards, with Kearney scoring from 11 yards out for a 28-14 lead. Hart then put the exclamation point on the win when he returned an interception 30 yards for a touchdown and a 35-14 lead. The Quakers closed to 35-21 when DeMarino hit Austin Haynes from five yards out, but Kosh recovered the ensuing onside kick to kick off a celebration 10 years in the making. “We’re just happy to be playing meaningful games right now,’’ Signorino said. Photo by Erik Weber for the Ocean Signal.


NORTHFIELD, MA-The Ocean County Women’s Cross Country team won the 2013 NJCAA Division III Cross Country championship on November 9th. The women placed first in a pool of 130 runners from 17 different colleges. They edged out Gloucester CC,who finished in second place. OCC’s Elizabeth Kowalski led the Vikings to the championship with a 20:15.89 5k race and her first place finish made her this year’s national cham-

pion. The Men’s team finished second behind Harper College. Coach Eddie Baynes was given “Coach of the Year” honors while Ms. Kowalski made 1st Team All-American. Meghie Weinberger received All-American Honorable Mention, Keith Charette placed 3rd overall and was 1st Team All American. Kevin Charette was named 2nd Team All-American. OCC also won the Gary Moore Best Overall Program award.

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by Liz Matakevich Shore Sports Network TOMS RIVER – Toms River South junior forward Taylor Troutman has come up huge for her team all year with a team-high 27 goals prior to Thursday, but none of those had as much significance as her goal to tie Thursday’s NJSIAA South Jersey Group III final against Central Regional. Troutman’s 28th goal of the season pulled the Indians even in the 55th minute and the junior set up the winning goal by freshman Katie Hammack in the 72nd minute to lead Toms River South to a 2-1, comeback victory over Central. The victory gives Toms

River South its first sectional championship since its back-to-back titles in 2001 and 2002. Toms River South will move on to play in the Group III semifinals against Central Jersey champion Somerville, which defeated Wall in penalty kicks. With her team down a goal in the second half, Troutman charged through a Central defender on the left side of the net in the 55th minute and blasted a shot that flew past Central goalkeeper Lindsey Mahnkin into the top right corner of the net to tie the game, 1-1. Freshman Katie Hammack got her opportunity in the 72nd minute when she made her way in front of the net to receive a pass

The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013


High Football Teams Advance in Playoffs By Scott Stump Shore News Network Central Jersey Group IV Brick 35, West Windsor North 26 Junior running back Ray Fattaruso ran for three touchdowns, two of seven yards and one 14-yarder, junior quarterback Carmen Sclafani added a 10yard touchdown run after missing two games with a shoulder injury, and Ja’Quez Johnson had a 35yard interception return for a touchdown as the Green Dragons (7-3) won their first state playoff game since 2000 by rallying from a 20-14 halftime deficit to beat the Knights (3-7). Brick will host fifth-seeded Burlington Township in the semifinals next week in a bid to reach its first sectional final since 1994. South Jersey Group IV (2) Toms River South 35, (7) Moorestown 21 Junior quarterback Tymere Berry ran for a pair of touchdowns as the Indians (7-2) pulled away from the Quakers (4-6) to reach the semifinals, where they will host sixth-seeded Shawnee. Junior running back Khaleel Greene added a 2-yard touchdown run, senior Otis Kearney had an 11-yard rushing touchdown, and senior defensive back Darrius Hart returned an interception 30 yards for a touchdown as the Indians outscored Moorestown 21-7 in the second half. Central Jersey Group III Lakewood 20, Delran 12 A three-yard run by junior Chapelle Cook with 10 seconds left in the game snapped a 12-12 tie and sent the Piners (6-3) to an upset win over the Bears (7-2) for their first state playoff victory since 1986 and just the third in school history. Lakewood will travel to second-seeded Weequahic (9-0) for the semifinals next week. Lakewood rallied from a 12-0 deficit to tie the game on a 15-yard touchdown pass from Narquese Joshua to Eric Segui and a 10-yard touchdown run by Amir Tyler. Cook ran for 115 yards on 14 carries in the win. South Jersey Group V Jackson Memorial 24, Rancocas Valley 21 The Jaguars (7-2) won their first state playoff game since 2006 as the from Troutman. Hammack launched a ground shot into the left corner to give the Indians a 2-1 lead. Defender Delaney Savacool made a huge stop to preserve the Indians’ 2-1 lead in the 74th minute as Central’s Erin Trapp found herself in front of the net with only Toms River South freshman goalie Taylor Dean standing between her and a late equalizer. As

