Middlesex County News

Mayor Cohen Meets with Murphy, Rios at Mayors' Roundtable

Freeholder Director Ron Rios and Governor Phil Murphy share a laugh at the beginning of the Middlesex County Mayors Roundtable Credits: Middlesex County
East Brunswick Mayor Brad Cohen joins his peers at this week's roundtable with the new governor. Credits: Middlesex County

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Middlesex County Freeholder Director Ronald G. Rios welcomed New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy to the Heldrich Hotel in New Brunswick on Feb. 14, as the Governor hosted mayors from throughout the County for a roundtable discussion on critical issues facing the County’s towns and residents.  East Brunswick Mayor Brad Cohen was there, asking questions about proposed redevelopment in the township.

“I am very excited that you have come here to discuss priorities and how we can build new partnerships with the State while strengthening those that already exist,” said Freeholder Director Ronald G. Rios. “Thank you, Governor, for giving all of us the opportunity to have a direct dialogue with you on issues facing our residents.”

Gov. Murphy summarized his Administration’s priorities, such as Infrastructure and transportation funding, education funding and municipal aid, and told those assembled he intended to work with county and local officials to meet his goals.

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Murphy then turned the floor over to the mayors, who discussed dozens of topics ranging from land redevelopment and property taxes to affordable housing and traffic.

"I am pleased that the Governor is making an effort to get out to the mayors throughout the state and doing it county by county," said East Brunswick Mayor Brad Cohen.  "Governor Murphy has told us that when we have questions, we should expect an answer.  You will always get a response.  Mayors may not like the answers, but they will get the information they need to move forward."

Cohen said that Murphy was "not sitting in an ivory tower," but that he was coming out to the people "in the trenches" doing the work of management.  Cohen asserted that the meeting was "an opportunity to talk about what was important in our neighborhoods and towns."

"He knows that every mayor doesn't want to get rid of the 2% cap on spending increases within their budgets," said Cohen of Murphy.

Asking questions specifically with regard to East Brunswick, Cohen wanted to know about the status of New Jersey Assembly Bill 1505 which would allow lower rates for liquor licenses.  "These licenses are ridiculously expensive, " said Cohen.  "If the people of East Brunswick want more small restaurants that serve alcohol, the prices have to change."  The Mayor suggested that only chain restaurants can afford the $100,000 cost of a license right now.

"If the prices are lowered, there will be a fund to reimburse those current businesses that have paid the higher price," he said.

Cohen also asked Murphy about the township's desire to increase the use of shared services so that there would be "more overlap and less overhead."  He suggested sharing some services within the township, between towns, and at the county level to reduce costs and reduce redundancy in administration and staffing.

Overall, Cohen saw Murphy as "an honorable guy" interested in "fairness."

Echoing that sentiment, Freeholder Director Rios closed the meeting by saying: “This type of face-to-face, direct outreach is so vitally important as we all move forward in serving the people of our towns, the people of Middlesex County and the people of the great State of New Jersey.”


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South Plainfield

The Athlete of the Week Luke Niemeyer Wrestling

The South Plainfield Wrestling Team sent six wrestlers to compete in the New Jersey Individual State Wrestling Championships, March 2nd-4th.  Thirty-two wrestlers throughout the state qualified for each weight class.  South Plainfield placed two out of the six qualifiers in the State of New Jersey.  Junior 195 pounder Luke Niemeyer became a state place winner for the first time in ...

The Athlete of the Week Joe Heilmann Wrestling

The South Plainfield Wrestling Team finished its terrific season this past weekend at the New Jersey Individual State Wrestling Championships.  The top four wrestlers from the Region Tournament in Union had the opportunity to wrestle in Atlantic City for an individual state title.  The Tigers placed two out of their six qualifiers in the State of New Jersey, Senior 126 pounder Joe ...

Pre-Ticket Sale for Holy Savior Academy’s 4th Annual Spring Splendor Tricky Tray

Holy Savior Academy is hosting its Spring Splendor Tricky Tray Saturday, April 21, 2018 at the school.  Doors open at 6:00 p.m.

Tickets are limited and will be sold at Holy Savior Academy, 149 South Plainfield Avenue, South Plainfield on Wednesday, March 21, 2018 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. (cash or checks)

BYOB and food- Admission $ 25 per ...


Robert Corcia, 52, of Cresco, died Tuesday, March 13, 2018 at Lehigh Valley Pocono ...
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Letters to the Editor

Letter from the Chapman Family

March 14, 2018

Dear Editor -


“Hey Dad, today in school the police officer played volleyball with us, it was fun.”


“My son came home from school today and told me that the police officer played football with them at recess”.


“I heard that one of the police officers sat down and ate lunch in the cafeteria with the children today. They loved ...

