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Mr. Albano Says Town Should Take Advantage Of New Shared Service Law
WESTFIELD – Republican Second Ward Councilman Matthew P. Albano said this week said he strongly encourages the Town of Westfield to take advantage of a new law signed by Governor Christine Todd Whitman designed to help municipalities reduce local costs through shared service agreements with other towns.
The Regional Efficiency Development Incentive Program (REDI) offers $10 million in grants and loans to help local officials study, develop and implement new shared service programs.
“This is a powerful tool that we should use to help keep property taxes in check,” said Councilman Albano.
“The town Health Department already has a shared services agree
ments with other towns within the county, saving taxpayers significant dollars. The REDI program will enable Westfield to explore expanding partnerships with other towns,” he said.
“For instance, field maintenance and the library are two areas where we may be able to work with other towns to maintain high quality services at the lowest possible cost,” he noted.
Councilman Albano said he strongly supports the submission by the Town Council of an application to the Department of Community Affairs.
“We can’t afford to pass up this opportunity since it could ultimately result in real savings for Westfield taxpayers,” said Councilman Albano.
Councilman Albano can be reached for comment at (908) 317-9044 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Councilman Populus Outlines Issues of Priority
Councilman Populus pointed to his record of bringing $1 million in grant revenue into the community in the last five years. He also stressed that, “reductions in municipal expenditures and improving the utilization of existing borough resources are effective strategies for relieving taxpayer burden.”
Several of his initiatives, included increasing the interest earned on mu
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 5
nicipal bank deposits and achieving significant savings on insurance expenses, have also made a sizable impact, demonstrating his sense of fiscal responsibility. In three of the last five years, Fanwood taxpayers have seen no increase in their tax bills.
Another issue at the top of the Councilman’s list of priorities is downtown revitalization.
“Fanwood’s downtown is small and fragmented,” he explained. “While we can’t compete with the malls and larger downtown shopping districts like Westfield, we can create a steady stream of commercial tax revenue and a vibrant, attractive and appealing downtown area.”
Councilman Populus pointed to his recent success in obtaining $400,000 in county and state grants for sidewalks, lighting and streetscaping. He also secured an additional $10,000 in county funds to plan for the redevelopment of the vacant Dean Oil site and to study the potential for relocating Fanwood’s Post Office.
“We have received tremendous support from our Board of Chosen Freeholders and our New Jersey State Legislators. That support is greatly appreciated,” added Mr. Populus.
“We have a vision for the future of Fanwood,” said Councilman Populus. “One that will take us to new heights in the coming century. We have the plan, we have the money and we have the will to do what’s right for Fanwood.”
GOP Candidate Frank Rossi Sums Up Campaign Goals
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cent, we have more crossing guards, our crosswalks are more visible, and we have better lighting in key areas.
“In addition, traffic calming measures will be implemented on Rahway Avenue this fall to slow cars and trucks in an area frequented by many pedestrians, including over 2,500 students. Also, a state-funded pedestrian safety plan for downtown and school zones is in process,” he reported.
Councilman Sullivan recently attended the Walk NJ Pedestrian Conference, along with several members of the BRAKES group (Bikers, Runners And Kids are Entitled to Safety), at which current topics in pedestrian safety were addressed by statewide and national leaders in the field.
“The actions we are taking to slow
Neil F. Sullivan Receives Positive Input on Campaign
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 8
traffic and reduce the dangers on our streets are the right ones,” Councilman Sullivan stated, “In fact, several times during panel discussions, planners who are familiar with our community cited Westfield as a community that is ‘doing things the right way.’ I am running for re-election so that I can help see these projects to a successful completion.”
Councilman Sullivan is also a member of the Transportation, Parking and Traffic Committee, and Laws and Rules Committee. He serves as Council Liaison to the Westfield Area Chamber of Commerce and the media advisory board revitalizing TV-36.
He can be reached at (908) 232-0168 or via e-mail at email@example.com. His campaign website is www. homestead.com/westfield.
“Being a parent of three young children, I am particularly sensitive to two issues that also came up quite frequently in my conversations with voters; the public school system and the need for additional recreation facilities in town. Of course, we have a separately elected Board of Education that has the direct responsibility for education issues facing our community,” the candidate continued.
“However, I think that there can be productive interaction between the board and the municipal government in order to address issues such as sharing services, and long-range planning as it relates to the increasing numbers of school-aged children in town,” said Mr. Rossi.
“That is why I have proposed the formation of a joint task force comprised of representatives of the Board of Education, and from both the Scotch Plains and Fanwood Councils, in order to foster a better sense of coordina
tion and cooperation on such matters,” he said.
