The Jersey InsiderOpen For BusinessFebruary 8, 2008
Vol. X, Issue 1. Friday, January 1, 2014
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Open for Business

February 8, 2008


Nicholas J. Veliky

Montclair State University remains arrogant in their approach to getting approval for the Quinn Road expansion. Did I say approval, well the University still contends that they can do whatever they want in the end, and it seems they are just going along with the process to placate the local community. The residents have a valid concern that traffic will increase, creating an unsafe condition on local streets. Even now it's commonplace to see student racing up streets like Woodlawn Avenue and Robin Hood Road which run from Grove to Valley Road, as they rush to get to class. The traffic is heaviest around the time classes begin in the morning and end in the evening. The University is supposed to be an asset to the community but besides hanging a few banners heralding their centennial, one is hard pressed to think of anything the University has done for Clifton lately.

And the plot thickens (as if it could get any thicker) with the question of who authorized the signing of contracts for the construction of the proposed school at 290 Brighton Road, and when was the Board of Education going to tell the public about this commitment? The real question is, why would anyone sign construction contracts for a school that did not have the variances, Department of Environmental Protection clearances and permits necessary to proceed with the project? Millions of dollars are at stake but then again these dollars come out of taxpayer pockets and the perception is that there is an unlimited supply of cash to fuel this madness. So it's business as usual as the Board of Education attempts to build a school, no wonder the board gets so defensive when we expose their shenanigans. Let's face it, 290 Brighton Road is a hotly contested industrial parcel of land that was purchased by the Board of Education prior to obtaining the proper variances and permits to build a school. This is the same 290 Brighton Road with a 50 foot truck easement and if developed into a school would fall far short of the academic campus that Clifton's students deserve. And now we are told that we are in it too deep to bail out. Maybe it's time for an independent investigation to determine who is trying to do what and for what reason. One thing for sure it's Mr. and Mrs. Average Clifton Taxpayer who ultimately foot this bill too. . . On a related topic, why is there a big to do on the part of the Board of Education when it comes to meeting DEP standards for the 290 site? The standards should not be questioned; instead higher standards should be welcomed when it comes to creating an environment for our students. The proposed school will be sandwiched between a plastics factory and a warehouse, the least the Board of Education should do is to make sure the higher standards are met.

Did you know that Clifton's local cable station now broadcasts on Channel 77 for those who use the Optimum Cable Network and Channel 40 for those residents who have opted for the Verizon system? If you remember, the lack of Clifton programming was a major point of contention when Verizon made their initial pitch for subscribers. While the broadcasts on Clifton's network have improved, there is still much to be desired. The canned programming depicting a community as a backdrop for local weather may be nice but these images and people are not Clifton. Requests by civic organizations to videotape events around the city have also fallen on deaf ears. Maybe next time CHBD.

The Clifton Police Department was recently chosen as the number one police force by a reader's poll conducted by the Record. Detective Captain Robert Rowan noted the departments "Relentless approach to tackling crime". Well we didn't need a reader's pole to let us know we had a good police department. With only 159 officers, they do a good job of responding to the needs of the community. During a recent conversation with Captain Rowan, he noted two crime alerts that residents need to be aware of. The first is a scam where a male presenting himself as being from the State Water Commission in an attempt to gain entrance to your home. Once inside the individual runs the water at a high flow telling the residents it is a pressure test while really using the sound of the flow to mask the noise as they search for valuables. Rowan's advice is not to let anyone with this approach into your home. He noted that utilities usually don't show up unless they are called. Call 911 immediately if anyone should attempt to gain entry into your home in this way. The second tip involves breaking into vehicles. Sometimes taking your GPS with you doesn't always deter a thief. The mounting brackets or the circular marks left by the suction cup mounts are reason enough for someone to gain entry to your vehicle in search of the expensive and very saleable electronic gear.

Bob Obser, the volunteer Concert Coordinator has asked the Clifton Insider announce that the ever-popular Andy Ray "Party" Band will perform a free concert on Wednesday, February 27 at 7:00 p.m. at the Clifton High School Auditorium. While no tickets are required, a donation of non-perishable food is requested. The food items will go to St. Peters Haven Food Bank. If you would like more information please call 973-772-5291.

Save the date - The North Jersey Regional Chamber of Commerce has begun planning their annual Sports Celebrity Beefsteak Spectacular. This year's event is slated for Thursday June 5th and will be held at the Three Saints Cultural Center on Outwater Lane in Garfield. This year's Dinner Chairman, John Chirico, General Manager of Liberty Lincoln Mercury located on Route 3 West in Clifton, is promising a fun filled evening with lots of interesting sports celebrities.

Coming Saturday, March 15, 2008, "Clifton Youth Sports Expo". The Clifton Board of Recreation, The Clifton Boys and Girls Club, Athletes Against Drugs, represented by Dr. David Moore and Clifton Junior Mustang Football represented by Joseph Gaccione have all teamed up to provide a sports expo for the youth of Clifton and their families. All not for profit sports organizations in the city will be invited to attend. Sports oriented businesses will be invited to display their wares for a fee. This first time event will let the public see firsthand all the sports leagues and teams available in Clifton. The event will feature sports clinics and games. Watch the Clifton Insider for details as they become available.
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