HOLMDEL – Municipal officials in Holmdel have adopted an ordinance which formally codifies a public board that has been in existence for several years.
During a meeting on Feb. 8, the members of the Township Committee – Mayor Greg Buontempo, Deputy Mayor Prakash Santhana, Committeewoman Cathy Weber, Committeeman D.J. Luccarelli and Committeeman Rocco Impreveduto voted “yes” on a motion to adopt an ordinance which establishes a section of the municipal code titled Municipal Alliance to Prevent Alcoholism and Drug Abuse.
Municipal officials said Holmdel has had an alliance for several years. They said the ordinance that was adopted on Feb. 8 was a formal measure to ensure that Holmdel and its alliance are in compliance with the requirements of a grant.
Brian O’Malley, who is Holmdel’s deputy clerk and public information officer, explained that the alliance grant is awarded to Holmdel by Monmouth County through the Governor’s Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. The grant referred to by township officials is for 2022.
“The grant received by the municipal alliance is intended for substance abuse awareness, education and prevention services to the residents of Holmdel. This is a yearly grant on a five-year cycle. The township provides updates about its program to the Monmouth County Municipal Alliance coordinator, which plays a role in the renewal of the grant for the following year,” O’Malley said.
The mission of the alliance “is to provide consultation, programs, training and resources to the community with the goal of preventing and reducing the use and abuse of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs,” according to the ordinance.
Members of the alliance will be appointed by the governing body. Membership may include, but is not limited to the Township Committee’s appointed representative; the police chief; the president of the Board of Education; the superintendent of schools; a student assistance coordinator; a representative of the PTA; a representative of the local bargaining unit for teachers.
And, a representative of the Chamber of Commerce; a representative from the local court system; a representative of local civic associations; representatives of local religious groups; individuals who have been impacted by alcoholism and/or drug abuse, including individuals who have been directly affected by their own, or a family’s member’s abuse or addictions.
Also, representatives of labor unions; representatives of the media; private citizens with interest or experience in issues concerning alcohol and/or drug abuse; and/or representatives of public and private organizations involved in the treatment of alcohol and drug related problems.
The members of the alliance will serve as volunteers.
The alliance will work to create a network of community leaders, private citizens, and representatives from public and private human services agencies who are dedicated to a comprehensive and coordinated effort to promote and support drug and alcohol prevention and education programs and related activities, with an emphasis on all ages along the developmental life processes, according to the ordinance.
The alliance will also conduct an assessment of its community to determine the needs of the community in relation to alcoholism and drug abuse issues; identify existing efforts and services acting to reduce alcoholism and drug abuse; and assist the municipality in acquiring funds for alliance programs, according to the ordinance.