Tri-Town News news briefs, Aug. 11

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When voters in Jackson go to the polls on Nov. 2 to vote for state representatives, they will also vote to elect four members of the Jackson School District Board of Education.

July 26 was the deadline for New Jersey residents to file a nominating petition to run for a seat on a board of education. Elected school board members serve without compensation.

A total of 11 Jackson residents have stepped forward and made public their desire to serve on the board that oversees the operation of the school district.

Nine residents are running for three available three-year terms and two residents are running for one available one-year term on the board.

Seeking the three-year terms are current board members Gus Acevedo, Tzvi Herman and John Spalthoff, and Tina M. Kas, Erica Osmond, Megan Gardella, Akxsi Keegan, Jessica Edwards and Giuseppe Palmeri.

Seeking the one-year term are Allison Barocas and BonnieSue Rosenwald.


Jackson Township Council members have authorized the expenditure of more than $300,000 to purchase 10 vehicles for the Jackson Police Department.

On July 27, council Vice President Martin Flemming, Councilman Alexander Sauickie, Councilman Nino Borrelli and Councilman Stephen Chisholm voted “yes” on motions to authorize the purchases of the vehicles. Council President Andrew Kern was absent.

The council authorized the purchase of six police interceptor sport utility vehicles in the amount of $209,002 ($34,834 each); the purchase of three Ford Bronco vehicles in the amount of $85,098 ($28,366 each); and the purchase of one Ford F-250 truck in the amount of $54,999. All 10 vehicles will be purchased from Beyer Ford in Morris Township.


The Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) has announced that Cynthia Gruskos, senior assistant to the president and Board of Trustees of Brookdale Community College, is the recipient of the 2021 Northeast Region Professional Board Staff Member Award.

The Professional Board Staff Member Award was established in 2001 and is given to any board staff member to recognize exemplary service to boards, according to a press release from Brookdale, which is the county college of Monmouth County.

The ACCT chairman will present the award at the annual awards gala during the 52nd annual ACCT Leadership Congress, which will take place in San Diego, Calif., in October.

“Cynthia has provided outstanding support of the board in her seven years in the position,” said Dr. Henry Cram, chairman of the Board of Trustees. “Over the last two years, her efforts in assisting the board in the government of meetings in a virtual format and migrating board materials to a cloud-based portal have been invaluable.”


The Mental Health Association in New Jersey is providing a new virtual wellness center that offers no-cost groups and workshops statewide to individuals interested in day-to-day wellness, support for substance use disorder, and strategies for improving mental health.

Called United by Wellness, the center can be accessed online or by call-in. More than 45 groups and workshops are offered daily, including weekends. Among the groups are Healthy Habits, Meditation, LGBTQ, Young Adult, Anxiety and Depression Support Groups, Grief and COVID, Too Much Stuff, Virtual Job Interviews, Peer Support Career Information, and Grief and Recovery, according to a press release.

Groups are organized into four “communities” for like-minded people with similar goals, but participants are not limited to a specific track. The communities are general well-being; coping skills; co-occurring mental health and substance use; and a community for individuals who have a disorder who are seeking employment. Staff providing services are culturally diverse certified peer specialists, including some who are bilingual and facilitating groups in Spanish.

For more information about United by Wellness, call 609-652-3800, ext. 303, or visit