Government

Public Outbursts Overshadow Westfield Town Council Meeting Over Gun Control, HAWK Light Issues

9ed7bce6ace71e028225_102_0741.JPG
The American Planning Association recognized Downtown Westfield as one of its “Great Places in New Jersey.” Here, Jessica Giorgianni presents the award to Mayor Andy Skibitsky. Center; Stephanie Walsh. Credits: Alexandria Addesso
05eeedf2e218f35d9a2f_102_0742.JPG
Mayor Skibitsky, Stephanie Walsh and Jessica Giorgianni. Credits: Alexandria Addesso
5e4945214e84c68f677f_102_0746.JPG
From left to right: James Foerst, Dave Haas, Jo Ann Neylan Credits: Alexandria Addesso
529f48ac716149dd213d_102_0744.JPG
Frank Arena(left) and Mayor Skibitsky (right) Credits: Alexandria Addesso
8122a1c13920ad693785_102_0753.JPG
Credits: Alexandria Addesso
9ed7bce6ace71e028225_102_0741.JPG

WESTFIELD, NJ -- The recurring back-and-forth between residents against the HAWK light and the town council and their supporters had a political twist at the Oct. 22 meeting, which Mayor Skibitsky attributed to this being the last public meeting before the election on Nov. 5.

Those who opposed the light expressed nothing but negativity towards the mayor (although they all admitted to voting for him in the last election) and most of the council except for Dave Haas, whom they had all stated was their only ally and who is now running against Skibitsky.

“He [Haas] has the courage to speak his mind,” said resident Maria Carluccio, “and not be a little puppet.”

Sign Up for E-News

Two residents who found the HAWK light to be no safety risk praised the mayor and the council. Resident Tony Del Duca spoke passionately against those citizens who demanded action be taken about the light and stated that he had to be escorted to his car by an officer after speaking his mind at the last council meeting he attended.

Responses from the audience to council comments, which is not an allotted practice at council meetings, went on for the remainder of the meeting, as well as applause.

“This isn’t the Jerry Springer Show,” said councilman Sam Della Fera in response to the clapping.

Resident Karen Egert’s troubles with Skibitsky went beyond the HAWK light or the purchase of the mobile command center, which was also brought up. Egert is a member of the organization New Jersey Residents Against Gun Violence and was upset that the mayor would not join the Mayors Against Illegal Guns group, nor was he advocating to make background checks to purchase guns a must.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GsDQpRhuWZA&feature=youtu.be

Skibitsky countered by reading a letter submitted by Egert to the Westfield Leader in which she applauded his anti-gun efforts.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wf9KygI8YIE

At one point Councilman James Foerst suggested adjourning the meeting early due to commotion from the crowd, but the rest of meeting's business was conculded.

The arguments during the meeting overshadowed its upbeat beginning, during which the American Planning Association recognized Downtown Westfield as one of its “Great Places in New Jersey.”

“These are the places people want to be in,” said Jessica Giorgianni of the APA. “You know it when you’re there.”

At the end of the meeting, Councilman Foerst reminded the public that some voting places have been changed.

“Please check your ballot to make sure your voting place has not changed,” said Foerst.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Westfield

Westfield Firefighters Give Assist at Overnight House Fire in Garwood

July 12, 2018

GARWOOD, NJ - The Westfield and Clark fire departments were on hand to assist at a house fire early Thursday morning in Garwood.  The fire was in the upper levels of a vacant home on Willow Avenue, according to officials.

Clark Fire Chief Frank Cerasa confirmed that five Clark firefighters took one engine to the site. One witness reported seeing emergency responders from ...

Change The Early Morning Timing on Central Ave. Traffic Light

July 12, 2018

In connection with asking Union County to review the signal timing, PLEASE also consider the timing early in the morning. I frequently am heading south on Central to Metropark Station to catch the 6 a.m. train. Whenever I am at the intersection prior to 5:30 a.m., the timing is such that a green light (going south) lasts for less than the amount of time it takes to get one car through the ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_ba9c4627da28fb176206_mini_magick20180618-30381-9jxo6y

Tue, July 17, 6:00 PM

Westfield Presbyterian Church, Westfield

Youth Mental Health First Aid

Education Health & Wellness

Carousel_image_ba183db7fcc1f0f9f274_1d4v9034a

Wed, July 18

Westfield Area YMCA, Westfield

Westfield Area YMCA Wellness Wednesdays

Health & Wellness

Carousel_image_6bb3683d2a03ed40d943_scan0046

Thu, July 19, 7:30 PM

Mindowaskin Park, Westfield

Free Swing Band Concert in Mindowaskin Park

Arts & Entertainment

Westfield Police Blotter: Car Scratchings, Car Burglaries Continue & More

July 11, 2018

July 2, 2018 11:37 p.m.

Chad Doriral, age 32, of Brooklyn, NY was arrested for possession of CDS pursuant to a motor vehicle stop. Subject was processed and released on summons.

July 3, 2018 11:08 p.m.

