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Page 18 Thursday, March 2, 2000 The Westfield Leader and THE TIMES of Scotch Plains – Fanwood A WATCHUNG COMMUNICATIONS, INC. PUBLICATION


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Notice is hereby given that the Westfield Board of Adjustment adopted Resolutions at its February 28, 2000 meeting for the following applications heard at its January 24, 2000 meeting: 1. Subramaniam Sujanthaknmar, 458

Birch Place seeking permission to erect a deckgranted as amended with condition.

2. Linda and Carmine Venezia, 576 North Chestnut Street seeking permission to erect a first story additiongranted. 3. Nancy D. and William F. Griffeth, Jr.,

264 West Dudley Avenue seeking permission to remove existing rear porch and construct building additions to the rear and side and interior alterationsgranted.

4. Mark Haner, 156 Effingham Place seeking permission to demolish an existing garage and erect a new garage at a new location on the propertygranted. 5. John and Ruth Mac Dougall, 2003

Grandview Avenue seeking permission to erect a 288 square foot and 10 feet by 6 inch high shed in the rear yardgranted as amended with conditions. 6. Jeff and Tobi Becker, 644 Lenox Avenue seeking permission to erect a one

story additiongranted as amended with conditions. 7. Anna Macik, 30 Moss Avenue seeking

permission to erect a 6 foot high fence in the front yard of a corner lotgranted with conditions.

Colleen Mayer, Secretary Board of Adjustment 1 T – 3/ 2/ 00, The Leader Fee: $33.66


PLANNING BOARD NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that at the Planning Board Meeting of the Township of Scotch Plains held on February 7, 2000, the application of Nicola Novello for 381 Park Avenue, Block No. 1601, Lot No. 4, was approved with conditions. This action was memorialized by the Board at the meeting of February 23, 2000. The file pertaining to this application is in the Office of the Planning Board and is available for inspection during regular office hours.

Barbara Horev Secretary to the Planning Board 1 T – 3/ 2/ 00, The Times Fee: $14.79

Local AARP to Meet Monday; Upcoming Events Announced

WESTFIELD — The Westfield Area Chapter No. 4137 of the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) will meet on Monday, March 6, at The Presbyterian Church in Westfield, located at 140 Mountain Avenue.

The social period with refreshments will begin at 1 p. m., and the meeting will start at 1: 30 p. m., to be followed by guest speaker Gregory Stock. Mr. Stock, a horticulturist, will give a talk on “Plant Life and Landscaping.”

Members are asked to voluntarily bring nonperishable grocery items such as canned, boxed, and paper products for the Food Pantry. These items will be donated to poor, homeless and temporarily unemployed individuals.

Community Service Chairman Skeets Kuzmuk reported that the chapter’s knitting group, headed by Madeline Roeben, produced dozens of woolen shrugs, lap robes and scarves for the patients of Runnells Specialized Hospital in Berkeley Heights. The knitting contributors for the past month were Jane Broadwell, Jean Tolson and Brenda Glover.

Tray Favor Chairwoman Eleanor Evans stated that 100 tiny paper angels were delivered to Runnells Hospital to be placed on patients’ food trays on Valentine’s Day. The next date for making Easter decorations for nursing homes will be announced at this month’s general meeting.

The Trips and Tours Committee reported that the trip to the New Jersey Performing Arts Center to see

The King and I, with dinner at the Casa Vasca Restaurant, on Thursday, March 23 is sold out. Reservations may be made for the Thursday, May 4 bus trip to Atlantic City by calling (908) 2321362.

Other day trips being planned during the months of May, September and October will be announced later.

The proposed trip to Wisconsin in June has been replaced with a tour of Branson and St. Louis, Mo., to take place from Saturday through Sunday, June 10 to 18. Included will be hotel rooms, most meals and tickets to many shows.

There will also be a dinner and show aboard the Branson Belle paddle wheeler, a tram ride in Dogwood Canyon, a tour of the Stony Hill Winery, an IMAX movie and a tour of the Anheuser Busch Brewery.

The trip will also include a sightseeing stopover in St. Louis, featuring a ride to the top of the Gateway Arch; Mississippi River Boat entertainment and other activities.