defense registered five interceptions, two by sophomore Kyle Johnson, senior tailback Khani Glover ran for a pair of scores and kicker Jared Calhoun booted his second game-winning field goal in two games to beat the Red Devils (5-4). Calhoun hit a 28-yard field goal with 50 seconds left in the game to snap a 21-21 tie and give Jackson Memorial the win. The Jaguars will travel to second-seeded Cherokee for the semifinals next week. Glover had touchdown runs of one and 66 yards, and senior running back Ken Bradley added a 50yard touchdown run. Central Jersey Group IV Manalapan 14, Brick Memorial 13 The Braves (9-0) pulled out a dramatic comeback win on a one-yard touchdown run by senior tailback Tyler Leonetti that tied the game as time expired in regulation before junior kicker Mike Caggiano’s game-winning extra point to rally and defeat the Mustangs (6-4). Manalapan will host Sayreville, which beat Monroe 35-34, in next week’s semifinals. The Bombers beat Manalapan for the Central Jersey Group IV title in 2011 and have won three straight sectional titles. Brick Memorial led 13-0 heading into the third quarter, becoming the first team to lead Manalapan at the half all season, thanks to an 88-yard touchdown run by senior running back Mike Basile and a 9-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Rob Triano to wideout Karl Kumm. The Braves cut the lead to 13-7 on a 4-yard touchdown run by junior tailback Imamu Mayfield with 3:54 left in the game. The defense came up with a stop to set up the game-winning drive. Trapp cranked her leg back to get a shot off, Savacool ran up and blocked the shot from behind to stop the Golden Eagles’ last big chance to tie it. Central struck first in the 46th minute, taking advantage of back-to-back corner kicks. The first corner by Elizabeth Kroon was knocked out of bounds by Dean, giving the Golden Eagles a second chance.


The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

New OCC Athletic Hall of Fame Inductees

by Kevin Williams Shore Sports Network, Townsquare Media NJ TOMS RIVER - For 1978 graduate Michael Kavanagh it was first time back in the building where he used to be a standout basketball player for the Vikings after graduating from Point Boro High School. Kavanagh was both a team MVP and Student Athlete of the Year and is now a trial attorney for GEICO Insurance and lives in Manasquan with his family. The other two athletes honored are a bit more contemporary as Beachwood resident Mary Bellezza Gibson starred on the basketball court in 1997 & 98 after graduating from Toms River North. Gibson was a 2nd team All-American while at O.C.C. and today works as a Municipal Alliance Coordinator for the Ocean County Health Department and is an adjunct professor at Richard Stockton College. Karen Geiger Trump was deserving of a spot in the Hall of Fame as both an athlete and coach and is truly one of the Vikings all-time


greats. She earned numerous honors on both the soccer field and basketball court from 1997-99 after an outstanding career at Toms River South. Later Trump would return to O.C.C as a coach of both sports and four times was named Region 19 Coach of the Year. Joining the trio as honorees were a pair of contributors who are fixtures at Vikings basketball games. Bob Czarniewski has operated the scoreboard since 1972 and also contributed to the college’s swimming program. A former soccer coach at Toms River East, “Cz” has taught physical education at Island Heights Elementary School for 40 years. Dom Alagia is the voice of Vikings basketball, handling the public address chores for both the men’s and women’s team for some 20 years. As I have for all the previous Hall of Fame ceremonies I served as Master of Ceremonies. The evening also saw the National Champion O.C.C. Women’s Cross Country Team honored. Manchester Township High School baseball

standout Devin Tomei will be headed to Blues Creek, North Carolina in late summer after signing a letter-of-intent to attend Campbell University on a baseball scholarship. The 6’3, 190 pound right-handed pitcher and first baseman who bats lefty signed his scholarship offer at the high school yesterday. A strong student with a 3.7 GPA, Tomei is also the quarterback on the Hawks football team. Campbell went 49-10 last season and won the Big South regular-season baseball championship. Photo by Kevin Williams. w w w. shore s p or t s ne t

