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Sheriff Candidate Calls for Merger of Jail, Sheriff Departments

Letter from Sheriff Candidate Bob Armstrong

Letter as submitted by Bob Armstrong, Ocean County Sheriff Candidate:

The county’s stable Fitch Ratings is not the whole story. The County should stop wasting thousands of taxpayers’ dollars on needless studies and do what I proposed three years ago — merge the Department of Corrections with the Sheriff’s Department. If elected in November, this will be my first priority.

The sheriff has completely mishandled his department and the costs are staggering. How can Sheriff Polhemus justify paying fifty-four of his employees, who work “inside” the office, over $100,000 each?

My proposal to merge Corrections within the Sheriff’s office will greatly reduce bloated salaries, overtime and political patronage. Other counties have done it already, and there is no justification for Sheriff Polhemus to keep the status quo here in Ocean County. The consolidation of the Sheriff’s Department and Corrections worked well for over one hundred years in Ocean County until Sheriff Polhemus was elected twenty-seven years ago. For purely political reasons, I believe, Mr. Polhemus and the freeholders created the Department of Corrections and hired a jail warden. That was wrong and I will change it.

Governor Christie has advocated consolidation and streamlining services. My proposal would accomplish that in the Sheriff’s office.

Sheriff Polhemus and the Jail Warden spent over $4 million in overtime alone in 2011. This is outrageous considering that the majority of sheriff officers perform “inside” duties.  I have proposed utilizing them for law enforcement duties “outside” for which they were trained.  Our local police departments could certainly use the help controlling traffic and public safety and I believe the sheriff’s officers would welcome the opportunity to get “outside” the office and work in real law enforcement.  As it is, we are wasting their talents.

