Wednesday, November 30, 2011


This notice just sent out from the South Orange Maplewood Board of Education:

Special Board of Education Meeting

The Board of Education will hold a special meeting 
regarding results of middle school restructuring as related to future academic placement recommendations. The public is invited to be part of the discussion on Monday, December 5, 2011 at 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at South Orange Middle School Little Theater. The meeting was originally planned for December 7, but was changed due to a scheduling conflict. Click here for flyer.  


Looks like the new 7-11 at Springfield ave. and Tuscan is ready to open soon with its sign now posted.

Meanwhile, owners of Village Burger, slated for Maplewood Village, expect it to open its doors within a week or less.


PATCH reports the Planning Board will keep discussing the housing proposed for the old police station:

Due to the lateness of the hour on Tuesday evening Nov. 29, the Maplewood Planning Board decided to carry the review of the site plan for development of 125 Dunnell Road to its regularly scheduled meeting on December 13.
Representatives of JG Petrucci Co. had presented detailed plans for development of the .86 acre site as a 50-unit, four-story multi-family housing development and answered many of the sixteen concernsenumerated by Planning Board Engineering Consultant Bob Bratt in a memo dated Nov. 8. Petrucci was also withdrawing its request for a variance on the required 25-foot frontyard setback (Petrucci had wanted a 21-foot setback).

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Maplewood police issued today:

November 25, 2011: Theft. On 11/25/11, a Manley Terrace resident reported the theft of a package that had been placed at the entrance of the building for a postal worker to pick up. The theft reportedly occurred between 2:00 and 2:30 pm.

November 28, 2011: Burglary (Arrests). On Monday, 11/28/11, officers responded to an Oberlin Street residence on a report of a suspicious condition called in by an alert citizen. The citizen had noticed an unknown male enter a home that he did not reside in, and had also noted a related vehicle parked out front.

Arriving on the scene, officers observed a male matching the description supplied by the witness exit the residence through a rear window, jump down to a rear deck and flee from officers through neighboring yards. After a foot chase and a search of the area, Officers C. Baez, H. Wasielewski, and R. Tannenbaum located and apprehended the suspect hiding in a detached garage, in possession of stolen jewelry.  The suspect, Thelonious Martin, 40, of 470 21st Street, Irvington, was arrested and charged with Burglary, Theft, Trespassing, and Resisting Arrest.

Simultaneously, Detective L. Washington, Officer P. Kuenzel, and Sgt. J. Cummis spotted a maroon Nissan Quest, as described by the caller, traveling east on Springfield Ave. near Burnett Ave. Through a field investigation, officers determined that the vehicle had been involved in the burglary on Oberlin Street. The operator, LaQuan Moore, 39, of 406 Lincoln St. Linden, NJ, was arrested and charged with Burglary, Theft, Possession of Burglary Tools, and Resisting Arrest.

Nov. 28, 2011: Robbery. On 11/28/11, at approximately 7:23 pm, a Kensington Terrace resident reported that he was the victim of an armed robbery with a handgun. The victim reported that while walking home from the train station, he noticed a small four door, dark colored vehicle (possibly a mini-van) parked near the intersection of Edgewood Place and Kensington Terrace. As he continued to walk down the street, he noticed three unknown males exit the vehicle and proceed to walk towards him. As the victim walked up the steps to his residence, two of the males turned him around, and one produced a small black handgun. The victim turned over $60.00 in cash, a credit card and other documents. The suspects then entered the small dark vehicle and sped off north on Valley Street.

The suspects are described as follows:

Suspect #1: Stocky black male, possibly in his late 20’s, bald head, clean shaven, approximately 6 foot tall.

Suspect #2: Thin black male, light facial hair, shoulder length dread-lock hairstyle, late teens- early 20’s, approximately 5’10 inches tall.

Suspect #3: Black male with braided hairstyle.


The holiday issue is out and great to read via the online virtual page-turning feature.


Monday, November 28, 2011


Tuesday night review of housing planned for former police station on Dunnell Rd.

Agenda HERE.


Police apparently caught two burglars in the act breaking into a home on Yale Street and one on Oberlin, both near Tuscan Road.

One cop on the scene said two older black men were reported by neighbors trying to burglarized both homes, but were taken into custody.


A Christmas Blizzard
with author Garrison Keillor
NOV 28 / MON / 7:30 pm
Host of “A Prairie Home Companion” NPR radio show, Keillor presents his short comic novel about a Hawaii-bound holiday traveler who ends up stranded in his hometown during a blizzard.

