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Scotch Plains – Fanwood Scotch Plains – Fanwood Scotch Plains – Fanwood Scotch Plains – Fanwood Scotch Plains – Fanwood THE TIMES

OUR 39th YEAR – ISSUE NO. 22- 98 Published Every Thursday USPS 485200

Periodical – Postage Paid at Scotch Plains, N. J. Thursday, May 28, 1998

of of of of of

— Serving Scotch Plains and Fanwood Since 1959 —

Jorge Lopez Suero for The Times A TOWNSHIP LANDMARK... Youngsters stand in the new gazebo in downtown Scotch Plains prior to the start of the Scotch Plains- Fanwood Memorial Day Parade. Considering the heavy thunderstorm that rolled through the area Monday morning and canceled the parade, they may have had the best spot. New Gazebo in Scotch Plains Viewed

As Downtown Landmark for Visitors By JEANNE WHITNEY

Specially Written for The Times

What else can be said about the new gazebo on the Village Green in Scotch Plains at the corner of Front Street and Park Avenue? As residents watch, it nears completion.

Township Council members said they hoped to dedicate the gazebo on Memorial Day this year, but construction was delayed by 13 rainy days in a row this month.

Councilman Martin Marks said simply, "We'll have the dedication on another day."

The latest addition to the Village Green was the brainchild of Ray Pardon, President of the Scotch Plains Business and Professional Association and a member of the Downtown Development Committee.

"We decided we needed a landmark — that was easy for visitors to spot — in the downtown," Mr. Pardon explained.

The gazebo is part of a "Hometown Feeling" campaign theme to revitalize the downtown district.

Township Council members fell in line with support for the gazebo project after Union County Vocational- Technical Schools teachers and students agreed to take on the design and building of the structure as part of a class assignment.

Materials were donated by Messercola Brothers Building Company of Westfield, Ralph Checchio and others. An electrician said he was hired to wire the gazebo for lights. Eastern Marble & Granite Supply Company will donate a freestanding column and dedication plaque for the gazebo at the site.

Carpentry and construction instructor on the project, Paul Milea, said Vo- Tech students also donated work on the historic Fanwood train station as well as built a house in South Plainfield with the volunteer organization Habitat for Humanity, last year.

"Basically, our classes teach students how to build homes," Mr. Milea said.

Senior instructor Skip Knittel created the design of the 16- foot wide gazebo "out of his head," according to Mr. Milea.

Vo- Tech masonry students built the foundation of the Victorian- style structure, thereby raising the roof about 13 feet off the ground. Some have said the wooden gazebo will remain a natural wood finish that requires less maintenance, while others have said they imagine a traditional white gazebo on the corner of the Green.

Still others have questioned the corner location of the gazebo while Council members claimed that any other spot on the Village Green would interfere with the popular summer concert series.

According to plans, the gazebo roof is shingle and waist- high lattice will surround the structure. Anticipated uses for the site include weddings, photo and special event set

ZOO PURCHASE AND AUTOMATION OF TOWNSHIP LIBRARY INCLUDED

Scotch Plains Council OKs $4.4 Million Municipal Bond Sales for Eight Projects

By JEANNE WHITNEY

Specially Written for The Times

The Scotch Plains Township Council agreed Tuesday to authorize up to $4.4 million in bond sales for the municipality, in order to move ahead with eight projects including the purchase of the former Scotch Plains Zoo property; a sanitary sewer upgrade; automation of the township library and fire equipment purchases, among other items.

Township officials emphasized that the debt is considered "temporary," since the bond anticipation notes are only one year financing.

Councilman William F. McClintock, Jr. explained that after a year, the township would have a clearer picture of just how much to borrow under long term bonds.

"This ($ 4.4 million) can cover capital improvement ordinances over perhaps a five- to seven- year period," he said.

The total amount covers an estimate on the condemned zoo property, set at close to $600,000. The township recently received a supple mental $100,000 grant from Union

County under its Project Pocket Park Program, which has also been earmarked for the property.

However, since the current owner of the former zoo site, Sunrise Assisted Living, has said it will challenge the township's claim to ownership of the six acres, it remains to be seen whether the township will indeed need the half million dollars in funding.

Also part of the total bond issue is the $1.7 million sewer system upgrade for the township's south side, which got the go- ahead from the council late last year but which fell

victim to a rocky start after low bidders for the work were convicted in bid rigging schemes on other deals.

