The annual passing of the torch takes place at the Ocean County Board of Freeholders organization meeting tomorrow, with a new director in place.

Outgoing director Joe Vicari will be succeeded by Freeholder Gerry Little this year.

"Gerry Little has a great deal of experience serving in the legislative office for the state of New Jersey," Vicari said. "He was also a councilman in his town in Surf City and has spent many years on the board of freeholders."

Vicari says they both work well together so he forecasts a smooth transition in 2018 as the freeholders look to continue doing what's best for Ocean County residents.

"We want people to live better, I want to bring more money into Ocean County,"Vicari said. "It's something we always strive to do and I've been talking with Freeholder Little and I said...we want people to live and enjoy the quality of life."

Vicari says one of the advantages of changing the director every year is providing various perspectives on the things that affect ocean county residents and businesses.

"You get a new perspective, you get somebody else that's in there with other types of thinking and it's a good thing," Vicari said. "I think it's healthy for us to do."

Still on the agenda for Vicari and the freeholders is addressing a slight drop in thriving businesses.

"I don't see the movement ahead that I would like to see," Vicari said.

He feels a drop in foot traffic at businesses is due in part to more people shopping online and in other cases residents diverting their funds toward living expenses in a still improving economy.

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