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Re: New Redevelopment Plan comming for downtown???
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A mall might be more than necessary, but I've been saying for years it needs to be one way from Jersey to Grove. Cars & trucks illegally parking on the S side force cars and bicycles into dangerous traffic. Also, doubling the available meters would be a boon to businesses. If I'm in my car rather than on foot or bike I'll go elsewhere, rather than waste time with a futile search for parking there.

Posted on: 2006/11/14 11:46
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Re: New York magazine article on downtown Jersey City
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NYmag,

You should clarify to us whether you're looking to write a "real estate porn" fluff piece about all the cool people moving to a popping, relatively affordable neighborhood just across the river, or a real study on what happens when gentrification meets old line Hudson County incompetence and corruption.

The former has been done, the latter is Pulitzer material.

This is a city of 240k people with a huge building boom that still manages to be broke. Even the Parking Authority (you know, the people who give parking tickets and manages the lots) contrives to operate in the red. Imagine the malfeasance that takes!

The beautiful brownstone neighborhoods aren't so lovely underneath, everyone's basements flood with sewer water when it rains hard because the 130 year old sewers are crumbling and not only isn't there money to modernize them, they don't even have a plan to if they did.

While the few historic districts are treated to strict controls on every external detail, elsewhere in the city, blocks of hideous "pink sugared brick" staten island type 2 family mostrosities are thrown up as fast and as cheap as the carpetbagging developers can do it.

The first person who showed me real estate in JC said "you can manufacture plutonium in Jersey City if you know the right people", and in 9 years I've seen little to prove him wrong. But he was too cynical, as he was unloading his holdings in 97, and left millions on the table. That's a JC
story too, as people sold thinking "this can't go ANY higher!" . But it did, and you now have people in townhouses who paid literally 70 times what their neighbor paid 35 years ago, and are able to walk to art galleries and french bistros.

As Shreck said, we're like an onion: lots of layers, with a stink.

Posted on: 2006/11/14 0:32
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Re: New York magazine article on downtown Jersey City
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Quote:

alb wrote:
I think the Jersey City public schools might actually have better after school care/youth programs than New York does, but, obviously, supply is not keeping up with demand.


Perhaps not for long if the suburban tax rebels succeed in gutting the Abbott program that gives us $14k per kid. The idea that spending alot on inner city public education is better than spending even more on jails, law enforcement and social services eludes them, never mind the social justice aspect of it.

Posted on: 2006/11/13 21:21
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Re: Pitfalls of renting to a foreign contract tech worker?
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Quote:

GrovePath wrote:
Just make sure he is who he says he is -- GS can tell you that they use his firm. Also do ask for a letter from his company stating how long they plan to have him in JC.

You know, if you are willing to gamble with short term renters from outside the USA - you might consider creating a furnished apartment and have short leases -- you could get a real premium -- not sure about here but it is common elsewhere.


He's candidly said the current contract runs till august, but he's confident it and his visa will be renewed. So the worst case as far as that is a 9 month lease. I've had tenants break a lease after 3 months. Even holding them to the lease and losing no rent in a transition to a new tenant it was a pain in the ass. You just never know no matter what they say.

I've thought about the furnished apt thing, loosely known as a B&B apt. If I had a ground floor apt available I think I could easily rent it for visiting parents and relatives. Have you looked at the hotel prices around here?!!. I have a nice 2nd floor unit, but parents don't like stairs.

Posted on: 2006/11/9 17:10
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Re: Pitfalls of renting to a foreign contract tech worker?
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thanks GP,

I actually don't mind if he's only here a year, the apt needs more reno work done on it, but the timing right now is bad for me, I'm too busy.

He says there's no point in talking to G-S, since they're simply the clients of his firm, not his employer.

I just don't know, we've been pretty lucky with good, low maintainance tenants, I just don't want to push it.