“On a related note, the increasing numbers of children have also placed a burden on our recreation facilities. That is why I have lauded the efforts of Councilmen McClintock and Marks when they proposed a plan for five new ballfields in five years last year and then followed through with ‘A Recreation Plan for the 21st Century’ earlier this year,” Mr. Rossi noted.
“We are already starting to see the fruits of these efforts and it is comforting to see that their colleagues on council have joined them to make this a unanimous, bipartisan endeavor,” he continued.
“I have tried to be receptive to new thoughts and ideas from residents as I met with them. However, being open to residents should not only take place during campaign season. It must continue throughout one’s elected term,” Mr. Rossi stated.
Letters to the Editor
Resident Feels Westfield Home Would be Ruined by Expanded Pool
There are proposals in Westfield relating to the Memorial Pool and Park which threaten the entire contiguous area. We feel very strongly that our home will be ruined by two elements of the pool plan. Many residents surrounding the WMPC have equally compelling concerns.
Our address has been the family homestead for over 60 years. In 1968,
my grandfather reluctantly relinquished his rear property, which he had owned since the mid 1940s, to the town. He had no other choice in the matter as he was told that the land would be condemned if he did not sell. This property abutted Memorial Pool. At that time, he was assured, as were his neighbors, that the area would act as a buffer between the pool and the homes. So began a tolerable coexistence.
As the years passed, encroachment by both day and night activity grew unquestionably. Yet, the buffer area offered a degree of normalcy in the backyards.
Let us move forward in time to the recent past. The West Broad Street side pool fence was in disrepair and needed replacement. In checking property lines for a new fence, some individuals saw the buffer land in a new and ambitious light. They fancied this area as ripe for recreation.
Today we see, to add insult to injury, that a new, large pool is being proposed in this very spot! It is hard to believe that current planners would be to callous as to disregard Westfield’s long-standing respected position. No additional pool membership dollar gained can be worth cramming new illadvised recreation on all perimeters.
Area residents of Memorial Pool and Park are united in opposition to the expansion plan in any area where our quality of life is undermined. Please join us in protecting our homes.
Mr. and Mrs. Michael Gonnella Westfield
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Town Should Consider Residents to Volunteer
Time as Consultants
Before we seek to hire high-paying consultants to provide us with their specialized expertise, perhaps our City Fathers could entertain the option of utilizing the many-faceted voluntary talents of our own resident CEO’s and upper-management people, either presently employed or retired.
Many of these individuals have advanced education and the work experience to provide Westfield with the necessary input when some issues of improvement or change require consideration.
This pool of talent might be a costcutting factor whenever there is some projected change and in addition to financial constraints, there could also be a thorough review of whether the change does serve the common good and not merely a minor but vocal segment of our community.
Not all issues can be so readily handled, i.e. traffic safety problems, as presented October 10 on Channel 36. But even these studies might be available for our own consultants to glean pertinent highlights.
Faye DeGoff Westfield
Pancake Breakfast Planned By Fanwood Republicans
FANWOOD — The Fanwood Republican Club will hold its second annual pancake breakfast on Sunday, October 24, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Fanwood Community
Center, North Side of the train station.
Pancakes, eggs, sausage, juice, coffee, tea and all accompaniments will be served. There will be balloons available for children.
Adult meals are $5 each, children from 6-12 years are $3 each and children under 6 are free. Payment will be accepted at the door.
This year’s servers will include Louis C. Jung, Stuart K. Kline and Thomas P. Ryan.
Mr. Jung, a current councilman, is running for Mayor in the upcoming November election. Mr. Kline, who is also a current councilman, is running for his second term. Mr. Ryan, their running mate, is running for council for the first time.
For additional information or directions, please call Pat Lindsey at (908) 322-8801.
Mountainside GOP Schedules Festival
MOUNTAINSIDE – The Mountainside Republican Club is sponsoring a Fall Family Festival for residents on Saturday, October 30, from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Mountainside Borough Hall Soccer Field. Admission is free.
Attractions will include pony rides, moon walk, trackless train rides, face-painting and spin art. Autumn refreshments also will be served free of charge.
Campaign Forum ’99
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Two area students were named to the spring 1999 dean’s list at the University of Hartford, West Hartford, Conn.
Laura Lombardi of Westfield was named to the dean’s list at the University of Hartford College of Education, Nursing & Health Professions.
Petra Domingo of Scotch Plains was named to the dean’s list at the University of Hartford’s Hartford Art School.
* * * * * SCOTCH PLAINS – Christopher A. Henn of Scotch Plains was named to the spring 1999 dean’s list at Western New England College, Springfield, Mass.
Covering Fanwood, Mountainside, Scotch Plains and Westfield, Union County, New Jersey (NJ)