The recent Waldwick Borough Council meeting witnessed the initiation of an ambitious plan to reduce styrofoam waste alongside a flurry of lively debates over urban development, community safety, and conservation efforts.
The meeting, chaired by Mayor Giordano, announced the appointment of a new borough administrator, Stephen Neal, who will assume office on July 10th. The Mayor also recognized local resident Ashley Greco for winning the Miss New Jersey Teen 2023 title, adding a moment of local pride to the evening’s proceedings.
Arguably the most compelling development was the proposal to join neighboring Ridgewood in investing in a machine for styrofoam disposal. Despite some initial disagreement over potential costs, the council expressed a willingness to proceed, encapsulated by one member’s pragmatic observation that “either way we’re going to be spending money to haul it out of there but in this way it’s here in Ridgewood.”
Equally important was the council’s unanimous support for a summer water conservation education campaign, reflecting a strong commitment to environmental sustainability. Interim Administrator Ms. Kelly also introduced a “blanket RFP” to invite redevelopment proposals for designated areas within Waldwick, demonstrating an openness to urban development and rejuvenation.
The meeting also saw the introduction of resolutions aimed at assisting low-income individuals with housing improvements and a discussion on renewing liquor licenses and the implementation of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) at various locations.
On the topic of community safety, Saracola from the fire and police protection committee reported an uptick in DWI arrests and theft of catalytic converters, urging residents to avoid leaving valuables in their cars. The Ambulance Corps announced the acquisition of new Lucas machines, external CPR devices, expanding their service capabilities.
A key part of the meeting revolved around infrastructure development, with an annual application for the NJDOT grants to improve infrastructure on Schuler Avenue. There was a suggestion to bundle this with two other projects in a bid to reduce costs, a decision that will be made in the forthcoming months.
Community issues were not left out, with debates on amending vehicle and traffic regulations, shifting of business insurance registry deadlines, and modifying fee structures for off-duty police officers. A divisive issue concerned lending a generator and light tower to the HCA Park. Despite strong opinions, the council ultimately voted against the request.
In the interest of public safety, the council introduced Ordinance 2023-14 to implement a parking permit system in a particular neighborhood to prevent congestion and ensure access for emergency vehicles. The proposed amendment to shift the annual business insurance registration deadline was also accepted.
The meeting concluded with a reminder of the upcoming deadline for purchasing banners for veterans. As Waldwick moves forward, the council has made it clear that their eyes are firmly set on enhancing community life, safeguarding the environment, and embracing urban development.