Township, school district to seek Safe Routes money

PLUMSTED – The Plumsted Township Committee and the Board of Education are working together to jointly submit a grant application for the federally funded Safe Routes to School Program.

Mayor Ron Dancer said that based on the federal enabling legislation, no matching funds are required from either the school district or the township. All traffic education, enforcement and infrastructure projects funded under this grant program must be located within 2 miles of a school. The township and school district can request up to $350,000 in federal aid funds from the Safe Routes to School Program to construct sidewalks within the walking distance to the community’s schools.

Dancer said the Township Committee is also preparing to submit a shared service grant application for a central motor fuel purchase/distribution system with the school district, fire company, police department and first aid squad to reduce gas and diesel fuel costs for more taxpayer savings.

In other business, senior citizens in Plumsted who need assistance in completing and filing their federal and state income tax returns in advance of theApril 15 deadline may call (toll free) the Ocean County Office of Senior Services at 1-800- 668-4899.An experienced and trained volunteer tax aide is available at the Plumsted library on Fridays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (with the exception of Good Friday) by appointment. The tax aide will provide one-on-one assistance to eligible Plumsted senior citizen taxpayers in completing their federal and state tax returns.

The mayor said the New Jersey League ofMunicipalities, representing all 566 municipalities in the state, has announced that three scholarships in the amount of $1,000 each will be awarded to high school seniors entering college this fall. Public, private and home-schooled students are all eligible. To be considered for the $1,000 scholarship award, students are to write an essay on the theme "What My Mayor and Governing Body Do Best." The essay should be about 500 words and must be submitted to the mayor at 121 Evergreen Road, New Egypt, no later than March 15.

In addition to financially assisting the students with their college education, the scholarship competition advances the virtues and heightens public awareness of elected and volunteer positions in municipal government, according to the mayor. Students may contact their elected officials for interviews and ask them questions prior to writing and submitting their essay by calling (609) 758-2241, ext. 102. Applications for the scholarships are available at the municipal clerk’s office, 121 Evergreen Road, or by calling the clerk’s office at (609) 758-2241, ext. 101.