Springfield Newsletter (July 2016)

For a current listing of Springfield events, you can always visit my up-to-date Calendar at http://calendar.shehady.us

– The Springfield Senior Citizens Calendar for July 2016 is online at http://zszs.us/SNJSrCz. Please share with family, friends and neighbors.

– The Springfield Community Pool Activities Calendar for July 2016 is online at http://zszs.us/29wyoyO.

– The Springfield Farmers Market begins this Monday, July 11th and is open for business every Monday through October 31st from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Municipal Parking Lot located at the corner of Church Mall and Morris Avenue. Check out the poster at http://zszs.us/29twFbR

– This month, the Springfield Business Improvement District kicks off their Springfield Music Fest, a 5 Live Outdoor Concert series featuring area bands. Next Thursday, July 14th, stop by Patriot Park (corner of Mountain Avenue and Wabeno Avenue) for a performance by “The Mighty Movers” from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (This was originally scheduled for yesterday, July 7th but was postponed until next Thursday due to inclement weather.) The full schedule is listed on my community calendar. View the poster at http://zszs.us/29wAxuj

– The Springfield First Aid Squad is holding a Car Wash Fundraiser this Saturday, July 9th from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Squadhouse (10 North Trivett Avenue). Cars are $10 and vans/SUVs are $15. Your tax-deductible donation will help support our First Aid Squad in providing a valuable service to the community.

– Save the Date! National Night Out, “America’s night out against crime”, will be celebrated in Union County here in Springfield at Meisel Park on Tuesday, August 2nd from 6 to 8 p.m. It’s part of Union County’s “Family Fun & Flix” series so they will be showing the movie “Zootopia” as well. The movie starts at sunset. In the past, there has been food, refreshments, activities for kids, and emergency vehicles and public safety personnel from around the County. Bring a blanket and chairs!


– Many residents have been asking me about the power outages they feel have been frequent lately. Our Area Manager at Jersey Central Power and Light has been very helpful in providing the Township with information about outages as soon as possible and keeping us apprised of restoration efforts. Additionally, JCP&L has been more responsive and more proactive than in years past when it comes to making repairs and improving infrastructure proactively in Springfield to prevent unnecessary outages. Unfortunately, not every outage can be prevented due to circumstances outside of their control. I asked our Area Manager to provide details of their outage records for the last 2 months which I’ve made available for public review at http://zszs.us/29KYcp0. In the last 2 months, there have been 16 incidents resulting in 20 circuit outages. Of the 16, 5 were due to animal contact, 4 were due to trees, 1 was due to a car accident, 1 was due to severe weather/thunderstorms, and 5 were due to equipment/line failures.

– In the last two weeks, there have been 4 home burglaries (not home invasions) while the homes were unoccupied. These occurred in the areas of Milltown Road, Evergreen Avenue, Briar Hills Circle, and Henshaw Avenue. In all cases the suspect(s) entered into the rear yard and either defeated the lock of, and/or forced open, a rear door. These have been during the work week and sometime in the early afternoon hours. Our police department has been working on these burglaries and following up on all leads. They are also working together with other local jurisdictions that have had the same, or similar, burglaries. Springfield is not the only community that this has been happening in. The actors in these types of burglaries will typically ring or knock at the front door and if there is no answer, go around to the rear yard and look for a way in. Residents are asked to keep an eye for any suspicious persons and/or activity that seem out of place in their neighborhoods. Please pay particular attention to the following: anyone walking around that you do not recognize from your neighborhood, anyone walking behind, or out from behind, a home, anyone walking through rear yards, and anything that you feel at all suspicious of. If you see any such persons or have any suspicion about anything whatsoever that you may see, contact the police immediately and we will investigate. If you have any doubt whatsoever, contact the police and they will look into it immediately. Our best defense for these types of crimes is to work together. Remember to lock all doors and windows when leaving. Also, if there is glass in, or anywhere near, an entry door, use a double cylinder deadbolt and do not leave the key in the interior side, but leave it nearby where family members know to find it should they need to exit in an emergency.

Residents have expressed some concern to me so I reached out to Ring.com (makers of a wi-fi doorbell) and explained what was going on. They helped me sign up Springfield for their “Neighborhoods Program”. As part of this arrangement, they’ve agreed to offer Springfield residents a $25 discount with the use of the promo code 3z4snj I’ve used a Ring.com doorbell for a long time and I highly recommend it! What does it do? Someone walks near the doorbell and it begins to record. The visitor rings the doorbell and the whole interaction is also recorded. When the doorbell rings, your cell phone also rings and you can see the live video feed and speak/listen to the visitor (like a video intercom). This offers some additional security and deterrence because the visitor will not actually know if you’re home or not and you will have video footage in the event of a crime. It’s easy to install and if it’s stolen, they’ll replace it for free. Aside from the up-front cost, there are no other fees unless you want video storage. To buy, go to www.ring.com and use the promo code 3z4snj at check out. The video at the following link is an example from when a solicitor came to my door just recently – https://ring.com/share/429014985

I report on all important public safety matters with timely updates on Facebook. If you would like to stay informed as things are occurring, subscribe to my official Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/ziadandrewshehady


– The next Township Committee meeting will be on Monday, July 18th at 7 p.m. in Town Hall. This is the only meeting for July and it will also be preceded by an Annual Joint Meeting with the Board of Education which starts at 6 p.m. in Town Hall. The agenda is not yet available but will be posted by Friday, July 15th at http://agenda.springfieldnj.us

At our meeting, I will be proposing the Township Committee approve a plan to provide free shuttle bus service to residents for the PGA championship. Since the PGA is not offering public parking in town (residents have to drive to Clark to park and catch the official PGA shuttles back to Springfield), I asked our town officials to investigate a pickup/dropoff route with a handful of stops around town so residents can leave their cars at home, walk to a nearby location and get picked up by a shuttle. At this point, it is just an idea and I am still exploring the feasibility but I hope we can make this possible. If successful, there would be no more than 5 stops with a limited schedule because we would be utilizing our buses that are needed for the town Jitney service and for senior citizens. Let me know what you think of this idea.

– I will be hosting a Forum in early August with Union County Prosecutor Grace Park on the topic “Drugs in our Community”. Details will be announced on Facebook and by e-mail when they are confirmed.

– The bridge on Mountain Avenue is scheduled for construction by Union County in order to replace the culvert. The road may be completely closed from August 1, 2016 until September 9, 2016. It should partially reopen while the project continues until the end of September. However, it is not certain anymore when it will start because $1 million in grant funding from the State is now being withheld as part of Governor Christie’s shutdown order over the Transportation Trust Fund issues. I will provide updates as they are available.


– Please remember this name – Victoria Sarracino. Vicki is running for Township Committee and will be asking for your vote on Tuesday, November 8th. She has the support of 4 members of the Township Committee and we would love for her to join the Township Committee in 2017 so we can work together for the continued improvement of our town. She’s knocking on doors around town and would love to meet you. You can contact her at vicki@springfieldnj.us

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