By Laura KolnoskiOCEANPORT – Controversy over two redevelopment sites within borough borders drew more than a dozen borough residents to a recent meeting of the Fort Monmouth Economic Revitalization Authority (FMERA).HOMELESS SHELTER CHALLENGEDWhen Super Storm Sandy destroyed the former Fort Monmouth barracks that housed county homeless persons, tenants were relocated to the John L. Montgomery Care Center in Freehold. The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders oversees that facility and recently voted to approve its potential sale. The residents must move to the county’s new homeless facility on the fort in Oceanport by Nov. 1, said Freeholder Lillian Burry, the county’s FMERA representative.“Hence the urgency in finding a suitable place,” she said after the meeting. While residents at the meeting expressed concerns about declines in property values, safety and quality of life, as well as a change in the shelter’s location from its original Oceanport site, officials at first indicated the matter was out of their hands, and then floated the possibility of reconsideration.Bruce Steadman, FMERA executive director, explained that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has a formal commitment with New Jersey and the fort’s redevelopment authority to locate a county homeless shelter in Oceanport as part of the “reuse plan” created after the base’s closure in 2005. HUD approved the re-use plan in 2010. Officials, working with an engineer, were involved in the building selection process.“Persons may only stay at the shelter for 30 days; it’s temporary while they find work or a new home,” Burry said. “Usually there are never more than 24 residents. Men and women are separated. If there are problems requiring police, the town responds but the state police are stationed right there. Residents are not allowed to hang around, they must go look for work or do other things. If they drink or do drugs, they are removed; it’s very strict.”Councilman John Patti, filling in for Oceanport Mayor Michael Mahon on the FMERA board, read a statement, commenting, “Residents are at their wit’s end. Relocation of the homeless shelter must be thoroughly discussed in the best interests of Oceanport. We are seeking good neighbors. We want to work together with this board to find a suitable place, if in fact it must be placed in Oceanport.”Councilman Chris Paglia added, “The council has been besieged on the homeless shelter in recent days.”“The re-use plan is the driver for all redevelopment of fort properties and this site seems best to fulfill the goals of the plan,” Steadman said. “The plan has occasional changes due to changes in the market. HUD has authorized a homeless shelter in Oceanport be operated by the county, there is a legal agreement. There’s no way to deviate from that, but thequestion is where we will place that.” Steadman noted that Mahon has been a member ofFMERA’s real estate sub-committee and other council members have sat in on other board meetings. Meetings between FMERA staff and the three mayors (Eatontown, Oceanport, and Tinton Falls), occur at least once monthly as policy. He also directed the public to the board’s professionally revamped website, for fortmonmouthredevelopment.com.FMERA Chairman James Gorman thanked residents for attending to offer their views and options. “It’s a wonderful thing and the process works,” Gorman said. “If the public has questions, use our email rather than listening to innuendo and rumors on Facebook. Please continue to come to our meetings.”DRUG REHABILITATION OPERATIONS QUESTIONEDOceanport and state officials are scrutinizing the arrangement between AcuteCare, which took over the fort’s former Patterson Clinic last year, and its new tenant, Unity Place of Monmouth County, a behavioral health service with a partial day care program. Unity moved into its new headquarters on Fort Monmouth July 7 according to its Facebook page. The site states Unity accepts referrals from health care sources, crisis centers, probation/parole, and drug court. Unity, formerly located on Heck Avenue in Neptune, has been posting photos of its new location’s renovation on Facebook since May. A letter to clients announcing the move was sent out June 25.At the Aug. 26 meeting, Councilman Patti said police were called to the location on Stephenson Avenue recently to handle disturbances, alerting the police and township officials that drug-related treatment was going on there for the first time. Borough, FMERA and state officials maintained drug rehabilitation was never mentioned as a potential use during the proposal and approval process.The acquisition of the former clinic by AcuteCare of Lakewood has been touted as one of the fort’s redevelopment victories. AcuteCare Health System, LLC, formed in 2002, establishes and manages long-term acute care hospitals. The firm purchased the 15-acre, 98,000-square-facility for $2.73 million, spent about $5 million in renovations, and expects to generate at least 200 jobs.“We were told it would be medical suites not drug rehab,” Patti said. “Nothing at the planning board ever mentioned a rehab facility. We’re not against that, but come and tell us.” Patti said the council is discussing the matter with its attorney.“They made broad statements in their proposal,” Steadman said.Gorman asked the state Attorney General to, “Look into it. It’s fair to say that no one on the FMERA side knew this was what it would be used for, but we have to verify that.”
