Monday, October 31, 2016

SOME OF OUR FAVORITE MAPLEWOOD HALLOWEEN HOMES

Great work folks!




JOB HUNTING HELP AT LIBRARY TODAY

10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Hilton Branch – Network with other professionals who are currently unemployed or looking for new career opportunities. Meetings alternate between guest speakers and career workshops. Programs are free and open to the public. Subscribe to the group here.

MAPLEWOOD VILLAGE HALLOWEEN PARTY TODAY, AND STREET CLOSURES

The annual Maplewood Village Halloween party is on today from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Bring the kiddies down in costume for some store-to-store trick-or-treating, music, dancing and prizes. 

But be ready for some road closures and parking limits as well.

From Maplewood Police:

Maplewood Ave from Durand Rd to Lenox Pl will be closed on Monday 10/31/16 from 3pm to 6pm for Halloween Parade. There will be parking restrictions on Maplewood Ave during these times. 

The Maplewood Police Department is expecting heavy vehicle and pedestrian traffic. Baker St will be open only for through traffic. Anyone attending this event is strongly advised to park on the outlying perimeter streets and walk into Maplewood Center

Sunday, October 30, 2016

POWER OUTAGE AFFECTS 1,600 DUE TO WIRE DOWN

If you lost power this evening, you were not alone.

At least 1,600 customers of PSE&G lost power this evening, beginning at 6 p.m. and in the area of Prospect Street and Sommer Avenue with a wire down, according to PSE&G. It was extended to further outages at 8 p.m., which ended about 20 minutes later.

These were likely due to a temporary outage needed to re-power the initial area after the downed wire was repaired.


FREE CLASSIC MUSIC SUNDAY AT MMS

Free Concert

REAL GHOST STORIES TODAY AT DURAND-HEDDEN


CHS STUDENT LEFT BEHIND ON FIELD TRIP

A Columbia High School student who was part of a field trip to South Mountain Reservation this past week was left behind and had to reach out to a parent to be picked up, according to sources in the district.

The incident occurred on Wednesday or Thursday, according to sources.

Asked about the incident, District Spokesperson Suzanne Turner declined to provide any information, stating via email: "As you know, we cannot comment on inquiries regarding specific students or staff members."

But the district did inform school board members of the mistake in a note that indicated an administrator had to retrieve the student after the student reached out to a parent.

The field trip was also apparently never approved by the school board, with no record of it in any school board agendas dating back to the end of the 2015-2016 school year.

SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS WANT LAWSON-MUHAMMAD, DAVIS AND ADAMSON

If it were up to the Board of Education members who are not up for re-election the winners of the school board race would be incumbent Stephanie Lawson-Muhammad, and challengers James Davis and Susie Adamson.

We polled the seven board members who are not on the ballot and those who offered a choice picked those three.

Those include Board President Elizabeth Baker and fellow members Chris Sabin, Annemarie Maini, Beth Daugherty and Maureen Jones. Board Member Donna Smith said she was not offering an endorsement in the race, while Madhu Pai said she had not decided.

Lawson-Muhammad and incumbent Johanna Wright are both up for re-election in the race that also includes challenger Anthony Mazzocchi. Daugherty's seat is the third one up for grabs, but she is not seeking re-election.

Interestingly, Student Board Representative Philip Saulean said he is backing Wright.

12 OPEN HOUSES TODAY

No Giants game today, so check out your next home or just see what the market is offering.

Full list HERE.


Saturday, October 29, 2016

FREE SMOKE DETECTORS FOR THE NEEDY AND SENIORS

From Maplewood Fire:


LOTSA LIBRARY FOR A SATURDAY

Create Space – Maplewood Library’s Makerspace is Open!

10:00 am – 1:00 pm

Hilton Branch – Every Tuesday 5:00-8:00 pm, Thursday 5:00-8:00 pm, and Saturday 10-1 pm. Patrons can use Rhino 3D software to build a model, print an object on our 3D printer or use our new color printer or laminator.  There are also Snap Circuits, Squishy Circuits, littleBits and SparkFun kits for the kids. Raspberry Pi single board computers are also available to learn more about computer science.  More information about the Create Space…

Yarn & Fiber Arts Group

10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Main Library – A gathering for people who knit, crochet, quilt, sew, embroider or do other creative things with yarn or fabric. Enjoy a relaxing morning working on your projects and get feedback and advice from fellow crafters. Bring your own supplies. All skill levels are welcome! Facilitated by Maplewood resident Amy Zorn. Drop in.