Posted on: 2006/11/9 15:16
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Pitfalls of renting to a foreign contract tech worker?
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A nice young Indian gent wants to rent an apartment from me, but he has no local credit history as he works for an Indian firm doing contract work for Goldman-Sachs. He is going to provide me with documentation of his visa, employment and his salary, which is plenty sufficient to afford the place. But the local contact is not at G-S, but at the US offices of his firm.

Any clues as to what should I be cautious of, if anything, in this deal? It's kinda new territory for me, but I've rented in the past, before getting cautious, to folks with less apparent substance.

Posted on: 2006/11/9 12:56
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Re: As prices flatten in popular suburban areas, prices still surge upwards in Jersey's cities.
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Quote:

sc2006 wrote:
Hard to believe this article - Just go to any open house (even new construction - Waldo Lofts, Washington commons, A Condos) and see how much the prices have dropped. One unit i had an interest in WALDO lofts was dropped $100K


While I do expect prices to drop, what the above means is debatable. Sellers pulling back from fantasy prices to reality might not be considered an actual drop, unlike someone being unable to sell for at least what they bought for. Only when people start losing money on the flip will the oxygen masks fall and you know there's real trouble ahead.

The fantasy prices, especially at the high end, are what fueled the bubble. Sellers would set a crazy high price and get it from someone taking an interest only 3 year fixed loan, then everyone else would take that as their benchmark, buyer & sellers alike. I remember reading last year about hyperluxury properties being marked down from like $20m to $10m. That wasn't real money lost, just a wake up from a dream.

Posted on: 2006/10/30 11:23
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Re: Want property tax reform? Consider municipal consolidations mergers- Jersey City, Hoboken & Bayo
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From what I've read, the problem is, and what Manzo tries to address, that NJ taxes are regressive rather than progressive, that RE taxes cost the middle class and the poor more, while income taxes hit the rich more. According to this website posted by niceguyeddie, our overall taxload isn't high, it's simply unfairly distributed and enforced. The actual rates are so high because so many weasel out of paying.

http://www.taxfoundation.org/blog/show/1834.html

"- New Jersey’s surprisingly low state and local tax burden, as calculated by the Tax Foundation, is a powerful signal that the state’s tax system is riddled with credits, deductions and exemptions. With corporate and individual tax rates at 9 percent (without the surtax) and 8.97 percent respectively, New Jersey should be on the top of the tax burden ranks. It is not because its tax systems are riddled with holes."

This table http://www.taxfoundation.org/taxdata/show/469.html
says we are only 0.2% above national average in tax burden.

My point is that there's lots of hyperbole thrown around about our taxes, most of it false and inflammatory stuff about how we are overtaxed.

As for mergers, hahahahahaha!!. just like people will say all politicians are rascal and should be thrown out, except their congressman, they'll say mergers are a great idea but would never give up their local gov't. There's just too much graft and nepotism opportunities there for that to happen. Hoboken giving up its Mayor would be like a Texas town giving up football.

Posted on: 2006/10/20 11:20
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Re: Jersey's high cost of housing tops nation - Ownership eats up residents' incomes
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What's the right answer?

There are people around here who bought a town house in a drug infested area 25 years ago for $10k, who would be paying that yearly if they were accurately reassessed. But many couldn't afford that and would lose their homes.

Should the assessement only be changed on turnover, or continually using a computerized comp system like Zillow? Neither seems fair, so we end up with the sloppy system we have.

Posted on: 2006/10/5 21:22
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Re: How to develop western JC? 160 acres including warehouse on agenda for Planning Board
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Quote:

niceguyeddie wrote:
[Brewster, sorry for the late response. Here are a few sources:

http://www.taxfoundation.org/publications/show/78.html

http://www.ppinys.org/reports/jtf/businesstax.htm

http://www.taxfoundation.org/blog/show/1834.html

http://www.njchamber.com/media/march%2006%20tax%20climate.htm

As you can see, NJ doesn't do very well in any of these. Also, if you look at population trends, some of the states that are growing the fastest are AZ, NV, FL and TX, and they also have some of the friendliest tax environments. I'm sure there are other reasons, but our taxes don't help.