At Words in Maplewood Village

Thursday, November 24, 2011


In today's Star-Ledger, learn about Jane Coffee:

Jane Coffee is sad but accepting. She and her husband John will again be celebrating Thanksgiving today without their only child, Megan. "At least, we can be grateful she has her foundation running — that was a concern for us," says Jane, who lives in Maplewood.
Megan, a Harvard-trained physician who also holds a doctorate from Oxford in public health, has spent the last two years working for free for tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS patients in Haiti. She arrived in Port-au-Prince shortly after the earthquake in January, 2010, She set up the foundation—TiKay Haiti—to buy medical supplies.
I couldn’t get through to Megan in Haiti. Just wanted to wish her a happy holiday. As I waited for the call to connect, it occurred to me that knowing Megan — she was a Star-Ledger Scholar years ago — is a reason to be grateful this Thanksgiving.
All of us can be grateful to have her in our midst.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


News-Record reports Maplewood Recreation director George Rague is being dismissed:

Maplewood decided to fire its recreation director, George Rague [right in photo], effective at the end of the year, officials said Nov. 22.
Deputy Mayor Fred R. Profeta  Jr. said Rague, the director for the past four years, was given notice a couple of weeks ago.
He said the decision was made by township Administrator Joseph F. Manning, who could not be reached for comment.
Profeta said the decision had nothing to do with potentially outsourcing recreation services to South Orange. He declined to elaborate further.
 "I am not going to comment on personnel issues,” Mayor Vic De Luca said in a phone interview.


....Scanner reports car fire at Sovereign Bank, no further details.....

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


Superintendent of Schools Brian Osborne opened Monday's school board meeting with this statement about last week's controversial T-shirt incident


Last Wednesday evening, the Columbia High School Student Council hosted its annual volleyball fundraiser. 
For the event, students self-organized in to teams with various team names and signed up to play for fun.  This year, one of the teams set out to parody southern culture, calling itself “The South.”
In a misguided attempt at satire, students on this team wore makeshift team shirts that included the word “Dixie” and the number “1861.” 
Staff advisors to the event intervened and had the students turn their shirts inside out at the event, which they did.
Although the intent may have been to elicit humor, by mocking a stereotype of the south, the offensive references to such a deeply troubling period of American history, demonstrated poor judgment and a lack of sensitivity. 
They are out of step with the community values and the vision of the South Orange-Maplewood School District. 
The students voluntarily delivered an apology to the school community this morning, which Dr. Lilly read on their behalf on the school’s television network. 
They acknowledged their poor judgment and the lessons that they have learned.  They have taken responsibility for their actions and they face consequences in accordance with the code of conduct.
In addition, the investigation into the organization and supervision of the event, including other team names is ongoing. 
One of our district’s core beliefs is that quality education demands genuine appreciation of difference.
It is my expectation as Superintendent that this experience be treated as a teachable moment and used to raise awareness of our history and common values of appreciation and respect for all.
Thank you.

Monday, November 21, 2011


This just issued from Maplewood Police:

Maplewood Police Department

Press Release

November 21, 2011

November 15, 2011: Robbery. On 11/15/11 at approximately 3:42 pm, a sixteen year old male reported that an unknown male assaulted him and took his cell phone. The victim reported that while walking west on Parker Ave. near Lancaster Ave., he was approached by 5 or 6 males. One of the suspects, described as a black male, 16-17 years old, 5’8 tall, thin build and wearing a light blue windbreaker and blue jeans, asked him if he had a cell phone before punching him in the face. The other 5 males then began punching and kicking him before one of the males reached into his pocket and removed his Droid 3 cell phone. The victim refused medical attention.

November 15, 2011: Robbery (Arrest). On 11/15/11 at approximately 7:15 pm, two juvenile Township residents reported that they were robbed near the intersections of Boyden Ave. and Hughes St. They reported that they were approached by two suspects, and one stated “Don’t run, I’m strapped”. The suspects proceeded to take an Apple laptop computer from one of the victims before fleeing down Hughes St. towards Seth Boyden School. Responding to the call, Maplewood Police Officer Michael Bertone observed a suspect matching the broadcast suspect description on Boyden Ave., however the suspect began to flee on foot. After a foot chase, Officer Bertone apprehended the suspect in the rear of Seth Boyden School. The suspect was identified as Eli Joseph, 18, of 738 Stuyvesant Ave., Irvington, NJ. He was positively identified by the victims, and arrested and transported to police headquarters for processing.

November 16, 2011: Burglary. On 11/16/11 at approximately 7:13 pm, a Summit Ave. resident reported that her home had been burglarized between 7:00 am and 7:00 pm. The suspect(s) apparently gained entry by breaking out a small window pane on the back door and removed jewelry from the residence.

November 20, 2011: Theft from Auto. On 11/20/11, an Elmwood Ave. resident reported that unknown suspect(s) had entered an unlocked vehicle overnight and removed a wallet containing credit cards and other documents from within. Several of the documents were recovered nearby.

November 20, 2011: Theft from Auto. On 11/20/11, a Baldwin Rd. resident reported that unknown suspect(s) had entered an unlocked vehicle overnight and removed a GPS unit from within.


I caught up with three of the Township Committee members Saturday to ask about who may be mayor in 2012. Off a successful re-election campaign, Mayor Vic De Luca declined to comment on whether he would seek to be mayor for a fourth straight year, but offered his view on the 2012 Maplewood situation.

TC Member Marlon Brownlee also declined, but said he believed the mayor was entitled to another term, but did not rule out someone else either.

