By Chris Concannon
Gloucester City News
Following a postponed ceremony, Bellmawr Mayor and Council welcomed Joshua Tregear as their newest Councilman at an informal November 1st swearing-in.
The event had been postponed from Monday October 29, as the result of Hurricane Sandy.
Tregear was chosen from a short list of three possible candidates, including Timothy Baldwin and Raymond Stayszck.
All three individuals were recommended to the Borough Council by the Camden County Democratic Committee.
Mr. Tregear assumes the seat vacated by the retiring Regina Piontkowski, who had resigned from Council September 30 for health and other reasons.
She leaves a nearly 20-year legacy, and a somewhat formidable pair of shoes to fill.
The freshman Councilman will serve the balance of Piontkowski’s term, and run as an incumbent in next November’s General Election.
In storm-related comments, Public Safety Director John Bollinger reported that approximately 100 homes lost power in the Fifth and Sixth Avenue sections of the Borough during the super storm, adding that all homes have had their power restored.
A number of trees in town also lost their battle with Sandy, with only minor damages reported overall.
Bollinger said a Bellmawr EMS ambulance was dispatched to the Atlantic City area, which sustained substantial home and property damage due to Sandy.
Also, the heavy rescue unit from the Bellmawr Fire Department was dispatched to the Toms River region to assist in emergency management efforts there.
He added that Bellmawr’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM) was open during the storm to any residents who needed to seek shelter.
All costs incurred by the use of Bellmawr’s EMS and rescue units, along with the provisions on hand at the OEM office, will by fully reimbursed by FEMA, Bollinger said.
Bellmawr’s EMTs and firefighters are some of the most highly-trained professionals and volunteers in Camden County, and their response to aid those affected by the storm all along the New Jersey coast, speaks to their 24/7 level of dedication and professionalism, he said.