Bob Armstrong

Candidate for Ocean County Sheriff

Independent thinking Taxpayer July 01, 2012 at 01:51 AM
I don't know if he is so incompetent that he can't get the facts straight or if he is just downright misleading the citizens of OceanCounty, but the fact of the matter is that the previous Sheriff Brown asked the Freeolders to take the jail. Mr. Armstrong also misleads the taxpayers when he claims that counties are merging DOC's with SD's. The facts bear out that over the past 30 years the Sheriff's have gone from running 14 jails to 7. Mr. Armstrong has proven that what claims Sheriff Polhemus to be, he is, an unknowing over the hill political hack.
Don Gottwerth July 01, 2012 at 03:00 AM
As a very conservative GOPer I have to agree a change is sorely needed. I have no confidence in the local GOP regime. Yes, PH should be relieved of his duties snd put this man in without hesitation. He would certainly be of the Christie-type of departmental realighnment.
JOHNNY Done it July 01, 2012 at 04:28 AM
Keep the cages locked feed them & water them....(the animals)
So Much to Say July 01, 2012 at 04:33 AM
OK so who would you rather in this office....Polhemus?????
JOHNNY Done it July 01, 2012 at 04:36 AM
Lets forget party lines Take look at each ones resume Than figure out who is not In the ocean county bubble & got experience in other places...other than an Ocean County position ..the only burnt toast is the ones that are in the postions now status quo ..Why improve something they are comfortable in there positions now & step on someones toes..
JOHNNY Done it July 01, 2012 at 04:39 AM
How many pensions that your local judge is getting ? try that for disclosure , that will make you sick when you found out (one will be collecting 7)
JOHNNY Done it July 01, 2012 at 04:44 AM
You would think the GOP would found another person to run ,I am sure they can find one ,or They really think people are that dum to see this guy needs a helper and is not capable if driving himself to work , carrying a firearm or remember what he said 5 minutes ago.. That is an insult to every tax payer.
JOHNNY Done it July 01, 2012 at 04:48 AM
security for the courts i Agree ,,not a $100,000 secretary thats insane ,Ask the secretaries on the county payroll if they make that too...
JOHNNY Done it July 01, 2012 at 04:51 AM
I have to agree Polhemus is the keeper of the skeletons in the closets until his mind goes
Don Gottwerth July 01, 2012 at 12:33 PM
Now what you say is idiotic. Do you remember the minority woman that ran couple years ago for freeholder that couldn't handle her finances in a responsible manner yet proclaimed her qualifications to operate in Ocean County as a "chosen" freeholder? Its yes, even the Republicans who are "in for life" that cause. the problems. Limited terms is the answer, not the leftists who compose the Dems, a la Obama, the "anointed" one, the amateur.
oldsoldier July 01, 2012 at 12:55 PM
I don't know Mr. Armstrong, except that looking at his picture, he has provided a great many years of service to our country. I certainly will not discount that, nor disparage the character of a man who did a job most americans will not, but will benefit from his service. I think he deserves some consideration. That said, I repeat from my earlier comment on this. He needs to convince the voters that he understands the roles and responsibilites of each department before trying to tell us how he wants to change things.
JerZ COP July 01, 2012 at 12:58 PM
He has certainly served our country well, but what does he know about running a sheriff's department or corrections department. Just from what he says its obvious that he does not know much about either job.
JerZ COP July 01, 2012 at 01:02 PM
As a candidate Mr. Armstrong should disclose his federal pensions that he collects. Has the Patch ever asked him about this? You should.
oldsoldier July 01, 2012 at 01:06 PM
Agreed. Perhaps he and those close to him are reading these comments. Hopefully, he will work out this issue soon, and come out with a solution. If so, then maybe he can make himself a truly viable candidate.
oldsoldier July 01, 2012 at 01:17 PM
A man serves his country, risking his life to protect us here. He wants to use his military/law enforcement experience presumably to benefit us in Ocean County and all you can think of is disclosure of his pensions? How about accepting the fact that he earned them, and perhaps he will bring something else to the table like honesty and integrity. Right now I don't think he understands the roles of those in the OC or SD clearly, so he should learn them, then get back to us voters with a plan.
Wise Owl July 01, 2012 at 01:33 PM
What a sad state of affairs when neither man is up for the job. Armstrong disappoints for his erroneous comments. He should get his facts straight before he puts out releases. It just makes him look like a misinformed stooge of the Dems.
Miriam July 02, 2012 at 03:00 PM
Now is your chance!Get out and expose!On July 2-3, 2012, Lawless America...The Movie will film victims of government and judicial corruption in Mt. Laurel, New Jersey -- TownePlace Suites Mt. Laurel, 450 Business Parkway, Mt. Laurel, NJ 08054, 856-778-8221. If you would like to be filmed, come tell your story for the movie. Just show up between 10 am and 6 pm, though we will probably not have openings until after 6 pm on July 2. Also email Bill@LawlessAmerica.com with your name, address, and phone number. http://www.lawlessamerica.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=993%3Alawless-americathe-movie-new-jersey-filming-july-2-3-2012-please-come-expose-corruption&catid=133%3Alawless-america-the-movie&Itemid=105 The movie will expose corruption in every state. The Movie will focus on victims. Corrupt judges and corrupt government officials will be exposed, and we will confront a number of the crooks. If anyone has ever questioned the story of a person who has expressed the view that they were a victim of the government or of judges, this movie will prove that the odds are that the corruption report was true. One feature length documentary movie is being produced. It will be shown in theaters, on Netflix, Blockbuster, and other such video places, and the movie will be presented at the Sundance Film Festival and other film festivals.
Geralyn July 02, 2012 at 05:01 PM
The current sheriff gave $42,00 overtime to a SINGLE employee. Terrible!
Chief Wahoo July 02, 2012 at 05:23 PM
is this the public taker , who is on disability , being paid by the taxpayers and tax free ??????
Miriam July 02, 2012 at 05:36 PM