Well, here's a quote from your 3rd link

"- New Jersey’s surprisingly low state and local tax burden, as calculated by the Tax Foundation, is a powerful signal that the state’s tax system is riddled with credits, deductions and exemptions. With corporate and individual tax rates at 9 percent (without the surtax) and 8.97 percent respectively, New Jersey should be on the top of the tax burden ranks. It is not because its tax systems are riddled with holes."

So much for taxing and spending too much, rather than poorly. I note also that many (not all) of the cited business friendlier states are in the boonies, where they need to incentivize companies to move there.

From the 1st link:
The ten best states in the Tax Foundation’s 2006 State Business Tax Climate Index are as follows:

1. Wyoming
2. South Dakota
3. Alaska
4. Florida
5. Nevada
6. New Hampshire
7. Texas
8. Delaware
9. Montana
10. Oregon

Posted on: 2006/9/28 10:43
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Re: How to develop western JC? 160 acres including warehouse on agenda for Planning Board
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Quote:

niceguyeddie wrote:
JC, and areas like it, prefer to spend too much, tax everybody and then rely on political favors to attract business. NJ overall is still losing employers because of its high tax base.


Can you provide data proving that we tax and spend too much relative to other cities or state's overall tax load? I'm perfectly willing to believe it, but all I've seen or heard is statements like yours. On the other hand I've seen a Rutgers study I linked in another thread that said our tax load wasn't actually high, just imbalanced & overeliant on property tax.

Lets see numbers like per capita tax load comparisons, or per capita municipal expeditures, rather than ideology.

Posted on: 2006/9/27 19:00
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Re: How to develop western JC? 160 acres including warehouse on agenda for Planning Board
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Does anyone remember the first incarnation of the plan for the Brooklyn Bridge Park waterfront redevelopment? It included commercial and residential development along with quite a lot of active and passive parkspace. It got slammed by the Brooklyn Heights crowd as a sellout, probably rightly as that area is no longer in need of help to develop economically. But it seems to me that kind of vision would be just right for the enviromentally and economically blighted area between 440 and the Hackensack.

Lets stop trying to reinvent the wheel in JC and look at what other cities have done or planned for their deindustrialized zones.

Lets think about other industries to attract. Fim sound stages? gourmet vegetable greenhouses? Film sound stages with gourmet vegetable greenhouses on the roof? Why can't JC think like a city of the future rather than a city of the past, building warehouses.

Posted on: 2006/9/27 17:47
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Re: Does the HPNA represent the community?
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Quote:

LoudMouth wrote:
I havent heard much on the HPNA front, is it still in existance? Whats initatives are they working on, is there a website?


Please visit the HPNA Website at:

www.hamiltonpark.org

To receive our newsletters electronically, please register at our yahoo groups site at.

HPNA-JC-Public-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

Posted on: 2006/9/25 22:12
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Re: How to develop western JC? 160 acres including warehouse on agenda for Planning Board
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Quote:

DeltaFox wrote:
I wish they would use this space as farmland.


Sweet thought, but trust me, you wouldn't want to eat anything that grew in that ground.

ITS A TOXIC DUMP, A SUPERFUND SITE!!!

Geez...what's the next suggestion, a NASCAR track? A solar panel plantation? A cricket stadium?

Posted on: 2006/9/24 23:20
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Re: How to develop western JC? 160 acres including warehouse on agenda for Planning Board
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Boy, people complained about the tennis courts in HP as being low density usage of a park, that's nothing compared to a golf course!

It's so pathetic, you've got a blank slate over there and this is all they can come up with. The only way you'd get a visionary in our city hall was if you put LSD in their bottled water.

Posted on: 2006/9/24 22:28
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Re: Zoning Board to Consider Building Housing on the Embankment
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Quote:

AlanSommerman wrote:
To all of you who follow the park situation in JC - will there ever be a way to get to LSP by bike other than getting off the riverwalk and going inland to Jersey Avenue?


