MAYOR DUCEY TO ATTEND SCHOOL FUNDING PROTEST IN TRENTON

Mayor John G. Ducey will be joining Brick school officials at the March On Trenton on Tuesday, March 5 to protest millions of dollars in school aid being taken from the Brick Township School District as a result of the School Funding Reform Act

“The state aid cuts are having a severe negative impact on our schools and on our community,” said Mayor Ducey.  “If they are allowed to continue, these cuts are going to result in higher taxes, staff cuts, larger class sizes and the likely elimination of clubs and athletic programs. This is devastating for our students and outrageously unfair. This could lead to families leaving Brick for school districts that weren’t impacted by the School Funding Reform Act.”

The Brick School District has already lost approximately $1.9 million in state aid and is anticipating an additional cut of $2.8 million for the 2019-2020 year – a cumulative loss of $4.7 million. The District anticipates a cumulative loss of $23 million over 6 years.

“This is completely unacceptable. It is no wonder that people are so angry with our leaders in Trenton,” said Mayor Ducey.

The March On Trenton is being timed to coincide with Governor Murphy’s annual budget address. Mayor Ducey will join thousands of people from throughout the state who are part of the Support Our Students (S.O.S) Coalition. S.O.S represents 71 districts affected by the new state aid rules.

Buses have been arranged for the March and they will depart from the former Foodtown site on Route 70 at 11:30am on March 5. Anyone wishing to ride the bus should contact the Brick Schools to inquire about availability or visit their website at www.brickschools.org.  Anyone wishing to attend and drive themselves is being encouraged to be at Trenton by 1pm

Mayor Ducey encourages all citizens to make their voices heard by contacting Governor Murphy and state legislators about restoring our state aid by writing letters, sending emails, calling them and reaching out on social media.

 

MAYOR ANNOUNCES SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITY FOR HIGH SCHOOL JUNIORS AND SENIORS

Mayor John G. Ducey would like to inform high school juniors and seniors in Brick Township about a scholarship opportunity offered by the New Jersey State League of Municipalities. The League is offering three $1,000 scholarships through the Louis Bay 2nd Future Municipal Leaders Scholarship Competition. The statewide competition centers on the theme “What My Municipal Government Does Best” and seeks to advance the virtues of elected members of municipal government.

“Brick Township has many exceptional young students. I encourage all juniors and seniors to participate in this scholarship competition and show just how exceptional, talented and dedicated the young people of our community are,” said Mayor Ducey.

Applicants will be required to write an essay of approximately 500 words with the theme “What My Municipal Government Does Best.” The essay should be based on the applicant’s perceptions and experiences with your municipality’s local government and should consider the public contribution of the municipal government. Judging is based solely on the essay including originality, technical composition and appropriateness and effective articulation of theme.

Students wishing to apply for the scholarship competition can download the 2019 NJSLOM Scholarship Application Packet. If you would like to request an application by email, please send an email to emoroney@twp.brick.nj.us.

The scholarship is open to all high school juniors and seniors. Residents who live in Brick but attend schools in other communities should return their application to Mayor Ducey’s office.

A committee will select one essay from Brick Township as a semi-finalist. That application will be forwarded and reviewed by the NJSLOM Scholarship Committee. That committee will select 15 finalists and 3 winners. The winners will each receive a $1,000 scholarship and their essay will be featured in New Jersey Municipalities Magazine.

All applications must be returned to Mayor Ducey’s office by March 11, 2019. Completed applications should be mailed to Mayor John Ducey, Attention: NJSLOM Scholarship, 401 Chambers Bridge Road, Brick, NJ, 08723.

MAYOR AND COUNCIL LOOKING FOR CANDIDATES FOR HOUSING AUTHORITY BOARD

Mayor Ducey and the Township Council are seeking residents interested in serving on the Board of Commissioners of the Brick Township Housing Authority.

The Brick Township Housing Authority is an autonomous authority whose primary mission is to provide decent, safe and sanitary housing to low-income residents of Brick Township. The Housing Authority is federally funded and provides assistance to residents via the Public Housing Program and the Housing Choice Voucher Program.

“The Housing Authority serves some of the most vulnerable people of our community and as such, we are seeking residents who are compassionate and have a desire to make a positive difference in people’s lives,” said Mayor Ducey.

Members of the Housing Authority are appointed by the Mayor, the Township Council and the Governor. The Board meets on the last Monday of each month.

Interested citizens should forward their resume accompanied by a cover letter to Mayor Ducey by the end of business on Friday, February 8. Resumes and cover letters can be emailed to mayor@bricktownship.net or mailed to Mayor John G. Ducey, 401 Chambers Bridge Road, Brick, NJ, 08723.

