School district will hold elections April 16
The number of school districts with April school elections has dwindled to 41, as more than 500 school districts in New Jersey will hold their elections in November instead.
Thirty-three communities opted to move their elections to November starting in 2013, the New Jersey School Boards Association reported on Wednesday, March 6. The Hudson County districts conducting school elections on April 16 are: North Bergen, Secaucus, and Weehawken.
In January 2012, a new law gave local boards of education, municipal governing bodies or voters the option to move the annual school election from April to the November General Election. In 2012, 468 school districts conducted November elections. This year, the number of districts with November elections will increase to 501.
The law was designed to increase participation in the non-partisan school board elections, which typically attracted about 15 percent of registered voters each April. It provides communities with two additional incentives to move their school elections to November.
School boards with November elections do not have to submit their proposed base budgets to voters, as long as the budget remains at or below the state’s 2-percent tax levy cap. Supporters of the November election option cite the savings made possible by eliminating the additional election in April. Prior to the law’s enactment, the bill’s sponsors estimated the statewide cost of the April school elections at more than $7 million.
‘Kids’ Theme Nights’
Mayor Michael Gonnelli and the Town Council present Kids’ Theme Nights at the Recreation Center located at 1200 Koelle Blvd. On Sunday, March 17, St. Patrick’s Day will be celebrated from 5 to 8 p.m. and refreshments will be served.
Easter bunny and egg hunt
Residents can come get keepsake family photos with Easter Bunny on Tuesday, March 19 from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Gazebo in Plaza Center. The keepsakes will be 4 by 6 for $8 with all the proceeds going to the “Secaucus Emergency Fund.”
The sophomore class of 2015, in conjunction with Mayor Michael Gonnelli and the Town Council, invite you to Breakfast with Easter Bunny which will be followed by the Annual Town Egg Hunt. The breakfast will be held on Saturday, March 23 from 9 to 11 a.m. in the Secaucus High School gymnasium. Admission will be $5 and children under 2 years of age are free. Guests will have breakfast, do crafts, play games, indulge in raffles along with many other festivities.
Secaucus seniors are invited to a Fish Fry at Bone Fish Grill on Friday, March 22 at 12:30 p.m. Those interested are urged to call (201) 865-4422 for reservations.
Area man missing since March 6
Police are searching for missing person Marco Bruno Garcia, 34, from North Bergen. A missing poster is hanging in Mario's Pizza on Eighth Street in Hoboken, where Garcia works.
North Bergen Police Sgt. Bronson Justino said Wednesday that before he disappeared, Garcia had been discussing with his family that he wanted to go back to Mexico, where he is from. However, Justino said that no one from his family in Mexico has heard from him.
“Now they’re trying to figure out where he is, because he left his cell phone, his passport and another type of ID,” said Justino. “It didn’t look like he packed up and left.”
Garcia was last seen on March 6.
Anyone with information about Garcia’s whereabouts is asked to contact the North Bergen Police Department at (201) 392-2100.
New Jersey Meadowlands Commission scheduled events
The Third-Tuesday-of-the-Month Bird Walk will be on Tuesday, March 19 from 10 a.m. to noon. Guests will celebrate the arrival of spring a day early with this free Harrier Meadow spring bird walk in North Arlington. The walk will go around the 70-acre natural area that is normally closed to the public and look for ospreys, killdeer and other spring arrivals, plus lingering winter waterfowl. The walk starts at 10 a.m. at Harrier Meadow, on Disposal Road near Schuyler Avenue. (Note: There may be construction vehicles on Valley Brook Avenue, so Harrier Meadow may be best reached by Schuyler Avenue). The walk is run by the New Jersey Meadowlands Commission and the Bergen County Audubon Society.
For last minute updates visit meadowblog.net. Guests will have to sign a standard liability release which is good for all NJMC/BCAS events throughout the year. To RSVP, contact Don Torino of the BCAS at email@example.com or call (201)230-4983.
Out of This Solar System – Planets Orbiting Stars will be on Wednesday, March 20 from 2 to 3 p.m. which is open to all ages. Following a brief, non-technical overview of our own solar system, Dr. John Sloan, director of the NJMC William McDowell Observatory, will discuss new and exciting findings about planets orbiting other starts known as extrasolar plantets, or exoplanets. Guests will examine some of the strange worlds beyond our solar system and explore whether they can support life. Admission is $5 and $4 for MEC members. This event will be held at Meadowlands Environment Center at Two DeKorte Park Plaza in Lyndhurst.
For more information call (201) 460-8300 or visit www.njmeadowlands.gov/ec.
Signs of Spring: Watercolor Painting for Kids is on Saturday, March 23 from 1 to 3 p.m. for ages 6 through 12 accompanied by an adult. If you have a “budding” artist in your family then this is their event. Kids are invited to celebrate the arrival of the new season by using watercolor pencils to both draw and paint images of DeKorte Park and the signs of spring. Guests will take home art and supplies which are included. Admission is $10 per child and $9 for MEC members. It will be held at Meadowlands Environment Center on Two DeKorte Park Plaza in Lyndhurst.
For more information call (201) 460-8300 or visit www.njmeadowlands.gov/ec.
If you live in Secaucus and are a painter, photographer, mixed media artist, sculptor or have any other artistic abilities, Mayor Michael Gonnelli and the Town Council would like to highlight your talent. All work will be viewed, selected by a jury, and received at The Town Hall by Thursday, April 11. The artist’s reception will be held on Wednesday, April 17 at 7 p.m.
For more information contact Lee Penna at (201) 330-2083 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Local blood bank seeking volunteers to work drives
New Jersey Blood Services, a division of New York Blood Center, which supplies blood products and services to 60 hospitals throughout the state, is in need of volunteers at blood drives. The blood service volunteer is an integral member of the collection team whose task it is assist donors with registration, escorting and canteen duties, and to watch for post donation reactions. Volunteers should have the ability to relate to the public, be able to perform different jobs as needed and have the willingness to follow the rules.
For additional information contact, Manager of Community Relations, R. Jan Zepka at (732) 616-8741 or email@example.com.
Anti-drug group seeking commercial ideas from middle schoolers
Calling all future movie writers and producers! The Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey is calling on New Jersey middle school students to write, star in and produce a television commercial with a substance abuse prevention message for their peers by entering the 14th Annual Middle School Public Service Announcement Challenge (MSPSA).
Students in the 6th, 7th, or 8th grade are invited to create a 30-second television Public Service Announcement (PSA) script designed to get a substance abuse prevention message out to their peers.
“The students who submit the winning script not only write the 30-second PSA, but produce, edit, and star in the spot that is often filmed at their school,” said media director Angela Conover. Each school can enter multiple teams, but each team may only submit one PSA.
All submissions must be received by Friday, April 19.
For additional information contact (973) 467-2100, ext. 11, or visit: DrugFreeNJ.org.
Volunteer to help Hudson Hospice
Hudson Hospice announced its spring training hospice course this week for volunteers interested in making a difference in the lives of the terminally ill and their families. The six-week course will train volunteers to work in companionship roles, provide emotional support, run errands and provide telephone reassurance to families and patients. The course, held at Hudson Hospice’s Jersey City office, located at 93 Clerk St., will be offered on Tuesday mornings from 10 a.m. to noon, or Tuesday nights from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Classes will start April 9 and conclude on May 28.
For more information, contact Sister Carol Van Billiard at (201) 433-6225.