FIFTY CENTS 232-4407
Scotch Plains – Fanwood THE TIMES
OUR 40th YEAR – ISSUE NO. 40-99 Published Every Thursday USPS 485200
Periodical – Postage Paid at Scotch Plains, N.J. Thursday, October 7, 1999
of of of of of
— Serving Scotch Plains and Fanwood Since 1959 —
INDEX INDEX INDEX INDEX INDEX
Arts................Page 20 Business ........ Page 16 Classifieds ..... Page 19
Editorial ........ Page 4 Obituary ........ Page 8 Religious ....... Page 9
Social ............ Page 6 Sports ............ Page 11
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Scotch Plains Street Fest Keeps Crowds Pleased Throughout Downtown
By DEBORAH MADISON
Specially Written for The Times
For the first time in several years, the Scotch Plains Day festival, called Street Fest ’99, held last Saturday, was not rained out.
“We had perfect weather and a steady crowd of participants streaming in all day long,” said Lion’s Club Director and co-organizer of the event, Norman Bendel.
More than 25 vendors displayed their wares in the Municipal Building parking lot, with a variety of antiques, collectibles and useful household items. The usual Saturday Farmers’ Market was also on hand selling fresh fruit and veggies, while cotton candy and Italian Ices pleased the younger crowd.
The Scotch Plains Day Committee, co-chaired by Ray Pardon, President of the Scotch Plains Business & Professional Association (SPBPA) and Laura Sanson Botto, Director of the Scotch Plains Recreation Department, were instrumental in organizing many of the day’s events.
The Moderne Academie of Fine Arts and Chun’s Black Belt Karate, both of Scotch Plains, performed demonstrations of the skills they offer. A live petting zoo, pony rides and giant balloon tents delighted the younger set, while D.J. Raffi Khatchadouriah and the blues music of Alvin Madison serenaded the large crowd.
Face painting, dancing clowns and balloons galore added color to the festive atmosphere.
The SPBPA gave away more than 500 magnets publicizing the township’s new Web site:
CONTINUED ON PAGE 10
Dean Oil Appeal Denied by Board In 6 to 1 Decision
Cheri Rogowsky for The Times
DOUBLE TAKE…Twins Michael and Justin Rosin of Scotch Plains gaze admiringly at a detailed replica of the Battleship New Jersey, which was exhibited on Park Avenue during Scotch Plains Day/Street Fest ’99.
Cheri Rogowsky for The Times
BUBBLE BLOWING…Ina Tmau of Mountainside was the winner of the Bubble Gum Blowing Contest during Scotch Plains Day/StreetFest ’99, which was held last Saturday in the Towne Centre.
Cheri Rogowsky for The Times
AND THE WINNERS ARE…Scotch Plains Mayor Geri M. Samuel and Ray Pardon, President of the Scotch Plains Business & Professional Association (SPBPA), announced the winners of the SPBPA-sponsored poster essay contest entitled, “What Scotch Plains Means to Me.” T-shirts were awarded to the winners, who will have their winning poster design silk-screened upon their shirts.
By SUZETTE F. STALKER
Specially Written for The Times
A controversial plan to build rental apartments at the Dean Oil property, opposed by residents en masse since February, was denied 6 to 1 by the Fanwood Planning Board last week – just one day shy of a state deadline requiring the board to reach a verdict in the case.
The board’s decision – handed down after midnight Thursday following a final five-hour hearing – drew cheers and applause from the sizable crowd which remained for the denouement of the appeal in the Park Middle School auditorium in Scotch Plains.
LaGrande Realty Associates, LLC, represented by Vincent Bontempo and attorney John Mollozzi, sought approval to erect a two-story complex containing 25 apartments, including four affordable housing units, at the long-vacant site at LaGrande Avenue and Second Street.
The developers required a use variance for the project because the Dean Oil site is presently zoned for commercial use. Bulk variances were also sought by the applicant.
In accordance with state law, the Planning Board had until October 1 to reach a decision, or the application would automatically have been approved by default. LaGrande Realty Associates can appeal the decision in Superior Court.
The looming deadline resulted in periodic tension between the board and residents during the meeting, as well as between members of the audience and the applicants.
