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Stafford to Plant Tree Nursery on Illegal Dump Site

Township will grow their own trees adjacent to Southern Regional athletic fields.

Township Administrator James Moran announced at last Tuesday’s meeting that the township is working to clean up approximately five acres belonging to the Southern Regional School District in preparation of starting a municipal tree nursery.

The property located beyond the horseshoe curve on Cedar Bridge Road near the district’s athletic fields is a known location of illegal dumping, according to Moran.

The administrator made the announcement after being asked about the property during the public session by resident Michael McManus, Leeward Drive, who said he jogs in the area and was concerned over the dumping.

A recent inspection of the property by Patch revealed construction debris, electronics, carpeting, car parts and an entire hot tub strewn around the area.

In a follow up interview after the inspection, Moran said while Southern Regional is responsible for the cleaning up their property, they agreed to let the township spearhead the project in exchange for it using the property as a nursery.

Sherry Roth, head of the township’s Environmental Commission, will coordinate the clean up efforts using volunteers, supported by the Public Works Department, said Moran, who added he anticipated Southern Regional will also assist in the effort.

No date has yet been set for the clean up as of yet.

“We also have been in touch with the county to help with any hazardous waste such as computer components and other electronics,” said Moran.

The Ocean County Soil Conservation District has approved the project, said Moran, who added no other county, state or federal permits are required. 

Once cleared, the nursery area will be fenced off to prevent further dumping and to keep deer and other wildlife from eating the seedlings, said Moran. An irrigation system will also be installed by Public Works, he added.

The township will receive the seedlings at no charge from the state Division of Parks and Forestry. They will later be replanted exclusviely on township and school properties when grown, said Moran.

Some of the cost of the project will be offset by the township no longer needing to purchase trees in the future, said Moran.

When asked at the meeting about the fencing by McManus, Moran said the overall area will still be open to runners and the general public, and the high school cross country course that runs through the area will not be impacted. 

Disclaimer. This Patch reporter is not related to the township administrator, James Moran.