The project will upgrade sewer pumping stations while adding additional pipes to handle anticipated increased flow.

The planned library automation will run about $142,000, according to an ordinance passed in January. Over the next year and a half, the library staff will log all materials into a computer system, and computer terminals will be added to the library that are connected to the Internet.

On a different matter, the council unanimously agreed to limit parking

on Sycamore Avenue to two hours during the week, after residents complained that employees from a nearby cleaning service jammed the avenue with parked cars instead of using the commercial parking lot.

The council also agreed on Tuesday to post lower speed limits on Rahway Road after residents reportedly complained of motorists speeding through the municipality between the Township of Edison and the City of Rahway.

The speed limit is now 25 milesper- hour between the Union County and Middlesex County borders to Winchester Drive and between Nepawin Lane and the Plainfield border. Between Winchester Drive and Nepawin Lane, the speed limit will be 30 miles- per- hour.

Under another traffic ordinance, the council agreed to add a stop sign on Sleepy Hollow Lane at the Sunnyfield Lane intersection.

In a separate matter, the council unanimously voted to award nearly $19,000 to Helios Construction, Inc., of Ocean, for improvements to the basement lavatory of the Municipal Building. The same company was previously awarded $33,194 for barrier free improvements to the site.

Township officials also awarded a $19,680 contract for painting lines on the roads to All- American Line Stripers. Another $33,000 was allotted to EK Construction in Somerset for barrier free improvements to Green Forest Park.

As a result of a phone- in question to the council earlier this month, Mayor Joan Papen explained that the Planning Board and Board of Adjustment could not be combined into one panel in Scotch Plains because the option is limited, by the state, to towns with populations of less than 10,000.

Scotch Plains' population is about 28,000. Fanwood, which has a population of slightly more than 7,100, recently combined its two boards.

Under another matter, Dr. Walter E. Boright, Chairman of the Scotch Plains Democratic Committee and a former county Freeholder, told the council that developers of Winchester Estates have ignored the requests of neighbors to plant a particular type of tree along the streets of the subdivision.

Dr. Boright claimed developers began planting maple trees — which neighbors say they do not want — with the okay from the township's Engineering Department. Mayor Papen said she would act on the information.

Dr. Boright added, "There are specific code requirements for planting trees. Residents should not be a victim to the whims of a developer."

In other activities, the council recognized local Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts for their work on the Brookside Park walking trails.

Councilwoman Irene T. Schmidt said the scouts lined trails with timber and spread wood chips along the length of the trail.

The council also recognized township police officers for their work, while Chief of Police Thomas F. O'Brien presented awards to members of the force.

Of the many awards, Officer Patrick Page proved tops in traffic enforcement, as was Officer Kevin Lonergan in arrests. Last week was National Police Week, remembering those killed in the line of duty.

Freeholders Approve Amended Waste Plan For Incinerator Lease

By PAUL J. PEYTON

Specially Written for The Times

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders last Thursday approved several changes to the county's Solid Waste Management Plan, thus paving the way for the lease of the county's Resource Recovery Facility, commonly referred to as the garbage incinerator, to Ogden Martin Systems of Union, Inc., the manufacturer of the facility.

As part of the proposed lease agreement, all 21 municipalities have been invited to sign 25- year contracts with the Union County Utilities Authority (UCUA) to continue dumping at the incinerator. The authority now plans to have the deal in place by Monday, June 15, a delay over its initial deadline of January 1.

Seven towns, among them Westfield, Scotch Plains and Fanwood, have opted against the arrangement since they do not provide for garbage collection in local property taxes.

In order to sign on with the county, a community must either contract for solid waste disposal or collect trash as a municipal service. The other 14 towns in the county have waste disposal included in their budgets.

Towns and haulers will be charged $50 a ton during the length of the contract to dump at the incinerator, with increases based on hikes in the Consumer Price Index (CPI).

Under the lease, Union County would guarantee 250,000 tons of solid waste to the facility over the length of the contract. Ogden Martin will pay $175 million in lease payments which will be used towards the outstanding bonds on the incinerator.

Additional revenue will be raised through the inclusion of an Environmental Investment Charge (EIC) to be included on all trash generated in the county.

The Union County Solid Waste Advisory Committee (SWAC) had requested that the board not take action on the lease deal or amendment to the solid waste plan at this time.

