Fulop administration reorganizes Jersey City Fire Department to cut overtime costs
Mayor Steven M. Fulop and Public Safety Director James Shea announced last week that the administration is restructuring the Jersey City Fire Department into three battalions, a measure that they say will place more firefighters on-duty, provide better services for residents, and significantly reduce overtime costs within the department.
Already this year, the Jersey City Fire Department has used all its budgeted overtime funds, roughly $2.6 million, due to what the administration has called “inefficient staffing,” particularly among the department’s captains.
The administration said Wednesday that the restructuring will save between $750,000 and $1 million.
The Fire Department currently has 22 companies that had been divided among four battalions. The number of battalions will now be reduced to three, a move Mayor Fulop said should have been done under the previous administration of Mayor Jerramiah T. Healy when Healy cut the number of companies from 32 to 22.
“The city has been paying far too much in overtime costs for the Fire Department, the majority of which has been a result of inefficient staffing,” said Director Shea. “This measure will allow us to reassign fire captains, thereby eliminating much of the overtime and increasing the safety of our residents. The upgrade of the position of safety officer will also enhance the safety of our firefighters.”
The reorganization will result in additional fire captains being available on all four of the department’s tours, reducing the need for overtime at the captain rank, according to the Fulop administration. In addition, four of the department’s battalion chiefs will now serve as safety officers, a position previously staffed by captains.
“Our goal is to significantly cut overtime while also adding more companies weekly to increase fire protection,” Fulop said in a release issued Wednesday. “We are reorganizing the command structure to redeploy personnel to enhance public safety, increase efficiency and reduce costs…The union will not like these changes. We understand that. But…we are committed to increasing public safety for all of our residents and having city government work as efficiently as possible.”
LibertyHealth Foundation to co-sponsor breast cancer awareness brunch
The LibertyHealth Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Jersey City Medical Center, will sponsor keynote speaker Lillie Shockney at the upcoming Breast Cancer Awareness Brunch to be held on Sunday, October 27 at the Westin Hotel, 479 Washington Blvd.
The brunch will be hosted by the Madeline Fiadini LoRe Foundation for Cancer Prevention, which helps offer cancer screening to people who might otherwise be denied. The foundation works closely with Jersey City Medical Center to ensure that many women receive testing and diagnostics.
Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop will serve as honorary chairman of the brunch.
Dr. Julie DiGioia, medical director of the Cristie Kerr Women’s Health Center at Jersey City Medical Center, and herself a breast cancer survivor, will make opening remarks. Shockney’s keynote address will follow. Shockney is the author of “Navigating Breast Cancer: A Guide for the Newly Diagnosed,” among other books. She is also the director of education and outreach at Johns Hopkins Center and a breast cancer survivor. Brunch attendees will each receive a copy of “Navigating Breast Cancer,” compliments of Liberty Health Foundation and Jersey City Medical Center.
The event will start with shopping opportunities from a variety of local vendors from 10 a.m. to noon.
Tickets for the brunch are $50 per person and include complimentary valet parking. For more information, contact the Fiadini LoRe Foundation for Cancer Prevention at (201) 437-9100 or visit www.mflfoundation.com.
Jersey City to host AWARE fair
The Hudson County Co-Occurring Task Force will hold an Advocating for Wellness and Recovery Empowerment (AWARE) Fair on Tuesday, October 22 from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Dr. Lena Edwards Academic Charter School, which will co-sponsor the event. The fair will take place at 832 Ocean Ave., between Bramhall Avenue and Union Street. Free information about community social services and behavioral healthcare services will be available, as will information for professionals interested in learning more about social services.
Vendors will include behavioral health and medical providers, as well as other social service providers. Consumers, professionals, and families are welcome. For more information, contact Gordon Levine at (201) 915-2000, ext 3516.
Conference to help businesses and towns make most out of Super Bowl
The Conference, the kickoff event of “The Conference/The Party,” will take place on Tuesday, Oct. 22, from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Maritime Parc, 84 Audrey Zapp Dr., in Liberty State Park.
The affair is an event for New Jersey and New York businesses, government, community, tourism, and civic organizations to educate them on how to leverage the influx of 200,000 to 450,000 spectators who will be in the area for Super Bowl XLVIII. The Conference is designed to provide the tools needed to stimulate immediate growth and future opportunities.
