Real Estate

Roxbury Manager Flushes Well Water Test Event

7f96bc20b1efa9d79e77_img007.jpg
Flyer, distributed at Roxbury council meeting on Tuesday, about event canceled on Wednesday
7f96bc20b1efa9d79e77_img007.jpg

ROXBURY, NJ – Roxbury Township Manager John Shepherd today canceled an event, announced the night before, at which Roxbury residents could have bought well water testing kits from a non-profit environmental group.

Although Shepherd said he canceled the Oct. 14 event due to “questions” raised today, and did not elaborate, other township officials said the manager made the move because the group involved in the event was incorrectly portraying it as a partnership with the township. They added that Roxbury already offers free well water testing to residents.

The water testing kits were to be sold by Raritan Headwater Association, a non-profit organization, as part of its annual "Community Well Testing" program. The kit sales were to have occurred in Roxbury Town Hall form 9 a.m. to noon. The group conducted a similar kit sale last year.

Sign Up for E-News

Flyers announcing the event were distributed in town hall this week. The event was mentioned at Tuesday’s meeting of the Mayor and Council by Roxbury Councilman Dan Kline, who has been working with Raritan Headwaters to organize the kit sales.

The event was canceled without Kline being contacted. Asked why, Shepherd did not go into detail.

“As you know, this was announced last evening by Councilman Kline,” he wrote in an email. “Some of the Council were not at the meeting and some questions about the program have arisen. So this might take some additional time to evaluate.”

When advised today, by a reporter, of the event's cancellation, Kline - the council's sole Democrat - was surprised and said he hoped "politics" weren't involved. Shepherd’s action surprised not only Kline but also a representative of Raritan Headwaters. “I’m confused,” said Raritan Headwaters Well Test Manager Mara Tippett shortly after receiving an email from the township advising about the event cancellation.

Tippett said she’d been discussing the event earlier in the morning with “a lovely woman” in the Roxbury Health Department who gave no indication the township was thinking about pulling the plug.

Shepherd's decision to cancel the event came only hours after his assistant emailed reporters asking them to promote it. Attached to the email was a statement, appearing to have been authored by Raritan Headwaters, which portrayed the event as the fruits of a partnership between itself and the township. 

Roxbury Mayor Mark Crowley said it was that language, and the fact that Roxbury already offers free well water testing to residents, that prompted Shepherd to pull on the reins. He said there are strict protocols involving the township getting involved in partnerships and he also noted that only four of the council's seven members were at Tuesday's meeting where Kline mentioned the event.

Although Kline initially said he feared politics were at work, he later took a more conciliatory tone. “We're working on resolving some differences of opinion and will get something out soon,” Kline wrote in an email.

Crowley said politics had nothing to do with the manager's action. "I applaud Mr. Shepherd's decision to go back to the (township) environmental commission and our health department (to review the matter)," he said. "That is the protocol of the township."

Only four of the Mayor and Council's seven members were at Tuesday meetings. Councilman Robert DeFillippo, one of them, said he was surprised when Kline announced the event. "Certainly we were not given any heads-up this was coming last night," he said. "So, in that sense, we would have liked to have gotten, at least as a courtesy, some advance notice about this."

"What's In Your Water?" ask the flyers announcing the event. The flyers, on display at a table in town hall on Tuesday, have both the township's emblem and Raritan Headwaters' logo.

Even if politics had nothing to do with Shepherd's decision, groundwater contamination is a touchy subject in Roxbury due to the presence in the township of the former Fenimore landfill. The main source of Fenimore-related grief for town officials – noxious hydrogen sulfide odors that blanketed the town in 2013 – is no longer happening, but the landfill remains a concern for some.

Groundwater tests have shown the old dump could be dripping carcinogens and other pollutants into the aquifer. However, township officials say wells in the town, even those near the landfill, are showing no sign of contamination.

