Freehold Borough may permit street signs to honor accomplished individuals

FREEHOLD – Borough Council members in Freehold Borough are taking action to implement an honorary street naming program in the municipality.

On April 5, council members introduced an ordinance that will, if adopted, amend the borough’s streets, sidewalks and public places ordinance by adding a chapter that addresses honorary street naming.

The ordinance states the council believes there should be a program established which will permit borough citizens to honor individuals who have made a significant contribution to Freehold Borough by giving those individuals an honorary street designation through the placement of special signs on existing streets.

A public hearing on the ordinance is scheduled for April 19. The council may adopt the ordinance that evening.

The ordinance establishes an application process for an honorary street naming and includes a $250 fee to cover the costs associated with an administrative review of the application. At least two-thirds of the property owners abutting the street with the proposed honor would be required to sign a petition in favor of the action.

According to the ordinance, an honorary street name will not duplicate an official street name, and the name of an individual proposed for the honor will be considered if borough officials determine it is in the public interest to honor the individual or the individual’s family for historical or commemorative reasons.

The name of an individual will not be given consideration unless that individual portrays what the ordinance states is a positive image.

When an honorary street name is assigned to a street or to a segment of a street, the street or street segment will retain its official name for official and legal purposes, according to the ordinance.

The honorary designation will be temporary and will not last longer than 180 days, according to municipal officials.

According to the ordinance, only one honorary street name will be in effect at a time and will not be repeated. Roads that are owned by the federal government, the state or Monmouth County are not subject to honorary naming.

To distinguish an honorary street sign from a primary street sign, borough officials will have the honorary street sign designed and mounted in a distinct manner that does not distract from the primary street sign.

Residents and business owners in the vicinity of a proposed honorary designation will receive a letter from the borough notifying them of the proposed action, according to the ordinance.