This event will further provide opportunities for attendees to network and engage in broader discussions on how hosting an event like the Super Bowl can impact the region, enhance its position as a global destination, and translate into doing business beyond its borders.
Speakers include TV journalist Soledad O’Brien; former New Jersey Gov. James McGreevey, currently director of the Jersey City Employment and Training Commission; Tracye McDaniel, president and chief executive officer of Choose New Jersey; and Wayne Hasenbalg, president and chief executive officer of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority.
For more information, or to register, visit www.theconferencetheparty.com or contact Radia Funna at firstname.lastname@example.org or (201) 706-3686.
PS 27 Parent Teacher Association to host fall harvest flea market
The Parent Teacher Association (PTA) of PS 27 is inviting the community to take part in its upcoming Fall Harvest Flea Market on Saturday, Oct. 26 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The flea market will include up to 40 local vendors promoting a range of products including jewelry, clothing, and health/fitness products. In addition to local vendors, the community will have the opportunity to support the students of PS 27 by participating in several 50/50 raffles, buying food and beverages, and providing donations for their initiatives.
The entire community is welcome and encouraged to attend this fundraiser.
Any vendor who would like to participate in the Fall Harvest Flea Market should contact Joel Torres, PS 27 PTA president directly via e-mail at JoelTorres.JC@gmail.com or cell phone at (201) 682-9010. Space is limited and there is a $20 fee per table/space. All proceeds go toward student initiatives and programming at PS 27.
Community blood drives this month
The Super Bowl Host Committee and New Jersey Blood Services (NJBS), a division of the New York Blood Center (NYBC) are partnering for a series of community blood drives. The drives will be held at the following locations:
• Wednesday, Oct. 23: Harborside Center Plaza, 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
• Thursday, Oct. 31: Hudson County Community College, 70 Sip Ave., 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
In addition to these two blood drives in Jersey City, there will also be a fourth one held on Friday, Oct. 25 in Union City at Union City High School, 2500 Kennedy Blvd. from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
All presenting donors at these blood drives will receive a red community blood drive wristband and will have the opportunity to enter for a chance to win two tickets to Super Bowl XLVIII in 2014. Walk-ins are welcome, but donors are encouraged to schedule an appointment in advance: by calling (800) 933-BLOOD or by visiting www.nybloodcenter.org.
Landmark Loew’s seeking submissions for 2014 StageFest
The Landmark Loew’s Jersey Theatre is now taking applications for the second annual StageFest,, a festival of one-act plays, scheduled to take place March 14 through 16, 2014.
The inaugural StageFest, held earlier this year at the Loew’s, was a great success and included 50 performances, over 20 hours of programming, and work from 18 individual artists and performing companies. Next year, the Loew’s hopes to continue this success by presenting another festival of vibrant and diverse one-act plays, performance installations, and site-specific work, dedicated to the celebration and advancement of theater in our region.
Theater and performance companies, as well as individuals based in the greater Northern and Central New Jersey areas, are invited to submit scripts and proposals for the 2014 StageFest. The deadline for submissions is Sunday, December 1, 2013.There is NO application fee. For additional information or to download an application, visit www.loewsjersey.org/StageFest. For questions about the festival, e-mail StageFest.Loews@gmail.com.
In an effort to push conventional boundaries, StageFest performances take place in every practical useable space within the Loew’s, not just onstage. Performances can be held in the lobby, salons, promenades, and hallways.
StageFest is produced by Friends of the Loew’s Inc., a nonprofit organization that restores, maintains, and operates the Landmark Loew’s Jersey Theatre, located at Journal Square
Animal League holds wine-tasting fundraiser
The Hudson County Animal League is inviting everyone to help them celebrate their 20th Anniversary of saving the lives of homeless and abused animals through a wine-tasting event sponsored by Bridgeview Liquors of Bayonne.
The wine tasting will be held on Nov. 9, from 4 to 6 p.m., at the Bayonne Museum, 8th Street and Broadway in Bayonne.
Tickets, at $15, can be purchased in advance by contacting Barbara Devaney at email@example.com or (201) 436-1848. You can also pay through PayPal by visiting the group’s “Donate” page. Tickets, at $20, can also be purchased the day of the event.