A visit to Biloxi, Miss. and New Orleans, La. is scheduled for Friday through Sunday, October 27 through November 5. Featured will be entertainment attractions, historic and natural sites and a Mississippi River Boat ride, complemented by authentic Southern food and Dixieland Jazz.

During the trip, participants will visit Beauvoir, the home of Confederate President Jefferson Davis; the famous Cafe du Monde and Bourbon Street in New Orleans. Two nightclub shows with cocktails will also be included.

Trip members will stay at an ultramodern hotel with 12 restaurants, showrooms featuring Las Vegas performers and a gambling casino.

For further information on these trips, or to make reservations, please call Marie Stauder at (908) 8896769.

Membership Chairman Arthur Taylor said current AARP members may pay their annual chapter dues at Monday’s meeting. He added that since there are now some openings, individuals on the membership waiting list may join the organization.

Cash will be accepted, and checks should be made payable to the Westfield Area Chapter No. 4137 of the AARP. Mailing instructions may be obtained by calling Mr. Taylor at (908) 8891685.

Free income tax preparation assistance is available to members as well as to area senior citizens, the disabled, or lowincome individuals through Saturday, April 15, at the following locations:

The Scotch Plains Public Library, 1927 Bartle Avenue, Scotch Plains, (908) 3225007; St. Helen’s Parish Center, Westfield, (908) 2321867; Westfield Memorial Library, 550 East Broad Street, Westfield, (908) 7894090, and the Westfield Community Center, 588 West Broad Street, Westfield, (908) 2324759.

Appointments may be made at each location by calling the accompanying telephone numbers. For additional information, please call Hazel Hardgrove at (973) 3763348.

Schwarz Named Chairman Of DWC

WESTFIELD —Westfield native and downtown property owner Douglas Schwarz was elected Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Downtown Westfield Corporation (DWC) Monday night during the DWC’s monthly board meeting.

Mr. Schwarz was chosen by the directors to succeed Joseph Spector, proprietor of The Leader Store. Mr. Spector, a lifelong Westfielder, had chaired the board for the first three years it was in existence. The board serves as the management entity of the town’s special improvement district.

The district is funded through a special tax assessment on properties in the district, consisting of businesses in the central business district on the north and south sides of town. The current proposed budget is in the $300,000 range.

In addition to the election of Mr. Schwartz as chairman, Mr. Spector was elected Vice Chairman and Westfield residents who serve as directors on the board, Sherry Cronin and Salvatore Caruana, were chosen Secretary and Treasurer, respectively.

Westfield First Ward Councilman Gregory S. McDermott, who serves as council liaison to the board, said the change should be viewed more as the “changing of the guard.” He said the DWC wants to ensure a system of rotating new people into roles with board.

Mr. Schwarz and Mr. Caruana were appointed to the DWC board at the Town Council’s annual organization meeting in January.

Mr. Schwarz previously was a member of the Planning Board, serving as Chairman for five years from 19931997.

FBI Agent to Discuss Internet Dangers at Township Library

SCOTCH PLAINS — The Friends of the Scotch Plains Public Library will present a program entitled “Protecting Your Children from Internet Danger” next Thursday, March 9, at 7 p. m. at the library.

The program is free to the public and is geared towards parents, teachers and librarians.

FBI Special Agent Stephen W. Foster, a 20year agency veteran and computer security specialist, will outline several potential problems and dangers that children from preschool through high school may encounter on the Internet.

He will also offer the FBI’s recommendations and countermeasures to help prevent them.

Due to the sensitivity of the subject matter, no one under age 18 will be admitted. There will be ample time for questions following the program, and FBI printed materials will be available to attendees.

“Friends of the Scotch Plains Public Library are extremely pleased to offer this program to our area residents,” said Ted Czarnomski, Friends President. “We believe this is a very important and timely subject and are confident that it will be of interest to a great many residents. Since we expect a large turnout, we encourage attendees to come early for the best seating.”

The Scotch Plains Public Library is located at 1927 Bartle Avenue.

Letters to the Editor

Freeholder Ruotolo Explains County Strives to Offer Safe Recreation

Mountainside Democrat Speaks Out About Letter Written by Mayor

As a Union County Freeholder and as a mother of three, I have a unique perspective on the issue of winter recreation in our county parks. I have spent many snow days inside and outside with my children, and we always look forward to winter fun.

