Christie Administration Forced Secret Ebola Quarantine Facility On Fort Monmouth

Fort MonmouthA top Christie Administration official told the Fort Monmouth Economic Revitalization Agency (FMERA) that they had no choice but to allocate 14 2 story living units in the Suneagles Golf Course area of the fort, located in Eatontown, for use as quarantine housing for travelers returning from West Africa who may have been exposed to Ebola, according to an official familiar with the situation who asked not to be named in this story.

Bruce Steadman, Executive Director of FMERA, and some members for the FMERA board resisted the Ebola quarantine facility being located at Fort Monmouth when they were approached by NJ Department of Human Services (DHS) Commissioner Jennifer Valez Esq. last fall.  Michele Brown, then Chief Executive Officer of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority , informed Steadman that the quarantine facility was a fait accompli, according to the source.

“They (FMERA) were pushed into by the State,” the source said.  “The local members of the board didn’t want it.  Their reaction was ‘No way’.  They really don’t have authority over the fort as they have to answer to the Christie Administration and the Army.”

The Governor’s office controls the 13 member FMERA board.  Only the mayors of Eatontown, Oceanport, Tinton Falls and Freeholder Lillian Burry represent the interests of Monmouth County residents.  The remaining board members are Christie appointees and members of his cabinet.

Brown resigned her position as CEO of EDA last month to become CEO and President of Choose Jersey, a non-profit funded by public utilities, insurance companies, banks and other large New Jersey based companies whose mission to to encourage and nurture economic growth throughout New Jersey.  Prior to leading EDA, Brown was Christie’s appointments secretary and a Assistant U.S, Attorney when Christie lead that office during the George W. Bush Administration.  Choose Jersey his funding Christie’s current junket to the United Kingdom.

LinkNews broke the story about the secret Ebola quarantine facility at Fort Monmouth over the weekend.  LinkNews reported that the “confidential plan was leaked to the community by a DHS email which was sent to several residents.”   NJ.com reported that Eatontown officials became aware that the facility was operational last week on Wednesday after DHS officials contacted the borough’s fire department for a walk through and site inspection.

The Fort Monmouth Ebola quarantine site is a backup to a facility in Hunterdon County, the former Hagedorn psychiatric hospital .  Only when the Hagedorn facility is full with asymptomatic travelers returning from western Africa will new arrivals be transported to Fort Monmouth for a 21 day quarantine.

Eatontown Mayor Dennis Connelly told both LinkNews and NJ.com that the facility’s presence on the fort puts the sale of the Suneagles Golf Course on hold.  NJ.com reported that DHS has a six month Memorandum of Understanding to use the seven duplexes for quarantine.  However, MMM’s source said the arrangement is open ended and that DHS is not paying FMREA, the county or any of the three towns for use of the facilities or and services they require.   MMM’s source also said that the duplexes would likely be demolished when they are no longer in use as Ebola quarantine facilities.


Posted: February 2nd, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Christie Administration, Earthquake, Ebola, FMERA, Fort Monmouth, Monmouth County | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

6 Comments on “Christie Administration Forced Secret Ebola Quarantine Facility On Fort Monmouth”

  1. Bob English said at 9:27 am on February 2nd, 2015:

    As a resident of Eatontown, my main concerns are that the State of NJ decided to impose this upon a town without any prior discussion or notification to the public. News reports note that when Borough officials were first told about the decision by FMERA, they were told the matter was “confidential.” There are many reasons for things being confidential but this is not one of them. Just more reason for people to be suspicious and distrustful of government and specifically this process.

    Despite a lot of happy talk about all of FMERA’s “accomplishments” (two properties sold to be exact) there has been NO property sold in Eatontown, NO new businesses, NOT one new job created and NO properties under contract. Choosing to locate this facility on the FM property that by any honest measure has been a major disappointment in terms of redevelopment efforts certainly raises the question of the State of NJ’s competence to continue to oversee the process.

  2. dave carroll said at 11:50 am on February 2nd, 2015:

    Why not at the Patterson Clinic instead? There’s housing over there too.

  3. Butchie Bogdonavich said at 1:53 pm on February 2nd, 2015:

    Apparently the people housed there will be those who have been exposed but are not showing symptoms (yet). So, presumably they will be healthy enough (and angry enough) to escape their confinement if they so choose. Unless Christie is looking to place a concentration camp close to his beloved Middletown team.

    BTW, none of our local hospitals are designated for Ebola patients. Why not send them to Drumthwacket? I hear it’s mostly empty these days.

  4. whoa said at 5:54 pm on February 2nd, 2015:

    Yeah, I agree! Get the pitchforks! The state health department should have purchased and clear cut another NJ forest and spent a few hundred million developing a hospital type of housing center for these people!

    It’s SO STUPID that someone in the government found usable space that they already own for this when it was a prime opportunity to move some real-estate and to create hundreds of construction jobs for the illegals as well as thousands of white collar jobs for their friends to be appointed to in order to administer the place. Its all about the job creation and someone at the state office has failed!

    Shame on you Bob English for not bringing this type of thinking up at all of those FMERA meetings attended by the six old people who won’t be around in ten years to deal with the consequences of these decisions. Now let’s start a petition to have the state purchase 500 acres of undeveloped land next to an abandoned office complex, burn down the trees, build a real housing center, pave a parking lot, run some utilities, do some road construction and prop this economy up a little more! Who’s with me???

    ohh and ps, it’s for the children!

  5. Bob English said at 12:39 am on February 3rd, 2015:

    @Dave….that has been purchased by AcuteCare which by the way is one of just two actual sales of FM property.

  6. Once again, said at 3:35 pm on February 4th, 2015:

    it appears this administration has poked another thumb in the eye of the county that put them in there, to begin with..absolutely don’t understand it.. anyone from this county that still supports that guy for President needs to move, either to a Dem North Jersey county, or, better yet, D.C., which obviously practices hate and torture on law-abiding, taxpaying Americans citizens, on a daily basis!