Government

Westfield Town Council Votes on Liquor Laws, Marijuana Dispensary Restrictions and More

May 20, 2014 at 10:56 PM

WESTFIELD, NJ — Only Councilwoman Vicki Kimmins voted no Tuesday night to an ordinance changing Westfield's liquor license laws to allow restaurants with conditional liquor licenses to serve food and alcohol at a bar and serve patrons alcohol without necessarily seating them at a table or serving them food. Restaurants with these licenses would still be required to make at least 50 percent of their money from food sales.

A public hearing on the ordinance, number 2017, will take place June 3 before a final vote is held, after which the ordiance could take effect.

Kimmins told TAP earlier this month that she was totally opposed to the change in the law.

Sign Up for E-News

“I believe it will change the fabric of our downtown,” she said. “As lovely as Summit and Cranford are, I am not looking for Westfield to become Summit or Cranford. Westfield has the reputation it has for a reason. I enjoy that our town is not full of ‘bars.’ Our downtown sidewalk cafe tables are currently enjoyed by families, and I would like to keep it that way.”

To read that earlier story, click here.

Before the vote, several Westfield residents told the council that they were in favor of changing the law. But one resident, John Blake, argued against it, as he did at the last meeting. Among his arguments, he said that the availability of alcohol would increase by 150 percent.

Councilman James Foerst, chair of the code review and town property committee, responded that the ordinance would not increase the number of liquor licenses from 10.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R7q8NQNjIn0

Later, Foerst argued that people who wish to go out for a drink but not necessarily for dinner are going to other towns to do so. Councilwoman Jo Ann Neylan, Councilman Frank Arena and Councilman Sam Della Fera echoed that.

“We want our downtown to be as successful as possible and in my mind we’re hindering that success,” said Della Fera of the existing law.

The ordinance would also change the limitation on the number of musicians who can entertain at these establishments any given time from one to five and would raise the town’s annual liquor license fees, per state guidelines.

The ordinance was one of several that passed on first reading at Tuesday's town council meeting as part of the code review and town property committee’s efforts to update an antiquated town code.

Ordinance 2022 would restrict any medical marijuana dispensary opening in Westfield to one approved zone, and would limit hours and manner of operation.

Foerst told the council at a conference meeting earlier that evening that the town would not be able to completely restrict medical marijuana dispensaries from opening in Westfield.

Ordinance 2021 would require anyone filming in Westfield to pay a fee. (Filming for educational purposes would be exempt, and students would pay a reduced fee.) Currently, the law only requires a fee for filming on public property.

“The burden upon the town is the same whether on public or private land,” said Foerst.

Other ordinances pertained to exterior property maintenance, streets and sidewalks and trees, shrubs, weeds and other plant growth.

Councilman Keith Loughlin was absent from Tuesday’s meeting.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News

Westfield

Clark Car Burglary Suspects Identified, Police Seek Information

December 6, 2016

CLARK, NJ – Eight burglaries to unlocked cars on the east side of Clark occurred over Sunday night, Clark Police reported on Monday. The incidents occurred on St. Laurent Drive and Colonial Drive in the Ross Street area.

“The investigation has progressed fairly quickly today,” Clark Chief of Police Pedro Matos said. “We already have pictures of the two individuals we ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_f32516e4005888ddb1d6_y

Wed, December 7, 5:30 AM

Westfield Area YMCA, Westfield

Free Wellness Wednesday at Westfield Area YMCA

Health & Wellness

Carousel_image_bf51a511ce0eb4251769_tobelosdinnerhead

Wed, December 7, 7:00 PM

Butcher Burgers, Westfield

Wine Dinner: A Taste of Spain

Food & Drink

Westfield Police Blotter: DWI with Child in Vehicle, Home Burglary Reported

November 30, 2016

November 25, 2016 2:05 p.m.

Officers Domanoski and Penn arrested Kenneth T. Oakes, age 39, of Scotch Plains, NJ, for possession of marijuana under 50 grams and possession of drug paraphernalia subsequent to a motor vehicle stop. Mr. Oakes was transported to WPD, processed and released with a summons.

November 26, 2016

Officer Domanoski and Ferry arrested Brenda Titus, age 41, of Newark, ...

Franklin School Invites Community to Holiday Shopping Event

December 7, 2016

The Franklin Elementary School PTO invites the community to attend a holiday shopping event on Monday, Dec. 12, from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m in the school gymnasium located at 700 Prospect Street.