Eric D. Wisler, of the law firm of Decotis, Fitzpatrick & Gluck of Teaneck, special counsel to the UCUA, explained to the board that the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) essentially approved the amended document on April 30. The plan was submitted to the NJDEP following approval by the Freeholder board in December.

In order to stay competitive in a free market system for solid waste disposal, the UCUA dropped the tipping fee charged to haulers to dispose of garbage at the incinerator from $83.05 to $50 a ton.

Doug Bishop Named County Scholar- Athlete

Scotch Plains- Fanwood High School senior and scholar- athlete, Doug Bishop, has been named the Union County Male Scholar- Athlete of the Year for 1998.

Bishop, a National Merit Scholarship winner who ranks third in his class, lettered in three sports during his high school career.

He was a two- year varsity starter on the boys soccer team and, as a defensive stalwart, helped his team capture two conference championships, a county championship, two state sectional championships, and the 1997 State Championship. He was named to First Team- All County and Second Team- All State.

Bishop was also a two- year starter during his three years on the varsity basketball team and served as Captain as a senior. He and his team were conference champs. In addition, he was a two- year starter on the varsity baseball team and was named Captain as a senior.

Bishop, who also attended the 1997 American Legion Boys' State program, participated in the French National Honor Society/ Club and was named a New Jersey Bloustein Scholar, will attend Amherst College in Massachusetts in the fall.

Kate Vanderheyden, the Scotch Plains- Fanwood High School Female Scholar- Athlete who was nominated for county recognition, also has outstanding credentials.

An honor roll student, she was a four- year varsity athlete in soccer, basketball, and track, being named Team Captain in all three sports.

Vanderheyden was also named Most Valuable Player in soccer. In addition to her interscholastic activities, she also found time to participate for three years in intramural volleyball. Vanderheyden will attend

the University of Wisconsin in September. Superintendent of Schools Dr. Carol B. Choye, in her recent address as "Superintendent of the Year" before the New Jersey Association of School Administrators, commented, "Our district is blessed to have outstanding students, an excellent staff, and a caring, supportive community.

"Students like Doug and Kate, who have successfully demonstrated their abilities and commitment in both academics and athletics, are exemplary members of the Scotch PlainsFanwood learning community whose accomplishments make us all justifiably proud."

Jorge Lopez Suero for The Times READY TO MARCH... Women veterans stand next to a replica of the USS New Jersey battleship in anticipation of marching in Monday's Scotch Plains- Fanwood Memorial Day Parade. Women veterans were to have served as the parade's Grand Marshal. The parade had to be canceled due to a heavy thunderstorm. An in- door ceremony was held instead at the Scotch Plains Municipal Building.

tings and as a parade viewing stand. Another phase of the Downtown Development campaign includes adding sidewalk benches to the district, Mr. Pardon said. Business- sponsored welcoming signs have already begun to appear at the entrances to the commercial district.

"Hometown Feeling" banners will soon wave from utility poles. Last year, Scotch Plains- Fanwood High School marketing students and the Business and Professional Association produced a first- time business directory for the township.

Mr. Pardon, who is also the owner of Nuts n' Plenty on Park Avenue, said he labored four years to gather support for a plan to enhance the downtown area.

"We want to make (the area) pedestrian friendly and give it an identity as the 'Towne Centre, '" he said. "The gazebo is a nice project — and it adds to the hometown feeling."

David B. Corbin for The Times SCHOLAR- ATHLETE OF THE YEAR... Scotch Plains- Fanwood High School senior, Douglas Bishop, a National Merit Scholarship winner and three- sport varsity athlete, has been named Union County's Male Scholar- Athlete for 1998. Here, he is congratulated by Superintendent of Schools Dr. Carol B. Choye for his outstanding record of scholastic and athletic achievements during his high school career. Joining them are Kate Vanderheyden, a four- year participant in three varsity sports, who is the Scotch Plains- Fanwood High School Female Scholar- Athlete for 1998.

CONTINUED ON PAGE 10 Jorge Lopez Suero for The Times FEATS OF STRENGTH... Brian Piccola tries out a carnival game during the

Memorial Day celebration in Fanwood's LaGrande Park on Monday. Area residents enjoyed an array of food and activities at the event despite overcast skies and a morning thunderstorm.

