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UPDATE! Wednesday Briefs From WOBM News

News from Ocean & Monmouth counties and around New Jersey.

Brick Mayor Steve Acropolis
Brick Mayor Steve Acropolis (Jason Allentoff/Townsquare Media NJ)

BRICK – Brick Township Mayor Steve Acropolis presents his proposed $82 millionĀ  operating budget for 2012 that calls for laying off 77 public works department employees. Acropolis says the move would save almost $8million. Council President John Ducey is against the plan and he says the Council will examine other ways to save money.

OCEANPORT – The New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association is close to finalizing an agreement to take control of Monmouth Park racetrack. Report say the group has agreed on lease terms with the New Jersey Sports And Exposition Authority. It should be finalized very soon.

TOMS RIVER – A Stafford-based home contractor heads for trial, accused of fleecing investors for more than $1,000,000. David Haugland was indicted this morning in Ocean County Superior Court on charges of theft, money laundering, and issuing bad checks. Prosecutors contend that Haugland conned investors – and tried to float a fraudulent loan – ostensibly to build homes on three Long Beach Island properties that neither he nor his company owned or controlled. Haugland is free on $75,000 bail.

TRENTON – A lawyer and an investment broker from Marlboro head for sentencing for scheming to skim more than $2,500,000 from mortgage lenders through false applications. Attorney Mark Bellotti, 55, and broker Jonathan Domash, 41, pleaded guilty Tuesday here to charges of theft by deception. Bellotti admitted to an additional count of conspiracy. Prosecutors will recommend five years in prison for Bellotti, and 364 days in jail with five years’ probation for Domash. A third defendant from Hillsborough appears headed for probation.
JACKSON – Solar energy returns to the talking stages in the township’s school district. Officials reportedly are weighing the advantages of renting school roof space to private solar contractors in exchange for discounted energy costs. If an agreement can be developed, the renting firms would receive solar energy credits. School officials anticipate paying about $3,750,000 to power the district next year unless methods are developed to reduce costs. Voters last year rejected a $7,000,000 solar power referendum.

TRENTON – ANew Jersey police officer who calls Matawan home is sentenced to three years in state prison for stealing cocaine from an evidence room he ran. Albert Annuzzi, 47, must serve two years before parole eligibility in accord with the plea agreement he struck last month. Annuzzi served 22 years on the Piscataway police force. He admitted swiping the drugs for personal use.

TOMS RIVER – That whooping cough advisory we told you about last week is developing some legs. Ocean County health officials report 14 cases, mostly in northern-end communities including Lakewood. But they don’t rule out any community for vulnerability to the bacterial lung infection. It’s hazardous for any age, but especially for infants. The Advisory Committee on Immunization recommends a five-stage d-Tap inoculation series. Four shots are given between two and 18 months of age, and a booster is given between ages four and six.

MAYS LANDING – Four months after a suspect was jailed in connection with a fatal shooting in Atlantic City, four more are rounded up. Atlantic County Prosecutor Ted Housel today announced the arrests in connection with the death of Corleone Hayes last November, one of two homicides in the city on the same night. Haneef Graves, 29, has been in custody since his arrest.

BARNEGAT – A 25-year-old from Barnegat is charged with a pair of home burglaries in the past month. Police say they charged Kerri Conroy with theft after tracing a laptop that vanished from a Village Drive home to a third party who claimed to have bought it from Conroy. A Deck Street resident accuses Conroy of taking $210 from a purse while in the victim’s house to use the phone.

ATLANTIC CITY – Atlantic City’s Steel Pier receives final approval for a $6.1 million loan. The pier’s owners will use the money from the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority to renovate and expand the historic site. The three-year project is expected to cost about $102 million. It calls for new rides, a midway and a food court.

TOMS RIVER – Plans for a homeless shelter on the grounds of a church in the township are being shelved. Leaders of the First Assembly Church of God reportedly got a cool reception to the idea at a community forum that included homeowners beyond the mandatory 200-foot notification radius. Church elders sought parish and community agreement, and support for the mission from local, state and federal government sources. Space in the Youth Ministry Building would have temporarily housed up to 50 men and women.

LONG BRANCH – A Long Branch man remains in the Monmouth County Jail, accused of running down a man on a bicycle with his truck. Reports say 64-year-old Glenn Frattin is charged with attempted murder in the Saturday morning incident on Garfield Avenue. The unidenitifed victim was taken to Monmouth Medical Center.

JERSEY CITY – Snooki and J-Woww have officially arrived in Jersey City for the filming of their new reality show. The spinoff of MTV’s Jersey Shore was originally set to shoot in Hoboken but the Mayor denied producers a filming permit. Security on set is tight. The production company is footing the bill for extra police officers.

LINCROFT – Brookdale Community College’s new president is Maureen Murphy, currently the head of San Jacinto College South in Houston, Texas. She emerged over numerous candidates in a nationwide search following the departure of Peter Burnham last March, amid corruption allegations. She takes office July 1.

TRENTON – For now, shore-based Congressman Jon Runyan remains the only former pro footballer representing New Jersey on Capitol Hill. Ex-Giants linebacker Harry Carson today told Bergen County officials that he’s decided not to oppose five-term Republican Scott Garrett this November. The 58-year-old Hall of Famer now runs a sports marketing and consulting firm.

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