Watch what you Post on Facebook Highlands

Eric D. Nempsey  28, of Laurel Drive Highlands was charged with harassment after police say he used Facebook to harass another person.

He violated a restraining order by sending the victim numerous private messages on the social media website Facebook after being served with a temporary restraining order at which time he was arrested on Nov. 27 and sent to the Monmouth County Jail in Freehold township in lieu of $4,000 bail.

I think this is a good time to go over some Facebook etiquette.

1. Know the difference of what needs to sent via Private Message instead of posting on a wall.

The walls do indeed have ears, especially so for the Facebook Wall. Best to keep certain conversations behind closed doors in Facebook Messaging. Unless you have a restraining order issued against you, then don’t do PM’s either.

2. Be Mindful Of What You Post

Rule of thumb, don’t post on a wall what you wouldn’t say to someone’s face or in a room full of people.

3. Call Rather Than Post Personal News

No one needs to know someone died via Facebook.

4. Avoid Posting Comments On Every Post

If you’re stalking someone, leave it at that. Don’t make it a habit of making a comment on everything they post or they’ll start to get suspicious and get a restraining order against you.

5. Don’t Flame Others

Everyone is entitled to state their own opinion on the free internet, so there’s no need to put anyone down just because you disagree (or worse, don’t like the person). Commenting on your friend’s friend sister’s friend who replied to a post, whom you don’t even know looks embarrassing not only to you, but to everyone in that chain of Facebook friends as well.

Should Fences Be ‘Required’ in Highlands?

waterwitch vehicles I’ve gotten emails with regard to the neglected properties series on properties, that aren’t necessarily abandoned or over run with weeds, but have become over run with abandoned vehicles, commercial vehicles etc. (see for example to the left: 2 boats, an old truck, a commercial truck, and an old wave runner behind the truck.)

We aren’t taking a house under construction or even being lived in, but one becoming a pseudo vehicle grave yard.

That being said, should some one be able to store a  boat on his property without grief from their neighbors? – Maybe. But on the flip side should neighbors be subjected to multiple vehicles viewable on a property?

Should Highlands Property Owners be required to construct a fence to block the view of non-registered vehicles?

What not to do when pulled over for DWI in Highlands

rt 36 quickchekFriday night a Middletown teen was charged with driving while intoxicated,  as well as eluding the police, refusal to submit to breath tests, reckless driving, leaving the scene of an accident, failure to report an accident, no headlights, failure to maintain lanes, unlicensed driver, unregistered vehicle and uninsured vehicle. She later was released with a pending court date. (I’m kind of wondering why there wasn’t a drinking underage  tagged on..)

Let’s go over the mistakes this kid made:

Mistake #1: Getting drunk at 18 and getting behind the wheel of a car that’s not yours

Mistake #2: Deciding to go to Quick Chek after Mistake #1 and actually going in while an on duty PD was also in there

Mistake #3: When pulled over by PD that saw you in Quick Chek, as he’s walking toward the car take off through intersection

Mistake #4: Hit 3 park cars trying to escape

Mistake #5: Ditch the car,  hide behind a house and pretend it never happened.

Luckily no one was seriously hurt, except for maybe the drivers ego.  Hopefully this was a life lesson.

Where to go for Thanksgiving Eve in Highlands

turkey partyThanksgiving Eve @ Claddagh with Classic Vinyl

Thanksgiving Eve @ChubbyPickle    Nine Deeez Nite !!

Thanksgiving Eve @ Wind And Sea – Brian Kirk and the Jirks

Thanksgiving Eve @ Off the Hook – live music by Tommy Grasso,

Thanksgiving Eve @Bahrs – STRUMBERRY PIE

Did You Move Your Car Yet in Highlands?

NOAA is saying Wednesday AM High-tide is the one to look out for with regard to coastal flooding.  High Tide in Highlands should be at 2:25 AM.

148 Bay Ave Burned Down

You may remember 148 from the closed business tour a few weeks ago.