TOWNSHIP SUPPORTS LOCAL SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS

Mayor John G. Ducey and the Township Council presented checks to representatives of local service providers at the December 18, 2018 Council meeting.  The checks, which range from $1,000 to $8,000, are from funding the Township receives as part of the U.S. Housing and Urban Development Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)–Public Services Program  The checks will assist the organizations in providing a wide variety of services to the public in our community.

Every year, the Township receives grant money from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Community Development Block Grant program which is in turn passed on to local service providers.   The Township identifies issues of concern in the community and then provides the Federal funds to the organizations most appropriate to address those issues.  This year, the Township granted a total of $44,400 to these organizations. The Township also administers Housing Rehabilitation Projects and Public Infrastructure improvements through funding received from the CDBG Program annually.

The CDBG program has been providing communities with these funds since it began in 1974.

“I cannot understate the importance of the organizations that we are awarding these funds to tonight. These groups are in the community every day making a difference in people’s lives,” said Mayor Ducey. “We are proud and honored and support them in their missions.”

The CDBG Check recipients are:

  • Church of the Epiphany, St. Vincent DePaul Society – Volunteers provide counseling to those in need to manage housing expenses and provide financial assistance to cover food, clothing, utilities and rent. For more information please call 732-458-0220.
  • Community Services, Inc. of Ocean County/Meals on Wheels – Through its ‘Meals on Wheels’ program, Community Services Inc. provides nutritious meals to homebound elderly in their own homes. The program also serves meals daily to seniors at the Brick Township Senior Center on Adamston Road.   For more information, please call 732-367-1400 or the Brick Senior Center at 732-920-8686.
  • Church of the Visitation – The Church of the Visitation on Mantoloking Road hosts a community lunch on the third Wednesday of each month. Lunches are free and available from 12pm-1pm. For more information call 732-255-2835.
  • CONTACT of Ocean and Monmouth Counties – CONTACT of Ocean & Monmouth Counties is a non-profit, charitable organization that provides trained telephone listeners who respond to human needs 24-hours a day. They offer free confidential crisis intervention, information on available resources and referral to community services. For more information call 732-240-6104. Their crisis hotline can be reached at 732-240-6100 or 609-693-5834.
  • Dottie’s House – Dottie’s House provides transitional housing for victims of domestic violence and their children. These grant funds will help offset the operating costs for the transitional housing facility. They may be reached at 732-295-7380.
  • Interfaith Hospitality Network of Ocean County – There are times when families face becoming homeless because of personal, financial or medical reasons. Interfaith Homeless Assistance provides a safety net program for Brick Township residents who face becoming homeless. They may be reached at 732-736-1550.
  • Ocean’s Harbor House – Ocean’s Harbor House provides free short-term shelter and crisis intervention for male and female youth ages 10-17. Any youth who is homeless, has runaway, been thrown away or abused, or is otherwise in need of immediate intervention may find help 24 hours a day at this safe haven.   Their Shelter Services 24 Hours/Day Hotline is 732-929-0660 and their Outreach Center phone number is 732-929-0096.
  • Providence House – A division of Catholic Charities, Providence House provides a wide variety of services related to preventing domestic violence and assisting its victims.   For many years, the Township has worked with Providence House to fight domestic violence in our community. Providence House may be reached at 732-350-2120.
  • The Arc, Ocean County Chapter – The Arc, Ocean County Chapter advocates for, provides supports and empowers children and adults with developmental disabilities and their families, ensuring they are accepted and valued as citizens of our community.  The Arc does this through vocational, recreational, family support, residential, transportation and primary medical care programs. Their phone number is 732-363-3335 ext. 115.
  • Caregiver Volunteers of Central Jersey – Caregiver Volunteers of Central Jersey is a non-profit interfaith organization that provides volunteers to assist frail elderly with simple daily tasks enabling them to live, with dignity, where they are most comfortable – in their own homes. And there is never a charge for help provided! Their phone number is 732-505-2273.
  • Jersey Shore Council Boy Scouts of America – Jersey Shore Council, Boy Scouts of America, headquartered in Toms River, serves more than 6,000 young people in four Jersey Shore counties: Atlantic, Ocean, Southeast Burlington and Ocean City in Cape May County. It is among the largest youth serving organizations in the state of New Jersey led by approximately 2,000 volunteers. For more information call 732-349-1037.
  • STEPS – STEPS (Solutions to End Poverty Soon) works to solve the problems of poverty including lack of affordable housing, food instability, access to health care and decent wages. For more information call 732-367-1640.

Brick Township’s CDBG Program is administered by the Township’s Land Use Office and Township Planner Tara Paxton. Groups wanting more information on how to apply for CDBG funding from the township can call 732-262-1039.

 

MAYOR SEEKS CITIZENS INTERESTED IN SERVING ON BOARDS AND COMMITTEES

Any citizen interested on serving as a member on one of the township’s various boards or committees should send an email with a resume and cover letter to Mayor John Ducey before or on Thursday, January 3.