Board Chairman Gregory Cummings repeatedly urged residents to focus their questions on issues not previously addressed in order to stay within what he called “a very tight time frame.” He also advised residents to pose questions rather than comments at certain times during the hearing.
Originally proposed as a threestory, 36-unit dwelling last winter, the project was subsequently scaled back by 33 percent. Residents were not appeased, however, claiming the project was too intense for the 1.3acre lot, which for years was used by Dean Oil as a storage and distribution facility.
Some 40 Fanwood residents spoke out against the revised petition over the course of five hearings, which opened in June and spanned the summer, challenging the developers’ claims that the apartment complex would benefit the community by providing upscale rental units.
Opponents, who banded together as Fanwood Citizens for Responsible Development (FCRD), argued the multi-family dwelling would increase school enrollment and costs, strain local services, cause parking problems and overuse of LaGrande Park, and remove a substantial chunk of land from the downtown, which the borough is attempting to revitalize.
The applicants maintained that they planned to market their oneand two-bedroom apartments to professional singles and couples, and projected no more than half a dozen children would be added to local school rolls from the complex.
They also claimed their 50 proposed parking spaces would be sufficient to accommodate the building’s
occupants and anticipated many would commute to work from Fanwood by train. In addition, the developers argued that apartments would generate less traffic in the area than commercial development of the site.
Fresh concerns arose at the Planning Board’s September 22 hearing, when Mr. Bontempo testified that an environmental technical firm found evidence that contaminated run-off ground water may have seeped onto the Dean Oil property from adjacent sites.
Although the state Department of Environmental Protection certified in 1997 that appropriate cleanup measures had been taken following removal of underground storage tanks from the lot, board members maintained some confusion still existed over whether the site was entirely “clean.”
According to Mr. Cummings, reports from the DEP confirmed that the storage tanks had been properly removed but did not address other possible sources of contamination.
Mr. Mollozzi observed that since the Dean Oil site had undergone the required cleanup measures, it should not be penalized because of seepage coming from adjacent lots, adding that the situation would not affect drinking water.
He said the “proper remedy” would be for the Fanwood Board of Health to issue summonses to the owners of the sites which were reportedly causing problems for the Dean Oil property.
Mr. Cummings agreed that while the owners of the Dean Oil site are not responsible for run-off from other properties, such seepage would still have an impact on the Dean Oil property.
Borough Engineer Richard Marsden said an underground storm water detention facility for the development could be designed as a sealed system to prevent pollutants from entering the storm sewer system.
He also proposed that a Memorandum of Agreement from the state giving final approval that the site was fit for residential development be required as a condition of approval.
Mr. Mollozzi said he would have “no problem” with either the sealed detention system or the proposed Memorandum of Agreement as conditions of approval of LaGrande Realty’s application.
Board members remained troubled by the specter of possible contamination, however. One member, Brenda Steinberg, also pointed out that no sealed detention system had been reviewed to determine its suitability for the project.
Resident George Bacsik of Belvidere Avenue voiced concern that contaminants on the property could lead to health problems like the pediatric cancer clusters which have emerged in the Toms River area during the past two decades, and which are believed to be linked to pollutants in the environment.
Local attorney Joseph DiRienzo of Belvidere Avenue, one of the strongest critics of the LaGrande Realty application, alleged that Mr. Bontempo was aware of the seepage issue when he presented his applica
Virus-Infected Crows Turn Up in Area Counties; Mosquito Control Bureau Maintains Surveillance
By SUSAN M. DYCKMAN
Specially Written for The Times
Though the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) announced Monday that four dead crows from Bergen, Essex, Middlesex and Union Counties have tested positive for the West Nile-like virus, health and mosquito control officials are not pushing any panic buttons in Union County.
State officials did not anticipate receiving results for two weeks. However, the birds were analyzed over the weekend by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Ft. Collins, Colo.
According to Dennis McGowan, spokesman for the DHSS, the CDC was able to analyze five of the 30 birds submitted last Thursday for testing.
A fifth crow, which did not test positive, came from Mercer County. The department is awaiting results on the remaining specimens.
Neither the DHSS nor Westfield Regional Health Department Director Robert M. Sherr could say where the infected bird had been found in Union County.