Shore Orthopaedic To Open New Headquarters Press Release by Shore Orthopaedics Architects Michael Graves & Associates (MGA), in collaboration with Shore Orthopaedic doctors and Scarborough Properties, announce the completion of the headquarters and medical office building for Shore Orthopaedic University Associates in Somers Point, New Jersey. The 10,300 square foot newly constructed facility utilizes a “Patient First” design approach based on “Lean Design Principles” (LDP). The new clinic houses exam rooms, x-ray imaging services, offices, public lobby and waiting room, staff lounge, physical therapy facility, medical offices, conference space and an outdoor relaxation garden. MGA designed the entire project from strategic planning, architecture and interior design, to furniture, graphic

design, company branding, website and marketing graphics. LDP are focused on the process of continuous improvement based upon a careful examination of an organization’s current method of operations. The goal is to create environments that eliminate waste, optimize the practice’s efficiency and enhance the patient experience. “We were able to improve the patient experience and streamline daily operations making treatment more cost effective, faster and focused. The facility also features built-in flexibility for future changes and growth”, said James Wisniewski, Senior Associate at MGA. Designing from a patient’s perspective, MGA drew upon our wide experience in architectural as well as industrial (product) design. They were able to clearly define patient

and staff areas to be as flexible, rational and easy to understand for patients, doctors and staff. Natural light and controlled views to the outside are an important element of the design. The waiting area and the patient route to the clinical modules take advantage of the light and views, as do the administrative areas and the staff lounge. Borrowed light into the exam rooms and offices, as well as glazed doors further support the connection to the outside. The reception area and lobby, which accommodates a large seating lounge and administrative stations that exceed HIPAA standards for privacy, have been designed to visibly identify the intake stations directly in front of the entrance and the exit stations on the path from the exam and consult rooms. The waiting area is informal with a strong

indoor/outdoor connection to the relaxation garden. The physical therapy area includes support spaces, such as a whirlpool, laundry, sink, and storage cabinets. All corridors are a minimum of 5 feet wide throughout the entire complex, allowing for accessible movement throughout the building for patients, doctors and support staff. The project was executed as Integrated Project Delivery, where the architect closely coordinated the development of the design with the developer, user, engineering sub- consultants and the general contractor. This process included performing comparative cost and schedule analysis for systems and materials and identifying portions of the work that could be fast tracked. The project utilized a design-build construction manager project delivery format, in order to accommodate a six-month construction schedule.

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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013

P OLICE B LOTTER Area Police Departments Turn to Social Media to Solve Crime

Editorial by Phil Stilton, Digital Media Editor

Community Policing Reinvented on Social Media TOMS RIVER- In 2010, JTOWN Magazine, a community publication in Jackson Township with a large social media following began working with the Jackson Police Department to coordinate the department news alerts with the publication’s Facebook page. At the time, Sgt. Christopher Parise told me that the local newspapers just weren’t interested in running police stories in their papers unless the content was of high profile crimes. Parise said his department had even gone into a spell where they stopped expending resources on notifying the media because the releases were not getting press time and staffing shortages prohibited the activity. Within a few weeks , the JTOWN Magazine police blotter became an instant hit with residents of the township, eager to learn what was going on in their town, but was not being reported in the newspapers. Police Blotters in newspapers were nothing uncommon at the time, but in Ocean County, there was little to no police presence on facebook or social media. The experiment was a success. Community awareness in the township soared. Soon after, the Jackson Township Police Department launched their own facebook page in August of 2011. Other departments followed suit over the next year. 2012 saw other local police departments

follow suit, creating social media pages. In April, the Berkeley Police Department launched their facebook page, followed a month later by Manchester Township. One problem existed. The information network was fractured. While each town had their own police information page, there was nothing in place to link them together.

Connecting Departments As a news editor, I soon realized that crimes in one town were frequently being committed by residents of another town and thought of a way to link the communities together to cross pollinate police blotter pages. In August of 2012, the “Ocean County Police Blotter” facebook page was launched as a collaborative effort between the Ocean Signal and local police departments to reach readers through social media. Within two weeks, the page had 12,000 followers through our aggressive marketing efforts both in our publications and on line.

Sandy’s Impact on Social Media Soon after, Hurricane Sandy struck and the Ocean County Police Blotter, running from the Ocean Signal office in Jackson Township on generator power stayed in contact with many township police departments and local OEM officials. Cell phones were the only connection many had to the outside world and facebook became the application of choice. We made the connections between official law enforcement agencies and the people affected by the storm.