By Jay Cook |An administrative law judge announced today that she has denied a much-maligned transmission line project designed to run through five Monmouth County towns.Administrative Law Judge Gail M. Cookson determined that Jersey Central Power & Light Co. (JCP&L) “has not met its burden of proof” in exhibiting the need for the Monmouth County Reliability Project (MCRP) – a $111 million, 230-kV transmission line planned to run 10 miles from Aberdeen to Red Bank, through Hazlet, Holmdel and Middletown, along the NJ Transit North Jersey Coast Line.In her decision, Cookson wrote “the aesthetic, real estate, and environmental impacts on the five communities is overwhelming and is not offset by the interests of all JCP&L ratepayers, that is, the general public.”Cookson’s decision is the first major hurdle for the project’s dissenters. Residents Against Giant Electric (RAGE), a residents group opposed to the MCRP, spent over $450,000 in fighting the project through the courts. The governing bodies from Middletown, Hazlet, Holmdel and Aberdeen also formed a joint municipal group to fight the MCRP.Cookson’s recommendation is now sent to the state Board of Public Utilities, where the board will ultimately decide the MCRP’s fate.Read Cookson’s full decision in this PDF: Judge Cookson Initial Decision 2018_03_08Look for a full story in the March 15 edition of The Two River Times.
FRISCO, Texas – Sam Houston State’s Lusine Chobanyan is the Southland Conference Player of the Week, the league announced Tuesday. Southland Conference Players of the Week are presented by UniversalCoin.com. At the No. 6 singles slot this weekend, Chobanyan defeated Texas A&M’s Iulia Ivascu 6-4, 6-4 on Friday and Houston’s Ana Glumac 6-1, 6-2 on Sunday. The point over the Cougars was the Bearkats’ lone point of the match. The sophomore from Yerevan, Armenia, is now 3-0 in dual match singles play this season. She and partner Rosalie Gerritsen were up 4-2 on UH when play was suspended after the doubles point had been clinched. Chobanyan did not play in doubles against the Aggies. Southland weekly award winners are nominated and voted upon by each school’s sports information director. Voting for one’s own athlete is not permitted. To earn honorable mention, a student-athlete must appear on at least 25 percent of ballots. This is Chobanyan’s first career weekly award and Sam Houston’s first since 2009 when Irina Sotnikova won the award twice. Honorable Mention: Dany Raygadas, Southeastern Louisiana; Luna Dormet, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. Despite Sam Houston State (1-2, 0-0 SLC) dropping both of its matches this weekend, falling 2-5 to Texas A&M and 1-5 to Houston, Chobanyan was able to pick up a pair of wins on the road. The Bearkats return to the court Saturday at UTSA for a 1 p.m. CT contest. Women’s Tennis Player of the Week – Lusine Chobanyan – So. – Yerevan, Armenia
KINGSTON, Jamaica (CMC): Legendary Sri Lankan strokemaker Kumar Sangakarra says he is already looking forward to the “enchanting” experience the Caribbean holds after being selected to represent Jamaica Tallawahs in the fourth edition of the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) starting in June. The 38-year-old left-hander is one of the most sought-after batsmen in the game’s shortest format and will join the likes of superstar opener Chris Gayle and exciting all-rounder André Russell in a formidable Tallawahs unit over the summer. “Over my 15 years playing international cricket, I only toured the West Indies twice, aside from playing in ICC Cricket World Cup 2007 and the ICC World T20 in 2010, but every time I played here, it was a special experience,” Sangakkara said. He added: “When you play in the Caribbean, you can’t help but be enchanted by the public who makes playing here so special. They’re passionate, fun, and extremely knowledgeable. The island feel and the music and traditions of the Caribbean are amazing and I can’t wait to get back.” INITIAL SUCCESS Sangakkara tasted success with the Tallawahs in the inaugural year of the tournament when the Gayle-led side beat Guyana Amazon Warriors in the final in Port-of-Spain. Now retired from international cricket, Sangakkara said that he was anxious to build on this success. “I am extremely excited to be part of the Jamaica Tallawahs again this year, having enjoyed being part of the squad who went on to win the inaugural trophy back in 2013. The CPL is a competition that is growing year on year and the quality is extremely high,” the former Sri Lankan captain said. He continued: “Our goal with the Tallawahs is to build game by game and go on and try to win the competition. We have some outstanding players such as Chris Gayle, AndrÈ Russell and Chadwick Walton, and we will aim to build a cohesive side and add strength, which I believe we have done now. “It’s clear that there has been real growth in popularity and appeal in the CPL, and with the quality of cricketers who have been attracted across all of the teams, this could be the best year yet.”
