MAYOR URGES GOVERNOR MURPHY TO VETO BILL

Mayor John G. Ducey is calling on Governor Phil Murphy to veto Senate Bill 2, which was passed by the Senate and Assembly. The bill strips adjustment school aid from over 100 districts, including Brick Township and redistributes it to other districts around the state. Under the plan, Brick will lose approximately $22.5 million in adjustment aid.

“This bill is an affront to our community, our schools and our taxpayers. Eliminating aid from our schools will have a severe impact on Brick Township in terms of higher taxes and poorer education for our schoolchildren,” said Mayor Ducey. “I implore Governor Murphy to do the right thing and veto this bill.”

Senate Bill 2, which was sponsored by State Senate President Stephen Sweeney (3rd District) will eliminate adjustment aid from the Brick Township public schools over the next seven years. That money would then be redistributed to districts that are said to by underfunded. According to the state’s formula, Brick Township is considered a ‘wealthy’ district.

“Our schools are trying to provide our students with a great education in as affordable way as possible and this bill is going to make that task even harder,” said Mayor Ducey.

Brick Township is also still dealing with the financial impact of Superstorm Sandy. “Our ratable base is still down over $309 million dollars from before the storm which is still impacting the taxpayers of our town. To add this to their burden is quite frankly unacceptable,” said Mayor Ducey.

The increases caused by this bill will hit older residents particularly hard. According to the last census, here in Brick Township there are 18,067 residents ages 60 and over – nearly 25% of the entire community.

“A significant number of our older residents are retired or are on fixed incomes. The massive school tax increases that will be caused by this legislation will have a severe impact on their quality of life,” said Mayor Ducey.

Mayor Ducey encourages residents to share their views on this legislation with Governor Murphy by calling the Governor’s Office or reaching out via social media including Facebook and Twitter.

DISCOUNT AMUSEMENT TICKETS OFFERED BY RECREATION DEPARTMENT

The Brick Township Recreation Department is pleased to offer discount tickets to several regional attractions. Tickets can be purchased in person at the Recreation Office while supplies last. This year’s offers are:

  • Adventure Aquarium, Camden NJ – $21.50 (over 12), $17.50 (2 – 12 years)
  • Morey’s Piers, The Wildwoods, NJ – $59.75 (flexible combo 48” and over), $46.25 (flexible combo under 48”)
  • Six Flags Great Adventure, Jackson, NJ – $45 ( adult theme park), $35 (adult Hurricane Harbor), $21.50 (parking pass for either theme park or Hurricane Harbor)
  • Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom, Allentown, PA – $45 (adult regular season)
  • Hershey Park, Hershey, PA – $54 (adult ages 9 – 54), $41 (ages 3-8 & 55-69)
  • Philadelphia Zoo, Philadelphia, PA – $20 (adult/child. Under 2yrs is FREE)
  • Casino Pier & Breakwater Beach, Seaside Heights, NJ – $29 (Breakwater Beach all-day), $52 (Ride & Slide Same Day)
  • Medieval Times, Lyndhurst, NJ – $35 ( General admission)

For more information, please call 732-262-1073.

TOWNSHIP PARTICIPATING IN KIDS TO PARKS DAY ON MAY 19

The Township of Brick will be taking part in National Kids to Parks Day on Saturday, May 19. Started by the National Park Trust in 2011, Kids to Parks Day is a nationally coordinated day designed to connect kids and families with their local, state and national parks.

The Brick Township Recreation Department will be hosting a family-friendly bus tour of select parks in the township. There will be a scavenger hunt, catered lunch at Windward Beach and other fun activities along the route. The bus will depart from Civic Plaza at 10:00am and make stops at the following parks: Herbertsville Park, Arrowhead Park, Windward Beach, Angela Hibbard Park, Lake Riviera Park and Hank Waltonowski Park. The bus is expected to return to Civic Plaza at approximately 3:30pm.

“We have over twenty different parks and recreational facilities here in Brick Township for our residents to enjoy”, said Mayor John G. Ducey. “I encourage all families to go outside on May 19 and join those around the country in celebrating our beautiful public lands.”

Space on the bus is very limited. To register call Carol Smith at 732-262-4622.

TOWNSHIP AND SCHOOLS TO HOST SENIOR CITIZEN PROM

Mayor John G. Ducey, the Township Council and Brick Township Public Schools invite Brick’s senior citizen community members to enjoy the free 2018 Senior Citizen Prom on Friday, May 11 from 6-9 PM at Lake Riviera Middle School, 171 Beaverson Boulevard.

National Honor Society students from Brick Township High School and Brick Memorial High School again come together to organize this 11th annual event with the Township Recreation Department.

