06 May



Freeholder Director Joseph H. Vicari said some county residents are receiving federal COVID-19 stimulus checks made out to dead relatives.

“The suddenness of the coronavirus outbreak and the federal government’s quick action to bolster the economy and assist residents means that in some cases checks have mistakenly been issued to deceased residents,” Vicari said.

Recently Vicari himself received a check made out to a late relative, who passed away more than two years ago.

“Please do not attempt to cash these checks,” Vicari said. “Instead, simply check the box on the envelope you received and place it back into the mailbox. The check will then be automatically returned to the Treasury Department.”

In recent press interviews, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said relatives and estates of dead people who received checks should return the money.

The federal government mailed out more than 89 million checks in the first three weeks of the program. Overall, more than 150 million checks were mailed.

“With those kind of numbers some mistakes are bound to be made,” Vicari said.
Federal officials and President Donald Trump have said checks issued to the deceased need to be returned.

“Do the right thing,” Vicari said. “Check the box and return the check.”

The federal stimulus program has been especially important to Ocean County, where nearly 30 percent of the population is age 60 or older.

“In these very difficult times, both our seniors and our younger families are depending on these checks to help make ends meet,” he said.

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06 May


Freeholder Director Vicari asks Residents to Remember Teachers

SCHOOLS ARE CLOSED, but Ocean County’s teachers remain on the job educating children during the continued COVID-19 crisis.

“May 4 to May 8 is National Teacher Appreciation Week and I ask everyone to remember the outstanding work our teachers are doing during this state of emergency,” Vicari said.

Vicari said teachers have continued distance learning and are working hard to educate children in all grades.

Governor Phil Murphy announced Monday that all public and private schools will remain closed thru the end of the school year in June.

A lifelong educator who served as a teacher, administrator, principal and superintendent, Vicari said teachers have gone the extra mile with their students.

“Many younger students have missed their favorite teacher and I have had many reports of teachers making personal phone calls to children,” he said.

In some districts, teachers have even taken to their cars and formed small caravans, driving through neighborhoods and waving to students and their families from a safe distance.

“Teachers want their students to know that they haven’t forgotten them. That despite buildings being closed, the children are still a vital part of the school community,” he said.

Vicari said the challenges of distance learning has sometimes been difficult on both educators and students.

“There was very little time to prepare for online classes, but our teachers worked hard to ensure that each and every student is learning and growing,” he said. “Our children will be prepared for whatever lies ahead.”

Vicari also thanked parents who have helped their children, often while juggling a work-at-home schedule themselves.

“None of this has been easy but working together as one Ocean County family we will get thru this crisis and emerge stronger at the end,” he said.

For more details on all of the updates, please visit the Ocean County website –

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01 May

Holzapfel, McGuckin & Catalano Bill Will Establish Emotional Support Hotline for Health Care Worker

10th District legislators will introduce legislation to create a toll-free helpline for first responders and health care workers who are experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Senator Jim Holzapfel and Assemblymen Greg McGuckin and John Catalano recognize the physical and mental strain that this pandemic has placed on New Jersey’s health care heroes and believe this helpline will create an outlet to help those who are struggling to deal with the stresses and emotional trauma of this prolonged crisis. Please visit their site for more information:

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30 Apr


OCEAN COUNTY will gradually reopen its parks for passive recreation along with its golf courses starting Saturday, May 2, according to Ocean County Freeholder Virginia E. Haines, Chairwoman of the Ocean County Department of Parks and Recreation.

“I am pleased to announce the reopening of several of our County parks starting Saturday. This includes our two golf courses and our natural lands,” Haines said. “There will be restrictions in place as we go forward to maintain social distancing. These restrictions are for the health and safety of everyone returning to our parks and open spaces. “These locations are open to the public for walking, jogging, biking,” Haines said. “It’s all passive recreation which allows for social distancing.

“It’s important to note that this action in no way means the coronavirus pandemic is over,” she said. “Rather we want to provide safe and large open spaces for our residents to spend time outside, especially with warm weather coming, and these steps will allow that.”

“It’s important that we continue to follow social distancing rules. We all need to remember that our actions don’t affect just us, they affect our family, they affect our health care workers, they affect our emergency responders, they affect the workers at our grocery stores,” Vicari said. “We need to all continue to do our part to stop the spread of this virus.”

Parks that are scheduled to reopen on May 2 are Wells Mills County Park, Waretown, John C. Bartlett Jr. County Park at Berkeley Island, Jakes Branch County Park, Beachwood, Ocean County Park and Lake Shenandoah County Park, Lakewood, Patriots County Park, Jackson, and Freedom Fields, Little Egg Harbor Township. The Ocean County Golf Course at Atlantis, in Little Egg Harbor Township and Forge Pond County Golf Course in Brick Township will reopen for play. In addition, the Barnegat Branch Trail which starts at Burr Street in Barnegat Township and travels north toward Toms River will also open to the public.

For further details for park and golf course hours please visit:

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30 Apr

NJGOP Virtual Reception with RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel

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27 Apr

RNC Convention – August 2020!

RNC Convention – August 2020!

