NEWS, SPORTS, COMMENTARY, POLITICS for Gloucester City and the Surrounding Areas of South Jersey and Philadelphia

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What's Up with Ott's? Local Businessman Always Thinking, Public Sector Cutbacks


The original plans called for the completion of the restaurant in  2012. Then the plans called for completion by summer of 2013. The developers proposed a bigger project so those plans were scrapped. The latest drawings for the project haven't been released.  
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WHAT'S UP WITH OTTS ON THE WATERFRONT?--We have been in touch WhatsUpDocthis week with Don Bigley and Jeffrey Lucas, two of the principal investors of the proposed "Ott's on the Waterfront Restaurant"  for information on the progress of the project, which is to be built on Freedom Pier in Gloucester City.

Some of the questions we asked


 Has construction drawings been completed?

 How many square feet is the restaurant?

What is the estimated cost for this project?

 Is funding for construction in place?

 The name of the investors?

 Because of the recession/the tight construction market, has it been difficult to find investors?

 What is the projected bidding date?

 When do you expect construction to begin....sometime soon or will it be 2014 now?

You have built several restaurants, is Ott’s on the Waterfront any different from the other restaurants you have constructed or is this project more demanding? If so, what specifically has been the most arduous task?

 Mr. Lucas response, “We are working on plans, funding etc.  Let's talk more at the end of September.  We are very excited about the progress we are making.” 


ANOTHER REPEAT!---Have you wondered what happened to the restaurant that was expected to be built in the spring of 2012 at Freedom Pier in Gloucester City? Come to find out that idea has been scrapped and a new proposal has been submitted by Don Bigley, who was awarded the contract by the city in 2011. His latest proposal will double the size of this operation and will include a banquet facility. Construction of the $8 million project, according to the city, will start sometime this year. Under this plan the project will be built with 90 percent private funds and 10 percent public funds. Bigley owns Otts Restaurants which are located throughout South Jersey. After waiting 30 years for a restaurant to be constructed, somewhere on the city’s waterfront, most residents, including this reporter, will believe it when they see the finished product, not before. 

EDITOR'S NOTE--As soon as we receive any information on this proposal we will make it public.. ~


A PROGRESSIVE THINKER--Leo Holt, (photo) president of Holt Logistics Corp, Gloucester S_leoholt

City, NJ,  has always had a forward-looking approach to business. In a recent interview with Produce News Holt gave an example of how that rationale has helped him over the years to improve his company.  

Produce News: As part of his Delaware River region operations, Holt runs the Gloucester Marine Terminal. There was an ancient crane that needed to come down to make way for a gleaming new $5 million mobile unit with many times the lifting capacity and much more versatility.

Demolition crews wanted a fortune and a long timetable for the project. Holt instead chose to turn to his best resource: his employees.

He put the word out that he was looking for a plan to bring the crane down. A handful of staffers devised a scenario and took it to the boss. Once the plan was vetted, the crane came down, efficiently, quickly and at a fraction of the projected cost.

“We gave these guys, sort of our MacGyvers, the green light to come up with their own plan and they did that in a way that was driven first by safety and second by efficiency and speed,” Holt said. “As a result we did it in six weeks less time and at less than 25 percent of the projected cost. When all was said and done, we had a clean berth, no damage, everybody was safe and it was a lot of fun. That’s an example of how if you give motivated employees the tools and the open field to run with they’ll do it.” (by Chip Carter | August 05, 2013) 


ImagesMUNICIPAL GOVERNMENTS CUTTING EMPLOYEES--Even though the requirement that employers, including governments, offer full-time employees health coverage does not kick in for 16 months, there are already changes, The Washington Post reports.

The Washington Post: Local Governments Cutting Hours Over Obamacare Costs
Many cash-strapped cities and counties are opting to reduce the number of hours their part-time employees work. Some local officials said the cuts are happening now either because of labor contracts that must be negotiated in advance, or because the local governments worry that employees who work at least 30 hours in the months leading up to the January 2015 implementation date would need to be included in their health-care plans.

Last Tuesday, Middletown Township, N.J. said it would reduce the hours of 25 part-time workers to avoid up to $775,000 in increased annual health-care costs. Earlier this month, Bee County, Tex., said it would limit its part-time workers to 24 hours per week when the new fiscal year starts Oct. 1. 

Last month, department heads in Brevard County, Fla., were told to plan similar cuts in advance of the 2015 deadline. Brevard County Insurance Director Jerry Visco estimated the new mandate would cost the county $10,000 per part-time employee — or $1.38 million a year if all 138 part-time employees who work more than 30 hours a week are covered, he told Florida Today. The Brevard County libraries have already cut hours for 37 employees. (Wilson, 8/22)


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