Union County Commissioners Address Golf Course Flooding Concerns

During a recent Union County Board of Commissioners meeting, substantial attention was directed towards the severe flooding issues at the Ash Brook Golf Course, which have impacted the course’s playability. Members of the Ashbrook Men’s Golf Association presented urgent pleas to the Board for immediate action to clear the creek that has contributed to the damage, alongside discussions on the 2024 executive budget which includes a 1.75% tax increase, and the introduction of an ordinance to modify the county’s solid waste management plan.

The Ashbrook Men’s Golf Association members articulated their concerns regarding the persistent flooding at the golf course, emphasizing the damage to several holes and the resultant negative effects on their ability to play. Their testimonies detailed how water levels have risen to meet the fairways, resulting in considerable harm to the course’s infrastructure. The members expressed frustration over the delay in resolving the issue and urged the Board for swift action to clear the creek to prevent further damage.

An individual, using evidence from a Google Maps search, further underscored the urgency of addressing the creek’s condition. They pointed out the obstruction caused by wooden planks and questioned why the creek issue had not been included in the proposed drainage plans for the golf course.

Additionally, concerns were raised about the County Manager appointment process, with a member of the public criticizing the selection of an individual who does not reside within the county. This speaker also addressed issues of free speech and the conduct of certain officials based on previous meeting experiences. They further inquired about specific resolutions pertaining to the allocation of funds for environmental engineering services, pedestrian bridge replacement, and the UC Pac concert series.

The meeting also included discussions about the introduction of an ordinance to modify the Union County District Solid Waste Management plan, which would designate Waste Management of New Jersey facilities in Elizabeth, New Jersey for the disposal of certain solid waste types. This ordinance is part of an effort to streamline and improve the efficiency of waste management within the county.

The financial aspect was a key focus of the meeting as the County Manager presented the 2024 executive budget, proposing a 1.75% tax increase. This announcement is significant as it sets the financial direction for the county in the upcoming year and affects all Union County residents.

Public comments featured a resident expressing gratitude to the Chairwoman and seeking clarification on the Board’s response to their concerns, with a special mention of their wish to “clear the debris out,” which could be interpreted both literally and metaphorically in the context of the meeting’s discussions.

The Chairwoman issued a warning to a participant about maintaining decorum during the public comment portion, referencing a previous incident of gross misconduct and physically threatening behavior toward a Union County employee, and emphasizing the importance of respectful dialogue.

In response to the concerns regarding the golf course, the director of Parks and Recreation addressed the need for the replacement of the Nagan pedestrian bridge and discussed environmental concerns at County buildings. The engineer provided an update on efforts to clear the creek and discussed long-term improvements for the golf course.

Other issues addressed during the meeting included reminders about voter registration deadlines for the upcoming primary election and the annual School Board election in Westfield. Commendations were given by several commissioners, including one who reported on their participation in a national conference discussing the salt tax issue and another who highlighted an event honoring a local community leader.

Note: This meeting summary was generated by AI, which can occasionally misspell names, misattribute actions, and state inaccuracies. This summary is intended to be a starting point and you should review the meeting record linked above before acting on anything you read. If we got something wrong, let us know. We’re working every day to improve our process in pursuit of universal local government transparency.
County Manager:
Edward Oatman
County Council Officials:
Kimberly Palmieri-Mouded, Lourdes M. Leon, James E. Baker, Jr., Joseph C. Bodek, Michele S. Delisfort, Sergio Granados, Bette Jane Kowalski, Alexander Mirabella, Rebecca L. Williams

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