Explore What’s New at the Newark Museum with Curator of American Art, Tricia Laughlin Bloom

2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

The Newark Museum has collected African-American art since 1929, and that collection has grown to more than 360 works of art.  Modern Heroics: 75 Years of African-American Expressionism at the Newark Museum presents highlights from this distinguished collection, bringing together painting and sculpture by 24 modern and contemporary African-American artists, spanning from Beauford Delaney to Mickalene Thomas.
 
Also on view: the newly reinstalled Native American galleries. Learn about this exciting reinstallation, Native Artists of North America, which includes some 100 rarely exhibited works from the Arts of the Americas collection.

Friday, October 28, 2016

HOBOKEN TRAIN SERVICE FULLY RESTORED

About four weeks after the deadly train crash shutdown Hoboken terminal for days, and then partially for weeks, NJ Transit quietly announced it is fully back to service.

They posted this short notice this afternoon:

Oct 28, 2016  02:03:38 PM
Full Rail Service has resumed into and out of Hoboken Terminal.

TAKE THE MAPLEWOOD SOLAR CHALLENGE

From the Township:

Maplewood Township has partnered with Sustainable Jersey to bring you a new tool that gives you quotes from up to eight pre-qualified contractors. All of the options (including renting versus purchase) are provided in direct comparison, so you can choose the best option.

More info HERE.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN MESSAGE FROM THE SCHOOL BOARD CANDIDATES

With Halloween just days away, we thought we'd bring a little holiday message with the five candidates running for the Board of Education.

See if you can spot Stephanie Lawson-Muhammad, Johanna Wright, Susie Adamson, Tony Mazzocchi and James Davis in the video below:



And make sure to vote on Nov. 8.

DISTRICT ANNOUNCES FOCUS GROUP FOR SPECIAL SERVICES DIRECTOR SEARCH



Just days after hiring an outside firm to conduct the search for a new director of special services, the school district has announced plans for a focus group on the search.

We reported earlier this week the school board had approved hiring Atlantic Research of Chicago, the same search firm that found Superintendent John Ramos last year, for $7,500. 

The district posted this notice on the next phase Thursday:

Thursday, October 27, 2016

HOW TO DONATE BOOKS TO THE MAPLEWOOD FRIENDS OF THE LIBRARY SALE

TOWNSHIP COMMITTEE CANDIDATES RAISE MORE THAN $9,000


The two candidates for Township Committee have raised a combined $9,170 in the election battle, according to the latest campaign disclosure statements.

Documents filed with the state Election Law Enforcement Commission indicate Democrat Frank McGehee has brought in $5,407.15 as of Oct. 21, while Republican Mike Summsersgill has raised $3,763.

Summersgill has spent more than McGehee so far, with disbursements of $2,366.55 to McGehee's $1,606.05. 

Among McGehee's contributors are Township Committee member Greg Lembrich, former TC member Kathy Leventhal and Sal Renda, husband of TC Member Nancy Adams. Each were listed with contributions of $30 or less that had to be reported because they were cash. He also received a $1,000 contribution from the Maplewood Democratic Committee.

McGehee has $3,450 in contributions of less than $300 each that do not require itemized disclosure. We reportedly earlier that McGehee had loaned himself $499 for his primary campaign, with another $1,000 donated by former mayor Fred Profeta. The latest report indicates he transferred $527.15 from that earlier campaign to his general election coffers.

Summersgill, meanwhile, listed one donor of more than $300, Robert Hamilton of Princeton, who is listed as a financial analyst at Johnson & Johnson. Summergill also listed a $1,625.94 loan from himself.

McGehee and Summersgill are running for the lone TC seat up this year, which had been held by Marlon Brownlee prior to his resignation in August. Ian Grodman was appointed to fill the seat until the end of Brownlee's term on Dec. 31, 2016.

Election Day is Nov 8.

MAPLEWOOD LIBRARY OVERDUE FINE AMNESTY ALMOST OVER

From Maplewood Library:

clean-slate
During October, kids in grades K-12 with a Maplewood Library card can have their overdue fines waived. 

Come in person to Main Library or Hilton Branch and start with a clean slate!

(This does not apply to lost or billed materials.)
And if you don’t have a card, now is the perfect time to get one.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

HOMECOMING A BIG HIT

More than 400 students attended the Columbia High School homecoming dance on Oct 15, according to School Board Student Representative Philip Saulean.

He recently noted that it raised $10,000 for the junior and senior classes, which will be sharing the funds for their events and needs equally.