“These boards not only play an important role in shaping our community, they offer citizens the opportunity to give back and help move Brick Township forward,” said Mayor Ducey. “I encourage any person interested in serving our community to send their resume to my office this week. Every person will be considered and we will make every effort to make sure everyone who would like to serve has the opportunity to do so.”

There are upcoming appointments available for the following boards/committees:

  • Environmental Commission – is responsible for the protection, development and use of natural resources, including water resources located within the township.
  • Historic Preservation Commission – works to encourage the use, restoration and preservation of historic structures in Brick Township.
  • Board of Adjustment – primary function is to review and decide on applications for a variance.
  • Property Maintenance Board – works to determine the course of action owners of property’s deemed in violation of the Property Maintenance Code must take in regards to the rehabilitation of their properties.
  • BMAC – mission is to provide substance abuse prevention programs and services for the community.

“Anyone interested in serving should send their resume with a cover letter by January 3 to make sure they are considered,” said Mayor Ducey.

Resumes and cover letters should be emailed to mayor@twp.brick.nj.us no later than 5pm on January 3. While efforts will be made to place citizens on requested boards, it will not be possible in all instances due to availability.

VETERANS CAN GO TO THE BEACH FOR FREE IN BRICK TOWNSHIP

The Township Council recently passed an ordinance that will permit all veterans of the United States Armed Forces to enjoy all of Brick Township beaches for free.

“The Council and I have a great appreciation for the service of our veterans and we are proud to be able to offer this small token of our appreciation to them,” said Mayor John G. Ducey. “I will enthusiastically sign this ordinance the moment it reaches my desk and make this the law in Brick Township. I thank Council President deJong and the Council for giving me that opportunity.”

Any veteran of the Armed Forces, including the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard, will be exempt from daily beach badge fees for the township’s three ocean beaches and Windward Beach. Veterans will have to show their DD214 paperwork at the beach to be exempted from the daily badge fee. Veterans do not have to be Brick residents to be exempted from the fee.

The township has granted free access to the beach to veterans on July 4th the past three summers.

TOWNSHIP LOOKING TO CREATE VILLAGE ZONE; ORDINANCE WILL ALSO PROHIBIT HIGH DENSITY RESIDENTIAL COMPLEXES

The Brick Township Council is one step away from passing landmark legislation that will protect the community from high-density residential development on several properties while also providing a means to improve businesses on three busy roads.

 “Over-development has been a major source of concern for many years and it has accelerated recently as our community is feeling the impact of the explosive growth of neighboring towns,” said Mayor Ducey.  “This ordinance eliminates rules that permit high-density apartment and condominium complexes on certain large tracts in Brick Township.  It also creates a Village Zone that will provide business and property owners along Herbertsville, Mantoloking and Drum Point Roads to improve their properties and in turn, the aesthetics of the community.”

 If passed, the ordinance will create a Village Zone that includes properties with frontage on Herbertsville, Mantoloking and Drum Point Roads.  Properties in the Village Zone will be permitted to have a maximum of two (2) one-family residential units in conjunction with a non-residential permitted use.

 In addition, the ordinance calls for the elimination of the current Mixed Use Overlay Zone.  This zone was created in 2007 and allowed for high-density residential and commercial development on the same lots.  The Mixed Use Overlay Zone permitted this development on four large properties in Brick Township.  These include the former Foodtown property, the Riverwalk at Brick plaza, the triangle on Route 88 and Burrsville Road and the New Visions property.

 “The only property of the four that has residential development is the property behind the Chambers Bridge Post Office known as New Visions.  While we already prevented residential development on the former Foodtown site, this ordinance will make sure that the other two properties never have residential development,” said Mayor Ducey.

 The ordinance also makes it easier for property owners to improve their homes or businesses on those roads.  The ordinance eliminates non-conforming uses on the specified properties meaning a limited number of residential units will now be allowed in the zone. This eliminates the need for homeowners and business owners to seek variances before the Board of Adjustment to complete upgrades or improvements.

The ordinance will also eliminate so called ‘split zones’ on the impacted properties.  Currently, many of these properties are split in half with a business portion and a residential portion.  This split requires variances for any type of expansion or change. The ordinance permits both residential and commercial uses on the entire lots in the Village Zone.

The ordinance will also correct zoning designations that are creating hardships for homeowners.  A number of single-family homes in the affected areas are currently located in business zones.  This ordinance will change the zoning designations of those parcels to make them conforming uses.

“This ordinance is a great thing for Brick Township.  It helps property owners along these roads and will make it easier for them to improve their properties,” said Mayor Ducey.  “At the same time, it eliminates the threat of construction of large scale apartment buildings.  I commend the Council and our Land Use staff on their work in putting this ordinance together.”