As a Freeholder, I have worked with my colleagues on the board to ensure that Union County has the best recreational opportunities possible for children and adults throughout the year.

In the winter, Union County has an indoor iceskating rink, trails and parks designated for crosscountry skiing, walking and hiking trails, several lakes where ice skating is permitted with the proper weather and safety measures are present and one sledding area available in the right conditions.

This is just a part of the historic strong commitment this Freeholder Board has made to safer, better recreation throughout the Union County. Today, in every single municipality in Union County, there are new parks, ball fields, soccer fields, basketball courts and walking trails funded by this Freeholder Board through Project Pocket

Parks. In addition, the county has invested more than $4 million in county park improvements, replacing every playground on county land, creating several new soccer fields and improving many others. We also have invested in our golf courses, in walking and riding trails and open space initiatives.

These investments have opened the doors of recreation for residents of all ages. It also protects young people by providing them with safe recreational opportunities. It is our goal to avoid the kind of tragedy that recently occurred at Galloping Hill Golf Course, where three children were injured while tobogganing at night on a course that was closed due to construction.

This tragedy reminds us that many winter recreation activities can be dangerous. The line between protecting children and allowing them to exercise, play and explore is one of the most important decisions Union County makes. And when we make these decisions, we make safety our greatest concern.

Mary Ruotolo Union County Freeholder

The Mountainside Mayor’s fourpage letter that he wrote as part of the borough’s January reorganization meeting (but not received by citizens until February 16) absolutely demands a response.

Mayor Robert Viglianti uses cliches such as “Naysayers” and “The sky is falling” to distort the opinions of those who disagree with him on a particular issue. No one who I know has “bad mouthed” Mountainside. The position of the Democrats has been that our town could be better served it we elect an independent voice on the Borough Council to break up the 100 percent control by one party in total lock step on all matters.

A few years ago the Mayor attacked the Democrats for not regularly attending Borough Council meetings. We picked up the challenge and regularly attend. On most evenings we are the only citizens there. When we disagreed with him on issues, we forced TV cov erage of council meetings, exposed the

extravagant spending by our elected officials each year in Atlantic City, exposed the over 20year hidden expense account of all elected officials and exposed their attempt to gain a salary against the wishes of the public.

So we thank you for your suggestion that we attend council meetings. I believe the changes we argued for have been enlightening to all citizens. What the Mayor really wants is blind obedience by all citizens; and anyone who disagrees is chastised by him in public or in print.

For someone who brags constantly about his years of public service, he has a very thin skin and cannot tolerate a differing viewpoint.

Grow up, Mr. Viglianti, we are in a democracy and you are a mayor, not a dictator.

Lou Thomas Mountainside Democratic Club

Local Resident ‘Discovers’ Driving Law, Calls For it to be Removed From Books

Last Friday afternoon, my eyes were opened to a law that exists in New Jersey that is virtually unknown to most of its drivers. My Explorer, which was legally parked on a side street, was struck by a traffic safety officer causing nearly $5,000 damage. Yes it was snowing. The fact that caution and reduced speed were indicated should have been as patently obvious to the policeman as it was to me and every other civilian driver on the road at that time.

Since I was assured that my car would be returned to its mint condition, I was totally unprepared for what followed when I reported the accident to my Insurance Company.

Under State Law Title 59, it is not the offender who pays, but the victim. Drivers of New Jersey, are you aware that it is your Insurance Carrier that pays the bill if you are struck by any police, fire

or other municipal vehicle, regardless of the circumstances? Their only liability is your deductible.

I have driven accident free since 1946 when my first license was issued by this state.

Title 59 is a rape of the responsible driver and cannot be allowed to remain on the books.

Unfortunately, it is one of the best kept secrets in the state, which you learn about only when you are faced with it head on, or in my case, rear ended.

We in New Jersey pay some of the most exorbitant insurance rates in the nation. It is adding insult to injury to inflict this onerous law on us. Join me in telling your legislators that you will not tolerate such injustice.

Adele R. Gatens Fanwood Westfield Youth Responds to Criticism

Of Students ‘Hanging Out’ Downtown

Regarding the Letter to the Editor February 17 on “hanging out” in downtown Westfield: Mr. Gwynn is absolutely right. We “hanging out” children should not be “congregating” on “a private institution’s front step adjacent to a public sidewalk.” Therefore, I say HE can take the challenge of finding a place to meet and talk with friends on the weekends.

