Week in Review: Superintendent Search Nears End, Tax Hike in Oradell
It was a busy week in River Dell with Oradell finalizing its superintendent search and municipal budget, while a River Edge tree ordinance is moving forward after five years
For the past three years Oradell Public Schoolhas been operating under the direction first of interim Superintendent Dr. Maria Nuccetelli and then Dr. Jeffrey Feifer but come September will once again have a permanent leader at the top. On Wednesday night, the Board of Education introduced the final candidate - Middletown Township Thompson Middle School Principal Anne Facendo.
As surplus and revenues continue to decline in Oradell along with construction fees, the borough will face an even tougher budget year in 2013. But for now, the Mayor and Council unanimously approved the $13,508,603 budget for the remainder of 2012 on Wednesday night which calls for a $10,592,710 tax levy to be raised while facing an increasing number of delinquent taxes. A homeowner with the average assessment of $531,722 will see an annual increase of $167.27 or $13.94 per month.
A new River Edge ordinance to preserve the borough's trees and limit their removal has long awaited its introduction to begin growing its roots. On Monday night, Ordinance #1765 had its first reading after five years of rewrites and delays as Borough Attorney Sam Cereste threw his support behind the current document and that of the Shade Tree Commission. The recently introduced five-page ordinance implements a new requirement for the removeal of any trees by combining an application for removal with that of attaining a building permit.
This fall the River Dell Athletic Hall of Fame will open its arms to the 10 athletes and one coach that were recently named to the Class of 2012. This year's honorees are Basketball coach Brian Long, and student athletes Frank Capsouras '65, Jennie Sullivan '79, Denise Medea '81, Steve Eynon '87, Bill Schwanewede '88, Heather MacRae '94, Mary O'Neill '96, Deidre McCarthy '97, Ginny Capachioni '97 and Tara Madigan '97.
The staff of Newsweek found River Dell High School among the best 1000 in the country, according to the newly-released rankings. The Regional High School checked in at #710 in Newsweek's 2012 issue of America's best public high schools after spending the past two years bouncing around in the ranks. Last year the district was ranked 298 out of a field of more than 1,100 of America’s top public high schools; 2010 placed River Dell 1,246 out of more than 1,600 schools.
Over the weekend, New Bridge Landing became a celebration point for the May Queen and King during the annual Pinkster festival to welcome the return of summer. Pinkster is the Dutch name for Whitsunday or Pentecost, when a flower-crowned May Queen and King led merry-makers from door-to-door, gathering dyed eggs, butter, bread, cream, coffee, sugar, and tallow candles in baskets for a festive supper and dance.
River Edge police officers Bob Daly and Mark Abate were among the nearly 1,600 officers who recently took part in the Police Unity Tour, a fundraising bike ride to Washington D.C. Daly rode as part of a team out of the Florham Park Chapter with Paramus Police Officers, John Scully and Craig McEllen. Abate rode with a group departing from the World Trade Center memorial site in New York City. The chapter, numbered 37 after the 37 Port Authority Police officers who died on Sept. 11, 2001
Oradell's bravest have always been willing to serve their country in time of need. And at one point, you could visit Borough Hall and see the names of those people – a Roll of Honor – proudly displayed on the lawn. While the Roll of Honor was dismantled in the 1970s, Vivienne Ennis is hoping to have a new Honor Roll incorporated into the granite monument at Memorial Field. If you are interested in assisting Ennis with her goal, she can be contacted by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oradell resident Michael Massaia, 33, is garnering attention for his photography currently on display at Bergen County Camera in Westwood, by using a nearly 100-year-old technique called platinum printing. His work will be on display through June 16.