 The ordinance passed on first reading during the September 25 Council meeting.  The ordinance will be on for second reading at the October 9 Council meeting.

 

RECYCLE COACH NOW AVAILABLE TO BRICK RESIDENTS

The Township of Brick has made a tool available for residents that will assist with recycling and waste disposal. The free Recycle Coach platform is a partnership with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.

With Recycle Coach, residents can:

  • Stay organized with custom curbside collection and events calendars
  • Receive collection reminders and real-time updates on service disruptions
  • Become recycling experts with a comprehensive “What Goes Where?” search tool, including local disposal information and collection requirements for common and uncommon items
  • Take the “What Type of Recycler Are You?” quiz for useful recycling tips and tricks
  • Use the problem-reporting tool, equipped with geolocation, to notify municipal customer services about issues like missed collections

Residents can access Recycle Coach from desktop computers, mobile devices, or through digital assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Home. Officials hope the platform can help increase recycling rates and decrease contamination in the community’s recycling stream. Recycle Coach can be found on the Public Works/Recycling page on the township website. The Recycle Coach app can be downloaded wherever apps are available.

TOWNSHIP TO WAIVE PERMIT FEES FOR FLOOD VICTIMS

In an effort to assist residents whose homes were damaged by flooding caused by a massive rain storm, Mayor John G. Ducey and the Township Council are waiving the permit fees for those victims as they begin the rebuilding process.

Brick Township experienced historic-level rain on Monday, August 13. An estimated eight inches of rain fell in a short period of time causing significant flooding in the community. One of the hardest hit areas was the Greenbriar One active adult community. According to the Brick Township Building Department, over 170 homes have been identified as having been damaged in the storm as of August 28.

“The residents whose homes were damaged in the storm face a long road back. Many of those residents are senior citizens on fixed incomes. We want to help them to the best of our ability and one way we can is by waiving fees for the rebuilding of their homes,” said Mayor Ducey.

The Council will vote on a resolution at their August 28, 2018 meeting that will authorize the waiving of fees required by the Township Code and Uniform Construction Code for any home that sustained flood damage caused by the August 13 rainstorm. The fees would be waived through November 1. Waived fees will only apply to permits that are issued to repair damage sustained in the storm. Fees for permits for improvements unrelated to the storm will still be applied.

While the township fees will be waived, applicants will still be responsible for any nominal state fees. The township has no authorization to wave any required state fees.

The resolution will also authorize the refund of any permit fees paid from the date of the storm through the adoption of the resolution for homes damaged during the storm.

At the same meeting, the Council will vote on a resolution asking the New Jersey Turnpike Authority and the Ocean County Engineering Department to conduct an independent study on the August 13 storm and the impact that the recently completed Garden State Parkway had on the flooding.

“Citizens have raised legitimate questions about how much of the flooding if any was caused by the Parkway construction and widening. The worst flooding was adjacent to the Parkway and the new exits and entrances along Burrsville Road,” said Mayor Ducey. “The Turnpike Authority and County Engineering Department have an obligation to find out if the flooding was worsened by their projects and if so, what they can do to help prevent this in the future.”

TOWNSHIP BREAKS GROUND ON PARK RENOVATION

Mayor John G. Ducey will be joined by Council members, township officials and residents at the ceremonial ground breaking for the Bernie Cooke Park renovation project on Wednesday, August 15 at 9am. This will be the sixth park renovated since Mayor Ducey took office in 2014.

“The renovation of Bernie Cooke Park has been a long time coming. We are excited to finally break ground and get this project underway,” said Mayor Ducey. “We are confident that when this project is complete and the park is open to the public, it will be a very popular place for our residents.”

The ground breaking ceremony is open to all and Mayor Ducey encourages residents, particularly residents of the Parkway Pines neighborhood, to join him at there.

The renovation of Bernie Cooke Park will include a multi-purpose field with an infield for baseball/softball, a basketball court, a concrete skate park, two age appropriate playgrounds for children up to 12 years of age, a bicycle training course for young people a walking/jogging path. A new parking area will be constructed and the park will have new fencing and landscaping. The park will be ADA-compliant and accessible to all.

The cost of the renovation will be $1,613,688. The winning bid was submitted by Precise Construction of Freehold, NJ. Precise Construction previously completed the Herbertsville Park, Angela Hibbard Park and Hank Waltonowski Park renovations. CME Associates designed the park and are serving as consulting engineers on the project.

The renovated project is expected to be open in the spring.

Park and playground renovations completed under Mayor Ducey include Windward Beach playgrounds, Herbertsville Park (formerly Colorado Park), Lake Riviera Park, Angela Hibbard Park and Hank Waltonowski Park. Future renovations are slated to take place at Bayside Park and Cedar Bridge Manor Park.