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.

 

TOWNSHIP TO HONOR LOCAL HEROES ON MARCH 1

The 5th Annual Brick Hero Awards will be held on Friday, March 1 at 7pm at Brick Township High School, 346 Chambers Bridge Rd. The event honors Brick residents and businesses that exhibited a remarkable effort to make their community a better place. The event will include performances by local school theatre groups, dance schools and more.

The Brick Hero Awards are a collaborative effort between the Mayor’s Teen Advisory Councils in Brick Township High School and Brick Memorial High School. The awards event will feature performances by Evolution Dance Academy, the Brick Township High School Drama Club, Idol Time Vocal Academy and Dance Concepts. Award recipients will be presented with Brick Hero Capes.

Mayor John Ducey created the Brick Youth Initiative to give young people a greater voice in their community. Mayor Ducey meets regularly with the Teen Advisory Councils at each high school to discuss their thoughts and ideas for Brick Township. Some of those ideas that have been brought to fruition include, the Brick Township Birthday Party, Cupcake Wars and, most significantly, the design and construction of the Brick Teen Center, also known as Lounge 270.

“Our young people are a vital part of Brick Township and its future,” said Mayor Ducey. “I feel that we have an obligation to ensure that these young men and women know that their local government and community care about them, and that they’re listening to what they have to say.”

All proceeds from this year’s event will go to benefit the Brick Teen Center, Lounge 270. Tickets are $5 for students and $10 for adults, and can be purchased at the door. For more info on the event, contact Madison Baracia, Brick Youth Advisor, at mbaracia@bricktownship.net.

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.

TOWNSHIP SEEKING VENDORS AND EXHIBITORS FOR GREEN FAIR

Sustainable Brick, the Brick Township Environmental Commission, the Brick Township Recreation Department and the Brick Township Tourist Development Commission would like to invite your organization/company to have a display at our 9th Annual Brick Township Green Fair to take place on Saturday, April 13th from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

This year’s Green Fair, with its theme “Make One Change”, will be held at Brick Township High School, 346 Chambers Bridge Rd., Brick, NJ. This is an INDOOR venue. Vendors and Exhibitors: Tables and chairs are in limited supply so we prefer you to bring your own. Otherwise, requests should be made in the space below. Please indicate if you require access to electricity as well. We ask that all vendors and exhibitors strive to represent this year’s theme to the best of your ability in your exhibits, displays and interactions with the attendees. (Example: the Brick Township Environmental Commission will be promoting the “Pick Up Brick” anti-litter program)

**Please print and fill out an application and return no later than March 29 to Town Hall, Attn: Keith Rella, 401 Chambers Bridge Road, Brick, NJ 08723, or e-mail to krella@bricktownship.net Participation is limited to those businesses and organizations which promote or foster sustainability, conservation, social justice, stewardship, reduced consumption, or “green”, environmental, locally produced services and products.  All exhibitors/vendors must be set-up by 9:00 a.m. There will be volunteers present that morning to assist you.

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.

ZAPCIC CHOSEN AS COUNCIL PRESIDENT FOR 2019

At their annual reorganization meeting on January 8, the Brick Township Council selected Andrea Zapcic to serve as Council President for 2019 and Lisa Crate to serve as Vice President.

“I am honored to have been chosen by my colleagues to serve as Council President this year. This is an important year in Brick Township and we have a lot of work ahead of us. I am looking forward to working with Mayor Ducey, my colleagues and the township staff to continue to accomplish our goals and make our community better,” said Council President Zapcic.

Council President Zapcic says the top priority is to continue the fiscal responsibility of the past five years. “The municipal budget has increased roughly 3% in total over the five years I have served on Council. The five years prior to that saw growth of 25%. We have been the most fiscally conservative Council in Brick Township’s history and we plan on continuing that.”

Council President Zapcic has served on the Council since 2014 when she was appointed to the seat vacated when Mayor Ducey took office. She was victorious in a special election later that year for the remainder of the term and was re-elected for a full term in 2015. During her time on Council, President Zapcic was instrumental in the reestablishment of BMAC (Brick Municipal Anti-Drug Coalition) and has been an advocate of fiscally responsible government. She has served on the Council’s business and finance, public works, recreation, public safety, economic development, ethics and land use committees.

Council President Zapcic and her husband Bill have lived in Brick Township for 30 years and raised their two children here.

Council Vice President has served on the Council since 2016 and served as the Vice President in 2017. As a Council member she has dedicated herself to quality-of-life issues and improving the community. Council Vice President Crate has served on the land use, public works, ethics and economic development committees.

Council Vice President Crate has been a resident of Brick Township for 25 years. She is a teacher in the Jackson School District and has been honored as their Teacher of the Year. In her free time, she volunteers for Tooney’s Last Resort, a local animal rescue shelter. Council Vice President Crate, her husband and two children are also active members of the Church of the Epiphany.

“Council President Zapcic and Council Vice President Crate are both outstanding people who are committed to serving Brick Township. I am looking forward to working with them and their colleagues to continue the work we have done over the past five years,” said Mayor Ducey.

BMAC OFFERS SPORT SATURDAY PROGRAM FOR YOUNG ATHLETES

The Brick Municipal Anti-Drug Coalition (BMAC) is proud to once again offer the Sport Saturday program for township boys and girls ages 9 through 12. The program offers young athletes 90 minute training sessions designed to help them achieve their personal best physically, mentally and emotionally in both sports and life.

Sport Saturday sessions are available every Saturday from January 5 through April 13 at the Brick Civic Plaza. Sessions are at either 8:30am or 10:30am. The program is free for participants. Parents can register their children for one or more sessions. There is a limit of 30 children at each session.

Each Sport Saturday training session is 90 minutes. Sport Saturday provides enhancement of general fitness levels, sports specific training, and the importance of leadership qualities, problem solving and character development designed to help youth increase self-esteem, awareness and resiliency as substance use prevention strategies.

“We reinstated BMAC so that we could provide the young people of Brick Township with programs like Sport Saturday,” said Mayor John G. Ducey. “This program will not only help young people improve their athletic abilities, it will give them tools to help them become better people.”

Trainers are provided by Mentor Academy of New Jersey and are certified physical education teachers as well as youth sports trainers.

Councilwoman Andrea Zapcic says programs like this are important in the fight against opioid addiction. “The drive towards more professionalism in youth sports has caused an increase in over-use related orthopedic injuries in children ages 12 and up. Evidence suggests that a youth’s first exposure to a prescription opiate is often for treatment of injury or post-operative pain,” said Councilwoman Zapcic.

Councilwoman Zapcic adds that studies show youth exposed to opiates (prescribed) before high school graduation have a 33% increased risk of using opiates recreationally in the years after graduation, including those with a previous unfavorable attitude toward drug use.

Sport Saturday is funded through the BMAC grant provided by the Governor’s Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse (GCADA).

Register for Sport Saturday in the Recreation Office, 270 Chambers Bridge Road, Monday through Friday, 7:30am – 4pm or online at http://parksandrecreation.bricktownship.net. Call 732-262-1073 for more information.

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.