WAYNE, NJ – During Mayor Chris Vergano’s State of the Township address at the 2020 Reorganization meeting, Vergano said this: “Speeding continues to be the number one complaint we receive from residents. I’ve said this many times in the past.”
Though high property taxes are something that people complain about, it’s speeding that has residents calling the Mayor’s office. Vergano spoke of how the Township is handling the problem.
“As of November 30, 2019, the one-hundred and fourteen members of the Wayne Police Department have issued 15,328 tickets.
15,328 tickets in an eleven-month period.
That is 1,393.45 speeding tickets issued per month, and doesn't count warnings that are issued.
“We continue to run radar and catch people speeding in our residential neighborhoods,” said Vergano.
Later in the meeting, during the public comments portion, Wayne Resident John Pennington, who lives in the Pines Lake area, came to the podium to compliment the Wayne Police Department saying: “The police in this township are incredibly responsive.”
Pennington then told a story about his interaction with an officer who was in the Pines Lake area to help stop speeding. The officer said: “Your neighbors are going to ask me to leave soon because I’m going to start issuing tickets.” Pennington told the officer that he and his neighbors were happy that he was there.
Vergano responded to Pennington’s comments in his usual dry tone. “Most interesting, when we get complaints from neighbors, and typically it’s the lake communities. It’s Lion’s Head Lake, it’s Pines Lake and it’s Packanack,” said Vergano. “We send the police out in marked cars and unmarked cars, and they run radar. And, do you know who we catch? We catch the people who live in Pines Lake, Lion’s Head Lake and Packanack Lake.” This was met with laughter from the audience.
Vergano continued: “And then they call me and say, ‘You know I got a ticket for speeding.’ And my answer is, ‘Slow down.’”
“So we try to enforce speeding laws, and the only way we can really do that is to start by issuing tickets,” said Vergano. “And, you heard me before say that we issued over 15,000 tickets. That’s a lot. Our police are out there being proactive. We’ve made a great effort to slow people down. We have a lot of walkers in the lake communities, and kids on bikes, and older walkers (like me). So, we have made an effort.”
The mayor ended by making a public service announcement: “Please lock your cars at night. We don’t live in Mayberry, we live in Wayne, New Jersey. You need to lock your car. And, if you’re really crazy, you leave your keys in the car; and your garage door opener. So, what can happen? They’ll take your garage door opener and the next day when you leave for work, they’ll have an instant way to get into your house.”
“So, stop speeding and lock your cars and I think things will be a lot better,” finished Vergano.