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Residents Air Their Grievances 12/8 & 12/10/14 Council Meetings

PERTH AMBOY – At the 12/8/14 Caucus Meeting there was a presentation given by the Rutgers  Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy. This presentation was for proposed plans for the Second Street Park located alongside the Perth Amboy Train Tracks.

A handout was available to those in attendance which showed a concept design.

councilThose who made the presentation said that workshops were held at community centers and schools to get input from the residents and students. When the concept of the park was designed, it was important that  all age groups would have an area that they could enjoy. The  most important aspect of the park was to make sure that it was healthy, educational, and spacious enough for recreational events. It also should be able to hold up to the environment and that there would be enough open space for future expansion.

After the presentation was made, some of the residents were not that impressed with the proposed park.

Resident Alan Silber had photos which showed that the ground that the exercise stations were on were not properly grounded.

At the same 12/8/14 Caucus Meeting, Former Library Board of Trustee Barbara Sottilaro was concerned about the library. She stated that there is a lack of certified library staff which makes it hard for them to be able to obtain grant money or State aide.

“Furthermore the library trustee meetings usually don’t have a quorum.  People still associate me with the library and come to me to ask questions about it. The renovations at the old library still will not have enough space for additional computers to service the communities needs. The library (on Jefferson Street) should be included  in the historic district.”

Former Councilman Kenneth Balut sore spot continues to be with the YMCA. He was looking through the agenda and was aghast at all the bills associated with the YMCA. He suggested that the recreation department take over the Y.

Another subject which is a thorn in his side, especially since he is a retired Police Officer is that he believes that the problem with the department starts at the top. “The bottom learns from the top.”

Balut also had concerns about the Landings Residents getting the short end of the stick. “No one goes after Kushner.”
Addressing Councilman Irizarry, Balut said, “You beat up Code Enforcement about the troubles at Harbortown, but not at the Landings.”

B.A. Jillian Barrick said, “The problem with the façade at the Landings is between the developer and the Condo Association.”

Director of Public Works Frank Dann answered one of the agenda items dealing with  the YMCA which was R-658 – Extending the contract for pool service with Aquatic Service in the amount not to exceed the sum of $35,000.

Dann said, “They have to make sure there is proper grounding in that area. They found that 5 fixtures had not had the proper grounding.

At the 12/10/14 Council Meeting, Balut continued his discussion about the Y. “Shouldn’t the Planning Board be here to answer questions about the YMCA?”

He questioned some of the former UEZ Board Members of allocating money to the YMCA and reiterated fundraisers held at the Y and the salaries of the Board Director and that the Y has a lot of money coming in from outside sources.

“The Y’s in South Amboy and Woodbridge are being run properly. I don’t want to subsidize the Y and I’m sure other taxpayers don’t want to.”

Resident Catherine Soto had spoken at a previous meeting  about Nancy Martin, the Perth Amboy Tax Collector who is also the Mayor of Helmetta. She wanted  to see if the Council looked to see if Martin’s certification as a Tax Collector was current. Soto explained at the last meeting that when she OPRA’d Martin’s certification, it was shown it expired in 2009.

City Attorney Mark Blunda said, “The business office supplied Nancy Martin’s updated license which is good up until 2014.”

Soto wasn’t satisfied and said, “Isn’t Martin as employee supposed to be in good moral standing? Is this what represents us? What’s going to happen when she gets charged for her actions in Helmetta?”

“The Helmetta Animal Shelter was recently taken over by the NJSPCA for health related issues.” (See the 12/10/14 Amboy Guardian for more information in  a related story.)

Council President Joel Pabon said, “As far as I know, she has performed her duties here (in Perth Amboy) very well. It’s not Perth Amboy being questioned here.”

“Soto replied back to Pabon, “Perth Amboy will be in trouble when they audit her (Martin).”

Resident Alan Silber defended Martin at the 12/8/14 Caucus Meeting, “She has always been helpful and is doing an excellent job in Perth Amboy.”

City Attorney Mark Blunda was not present at the 12/8/14 Caucus Meeting. There was another representative from his firm in his place.

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Perth Amboy Calendar

MON. Jan 22
• City Council, Caucus,
4:30 p.m.
City Hall, High St.

WED. Jan 24
• City Council, Regular,
7 p.m.
City Hall, High St.

THURS. Jan 25
• Historic Preservation Commission
7 p.m.
City Hall, High St.

MON. Jan 29
• Special Public Meeting, RE: Discussion of Rezoning Ordinance
6 p.m.
City Hall, High St.


Stay informed! Attend public meetings. All are welcome!

South Amboy Calendar

WED. Jan. 31
• City Council, Regular,
7 p.m.
City Hall, N. Broadway

WED. Feb. 7
• City Council, Business,
6 p.m.
City Hall, N. Broadway

Stay informed! Attend public meetings. All are welcome!