Page 10 Thursday, May 28, 1998 The Westfield Leader and THE TIMES of Scotch Plains – Fanwood A WATCHUNG COMMUNICATIONS, INC. PUBLICATION

Artslink 2x5½

Nuts Box 2x2

CANINE COMPANIONS… Katherine Mitchell, a Democratic candidate for the Fanwood Borough Council, recently attended the free rabies clinic sponsored by the Fanwood Health Department. Ms. Mitchell, a registered nurse with the Visiting Nurse Association of Central Jersey in Woodbridge, is also the Fanwood Democratic Committee Chairwoman.

In order to keep the facility financially afloat, Ogden Martin was permitted to accept waste on a "spot market" basis. This is defined as waste from communities or haulers who need a temporary site for disposal.

Spot market waste was being accepted for as low as $35 a ton. Currently, that number is now around $42.

In response to the loss of regulatory control of the solid waste industry, the UCUA and the county have proposed a restructuring plan for the debt on the incinerator. This plan addresses the estimated $16 million loss in revenues, or $2 million a month, since the $50 tipping fee was imposed on November 10.

Ogden Martin is said to have incurred a loss of $125,000 a month, an amount that is expected to reach $750,000 come June 15. This figure includes cash flow for daily operational expenses and funds needed to pay the outstanding debt on the facility, which stands at $293,670,000.

Since the drop in the tipping fee, the incinerator is said to be running at about 95 percent of capacity when all four its burners are operating.

Among the changes the NJDEP has sought are agreements with the J& J Recycling Company, Inc., in Elizabeth, and the Linden Landfill. J& J currently has the UCUA contract to process and market bulky, vegetative and industrial waste. The residue from this waste is disposed of at the Linden Landfill, also by UCUA contract.

However, as a result of a 1996 Federal court ruling which essentially deregulated the solid waste industry, the NJDEP said contracts for disposal of these types of waste need to be issued through the competitive bid process from firms in or outside of Union County and New Jersey, thus allowing for a system of interstate commerce in accordance with the court decision.

The UCUA, however, has gained NJDEP approval to continue flow control over these types of waste. The UCUA will receive bids on the processing and disposal of commercial and bulky waste contracts on Friday, June 5.

Another area of concern for the NJDEP was the EIC. The fee, originally set at $18.06, is included in the $50 fee being offered to towns as part of the municipal contracts. It will also be collected on all trash not disposed of at the incinerator through a system of weigh stations.

The final EIC fee proposed has not been settled on at this time. In addition to stranded debt, the EIC includes stranded host community fee and stranded administrative components and transition costs.

The UCUA has proposed to increase the stranded debt compo nent of the EIC from $13.53 to

$13.98 per ton. The state Local Finance Board has approved an additional $1.85 charge on top of the $13.98, should the lease not be implemented by June 15. This fee, UCUA officials have indicated through the plan amendment, is expected to be sufficient to fund pre- restructuring transaction costs for an additional three months.

Under the amended Solid Waste Management Plan, the county's Department of Health would now take on the cost of enforcing the solid waste plan, including collection of the EIC. These costs have been estimated by the UCUA at $500,000 for enforcement and $1,553,119 for operating and administrative costs.

The UCUA budget is to be slashed from $4.1 million to $1.53 million as Ogden Martin takes over the operation of the incinerator.

The court decision ended the state's system of waste flow controls. Prior to the ruling, each county dictated where its waste was to be disposed of through their solid waste management plans. The court ruled that the waste flow controls violated the interstate commerce clause of the United States Constitution.

William G. Kravec, II, of Westfield, Chairman of SWAC, urged the board not to take further action, noting — among other concerns — that legislation introduced in the State Senate on May 15 would place a 3 percent tax on all solid waste in the state and would, more importantly, not allow the imposition of an EIC fee. The legislation is just one of many at the state and Federal levels aimed at the solid waste industry.

Kerri Blanchard, of Rahway, representing the Concerned Citizens of Union County, a group that has long opposed the incinerator, said she was strongly opposed to the county and UCUA "bailing out a private corporation (Ogden Martin)."

She accused the board of "steam rolling" ahead on the lease plan despite the opposition by SWAC. She said approval of the plan amendment places the liability of the outstanding bonds on the incinerator on the county's taxpayers.

Bob Carson, of Rahway, also of the Concerned Citizens, cited health risks of keeping the incinerator in operation, including dangers of miscarriages for pregnant women.

Daniel P. Sullivan, Chairman of the Freeholder board, said the current crisis involving the financial stability of the incinerator was "dumped" on the Freeholders.

