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Local Officials: Bed Bugs Issue Being Dealt With at Brick Township Offices

Mayor and Administrator describe treatment process at municipal offices

Though last week, the Brick Township Municipal Offices were , and Mayor Stephen C. Acropolis said today that the bed bugs issue is being handled.

“One live bug and one dead bug were found by the extermination service,” commented Acropolis. “There were four small areas identified as ‘hot spots’ with the potential for bed bugs; in the human resources department, in the tax collector’s office, in the briefing room and in the clerk’s office.”

Though referred to as “bed bugs”, the tiny, parasitic insects don't necessarily live in beds or even residential homes. According to the North Carolina State University Department of Entomology, bed bugs are most often transported from one location to another by piggy-backing on luggage, briefcases and similar items. Offices, which include a great amount of ductwork and false ceilings, provide passageways for the bugs to spread. Bed bugs feed by injecting their mouthparts into a host – a human or an animal – and ingesting its blood.

“An extermination service came to the municipal building, using specially-trained dogs for detection of bed bugs,” said the mayor. “Their handler brings them to all the rooms, where they check around the outside and all the objects inside, like chairs, desks and file cabinets. When it locates a ‘hot spot’, the dog will sit down or put its head against the affected area. Identifying locations first was very important.”

Acropolis said that a plan is currently being discussed to have the trained dogs return for monthly visits, until the municipal building shows no “hot spots” for two consecutive months of testing.

“It ended up not being a large issue. The exterminator said that if it were, the whole building would need to have been defogged,” Acropolis stated.

The mayor said that the treatment process which was utilized involved the use of a crystallized substance which cuts open the outer shell of the bed bugs and renders them lifeless.

As far as where the bed bugs originated from, the mayor did not know specifically, but said that it’s likely they were brought into the municipal building from the outside.

Last week, however, no one was taking any chances.

“Before we knew what the extent of the situation was, we did what we thought was best and erred on the side of caution. From our standpoint, I’d rather send the employees home,” said Acropolis, on the decision to close the municipal building on Thursday.

During the extermination and treatment process, the Brick Township Police Department was temporarily relocated to the Mobile Command Unit at the municipal complex, in order to complete their normal operations.

The town’s administrator also spoke on the bed bug remediation process.

“The exterminator and dogs came in, and treated the affected areas appropriately,” Township Administrator Scott Pezarras said.

Pezarras said that last week’s bed bug treatment was billed at $2,800, and added that the town has received a tentative “scope” proposal for further remediation at this point, but not a complete price proposal.

The township administrator indicated that discussions would be ongoing as to precautionary measures that could be taken by the town to prevent another occurrence of this nature at the municipal building.