Divine Kennedy, age 19, of Newark, NJ was arrested on the strength of an outstanding warrant for his arrest from Westfield Municipal Court in the amount of $1,000.00. Further investigation ...

Echo Lake Church Vacation Bible School

July 16, 2018

The Echo Lake Church of Christ at 419 Springfield Ave., Westfield is sponsoring its annual free Vacation Bible School on Saturday, Aug. 18 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the church.

The theme  of this one day event is "Discovering the Treasures of Jesus." Classes for grades K-12 and adults will be available. The program will consist of Bible lessons, singing, crafts,and ...

Big Changes in Store for New Jersey’s Employers and Employees

Big changes are in store for New Jersey’s workplaces, with dramatic legislation aimed at improving conditions for New Jersey’s workers. These changes include the enactment of New Jersey’s Equal Pay Act, a new law to help the unemployed, and passage of New Jersey’s Paid Sick Leave Act. Most likely one or all these laws will impact you or someone in your family.

New ...

Understand NJ's Shared Responsibility Act

Last year, the President signed legislation that repealed the “penalty tax” for not having health insurance for tax years beginning on or after Jan. 1, 2019.

 

On May 31, Governor Murphy signed into law the “New Jersey Health Insurance Market Preservation Act,” which establishes a “shared responsibility tax” for state residents without ...

5 Simple Ways to Save Water this Summer

According to the L.A. Times, the average American uses an estimated 98 gallons of water EACH day.  

Here are five simple ways you can save water, to help you conserve water this summer and take some pressure off of your drains.

1. Unless you are using it, turn the faucet off. How many of us still leave the water running while we shave or brush our teeth?According to ...

26 Homes Sold July 8-15 in Westfield and Surrounding Towns

There were 26 homes sold between July 8 and July 15 in Westfield, Scotch Plains, Fanwood, Cranford and Mountainside`

TOWN          ADDRESS    STYLE            RMS   BRS BTH   GAR   Sale Price

Cranford  115  Bryant Ave ...

Dog Found in Garwood

UPDATE: Reunited with owner.

ORIGINAL POST: Dog found on Pine Avenue in Garwood. He was given food and water. Garwood police now has him. Sweet and friendly. Contact the Garwood Police Department.

It's Not What You Are Eating, It's What's Eating You

EMOTIONAL EATING: FEEDING YOUR FEELINGS

Emotional eating can be described as episodes of binge-eating, grazing and/or eating when not hungry to soothe feelings. Emotional eaters have a pattern of eating to cope with stress, emotional conflicts and problems of daily life.

Emotional eating is eating for reasons other than hunger. Instead of physical symptoms initiating the eating, ...

What Is Your Bottom Line?

This week's Parshah (Torah reading) is the Parshah of Pinchas the Zealot: the courageous young priest who stood up against idolatry and immorality and, in the end, saved Israel from a devastating plague.

While Pinchas' radical response made him a hero worthy of having a Torah section named after him, we wouldn't necessarily suggest to our children ...

'Servant of Two Masters' exudes foolish fun

‘Servant of Two Masters’ makes for foolish, frivolous fun

By Liz Keill

MADISON, NJ –Carlo Goldoni’s “The Servant of Two Masters,” in a rousing translation and adaptation by Bonnie J. Monte, has the outdoor audience at The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey laughing and clapping all the way through.

The yearly production, held at the amphitheatre on the ...

Commencement Collapse

July 1, 2018

Along with hundreds of parents in Westfield, my sons just graduated from high school (congratulations all!). It’s a funny thing being on the inside, being one of the moms who’s actually got kids in the flowy gowns. It’s a completely different vantage point than the one I’m used to; on many graduations past, I’ve felt deep joy while driving on Grove and seeing the ...

Westfield H.S. Students Receive Honorable Mention in NYT Podcast Contest

WESTFIELD, NJ — A podcast created by a group of Westfield High School students received an Honorable Mention in a first-ever podcast contest by the New York Times.

"By way of background, student groups in our Humanities class worked tirelessly on researching one of seven assigned renaissances and created a podcast that explored a particular innovation or innovator from the ...

Westfield Area YMCA: Take Swim Lessions This Summer

The Westfield Area YMCA is providing a free one-week guest pass to non-members which will also enable access to purchase a week of swim lessons at full member rates during the summer.  The one-week guest pass includes use of the Y’s fitness facilities, land and water group exercise classes and open gym/swim.

“Our goal is to have people of all ages and skill levels grow to ...

Woman Struck by Car in Bridgewater Mall Parking Lot Dies

July 12, 2018

Bridgewater, NJ - A Bedminster woman has died from her injuries after she was struck by a car in the parking lot of the Bridgewater Commons Mall Monday.

Marion Kelley, 62, was struck by a vehicle while walking in lot four near the Macy's merchandise pick up area at around 3:20 p.m. Monday.

The 2017 Mazda was driven by Chinmayi Parikh, 33, of Piscataway.

The crash is still being ...

Obituaries

Eric Lieberman, 47, of Scotch Plains, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly Tuesday, May 22, 2018 ...
Read more