No New Jersey residents have been diagnosed with the virus, which has afflicted 37 New York residents since August. Four individuals have died from the illness.
The West Nile-like virus is transmitted through the bite of a mosquito that has picked up the virus by feeding on an infected bird.
At the Union County Bureau of Mosquito Control, Chief Inspector Carolyn Vollero is fielding a heavy volume of calls from concerned county residents.
She assured The Times that the bureau is proceeding with its mosquito control surveillance program and will continue to monitor its 30 light traps across Union County for the presence of adult mosquitoes. Normally, the traps are pulled in at the end of September.
According to Ms. Vollero, the trap count was low as of October 4. “There isn’t any need to do additional spraying,” she stated.
She confirmed that the bureau had treated certain known mosquito breeding grounds around the county on September 29 and October 1, between the hours of midnight and 4
a.m. Because of still winds, “there’s less possibility of pesticides moving off the target areas at those times,” Ms. Vollero explained.
One spot in Westfield that was ground-sprayed recently was an area behind the rear parking lot of St. Helen’s Roman Catholic Church on Rahway Avenue where a problem was identified.
The Chief Inspector said the bureau is following up on numerous calls from residents asking inspectors to investigate standing water areas in neighborhoods, as well as such locations as unused pools or foundations of new construction.
Ms. Vollero was scheduled to attend a meeting with Union County health officers Tuesday afternoon in Springfield to share information about the ongoing mosquito control effort. The bureau is also considering placing a public service advertisement in the Star Ledger in an effort to reassure and educate residents.
She urged county residents who wish to contact the Bureau of Mosquito Control for information or to request an inspection of a potential mosquito breeding ground to call the
bureau directly at (908) 654-9835. “You have to try to do the right thing,” said Ms. Vollero, commenting on the importance of following the recommended precautions. “If people are informed, they can.”
Symptoms of the West Nile-like virus are closely related to those of St. Louis Encephalitis, which was last diagnosed in New Jersey in 1975. In most cases, the West Nile-like virus causes only mild illness with the following symptoms: fever, headache and body aches, skin rash and swollen lymph glands.
“In some people, there are no symptoms,” explained Mr. McGowan at the DHSS. “You won’t even know you’re infected.”
Indications of a more severe infection are high fever, stiff neck, stupor, disorientation, tremors, occasional convulsions, coma and paralysis. At higher risk are very young or very old individuals with underdeveloped or weakened immune systems.
Going forward, the DHSS will only collect additional bird specimens from areas “where we think we need them,” said Mr. McGowan. Resi
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Scotch Plains Township Council Discusses Pros, Cons of Establishing Shade Tree Commission
By FRED ROSSI
Specially Written for The Times
It looks as if the proposal to establish a formal Shade Tree Commission in Scotch Plains may have hit a dead end.
At its conference meeting on Tuesday night, the Township Council revisited the issue more than four months after the Township Environmental Commission made a lengthy presentation calling for the establishment of a Shade Tree Commission in Scotch Plains.
Last May, the Environmental Commission urged the formation of such a commission in order to educate the public on the importance of trees and tree preservation, creating an historic tree list, locating and securing funding and grants for the replacement and planting of trees and advising on the selection and placement of
any new trees. Among questions raised at the time about forming such a commission were the extent of such a commission’s liability should an accident occur that involved a falling tree or limb and the precise regulatory powers the group would have.
While admitting he hasn’t yet concluded whether the existence of a Shade Tree Commission would lead to the possibility of increased lawsuits and litigation, Township Attorney Andrew M. Baron asked whether creating an independent body would just be “adding another layer of government or could it be done another way?”
One option, he said, would be to amend the Township Code to give additional power to the Environmental Commission.
Saying he opposed forming a separate entity, Councilman Tarquin Jay
Bromley instead proposed the creation of an advisory tree committee.
Expressing his concern over widespread powers a Shade Tree Commission could have, Mr. Bromley said “we don’t need tree cops here.”
Councilman Martin Marks noted that by creating a Shade Tree Commission, the township would have access to various state grants.