INCREASED HEALTH PLAN USE FORCES SCHOOL DISTRICT TO SWITCH

School district employees were using the health plan at a much higher rate than expected this past year, according to district officials, who said it forced them to switch back to the state-run plan in order to avoid a big premium hike.

"Costs have been driven higher by the fact that we are using at a rate of about 137%," Superintendent John Ramos said at a special meeting Monday. "Where as the insurance company would have anticipated an 85% or so usage."

The school board on Monday voted unanimously to switch from Horizon to the state plan after being advised the Horizon program would increase rates by 29% for 2017. The state plan increase will be only 15%, which has already been accounted for in the current budget. The vote was 7-0, with Board Member Stephanie Lawson-Muhammad absent and Board Member Johanna Wright abstaining because her daughter is a district employee.

The premium increase is based on an increase in use of the health plan, according to Business Administrator Paul Roth. He said Horizon reports that it had estimated spending 85 cents for every dollar taken in under the district's coverage, but instead spent $1.37 for every dollar taken in because of the increased use.

Superintendent John Ramos described them as cost increases that were "frankly unexpected" and "out of our control." He said usage had been at 85% in the past.

Board President Elizabeth Baker stressed that the health plan provisions will not change and employees will not see any reduction in service. It will take effect Feb. 1, 2017 because the district needs to give 90 days notice.

See their extended comments below:



 

LIBRARY FOREIGN POLICY DISCUSSION EVENT TODAY

Foreign Policy Association Great Decisions Discussion Program

10:00 am - 12:00 pm

This fall, Maplewood Library will be hosting Great Decisions, America’s largest discussion program on world affairs. Participants read the materials provided and meet to discuss the most critical global issues facing America today. 

Todays topic:  The United Nations Post-2015

REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. Participants need to make a serious commitment to reading the material provided as well as the supplementary articles available online.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

CCR SCHOOL BOARD CANDIDATES FORUM TONIGHT


CELL PHONE ROBBERY AND SEVERAL THEFTS LEAD POLICE WEEK

From Maplewood Police:

October 19, 2016; Robbery; At approximately 8:15 AM, a gray pickup truck stopped in front of a home on Fernwood Rd.  The male driver exited the vehicle and approached a 24 year old female that was walking to her car.  The male demanded her cell phone and purse.  He then re-entered the pickup truck and fled the scene with the items.  The victim was not injured.  The Ford F250 used in the robbery was recovered by Maplewood Detectives approximately 30 minutes later in Newark and it was determined to be a stolen vehicle.  The Detective Bureau is continuing to investigate this incident and the area is being given extra attention by patrol units.

October 19, 2016; Motor Vehicle Theft; During the overnight or early morning hours, a Ford pickup truck parked in the driveway of a Boyden Ave home near Irvington Ave was stolen.  The vehicle was recovered in Newark.


October 23, 2016; Bicycle Theft; Sometime over the previous two day period, an unsecured bicycle left in the backyard of a Midland Blvd home was stolen.

October 23, 2016; Theft from Auto; During the overnight hours, change was removed from an unsecured vehicle parked on Crowell Pl.

SEARCH FIRM THAT FOUND SUPERINTENDENT HIRED FOR SPECIAL SERVICES DIRECTOR HUNT

The Board of Education on Monday night approved spending $7,500 on a search firm to find a new director of special services, choosing the same outfit that found Superintendent John Ramos.

The resolution was approved, 7-1, with Board Member Johanna Wright opposed and Board Member Stephanie Lawson-Muhammad absent. It includes $7,000 for the firm of Atlantic Research Partners of Chicago, and $500 for travel.

Atlantic was the same firm used a year ago to find a new superintendent, resulting in the hiring of Ramos who started Aug. 1, 2015.

Originally, the resolution was for $14,500, with $500 of that for travel because it was to seek a board attorney as well. But Ramos said that search was postponed.

The board held the special meeting, in part, to approve the search as soon as possible so a replacement could be found before the end of 2016. 

Current Special Services Director Ella Rideau, whose retirement was accepted by the board at the Sept. 28, 2016, is set to leave as of March 1, 2017. Ramos said it is hoped a replacement would have time to work with Rideau on a smooth transition before she leaves.

