EATONTOWN: Tinton Falls' decision to end a shared services agreement with the borough has left officials looking for a new court space.
On Feb. 7, the Tinton Falls Council unanimously passed a resolution which terminates its shared court services agreement with Eatontown; an agreement that has been in place since 2013.
"It has been determined that the costs being assumed by Tinton Falls to operate Eatontown's court have been greater than anticipated and efficiencies that once existed are no longer present making the the terms of the (agreement) impractical to continue despite the 2015 amendments made the (agreement)," the resolution states.
However, Tinton Falls will continue to its shared court agreement with Monmouth Beach, which has also been in place since 2013.
Tinton Falls officials could not be reached for comment on the termination of the agreement
Eatontown Administrator George Jackson said the borough has two options; search for a new town to partner with or reestablish its own court at Eatontown Borough Hall. Jackson said the agreement is still in place until August, so the borough has six months to make a decision.
Jackson said that whatever happens, it will be more expensive more Eatontown as the shared services agreement had a total yearly cost of about $155,000.
"When we disbanded our court, we had three full-time and one part-time employee," Jackson said. "That was four years ago and it cost $280,000 for salary and benefits and that doesn't count other fees."
Tinton Falls' court employees handled the court administration services, but Eatontown provided its own judge. Jackson said the borough's time with Tinton Falls has always been positive and he called their court staff "top notch."
Eatontown's municipal building has a dedicated court room on its main level, but is currently empty and being used by the police, Jackson said.