But Mayor Geri M. Samuel pointed out that, in order to be eligible for such grants, the proposed commission would have to have “draconian powers.”
Township Manager Thomas E. Atkins told the council it was his experience that people, busy with their lives and families, “are looking for a responsive government.”
“More often than not,” Mr. Atkins said, “commissions don’t do that.”
He added that he has heard of “lots of horror stories” about independent local commissions being less than responsive to constituents, as well as being overzealous.
In one town, Mr. Atkins related, the Shade Tree Commission would not allow the local public works department to cut loose branches from a tree.
On another matter, the council will vote next week on a resolution urging governmental officials to move forward on the completion of the Green Brook Flood Control Project. The project is a decades-old plan to prevent the Green Brook and other floodprone streams in the area from overflowing during heavy rainfalls.
Completion of the project has been delayed at both the federal and local levels by bureaucratic snags, environmental concerns and other matters.
At Tuesday’s meeting, Mayor Samuel said, “it’s time” to get the Green Brook Flood Control Project headed towards completion, especially in the wake of the devastation wrought by Hurricane Floyd last month.
“It has to move forward,” she said, www.VisitScotchPlains.com.
Police Sergeant Steven Freedman and Officer Ernesto Hernandez promoted the township’s D.A.R.E. (Drug Awareness and Resistance Education) program at their winning toss game table, where certificates were given away that could redeemed at a local pet store for live goldfish prizes.
In addition, the Lion’s Club Eye/ Ear Mobile conducted free eye examinations for more than 60 participants.
Many township civic organizations displayed literature at their tables promoting their services, including the Rotary Club of Fanwood-Scotch Plains. Mayor Geri Samuel, a recently inducted Rotary Club member, was on hand to discuss the group’s activities.
Other organizations present were the Scotch Plains-Fanwood Educational Association and the Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School Alumni Association.
Besides coordinating the day’s events, the SPBPA donated the T-shirts and gift certificates given to winners of the morning running races and supplied all of the publicity including advertising banners and posters.
Funds raised by the fair are used to support the SPBPA Scholarship Fund, which awards three $500 scholarships every year.
“It would be nice to coordinate the event for a Sunday, in order to close off the street to traffic, in future years,” Mr. Pardon remarked.
“We may consider expanding the event for an entire weekend next year,” he added.
Page 10 Thursday, October 7, 1999 The Westfield Leader and THE TIMES of Scotch Plains – Fanwood A WATCHUNG COMMUNICATIONS, INC. PUBLICATION
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SCOTCH PLAINS POLICE BLOTTER
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Virus-Infected Crows Turn Up in Surrounding Counties
Township Council Considers Shade Tree Commission
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Fanwood’s TV-35 Weekly Schedule Friday, Oct. 8, 8:00 P.M.
Millennium Clock Dedication
Friday, Oct. 8, 9:30 P.M.
“FYI Fanwood” The Mayor talks with members of the Muhlenberg Coalition for Cardiac Surgery
Sunday, Oct. 10, 7:30 P.M.
Millennium Clock Dedication
Sunday, Oct. 10, 9:00 P.M.
Tuesday, Oct. 12, 8:00 P.M.
COP-TV Use of the 911 emergency number and safety around our schools
Tuesday, Oct. 12, 9:00 P.M.
Autumn in Fanwood
Thursday, Oct. 14, 8:00 P.M.
Live Telecast of the Monthly Fanwood Council Meeting
Crossway Place in Westfield To Close Oct. 12 to Dec. 5
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 30
· A Myrtle Avenue resident reported the theft of loose change from an unlocked vehicle.
· A bicycle was reported stolen from Terrill Middle School during the day.
· An East Second Street resident reported the theft of change from a vehicle.
· Tools were reported stolen from a truck parked at the Union County Vocational School during the day. Entry to the truck was gained by smashing a window.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 1,
· Carlton McMillian, 22, of Newark was arrested for providing a false name to a police officer during a motor vehicle stop on Route 22.
· A resident of Rivervale Court reported the theft of a Mountain bike from
an unlocked storage area in the apartment complex.
· A resident of West Court reported that someone used his identity to make unauthorized bank transactions.
