Parking Quarrel, Mail Fire, Flood Buyouts Top This Week's news
Here's a look at the past week in Westwood, Washington Township and Hillsdale.
Residents of Cottage Place in Westwood said they are fed up with parents using their street to drop off and pick up students from Brookside Elementary School, and they are asking the borough to do something about the problem.
Parents who park on the street have to make U-turns either down at the dead end — which is not a cul-de-sac — or in residents' driveways. Residents said they were both annoyed at the inconvenience of having many people parked on their street twice a day, and also concerned about safety with all the traffic.
The state Department of Treasury is working to assist residents in many Bergen County towns whose mail, sent to government offices between Sept. 7 and Sept. 10, burned in a truck fire last month, according to NorthJersey.com.
Affected zip codes begin with 070 to 076, 078, 079, 088 and 089.
Hundreds of man-hours have been spent on a project to purchase flood-prone homes in Westwood, but continual changes from state officials have caused numerous delays in the process, borough officials said Tuesday.
"This has been a frustrating and burdensome process," Mayor John Birkner said.
According to Birkner, borough staff have spent almost 400 man-hours on the project so far, and it may take 500 more before the buyouts are closed. The borough still has several tasks it must undergo to get state approval for the buyouts, including environmental investigations, title searches and surveys for each property, according to borough attorney Russell Huntington.
A developer planning to build a pair of strip malls at the site of the former Chevrolet dealership on Kinderkamack Road in Westwood has agreed to hold off a pending lawsuit against the borough.
The Westwood Zoning Board denied a plan from the same developer, Kmack North Associates, for 39 Kinderkamack Road in May, citing concern over a requested variance for "general retail use" at the site. The developer then filed an appeal and a second application for the same site.
David Rutherford, the board's attorney, said at a previous meeting that he believed the board did not have jurisdiction to hear the second application while the first was still pending in court.
David Lafferty, the developer's attorney, said Monday that they would remand the appeal back to the board, which would allow them to continue with the second application.
An 84-year-old man from Hillsdale is facing DWI charges for allegedly tossing a few back before he lost control of his vehicle on Van Emburgh Avenue and slammed into a utility pole.
The Hillsdale Police Department recently hired Ryan Norton as its newest officer, according to Police Chief Chip Stalter. Norton starts Monday.
Norton, a graduate of William Paterson University, comes to Hillsdale from Montclair State University's campus police force, and was previously a Passaic County Sheriff's investigator.
Westwood officials discussed the possibility of hiring a cell phone tower expert to help manage the borough's two towers and deal with applications to build new towers on private property during a council meeting this week.