Residents Press East Brunswick Town Council to Pass Differing Resolutions on Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

During the December 26, 2023 meeting, the East Brunswick Town Council tackled an array of issues, ranging from impassioned pleas regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to local developments such as the construction of a new ice rink and cricket field, and the implementation of a new garbage contract.

The public portion of the recent East Brunswick Town Council meeting brought international issues to the local forefront as residents voiced divergent perspectives on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Dr. Atika Ganja, a resident with personal ties to East Brunswick, called for the Council to support a resolution for an immediate permanent ceasefire in Gaza, citing a U.S. Congressional proposal and American support for peace. Dan Rosette from the Jewish Federation disputed the use of “genocide” to describe the situation and mentioned a ceasefire that was disrupted by Hamas.

Dr. Khaled Zayed, a Palestinian American, advocated for a ceasefire and humanitarian aid, while Art Kagel proposed a resolution supporting Israel’s right to defend itself, denouncing Hamas’s actions as terrorism. Anton Kabaz, also a Palestinian American, highlighted the suffering of Palestinians and the role of U.S. support for Israel.

The Council’s agenda also included local development plans. A public hearing was conducted to discuss the pre-qualifications for potential bidders on the construction of a new municipal ice skating rink. The Council President underlined the importance of selecting a contractor experienced in indoor ice rink projects, aligning with New Jersey’s stringent public bidding rules. Following the public input, Resolution 353 was set to be adopted, with pre-qualified contractors being allowed to bid on the ice rink project pending approval from the Department of Community Affairs.

Mayor Brad J. Cohen paid tribute to Holly Howard, a valued member of the board of education who had passed away, and recognized the retirement of Township Attorney Michael Baker after decades of service. The Mayor and Business Administrator Mr. Cula extended their New Year wishes and gratitude for Baker’s contributions to the town.

The construction of the Township’s first official Cricket field was another focal point of the meeting. The awarded bid initiated the building process at Heavenly Farms, setting aside lighting installation for future consideration. Mayor Cohen assured that the field would eventually be lit as initially planned, with the pursuit of lighting slated for the following year. Furthermore, Resolution 360 concerning the purchase of solid waste and recycling containers was discussed. The Mayor clarified that this $1.7 million investment would provide residents with bins bearing the town’s insignia and detailed disposal instructions, with deliveries expected by the end of March.

Lastly, the Council addressed the new garbage contract set to commence on January 2nd, featuring a twice-weekly pick-up schedule. Residents were to be informed of the service changes through a forthcoming letter detailing the new schedule.

Note: This meeting summary was generated by AI, which can occasionally misspell names, misattribute actions, and state inaccuracies. This summary is intended to be a starting point and you should review the meeting record linked above before acting on anything you read. If we got something wrong, let us know. We’re working every day to improve our process in pursuit of universal local government transparency.

Mayor:
Brad J. Cohen
City Council Officials:
Kevin McEvoy, Dana Zimbicki, Dana Winston, Dinesh Behal, James Wendell

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