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PEYTON AND ME MEANDERING Through Brooklawn, Gloucester City, and Westville (Chapter XIV)


William E. Cleary Sr. | CNBNews


CORRECTION/UPDATED: It has been brought to our attention by Police Chief/City Administrator Brian Morrell that he has three and half more years to work before he can retire; that his salary is based on the last year of his employment. Morrell also took exception to our statement that no one could perform two jobs and do them efficiently. Stating, "You do not know what I do or don't do, you just assumed. Why do you continue to bash me?"


Our position remains that no one can perform two jobs, and do them well. And, if we are wrong why have taxpayers been paying different salaries to a police chief and city administrator all these years. That is our opinion, and it is also been the opinion of other people we have spoken with.  We have no personal vendetta against Mr. Morrell and have no reason to "bash" him. In fact, as he mentioned today, recently he helped us with a police matter involving a relative who lives in another county and was having a health issue. It was a police matter; who else would you turn to but your local police chief. At the time we thank him for his assistance as we did again today when we spoke with him. We would feel the same way whether it was him or someone else that was holding down two city jobs. We suggested a study, to see whether we need both titles. And at the same time let's look at other departments to see if the one person for two jobs can be effective. We have been wrong before, if this idea works in other departments we would welcome the local tax savings. 

If Mr. Morrell would like to make a public statement about his daily work schedule laying out all his duties we would gladly publish it. 

~William E. Cleary Sr. 




GLOUCESTER CITY, NJ--Little things like this old United States Postal Service Relay Mailbox left standing for decades rusting away destroys a neighborhood's pride. The box is located in the 200 unit block of Third Street in between Market and Powell Streets. The postal service hasn't used relay boxes like this one for over 50 years if not longer. The city administrator/police chief, Morrell needs to contact the post office and request that it be removed.  Why he is at it he should instruct the City Water Department and have them removed the out-of-service hydrant at the corner of Lane and Little Hunter Streets. That ugly hydrant has been sitting there for over five years.


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Do you think it would be removed if it was sitting in front of Mayor Keating's house or any of the council members' homes?

Maybe Police Chief/City Administrator Morrell is too busy wearing two hats. Did you know he receives a salary of $195,000? Did you know that because of a blunder by former Mayor Spencer, and the present city council, Morrell's salary is listed under his police chief's salary?  As such if he retires tomorrow he will receive his 65 percent plus pension on that number for the rest of his life instead of the police chief's previous salary of $144,000. That is just one of many reasons why your taxes increase every year. The correct way would have been to give him a stipend for being the city administrator, while the council interviewed others for that job. We don't care how skilled you are no one, including Mr. Morrell, can perform two jobs and do them well. Or, maybe we don't need to have a police chief?  Or a city administrator? A study should be done to see if either job is necessary? Doubtful that would ever happen, those in charge don't have a clue on how to run a city.

A  big city election is coming up in November folks, there are actually going to be some choices on the ballot this year. This will be your chance to get rid of some of these 'dust collectors on the city council, the do-nothing's who have been sucking on the taxpayer's teet for decades. Can anyone name one thing the incumbents have done to better our city in all the years they have been in office?


Below, corner of Lane and Thompson Avenues, the tenant or landlord repeatedly places their trash out days before pickup. This eyesore, first appeared Monday night, Labor Day, since trash and recycling pickups are a day behind because of the holiday the loose boxes and garbage have been blowing all over the neighborhood. 


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THE BEAUTIFUL THOMAS WEST PARK--When you are driving through Westville on Route 47 make sure you take a moment and stop at the Thomas West Park. The borough employees have done a fantastic job landscaping this summer. One thing we noticed about the park right away there was no trash laying on the ground. The War Memorials look very nice too. (see below).

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The Borough's 9-11 Memorial will be dedicated on Saturday, September 11, at 8:30 AM. The two pieces of steel obtained from the World Trade site in New York City sit a few yards from the Borough's other monuments shown above. The committee members involved with the 9-11 Memorial are Bruce Nordaby, Donna Moan, Travis Lawrence, and Paul Mailley. Delores Cornell, owner of Cornell Steel, Westville, and her employees donated their time and materials to clean up the steel for the memorial. 




The new 9-11 Monument is just a few yards from the other Memorials that recognize those veterans who died fighting in  World War I,  World War II, Korea,  and Vietnam.




The Rolling Badges Motorcycle Club escorted the two pieces of steel to Westville. Saturday, Mayor Fritz Sims will address the audience and dignitaries. A bell ceremony, playing of the bagpipes and a bugler will be part of the dedication in memory of those who lost their lives on 9-11.



Hannevig and Maude Avenues (Mark Matthews photo for CNBNews)


Brooklawn American Legion Post 72 will join Brooklawn clergy, mayor and council, emergency personnel, and citizens of local communities in commemorating the 20th anniversary of Patriot Day, Saturday, September 11. It begins with a bell ringing followed by a minute of silence during the times of each of the four separate terrorist attacks. The bells will ring at 8:45 AM, 9:03 AM, 9:43 AM, and 10 AM.

The commemoration ceremony at the Brooklawn War Memorial/9-11 Monuments  at Hannevig and Maude Avenues begins at 10 AM and will honor the victims of the attack on the World Trade Center, Pentagon, airline flight takeover, and the military service personnel who have died in the battle against terrorism


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GLOUCESTER CITY RESIDENTS and anyone else can donate their unwanted clothing at the collection box located on Stinsman Avenue in front of the public works compound. 




We visited the Southport area, at Charles and Water Streets, and the first thing we noticed was the work on the caved-in sewer/water pipes, is still ongoing.  The pipes that broke were placed under the Screen Shot 2021-09-10 at 13.46.17street a century ago and were made out of concrete and brick. The contractor has been working on this project since March/April 2021. Gloucester City has numerous streets with similar outdated infrastructure.  Some of them carry both water and sewerage and empty into the Delaware River. If your street has numerous pothole patches most likely the reason is the outdated infrastructure is slowly caving in. If the city had taken the offer made by an area Water Company, the cost for that project along with any other water/sewer breaks would have been the responsibility of the new owner. But since the mayor and council didn't you and I will be stuck with annual increases in our water/sewer bills for years to come.


COULD IT BE, WORK HAS STARTED ON THE SOUTHPORT DEVELOPMENT? (Below) Walking further on Water Street towards the old New Jersey Zinc property we found several piles of red bricks stacked neatly one on top of the other. Whoever dumped the bricks took the time to place each one in a neat pile. So we now have the start of a dump in that area.  When we first saw the bricks we thought that construction was about to begin on Gloucester's Vista project and or the Compost Plant. (We are being fictitious folks?)

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