It will feature clothing, jewelry, kids’ accessories, custom gifts, stationary, sports items and more.  We can accept cash, checks and credit cards.

Join us for a fun way to do ...

Give With Your Heart ... But Use Your Head

It is that most wonderful time of the year when every day becomes a mad scramble to attend parties, meet family obligations, buy gifts and, in between, get work done. The holiday season engenders feelings of nostalgia, hope and gratitude. And, with that, we spend incredible sums of money, sometimes without thinking. Generosity is a virtue, so here are some basic tips on giving to ...

Westfield Area YMCA Believes in the Power of Giving

The Westfield Area YMCA is dedicated to celebrating the holiday giving season and fostering social responsibility by offering its annual “Giving Tree” located in the Main Y Lobby at 220 Clark Street in Westfield.  Caring members of the community can select an angel off the tree and spread holiday cheer to help someone in need this season. Gifts should be returned to the tree to ...

‘A Child’s Christmas in Wales' Captures Old-Fashioned Nostalgia at Shakespeare Theatre

MADISON, NJ – It’s clear the Welsh love to sing as the evening moves on with relatives gathering for Christmas dinner at the Thomas home in Wales.

The play opens with three children and then a chorus singing “In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind made moan,” a melancholy tune that conjures visions of Swansea, a village in Wales,  with “fallen snow on ...

Lindabury Hosts Fall Meeting of International Network of Law Firms

The law firm of Lindabury, McCormick, Estabrook & Cooper, P.C., recently played host to the Fall meeting of LEGUS, is an international network of high quality mid-sized law firms located across the globe.  More than 60 firms from across the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East sent senior level representatives to the two-day meeting held at the W Hotel in Hoboken.   ...

Beckerman’s Theory of Everything

Any armchair theoretical physicist knows that Stephen Hawking has pursued a lifelong quest to come up with a Theory of Everything. This all-encompassing theory would tie together general relativity (large scale and high mass galaxies, stars, etc), quantum theory (quantum mechanics, quarks, atoms, subatomic particles), and Newtonian physics (gravity on small bodies, gas laws, electromagnetism) to ...

Family Portraits After the Death of a Family Member

One of the gifts of working in the field of children’s grief support is the support I receive from my family and friends. They always have their eyes peeled for interesting articles that relate to grief and loss. Usually they send the articles to me with a kind note, like “this made me think of you” or “thought you’d be interested in this!”

A few days ago my ...

Female Dog Found in Roselle

This female dog was found at 315 East 1st Ave. in Roselle.  She is currently at the Roselle Police Headquarters. If this is your pet or you know the owner call the Roselle Police at 908-245- 2000. 

Holy Trinity School Spotlight - Kindergarten

At Holy Trinity School, Kindergarten is cool!  In Kindergarten, students learn the fundamental skills necessary to thrive in a school environment. The Holy Trinity Kindergarten is a full-day, faith-based program focused on reading readiness, language development, math, and science concepts.   Students also take part in several special classes each week that include music, library, ...

GWACC (Greater Westfield Area Chamber of Commerce) Invites the Chamber and Community Members to Enjoy a Trip to Pompeii & the Amalfi Coast

GWACC has announced today that it will be visiting irresistible Southern Italy & Amalfi Coast, departing Oct. 11, 2017 and is inviting chamber members, and family and friends of chamber members to join them on this once in a lifetime experience.

Rich in culture and stunning scenery, irresistible Southern Italy is the setting for this breathtaking journey. Enjoy an eight day ...

Tamaques Elementary Launches New 'Makerspace' Initiative

With the objective of fostering students' critical thinking, imagination and creativity, Westfield Public School librarian Christine Pitarresi has spearheaded a new program at Tamaques Elementary, called "Makerspace." Observing current trends and needs for growing minds, Ms. Pitarresi enthusiastically noted, "We used to be a society of makers, now we are ...

Rutgers Students Take Over Board of Governors Meeting, Demand University Become Immigrant Sanctuary

December 6, 2016

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Dozens of students stormed the Rutgers University Board of Governors meeting Tuesday, demanding University President Robert Barchi strengthen the school’s commitment to undocumented immigrants and other minority groups in anticipation of Donald Trump’s presidency.

The group, believing Barchi did not go far enough in declaring Rutgers a “safe haven” ...