No. The cost of building and maintaining a drawbridge across the mouth of the canal is totally prohibitive. Give it up, and look forward to the day when the recycler is gone and the ride to the footbridge is more pleasant. You can't be further from the bridge than I am in HP and I get there quite quickly.

Pazman,

All your reasons FOR are quite wonderful and in a perfect world indisputable, but you fail to address in real terms the safety issue. Please don't suggest cameras, recent events have made clear the police consider them useless.

Does anyone know how NYC plans to secure the Highline park?

Posted on: 2006/9/20 19:20
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Re: Zoning Board to Consider Building Housing on the Embankment
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I'm pro parks too, but it seems to me the embankment coalition folks are in denial on that issue. I can't see a park being created that can't be observed, at least in this city. As it is there's condoms and KY being pulled out of the HP gazebo shrubbery. Can you imagine what would go on up on an embankment?

Posted on: 2006/9/20 15:47
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Re: Hamilton Park Renovation - Meeting Dates
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The problem I see with this process is that as of right now there doesn't actually appear to be any accountability in the meetings with T&M. It seems individuals can suggest all we want, but so far there's been no indication of a concensus building process in this stage.

When HPNA was shown the plans for the Enos Jones Park renovation 8 years ago residents had all sorts of suggestions, including a dog run. All of them were ignored. I'd hate to see that happen here. My first thought was that a show of hands "straw vote" would be useful on the issues that are negotiable within the accepted guidelines of the survey results, but that doesn't seem in the cards.

So, since your opinion will not actually be asked, if you want your voice to be heard on the suggestions and issues discussed in this thread or anyting else you had better stand up and speak tonight.

Posted on: 2006/9/5 10:57
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Re: McNair Academic Ranked #1 in NJ!
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I dug around on that website a little. What nonsense!!!

How about the "best towns to live" listing. Hoboken ranks 11th of 12 in Hudson County and 429 of 566 for the state, well behind JC's 284. Anybody buy this crap? Maybe someone should tell Corzine he's doing a Corey Booker and actually slumming it.

Posted on: 2006/9/3 15:07
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Re: McNair Academic Ranked #1 in NJ!
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Not that I don't want my kids to get into Academic, but these rankings are all hooey. Not only should Academic be excluded due to being a "test in" school, but the Newsweek rankings give them a "by" because they're SAT's are lower than some of the regular public schools!

To give weight to "offering" AP classes, as the Newsweek rankings do, is silly. High schools should be ranked by outcomes, like college admission rates indexed by competitiveness of the college. Getting into a college that accepts 10% would count for more than a school that accepts 90% and you take only the top 3 admissions of any student.

Check out Millburn. More teachers with advanced degrees than our "premier" school, higher SAT's, and although fewer students take the AP's they score much better. Much of Academic's record appears to be going through the motions of, rather than actually BEING, a better school.

Like JC in general, our schools need improved leadership.

Posted on: 2006/9/3 12:04
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Re: Hamilton Park Renovation - Meeting Dates
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Quote:

BrightMoment wrote:
I would prefer the oldest arts organization in JC, under whose aegis the annual Jersey City Artists Studio Tour was begun by Charles Kessler in 1990:


Sounds fine, whatever works.

DrEvil,

The art of public speaking without a mike is clearly lost. It seems people are taught as children NEVER to raise their voice, even speaking to a crowd. We face this problem continually in Q&A's at HPNA meetings. You ask someone to speak up, and they continue at exactly the same inaudible level. My wife's default voice is nearly a whisper, no matter how much background noise there is! I thought I was going deaf till I was tested and found she was gaslighting me. If you attend theater, you'll know that there is no venue too small for the singers to be body miked, because they have no training to project. Sorry for the rant; a pet peeve from someone often criticised for speaking too loudly.

As for kids at the meeting, parents are perennially underrepresented at community meetings, so it was great to see them there if bringing the kids is what it takes!