Fred August 07, 2012 at 12:43 AM
Let me get this straight. One bug found alive and one found dead. For that, we spent $2800 and Township loafers got a free day off. The way this was handled, you would have thought the Bubonic Plague was back. Can the good Mayor please tell us how many people have died in NJ due to the unimaginable horror of a bite from the big bad bed bug? A $3.00 can of Raid would have accomplished the same thing.
Resident August 07, 2012 at 09:54 AM
How ironic, the biggest blood sucker in this town authorized a waste of $2800 to get rid of other blood suckers in his nest.....I guess this town is only big enough for one blood sucker.....
Hollowman August 07, 2012 at 10:25 AM
and if either if you two lovely persons went to town hall for anything and got infected by bed bugs I'm sure you'd have some snide remarks about the towns inability to "clean up town hall" lol how ridiculous. Precautionary measures need to be taken in order to protect the township employees, their families, and all other people who come in and out of the building. If that cost $2,800 dollars and stopped some whining brats from either further complaining about a pest problem that wasn't fixed right away, or stopped someone from suing the township for their bed bug problems after a visit to the tax office or a jail cell, than I am all for it.
Mrs B August 07, 2012 at 10:36 AM
Exactly Hollowman, I am happy it was only 2,800 dollars and not up to tens of thousands like it could cost to remediate a building such as the city hall. It was caught early and treated aggressively, thankfully.
Gary LaFetra August 07, 2012 at 10:59 AM
Caught early and treated aggressively as it should be. The money was well spent. A can of Raid would have done squat.
Art Sholty August 07, 2012 at 12:38 PM
@FRED..............Thank God you did not include your last name Fred because this is the most stupid comment I have read in months. You're a winner when it comes to lack of brain power. Mayor Acropolis and all involved, jumped to the task of ridding the building of the bugs and will continue to monitor for infestation until the all clear is sounded. Thank you Mayor Steve Acropolis for a situation well handled. Fools like this will never be satisfied, no matter what.
BW August 07, 2012 at 12:44 PM
Bed bugs are like fleas and roaches, when you see one, there are 10,000s of thousands more.
10% Tax Cut NOW August 07, 2012 at 12:47 PM
Why wasn't the Building treated bi-monthly in the first palce ? The expense should be covered by the Red Light Camera fund.
Art Sholty August 07, 2012 at 12:48 PM
@ RESIDENT Read what I told Fred because you need it too. Compliments are needed not complaints. Again, thanks Mayor for a job well done. They live all around us and there's nothing we can do about it but SWAT them as if they were bugs too. $2800 well spent.
Jill August 07, 2012 at 01:11 PM
First of all you are all very ignorant, I am a Brick Township resident & I have worked in Pest Control for over 15 yrs., Bed Bugs are a HUGE problem. Our company treats at least 2-3 Bed bug Jobs per day everyday. No you CAN NOT just get a can of raid & kill them. I would love for one of you to get them because I guarantee you would be the one of many people that call our office crying & screaming that you have them and furthermore if you ended up getting them in your home I am sure you would bame townhall if they didn't do anything to remedy the situation. $2,800.00 is actually a very good price to pay for the treatment especiially bringing in a dog. As usual people run thier mouths before they know what they are talking about.
Jill August 07, 2012 at 01:19 PM
because there is no preventative treatment for bed bugs
JG381 August 07, 2012 at 01:30 PM
I worked for a popular shipping/delivery company several years back, and we had a similar occurrence within our building. Part of the building was closed off, the exterminators did their work, and our business continued to operate with no interruption (except for the hassle it created for us, the management staff). I guess the public sector obviously handles things a bit differently (by closing entire municiple building, and giving everyone the day off), for 2 bedbugs!....I guess if the muni building had an actual infestation, the civil workforce would have been given at least a week off?!....I guess when worker's salaries are derived from an endless supply of taxpayer dollars (as opposed to actual profit from generated revenue, as in the private sector), then closing an entire building for a day or so (and allowing civil workers to just go home, on the taxpayers dime) is just another day that can be recouped (financially) with increased taxes (as is status quo here in Brick Twp. these days) - Thanks Acropolis, for your continued "consideration"!
Typical Obama Voter August 07, 2012 at 01:36 PM
Pot calling kettle.....pot calling kettle
Slippery Slope August 07, 2012 at 01:42 PM
Art Sholty critiquing posters comments for stupidity.........Now that's funny.
CShorShell August 07, 2012 at 02:11 PM
Thank you Jill! I can't believe people are harping over the $2,800 and sending the employees homes. I would rather they had done that than hearing the employees are suing the town b/c they brought home bed bugs and had to have their homes exterminated. Could you imagine what that bill would have been? And you KNOW someone would have had an issue with their health and the chemicals that were sprayed to treat the problem if they were in the building when the extermination process was occurring. That's just a lawsuit waiting to happen. As much as I am not a fan of our mayor, he made the right call.
Dan Patrick August 07, 2012 at 04:24 PM
What a bunch of idiots. The partisan hacks will complain no matter what the administration does or lack of. We had the misfortune of having those creatures in our office last year. Man let me tell you it took two visits and $3,900 to fix it and our office was a lot smaller then town hall. Now, imagine if the Mayor did nothing about them? The Dem hacks would be shouting..."We have bed bugs in town hall and the the Mayor does nothing about it".......Go figure!
JHill August 07, 2012 at 05:37 PM
I assume your company shut down for 2 days and did NO work and everyone got paid for their time off?
Rosemary Headley August 07, 2012 at 09:40 PM
Like Art said. MONEY WELL SPENT brainless!!!!
Resident August 07, 2012 at 10:35 PM
Listen you old fool, I have read your continual verbal assaults on anyone that does does agree with your twisted sense of rightiousness, so your words are worthless to me. Maybe the word waste of 2800 was overboard, it was the irony of the situation that I found intrigueing.
BW August 07, 2012 at 10:42 PM
I just read in the APP that same thing is happening in Asbury Park. The SMART thing to do would be to contract with an exterminator on a yearly basis and have town hall done at least once a month. Maybe they got them all, maybe they didnt,only time will tell. Better to be safe then sorry. But then again the 3 main charactors are almost never or never in townhall, so I guess it wouldnt effect them one way or the other.
BW August 07, 2012 at 10:53 PM
Resident, not worth it when it comes to Art. Most of us have lived here all our lives (in our case 52 years), while Art never even heard of Brick until he bought a house in 1999, so he is only here 12/13 years. Maybe you should ask him what happened to the public job he had up north as a code enforcer. Art is a hanger on and will do anything to be excepted by those "in power" hoping to be thrown a bone once in a while.
Brick August 07, 2012 at 11:37 PM
@Art.. It's the only thing this administration can handle
Hollowman August 08, 2012 at 07:54 PM
JHill, first of all its called "salary." They dont work and are not paid by the hour. Second, it is in no way the employees fault or responsibility that the building became infected so they should not have to suffer a loss of income due to having to shut the building down for treatment. Now I could see if somehow the employees simply decided not to show up out of fear of being infected with bed bugs, then also expected compensation in some way, but it was not their choice and the building needed to be cleaned. You really suggest not paying any of the employees after they were forced not to come into work?? I pray to god you're not a business owner and if you are I feel very very sorry for your employees.
JD August 08, 2012 at 09:24 PM
hollowman.. You are incorrect... They do NOT get paid a "Salary" perse... because they get paid for overtime!!! and yes, their pay should be docked!!!

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