BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - TAPinto Berkeley Heights continues our "Weekly Catch-up with Mayor Angie Devanney" series.

In this week's edition, Mayor Angie Devanney talks about the opening of Berkeley Heights and the creation of the Restaurant Review Committee to temporarily allow for outdoor seating for restaurants.  The committee makes sure that "we're in compliance with any vehicular traffic if you're in a parking lot, as well as the Governor's protocols for COVID," said Mayor Devanney.

In addition, personal care businesses will open on Monday, June 22, and "we're also working very hard with those who have pools, community pool. That's actually been a really big undertaking, and we do have several of those in town. So people can recreate a little bit this summer and enjoy their time off. Also, camps have been allowed to be open but with very stringent protocols." 

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"We still have several indoor sports facilities that aren't quite open yet. So we're hoping to get their doors open -- we want them to be successful. So, you know, we're slowly reopening. We're trying to assist our businesses the best way that we can, making sure that they are following the protocols and that our residents feel safe so they do go out and patronize these businesses," she said.

Mayor Devanney also provided an update on the redevelopment projects. At the June 9th council meeting, Elite Developer's presented the plans for the Mondelli property [10 rental units and park] at the corner of Plainfield and Park avenues and the old Berkeley Florist location [45 rental units]. "So, we're really excited because the Mondelli part of that project is going to be a park and I know that's an eyesore right now. So, we're really excited that they're moving on that project, I believe first."

She also said the Toll Brothers property [the former Little Flower Church property to be 67 carriage homes and condos] is moving forward and the treatment works agreement is on the agenda for this Tuesday's council meeting. "An important piece of information is that once Toll Brothers  has all of their approvals in place, then we are we are entitled to that $10.5 million dollars to help offset the debt. So that's a big. That's a big hurdle to make sure that that gets approved by us and then gets approved by DEP."

In the latest Moody's report, they were impressed with the Township's finances, said Devanney. "Our tax collection rate is actually higher at this point this year than it was last year, in addition to a number of smaller developments coming in downtown as well as these bigger developments. So it really put us in a great financial positioning."

Lastly, Mayor Devanney provided an update on the Municipal Complex. While the negotiations aren't quite there yet, Devanney is hopeful that "we are going to get there shortly," she said. "We obviously want this project finished. I think that once we can cut that ribbon and open the doors, I think the residents are going to be very happy with a new library, seniors will have senior space to congregate and meet when the time comes that they can do that. Recreation, brand-new recreation space, it's so sorely needed. -- Administration, police department, everything will be under one roof. It'll be new and it'll be a gem for the community." Click here for the weekly update of construction progress provided by Mast. 

The next Township Council meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, June 23 at 7 p.m. Click herepdf for the agenda. Find the link to the meeting here.

 Visit the Berkeley Heights Township website for Coronavirus updates and resources. 

Click here for Berkeley Heights Directory of Businesses and their changes in service and hours during the state of emergency and how you can support them during their time of need.

In the news:

Barbershops and Salons Are Back in 3 Days, Murphy Says It’s the First Big Test Toward A Return Indoors

Top New Jersey Student Athlete Shares Lessons in Character and Leadership

National Conversation on Racism Localized at Race Unity Day Event

Columbia Middle School Celebrates Largest 8th Grade Class with Remote Promotion Ceremony

Pop-up Cafés Draw Large Outside Dining Crowd On Opening Day

COVID-19 Update:

  • Numbers reflect Saturday June 20, 2020 as there was NO CHANGE on Sunday, June 21, 2020

  • 727 new cases in New Jersey; 168,834 total
  • 24 new cases in Union County; 16,298 total
  • 57 new deaths in New Jersey; 12,857 total
  • 3 new deaths in Union County; 1,135 total
  • Berkeley Heights:
    • 79 Active Cases (with 73 from LTC)
    • 206 closed Cases (65 recovered from LTC, 53 LTC deaths, 4 Community Deaths)
    • Total of 285 Cases
  • Editor's Note: Click here to provide TAPinto Berkeley Heights with a story tip! Email bpeer@tapinto with a question for consideration in our Weekly Catch-up with Mayor Angie Devanney.