The New Jersey Turnpike Authority has stated that they will remove the anti-terrorism fencing from the Great egg Harbor Bridge sometime in 2013, but State Senator Jeff VanDrew wants it done sooner. According to the Press of Atlantic city, VanDrew will said he will inspect the fencing with Charlie McKenna, a former director of Homeland Security for the state. The senator is pushing for removal of the fence by Memorial Day Weekend or July 4th of this year, instead of waiting for the Turnpike Authority’s timetable which will include reconstruction of the southbound bridge next year.
The search continues for a Middle Township man missing since January of last year. On Wednesday, the Cape May County prosecutor’s office conducted an extensive search of wooded areas off Route 47 in Green Creek. Samuel D. Schmucker, 25, was reported missing during the first week of January 2011 and investigators have been following new leads in the case. Schmucker is described as a white male, about 5 feet 8 inches tall and 190 pounds with hazel eyes and brown hair. Anyone with information about his disappearance is asked to call Middle Township Police at 609-465-8700.
The Wildwood City Commission met on Wednesday to adopt several ordinances on second reading. Commissioner Pete Byron told Coastal Broadcasting that the commissioners established a Beach Utility, based on the model of Cape May City. The utility will give Wildwood more flexibility from a financial standpoint, as monies earned from beach-related services can be funneled through the utility. Wildwood will offer beach boxes for rent this summer. A rate of $400 per season was established. Beach cabanas were dropped from the ordinance, as the city decided not to get involved in their rental.
The Cape May County Republican Organization met on Wednesday night at the Cape May County Airport to select their candidates for November. Freeholder Lenny Desiderio will be running for re-election and energized the crowd with his enthusiasm. Freeholder Susan Sheppard from Ocean City was chosen to run for Surrogate. W. Robert Hentges is stepping down from the position after serving as CMC County Surrogate for 40 years.
The paving of Route 50 in Greenfield has begun but a new traffic light at the intersection of Hope Corson Road is in jeopardy. The Upper Township Gazette reports that local and state officials had agreed to installing a traffic signal at the busy intersection in conjunction with the Route 50 paving project. Apparently at issue is who will pay the electric bill to operate the traffic signal. Township officials plan to lobby NJDOT until the issue is resolved. The Route 50 resurfacing project will be completed by the end of May.
Governor Chris Christie is battling over the budget once again. The Office of Legislative Services disagrees with tax and fee revenue figures quoted by the governor, to the tune of over a half-billion dollars. The State Senate’s Budget Committee heard testimony from the OLS on Tuesday and were told not to expect Christie’s revenue estimates for fiscal year 2012 and beyond. The governor was in Atlantic City and voiced his disagreement to the findings of the state agency.
The Cape May County Republican Organization will choose their slate of candidates for November on Wednesday night. The convention will be held at the NASW Museum at the Cape May County Airport, and will be streamed live over the internet on www.987thecoast.com. Republican party officials want their selection process to be transparent and will tally secret ballots from the county’s 16 municipalities make their choices.
Fishermen are welcome to the Cox Hall Creek Wildlife Management Area, formerly Ponderlodge. The NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife released 540 trout on Tuesday into the lake at the Lower Township park and local officials were on-hand for the event. Included in the release of trout averaging 10 inches, were about 50 “bonus” fish that weigh as much as 6 pounds. The man made pond at Cox Hall Creek goes to a depth of about 14 feet.
When the Mega Millions Jackpot numbers were drawn Tuesday night, not one player could be found with a winning ticket. The top prize for this Friday’s drawing is estimated to be $476 million, the largest jackpot in Mega Millions history. Lottery officials estimate the odds of winning at 1 in 176 million. Tuesday night’s numbers were 9, 19, 34, 44, 51 and Mega Ball 24.
The battle for a Middle Township committee seat in the fall will feature candidates who are familiar to voters. Democrat Bill Sturm told the Middle Township Gazette that he plans on running against republican Mayor Dan Lockwood for a township committee seat in November. Sturm and Lockwood will be the likely candidates for the two major parties come election time; a primary will be held in June. Sturm says he will file his petition with the clerk’s office by the April 2 deadline.