As the RNC Convention approaches, State Party is getting ready and planning an exciting time for the New Jersey delegation! To stay connected and up-to-date on the latest convention news, you can share this link with your county: We’ll be announcing more in the coming weeks! 

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23 Apr

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THE OCEAN COUNTY Board of Chosen Freeholders recently recognized the week of April 19 as “National Library Week” in Ocean County and formally recognized April 21 as “National Library Workers Day” in recognition of the valuable contributions made by all library workers each and every day toward the betterment of the communities.

For more information on what online resources are available, visit the Ocean County Library’s website

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22 Apr

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As we continue to practice social distancing, NJGOP will be holding their second Digital Day of Action on Saturday, May 2nd to continue voter contact and register new Republican voters across the state.

Volunteers can use this link to sign up:  ( NJGOP Digital Day of Action!

Leading up to NJGOP’s second Digital Day of Action, they will be providing a state-wide virtual volunteer training with multiple sessions:

  • Saturday, April 25th, 10:00am
  • Monday, April 27th, 5:30pm
  • Wednesday, April 29th, 5:30pm
  • Saturday, May 2nd, 10:00am

Anyone interested in joining one of the Virtual Volunteer Training sessions can sign up here:   (  NJGOP Virtual Volunteer Training!

Any questions, please contact Roxy Coburger, State Political Director, NJ Republican State Committee    732.770.7231

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20 Apr

OC Household Hazardous Waste Cancelled Upcoming Events

The Ocean County Department of Solid Waste Management has cancelled the following upcoming events until further notice due to the coronavirus pandemic:

• The Household Hazardous Waste event scheduled for May 9 in Stafford Township. A new date for the Lakewood and Stafford Township events will be determined at a later date.

The following Residential Document Shredding dates have been postponed:

  • April 11 – Berkeley Township
  • April 18 – Plumsted Township
  • April 23 – Surf City Borough (St. Francis Health Fair)
  • May 6 – Little Egg Harbor Township (LEH Senior Expo)
  • May 16 – Jackson Township
  • May 30 – Seaside Heights

“It is unfortunate that we have to cancel these events due to the coronavirus, but it is best for the health and safety of our employees and our residents to reschedule them for a later date,” said Ocean County Freeholder Deputy Director Gary Quinn, who serves as liaison to the Ocean County Department of Solid Waste Management.

In addition, the “special waste” drop-off areas at both the Northern Recycling Center in Lakewood (Building 68) and the Southern Recycling Center in Manahawkin (Building 105) will be closed to the public until further notice. “Special waste” includes items such as paint, fluorescent light bulbs, oil & oil filters, batteries, antifreeze, e-waste, rigid plastics, thermostats, books & phone books, shredded paper, and shrink wrap.

The single stream drop offs for cardboard, paper, plastic bottles, jars and jugs, glass containers and aluminum, tin or steel cans will remain open to the public, but are closed on Saturdays.

“Even though residents may have to hold onto some of their recyclables a little longer as we work through these times, I want to still encourage everyone to continue to recycle items like bottles and paper during their daily routines,” said Ocean County Freeholder Director Joseph H. Vicari. “Recycling is still very important, even if we have to restrict how we do it for a little while.”

Information on all of the upcoming cancellations can be found on the department’s website, or on the Facebook page @OCSWM. Information is also noted on Recycle Coach, or via email for residents who are registered to the mailing list.

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20 Apr



WHILE THE coronavirus pandemic may have us cooped up inside our homes, Freeholder Director Joseph H. Vicari reminded residents that efforts to protect the environment are still crucial to our future.

“Earth Day is April 22 and I ask everyone to join me in marking this important date,” Vicari said. “While we may not be able to take part in the usual traditions of cleaning beaches or planting seedlings, we must not forget the importance of Earth Day.”

Vicari renewed his call to protect the environment from the sudden influx of rubber gloves that many people are dropping onto the ground rather than disposing of properly.

“Not only are used rubber gloves a health threat during this pandemic, they are also a threat to the environment,” he said.

While rubber gloves are an important tool in stopping the spread of the coronavirus, they must be disposed of properly.
He suggested residents keep plastic bags in their vehicles so used gloves can be placed in the bags and thrown out once residents return home.

Vicari also praised supermarkets and other stores that have added extra trash receptacles to their parking lots specifically for the gloves.

The Freeholder Director said the ongoing lockdown has made people in general more appreciative of the outdoors and Ocean County’s natural environment.

“We always took a walk along the beach or a hike through many of our county parks for granted,” Vicari said. “Now that we can’t fully enjoy the outdoors we realize how important these activities are to ourselves and our families. We must protect these natural treasures.”

Ocean County regularly cleans its storm drains in a year-round effort to protect the Barnegat Bay.

“Please do not throw plastic bottles, cigarette butts or any other trash onto the ground,” Vicari said. “Chances are anything on the ground will eventually end up in a storm drain and could pollute the bay.”

The Freeholders also encourage residents and business to be responsible with the use of lawn fertilizers and recommend the use of an Exceptional Quality fertilizer as deemed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency.

OCEANGRO, an organic nitrogen fertilizer produced by the Ocean County Utilities Authority has been found by the EPA to “pose no reasonable risk to the environment or human health.”

OCEANGRO is available at farm markets throughout the county. Visit for more information.

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