Then there is former Mayor Jerry Ryan, who said no final decisions were made and he would be happy to take the post again.

Under township rules, the five-member committee annually chooses a mayor from among themselves for each year. Stay tuned

Sunday, November 20, 2011


Township notice this week:

We believe everyone deserves a meal cooked with love. This will also provide a wonderful opportunity for generous volunteers and donors from all over the town of Maplewood to come together. These volunteers have all worked long and hard to make this a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. Volunteers are needed to help with the preparations for this meal, Food is also needed to help please call the office at             973.801.9133       
Date & Time:
November 24, 2011 at 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM 
Location: Maplewood First Aid Squad 129 Boyden Ave, Maplewood NJ 
Phone:             973-801-9133      

Saturday, November 19, 2011


A new uproar brewing at Columbia High School, where some students reportedly wore "pro-slavery" T-shirts.

PATCH reports this statement from district officials:

“While we recognize a limited right of student free speech in a public school setting, communication that is demeaning or derogatory is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.
This matter is the subject of ongoing investigation. We are not able to discuss the details pertaining to any particular student. The district’s Code of Conduct provides a spectrum of consequences and interventions based on the history of the student and the severity of behavior.
CHS will continue to implement programs and services to assure that an environment respectful of all and conducive to learning continues.”
Read more from PATCH HERE.


Township Committee members -- at least some of them -- managed to participate in three ribbon-cuttings Saturday for three new businesses on Springfield Ave.

Walgreen's, Blue Life Karate and Edo's Bakery offered official openings that TC members took part in.

First, the Walgreen's opening Saturday morning, with free popcorn, cotton candy, face painting and even a goodie bag for ladies:

Then later in the evening, Edo's gave Mayor De Luca a chance to cut the red ribbon and lead a toast:


The store opened Friday at Springfield and Burnet, but the official celebration is today at 11 a.m. 

Rumors of attention-seeking politicians in attendance.

Thursday, November 17, 2011


According to Marketwatch story:

In Essex County the network was enhanced in sections of Belleville, Bloomfield, Cedar Grove, East Orange, Orange, South Orange, West Orange, Irvington, Maplewood, Millburn, Montclair, Newark, Nutley and along Routes 78, and 280, the Garden State Parkway and South Orange Avenue.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


Patch reports the TC had to okay an emergency funding and more may come:

Last night, the Maplewood Township Committee approved an emergency contract for $110,000 for hauling away trees and branches from the Oct. 29 snowstorm, but the costs are even greater, said Mayor Vic DeLuca, with no sign of emergency aid on the horizon.
DeLuca reported at the Monday, Nov. 14 meeting that a first sweep of the town to clear storm debris had been made in every area except Washington Park, half of Hickory Drive and the area above Wyoming Avenue. DeLuca said that debris in those areas would be cleared by Tuesday evening, Nov. 15. He said that the town would begin leaf removal starting in the Hilton neighborhood by Thursday, Nov. 17 and then review the leaf pickup schedule and adjust it as necessary.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


This released from Maplewood PD today:

Maplewood Police Department

Press Release

November 15, 2011

Nov. 8, 2011: Bicycle Theft- A Surley Cross Check 24 speed bicycle was taken from the front porch of a house on Plymouth Ave just after midnight.  The bicycle waa left on the porch unlocked when it was stolen.

Nov. 12, 2011: Robbery- A 22 year old Irvington man was assaulted and robbed at the intersection of Coolidge Rd and Garfield Pl. at approximately 9:15 pm on Saturday night.  The victim reported to Police that he was walking south on Coolidge Rd near Garfield Pl and texting on his phone when two black males approached him from behind and knocked him to the ground. One of the black males began to wrestle with him in an effort to take his phone as the second actor was kicking him in the torso area. The victim was able to get up and run away with his cell phone but left his Jansport back pack behind which contained some personal papers and a book. It is believed that the two actors took the back pack as they fled on foot.  The victim could only describe the actors as black males with thin builds. One was wearing a black puffy jacket and the second was wearing dark colored clothing.  The victim reported minor injuries that did not require medical attention.

Nov. 14, 2011: Theft- A resident from Field Rd reported to police that someone removed a brown terra cotta flower pot from his front porch.  The item was taken sometime between 11:45 pm on the 13th and 3:00 pm on the 14th of November.

Monday, November 14, 2011


Check out what happened at tonight's Township Committee meeting via the township Twitter:

 Maplewood Township 
Township Committee meeting is adjourned. Perhaps a new speed record!!! Committee meets next on December 6.
 Maplewood Township 
Planning Board meets Nov 29 to review plans for the 125 Dunnell Rd project.
 Maplewood Township 
Further discussion on proposed trash program changes... continued investigation to see what vendors can provide and what costs might be
 Maplewood Township 
Ordinance amending regulations on "open house" real estate signs passes unanimously.
 Maplewood Township 
Maplewood Township Committee meets this evening, Monday Nov 12, at 7:30PM in town hall.