The Brick Township Senior Prom brings generations together for an evening to remember. It provides a fun way for Brick’s students, staff, and citizens to enjoy food, dancing and fun, according to Mayor Ducey.

“The Senior Citizen Prom is a great event that highlights two of our town’s best resources, our students and our senior residents,” said Mayor John G. Ducey. “Everyone benefits from this intergenerational celebration and, more importantly, everyone has a great time.”

The 11th Annual Brick Township Senior Citizen Prom will feature music by Sentimental Journey Big Band. The night is accompanied by a special dinner menu compliments of many generous restaurants from Brick Township, who donate the evening’s meal. Seniors, staff, and students are encouraged to wear prom appropriate attire and to bring their dancing shoes for musical performances and student talent. In keeping with prom tradition, students will count the submitted ballots and announce the 2018 Senior Citizen Prom King and Prom Queen before the last dance.

Please RSVP your intentions by May 4, 2018 to Cindy Colantoni in the Brick Township Recreation Department by calling 732- 262-1073. This event is limited to 150 Brick Township residents and is on a first come first served basis.

INPUT NEEDED ON BICYCLE AND PEDESTRIAN MASTER PLAN

Mayor John Ducey, the Township Council and the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs Local Planning Services office are preparing a bicycle and pedestrian master plan for the Township. The plan will identify and help to prioritize strategies that will increase the number and frequency of people walking and bicycling within the Township as well as increase safety and connectivity for all road users. The plan will provide draft recommendations for improving the connectivity, safety, convenience, and attractiveness of the Township’s pedestrian and bicycle networks.

The municipality is holding a public open house to receive input from residents on the plan on Tuesday, April 17 at 5:30 at Civic Plaza at 270 Chambers Bridge Road. Attendees will have the opportunity to provide feedback as the plan is being developed.

“The input that the public provided at our previous open house in November and through the online survey was essential to the plan,” said Council President Heather deJong, a member of the working committee. “This open house will give residents the chance to see how the plan is developing and to help shape it further.”

Public input is critical to help develop a plan that addresses the needs of people on foot and on bike in neighborhoods across the Township.

 

BRICK TOWNSHIP AND BUILD-A-BEAR WORKSHOP TO HOST BRICK PRIDE BEAR EVENT

Build-A-Bear is partnering with Brick Township to create the first ever Brick Pride Bear on May 6th from 10:00am-12:00pm at the Brick Civic Plaza (270 Chambers Bridge Rd.). This event will be the first ever Build-A-Bear Pop-Up Workshop to be held by a city or municipality in the entire country. The registration fee of $30 includes a bear, special Brick Pride Bear t-shirt, heart ceremony, naming certificate and audio recording. A portion of the fee will also go towards supporting the Lounge 270 Teen Center.

After the Build-A-Bear Workshop, participants are invited to Windward Beach from 12:30pm-1:30pm to join Mayor John G. Ducey for a Teddy Bear Picnic. Participants are suggested to bring their bear, blanket and a picnic lunch to the park for this official welcoming ceremony. Other stuffed bears are welcome. You do not need to participate in the Build-A-Bear Workshop to be a part of the picnic. The Teddy Bear Picnic will be weather permitting.

Bear supplies are limited. To reserve your spot, visit parksandrecreation.bricktownship.net and click on “Special Events”. You can also call 732-262-1044. All bears must be reserved by March 30th.

This event is made possible by Mayor Ducey’s Brick Youth initiative. With the enthusiastic stewardship of Coordinator Colleen Kahl, the goal of Brick Youth is to engage the young people of Brick Township, providing them with a greater voice in the community and with opportunities to enjoy and participate in community events.

For updates on this event and other youth inspired initiatives in Brick, Like BRICK YOUTH on Facebook or visit brickyouth.org.

MAYOR DUCEY HONORED FOR HIS COMMITMENT TO RECREATION AND PARKS

Mayor John G. Ducey was named the recipient of the New Jersey Recreation and Parks Association’s Public Service Award. Mayor Ducey received the award at the NJRPA’s Annual Conference in Atlantic City on March 6.

“I am honored to have been chose recipient of this award. I thank the New Jersey Recreation and Parks Association for both this recognition and the work that the entire organization does to better our communities through recreation,” said Mayor Ducey. “I would also like to thank the staff of Brick Township, particularly our Recreation Department. While my name is on this award, I humbly share it with the people who work every day to keep our Recreation programs and facilities running for the residents of our community.”

Mayor Ducey was nominated for the award by Brick Township Recreation Director Daniel Santaniello.

