From Hazlet Township
August 26, 2022
All Invited to 8th Street Park Information Session, Overdose Awareness Day Flags on Display, Free Rabies Clinic
Creating a Dream Playground & Park in Hazlet
The Hazlet Township Committee's exciting plan to transform the 8th Street Park into a valued community park for the entire town continues to move forward.
All are invited to a Community Information Meeting hosted at the West Keansburg Firehouse, 91 Eighth St. Learn about the concept plan, talk to engineers, offer input and view the park site on Tuesday, August 30 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Tara Clark, the township's former mayor, continues to spearhead this project. On August 10 she sought the advice of playground experts at Hazlet Summer Recreation Camp. Clark read kids inspiring true story about a girl who helped design a playground in her community, then gave the children the challenge of helping design the future play space for 8th Street Park.
The children shared what they love most about playgrounds they have visited and gave invaluable feedback on structures like saucer swings, wavy slides, spinners, and rope towers. They were excited to hear that their suggestions would be shared with community members, town engineers, and Hazlet's governing body and they could create a dream playground of their own.
Purple Flags Are a Reminder of Overdose Risk
Fatal overdoses have killed at least 47 people in Monmouth County in 2022.
This can be prevented, says Nikki Tierney, who is the coordinator of The Hazlet Alliance for the Prevention of Substance Use Disorders and Mental Health Awareness.
The Alliance is spreading awareness of International Opioid Overdose Awareness Day on Wednesday, August 31. The purpose of the day is to raise awareness about the dangers of opioids, reduce stigma, and acknowledge the grief of families, friends, and loved ones of individuals who have died from fatal drug poisonings.
As you pass by the Police Headquarters on Middle Road, take note of the 47 purple flags planted on the lawn to honor those lives lost to fatal drug poisonings through April, 2022. They were put there by the Alliance, Hazlet Police Dept., the Prevention Coalition of Monmouth County and the NJ National Guard Counterdrug Task Force.
The new September Children's programming schedule is out. In addition to regular programs, the Monmouth County Library is hosting two special events for kids in celebration of its 100th birthday. There is a Birthday Bash creative drama workshop for toddlers on Saturday, Sept. 10, and a LEGO workshop for children on Monday, Sept. 19. Register online.
Movies are also offered at the library on Wednesdays. A special series called "Silent Cinema of the '20s" is offered as part of the 100th Celebration. Starting Sept. 7, there will be presentations of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1920), The Patsy (1928), Wings (1927) The Prisoner of Zenda (1922) on Wednesdays at 2 p.m. at the Hazlet Library.
Free Rabies Clinic Oct. 8
Hazlet Township will be conducting a free Rabies Clinic for dogs and cats on Saturday, Oct. 8, 2022 from 9 to 11 a.m. at the Dept. of Public Works building, located at 39 Leocadia Court, off Laurel Avenue, in Hazlet. All animals must be on a leash or in a carrier.
To license your pet in January 2023 the Rabies shot must be valid through October 31, 202. If your pet is deceased, or no longer living at your residence, please advise Hazlet Health Services so we can update our records. If you have any questions, please call 732-264-1700 ext. 8686.
Recreation Programs for Fall
Hazlet Recreation is offering new activities for children, including a "Messy Play" series from toddlers, Lego Robotics and Coding, Karate and Crafts. Adults can try Tabata Fitness, Tai Chi, Pickleball and more. See the Recreation page.
Litter Pick-up Event
The Raritan High School Girls Tennis Team signed up to clean up the high school campus on Saturday, August 20. The team and parents collected over 30 bags of trash and recyclables. Learn more about Hazlet Clean Communities and how to participate in a future clean-up. Nonprofits can earn mini-grants. See webpage.
From Hazlet Township
August 19, 2022
View the Municipal Budget Presentation; Status of 2022 Road Program; White Metal Pickup
Property tax bills were sent out this week, and you may have questions. How are tax dollars spent? What are the goals and priorities of the Township Committee? You can find the answers in the 2022 Municipal Budget presentation, prepared especially for Hazlet residents.
Police Youth Academy Week
Last week, Hazlet Police gave boys and girls a look into the life of a law enforcement officer. They had hands-on experiences with water safety, K-9 training, fingerprinting, a MedEvac helicopter, First Aid and much more. Parents gathered on Friday, August 12 for a formal graduation ceremony. Photos were posted daily on the department's social media pages. Parents said their kids loved the program and some now want to pursue a career as a police officer.
Hazlet Road Work Update
The Township Committee reports the 2022 Road Upgrade program should be substantially completed by September 23 with final restoration wrapped up by October 28.
See the Township Engineer's list of streets that have been completed, as well as the status report and expected completion date of others on the list.
Go to the Road Program section.