Posted on: 2006/9/2 21:01
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Re: Hamilton Park Renovation - Meeting Dates
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Quote:

BrightMoment wrote:
I agree with both you and Brewster on temporary art. NO permanent pieces (see LSP topic thread to see why!), but rotated pieces open to ALL galleries and museums to submit, NOT just curated by JC Museum, will give great locale for diversity of art here in JC.


I would think it SHOULD showcase local art, but someone's got to be in charge of quality control and space design. If not the museum, then some other responsible arts organization under some sort of deal with the city.

Thanks for supporting the plaza idea.

Posted on: 2006/9/1 20:16
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Re: Hamilton Park Renovation - Meeting Dates
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Quote:

Garyg wrote:
I think the fountain pictued would be a great idea. I don't want to see a tacky type of water feature, anything like the one in the park on brunswick (I don't know the name). If the feature is moved to the front of the gazebo, it needs to be the same surface as the rest of the area, hopefully it will not have the children's play ground safety surface on it. I wouldn't want to see the area that was formally occupied by the water feature to be turned into anything other then open space.


The surface of dark squares you see in the fountain photo is actually granite slabs with the holes for the jets drilled into them. There's no rubber at all.

Posted on: 2006/8/31 16:43
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Re: Hamilton Park Renovation - Meeting Dates
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Quote:

25mcwilliams wrote:
I agree. The Pier A type of fountain is a good idea. I think it is called a recessed outdoor fountain. Allowing dual use of the space is desirable.

The children's garden was not included in the drawings and was mentioned by an attendee. It is covered at 25mc.com Blog.

Quote:

karindiann wrote:
I think brewster has an excellent idea -- the fountain pictured is very attractive -- making it part of the central plaza would open up the gazebo space, as well as allowing the fountain area to be useful in all seasons.

Does anyone have any information about the children's garden which was discussed earlier? It doesn't seem to be included in the plan. Was the idea dismissed, or is this garden included as part of the "ornamental garden" area?


There was a little discussion of perhaps one of the grassy sections left over in the tennis courts area being used for the childrens garden. They are kind of wasted. Another possibility would be the section vacated by the childrens fountain if the idea for moving it flies. Thanks for the supporting comments for the idea, we'll need to be vocal to get changes. I fear he was just yessing us about everything, and we'll see no changes. Hopefully I'm wrong.

Another idea brought up by an attendee was local art in the park. Now, I would be opposed to ANY permanent art installations, but what if the vacated fountain spot were to be a "art garden" of temporary installations curated by the JC museum? It's a risky idea, but could be interesting....

Posted on: 2006/8/31 15:09
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Re: Hamilton Park Renovation - Meeting Dates
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Quote:

thetruth wrote:
Overall, I definitely liked the plan. I think it would be so much cooler to have the fountain in the center of the park but I just that is a non-starter.


I was the one proposing moving the childrens water play fountain, which from what he described is much like the Pier A fountain in Hoboken, to an enlarged central plaza in front of the gazebo. Anyone who's been to Pier A when it's running knows how attractive their fountain and it's setting is. When it's turned off, there is essentially nothing but pavement with small holes, the area is completely recovered for pedestrians.

If we did this, not only would we get to keep the "amphitheater" like quality in front of the gazebo for events like concerts and plays, but the fountain becomes a secondary active and passive central focus, surrounded by park benches, rather than just for kids in a side quadrant that becomes barren 3/4 of the year. For events you simply turn off the fountain.

Here's a sketch of the idea. We can push back or eliminate (as I have done) the inner western grass sections but use some sort of masonry pattern to keep the indication of the inner circle, if that is considered important. From the drawing, it appears that from the gazebo steps to the inner ring is only about 40 feet.

Public gathering space such as we currently have isn't that common in this city, we should think carefully about it's design. It appears not to have been considered for VV park, yet has historically been a role for our parks.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Posted on: 2006/8/31 12:02
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Re: Hamilton Park Renovation - Meeting Dates
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Quote:


I agree, tern/Robin, and would have been nice if Minnie had spelled it out that she had an insider's view on these plans (does she know "JARRETT RENSHAW" who wrote the JJ article?)and KNEW that's what plans said instead of making it seem like her own personal agenda.
[/url]


I wouldn't rule out the reporter getting his info from Minnie and not factchecking it.