· A 17-year-old and a 15-year-old boy from Scotch Plains were taken into custody for allegedly damaging a door frame of a Southwick Village apartment during a confrontation with another youth. Charges are pending.
· A resident of Raritan Road reported the theft of fireplace accessories that were for sale in her yard.
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 2
· A Westfield Avenue resident reported a cellular telephone was taken from an unlocked vehicle that was parked in the 500 block of Forest Road.
Fanny Wood Day Committee Thanked by Mayor Connelly
FANWOOD — Mayor Maryanne S. Connelly extended appreciation this week to members of the Fanny Wood Day Committee whose efforts contributed to the success of the fourth annual festival held on September 26, as well as the three previous events.
Committee members include Neil Schembre, Chairman; Raymond Manfra, Director of the Fanwood De
partment of Public Works; Helen and Jeffrey Ling, Tricia Scarlata, Pamela and Peter Sayles, David Wendel, Fanwood Police Chief Robert Carboy, Leslie Cunningham, Michael Pannella, Robert McCarthy, Richard Hopkins and Linda Caminiti.
Fanny Wood Day, named for a popular folklore figure, is a community celebration held each September in the borough’s downtown.
Group Sets Bike Collection In Fanwood on October 16
FANWOOD – Pedals for Progress, a not-for-profit corporation that recycles bicycles for use by the needy throughout the world, will hold a used bike collection sponsored by the Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotary Club on Saturday, October 16 from 9 a.m. to noon. It will be held adjacent to Children’s Specialized Hospital, 324 South Avenue, Fanwood.
Bicycles in repairable condition may be donated. Bike parts or disassembled bikes will not be accepted.
Pedals for Progress collects over 8,000 bicycles annually. To date, more than 25,000 bicycles have been shipped to projects in 16 developing countries.
Those bikes are reconditioned by partner agencies and distributed at low cost to poor working adults to give them reliable transportation.
It averages $25 to collect, process, ship, rebuild and distribute a bicycle. A donation of $10 per bike for shipping costs is suggested.
All cash and material donations are tax deductible. Receipts will be available to all donors at the collection.
Pedals for Progress also seeks donations of tools, working portable sewing machines, used baseball equip
Fanwood Planning Board Rejects Dean Oil Site Bid
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Owner on The Job • No Subs
Z Z Z Z Z Free Estimates
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Z Z Z Z Z Residential
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Present Coupon After Estimate. Expires 10/31/99
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tion, because plans called for the building to be constructed three feet off the ground and without a basement. The developer responded that it was the company’s preference not to install a basement, “for a lot of reasons.”
Numerous residents also honed in on other aspects of the prospective development which they deemed as detrimental to the surrounding community, drawing rounds of applause from neighbors in the audience.
Thomas P. Ryan, Jr., Co-Chairman of the FCRD and a Republican candidate for the Borough Council this year, focused on how the prospective building would affect school taxes.
Observing that it costs $9,093 per year to educate a student in the Scotch Plains-Fanwood school district, he cited previous testimony by Mr. Bontempo that the complex would generate $45,000 in taxes. Sixty-one percent, he noted, would go to support local schools.
Based on these figures, he said any more than three students living in the apartments would pose a tax burden to the community. Mr. Mollozzi countered that Mr. Ryan’s own property taxes would leave a $5,000 deficit by the time his child, now a toddler, starts school in three years.
Mr. DiRienzo, who has lived on Belvidere Avenue for 27 years and has long been active in community recreation programs, reeled off a handful of reasons why he felt the complex was inappropriate for the site, concluding that “there is nothing positive to the community or the neighborhood from this building.”
He said the lack of a recreation area for the facility would lead to overcrowding of LaGrande Park directly across the street. In addition, Mr. DiRienzo cited the importance of establishing “a viable downtown,” saying the property represents 20 percent of the land which is suitable for commercial use.
Mr. DiRienzo additionally protested the applicant’s plan to make parking spaces narrower than the standard 10-foot by 20-foot measurements. He charged that Mr. Bontempo was “looking to maximize his investment rather than make the project fit to zoning regulations.”
He conceded that while any other development proposals would have to be judged on their individual merits, he strongly believed that commercial use of the property would be most ideal.
