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Veni's Future As BTMUA Commissioner in Doubt

BTMUA commissioner already lost lucrative county contract over 'explicit' e-mails

Joseph Veni (Photo: BTMUA)
Joseph Veni (Photo: BTMUA)
Brick Township Municipal Utilities Authority Commissioner Joseph Veni, who last week lost a lucrative contract with the Ocean County freeholder board over purported "explicit" e-mails he sent from county computers, may soon be off the BTMUA commission.

Veni, a Republican, was the subject of a unanimous vote by the all-Republican freeholder board last week which ended a consulting relationship six months before its expiration date over the e-mails. The e-mails had been sought under an Open Public Records Act request filed by the Asbury Park Press in the wake of Veni being referenced in a lawsuit that names Freeholder Director Joseph Vicari. According to the Press report, Veni was accused in the lawsuit of holding conversations with an employee over his sexual preferences and once forcing a kiss on an employee after biting off half of a cookie she was eating.

Through a company he owned, Veni was paid up to $150,000 per year, public records showed.

"The freeholders acted so quickly, whatever’s in those e-mails must be pretty damning," said Brick Mayor John Ducey. "Obviously, the freeholders have access to the e-mails, and we don’t."

Ducey said he expects BTMUA Chairman George Cevasco, a Democrat, to request Veni's resignation from the board, but if that does not happen – or if Veni refuses to resign – a hearing before before the township council would be required to remove him from the position.

"I’ll call on the council to have that hearing and have him removed," said Ducey.

Commissioners on the BTMUA, a regional water and sewerage commission that serves Brick and several surrounding communities, are appointed by the Brick Township Council and are tasked with making policy and budget decisions for the utility. They are also entitled to a stipend and taxpayer-funded health benefits. Veni, records obtained by Patch showed, accepts dental and vision benefits and the stipend, but not a full health package.

Veni's alleged explicit e-mails have prompted agreement on both sides of the political aisle in the county as well as in Brick, where former GOP council member and BTMUA employee Domenick Brando – who is currently seeking a comeback on the council – also called for Veni to go.

"Mr. Veni has exposed the Brick Township residents and MUA rate payers to a financial burden for his alleged actions," said Brando, in an e-mail, who added it would be "unconscionable" if officials allowed Veni to stay on as a commissioner.

The BTMUA's next meeting is scheduled for Monday, May 19. The township council will hold its regular meeting the following day.

A call to Cevasco seeking comment was not returned.
Brandy the Dog May 16, 2014 at 02:22 PM
Did you ask them?
MOONPOOL May 16, 2014 at 05:38 PM
Stephen I took acropolis to task in person. That's why I don't have a high paying job in town or county. a privilege can not deny a person a constitutional right. Stephen people who believe that a safety issues can can over ride a constitutional right! Be come the erosion of out free society. evil prevails when good men do nothing. we effect change by voicing our opinions and standing up for our rights. more people are killed tobacco in this country every day. Why are the police not stopping people from smoking for safety and your elected officials banning tobacco. revenue in taxes perhaps ???? prosecuting some one for dui is now big business. For the lawyers and ins co.the police get huge salary's funded by grants given by insurance companys who make huge profits of the people. The lawyers and so called judges make huge profit from this so called safety issue. look up the right to travel and challenge jurisdiction on google and free your mind follow the money from a traffic stop. The cops are being given kick backs under the guise of grants." for safety issues" if you look at the racketeering laws. You will see that the ins companys lawyers cops judges and politicians are violating the laws of the constitution.
Rock.n.Roll May 16, 2014 at 05:48 PM
Oh man, you speak the truth....Too much government. we just cannot afford that many thieves!
Stephen May 16, 2014 at 05:58 PM
Yea that's why Moonie. Peace.
BBW May 17, 2014 at 09:40 PM
So, when are you going to realize that is a fact of life. You know about the "Blue Wall", but did you ever hear of the "Black Wall? All you have to do is look up the Nj legal code of ethics. You will quickly realize just how the lawyers and the judges are protected. It's not that long, but wait till you see that lawyers must pay into a fund...... I'll let you find out for yourself.

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