By: Chris Concannon
Gloucester City News
Two upcoming roadway projects were top discussion items, at the July 28th Council Meeting in Bellmawr.
Mayor Frank Filipek stated the widening of Benigno Boulevard at the Black Horse Pike, along with work planned for West Browning Road (from Belmont Avenue to Lewis Avenue) were ongoing, but he did not want the two to conflict.
At a recent County Town Meeting, Freeholder Ian Leonard stated the Browning Road project, which will involve milling and re-surfacing, should begin in or around late August.
In Committee reports, John Bollinger stated the Police Department received two (2) new patrol cars, both of which are already in service.
Lou Di Angelo commented on the recent County playground grant.
He also touched on the summer program, adding a second wave of teen workers was beginning.
The Mayor, prefacing that he had bad news, reluctantly stated that County taxes went up by $ 7 cents.
A very vocal public portion led off with resident Louise Fanneman voicing her concerns over traffic issues in and around Market Street.
She suggested posting not only a four (4) way stop at Park Drive and Market, but also a three (3) way stop at Adams Avenue and Market.
Councilman Bollinger informed her that not only would they need a majority of residents in favor; it was also a Police Department matter, as they have the authority in these situations.
He also informed her that they need State D.O.T. approval.
A number of localized streets will also be addressed, following the receipt of a CDBG block grant from the County, in excess of $50 thousand.
Mrs. Fanneman ended her comments by noting the absence of these measures pose a danger to children playing in those areas.
Robert Heckman, a perennial visitor to Council meetings, made his issues known to Mayor and Council, over a pit behind Bellmawr Storage on Kings Highway.
The property is reportedly owned by former Brooklawn Mayor John Soubassis.
Heckman said the pit has yet to be completed, hence his chief complaint.
In suggesting the possibility of erecting a retaining wall, he added that for all his related concerns, nothing ever gets done.
The Mayor informed him he would ask the Code Enforcement Official to look into the situation on Monday (August 1st).
Resident Kathy Sarlo, local petition in hand, asked what of the unsightly conditions at the former IGA market site.
Filipek noted that a union is taking the Borough to court, in an effort to block further construction of a new Bottom Dollar Food Market.
Whereas the chain, owned by southern U.S. based Food Lion, would use union workers to build the structures, the store itself would be staffed by non-union employees.
Over 100 jobs could be gained or never created, pending the outcome of a judge’s decision, believed to be rendered sometime in October of this year.
Ann Forline then asked if the Borough could implement ID’s for sports coaches in town, relative to Megan’s Law certification.
She noted seeing such ID badges at the Gloucester City Softball Tournament, which she covered for the Gloucester City News.
Filipek asked her if she would be interested in joining an advisory board, if one were created.
In his closing comments, he stated that Bellmawr’s National Night Out would be held Tuesday August 2nd, at the Rec Centre on Creek Road.
Several ordinances were passed and/or introduced, and included:
Ordinance #05:10-11 passed, regarding the 2011 salary ordinance.
Ordinance #06:11-11 also passed, involving the re-mount and re-chassis of a Bellmawr Fire Department (BFD) ambulance. $80 thousand was appropriated for the work;
The following ordinances were introduced for the first time:
Ordinance #07:13-11, creating the position of Fire Prevention Specialist;
Ordinance #07:14-11, for enforcement of the New Jersey Uniform Fire Safety Code;
Ordinance #07:15-11, establishing dog park rules.
Further information or questions may be obtained by contact Borough Hall, at (856) 933-1313, or on the web, at www.bellmawr.com.
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