But Wright suggested waiting and doing a search without an outside firm first before spending the money

See some of the discussion and the reasons for the vote below:


ANOTHER BIG LIBRARY DAY: FROM STORYTIMES TO DIGITAL CLINIC

Hilton Preschool Storytime

4:00 pm – 4:30 pm

Hilton Branch * Ages 2 1/2 – 5 * Drop In
All children must be accompanied by an adult

 

Create Space – Maplewood Library’s Makerspace is Open!

5:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Hilton Branch – Every Tuesday 5:00-8:00 pm, Thursday 5:00-8:00 pm, and Saturday 10-1 pm. Patrons can use Rhino 3D software to build a model, print an object on our 3D printer or use our new color printer or laminator.  There are also Snap Circuits, Squishy Circuits, littleBits and SparkFun kits for the kids. Raspberry Pi single board computers are also available to learn more about computer science.  More information about the Create Space…

 

Digital Device Clinic

5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Get free one-on-one support for using your e-reader, tablet, smartphone, or other electronic device.  The clinics will take place during the Create Space drop-in hours. Open to adults, teens and children. 

 

Hilton Pajama Storytime

7:00 pm – 7:30 pm

Hilton Branch * All ages * Drop In
Come to Hilton – in your pajamas if you’d like – and hear some stories. All children must be accompanied by an adul

Monday, October 24, 2016

SCHOOL BOARD TO SPEND $15,000 ON SPECIAL SERVICES DIRECTOR SEARCH

The Board of Education tonight plans to approve spending $15,000 on an outside consultant to find a new director of special services

See the agenda HERE.

It includes a resolution authorizing the district to hire Atlantic Research Partners of Chicago to conduct the search for $14,500, with $500 allocated for travel.

See the resolution HERE.

Also on tonight's agenda is a resolution to withdraw from the Horizon private health plan that the district has been using and switch back to the state-run program. The resolution states that the Horizon plan is due for a 29% cost increase, while the state plan is set to increase by just 15%, a rate already included in the district budget.

The meeting is set for 7:30 p.m. in the Columbia High School auditorium.

SETH BOYDEN CONTINUES HALLOWEEN BAN THIS YEAR

Seth Boyden School plans to repeat the ban on Halloween celebrations and costumes at the school again this year.

You may recall in 2015, the request that students not wear costumes to class or engage in on-campus celebrations brought some opposition, and even angry threats from out-of-towners.

The ban was first proposed in 2014, but later reversed that year after district officials stepped in. But it was put in place and kept in place last year.

Much of the reasoning for the ban, however, was from local parents who objected to the stress it can put on families, and even the cost related to such in-class events and costumes. Seth Boyden has more low-income families than any elementary school in the district.

The administration also said then that about 20% of students did not participate in the celebrations and costumes.

Damion Frye, who became Seth Boyden principal at the beginning of the current school year, said in a letter to parents earlier this month that the policy will remain.

It stated, in part:

In keeping with last year’s decision, please do not send your child to school with a costume or candy on October, 31st.  We thank you in advance for your continued cooperation.

See the entire letter below:



TOWNSHIP ISSUES DROUGHT NOTICE

From the Township:

VOORHEES, N.J. (Oct. 21, 2016) – The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has issued a Drought Warning for the following 14 counties: Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union and Warren.

The Drought Warning designation is an exercise of the DEP’s non-emergency authority and aims to reduce the likelihood or severity of an impending water shortage and/or water emergency. Under a Warning, the DEP may direct actions to be taken by water suppliers that seek to preserve and balance water supplies in the affected region(s).

During this period of diminished rainfall and lower reservoir storage levels, New Jersey American Water encourages its customers to use irrigation conservation measures and begin using an odd/even schedule for outdoor watering.

“With our customers’ cooperation in conserving water, we can continue to effectively manage our supplies to meet our customers’ needs,” said Kevin Kirwan, vice president of Operations.

New Jersey American Water will continue to provide regular updates regarding any additional conservation measures, as well as the overall supply status.

NEWARK TEEN CHARGED IN OAKVIEW AVENUE CARJACKING

We've been reporting on the carjacking of a Maplewood woman on Oakview Avenue last week and the arrest of a 13-year-old Newark suspect who was found with an iPhone linked to the crime. 

Now Maplewood police reveal the same teen was charged with the robbery and related crimes.

See their update below:

The Maplewood Police Department and it’s detectives have been working diligently to solve the carjacking from last week. Through their efforts, they have been able to develop probable cause as well as get complaint approval from the Prosecutor’s Office in order to charge a 13 year old. 

The same 13 year old male and resident of Newark had been arrested on the day of the carjacking by Maplewood detectives for being in possession of an iphone taken during the carjacking and an outstanding Newark warrant. 