The Liberia Movie Union (LIMU) has announced the commencement of its national inter high school drama competition. LIMU has targeted 60 schools for this year’s drama and performance school awards.The inter-high drama competition is in collaboration with Ministry of Information Cultural Affairs and Tourism (MICAT) and supported by the Ministry of Education (MOE).LIMU vice president, Ms. Kadiatu Kaba made the disclosure recently in Monrovia. She stated that the aim this year’s inter-high school drama event was designed to awaken hidden talents in the country and to bring unity amongst schools in arts by exposing society ills and most of all; promoting the country ‘s culture through learning institutions.The LIMU VP revealed that auditions will start February 14, while the preliminary begins on the 30th of the February, with the grand finale scheduled for March 20th 2014.The audition is expected to take place at Providence Island and will be graced by an array of government officials intended to inspire and stimulate students that would qualify for the preliminary contest. “The Introduction of Inter-high School Drama is being used as a tool to translate Liberian culture, value and norms to modern society. It would also serve as a means of discovering new actors, artists and other entertainers that may one day replace our current batch of stars and help maintain our culture,” Mrs. Kaba explained.She indicated that during the 2013 competition; three schools were victorious, including: Susan A. Berry emerged the overall winner while Len Miller High School won second place and Soltiamon Christian High School took third. All winners walked away with rewarding cash prizes aimed at motivating their respective schools. 2014’s cash awards are LD$25,000 for the winner; LD$15,000 for second place; and LD$ 10,000 for third.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Icy roads in the Peace area have reduced Highway 29 to single lane traffic at the Halfway River Bridge. Police report that an accident earlier today at the bridge has damaged the bridge deck and taken out cement barriers. Single lane alternating traffic will continue at the bridge until cement barriers can be replaced and a Bridge Inspector can arrive on scene to ensure the bridge is still structurally sound.- Advertisement –
“We are asking this most democratic of all countries to give us dignity … to continue to defend the American dream,” Nu ez said. Many in the crowd said they were moved that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi sent a letter in support of a bill introduced last week that would give millions of illegal immigrants a chance to become citizens, with a visa that would let them work and live in the country while they seek permanent status and eventual citizenship. Immigrants would be told to learn English and pay fines for staying illegally. “I think that’s fair,” said 40-year-old Los Angeles resident Reina De Centeno. “It’s what I had to do when I became a citizen here.” Elsewhere, pro- and anti-immigration groups rallied at the downtown L.A. Federal Building, where about 500 people called for immigration reform while a smaller group demanded stiffer enforcement of U.S. borders. Despite the lower-than-anticipated turnout for the pro-immigration rally, organizer Marta Rojas said last year’s event launched an important movement. “The government is starting to listen,” she said. “They are starting to see the strength of the immigrants.” Valley residents were also expected to hold a “March for Justice” at Brand Park in Mission Hills to coincide with events commemorating the life of the late labor leader Cesar Chavez, who would have been 80 on Saturday. The Associated Press contributed to this report. email@example.com (818) 713-3664 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Thousands of immigrants and their supporters gathered at rallies and forums throughout Los Angeles Sunday to mark the anniversary of massive demonstrations that virtually shut down the city and spotlighted the need for national immigration reform. Hoping their voices would reach lawmakers in Washington, D.C., thousands of people met inside the Los Angeles Sports Arena to hear speeches and music and join a massive letter-writing campaign. Admission to “Justice For Our Families” was free for participants who brought their own 39-cent stamp and signed pre-written letters asking lawmakers to consider passing a fair immigration-reform package. The letters also asked lawmakers to drop a fee increase for citizen applications. Organizers and participants, including groups representing day laborers and members of the Asian and African-American communities, aimed to collect more than 5,000 letters. “Some may have been losing hope from last year, but there is still hope,” said Maria Rodriguez, youth organizer for the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, or CHIRLA, one of the organizers. “This event is saying we are continuing the fight, that there is hope there will be a bill that everyone wants.” Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa charged up the Americanflag-waving crowd, saying his proudest day as mayor was when a historic half-million people marched through L.A. last year. “They marched peacefully to say: We work here, our children go to school, and we want to be part of the American dream,” Villaraigosa said in English and in Spanish. “They marched to say: This is a great and generous America. … There should be a legal pathway to citizenship.” State Assembly Speaker Fabian Nu ez urged the crowd to support the United States by waving the American flag. Some last year had criticized march participants for holding up flags of their homelands. “We need to raise the American flag because this is our country,” Nu ez said as the crowd chanted: “U.S.A! U.S.A.!” then “S se puede!” or “Yes, it can be done!”
