Ocean County Leader Wants More Federal Aid From Washington

Commissioners argued a bit about new committee assignments. Pictured, from left: Barbara Jo Crea, Joseph Vicari, and Virginia Haines. (Photo by Bob Vosseller)

OCEAN COUNTY – This year’s Director of the Ocean County Board of Commissioners wants more federal aid from Washington and so he wrote to President Joseph Biden to request it.

  Commissioner Joseph H. Vicari, who is the longest serving county commissioner in the state, was recently sworn in as 2023’s Director of the Board. One of his first actions was to write a letter to the President asking for more federal aid to benefit seniors in the county.

  “We need assistance to ensure that our more than 200,000 senior citizens continue to receive the best possible care,” Vicari said in the letter. He also noted that Ocean County has one of the state’s largest senior citizen populations, and has a growing number of adults aged 85 and older.

  Vicari added, “the county already funds numerous programs to keep our older residents safe and healthy, but with Washington’s help I know we can do even more. For the same cost as a one-day stay in the hospital we can feed a senior through our meals-on-wheels program for an entire year.”

  The director serves as liaison to the Ocean County Office of Senior Services. Vicari said the county already funds a number of preventive health and nutritional problems for older adults.

  “Please help us continue our work in protecting our vulnerable senior citizen population. I know you will agree with me that our seniors have given their all for their nation and they have earned our support and our help,” he added.

  Vicari also asked for additional aid to help protect the Barnegat Bay which he said was “the true jewel of Ocean County. The County already works with the National Estuary Program to protect and preserve the bay, but I feel additional federal money can be earmarked to assist us in guaranteeing that the bay will be enjoyed by generations yet to come.”

  The director added, “Washington’s dollars could further contribute to efforts such as the county’s pump-out boat program and new educational programs teaching residents and visitors alike the importance of bay protection.”

  “We have always balanced the need for preserving the bay with the desires of residents and tourists who enjoy the bay for boating, swimming and fishing,” he said. He also asked for more federal beach protection and restoration aid.

  “Ocean County also has more than 44 miles of oceanfront property, the most in New Jersey. The preservation of our coastline depends on further cooperation between our county, our towns and Washington,” Vicari added.

  The official also said working with state and federal officials to bring more aid to Ocean County is one of his main goals for 2023.

  “This county’s government has always delivered results for our residents. But we can’t do it alone. We need to continue and enhance our important partnerships with the State of New Jersey and Washington D.C.,” he added.