SOUTH AMBOY – South Amboy’s council held their first public meeting on January 18th, and a good number of residents came down to discuss the problems with the town’s street signs and lights.
Tom Kross brought up the visual streetlights around town, including two roads on Main Street up Washington Road and Raritan Street. Kross explained that he called Jersey Central, the town’s lighting supplier, but was not given any answers.
“I called Jersey Central to complain about the lights being out, but they told me they have 10 million customers and they can’t check every light,” Kross said. “Residents shouldn’t be responsible to get this fixed, and if we are paying for a service there should be something done about it.”
Business Administrator Camille Tooker went over the process of checking the streetlights, including a survey done by the police department. She said that despite the large number of lights being out, the city is working on getting them fixed.
“The police department and I completed a survey of every light that wasn’t working and set it to Jersey Central via email. The total was about 57 or so lights that were either not working or malfunctioning,” Tooker said. “We also met with a representative in the area and voiced our concerns. We are working to get it done quickly.”
However, residents like Vince Mackiel of Augusta Street believe the town council should be doing more to get companies like Jersey Central up to speed. Mackiel believes that the town should be talking to Assemblymen Craig Coughlin and other government officials to get certain projects moving.
“Why aren’t we talking to our Assemblyman and doing something about these projects or companies not getting things done,” Mackiel said. “We should be asking questions like ‘what can we do to get Jersey Central up to speed.’ We need to get things done.”
Mayor Henry tried to explain to Mackiel that things are happening as fast as they can, and that most projects are on schedule to be completed. Henry used the roof on City Hall as an example.
“We are doing things to help the city, it just depends on the weather conditions and what the companies we deal with can do,” Henry said. “January and February aren’t the best months to do a roof, but things are moving along as best they can.”
Henry also addressed a recent article in the Guardian questioning a new nursing facility being built in town. He confirmed that the town has begun constructing a new nursing building, and a press release should be coming in a few days.
“We have already started working on the property, and our goal of eliminating the eyesore that is currently at the location has begun,” Henry said in his opening comments. “There will be a new Venetian nursing care building put in the area and we look forward to this and other future successes in town.”
Other street concerns came from Bob Pavlik of Augusta Street, who told the council of a mysterious “no left turn” sign that was placed between Augusta and Feltus Street. He explained that he has lived there since 1965, and the sign randomly popped up as early as a month ago.
“There has never been a sign faced that way, so I’d like to know what ordinance was passed to allow that sign to be posted,” Pavlik said. “Can I make a left there or should I go up a street to Thompson and make a more hazardous turn?”
Pavlik then supplied the council with a photo of the sign, and both Council President Joseph Connors and Business Administrator Tooker said they would look into it. Connors urged Pavlik to find an alternate route until it was resolved, which would take no longer then 2-3 days.
“If no ordinance was passed for this sign, then it has to be taken down,” Connors said. “It should take 2-3 days to be resolved, but if there is no ordinance then we will have public works go down there and remove it as soon as possible.”
The next council meeting will be held on February 1st at 7:00 PM.
By Joseph L. Kuchie