Some of the biggest names in Chinese football, including international winger Wu Lei, were at the recent launch of the new Chongming Genbao Football Club.Wu was once dubbed “China’s Maradona” by Xu, the man who discovered him and many others now playing in the Chinese Super League (CSL).“You are always telling me to retire and to be honest, I really want to,” Xu, sporting his trademark dark glasses, told journalists at the launch at a stately hotel in Shanghai.But Xu looks nowhere near as old as his years — he turns 74 in January — and now is not the time to quit the football scene in China. Because under President Xi Jinping the government is throwing money at ramping up the quality of Chinese football.CSL clubs have invested vast amounts of cash in foreign stars such as Shanghai SIPG’s 60-million-euro Brazilian Oscar and the disappointing Carlos Tevez at Shanghai Shenhua, both reportedly on some of the highest wages in world football.China is also forging partnerships with clubs and football associations across the globe to help drag up the level of Chinese youth players, and Xu wants to play his part.“Today, we have all five generations in the same room,” Xu said at the launch of Chongming Genbao, referring to an array of past, present and perhaps future football stars.“It is to combine our forces for Chinese football and make efforts for Chinese football.“I hope that Shanghai can produce more talents to contribute to the nation and get good results for the national team.”– Spanish connection –Known for having a temper, Xu has reigned over football in Shanghai for three decades.After ending his playing career, he coached several Chinese clubs, including Shanghai Shenhua.But his passion was always for youth development and in 2000 he founded Genbao Football Base, a centre of excellence on Chongming Island, a strip of land northeast of Shanghai.Xu was inspired by Manchester United and their commitment to youth players, epitomised by the “Class of 92”, the crop of homegrown stars that included Ryan Giggs, David Beckham and Paul Scholes.Using many of the talents to come out of his academy, in 2005 Xu founded a club called Shanghai East Asia and made himself president and for a while coach.In 2013, Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG) became the main sponsor and the club was rebranded Shanghai SIPG, now managed by former Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas.But Xu’s influence remains strong at SIPG and in Chinese football in general, and even beyond: Last year he bought the Spanish outfit Lorca FC for a reported 1.3 million euros.Unfashionable Lorca, in the Spanish southeastern region of Murcia, were soon promoted to the Segunda Division, a rung below the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona in La Liga.Reports in Spain and China recently suggested Xu was poised to sell up, but he denies that and said at the launch of Chongming Genbao that he could use the Spanish club to help the development of players coming through the new team.“Maybe I will keep it (Lorca) and maybe it will come in handy,” he said.“Our players (at Chongming) are still too young. If they go and play in the Spanish team, the team will be relegated so I have to wait.”– World Cup hopes –After Shanghai East Asia and Lorca, Xu will do it all over again at Chongming Genbao.He is starting with a side of under-18s, players he hope will one day go on to fulfil President Xi’s dream of making China a great footballing power.Xu will oversee the project but leave the coaching of the team to a trusted lieutenant.“Let’s not mention the CSL, let’s play it step by step,” he said, pleading for patience.“Now the hardest leagues are the fourth and third because older players have all moved there so getting promoted is much harder than before.“My idea is to cultivate football stars, only by making football stars will there be hope for Chinese football.“I hope there will be someone better than Wu Lei in the young ones so that Chinese football has hope at a World Cup.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Xu Genbao, “Shanghai’s godfather of football”, launches his new Chongming Genbao Football Club in Shanghai © AFP / PETER STEBBINGSSHANGHAI, China, Nov 29 – He is known as the “Godfather of Shanghainese football”, is a former player and manager of the Chinese national team, and owns a side in the Spanish league.Now, at the age of 73, the charismatic Xu Genbao is taking on his toughest assignment yet: forming a club from scratch to help China finally become a competitive force in world football.
PSG captain Thiago Silva has claimed Eden Hazard would be a welcome addition in the French capital.Chelsea’s no.10 recently signed a new contract with the Premier League club, but has attracted interest from the super rich Ligue 1 side and ahead of the Blues’ Champions League trip to Paris, Silva lavished praise on the 24-year-old.“He is not just good, he is very good,” he told Nissan.“If he really comes, he will be very welcome.”Hazard joined Chelsea from Lille in 2012 in a £32m deal and it is the 24-year-old who has impressed Silva most in the Champions League so far, adding the playmaker, along with Brazil duo Oscar and Willian must be watched carefully.“All [Chelsea’s] players are very accomplished, but I believe the Brazilians always make the difference, plus Hazard,” he said.Nissan is the official automotive sponsor of the UEFA Champions League Eden Hazard has been linked with a PSG transfer 1