Despite that, it’s unlikely an event that brings to mind Fenimore in any way would be viewed as a good thing by those seeking re-election on the council, especially an event less than a month before Election Day. Seeking re-election in November are Crowley, Roxbury Councilman Jim Rilee and DeFillippo, all Republicans, who hope to be returned to their 4-year, at-large seats.

They are being challenged by Democrat Lawrence Jones of Ledgewood.

Another member of the GOP, recently appointed Roxbury Councilwoman Jaki Albrecht, will also be on the November ballot hoping to fill out the remaining two years of retired former Roxbury Councilman Gary Behrens. She is being challenged by Democrat Sean Cope of Succasunna.In the past, Roxbury officials were not particularly happy with Raritan Headwaters. The group, in 2015, directly blamed Fenimore for a decline in the cleanliness of Ledgewood Brook.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Roxbury

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_afd0d9e1c3acce03b12c_beer_and_donuts

Wed, April 25, 7:00 PM

Circle Bowl and Entertainment, Ledgewood

Devils Backbone Beer and Donuts!

Food & Drink

Carousel_image_a564abd6d49c88fd33f4_eat_drink_play

Thu, April 26, 7:00 PM

Circle Bowl and Entertainment, Ledgewood

Pallet Paint Night!

Arts & Entertainment

Carousel_image_7e1d6951ac6ba3dcdcb0_deer

Fri, April 27, 6:00 PM

VFW Post 2833, Kenvil

VFW Post 2833 Venison Dinner

Food & Drink

Sat, April 28, 11:00 AM

Horseshoe Lake Park, Succasunna

The Onyx & Breezy Foundation 3rd Annual Memorial ...

Giving Back

Columns

Peyton's Pointers for Safer Driving

Many customers ask my advice for ways to add more years of life to their vehicles. Here are a few pointers from my 35 years of experience in the auto repair industry, as well as some tips to keep you safer on the road.  

1.    Pull Through a Parking Spot.  Pull through to the other side of a parking space so your vehicle faces forward out ...

Getting it Right From the Start; Roxbury Realtor Bob Idakaar

ROXBURY, NJ – Twenty years ago this month, Bob Idakaar experienced an unprofessional real estate agent. That’s when he decided to be a good one.

Idakaar, a lifelong Succasunna resident and TAPinto Roxbury sponsor, bought his fifth home in July 1997. A big event, one that could have been joyous, ended up being stressful and unenjoyable.

“I had a bad experience,” he ...

Roxbury Diner: Homespun Hospitality Through Thick and Thin

ROXBURY, NJ – Roxbury was being buried in snow March 14 and most businesses were closed. Not Roxbury Diner.

Roxbury Diner isn’t like most businesses.For co-owner Jimmy Dontas, a snowstorm – even a blizzard – isn’t a reason to suspend operations. Instead, it’s a call to action.

To many in town, Roxbury Diner – a TAPinto Roxbury sponsor – is ...

It Began With Filling Your Tank; Now They Fix Your Grandson’s Car

When we drive east on Route 10 through Roxbury, many of us might remember a Shell station at the Randolph border next to the golf range. It was in that station that Nancy and Peyton Knight began their long history of auto repair in the township.

That was 1983 and soon the Knights’ business grew and expanded. The humble gas station gradually morphed into a state-of-the-art ...

Orthopedic Urgent Care in Roxbury - Open Late and on Weekends

ROXBURY, NJ – It’s a pleasant Sunday morning, you’re playing volleyball in the back yard with the kids and – forgetting you’re not 17 anymore – you jump up to smack that ball.

Instead of feeling the satisfaction of an unanswered spike, you feel the stinging pain of a wounded ankle.

The only good thing about this scenario is that you live in Roxbury. That ...

Love of His Hometown Drives Roxbury Realtor Ted Miller II

ROXBURY, N.J. – Most local real estate agents can tell you what houses are for sale in Roxbury. Ted Miller can probably tell you what was there before the houses were built. 

Miller, a TAPinto Roxbury sponsor, grew up in the township and has watched it change from bucolic to bustling. The son of a local Realtor, ...