Community Happenings

A Tribute to our Veterans - An Evening with Jim Barone

March 15, 2018

The South Plainfield Elks Motorcycle Committee in conjunction with the Veteran's Committee is hosting an evening with Jim Barone, who is an Elvis impersonator, on April 28th, 2018. Doors open at 7:00pm and the Show starts at 8:00pm.   Tickets are $30.00 which includes the show and finger foods.  Tickets are limited please contact Brian Csobar 908-756-9425 or SP Elks ...

Grandparents Day at Riley School

March 18, 2018

Pictures of Grandparents Day at Riley School submitted by Debbie Boyle

Pre-Ticket Sale for Holy Savior Academy’s 4th Annual Spring Splendor Tricky Tray

March 17, 2018

Holy Savior Academy is hosting its Spring Splendor Tricky Tray Saturday, April 21, 2018 at the school.  Doors open at 6:00 p.m.

Tickets are limited and will be sold at Holy Savior Academy, 149 South Plainfield Avenue, South Plainfield on Wednesday, March 21, 2018 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. (cash or checks)

BYOB and food- Admission $ 25 per ...

Eggert Volleyball Fundraiser a huge success.

March 12, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - On Sunday March 11th South Plainfield current and former residents came out in force to support the Eggert Family and stand up against cancer.  The Volleyball fundraiser was a great success and would not have happened without all of the great support from the community.  Once again South Plainfield showed that we are a tight knit community who looks out for each ...

Upcoming Events


Wed, March 21, 2:00 PM

South Plainfield

Holy Savior Academy's 4th Annual Spring Splendor ...


Sun, March 25, 1:00 PM

South Plainfield

Annual Easter Egg Hunt

Thu, March 29, 7:30 PM

Wesley United Methodist Church, South Plainfield

Holy Thursday Communion Service at Wesley United ...

Religions And Spirituality

Fri, March 30, 3:00 PM

Wesley United Methodist Church, South Plainfield

Good Friday Prayer Vigil at Wesley United ...

Religions And Spirituality

Sat, April 7, 9:00 AM

Wesley United Methodist Church, South Plainfield

Rummage Sale at Wesley United Methodist Church

Arts & Entertainment Other Religions And Spirituality


Fri, April 13, 7:00 PM


SPRO Victory Dinner Honoring Councilwoman ...


Diegnan Bill To Secure At-Risk Nonprofits Becomes Law

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ -Legislation sponsored by Senator Patrick J. Diegnan to provide state grants to increase security at New Jersey’s nonprofit organizations deemed high-risk targets of threats, attacks, and other violent acts was recently signed into law.

“We know that individuals, with great animus, are looking to endanger our friends and neighbors for who they are, what they ...

Saturday Debris Cleanup Operations

The Department of Public Works will have three separate crews performing tree and branch removal tomorrow March 17th.  All branches and twigs should be brought to the curb. Cleanup efforts will not be completed tomorrow. This will be an on-going effort to remove all debris from the Borough. Additionally, the yard waste site will be operating on summer hours which are 8:00am – ...

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote (Random House, 1965)


In Cold Blood is, quite simply, the grand-daddy of true crime writing, dubbed by Capote, himself, as the first non-fiction novel (although Norman Mailer argued the point when he published The Executioner's Song in 1979.) The conditions under which I read In Cold Blood for the first time were pretty weird, which was another ...


Did you miss a movie that you wanted to see in the theaters and don’t want to pay to rent it or for the DVD? Come to “Monday Night Movies” at the library.  It’s all the fun of a movie theater but none of the cost.  We are showing brand new releases every Monday night and we will be providing popcorn for all who attend. This week’s movie stars Margot Robbie ...

2018 Keystone Community St Patrick's Lunch

The South Plainfield Knights of Columbus Council 6203 held their annual Keystone Special Citizens Community Lunch at the Holy Savior Academy on March 10th. Every Month Father John Alvarado from Sacred Heart Church holds a special Mass for the Mentally Challenged residents from the Keystone Community as well as other residents from Middlesex County.  This month’s theme was St ...

If You Want to Experience the Awkwardness of Race Relations, Look No Further Than Sunday Morning

In a country that is more racially divided than ever, our churches reflect the divide on Sunday morning. In America, we miss the mark on integrating the faces and lives of many races and ethnicities into our Christian communities.

LifeWay conducted a survey of 994 churchgoers who attend religious services more frequently than just holidays. They also surveyed 1,000 Protestant senior pastors of ...

Press Releases

Join the Kennedy School for “A Night at the Casino”

March 19, 2018

The John F. Kennedy Elementary School’s PTSO is hosting their 4th Annual “A Night at the Casino” on Saturday, April 14th at 6:30 p.m.

Thanks to the generous donations from local businesses, the PTSO is transforming the American Legion Chaumont Post #243 into a casino complete with Black Jack, Roulette, Craps, and Poker.  Tickets for this adult evening of fun and ...