The attorney, who said he has handled real estate closings in the area, charged that the property’s current owner, Savers’ Shares of Morristown, has not “aggressively marketed” the lot, claiming it was
originally on the market for close to $1 million.
Perhaps the most poignant testimony of the evening came from Michelle Fugett, a neighbor of the Dean Oil site, who described how she and her husband found their “dream house” in that neighborhood and were enjoying raising their young daughter in Fanwood’s “quaint, small town atmosphere.”
Saying she felt the two-story building, which another resident had likened to “army barracks,” would take away from the ambiance of their neighborhood, Mrs. Fugett implored the board not to “make our dreams fade away as quickly as they come true.”
Former Republican council contender Wilfred P. Coronato of Cray Terrace advised the board not to be “lulled” into thinking that the property would be vacant for another 10 years or would never be developed commercially, saying people just needed to take a “proactive role” toward that objective.
He also commented that no sworn testimony had been given by anyone on behalf of the applicants concerning traffic. Instead, he recalled, Mr. Mollozzi had questioned Richard Maser, a traffic consultant retained by the board, during an earlier meeting.
Although several board members believed housing would be a positive use of the property, lingering concerns over possible contamination, density and potential overuse of the park ultimately led the board to deny the application.
Board Vice Chairman Jack Molenaar, who cast the lone vote in favor of the application, later told
The Times he felt the apartment complex would not be too dense for the property and that environmental concerns could be addressed.
Planning Board members had 120 days from the time the completed application was submitted to hear the case. The developers had the opportunity to ask for an extension, but declined, compelling the board to vote strictly on the evidence it had by last week, Mr. Cummings said.
Mr. Ryan said he was “very pleased” with the outcome of the case, adding that the Planning Board “considered all the evidence” before rendering its decision. He also thanked fellow FCRD members for handing out flyers and performing other tasks, as well as making the board aware of widespread opposition to the application.
“We got a great group of people with a great variety of skills,” concurred Mr. DiRienzo. “We really rallied the neighbors in a way you hadn’t seen before.”
Columbus Day to be Marked By Local UNICO Chapter
SCOTCH PLAINS — The Scotch Plains-Fanwood Chapter of UNICO National, the Scotch Plains Italian American Club and the Father Nelligan Council of the Knights of Columbus will celebrate Columbus Day at the Scotch Plains Municipal Building on Park Avenue on Monday, October 11, at 10 a.m.
The program will begin with an Invocation by the Reverend Michael A. Merlucci, Pastor of St. Bartholomew the Apostle Roman Catholic Church in Scotch Plains.
Brief comments will be made by State Senate President Donald T.
DiFrancesco, Scotch Plains Mayor Geri M. Samuel, Fanwood Mayor Maryanne S. Connelly, representatives from the Italian American Club, the Knights of Columbus and UNICO.
The winners of the contest on “Civilization and Its Italian Roots,” will read their compositions. A time capsule with memorabilia and history of the Italian American Club, the Knights of Columbus, and UNICO, will be buried near the Christopher Columbus Monument.
The festivities will conclude with the laying of a wreath at the monument.
The public is invited to attend. WESTFIELD – Crossway Place
in Westfield, the road that travels between North and South Avenues near the town’s Department of Public Works, will be closed to traffic beginning Tuesday, October 12 and continuing through Sunday, December 5.
The road is scheduled to reopen Monday, December 6.
The road will be closed because of renovation that is being done to the NJ Transit bridge that goes over Crossway Place, said Town Engineer Kenneth B. Marsh.
Scotch Plains-Fanwood Board of Education Appoints New Official
SCOTCH PLAINS — The Scotch Plains-Fanwood Board of Education has approved the appointment of Anthony Del Sordi as the district’s new Business Administrator and Board Secretary.
Mr. Del Sordi, a graduate of Seton Hall University in South Orange, held a similar position in Ridgewood. In addition to accounting experience in business, he also acquired school business experience with the Linden, Morris Hills, and Paramus public schools.
He is expected to join the staff in Scotch Plains-Fanwood on Wednesday, December 1.
Mr. Del Sordi will replace the current Business Administrator/Board Secretary, Matthew Clarke, who will be leaving the district to relocate to Kentucky.