Ever since Bruegger’s Bagels closed, there really aren’t any places where teenagers can sit and relax with friends, after a long stressful week. (Yes, I do know stress; it goes by the name of the seventh grade.)

This isn’t a war over respect. I respect the parents, teachers, police officers and any other person or persons who work to make our town and its youth better. I understand that going to a good public school is a privilege. Almost every other young person in Westfield can say the same.

Yet we are still treated like the stereo typical teenager: disrespectful and stupid.

The suggestions of other places to hang out look good at a glance, but most of them are unreasonable. Most of the school events are noisy, crowded dances that are only on Friday nights, leaving the rest of the weekend blank.

Many of my friends live too far to walk, and I can’t constantly depend on my parents for a ride. When we finally can get together, we have to “Be quiet, soandso is sleeping; oh, while you’re here why don’t you do me a quick favor; by the way, we ran out of bread.” It’s impossible! A movie would be nice if it were cheaper. This April, when I turn 13, I will be paying $8 for one movie ticket, if I wasn’t supposed to be already. The cost of a diner? Out of the question!

By reading Mr. Gwynn’s letter, one question comes to mind: Where did HIS father “hang out?”

Rebecca Mason Westfield

Westfield Resident, Dentist Urges Communities to Approve Fluoridation

I am writing in response to a recent letter to you concerning the possibility of fluoridating our area’s water supply. As both a practicing dentist and the mother of two young girls I felt compelled to reply if only to dispel any misinformation that had been propagated.

First, fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that can be found in our soil, water and air. It should not be considered a toxin unless, of course, you consider iron, Vitamins A, E or D and a whole host of other naturally occurring substances to be toxins. It is true however that all those substances if ingested in very large quantities can have a toxic effect on the body. This is why fluoridation of our water supply is the safest most effective way of providing fluoride to safeguard the dental health of our community.

In cities like Chicago (fluoridated in 1952) and New York City (fluoridated in the 1960’s), the only effect has been the dramatic reduction of tooth decay in the entire population. To understand why we must understand that fluoride works in a number of ways to effect this result.

First, fluoride when ingested during tooth development, starting at birth and continuing into the early teens, is incorporated into the actual tooth structure by replacing some of the calcium ions in the tooth. This structure is far more resistant to tooth decay than the original molecule

would otherwise be. When fluoride is present in the drinking water it also exerts a beneficial effect on the erupted teeth by the repeated exposure of the teeth and roots to the fluoride solution.

This effect is believed to be a great help in enabling older members of the population to keep their natural dentition longer. Unfortunately, due to gum recession and changes in the saliva, older members of the community can once again become cavity prone. Fluoridation helps everyone in the community to maintain their teeth longer.

As a child growing up in Elizabeth, in the 1950’s and 1960’s I suffered from rampant decay of my baby teeth. While diet significantly contributed to this condition, fluoridation of the water supply could have helped prevent it. It saddens me that over 40 years latter the very same water supply still goes unfluoridated. While my children have had the benefit of fluoride in their vitamins and at regular dental visits, there is no comparison to the benefit they would have gained from its presence in their drinking water.

While my professional chauvinism cannot escape me, I believe that fluoridation of drinking water will be considered one of the greatest public health achievements of the past century. I ask all of the communities that can benefit from this move to strongly endorse the fluoridation of our water supply.

Remember, New Jersey had been ranked 48th in terms of the number of communities that are fluoridated in the United States. Recently the voters in California, which was ranked 49th, passed a referendum mandating fluoridation of most municipalities. I fervently hope that we do the right thing and not respond to the nonscientific accusations that have played on the fears of New Jereseyans since the McCarthy Era. Let’s not have the dubious distinction of being last in the nation in our efforts to protect the oral health of our citizens.

Maxine Feinberg DDS Westfield

Letters to the Editor

Continued from page 4 Continued from page 4

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Copyright 2000 - The Westfield Leader and The Times of Scotch Plains-Fanwood
Covering Fanwood, Mountainside, Scotch Plains and Westfield, Union County, New Jersey (NJ)