Springfield Newsletter (Forum with Congressman, Taste of the Towns, Spring Fest, Pool, Downtown)

COMMUNITY
For a current listing of Springfield events, check out my Calendar at http://calendar.shehady.us!

–  Please join Committeeman Jerry Fernandez and me for my monthly “Town Hall Forum” tonight, Thursday, March 19th, 7:00 – 8:30 p.m., for a discussion on the issues that matter to you. Whatever your concerns or questions are, large or small, come by the Springfield Municipal Building to talk.  The special guest this evening is our Congressman, Leonard Lance.  He will provide us with an update and answer your questions.

–  The Springfield Rotary is hosting their annual “Taste of the Towns” on Monday, March 23rd, 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. at L’Affaire on Route 22.  Tickets purchased in advance are only $25.  This is sure to be a  wonderful evening with delicious food from around the area.  The money raised from this event is returned back to the community through various Rotary projects.  For more information, visit http://zszs.us/1MPEraS.

–  The Springfield Recreation Department has scheduled “Spring Fest 2015” for Saturday, March 28th, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. at the Chisholm Park (100 South Springfield Avenue).  This is a free, public event that’s fun for children of all ages.  They will have music, a bounce house, face painting, crafts, and an egg hunt.  For more information, visit http://zszs.us/1B2VAaJ.

– The Florence M. Gaudineer PTA is selling Springfield golf umbrellas for only $20.  If you are interested in ordering, contact Mary Jo Campos (973-564-7225, ashjen325@gmail.com) or Laura Delia (973-467-2226, delia1701@verizon.net)  For more information, visit http://zszs.us/1MN3ZY0

GOVERNMENT

–  The next Township Committee meeting for March is scheduled for Tuesday, March 24th at 7:30 p.m. in Town Hall.

–  At our Township Committee meetings earlier this month, we adopted a bond ordinance in the amount of $242,000 to make improvements to the municipal pool.  Committeeman Jerry Fernandez and I have been advocating for significant upgrades to the very dated pool.  Nearly half a century old, the pool requires a lot of work but it has been neglected.  We have been trying to reverse the damage by insisting on a multi-year phased improvement plan and this bond ordinance represents the first real attempt – we are happy the rest of the Township Committee has agreed with the project.  As the pool is a separate utility, these funds come from the pool’s budget rather than the general budget that affects municipal taxes.

The Township Committee also passed an ordinance on first reading that adopts a redevelopment plan for a large portion of the downtown in the Morris Avenue corridor.  While this next step is the culmination of negotiations that Committeeman Fernandez and I started back in 2012, I expressed concerns at our meeting about the high density and minimal parking proposed in the plan.  The ordinance requires a final hearing on April 14th.  I have asked for drawings/renderings to show how a 4-story building with over 100 proposed residential units might look on Morris Avenue.  The last steps involve the Planning Board and the State Department of Environmental Protection before construction can begin.   To read the plan, click here to download it.

While most resolutions were “routine”, one allowed for the purchase of a backup power system for Town Hall and another authorized a contract for the renovation of the ceiling in the Town Hall chamber.  We also received a disappointing update on the energy aggregation proposal that Mayor David Barnett has been boasting of since 2013 – many residents have asked me why they haven’t seen savings on their electric bill as he promised.  Unfortunately, the program is a flop and several years later, the program has not been able to get off the ground.  Because it has taken so long, we were informed by the company he introduced to the Township that they must resubmit their paperwork to the State Board of Public Utilities for approvals again.

EXTRA!

– The Springfield Republican Committee is looking for new members.  They will be holding their next monthly meeting on Wednesday, March 25th at 7 p.m.   If you are interested in joining or for more information, send an email to email@springfieldnjgop.com.

Help get the word out to more residents!  If you have family, friends or neighbors that you think may be interested in receiving this newsletter, please e-mail me.

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