DENVILLE, NJ – Denville Business Administrator Steven Ward presented the 2019 Best Practices Inventory during the Denville Township Council meeting on Oct. 1.

The Best Practices Inventory is a questionnaire that must be completed to receive the full amount of state aid for towns that achieve good scores.

“The Best Practices Inventory is required by each municipality,” said Ward. “The percentage of state aid that is returned to the municipality is tied to how well you. The controversial part of it is that some of the items they include are not statutorily required. They’re just recommended best practices. However, even with that said, we’ve always scored exceptionally well, as we did this year. Looking through the booklet, we basically scored ‘yes’ on all of the items.”

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According to Ward, the township answered 38 out of 41 entries as “yes,” scoring 93 percent. Accordingly, the township should receive 100 percent of the state aid payment afforded to it, which for 2019 equals $1,811,987.

Earlier in the meeting, Denville Mayor Thomas Andes delivered a proclamation to Vision Loss Alliance of New Jersey (VLANJ). VLANJ is a Denville-based nonprofit organization that seeks to assist those who are blind or have low vision by providing support, education, skills training, assistive technology and employment opportunities. Jennifer Singer, VLANJ’s director of development and a Randolph resident, accepted the proclamation on the organization’s behalf.

According to the proclamation, more than 160,0000 people in New Jersey are affected by blindness and low vision. The proclamation further stated that the National Eye Institute projects the number of people with serious visual impairment or blindness in the U.S. to exceed eight million by 2050, while the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that approximately 61 million adults in the U.S. are at high risk of serious vision loss.

“Vision Loss Alliance has locations in Morris, Essex and Bergen counties and is the only comprehensive, nonresidential vision rehabilitation program for adults in New Jersey,” read Andes.

“We are proud to say one of the locations resides here in Denville, and Vision Loss Alliance of New Jersey, one of the state’s longest-serving nonprofits for adults with vision loss, is working to expand services related to education, independence and overall wellbeing.”

“Now, therefore, I, Thomas W. Andes, mayor of the Township of Denville, proclaim October 2019 Blindness Awareness Month in Denville and congratulate Vision Loss Alliance of New Jersey on its 76 years of exemplary work to increase public awareness about eye disease and eye care, and help us understand the challenges our vision-impaired loved ones, friends, neighbors and co-workers deal with on a daily basis.”

“Thank you for having me here in celebration of Blindness Awareness Month,” said Singer.

“We hope that people understand what our students go through and what can help them become independent in our community.”

Singer then donated a painting to the Denville Township Council, which will hang at Town Hall. VLANJ student Lissette St. Genis created the artwork.

Singer also announced VLANJ’s upcoming Dining in the Dark fundraising event, which will take place at The Meadow Wood in Randolph, on Oct. 24, at 6 p.m.

“I can tell you that I’ve only been here for about four to five months and I’m amazed by what our students can do.”

For more information on VLANJ and its latest activities, visit https://www.vlanj.org.

 

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