HAPPY ANNIVERSARY TO US!-Five years ago today, (August 1, 2006) ClearysNoteBook/CNBNews was officially launched. What started out as a lark has grown into a 24- hour/7 days a week daily news blog. Over the course of these five years we have collected 15,559 posts/articles, 18,350 comments and thousands of photos. We owe all our success to our 3000 a day readers. Thank you to our columnists, Hank Miller, sports writer Raymond Rolak, Dawn Watson, and the late Dan Watson who passed away June 25, Wil Levins and Mark Matthews. I am also grateful to my lifelong companion, friend and wife Connie, who proofreads my weekly columns and keeps me straight when I go astray. Special thanks to Bruce and Jill Darrow who helped us get started in 2006 and continue to provide us with news tips. Also thanks to Rich Luongo, Bill Bates, Steve Skipton, and Anthony Wojtkowiak for their support. Finally, thank you to all those who take the time to post their comments. We appreciate your support and your criticism. ~Bill Cleary
Cheerleaders Gentlemen Club, Rt. 130 and Klemm Avenue, will pay no real estate taxes to the City of Gloucester City for nine years as a result of a recent court decision. The settlement also calls for the City to pay $35,000 to MAG entertainment who operates the nude dance club. Records show the Club pays $16,400 annually in property taxes. The total value of the settlement is estimated at more than $180,000. As a result of the favorable ruling, the club owners could have made the City pay it’s $157,000 legal fees. By giving the Club the nine year tax break the City avoided having to make a lump sum payment to the owners.
The arrangement calls for MAG entertainment to upgrade the Route 130 property, adding a deck and exterior improvements. They must also erect a fence as a buffer between its site and nearby homes. Their property is located next to Chatham Square Apartments, a complex the city purchased for $4.1 million in 2007. The City is trying to redevelop the apartments into townhouses.
The recent decision was handed down by U.S. District Judge Robert Kugler who ruled the City violated the Club’s constitutional rights when it tried to shut-it down last year.
LOCAL ARTISTS AWARDED CONTRACT-Stockton’s Board of Trustees this month approved a $36,000 contract with the South Jersey Museum of Curiosities in Gloucester City, Camden County, for five wood carvings of Pinelands creatures. The South Jersey Museum of Curiosities, (SJMOC LLP), was founded by artists Debra Sachs and Marilyn Keating to facilitate their growing collaborative and public art projects. To view their work visit http://www.sjmoc.com/
MILITARY WITHDRAWAL FROM IRAQ IN JEOPARDY?- Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction Stuart W. Bowen Jr., states in a recent report that the resurgence in violence by Shiite militia has made Iraq more dangerous now than it was just a year ago. The report cited the deaths of 15 U.S. soldiers in June, the bloodiest month for the U.S. military in Iraq in two years.
In a July 30 Associated Press article Bowen accused the U.S. military of glossing over Iraq's instability, noting a statement in late May by the U.S. military that described Iraq's security trends as "very, very positive" _ but only when compared to 2007, when the country was on the brink of civil war. In contrast, Bowen talked of "the very real fragility" of national security in Iraq today.
Whether or not Bowden’s report will have any impact on the United States military’s plan to withdraw from Iraq at the end of this year remains to be seen.
Most will agree the time to bring the troops home is long overdue. The latest figures released show 4,442 soldiers have died fighting in Iraq while 1, 584 soldiers have died in Afghanistan. Over 33,000 soldiers have been injured in the Iraq War since it began in 2003. The United States has spent trillions of dollars on this War. It is time for the Iraqi people to step up to the plate so to speak. Bring our troops home.
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