It looks like the home next door and Fresh sustained some collateral damage from the heat.

What the Thanksgiving Nor’Easter means to Highlands

surfing turkeyAccording to NOAA, the holiday Nor’Easter will bring heavy rains Tuesday through Wednesday Night with expected  roadway and poor drainage flooding. Wednesday High Tides are going to be the ones to watch out for. Add in 60 mph winds and its not going to be pleasant downtown.

Its not like last year when they predicted a Holiday Nor’Easter, this one looks real and expect downtown to take water.

WANTED: Thanksgiving Desserts

ImageWind & Sea is accepting donations of baked goods for dessert for the Thanksgiving Dinner they are putting on with OLPH food pantry for those displaced from Sandy.

The desserts can be dropped off on Thanksgiving eve or anytime after noon on Thanksgiving day.

Dinner will be from 3 to 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 28, Thanksgiving Day, at the 56 Shrewsbury Ave. restaurant.


forecloure preventionWHEN:
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 3, FROM 6:00 – 7:00 P.M.

Presented by the Bayshore Family Success Center and Affordable Housing Alliance.
AHA’s Stefanie Wynn will review housing options for struggling homeowners, including

–Options for homeowners struggling to meet their monthly mortgage payment
–Modification programs, including HAMP
–Understanding the foreclosure process in New Jersey
–How to spot and avoid scams
–Life after foreclosure

Please RSVP to Talesha McLawhorn by Wednesday, November 27, 2013 by calling 732-241-7049 or via email

How Are You Surviving Sandy?

Seastreak Launches New Fare – Kids Ride FREE

ssSeastreak has launched a new fare valid through Memorial Day in which it will offer round-trip ferry service between New Jersey and New York City at no cost to children age 12 and younger who travel with an adult paying the full fare rate.

Through this promotion, Seastreak is hoping to encourage families to explore New York during the winter months. During these trips, Seastreak’s ferry service from Highlands and Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey will be docking at Pier 11 and at East 35th Street in New York City, which will provide access to attractions such as Grand Central Station’s Train Show or Radio City Music Hall during the holidays.

Seastreak has 13 departure times from New Jersey to New York on weekdays and five departure times on weekends. A complete schedule is available online at

The trip from New Jersey to New York aboard a Seastreak ferry takes less than an hour and is an alternative to the congestion of traveling into the city using a car or public transportation.

Tickets, including the no-cost fares for children 12 and under, are available by calling 1-800-BOATRIDE (1-800-262-8743) or by visiting

Highlands Civics Fact vs Fiction

highlands civicsA Civics Lesson Brought to you by Highlands United:


  • The present form of Highlands’ government, aka council-mayor falls under the Faulkner Act otherwise known as the Optional Municipal Charter Law, Small Municipality, which came into effect in Highlands in 1978.

  • The changes following  the Yes vote on the November 2013 Highlands election municipal ballot question is that municipal elections will now be Non-Partisan; this means there will be no banner of Republican, Democrat, Independent or other parties.  Also there will no longer be primaries.

  • Now Persons who wish to be Highlands candidates must be registered voters of Highlands. They may be nominated by petition of at least 3% or one hundred (100) of Highlands registered voters, whichever is less; the number cannot be less than ten. Candidates run on a nonpartisan basis; that is without political party designation or slogan; bracketing of a group of candidates on the ballot is not permitted.  Petitions must be filed at least sixty days before the election.

  • Runoff elections are used only in nonpartisan forms of government. Under the provisions of the Uniform Nonpartisan Elections Law any municipality having nonpartisan elections may decide to have runoff elections or to abandon them if they are already in effect. The change, which must be approved in a referendum, may be initiated either by an ordinance adopted by the governing body or by a petition signed by registered voters equal or greater than 10% of the votes cast at the last preceding election for general assembly.

  • Election of New Highlands Council will fall on the second Tuesday in May at next general election in at least 75 days after the after the referendum for plans with nonpartisan at-large elections.  Installation of New Municipal Government July 1 following election for nonpartisan plans.