Posted on: 2006/8/30 14:48
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Re: KILLED IN GUN BATTLE: Booker T. Washington Public Housing Complex on Bright street
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Quote:

Metro wrote:
Quote:

hero69 wrote:
Maybe they should have 24-hour surveillance cameras and armed national guards and/or police on a 24 hour basis patrolling the projects. Something need to be done about the lawlessness in the projects.


That's a dam good idea, JCPD have many cameras in high crime areas, why not there?


See the thread about the 7th & Coles robbery to know why cameras are a waste of time. The school wouldn't turn over the tapes and the JCPD couldn't care less. They told the victims they wouldn't view them if they had them.

Posted on: 2006/8/29 18:00
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Re: Hamilton Park Renovation - Meeting Dates
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Quote:

4bailey wrote:
Getting back to the meeting…

For the uninitiated newbies, when the location and time is posted as “St. Francis @ 7 PM”, is there an exact address (intersection, room #, etc.)??

I’ve never been to one of these things…


There's a doorway on McWilliams Pl just north of the Nursing school building, the southernmost building on the block between 8th & 9th just west of Erie. We had an HPNA meeting in the lobby there, I hope they have a bigger space available if this gets a lot of people.

Steve Fulop said why they're not releasing plans before the meeting earlier in the thread, but it sure would deflate some of the disinformation and hyperbole being spread.

Posted on: 2006/8/27 19:31
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Re: Daytime Burglary on Coles and 7th
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Quote:

jennymayla wrote:
Thanks for the tip! Now feel like telling me how to upload an image from my desktop onto a posting?


Open a free account at Photobucket.com or one of its peers, upload a photo, then cut and paste the "tag" they provide into your post. done. You can even reduce the size of the image from their site.

Posted on: 2006/8/25 22:21
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Jersey Journal collecting opinions on LSP 9/11 memorial
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Forwarded from Sam Pesin. Note, send emails or call the JJ, not FOLSP. I hope the email is correct, it's odd for the JJ not to have it's own domain, but the elderly lady who answered the JJ phone said it was.



Hi Supporters of Liberty State Park,

THE JERSEY JOURNAL IS ASKING FOR CALLS (201-217-2500) OR EMAILS ON MEMORIAL DESIGN. CONTACT INFO IS BELOW. UNDER THE EDITORS' REQUEST FOR OPINIONS IS TODAY'S 4 LETTERS TO EDITOR ON THE MEMORIAL.
THANKS FOR CONSIDERING EXPRESSING YOURSELF AT THIS CRUCIAL TIME WHEN GOV NEEDS TO GET PUBLIC INPUT Sam
www.folsp.org

Below is The Jersey Journal's request for opinions on the LSP Memorial, the 10 foot high by 200 foot hill long Hill, and the 30 foot high by 200 foot long stainless steel Walls that would be inserted into the southern end of the Hill. The architect's renderings are on his website, http://www.schwartzarch.com/nj911memorial.htm - the second image, an aerial one is deceptive as it doesn't show how the hill will block views toward Ground Zero, Lower Manhattan & river, that second image also doesn't show the nearby CRRNJ historic landmark railroad Terminal. The Public Plaza that was used for free summer concerts, festivals, and people sitting and walking and taking in the skyline is now covered over.

THE JERSEY JOURNAL EDITORIAL NOTE: The Jersey Journal has received a number of opinions about the proposed memorial at Liberty State Park, which will sit atop a mound at least 10 feet high. Many of our readers have complained the mound blocks views of the New York City skyline. In addition, some believe the location, next to the historic Central Railroad of New Jersey terminal, is inappropriate. What's your opinion?
Send an e-mail to jjletters@aol.com or call (201) 217-2500.

Posted on: 2006/8/25 17:13
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