Other NJ News

Roxbury Man Wants Something Done About Unwanted Tossed Newspapers

366f65e8aa1bb0cb3c47_37cca5d05e488fd853ba_paper.jpg
Uninvited guest; A free sample of a newspaper tossed on a Roxbury front yard
366f65e8aa1bb0cb3c47_37cca5d05e488fd853ba_paper.jpg

ROXBURY, NJ - Thanks to the Internet, print newspapers have been declining for a decade. There’s at least one Roxbury resident who won’t miss a method used by the struggling industry to stay afloat: The free sample paper thrown on front yards.

That person is Emil Ruesch of Landing. He came last week to a Roxbury Mayor and Council meeting and spoke his mind.

“I’m here to get support in banning these free publications that are ruining our community,” Ruesch told the town officials.

Sign Up for E-News

He said the freebie papers are a form of littering he’s been unsuccessfully battling for years. “I’ve been unable to stop it,” Ruesch said. He said it’s bad enough when the tossed and unclaimed newspapers stay inside their plastic wrappers, but that’s not always what happens.

“Everything comes out,” said Ruesch, noting the subsequent explosion of loose paper and wind-borne plastic bags end up ruining his view of Lake Musconetcong.

“The pages are found in the lake,” he said. “They are going down our storm drains. They are adding pollution in town that we don’t need. It has to be stopped.”

Winter brings more headaches, Ruesch told the council. “A couple of years ago we had a snowstorm,” he said. “The paper was sucked into the auger of my snowblower and it broke the shear pin so I had to shovel through a couple of feet of snow. Where do my rights come in as a taxpayer?”

Then there’s the security aspect. Ruesch said “any burglar with an ounce of brains” can tell when a resident is away on vacation; the pile of free papers out front are a pretty clear indication.

Roxbury Township Attorney Anthony Bucco, who also represents a number of other New Jersey municipalities, told Ruesch he’s not alone in hating the newspaper solicitation method. While he said there are measures that can be taken, Bucco warned “there are some legal ramifications” in attempting to outlaw the practice. “There are Constitutional protections for these media outlets,” he said. “They are there and we have to be cognizant of them.”

Nevertheless, Bucco - who is also a state assemblyman - promised Ruesch he will “look at it, from a legal standpoint,” at the state level. “I agree with you 100 percent,” he said, noting that one municipality took on the newspapers and settled on an ordinance that forced the papers to give - to all it hoped to bless with free samples - “an address, phone number and contact person to call to stop delivery.”

Roxbury Councilman Fred Hall said he agreed with Ruesch, particularly about the security aspect. “When you go away on vacation, the last thing you want to have is any indication the house is empty,” he said. “Where does free speech come in conflict with the ability to protect your home?”

Ruesch said he is not suggesting newspaper delivery via the throw-it-on-the-ground method become illegal in all cases. “I am looking for a choice,” he said “They are not giving me a choice.”

He told the council he came to be on a first-name basis with one newspaper’s circulation department due to his efforts to stop the unwanted deliveries. As for the papers’ Constitutional rights, Ruesch repeatedly suggested that tossing plastic wrapped newspapers is a throwback to days gone by when media outlets had no other way of displaying their wares.

“We are in the 21st century,” he said, urging the council to take on the matter legally. “Any judge in his or her right mind would say we are in the 21st century … Somebody is going to have to take it by the horns and wrestle with it.”

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Denville

Former Jefferson School Staffer Facing Criminal Charges For Alleged Lewd Photos of Students

June 21, 2018

MAPLEWOOD, NJ - A former Jefferson Elementary School paraprofessional has been charged with criminal behavior believed to be related to lewd photos of students at the school that were found on his cell phone after he was arrested in Morris County on an unrelated sexual charge.

It also appears that South Orange Maplewood School District officials knew about the arrests as early as ...

Susan G. Komen North Jersey Increases Program Funding by 15% for 2018-2019 and Awards 13 Grants to 11 Local Community Non-Profit Organizations

June 21, 2018

 

Susan G. Komen North Jersey announced that it will award a total of 13 grants to 11 local community non-profit organizations in its nine-county service area for 2018-2019, with an increase in total program funding at 15% year over year. Since its founding in 1997, Komen North Jersey has awarded nearly $19 million to local community programs in nine North Jersey counties and has directed ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_9f96b00f934f44e64d68_fridays-for-families-social-media-03

Fri, June 22, 3:00 PM

Outside of U.S. Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen's office, Morristown

Fridays for Families: Vigil in Morristown calls ...

Government Health & Wellness Law & Justice

Sat, June 23, 10:00 AM

CASA of Morris and Sussex Counties, Morristown

CASA Information Session

Sun, June 24, 11:00 AM

Mountain Lakes

Art at the Esplanade

Arts & Entertainment

'Half Time' lights up Paper Mill stage

‘Half Time’ turns the tables on aging in gleeful production

By Liz Keill

MILLBURN, NJ – The Paper Mill Playhouse is putting on a smashing new production of “Half Time” to round out its current season.

With actress Georgia Engel in an engaging performance, the cast also features Donna McKehnie, Andre De Shieilds and Lilias White, among a host of other ...

The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn

The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn (William Morrow, 2018)

 

A friend, whose opinion on literature I respect greatly, reported to me recently that she had just finished reading A.J. Finn's debut novel, The Woman in the Window. Of it she said, “I wish I hadn't finished it,” which I interpreted to mean, “It was so good I'm sorry that I finished it.” ...

Small Business Ownership vs. Entrepreneurship

Written by: Samuel K. Burlum, Investigative Reporter and author of The Green Lane, a syndicated column, Published on 6/18/2018

Tags: Business, Community, Crowdfunding, Economy, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Small Business

Source: So, which are you – a Small Business Owner or an Entrepreneur? We compare the similarities and differences between the two, so you can ...