In months after Hurricane Sandy, the Ocean County Police Blotter facebook page grew to over 20,000 followers, reaching nearly 3,000,000 people between October 28th and December 31st. Although the initial effort was to both inform residents about what goes on in their neighborhoods and to strengthen the relationship between the police department and the community, it became a primary means of information dissemination to many had no power, no cable television and relied on their smart phones. “Social media is the best way for the police department and for that matter, the Township, to broadcast and receive immediate responses from the public to ongoing and current situations,” said Captain Robert Mazza of the Brick Township Police Department. “This was evident during Super Storm Sandy. A majority of our residents didn’t have power, land line telephone, cable, or unfortunately homes. “

Post-Sandy Growth As the area began to recover from Sandy, we went back into “police blotter” mode around January and the page now has over 40,000 followers. Social media, including department operated pages and the OCPB page has been helping local police departments solve crimes of all sizes and types. Other agencies launched pages in 2013, including the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office and the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department.

Using Social Media to Solve Crime

Toms River Police Chief and Ocean County Sheriff-Elect Michael Mastronardy is one person who embraces an open door policy with the local news media and understands the power of social media as a crime solving tool. “The local media helps us get the information out on their pages and it has helped us tremendously,” Mastronardy said of services like the Ocean County Police Blotter. “It has helped us return stolen property, identify suspects and solved crimes.” On November 14th, Mastronardy said his office received numerous calls from a photo released by his department and published by the Ocean Signal. “Within an hour of the posting, we had numerous phone calls that helped us identify two suspects who stole a mannequin dog from the Ocean County Mall,” Mastronardy said. His department was able to solve the crime and identify suspects long before the morning when the story was published in newspapers and other on line services. In Jackson, one of the departments who lead the charge into social media, the new platform has been instrumental in finding missing persons, identifying suspects from video footage and alerting the community of pattern based crimes, such as concentrations of burglaries and vehicle break-ins targeting specific neighborhoods “The community response to our efforts has been overwhelmingly positive,” said Lt. Steven Laskiewicz. “Through putting out more news releases and information in a patrol blotter type format that is posted on the department’s Facebook page as well as others such as the Ocean County Police Blotter, residents can be made aware of the types of incidents our officers respond to and deal with.”

In one incident the Jackson Police Department as able to solve a crime fifteen minutes after it was posted to their facebook page. A man who stole a juvenile diabetes donation jar was identified in minutes by a police officer in another town. “There have been numerous occasions where we have posted information regarding a crimes that occurred and where we have pictures and video,” Captain Mazza said. “These postings have resulted in hundreds of phone calls, numerous leads, and subsequently the identification and arrest of the suspects.” In one case in Brick in August, Brick police were investigating a purse snatching at the Shop-Rite from an elderly woman. “The video and still photographs were placed on our social media accounts,” he said. “The detective bureau received many follow up phone calls which ultimately helped us in identifying the suspect. The suspect was subsequently arrested and charged for that crime.”

Police Presence Welcomed by Towns Police said the public in their communities have fully embraced their facebook and social media initiatives. In Jackson, over 7,000 residents follow the police department’s facebook page. While Toms River has no facebook page, Chief Mastronardy ensures that the local news media has daily updates about crime in his town to share with their

readers on line as events unfold. “It’s not that we don’t want to start a facebook page in Toms River, it’s that right now we do not have the manpower to manage it,” Mastronardy said. The short-staffed police department for now relies on the media to carry the message, but that could change in the near future. Lt. Laskiewicz said facebook has given residents a broader awareness of policing in his town. “There have been many comments by people who never realized that these types of incidents were happening in the town they live in,” he said. “It has helped many understand why there may be times when calls are placed to the department, and there may be longer response times as the officers are dealing with other incidents or calls for service.” “The community has been extremely supportive of our social media efforts,” said Captain Mazza. “Reaching out to the community with social media has opened the lines of communication between the citizens and the police department. This open dialogue has become an excellent way for the citizen to ask questions, make comments, and a lot of times, compliment our officers for the job they do.” You can get daily updates from most police departments in Ocean County on their individual facebook pages or you can see a summary of incidents from across the county each day on the Ocean Signal’s Ocean County Police Blotter page.


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The Ocean Signal | November 22nd - December 5th, 2013


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Ocean Signal - November 22nd, 2013 - Vol. 1 Issue 15  
Ocean Signal - November 22nd, 2013 - Vol. 1 Issue 15  

The fifteenth edition of the Ocean Signal, this digital version of the print edition is a complement to the online news source, www.OceanCou...