  • Initiative and Referendum: Under the Faulkner Act which has been around since 1956, proposed ordinances can be introduced directly by the people, without action by the local governing body. What this means is: once a petition signed by registered voters equal or greater than 10% of the votes cast at the last preceding election for general assembly, the local governing body can either vote to pass the requested ordinance, and if it refuses to vote on it, it is then submitted directly to the voters at the next general election.


  • Non-Partisan Movement changed how much power the mayor has.  No, the structure of the Highlands government has not been changed, only how candidates are presented to the voters.

  • Non-partisan form of government makes Highlands Council fall under the Faulkner Act.  No, Highlands has operated under the Faulkner Act since 1956.

  • Non-Partisan movement is a vast left-wing/right wing conspiracy.   No. Highlands United is made up of 12 people from all different parties: GOP, DEM, IND.

  • Non-Partisan Elections will be the downfall of humanity in Highlands.  No, only an uninformed and misled electorate will do that. :)

Faulkner Act (Optional Municipal Charter Law)

Small Municipality

Small Municipality Form (NJSA 40:69A-115)

This form is available only to municipalities under 12,000 in population, although a municipality that grows beyond 12,000 may retain the form. The Small Municipality is commonly thought of as a cross of the two most common “traditional” forms: the township and borough. It is also a strong mayor form in that the mayor exercises the executive authority of the municipality. The mayor may in fact be a stronger position in this form than in the Mayor-Council since he/she is not only the chief executive but also the presiding officer of the council.

The mayor in this form appoints an assessor, tax collector, treasurer, clerk and any officers provided for by local ordinance. He or she also appoints all other officers and employees of the municipality, unless the Civil Service provisions are in effect. The mayor has the dual role of chief executive and presiding officer of the council, and votes with council but has no veto power. The council is the legislative authority of the municipality. Under this form, the council passes ordinances and resolutions, passes the budget, consents to the appointments of the mayor and has investigative powers but it possesses no administrative authority.

3, 5 or 7 Council members or Mayor and 2, 4 or 6 Council members. Elected at-large. Council: 3 year concurrent or staggered term. Voter elected mayor serves 4 year term. Partisan or nonpartisan elections.

Partisan: January 1
Nonpartisan: July 1

Elected by voters or Council. Presides over Council with voice and vote, but no veto. Exercises executive power of the municipality. Appoints Council committees. Appoints municipal clerk, attorney, tax assessor, tax collector, treasurer with Council confirmation. Council elected mayor serves 1 or 3 years, depending on whether terms are staggered or concurrent.

Exercises legislative power of the municipality. Approves Mayor’s appointees for municipal clerk, attorney, tax assessor, tax collector and treasurer.

Mayor exercises executive power of municipality. Council may create an administrator by ordinance.

New Jersey State League of Municipalities

OMCL: Direct Petition Process

(1) A petition for direct change to an OMCL charter may be filed at any time. (N.J.S.A. 40:69A-18)

It must be signed by the following percentages of the registered voters:

25% in municipalities of 7,000 or less inhabitants;

20% in municipalities of more than 7,000 and less than 70,000 inhabitants;

10% in municipalities of 70,000 or more inhabitants. (N.J.S.A. 40:69A-19)

(2) The petition must indicate the complete description of the OMCL Plan being proposed.  (N.J.S.A. 40:69A-14, 19)

(3) The petition must meet the following requirements:

(a) All pages must be uniform in size and style,

(b) Each separate petition must have a place for the circulator to sign, indicating that only he or she has personally circulated the petition, and that all signatures were made in his or her presence and are believed to be genuine.

(c) Each petition must include the names and addresses of five voters who are designated as the Committee of Petitioners.

(d) Petitions must be signed in ink or indelible pencil. (e) Signers of the petition must indicate their name and place of residence. (N.J.S.A. 40:69A-186)

(4) All petition papers must be assembled and filed with the municipal clerk as one instrument. (N.J.S.A. 40:69A-187)

(5) The municipal clerk has 20 days to determine whether the petitions are valid and have been signed by a sufficient number of qualified voters.

