Weehawken Council approves four-year union contract; requires residency of all township employees
Weehawken Mayor Richard Turner and the Township Council approved a four-year American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local 3166 Union contract and passed a resolution requiring all township employees be residents during a council meeting Wednesday night.
The AFSCME contract – which begins retroactively on July 1, 2010 and extends through June 30, 2014 – will provide for a six percent total salary raise: zero percent from 2010, and two percent per each year thereafter. This means that crossing guards, specifically, will receive no raise for the first year and the equivalent of 50 cents per day for each four-hour work day thereafter.
The contract also stipulates that the $150 normally allotted to union members for clothing will be retracted and uniforms will be distributed instead to maintain consistency of workers’ appearance, as required by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
The residency ordinance, which was passed unanimously, requires that municipal employees live in the township, with certain exceptions made for those selected from the state-mandated civil service list or health reasons. It is not a large issue, Turner said, since nearly 95 percent of town workers live in Weehawken already. Police and firefighters are exempt from this ordinance due to a ruling made several years ago by the state Supreme Court.
“If you live in the town you work in, you have more pride in your community, you see things you may not see otherwise, you hear what the neighbors think,” Turner explained, “Especially in a small town. In many key positions, the further away a person moves the more dangerous it is, because it’s very hard for a lot of individuals to get here on time in person from very far away.”
The town also received the American flag flown on the World Trade Center in 2011 for the 10-year anniversary and a letter of commendation from Gov. Christopher Christie’s office in honor of the aid given during 9/11.
Four Hudson County high schools rank in U.S. News top 50 N.J. Best High Schools list
U.S. News recently revealed its top Best High Schools lists, and four Hudson County schools placed in New Jersey’s top 50.
Of 21,776 U.S. high schools, 82 New Jersey schools made the national list. Twenty-eight state schools were awarded gold medals, 23 received silver medals, and 31 received bronze.
According to usnews.com, Jersey City’s McNair Academic placed third in the state and 78th in the nation. North Bergen’s High Tech High placed 30th in the state and 508th in the nation, and Weehawken High School placed 44th in the state and 1,297th in the nation. West New York’s Memorial High School ranked at number 50 in the state, and 1,773rd in the nation.
The website reports that New Jersey has a total of 389 high schools, 294 school districts, 30,807 full-time teachers, and 421,215 enrolled students.
Weehawken Weekenders to hold several summer and fall trips
The Weehawken Weekenders will take a trip to the Platzl Brauhaus in Ponoma, N.Y., on Wednesday, June 20, for a day of fun, food, and entertainment. The day includes breakfast and lunch, followed by dinner at 4 p.m.
There will be music, dancing, and bingo, and there is a pool available for anyone who wishes to use it. The bus departs from the Weehawken Pathmark at 9 a.m. Tickets cost $70.
On July 18, they will see “The Real Husbands of New Jersey” at the Royal Manor in Garfield for $45.
On Aug. 12, they will visit Magnanini’s Winery in Wallkill, N.Y. for a wine tasting, dinner, and dancing for $75.
On Sept. 8, they will visit the Nordic Lodge with all you can eat Lobster and more in Charlestown, R.I. and proceed to Mohegan Sun Casino for $125.
On Oct. 3, they will attend “Octoberfest” at the Royal Manor in Garfield for $45.00.
All trips include transportation and gratuities. Call the Weekenders office at (201) 319-6059 for more information or to make a reservation.
Weehawken Library to hold free job and resume seminar
The library will host a free two-part job search and resume writing workshop on May 16 and 23 at 7 p.m. Expert Lisa Rangel will help attendees create attention-grabbing resumes, prepare for interviews and help lay out an effective job search plan over the course of the two sessions.
She will show participants which resume styles, wordings, and formats she and her corporate clients have responded to when recruiting top-notch candidates. Participants are encouraged to attend with a copy of their resumes to get concrete, constructive feedback on how to fix common resume mistakes. The second workshop will focus on interviewing skills and strategies to help prepare job applicants for effective interviews.
The event is open to Weehawken residents only; registration is required. For additional information please contact the library at (201) 863-7823.
Weehawken resident to hold free art seminar in Hoboken
Weehawken resident Gene Wisniewski will give a free lecture at Symposia Books in Hoboken entitled “What to Look for When You Look at Art” on Sunday, May 20 at 5 p.m. The event is free and open to the public, although reservations are recommended. Symposia is located at 510 Washington Street.
For more information, call Carmen Rusu at (201) 963-0909, or email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Hudson Chamber partners with United Way in benefit event May 14
The Hudson County Chamber of Commerce and the United Way of Hudson County are joining efforts to present “We Are Hudson – The Live Benefit” on Monday, May 14, at the Roxiticus Golf Club in Mendham beginning at 10 a.m. Two leaders, who have embodied the spirit of the Mary T. Norton, New Jersey’s first Congresswoman, will be honored: Joanne Bruno, vice president for Academic Affairs at New Jersey City University and Jean Quinn, vice president of Public Relations at The Provident Bank. Both honorees will be recognized for making outstanding contributions to the success of United Way programs in Hudson County. “The Chamber believes that a strong non-profit community is imperative to making the county a great place to do business,” said Maria Nieves, the Chamber’s president and CEO. “We’re pleased to join efforts with the United Way and support their mission to provide critical resources to the underserved in our community.”
The benefit event, proceeds from which will support both organizations, will include a day of golf and tennis. Registration begins at 10 a.m. and the Mary T. Norton Awards Dinner is scheduled for 6 p.m. Individual dinner tickets are available.
To register for this event, contact the chamber: firstname.lastname@example.org.
NJ Festival of Ballooning to hold statewide contest
PNC Bank and the Quick Chek N.J. Festival of Ballooning invite students in grades two through 12 to take part in the ninth annual PNC Bank American Patriot Essay Contest by writing a short essay on the topic “What the American Flag Means to Me.”
The largest summertime hot air balloon and music festival in North America will celebrate its 30th anniversary July 27 through 29 at Solberg Airport in Readington and will feature the PNC Bank American Flag balloon: the largest free-flying flag in the world.
This year’s Grand Prize winner will receive a visit to his or her school by a 75-foot-tall hot air balloon in June and a special VIP package at this year’s festival: a hot air balloon ride for two, four Blue Sky Club VIP tickets, and the opportunity to meet one of this year’s concert headliners, which have included the Jonas Brothers and Disney stars Demi Lovato and Emily Osment in the past.
Second and third place prizes will include festival admission and merchandise.
The winning student’s immediate classmates will each receive one complimentary general admission ticket to the festival and the winning student’s teacher and school principal will each receive two Blue Sky Club VIP tickets.
Every teacher in the state who submits a group of 15 essays or more on behalf of their students will receive two free general admission tickets to the festival regardless of whether one of their students submits the winning essay.
The essays should be 100 words or less. They will be judged by a panel of representatives from PNC Bank and the balloon festival. Winning essays will be selected based on creativity, poignancy and clarity with consideration given to the grade level of the contestant. Contestants are not required to be U.S. citizens.
Entries should include the student’s name, home or school address, home or school telephone number, grade, age, school name and the name of their teacher.
Entries should be sent by May 1 to Essay Judges, Quick Chek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning, 363 Rte. 46 West, Suite 200, Fairfield, N.J., 07004. Students can also enter the contest through the festival web site at www.balloonfestival.com or by emailing their essays to email@example.com.