He indicated that failure by the board to act quickly on the lease deal would wind up costing the taxpayers of Union County "millions of dollars."

CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

SCOTCH PLAINS POLICE BLOTTER Freeholders Approve Amended Waste Plan WEDNESDAY, MAY 20

· A tire was slashed on a vehicle parked at the Scotch Plains- Fanwood High School parking lot. The incident occurred some time during the day.

FRIDAY, MAY 22

· A resident of Orchard Drive reported vandalism to a vehicle that was parked on the street. The right side of the

vehicle was dented and scuffed.

SUNDAY, MAY 24

· A bicycle was reported stolen from a yard on Rolling Peaks.

MONDAY, MAY 25

· A 1996 GMC Jimmy was stolen from the driveway of a Coles Avenue resident. The incident took place some time during the night.

IN APPRECIATION… Congressman Bob Franks, pictured at right, presents James Peeney of Fanwood with a certificate of appreciation during the fifth annual Seventh Congressional District Volunteer of the Year Ceremony which was held recently in Plainfield. In observance of National Volunteers Week, Congressman Franks recognized more than 80 individuals and groups from throughout Central New Jersey for their hard work and dedication within the community.

Miss Rabadeau Dances In Spring Performance At Bucknell University

Lauren Rabadeau, the daughter of Evelyn and Gerard Rabadeau of Scotch Plains, recently participated in the Dance Company's spring performance at Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania.

She performed in works entitled "Susquehanna (River) Dance," "Take Flight" and "A Song for Orpheus" during the program.

Lauren, a graduate of Scotch PlainsFanwood High School, is a sophomore majoring in management at Bucknell.

A member of Delta Delta Delta sorority, she has been an active member of the Dance Company.

Warm Weather Brings Concerns For Keeping Pets in Cool Areas

The weather hasn't been very predictable lately, but one thing is for sure — summer is on its way.

Along with the warm weather should come concern for the effect the sun has on your pet. On a warm day, the temperature in a parked car can reach 120 degrees in a matter of minutes, even with the windows partially open, so you should never leave your pet unattended for any period of time, reports Nina Austenberg, Chairwoman of the Domestic Companion Aniomal Council.

High temperatures can cause your pet to suffer from brain damage or die from heatstroke or suffocation. You should be alert for the signs of heat stress: heavy panting, glazed eyes, rapid pulse, unsteadiness, a staggering gait, vomiting, or a deep red or purple tongue.

Ms. Austenberg further stated that if your pet becomes overheated you must lower his body temperature immediately, but safely, by moving him into the shade and applying cool (not cold) water all over his body. Use ice packs or cold towels, but be sure to apply them to your pet's head, neck, and chest only. This will gradually lower the body temperature.

Let your pet drink small amounts of cool water or lick ice cubes. And of course, take your pet to a veterinarian right away — it could save your pet's life.

If you see an animal in a car exhibiting any signs of heat stress, call your local animal care and control agency or police department immediately. In New Jersey, state law mandates that any animal in a person's care must be provided with proper shelter or protection from the weather. Ms. Austenberg said that violators may be subject to a sizable fine or six months in jail, or both.

Legislation Encourages Permanence in Adoption

Senate President Donald T. DiFrancesco, serving as Acting Governor, has signed legislation that will ensure permanence in adoption placement by setting stricter guidelines and requirements for the establishment of parentage and the filing of objections by unmarried parents.

"The bond formed between adoptive parents and adopted children should not be shattered by the sudden appearance of a biological parent — sometimes several years after an adoption occurs," Senator DiFrancesco said.

"This legislation ensures that the courts make the child's best interests the top priority when making a decision regarding an adoption," he continued.

Bill S- 56, sponsored by Senator Walter Kavanaugh and Assembly members Kip Bateman and Peter

Biondi, representing Morris and Somerset Counties, requires certain unmarried parents to acknowledge paternity within 120 days of a child's birth or prior to the date of the preliminary adoption hearing, to be entitled to receive notice of adoption.

Upon receiving notice, a parent wishing to object to the adoption must file a written objection within 20 days in the case of a resident, or 35 days in the case of a non- resident.

Additionally, the bill establishes the "best interest of the child" as the standard for resolving contested adoption cases, according to a statement issued by the Senate Majority Office.

Senate President DiFrancesco is serving as Acting Governor while Governor Christine Todd Whitman attends the Bilderberg Conference, an international forum on political and economic concerns, in Ayrshire, Scotland.