The NJ Transit renovation project, which began this spring, is a $1.4 million plan that includes the replacement of the current steel structure with one made of concrete. The current bridge was built in 1915.
It predates NJ Transit and may have been built before the Central Railroad of New Jersey operated the railway that previously ran on the Raritan Valley track.
When the project was originally discussed, Mr. Marsh had been told that the renovation would require that the street only be closed for a week at a time several times throughout the work. In recent talks with NJ Transit officials, however, Mr. Marsh was told that once the contractor got into the project, it was discovered that the road needed to be closed for a longer period of time.
Mr. Marsh said the contractor needs to erect a permanent scaffolding around the bridge, which will prohibit traffic from traveling back and forth. Originally, the contract thought the abutments could serve as scaffoldings, but has found that is not possible, Mr. Marsh explained.
Upon completion of the project in the spring, the Town of Westfield will have to work on Crossway Place again to widen and straighten the road, but Mr. Marsh does not think that will necessitate closing the thoroughfare.
dents are encouraged to take precautions when handling any dead birds they may find.
Individuals are advised to wear gloves and to double-bag birds before disposing of them in the trash.
Questions about the West Nile-like virus or dead bird sightings should be directed to local health officials. The Westfield Regional Health Department, which also serves Fanwood, Garwood, Mountainside, Roselle Park and Springfield, may be reached at (908) 789-4070. The Scotch Plains Health Department may be reached at (908) 322-6700.
To reduce the likelihood of mosquito bites, Mr. Sherr reiterated the need for residents to take the following precautions:
· Wear long pants and long-sleeve shirts outdoors.
· Use mosquito repellent that contains DEET.
· Curb outdoor activity between dusk and dawn.
· Avoid mosquito breeding areas.
· Eliminate standing water (a potential mosquito breeding area) on personal property which can accumulate in such things as empty recycling pails, old tires and backyard pool covers.
“This is something to be concerned about until the first frost, though we’re in a lot better shape than New York City,” said Mr. Sherr. “People should continue to take preventative measures until the first one to two good frosts.”
However, the Westfield health official believes the virus will not go away forever with the onset of frost, but will likely reoccur in the spring.
“You can’t kill off the entire mosquito population,” said Mr. Sherr. “It’s likely something that will develop on an annual basis. It’s amazing that this is the first time it’s popped up, given all the things mosquitoes carry. It shows a real need for mosquito control activities.”
Twenty of New Jersey’s 21 counties have active mosquito control programs. Only Hunterdon County does not.
Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotary Discusses Substance Abuse
SCOTCH PLAINS — The Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotary Club dedicated a recent luncheon meeting to the topic of alcoholism and drug abuse and the impact on the community.
The guest speaker was Diane Litterer, Executive Director of the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence of Union County (NCADDUC).
Mrs. Litterer focused primarily on the economic damage to commerce and industry, for employers small and large, caused by alcoholism and abuse of other drugs. The cost of test production, as well as sickness and injury caused by addiction that flows through the economy was also discussed.
Mrs. Litterer also addressed the impact of substance abuse upon family members and friends.
The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence is dedicated to public education, starting with programs designed to offer help to the youngest of children in school, continuing through a program for seniors.
For more information, please call
ADDRESSING ABUSE…The Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotary Club dedicated a recent luncheon meeting to the topic of alcoholism and drug abuse and the impact on the community. The guest speaker was Diane Litterer, Executive Director of the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence of Union County (NCADDUC). Mrs. Litterer meets with Raymond A. Jaiko, member of the Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotary and President of the NCADDUC Board of Trustees.
the NCADDUC at (908) 322-1700, or Rotary Club Member Raymond A. Jajko at (908) 322-1700.
ment and used soccer cleats. For detailed information about the overseas projects and a current schedule of bicycle collections, please visit www.p4p.org.
Mother and Daughter Seminar Announced by Freeholders
SCOTCH PLAINS – “The Times of Her Life: Mothers and Daughters,” a free seminar sponsored by the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the Union County Commission on the Status of Women will be held on Saturday, October 16, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Scotch Plains Municipal Building.
A continental breakfast will be served.