He has been charged with carjacking, robbery and conspiracy for the incident in Maplewood on October 16th. The investigation is ongoing and the area is being given extra attention by patrol units.

TRAFFIC AND PEDESTRIAN SAFETY SUMMIT TODAY

From the Township:

7:30pm At The Woodland 
 
Maplewood is a walking town and all of us need to focus more energy on pedestrian safety and enforcement of traffic laws. On June 20th, Mayor Vic De Luca convened a meeting of municipal department directors, the police and fire chiefs, traffic engineers and pedestrian safety advocates to discuss what Maplewood Township can do to improve the safety of those walking and driving in our community.

During the past 90 days, the Township has taken action to educate and encourage members of our community to develop and maintain safe practices while driving, walking and cycling in Maplewood. We’ve also stepped up traffic enforcement and made changes in road designs.

We would like to report on these actions and discuss our plans for the future. And we want to hear from you about your concerns and any suggestions we might consider.

Come out to the Traffic and Pedestrian Safety Summit and be part of the solution to this growing problem.

SCHOOL BOARD CANDIDATES ANSWER OUR QUESTIONNAIRES

We asked each of the candidates running for school board to fill out an extensive questionnaire on issues of interest to voters related to the district and the board.

Those running for the three seats up for grabs are incumbents Johanna Wright and Stephanie Lawson-Muhammad, as well as challengers Susie Adamson, James Davis, and Anthony Mazzocchi.

The questions include their priorities for the board, views on Superintendent John Ramos, as well as the achievement gap, the baseball coach bullying case, the budget, and outsourcing.

See them all HERE.

MAPLEWOOD MAN ARRESTED IN NEWARK FOR DUI, THEFT AND CRASHING INTO A BUSINESS

Hakeem Gayle
From Newark Police:

Newark Public Safety Director Anthony F. Ambrose announces that police have arrested Hakeem O. Gayle, 22, of Maplewood for crashing his vehicle through the door of a Newark business while driving drunk on Saturday, October 22, 2016.  

At approximately 9:40 p.m., officers responded to a business at 98 Elm Road on a call of a motor vehicle crash. Gayle had driven his vehicle, a silver 2009 Chevrolet Impala, through the doorway of the business at the location.

When the 59-year old male business owner used his cell phone to photograph the scene, Gayle took the cell phone from him and fled on foot. Concerned citizens apprehended Gayle and held him for police. No injuries were reported.

Gayle’s vehicle had been involved in a crash at South Street and McCarter Highway at approximately 9:33 p.m. That incident involved two other vehicles and was reported by victims as a hit and run as Gayle’s vehicle fled the scene before police arrived.

Gayle was arrested at 98 Elm Road without incident. He was found to be in possession of suspected CDS marijuana. He is charged with Theft, Driving While Intoxicated, Possession of CDS, Criminal Mischief and Contempt. His passenger, Juan S. Fonrose, 20, of East Orange, was also arrested for Driving While Intoxicated and Contempt.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

MAPLEWOODIANS OF THE WEEK: FIRE, POLICE AND RESCUE SQUADS

Maplewood Fire, Police, and rescue workers from South Orange did a great job with a stubborn house fire this past week on Ostwood Terrace.

They helped residents who were left homeless as well as dousing the three-alarm blaze before it spread.

For this they are our Maplewoodians of the Week.


15 OPEN HOUSES TODAY

Lots to choose from today.

So after you watch the Giants from London this morning head out to find your next home or just see what the market is offering.

Full list HERE.


DOG PARK HALLOWEEN COSTUME CONTEST TODAY

It's become one of the most fun events at the South Mountain Reservation dog park - the annual dog Halloween costume contest.

And it's set for today after a rain out yesterday.

See the notice below: 

Essex County South Mountain Dog Park, Maplewood/Millburn – 1:15 p.m. Registration; 2 p.m. Parade

The Essex County canine costume parades have grown into a favorite Halloween celebration. Bring your pet or just come to see the creative costumes. Prizes will be awarded. Free.


Saturday, October 22, 2016

TOWNSHIP COMMITTEE CANDIDATES ON WORKING TOGETHER, MUTUAL RESPECT AND THEIR COFFEE DATE?

If you want some cordial political discourse after the presidential sniping of Donald Trump, you may look toward the Township Committee race.

While Democrat Frank McGehee and Republican Mike Summersgill are campaigning strongly against each other for the lone open seat on the TC, they showed signs of mutual respect and a willingness to work together after the election at a recent event.