MOONBOUNCING… Students from School One Elementary in Scotch Plains enjoyed playing on the "moonbounce" at the school's recent Daisy Fair. Sunny skies and warm temperatures made this year's fair especially enjoyable. The popular annual event featured games, crafts, a bake sale, and a "white elephant" sale.

Here's Where to Buy

The Times

WALT'S MOUNTAIN DELI 2385 Mountain Avenue, Scotch Plains

QUICK CHEK FOOD & PHARMACY 1928 Westfield Avenue, Scotch Plains

WALLIS STATIONERY 441 Park Avenue, Scotch Plains

QUICK STOP 1819 East Second Street, Scotch Plains

SEVEN ELEVEN Park & Mountain Avenues, Scotch Plains

FANWOOD CORNER STORE 34 Martine Avenue, Fanwood

FANWOOD TRAIN STATION North Avenue, Fanwood

QUICK CHEK 572 North Avenue, Fanwood

SHOPPERS EXPRESS 190 South Avenue, Fanwood

SEVEN ELEVEN 1200 South Avenue West, Westfield

J & M CAFE 251 North Avenue, Westfield

Nancy Newcomb Earns Master of Arts Degree

Nancy J. Newcomb, the daughter of Jeanne Newcomb of Scotch Plains and the late James Newcomb, graduated from New York University and recently received her Master of Arts Degree in Food Management from New York University.

A 1972 graduate of Scotch PlainsFanwood High School, she is currently the Director of Food and Nutrition at Bellevue Hospital in New York City.

Park Seventh Graders Host Pre- K Class from St. Bart's Seventh- grade students in Peggy Brown's English class at Park Middle School in Scotch Plains recently invited Mary Schoendorf's Pre- Kindergarten class from St. Bartholomew the Apostle School to join them in a "Celebration of Reading."

This joint venture celebrated the themes "Read Across America" and "Middle School Education Month."

The seventh graders from Park School do a service learning project with St. Bartholomew's Pre- Kinder

GUIDING HAND… Kelly McVey, a seventh- grade student at Park Middle School in Scotch Plains, assists Sydney Handsman, a preschooler at St. Bartholomew the Apostle School in Scotch Plains, as she attempts to feed "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" during a "Celebration of Reading" activity organized by Park students for pre- Kindergarten students at St. Bartholomew School.

garten, for which they designed, constructed and implemented a variety of reading activities for their young audience.

The lessons centered around caterpillars and butterflies. Activities included story reading, a puppet show, song and fingerplay, while teaching the youngsters about metamorphosis and nutrition. All of the participants enjoyed crafts and snacks at the finale of the program.

Congressman Proposes Tax Credit to 'Full- Time' Parents

Saying that the federal tax laws discriminate against parents who choose to stay home to raise their children, Congressman Bob Franks has proposed a child care tax credit to "reward the value of full- time parental care."

At a press conference at the Mulberry Bush Preschool in Bridgewater, Congressman Franks was joined by Faith Fuhrman, North East Coordinator of Moms Club; Liz Tait, Concerned Women for America of New Jersey; and Len Dio, New Jersey Family Policy Council.

Mr. Franks said, "The tax code effectively discriminates against parents who choose to devote their full- time attention to raising their children. Federal tax policy should help these families, not hurt them, and encourage the kind of care that only parents can give their children."

He explained that, currently, only families where both parents are working are eligible for Dependent Care Tax Credit to help cover child care expenses.

Mr. Franks is sponsoring legislation that would expand the Dependent Care Tax credit to families where a parent stays home to care for a child.

"This bill is a first step in restoring the value that stay- at- home mothers have always deserved," said Ms. Tait.

Congress Franks said the expansion of the tax credit would not only recognize the financial sacrifices parents make to stay home with their kids, it would also provide a financial incentive "to help other families who desperately want to spend more time with their children."

Under his proposal, a one wageearner family with an annual income of

$50,000 would be eligible for a tax credit of $960. A family with two children and an annual income from only one parent of $70,000 would receive a tax credit of $1,440.

Congressman Franks said that as member of the House Budget Committee he will fight to get the expanded tax credit passed this year, noting that there is growing support in Congress to provide additional tax relief to help families meet the high cost of raising young children.

"Most parents want more time with their kids and more money to make ends meet," Congressman Franks said. "We need to provide American families with a tax credit that gives them what they want: more money to spend on their kids and more time together."

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