Next week, Hazlet Dept. of Public Works will pick up unwanted metal throughout the township.
AUGUST 22-25, 2022
What is 'White Metal'?
White metal consists of all items made of metal including large appliances. Examples are stoves, refrigerators, lawn mowers, washer/dryer machines, dishwashers, microwaves, hot water heaters, disassembled metal swing sets, iron railings, pipes, air conditioners and grills.
Pick-up is Free - Unless There's Freon
Any items containing Freon, such as air conditioners, refrigerators and freezers require a $25 check made payable to Hazlet Township. Attach an envelope with a check made out to Hazlet Township to the resident’s front/storm door when item is placed curbside for pick up.
When Can I Put it Out?
These items will be collected four times a year (see the recycling schedule for these dates) or they may be brought to the Recycling facility during regular operating hours. It is not necessary to contact the township for pickup. Items must be curbside by 7:00 a.m. on the day of scheduled pick-up.
From Hazlet Township
August 12, 2022
New Crosswalk Systems for Hazlet; Family Fundraiser for First Aid; Sewer Pipeline Work Notice
A Safer Way to Cross Busy Roads
Attentive motorists may have noticed three new crosswalk signal signs along Laurel and South Laurel Avenues.
These new “blinkersign” systems are designed to alert drivers to pedestrians trying to cross the road. A pedestrian can push a large button to alert drivers they wish to cross. Approaching drivers will immediately be alerted by flashing lights studded into the sign border. These lights, powered by solar, are designed to be seen from a distance, even in bright sunshine.
“In 2016, we had a fatal accident in Hazlet at 6th Street,” said Township Committeeman Skip McKay, recalling the driving-while-texting incident that took the life of 39-year-old Yuwen Wang of Hazlet. “I noticed these signs in use in Florida and thought this would be a good use of our ARPA funds.” The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 encourages municipalities to invest in public safety.
Hazlet Township has used $62,213 of its ARPA funds to purchase 26 new pedestrian signs for 13 crosswalks. So far, the Dept. of Public Works has installed them at Laurel Avenue and 6th Street, and also on South Laurel at Lillian Drive and Adam Place.
Other proposed locations include:
- Union Avenue & Hazlet Middle School Ball Field
- Union Avenue & Angela Circle
- Middle Road & Raritan High School/Concord
- Middle Road & Green Acres Drive/California
- Middle Road & Lynn Blvd
- Middle Road & Bromley
- Middle Road & Coach Drive East/ Coach Drive
- Poole Avenue & Ned Drive
- Beers Street & Dogwood Lane
- Beers Street & Linda Place /Rutgers Street
Hazlet Police Chief Ted Wittke and Ptl. Patrick Wood of the Traffic Safety Bureau invite the public to give input on troublesome crossings they don’t see on this list.
The crosswalk systems complement a pedestrian safety initiative by the police to make crossing the street safer in Hazlet.
Hazlet Police received $13,460 for a 2022 NJ Pedestrian Safety Enforcement and Education Grant. Two officers have been trained through AAA North America to set up and run Pedestrian Decoy Education and Enforcement details. Recently, the police ran a successful decoy event at 6th Street resulting in the issuing of warnings to 33 drivers. The drivers received a printed flyer to educate them on the law pertaining to pedestrians in crosswalks.
Under state law, motorists must stop for a pedestrian in a marked crosswalk. Failure to do can result in 2 points and a $200 fine, plus court costs, 15 days of community service and insurance surcharges. Ptl. Wood said the drivers must wait until the pedestrian exits the crosswalk on the other side. View NJ Statutes: Driver to yield to pedestrians; Crossing Roadway
Pedestrians also share a responsibility to cross safely. They must obey pedestrian signals and use crosswalks at signalized intersections or face a $54 fine. View NJ Statute: Use of designated crosswalk.
Reminder: Tax bills will be going out in coming days and the grace period has been extended. More info on the Tax Collector's page.
The August 16 Township Committee Special Workshop Meeting has been canceled.
The Land Use Board is scheduled to meet Thursday, August 18. The agenda is posted prior to the meeting in the Agenda Center.
A little lemonade stand on Carriage Road has made life a little sweeter in Hazlet.
To demonstrate to their young children how to show appreciation for community volunteers, the Bongiorno family set up a tent and a table to sell cold lemonade or iced tea ($1.00) and cookies (2 for a $1.00) to raise funds for the Hazlet First Aid and Rescue Squad. They put the word out on social media and waited. Joe Bongiorno joked he honestly thought he'd be handing over a check to the First Aid for $9. But the response was amazing on this 98 degree day, and the family of five was astonished to see a steady stream of people, including local First Aid squads, who wanted to support the cause. A couple of residents paid for theirs with a $20 bill. By the end of the event on July 30, the kids had earned $211, which was proudly delivered to the squad by Sofia, 7, Vincent, 5, Valentina, 4
"It was great to see people getting together to something good," said Bongiorno, who moved to Hazlet with his family from Brooklyn in 2018. "The smile on my kids' faces when people came up to the stand, to see them racing to get them a cup. I tell you it was so great. They were so happy."
