Monmouth County News Briefs, Feb. 2


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After 50 years, New Jersey may finally have a permanent museum and memorial honoring the history and sacrifice of firefighters.

Assemblyman Ron Dancer’s bill (A-5075/S-4001) that appropriates $200,000 to help fund the museum and its projects was recently signed into law by Gov. Phil Murphy. The state has been unsuccessful at obtaining funding or finding a permanent location for the museum for the last five decades, according to a press release from the state Assembly Republicans.

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The new law removes the New Jersey Fire Museum from New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection oversight and creates an independent commission to take over those responsibilities. The commission can address budgeting issues and manage the museum’s expansion and development, according to the press release.

“A commission that is committed to New Jersey’s firefighting history will be in a better position to procure a stable home for the museum, which will provide more opportunities to engage and educate the public,” said Dancer (R-Monmouth, Ocean, Middlesex, Burlington). “From preserving historic fire equipment to honoring our fallen heroes, the museum serves an important mission and deserves a dedicated space.”

Since 2015, the fire museum has displayed its donated memorabilia in a private warehouse provided by Upper Freehold Township, according to the press release.


New Jersey Assembly Democrats have reported that Gov. Phil Murphy signed a bill into law that is aimed at reducing the harmful effects of neonicotinoid pesticides on pollinators.

According to a press release, research suggests neonicotinoids have an adverse impact on pollinating insects and may contribute to the disappearance of bee populations and colony collapse disorder.

Neonicotinoids work as neurotoxins attacking the nervous systems of these insects. These chemicals pollute pollen and nectar, which is a threat to bee populations.

New Jersey’s 20,000 bee colonies represent a $7 million honeybee industry and contribute to the successful production of nearly $200 million worth of fruits and vegetables annually, according to the press release.

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) concluded that certain neonicotinoids used on farms and gardens can harm honeybees, bumblebees and solitary bees. Nearby crops and wild plants can also be contaminated and the insecticides can accumulate in soil. Neonicotinoids also have been detected in streams, honey, garden flowers and wildflowers, according to the press release.

Under the new law (formerly bill A-2070), the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection would adopt, within one year, rules and regulations classifying neonicotinoid pesticides as restricted-use pesticides.

Also included in the new statute, beginning Oct. 31, 2023, a person would be restricted from selling, offering for sale, or using within the state any neonicotinoid pesticide, unless the pesticide is registered and will only be applied by a licensed pesticide applicator to an agricultural plant, according to the press release.


The Monmouth County Park System is seeking entries into its Creative Arts Festival. This juried art show and sale is open to artists of every medium. Those interested in entering are invited to submit images for consideration.

The application fee is $15 per person. Rules and entry form are available at Accepted artists will have a 10-foot x 10-foot booth space for a fee of $50. The entry deadline is March 7, according to a press release.

The Creative Arts Festival will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 7 at Thompson Park, Lincroft. The festival will feature fine art and craft vendors, live music, creative activities and food vendors.

Thompson Park is home to the park system’s Creative Arts Center, which hosts fine arts and craft classes throughout the year, including ceramics, pottery, jewelry and painting.

To learn more about the Creative Arts Festival, call 732-842-4000, ext. 3343. For persons with hearing impairment, the park system TTY/TDD number is 711.


New Jersey Human Services has announced that teenagers across the state can begin submitting entries for the 27th annual New Jersey Teen Media Contest, which highlights Human Services’ mission to support families.

The contest, run by Human Services’ Division of Family Development, is open to all New Jersey middle school and high school students. This year, the contest will once again accept entries in the hand-painted/hand-drawn and written word categories, according to a press release.

This year’s contest challenges teens to illustrate – through art or the written word – the following theme: What is your dream and how are your parents/loved ones helping you get there?

“We are excited to once again extend this opportunity to students to express themselves through art. We know the stress this (coronavirus) pandemic has put on young people and we hope this will help shift their focus on the goals they hope to achieve, and serve as good reminder of the love and support that surrounds them,” said Acting Commissioner Sarah Adelman.

All entries must be postmarked no later than March 31. Staff from the Division of Family Development, with representatives from other organizations and/or corporations in the state, will judge the contest, according to the press release.

Winners will be selected and prizes awarded in first, second and third place in the middle school and high school groups, for each of the two entry categories. Winning entries from the contest will be included in the 2023 Office of Child Support Calendar.

The 2022 calendar can be viewed or downloaded from to serve as inspiration for teens. The website also provides the official rules, frequently asked questions, entry forms and other contest information.

Teachers and administrators can register their school by visiting, by contacting Nicolette Omelczuk at 732-833-3783, or by emailing School registration is not required for direct student entry. For complete submission guidelines, visit

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