Guest speakers and topics will include “Addiction and Women” by Maryann Higgins, “The Mother/ Daughter Conflict by Dr. Judy Dederick, “Eating Disorders” by Suzanne Rubinetti, “Violence Against Women” by Linda Van Fossen and “Raising Strong Daughters” by Wendy K. Kolmar, Associate Professor at Drew University.
“The seminar is the second in ‘The Times of Her Life’ series, which fo
cuses on the milestones in a woman’s life,” said Freeholder Mary P. Ruotolo, Liaison to the Union County commission on the Status of Women. “These seminars reflect the Freeholder Board’s continuing support for women’s issues.”
“By providing this seminar at no charge, we hope that women from across the county will be able to attend this event,” said Carolyn Vollero, Chairwoman of the Commission on the Status of Women. “We want to share information while offering Union County women an opportunity to come together and meet with professionals who can share their expertise and experience.”
For more information and to register, please call Karen Fountain at (908) 771-5726.
Newcomers Club Slates Welcome Tea for Oct. 21
SCOTCH PLAINS — The Scotch Plains-Fanwood Newcomers Club will hold a welcome tea on Thursday, October 21, at 8 p.m. at the Fanwood Presbyterian Church in Fanwood.
The tea, which was originally scheduled in September, was postponed due to Hurricane Floyd.
The welcome tea is an annual event that welcomes new residents, residents who have had a recent lifestyle change such as marriage, a new baby and a change in employment and acquaint them with the members and activities of the club.
The Scotch Plains-Fanwood Newcomers Club is a non-profit, social organization with over 100 member families.
For more information on the welcome tea or other Newcomers Club activities, please call Club President Laura Burns at (908) 889-0337. adding that the resolution will be sent
to all appropriate local, county, state and federal officials.
On a related matter, the Mayor, joined by Mr. Marks and several top officials, will meet soon with township residents who were among the hardest hit by last month’s flooding.
At last week’s council meeting, several residents from the north side of town complained about what they said was the local government’s “insensitivity” to their plight.
Separately, the council received a letter from John Ferrara, Jr., owner of The Stage House Inn restaurant on
Park Avenue, complaining about a banner hung across Park Avenue during the Christmas holiday season by the Fanwood-Scotch Plains Kiwanis Club to advertise its luminaries sale.
Mr. Ferrara stated that, given the efforts of local businesses to decorate their own properties, “the focal point of a drive into the Scotch Plains business district should not be a banner that serves a special interest group.”
The council was unanimous in its agreement with Mr. Ferrara, and Mayor Samuel said the Kiwanis Club will be asked to promote its luminaries sale in another way.
Literacy Volunteers Set Workshop Programs
SCOTCH PLAINS — Literacy Volunteers of America Union County Affiliate has announced its new 1999 fall workshop programs for the training of tutors.
The first English As A Second Language workshop will be held at the Hillside Public Library.
Registration will be held Saturday, October 16, at 10 a.m. Classes will start on Saturday, October 16, and continue on Saturdays, October 23, 30, November 6, 13 and 20. Classes will be held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
A second English As a Second Language workshop will held at the Linden Public Library. Registration will be held on Wednesday, October 20, at 6 p.m. Classes start on Wednesday, October 20, and continue through Wednesdays, October 27, November 3, 10, 17 and December 1. Classes will be held from 6 to 9 p.m.
A third English as a Second Language workshop will be held at the Elizabeth (Main Branch) Public Library. Registration will be held on Tuesday, October 26, at 6 p.m. Classes start on Tuesday, October 26, and continue through Tuesdays, November 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30. Classes will be held from 6 to 9 p.m.
The final English as a Second Language workshop will be held at the Springfield Public Library. Registration will be Monday, November 1, at 6 p.m. Classes start on Monday, November 1, and continue through Mondays, November 8, 15, 22, 29 and December 6. Classes will be held from 6 to 9 p.m.
Abigail O’Neill of Scotch Plains was named to the Dean’s List for the 1999 spring semester at Ithaca College, Ithaca, N.Y.
Richard Lukas of Scotch Plains was named to the Dean’s Commendation List for the 1999 spring semester at Gettysburg College, Gettysburg, Pa.
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