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No Free Pass for JCP&L, Red Bank Mayor Says

Red Bank Mayor Pat Menna said the power conglomerate is not doing enough to restore power to towns impacted by Hurricane Sandy.

With many of his town's residents still without power nearly a week after Hurricane Sandy landed on New Jersey's shores, Red Bank Mayor Pat Menna isn't willing to let Jersey Central Power and Light off easy, even as it coordinates its largest power restoration effort ever.

On his Facebook page, Menna, who criticized the power conglomerate for its admittedly poor response following last year's Hurricane Irene, said JCP&L has not provided the borough with clear answers as to when Red Bank will be back at full power, offering only "corporate doubletalk" instead.

Menna's message was at odds with several other local leaders, including Shrewsbury Mayor Donald Burden, who have accepted the lengthy restoration delays as work continues to be done to restore power to residents throughout the state following the most devastating storm in recorded history. As of Saturday night, JCP&L was reporting about 3,500 Red Bank customers without power, a marked decline from the more than 6,000 affected customers it reported were without power two days ago.

Still, Menna said JCP&L has failed to communicate properly with towns. He is urging residents to call the power company and voice their displeasure with the extended outages.

Menna also reported seeing hundreds of utility trucks sitting idly by at Monmouth Park, their crews waiting instruction.

"Wake up Corporate," Menna wrote. "Send the crews to the towns and let our own Office of Emergency Management direct where the repair is needed."

In both Red Bank and Shrewsbury, Department of Public Works crews set out immediately to clear roads and restore driving access throughout their respective towns. In both municipalities, however, the road closures that remain are due to downed poles and wires that are waiting for JCP&L to tend to. In most instances, those areas have been ignored for the past week.

Though many Red Bank residents are still without power, the municipality has fared better than most when it comes to seeing power restored. Just a couple of days after Sandy knocked out power to more than 90 percent of Monmouth County, large parts of downtown Red Bank were back open with electricity flowing. Officials said significant portions of the downtown belong to the same grid as Riverview Medical Center, where power restoration was an immediate priority.

Since then, several Red Bank neighborhoods have seen their power restore, while other towns, like Shrewsbury, have seen little to no work being done or visible efforts to restore power from JCP&L.

Barney December 27, 2012 at 06:24 AM
No, I got you in a double wide trailer eating frozen Stouffer pizzas from Wawa every night. That's where I got you son. Barneylicous and family
Barney December 27, 2012 at 06:25 AM
John, Fred M obviously works for the city. Let him go. His free ride will end when they figure out he doesn't work but only raise your taxes every year. B_LISH
Fred M December 27, 2012 at 06:54 AM
Stalker strikes again..Very strange and sad you talk about children this way...You have a mind of a sicko
Barney December 27, 2012 at 07:31 AM
I talked about children? Where did your little pea-haded union hand out mind read me talking about children? I called you son, moron. You should be locked up alone for making such a statement.
Fred M December 28, 2012 at 01:42 AM
My son is a child...IDIOT

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