WEST CALDWELL, NJ — New and incoming residents of West Caldwell were invited to the municipal building on Tuesday for a Newcomers’ Open House hosted by the mayor and council and several other community leaders.
Following the regular meeting of the township council, elected township officials, members of the local board of education and most of the township department heads donned nametags in order to greet residents and answer any questions they may have about their new community. Since this was the first event of this nature in a few years, residents who have moved to West Caldwell as far back as three years ago were invited to participate.
“We stopped doing it because the post-2008 real estate market really slowed down, so we weren’t getting a lot of newcomers,” said West Caldwell Mayor Joseph Tempesta. “Now it’s starting to pick up again, so we’re very happy that we have about 30-something signed up for tonight.”
Each council member formally introduced his or herself and his or her responsibilities within the township. All department heads, including the fire and police departments, the West Essex First Aid Squad, the West Caldwell Public Library, the department of public works, the recreation department and more were also introduced and remained on hand throughout the evening.
Tempesta said the main goal of the event was to “put a name with a face, so if they have any specific questions or issues, they can do it in a nice social atmosphere.”
“You’ve chosen a very nice town and community to live in,” said Tempesta, who has served as mayor for 19 of the nearly 50 years he has been a resident of West Caldwell. “Everyone who’s anybody and important for you to speak to or meet tonight on any issues you might have, they’re in the room. And if somebody isn’t or you need to get some information and you can’t, just ask us and we’ll get back to you.”
In addition to some refreshments, the room was set up with tables that featured detailed information about many of the township’s departments and volunteer organizations as well as upcoming events within both West Caldwell and the county.
The mayor said he was enthusiastic that the governing body was once again able to provide this opportunity for the township’s newest residents to mingle.