New Community Banner Program Takes Center Stage at Council Meeting

In a recent Mahwah Borough Council meeting, the initiation of a Community Banner program garnered the most attention, promising to grace the local landscape with banners designed to foster local unity and promote local businesses. The program, orchestrated with Breeze Automated Banner System is setting its sight on enhancing the township’s aesthetic appeal, facilitating community enrichment, and offering a new advertising platform for local businesses at no cost to the town.

The representatives noted that the banners, envisaged to withstand winds above 95 mph and to be maintained through funding from participating businesses, would showcase the town. These banners would witness a triannual makeover, the designs of which will be overseen by the township administrator, aiming to keep the content non-political and geared towards beautification.

To sustain the fresh look, am automated and retractable banner system, fabricated with stainless steel, has been chosen. Over half a million such installations in Europe speak volumes about the system’s efficacy, they said. The inaugural display will be along MacArthur Boulevard despite a minor disagreement over the previously agreed locations, with the majority of the council standing firm on the initial plan that promises to “improve the look” of the Boulevard. The meeting echoed the collaborative spirit, albeit with a few conflicting viewpoints on the execution of the banner program.

As conversations moved to infrastructure, a series of projects undertaken by the Land Use Department were brought to the fore, including under-budget road work projects, facilitating additional improvements with the saved funds. The well-received bid from National Water Main for a storm drain issue in Rio Vista and the ongoing exploration for a pool cover to safeguard the newly renovated Mahwah Municipal Pool were among the updates shared.

Safety concerns on routes 287 and 17 marked a significant part of the discussion, accentuated by recent accidents attributed to construction-induced lane shifting. The council’s frustration with the DOT’s slow response was palpable, spurring consideration to seek assistance from representatives Holly Schepisi and Josh Gottheimer.

On the legal front, a slew of topics from an access agreement with Rockland Electric to ongoing litigation concerning “forever chemicals” were discussed. The council showed a proclivity for ensuring the community’s best interest with a blend of urgency and humor, highlighted by a positive outlook on potential recoveries from the lawsuit. The Marriott’s failed challenge to a redevelopment designation was a green signal for the redevelopment plan to proceed.

In the environmental ambit, well 19 remained a focal point with a shut down due to “forever chemicals,” aiming for a completion by June 2024 post necessary permits from the DEP. The council also fostered a dialogue on revitalizing the K-9 program, propelled by opioid settlement funds, evoking enthusiasm and suggestions of a swearing-in ceremony for the new German Shepherd canine officer.

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