(a) The clerk certifies the result to the municipal governing body at its next regular meeting.

(b) If the clerk finds the petition to be insufficient, he or she must indicate the reasons why and must notify at least two members of the Committee of Petitioners. The committee of Petitioners then has an additional 10 days to submit supplementary petitions, and the clerk has an additional 5 days to review them. If the clerk finds the petition still to be insufficient, the process is concluded. (N.J.S.A. 40:69A-187, 188)

(6) If the petition is found valid, the municipal clerk schedules a referendum on the question at the next general or regular municipal election to be held at least 60 and no more than 120 days after the petitions were filed or, if there is no regularly scheduled general or regular municipal election within that time period, at a special election in that period. (N.J.S.A. 40:69A-20)

Wind & Sea to Host 2nd Annual Sandy Thanksgiving

windandseaThe 2nd Thanksgiving after Sandy is being hosted by Wind & Sea

Wind & sea is inviting residents from Highlands, Atlantic Highlands and Sea Bright to join them for a Thanksgiving dinner

They are inviting all who are in need of a meal or who are still displaced from their homes after Sandy.

They are joining forces with the Food Pantry at OLPH Church located in Highlands to make this meal special for all.

They will be serving a free Thanksgiving Dinner at Windansea from 3 pm – 6 pm on Thanksgiving, Thursday, November 28th.

Windansea is located at 56 Shrewbury Ave, Highlands, NJ 07732


What did you miss at Last Night’s Highlands Council Meeting

I have no idea what happened at the executive session. The main meeting consisted Carla from the BID reading from the Transit Village Criteria and Scoring Guide

Seriously. This is what the agenda consisted of.

Apparently we are 75% compete. We have to submit the whole application by February. Benefits for developers include: State Tax credits and grants that can be applied toward development.  Benefits for the town include DOT monies they wouldn’t necessarily have half mile radiusaccess to.

The 1/2 mile radius from the Seastreak Terminal will make up the proposed area for the Transit Village. To put it in context, its as the crow flies, so approximately to Cedar St.  It also goes over to Plum island at Sandy Hook as well as up to Monmouth Hills across Rt 36 and past the Henry Hudson Trail.

Obviously the majority of the radius isn’t actually Highlands.  So how that impacts the application isn’t quite clear.  So its something we’re going after, what the ‘real’ benefits and limitations has either not been yet vetted or maybe just shared.

There is going to be a public meeting to get resident opinions on how to handle the criteria and get feedback.

Hopefully they will use slides.


Highands Resident Snags ‘Fastest New Jerseyan’ at Philly Marathon

phillymarathonJust two weeks after thousands of New Jersey runners crossed the Hudson River to run in the New York City Marathon, thousands more crossed the Delaware River Sunday to run the streets of Philadelphia.

Of the 14,000 plus runners that took part in the Gore-Tex Philadelphia Marathon main race Sunday,”  nearly 2,300 were from New Jersey, according to Philly Marathon Organizers. Highlands resident, 29-year-old Craig Segal ,with a time of 2:28:16 came in as the fastest New Jersey resident to finish the race.

New Jersey was home to 11 of the top 100 finishers.

New SAS Meeting Thursday 21st – UPDATED


When: Thurs Nov 21st 7:00 PM

Where: Waterwitch Tea & Coffee

Reflecting on past year
a. writing
b. sharing stories.

Immediate needs, community or personal

Community projects
a. current
b. new ideas

UPDATE: Guest speaker Barbara Lipkowitz from Hope and Healing will be speaking.

Highlands House Tour


 House 1: Ocean

55 5th st
House 2: 5th St

this is a 2 for one, some one actually nominated the house behind this one, but I thought they meant this one same address, no upper window.

2nd st house 2

# 3 2nd Ave

If would like to nominate a house in your neighborhood, you can send an email to: