Upper Freehold tried to reduce spending in 2009


The downturned economy influenced many Upper Freehold Township actions and decisions in 2009.

While it remains to be seen how the past year’s efforts to reduce spending will affect township operations this year, officials ended the year on a high note — signing an agreement with the Board of Chosen Freeholders for Monmouth County to assume control of and pay for improvements to a dangerous stretch of Sharon Station Road. Here’s a month-to-month look at what else took place in Upper Freehold in 2009.


The Township Committee unanimously voted for Steve Alexander to serve again as mayor and Stanley Moslowski Jr. to serve as deputy mayor. Dr. Robert Frascella was sworn in to the take the committee seat of David Reed, who opted not to run for a second term.

For the first time ever, Allentown sent the Hope Fire Company, which serves both Upper Freehold and the borough, a $5,865 bill for its water use and billed it $1,600 for public sewer service even though the company uses its own septic system. Upper Freehold took issue with Allentown over the new charges as well as not paying its fair share of other fire department costs.

The township discovered two landfills on a 45-acre Breza Road parcel that was slated for preservation or as the location for “My Farm,” a housing project that would help the township fulfill its Council on Affordable Housing (COAH) obligation.


Residents appeared regularly before the Township Committee to complain about the dangerous conditions of Sharon Station Road. On Feb. 26 meeting, the governing body unanimously passed a resolution to have the county take over the road.


The governing body cut the previous year’s municipal budget by more than $1 million to total $5.4 million in 2010. All employees received a 10 percent pay cut, with the exception of fire department personnel and the Drug Alliance coordinator, a position offset by a county grant. There were several layoffs. The reduction meant a $36 decrease in the municipal portion of the tax bill for the average homeowner.

The township decided it still needs about 98 acres of passive recreational space.

Alexander decided to run for a third term on the governing body and Committeeman Bob Faber decided to run for a second term. No other Republicans or Democratic candidates filed to run in the primary election.

The township considered allowing a new cemetery to be created along Route 524.


Upper Freehold and Allentown voters passed the $32.5 million Upper Freehold Regional School District budget.

Tractor Supply Co., the largest retail farm and ranch store chain in the United States, received approval to open a new store in Upper Freehold.


The Township Committee voted unanimously against acquiring the 45 acres of land along Breza Road containing the two landfills.

The township decided to wait as long as possible to repeal its sex offender residency ordinance. Alexander said he would like to wait until Galloway Township, which had a similar ordinance struck down by the Supreme Court, ran out of time to file an appeal before rescinding Upper Freehold’s ordinance.


The N.J. State Police investigated a June 22 head-on collision on Sharon Station Road that claimed the life of 44-year-old Christine M. Squires. The Plumsted woman was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash that involved her 2002 Pontiac Grand Prix and a 1989 Mack tanker truck.

The township approved the creation of a 6,000-square-foot retail sales and office building on Old York Road near the easterly bypass.


Township officials began a crackdown on nonresidents taking their recyclables to the public works yard behind the municipal building on Route 539.


A group of residents proposed creating an independent, nonprofit volunteer organization to run basketball programs in Upper Freehold, noting that basketball is the only township youth program that is run by paid directors.

The township started looking into alternatives to courtesy busing for some Upper Freehold students living less than two miles from school when it was determined that the service would cost over $80,000 in municipal taxes this year.


Longtime Animal Control Officer Mary Klink , 48, died unexpectedly Sept. 10.


Township employee Debra Sopronyi resigned to become the municipal clerk of Hightstown. She served as Upper Freehold’s purchasing agent, assistant to the administrator and secretary to the Environmental Development Committee. Sopronyi said while she truly enjoyed her job in Upper Freehold, she had to leave due to the salary reduction earlier in the year.


Voters re-elected Alexander and Faber to the Township Committee in the general election.

The governing body expanded the public water service area and amended an agreement with Aqua Water Co. to include the 24-acre Mark Harbourt soccer complex.


To spread out the recreation cost burden, the Township Committee raised recreation fees for nonresidents up to $50, depending on the program.