Three Sons at His Side, John Klein Makes Plumbing a Family Affair

ROXBURY, N.J. - Running water and a warm house during winter months are some of the most important amenities we enjoy -- and often take for granted -- in our homes.

With John Klein Plumbing & Heating, a TAPinto Roxbury sponsor, residents of Roxbury (and beyond) have a father-and-sons company they count on for reliable plumbing and heating services to keep the ...

Letters to TAPinto Roxbury

St. Therese K of C Says 'Thanks Roxbury'

April 20, 2018

Dear Editor,

St Therese Knights of Columbus Council #6320 would like to extend a heartfelt THANK YOU to the residents of Roxbury and its surrounding communities for their continued support of our annual Citizens with Developmental Disabilities Drive held April 13-15.

Your generosity enabled us to raise $4,700 which will go to support the missions of the local Department for Persons with ...

Roxbury School Board Statement Inaccurate and Misleading

Dear Editor,

I am writing in response to the Roxbury Board of Education’s April 11 online news release regarding the status of negotiations with the Roxbury Education Association (REA). 

To say we are disappointed by this piece of fiction, written by what can only be described as selective memory on their part, is putting it mildly.  It is inaccurate, misleading, and a ...

Roxbury Golf Management Student Brian Quilty Honored at Coastal Carolina

March 1, 2018

CONWAY, SC -- Brian Quilty of Succasunna, is among the 106 Professional Golf Management students at Coastal Carolina University with a 3.0 GPA or higher. A 2.0 GPA is required to remain enrolled in the program.

"Our PGA Golf Management Program students take their academics seriously and are committed to performing at a high level," said Will Mann, PGA, director of the ...

Student from Succasunna Makes RIT Dean's List

ROCHESTER, NY -- Joelle Marston of Succasunna, who is in the environmental sustainability, health and safety program, made the Dean's List for the fall semester at Rochester Institute of Technology.

Degree-seeking undergraduate students are eligible for Dean's List if their term GPA is greater than or equal to 3.400; they do not have any grades of "Incomplete", "D" ...

Two From Roxbury Area Make Loyola Dean's List

BALTIMORE, MD -- Two students from the Roxbury area made the Loyola University fall 2017 Dean's List.

In order to qualify for the Dean's List at Loyola, a student must achieve a minimum QPA of at least 3.500 for the term, provided that, in the term they have successfully completed courses totaling a minimum of 15 credits.

The following local students have achieved this ...

Three from Roxbury Area Make James Madison Dean's List

HARRISONBURG, VA -- James Madison University is pleased to announce the following students made the dean's list for the fall 2017 semester:

Jordan Israel Taylor of Flanders .

Nicolette Thorkildsen of Flanders .

Olivia J Viparina of Ledgewood .

Students who earn dean's list honors must carry at least 12 graded credit hours and earn a GPA of between 3.5 and 3.899.

Totaro Makes Hofstra Dean's List

HEMPSTEAD, NY -- Julia Totaro of Mt. Arlington excelled during the Fall 2017 semester, achieving a GPA of at least 3.5 to earn a spot on the Hofstra University Dean's List.

Roxbury Area Students Named to the Marist College Dean's List

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY -- The following local students have been named to the Marist College Dean's List for the Fall 2017 semester:

Mariah Christian of Flanders is a member of the Class of 2018 and is majoring in Communication.

Jenna Ficula of Flanders is a member of the Class of 2019 and is majoring in Computer Science.

Erika Hofgesang of Kenvil, is a member of the Class of ...

Press Releases

MWBI Music Festival At Roxbury, April 21

April 12, 2018

ROXBURY, NJ - Roxbury High School, Music for All, and the Roxbury Band Parents Association (RHSBPA) are pleased and proud to announce the Fifth Annual Metropolitan Wind Band Invitational (MWBI) Saturday, April 21 in the Roxbury High School Auditorium, 1 Bryant Drive, in Succasunna, NJ.

This all-day music festival will be filled with 18 performances by several of the regions most ...