John B Taxpayer October 08, 2012 at 10:41 AM
Nobody can identify the owners of that hot tub?
Harry Uberti October 08, 2012 at 11:55 AM
This area is part of one of the best cross country courses in the Shore Conference. They can't fence that off!
mr henry October 08, 2012 at 12:13 PM
I sure hope people dont think this will be a money saver for the town. The work and the cost to grow trees is alot. The fact that the Township has been unable to keep illegal dumping from happening to this site just tells me that when it comes to protecting the Trees from theft and becoming xmas trees in someones house later as they mature we can expect a massive loss in crop size...So now the township is going into farming?Whats Next?
Susan sheehan October 08, 2012 at 01:58 PM
This is a commendable idea. I am just left appalled that the town can afford a fence for such an unnecessary project but cannot replace the fence that seperates Clearawter park from the parkway. This fence would keep children from wandering onto the parkway, which I think is much more important than protecting trees.
Xavier October 08, 2012 at 02:52 PM
Hot tubs don't have to be registered.
Lou Henry October 08, 2012 at 03:16 PM
If you watch the twp meeting your will see how Mr McManus had to humiliate Moran and the mayor/ council into action. The first answer was a typical cop-out.."not under our control...blame Southern regional". Then our mayor must have remembered it was less then a month to election day and came up with the only idea he ever has... MORE TREES! But what is amazing is no one has reported the most newsworthy part of the evening...the veteran who was able to get Mayor Spodofora to admit he lied about his military records at the March 20 twp meeting made another appearance to set the record straight about our Mayor's most recent military claims, which are false again. Go to the twp website and watch the Oct 2 meeting.
Colleen Platt October 08, 2012 at 03:28 PM
Mr. Henry, We at Patch are looking into this and will be reporting more on this matter as part of our election coverage...stay tuned - Colleen
pigeons_on_the_roof October 08, 2012 at 03:47 PM
I am glad they are doing something about it. I really hope they consult with the school officials, athletic director and cross country coaches though. As the the cross country course runs through the center of it.
Steve Moran October 08, 2012 at 04:40 PM
Harry: The administrator said the cross country course would not be impacted as I reported in the story. You can view his comments online on the township's website.
bob whine October 08, 2012 at 05:25 PM
This is totally laughable. Let's analyze this to see all the ways that our school and municipal government can waste the taxpayer's money: 1. Some taxpayer goes to a meeting and complains about illegal dumping on school property. The right and cheapest way to handle this would be for the school maintenance and grounds department to get the trucks that they have, go out to the sight, and clean it up. Take the stuff to the OC landfill and dump it. Or get some of the municipal trash trucks out there to do a "shared service" type of thing. That is what they are paid to do, and do it while they are working please, no overtime. 2. There, area cleaned, complainer happy, end of story. How our government handles this: 1.Pay municipal workers to clean up the sight. (if the town wants to help the school with the cleanup, that's no problem) 2.Build a fence around the property (taxpayer money) 3 Irrigation system (taxpayer money) 4 Tree farm (taxpayer money) 5 On-going Maintenance of tree farm for years to come (taxpayer money) Total joke, typical government solution, spend more taxpayer money. Thanks Stafford
Sal Sorce October 08, 2012 at 06:41 PM
I was under the impression, that except for the area adjacent to Cedar Bridge Road, the area and the plot known as the Clayton tract was purchased by The Block Team for over $6+ MILLION. The property once planned for 150 Kara Homes was found to have Pine Snakes and Gray Tree Frogs ... the planned construction was brought down to 5-homes ... Kara Homes appealed with a plan to construct properties under the zoned area for 1 or more acre plots. Kara Homes pulled out when that plan was also defeated ... then comes along a plan to make it into a park ... well the residents got a petition and defeated that plan ... under John Mc Menamin's brief term, the site is preserved in perpetuity ... IF THAT MEANS ANYTHING IN STAFFORD TOWNSHIP ... Remember our Parkland that was agreed preserved "in Perpetuity" but was waived for the solely owned Walters Group - Solar 1 LLC and Solar2 LLC plus wind energy ... not a single watt of that energy is going to a single resident outside the Stafford Business Park zone ...nice deal for whom??? Like the idea of planting trees as long as they are not the so called "INDIGENOUS" PIN OAKS THAT ARE UNHEALTHY AND DYING ... How about putting the fencing around those storm water basins within ISLAND WOODS ESTATES ... MAPLEWOOD WHO TOOK OVER KARA UNDER CHPT 11 has done what?? Concerning that matter??
Sal Sorce October 08, 2012 at 06:44 PM
OOP's that was 50-homes not the five ... sorry for the error ... all other data are factual been on this case since building our home in Island Woods Estates ... talk about drainage systems the sewers and plumbing dimensions are huge not a drop in our basements ...
Plunket of Barnegat October 08, 2012 at 08:44 PM
That hot tub would be a great addition for the Lower Shore Road fields. And it's in matching condition with the Lower Shore Road fields.
Harry Uberti October 08, 2012 at 10:08 PM
I have traded e-mails with the twp administrator today. He tells me that the cleanup was planned before the local resident complained, that the cleanup will be done by volunteers at very little cost to the town or the school district, and that the nursery will only take up part of that open space, leaving the cross country course intact
Kathy Frank October 08, 2012 at 10:16 PM
I think that it is a money saving idea to grow the trees that would normally be purchased for projects in our community. Although spending for this does not seem as if it balances out. Would it be possible to turn this over to the school for educational purposes. There are various educational opportunities. Students could learn horticulture through growing, planting and taking care of the trees. They could learn through catching rainwater and irrgating with that instead of the burden being on the township to put in irrigation. Students can learn about building fences, getting local businesses to donate wood and supplies. There are many educational opportunities such as enviroment, endangered species,working with the community and engineering. Children learn best with hands on, so watching their planning and hard work come to fruition would be rewarding.
Sal Sorce June 05, 2013 at 05:35 PM
It is now June 5th, 2013 and I have not seen any activity in or around the site for tree nurseries ... guess Sandy and working on township budget has kept them busy ... Moron is a total loss to this town ... how he survives puzzles me ... he proclaims to know everything, but has never put a work of evidence in writing ... Paul Shives of the former Block Team would provide me with letters with text that provided more questions ... how lovely it is to live in this township???

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