During the Oct. 15 candidates forum sponsored by Senior Share at Le Saison Inn, each was asked if he would seek to keep his opponent involved in Township issues if they won.

Both said yes.

"I was stuck by Frank's experience with the Economic Development Commission," Summersgill said when asked. "It is probably something we should tap into with Frank ... I would love it and I would support bringing back a citizen member and, Frank, I think you would be an excellent person for that job."

McGehee offered a similar view, and revealed the two had actually been sociable during the campaign.

"Mike and I actually sat down for coffee a couple of months back," McGehee admitted. "We said we were going to meet and not talk politics, we're going to talk about each other and get to know each other as people. At the end of the day we're citizens, we're residents."

He then said the two have mutual friends who might be stuck in the middle when asked to support one over the other.

"We have relationships, we have lots of mutual friends," McGehee said. "It's taxing on some of them, and we understand that, we appreciate them just being our friends. I think Mike is dynamic and I think Mike brings a lot to Maplewood ... I think Mike's going to be here for a long time and I'm going to work with Mike on some of the things he's talking about."

"If I am to win, the election, Mike and I will sit down and instead of coffee, we'll have a beer and talk about what he wants to do and I'll support that."

See that entire candidates forum below: 



SCHOOL BOARD CANDIDATES ON THE WEB

As the final weeks of the school board campaign heat up, we are planning to post our questionnaires for each candidate next week. 

Meanwhile, here are links to their websites for further reviewing of their positions, issues and events.

Susie Adamson:
http://www.adamsonforboe2016.com


James Davis and Stephanie Lawson-Muhammed: http://www.boe2016.com

Anthony Mazzocchi: http://www.mazzocchiboe2016.com

Johanna Wright http://www.wrightforboe.com

DOCUMENT SHRED-IT DAY TODAY

From the Township:

Shred-It Day is an opportunity for Maplewood residents to shred any personal paper items such as legal documents, private records and files, books, etc. Maplewood Recycling Center, located at 359 Boyden Ave. 8am – 12pm, or until the truck fills up, whichever occurs first.

THIS SERVICE IS STRICTLY FOR MAPLEWOOD RESIDENTS ONLY

SOUTH MOUNTAIN RESERVATION CANINE COSTUME CONTEST POSTPONED TO SUNDAY

The Strut Your Mutt Halloween dog costume contest and walk at the South Mountain Reservation dog park has been postponed to Sunday at 2 p.m.

See more information on it HERE.


PRESCRIPTION DRUG BUY BACK DAY TODAY

From Maplewood Police:

Unused and expired prescription drugs may be dropped off at Maplewood Police Headquarters today between  10 AM and 2 PM.

Unused or expired prescription medications are a public safety issue, leading to accidental poisoning, overdose, and abuse. Pharmaceutical drugs can be just as dangerous as street drugs when taken without a prescription or a doctor's supervision. The non-medical use of prescription drugs ranks second only to marijuana as the most common form of drug abuse in America. 

The majority of teenagers abusing prescription drugs get them from family and friends - and the home medicine cabinet. Unused prescription drugs thrown in the trash can be retrieved and abused or illegally sold. Unused drugs that are flushed contaminate the water supply. Proper disposal of unused drugs saves lives and protects the environment. Take-back programs are the best way to dispose of old drugs. 

But if you can not make the program: ~ Take the meds out of their bottles; ~ Mix them with something unappealing like used kitty litter or coffee grounds; ~ Seal them in a bag or disposable container, and throw that away. For more information on prescription drug abuse, go to: ~ www.dea.gov ~ www.getsmartaboutdrugs.com ~ www.justthinktwice.com

Friday, October 21, 2016

VIDEO - LATEST SCHOOL BOARD CANDIDATES FORUM

The five candidates running for three open seats on the school board faced off in the latest debate Thursday night at De Hart Community Center.

Watch the entire debate, courtesy of SOMA TV, below:


SPECIAL SCHOOL BOARD MEETING SET FOR MONDAY ON HEALTH PLAN, SPECIAL SERVICES

The Board of Education will hold a special board meeting on Monday, Oct. 24, at 7:30 p.m., according to an agenda posted today.

It states only that the board will discuss the district employee health plan and the director of special services search. It also includes two action items on those issues, but no specifics.

See the agenda HERE.

There are no further details, but we will seek more and provide them as they become available. Also no word on why these items could not have been considered at the last board meeting last Monday.