Monthly Archives: November 2010

STUDY: OVER $700,000 SAVED IF CAPE SCHOOLS MERGE

A meeting was held on Monday where a school merger was discussed for West Cape May, Cape May, and Cape May Point. The report shows the school districts could save $700,000 to send all of the students to Cape May Elementary School. All three towns, like all of the county, show a decline in population that is expected to continue in the future. It is expected that a number of teachers would lose their jobs in the transition, as the report shows Cape May Elementary School would only need to add a couple of teachers to support the additional student load.

INDICTMENT HANDED DOWN IN SEXUAL ASSAULT CASE

Atlantic County Prosecutor Ted Housel

Atlantic County Prosecutor Ted Housel

An Atlantic County Grand Jury indicted a Cumberland County man on numerous charges including first-degree aggravated sexual assault, second-degree attempted aggravated sexual assault, first-degree armed robbery and second-degree burglary, for his alleged Aug. 3 attack on an elderly woman at her Somers Point home, Atlantic County Prosecutor Ted Housel announced.

Marvin Sherwood, 28, of Finimore Street in Vineland, was also indicted on several weapons offenses including possession of a weapon, a knife, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose and unlawful possession of a weapon, third-degree aggravated assault, third-degree tampering with physical evidence and assault. In addition, he was indicted on charges of third-degree terroristic threats for allegedly threatening to kill the victim if she went to police or to the hospital, said Chief Assistant Prosecutor Ellen Loughney who presented the case to the Grand Jury.

The morning of the incident Somers Point Police responded to a 911 call at 5:30 a.m. for a report that a woman had been attacked in her home. The victim, whose name is not being released due to the nature of the crime, was taken by ambulance to Shore Memorial Hospital where she was treated and then released later that day. Both armed robbery and aggravated sexual assault are crimes of the first-degree and carry a maximum prison sentence upon conviction of 20 years and $200,000 in fines.

MENENDEZ TO INTRODUCE LEGISLATION AGAINST HIDDEN DEBIT CARD FEES

Robert MenendezWith the busiest shopping season of the year underway, and with an estimated $427.5 billion expected to be placed on prepaid debit cards by American consumers next year, U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) is targeting hidden and excessive fees associated with these cards. Menendez recently sent a letter to Presidential Special Assistant Elizabeth Warren, seeking to work with her and the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on issuing commonsense regulations for prepaid cards that would protect consumers relying on them for purchases from getting fleeced.

In addition, Menendez announced that he will introduce new legislation before the end of the Congressional session to eliminate certain prepaid debit card fees and provide consumers with full, upfront disclosure of fees before they purchase the cards.

“For too many consumers using prepaid debit cards, Black Friday may have put them in the red because of surprise and unreasonable fees,” said Menendez. “Responsible consumers are finding out the hard way that the purchasing power of these cards is often much less than the dollar amount they loaded onto them. Consumers should be equipped with full information about cards they buy, and we should eliminate some of the most egregious fees, which is what I intend to accomplish through legislation and working with federal consumer protection regulators.”

Prepaid cards are typically reloadable plastic cards used as substitutes for checking accounts, debit cards, or credit cards. Many come with a mountain of fees and very poor disclosure of those fees, terms, and conditions. They typically do not have the same guaranteed consumer protections as credit cards and debit cards, although they are marketed and used as substitutes for credit cards and debit cards.

CONVENTION HALL GETS TORN DOWN IN CAPE MAY

Photo from the Cape May County Herald

Photo from the Cape May County Herald

The demolition of Convention Hall in Cape May began today. The old building is being torn down to make way for a new building that is scheduled to open by May 2012. Cape May County Herald report Jack Fichter tells Coastal Broadcasting the Solarium was the first item to get brought down. The building must be brought down completely by the end of the year. Albrecht and Heun is doing this portion of the work.

FORMER WILDWOOD COACH GETS ONE YEARS SALARY

Former Wildwood head basketball coach Mario Montanero will be getting a full year’s salary. School officials told Coastal Broadcasting that the decision was an economic one for the school, compared to pay court costs. Montanero was let go as head basketball coach two weeks ago. A deadline for applications takes place tomorrow, at which point the school will make a decision on a replacement.

POWERBALL NEARING $100 MILLION

A huge drawing will take place this week in the Powerball Lottery. The grand prize is up to $95 million. The Saturday numbers netted no winners. The next drawing will take place on Wednesday. The state’s other big lottery, Mega Millions, is up to $52 million and will have new numbers released on Tuesday.

IPHONE APP DEBUTS TO PROVIDE TRAFFIC TIPS

The state is the first in the country to release an IPhone App regarding traffic delays and construction. It is the same information provided through the 511 traffic text line. Audio versions of the alert are available, to enable a driver to safely get to his or her destination while driving hands free. The application is expected to be rolled out at a later date for other phone types.

CONVENTION TRAFFIC IS UP IN ATLANTIC CITY

Finally some good news for Atlantic City. More people are planning to head to the resort for conventions than over the past few years. There has been a decline in convention traffic with the recession, but those numbers are swinging back upwards. The AP reports a 73 percent increase in future booked convention traffic than at the same time last year.

MAYOR AGAIN: DEMARZO KEEPS MAYOR’S POST IN WILDWOOD

The Wildwood City Commission met just before the Thanksgiving holiday and voted to keep Gary DeMarzo in the mayor’s seat in the community.  DeMarzo and Commissioner Chip Harshaw both voted in favor of keeping DeMarzo as mayor, even though the commission agreed back in August to give the position to Commissioner Al Brannen.  Brannen told the Press of Atlantic City after the decision that he was quote “set up”.  Harshaw told The Press that there are too many important issues that the current mayor needs to carry on.