Thanks to the turnout, Joe and Maria Bongiorno plan to do it again on September 17, from 9 am to 4 pm on Carriage Road, located off Middle Road.
NJ's Sales Tax Holiday Aug. 27 - Sept. 5
Planning back-to-school shopping? Be aware New Jersey has established a Sales Tax Holiday for certain retail sales of computers, school supplies, and sport or recreational equipment when sold to an individual purchaser for non-business use. Some examples are book bags, athletic shoes, paintbrushes, printers, and computers with a sales price less than $3,000.
The Sales Tax Holiday takes place between August 27 through September 5 of 2022. Sellers should not charge Sales Tax on eligible items when purchased during the Sales Tax Holiday. Read more on the state website.
Sewer Pipeline Work Notice
The Bayshore Regional Sewerage Authority (BRSA) will be rehabilitating its interceptor sewer pipelines in certain Hazlet neighborhoods. The rehabilitation work will be performed in three areas of Hazlet Township and will utilize the cured-in-place liner method to minimize disturbances to all residents and businesses. The project areas are:
- NJSH Route 36 Crossing (Between Palmer Avenue & Monroe Avenue)
- Hudson Avenue (Between Curren Street & River Street)
- Ninth & Eleventh Street
The work is expected to begin on Monday, August 15, 2022 and take between three and four weeks to complete. Official notice
If you are experiencing a bad mosquito problem, an inspector from the Monmouth County Mosquito Division can visit your property to look for standing water sources that support mosquito larvae. If larvae are found, the inspector will either treat the water or in the case of a container such as a bucket, dump the water.
A typical inspection will survey your property and adjacent properties (provided that permission to enter is granted by the owner or resident). If you identify a suspected source not on your property, the staff will still check that property for water sources that may be overlooked.
The goal is to control mosquitoes before they become biting adult mosquitoes. Inspectors do not apply treatments to eliminate flying mosquitoes, rather eliminate larvae at the source.
You do not need to be home at the time of the inspection. The inspector will leave a note with the findings. Please note concerns or obstacles such as locked gates or outside pets in the comments section of this request form.
Depending on demand, an inspector should visit within 7-10 business days.
Landlord Tenant Informational Webinar
As part of its outreach to the public, New Jersey Courts hold informational virtual webinars to discuss a variety of available services. On Wednesday, Sept. 14 from 2:30 to 4 p.m., the topic will be about Landlord Tenant issues. Topics will include:
- the role of courts in resolving landlord tenant matters focusing on eviction complaints
- the current status of court processes relating to non-payment of rent
- the voluntary pretrial/settlement conference process
- the rights and responsibilities of landlords
- the rights and responsibilities of tenants
- the community resources available to assist landlords and tenants in navigating the process, identifying potential financial assistance, and reducing the risks of housing instability resulting from evictions due to non-payment of rent; and
- the services of the Judiciary Ombudsman Program.
Registration is required. Sign up here. This webinar is free, open to the public
From Hazlet Township
August 5, 2022
New Business Administrator Named; Self-Storage Facility Plans Approved; Remembering a Former Mayor
Hazlet Township Welcomes New Township Administrator
Robert Bengivenga, who has extensive experience in both the private and public sector, will take the helm at Hazlet Township’s Town Hall starting September 1. His appointment won unanimous support in a vote by the four Township Committee members present at the August 2 meeting.
As the top executive, Bengivenga will have a significant role overseeing the general management of the town, its business functions and its activities. He succeeds Dennis Pino, who has served since 2013 and will continue as Hazlet’s Construction Code Official.
“Hazlet appreciates Dennis Pino’s hard work and commitment to making Hazlet a great place to live all these years, and he has paved the way for the new administrator,” said Committeeman Pete Terranova. “Rob Bengivenga’s experience and knowledge will help take Hazlet to another level. It’s a great time to be a resident of this town.”
Committeeman Skip McKay added, “The Township Committee was happy to approve a wonderfully talented business administrator to lead us through very challenging times ahead, as we deal with inflation, supply chain and stormwater issues.”
Bengivenga, 39, will leave his post as Business Administrator in Phillipsburg, a town of 15,000 in Warren County, where he helped develop a $19 million municipal budget, oversaw all departments, negotiated union contracts, supervised purchasing, advised the Redevelopment Committee and was involved in flood hazard mitigation.
