Borough of Point Pleasant – 2019 and 2020 brought with it a series of long-term power outages in the Borough of Point Pleasant. Finding these outages unacceptable, especially during minor weather events, Mayor Sabosik and the Borough Council engaged in several meetings with representatives from Jersey Central Power & Light (JCP&L) in an effort to upgrade and strengthen our electric infrastructure in Point Pleasant Borough.
Mayor Robert A. Sabosik stated that “It seemed for a long time that our community was being overlooked. Our residents pay their electric bills to JCP&L but have not gotten any return on their money in regard to infrastructure upgrades. Even with the slightest storms or weather events, our power would go out for extended periods of time often with no answer from JCP&L as to why or when we would be back up. The Council and I found this entirely unacceptable and started engaging JCP&L in a series of meetings to get some much-needed infrastructure upgrades to Point Pleasant. Point Pleasant Borough is fed through a combination of substations at the Woodland Avenue Substation, the Route 88 Point Pleasant Substation, the Point Pleasant Beach Substation and the Herbertsville Road Brick Township Substation. Breakers, transmission lines and other equipment were constantly failing at these facilities, specifically at the Woodland Avenue Substation that feeds the majority of our town. I am happy to report that JCP&L at our request have to date completed over $700,000.00 worth of upgrades since the Fall of 2020 that will significantly reduce the number of outages we experience going forward. Nothing is ever 100% though and depending on the severity of a storm there will still be some outages, but the work that has been done should mitigate sporadic and unnecessary outages going forward. I’d like to thank JCP&L for their attention and cooperation to our residents’ needs.”
According to Borough Administrator Frank Pannucci Jr., “Mayor Sabosik and the Council fielded a high volume of complaints from residents over the last few years pertaining to power outages. The Mayor vowed not to let our community be overlooked and demanded that JCP&L take a good look their electric infrastructure here and start to improve it. JCP&L was very receptive to our governing body’s requests and immediately began to investigate what could be improved quickly and to create a long-term action plan going forward.”
Mayor Sabosik added that “The upgrades that JCP&L have just completed were numerous. First, they performed a study and review of the circuits that serve the Borough of Point Pleasant. This review identified items of concern that were targeted for replacement or upgrades. These items ranged from enhanced tree trimmings (overhang brush removal touching wires), replacing relays within the substations that serve the Borough, additional SCADA equipment (remote communication equipment that monitors the status of breakers and lines being fed by substations), the installation of new reclosers (equipment that automatically recloses open fuses or circuits without the requirement of a line or sub-station worker) and the replacement of all brushings and oil pumps, specifically at the Woodland Substation.”
Council President Antoinette “Toni” DePaola added that “the SCADA improvements and new reclosers are especially helpful. Now if there is an outage, they can remotely scan the area and find what is wrong and where the problem is in certain locations instead of waiting hours to have someone manually inspect lines and substations. This will increase JCP&L’s response time tremendously to the benefit of our residents.”
Councilman Bill Borowsky echoed those sentiments, “I have a business right here in town, I’ve been listening to complaints for years, especially lately, about JCP&L’s infrastructure. The Mayor along with myself and the rest of Council went to them and insisted that they give Point Pleasant the attention that our almost 20,000 residents deserve. I have to say they were very cordial and receptive and immediately started working on our issues here. We promised we would hold them accountable and we have. They still have more work to do, but they’ve shown good faith up to this point by completing these upgrades over the last few months.”
Mayor Sabosik concluded that “The number of outages and duration of outages should be shortened with these immediate upgrades. Clearly, they still have more to do, but I’m pleased Point Pleasant is finally getting the attention it deserves.”