FIRST REPORT: Longtime Ocean County Engineer John Ernst to Retire

Ocean County Engineer John Ernst, who has served in his position for over a decade, plans to retire later this year, sources tell TLS.

Ernst has been leading the department since December of 2013.

The Engineering Department works with the Ocean County Road Department and various private contractors to upgrade and modernize all 621 miles of County roads, as well as the 225 bridges throughout the 33 municipalities.

Ocean County has also partnered with the New Jersey Turnpike Authority to build new and expanded Garden State Parkway interchanges.

The Engineering Department staff also installs and maintains over 35,000 traffic signs and 400 traffic lights throughout the County.

Following the recent deadly bridge collapse in Baltimore, attention nationwide has turned to the structural safety of bridges. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Bridge Inventory, eight bridges in Ocean County, or about 3%, are rated “poor.”

Mark Jehnke, who currently serves as the Assistant County Engineer, is expected to replace Ernst.

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