At home in South Plainfield, Bengivenga is currently serving in his sixth term as a Borough Councilman where he gained hands-on experience working with the community, budgets, personnel, purchasing, public works, capital improvement projects and labor contracts. He has experience developing a $30 million municipal budget, as well as a $6.8 million sewer utility budget and a $300,000 pool utility budget. He is the chairman of the Administration, Finance & Public Information committees. He is also a member of the Economic Development, Shared Services and Public Works committees.
Bengivenga earned a BS in Marketing from the Kania School of Management at University of Scranton (PA). He also has taken municipal administration and management courses through the Rutgers University Center for Executive Leadership in Government. He is a Qualified Purchasing Agent.
His married to Priscilla. They have two children, Matthew and Nora, and are expecting a baby boy in January 2023.
Township Budget is OK'd, Tax Bills Will be Mailed Soon
- The 2022 Municipal Budget was approved by the governing body on August 4. The municipal tax rate is flat for the third year in a row. Municipal taxes account for about 23 percent of a resident's total Property Tax Bill. More info on the Finance Page.
- The Tax Collector's Office can now move forward with mailing out bills.
- The latest from Tax Collector Courtney Hogan:
The grace period for payment has been extended. We have received our certified 2022 tax rate and are currently working on getting the figures into our system. We anticipate the tax bills to be mailed by the week of August 15th. The grace period to pay without interest for the August quarter has been extended to Friday September 9, 2022. Residents enrolled in the Direct Debit payment program will see the debit to their authorized account on September 9, 2022.
- The latest from Tax Collector Courtney Hogan:
- The Township Committee will meet for a Special Workshop Meeting to discuss Personnel at 7 p.m. August 16. Action may be taken.
UPDATE August 8: This meeting has been canceled.
The Sun Is Setting on the Red Barn
Take your farewell photos. The Township Committee has voted to pay T&M Associates $14,200 for Design and Construction services to demolish the red storage and garage building adjacent to the James J. Cullen Center at Veterans Park. Repairs to the roof and structure are not worth the investment, experts say. A date for demolition has not yet been announced.
The Red Barn at Veterans Park
Let's Keep it Clean
Hazlet Clean Communities addresses litter abatement through education, enforcement and community clean-ups. You can report litter problems, illegal dumping or volunteer for a clean-up in the Clean Communities section, as well as reach the new coordinator.
Self-Storage Plan for Vacant ShopRite Site
A plan is progressing to transform the site of a long-vacant ShopRite into a modern self-storage facility. The Land Use Board had previously given approval to applicant Hazlet 66 LLC to convert the existing vacant building into storage space.
On August 4, the Board approved more plans to construct four additional self-storage buildings on the site, located at 1030 Route 36, near the intersection with Dutch Lane.
Future Self Storage Facility on Rt. 36
POUND® is a cardio jam session inspired by the infectious, energizing and sweat-dripping fun of playing the drums. Instead of listening to music, you become the music in this exhilarating full-body workout that combines cardio, conditioning and strength training with yoga and Pilates-inspired movements. Using Ripstix®, lightly-weighted drumsticks engineered specifically for exercise, POUND® transforms drumming into an incredibly effective way of working out. View the website. Register at Hazlet.Recdesk.com under Programs tab, then Fitness. Instructor: Christina Ausiello
Mayor Michael Sachs and the Hazlet Township Committee are remembering the contributions of former Hazlet Mayor, Kevin Lavan. He died July 31 after a long illness.
Lavan, a Democrat, served as Hazlet Township's Deputy Mayor in 2007-2008 and Mayor in 2009. He has stayed active in Hazlet's Democratic Party ever since, and was a Primary candidate for the 2022 election.
He was known as a gentleman with a warm handshake and passion for his hometown. He was also a veteran who served in the US Army 1962-1964. A banner with his photo and years of service was installed in Veterans Park in 2021. Flags on township property were lowered in his honor.
"He was here for the people, he worked hard for the town," said Mayor Michael Sachs, a Republican, who served alongside Lavan on the governing body and various boards. "He was on the Committee for one reason, and that was to do what he felt was best for the town. He will be missed."
Visitation will take place Sunday, August 7 from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. at Shore Point Funeral Home, 3269 Route 35 North, Hazlet. The funeral will be held 10 a.m. Monday, August 8 at Holy Family Roman Catholic Church, 727 Highway 36, Union Beach. Entombment will follow at St. Joseph Cemetery Mausoleum, 360 Broadway, Keyport.
Hazlet Citizen Weekly is published by the Public Information Office. It is posted on the township website on Fridays, with copies distributed to the Hazlet Library and posted outside the James J. Cullen community center.. You can be alerted by signing up here. Questions? Contact Christina Johnson, Public Information Officer: (732) 217-8660 or firstname.lastname@example.org.