@Geralyn.Please, email Bill@LawlessAmerica.com with your name, address, and phone number.If you would like to be filmed, come tell your story for the movie. Just show up between 10 am and 6 pm, though we will probably not have openings until after 6 pm on July 2.If you don't wish to be filmed share your testimony anonymously,and offenders will be confronted,and questioned. I wonder how many will be caught running from the camera to be seen all over the world!On July 2-3, 2012, Lawless America...The Movie will film victims of government and judicial corruption in Mt. Laurel, New Jersey -- TownePlace Suites Mt. Laurel, 450 Business Parkway, Mt. Laurel, NJ 08054, 856-778-8221.The movie will expose corruption in every state. The Movie will focus on victims. Corrupt judges and corrupt government officials will be exposed, and we will confront a number of the crooks. It will be shown in theaters, on Netflix, Blockbuster, and other such video places, and the movie will be presented at the Sundance Film Festival and other film festivals.
Aansh Mehta July 02, 2012 at 05:36 PM
Mr. Armstrong has extensive experience with law enforcement of all kinds. He was a state investigator for NJ Dept. of Criminal Justice. He has also worked as a forensic accountant with the state as well. Lastly, Mr. Armstrong served as Deputy Director of Homeland Security for the Ocean County prosecutor's office. Oh and not to mention he has over three decades of experience as a Special Agent wit the U.S. Air Force. Now you may still ask, how does that qualify him to run a jail? I believe that by working to put away all the different types of criminals you could possibly imagine for decades, Mr. Armstrong has shown that he is very qualified to run the jail where these people do their time.
Aansh Mehta July 02, 2012 at 05:43 PM
I don't think that Mr. Armstrong is doubting the qualifications or the importance of those officers who work inside the department. His point is that how can Polhemus justify six figure salaries for over 50 officers?
Joe R July 02, 2012 at 06:14 PM
After over 25 years of Ocean County suffering from Sheriff Polhemus preserving the status quo instead of continuing to improve the departments under his control, supporting political cronyism with over-zealous salaries for his employees, and burdening the citizens with thousands of dollars of unnecessary and mishandled departmental costs, it is time for Ocean County to elect a new Sheriff. After looking at each candidate, Bob Armstrong is the most qualified man to tackle the problems that plague this county. Bob Armstrong’s resume speaks for itself after spending his entire life in law enforcement in one form or another. He has new ideas on how to fix our county’s problems and has the experience how to implement these changes effectively. Candidate Bob Armstrong is the only man up to the task of being Ocean County’s Sheriff.
Samantha July 02, 2012 at 06:54 PM
"Sheriff Polhemus and the Jail Warden spent over $4 million in overtime alone in 2011," that's outrageous! It's time for a new Sheriff and Bob Armstrong is the best candidate!
Jvalentin July 02, 2012 at 07:03 PM
"We are wasting their talents" - Bob Armstrong. I absolutely love it! He definitely made great points in his letter! We need officers to do what they were meant to do, what they were trained to do, and what they love to do!
Brian Froelich July 06, 2012 at 03:02 AM
To getinvolved1, Bob Armstrong (whether Dem or Repub) has one of the best resumes that you could find for this position. He is clearly the stronger and better candidate. And if you are embarrassed by the same old recycled players you should also look at replacing Republican Congressman Chris Smith. He has been there 32 years (and has had a Republican President for 20 years, a Republican Senate for 16 years, and a Republican House for 14 of the last 18 years.) And all we have gotten is more spending, more deficits, and more debt. He votes for more spending but against seniors, against women, and against improved healthcare. He signed the ‘Contract for America’ which called for congressional term limits but now has refuses to abide by it. Brian Froelich, Candidate for Congress (NJ, 4th Dist.) http://www.froelich4congress.com/
DAD July 10, 2012 at 04:18 PM
Not all Sheriff Officers have "inside" jobs. There are many with jobs "outside the courthouse" everyday. They drive both marked and unmarked vehicles every day as part of their jobs not only throughout the county but even the state as well as out of state or country (Canada etc.) if necessary. But when driving if they see someone going through a red light or speeding dangerously or cutting in and out of various lanes on the parkway in dangerous manners to all innocent people driving on the road they "are NOT allowed" to pull-over the vehicles and write tickets per the Sheriff. (Even though they swear to uphold all the laws and as law enforcement officers are trained and should handle any and all illegal actions no matter how minor or major.) In this day and age with the major increases in people in this county the local & state officers could certainly use the extra eyes that see things when they aren't around to help and take care of problems. (Especially the towns that don't seem to do the traffic patrols like they used to and everyone knows which towns lets them do what they want and which towns when they cross the border they slow down in and stop blowing through the red lights. Just observe as you drive, you'll see it too.)
Ray July 10, 2012 at 04:26 PM
Polhemus is also collecting a pension from the Police Retirement system since he retired as SH Chief.
Ray July 10, 2012 at 04:31 PM
Sheriff Officers should be allowed to enforce the traffic laws when they are on patrol. Positions should be rotated so they get experience in all units in the Sheriff's Dept. Just working in the courts stymies their abilities.
Sophie Sie September 27, 2012 at 04:32 AM
I’m not speaking for any Party because the “Party” subject is part of a sophisticated political machine. I simple have no required mechanical knowledge to argue for any “Party”. But, George BOB Armstrong’s wisdom of macroeconomic perspective to use Taxpayers’ money wisely in combating the governmental wide financial crisis is deserving a chance to lead the county’s largest law enforcement agency. Joseph Grisanti’s wealth of experience and service in enforcing and following the laws is deserving a chance to continue serving his beloved taxpayers with honesty and integrity to safeguard all taxpayers’ American dream. Pat Barndt’s great social consciousness in her elegantly poised win-win proclamation of that “I’m running because we all deserve better.” for September 11, 2012 Asbury Park Press is awaking New Jersey taxpayers to catch a dream and run with her for better. Catch your American dream. Let’s run with BOB Armstrong, dance with Joseph Grisanti, and fly high with Pat Barndt in the realm of truth, faith, and integrity. Sophie Sie

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