mayor & council
Honorable Michael J. Mahon
A Message from Our Mayor
March / April 2015
The change in seasons is upon us and not a moment too soon after the winter weather we have endured over the past eight weeks. With some sort of wintry mix every three or four days, our Public Works personnel were very busy keeping the streets plowed and safe. This effort is challenging as the back to back snow storms strain man and machine alike. Unnoticed behind the scenes is the planning, scheduling, and coordination necessary for each event. Whether it is preparing snow equipment, notifying contractors, scheduling emergency services, coordinating with the schools, or initiating Code Red calls to keep residents informed; the effort has been repeated time and time again with each snow event. Much of this goes unnoticed unless you have had an emergency. Simple things like a snow plow dispatched to the street for a first aid call and firefighters arriving to shovel a path to the front door along with extra police on duty to shorten response times; or making sure Borough Hall is open and staffed despite a state of emergency and other government offices being closed. All involved deserve our thanks and appreciation for a job well done!
It seems nothing about Fort Monmouth is easy. Saying its complicated doesn't adequately describe the process or the time and effort necessary to move a redevelopment plan forward with each taking more than one year to proceed. We operate on the premise that; 1) Oceanport taxpayers should not bear the cost of redevelopment; 2) Impacts on our schools and environment are primary considerations; 3) The economic feasibility of meeting affordable housing mandates; and 4) What's best for Oceanport? Quite often, these answers place Oceanport at odds with the Fort's redevelopment authority straining an uncomfortable relationship. But the questions above still remain the basis for consideration of any redevelopment proposal from an Oceanport perspective. While the Planning Board is charged with reviewing and granting approvals for site plans, etc.; it falls to the governing body to consider PILOT's, affordable housing contributions, and other elements of any redevelopment agreement. Quite simply, any concession must be offset with equal value returned to the Borough. Every redevelopment proposal must stand on its own. It has to balance. Easier said than done, but we are always working on it and trying to get it right the first time, every time.
Oceanport is a special place and made so by the people who call it “home.” Mr. Bova is one example and I thought it appropriate to mark his passing with a few words from his obituary.
“Joseph Rocco Bova age 96 of Oceanport, passed away peacefully at home on Monday, January 26, 2015. He was born in Long Branch on February 7, 1918 to James and Beatrice Bova. He was a graduate of Long Branch High School. Joe enlisted in the Army on February 14th, 1941, and did his basic training at Ft. Knox, Kentucky, where he was blessed to meet his future wife at a USO party. Joe served with the 1st Armored Division for 4 1/2 years. He was wounded and captured in Africa and was a POW for 27 months, serving in prison camps in Italy, Germany, and Poland and earning two Purple Hearts for the wounds he suffered. He was camp leader of the prisoners at a punishment camp and spent the last three months of his time as a POW on the so-called German death march. Blessed to have survived his Army years, Joe returned home to marry and settle in Oceanport.”
A special place...
Honorable Michael J. Mahon
Mayor, Oceanport Borough, NJ