Mayor Ducey’s nomination highlighted his commitment to improving the quality of life through the provision of excellent recreational facilities, events and programs. These efforts include the renovation of Herbertsville (formerly Colorado) Park, Lake Riviera Park, Angela Hibbard Park and Hank Waltonowski Park, the construction of new playgrounds at Windward Beach Park, the creation of Brick Township’s first dog parks, the renovation of the Forge Pond Tennis Courts, the construction of the town’s first dedicated pickleball courts, the enhancements to the SummerFest series, the creation of the FallFest event and the creation of the township’s first teen center, Lounge 270.

“I can’t think of anyone who deserves this award more than Mayor Ducey. He has a great appreciation for the importance of Recreation and has been a great supporter of our Department and has given us the resources we need to make Brick Township better,” said Mr. Santaniello who has served as Director since 2014 and has been a part of the Recreation Department since 1992. “Mayor Ducey always has an open door and an open mind for our suggestions and requests and I can’t understate how important that is.”

Mayor Ducey and the Council will continue their Parks Improvement Program with the renovations of the Bernard Cooke and Bayside Parks which will be followed by the improvement of Cedar Bridge Manor Park.

The NJRPA Public Service Award is given to elected or appointed individuals at any level of government serving at time of nomination and has provided dedicated service for at least three years on behalf of area residents in the interest of parks, recreation, conservation or leisure activities.

The New Jersey Recreation and Park Association (NJRPA) is dedicated to enhancing the lives of all New Jersey residents by supporting outstanding park, recreation, and natural resources management programs.  Since 1928, the efforts initiated by NJRPA and its membership have resulted in tangible benefits for communities throughout the state.

MAYOR AND COUNCIL DONATE CDBG FUNDS TO LOCAL SERVICE GROUPS

Mayor John G. Ducey and the Township Council will present checks to representatives of fourteen local service providers at the February 27, 2018 Council meeting. The checks, which range from $2,000 to $8,000, are from funding the Township receives as part of the Federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program. The checks will assist the organizations in providing a wide variety of services to the 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 donated a total of $37,000 to these organizations.

“The organizations that we are honored to support through our CDBG program have an enormous impact on our community and the Jersey Shore. It is impossible to calculate how many lives are touched by and how many people will be helped by them,” said Mayor Ducey. “We are honored and privileged to help each one of these groups in their missions to make people’s lives better.”

The CDBG Check recipients are:

  • Community Services, Inc. of Ocean County/Meals on Wheels – $7,000 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 Epiphany, St. Vincent DePaul Society – $3,000Volunteers 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.
  • Ocean County Hunger Relief – $2,000Ocean County Hunger Relief provides emergency food assistance for needy people. They operate 38 food pantries throughout Ocean County. They may be reached at 732-505-HELP.
  • Providence House – $3,000A 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.
  • Dottie’s House – $2,000Dottie’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 – $2,000There 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.
  • The Arc, Ocean County Chapter – $2,000The 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.
  • Ocean’s Harbor House – $8,000Ocean’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.
  • Church of the Visitation – $2,000The 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.
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ocean County, Inc. – $2,000Big Brothers / Big Sisters of Ocean County provides community and site-based mentoring services for young people throughout the county. This year’s grant will help offset funds for Big Brothers to start a mentoring program in Brick’s elementary schools. They may be reached 732-905-5349.
  • Caregiver Volunteers of Central Jersey – $2,000Caregiver 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 – $2,000Jersey 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.

Mayor Ducey is concerned about the future of these grants as President Trump’s proposed budget that was unveiled earlier this month eliminates the CDBG program. “These organizations help thousands of citizens every year and the CDBG money is crucial to their mission,” said Mayor Ducey. “The proposal to eliminate this funding shows an alarming lack of passion and empathy for the most vulnerable members of our society. It is my hope that our leaders in Washington do not allow the CDBG program to be eliminated.”

Mayor Ducey also credits Township Planner Michael Fowler for his work on the CDBG Program. “I commend Mr. Fowler for the hard work he did coordinating this year’s CDBG Program. This used to be handled by a vendor and he added this to his workload. He has done a great job and has created significant savings for the township in the process.”

 

 

MAYOR DUCEY ANNOUNCES SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITY

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 an application packet here. 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 9, 2018. Completed applications should be mailed to Mayor John Ducey, Attention: NJSLOM Scholarship, 401 Chambers Bridge Road, Brick, NJ, 08723.

 

 

BMAC OFFERS NEW PROGRAM FOR YOUNG ATHLETES

The Brick Municipal Anti-Drug Coalition (BMAC) is offering a new program for township boys and girls ages 9 through 12 called Sport Saturday. 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 6 through April 14 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.