Meeting Minutes – May 16th, 2017
7:05 pm – Call to Order – President Oona Moore
- Welcome to all, welcome spring
Treasurer Report – Oona Moore
- All accounts in good standing
Construction Committee Report – Tom Ogorzalek
- 198 Wayne St
- New owner. Empty property currently. Have to amend redevelopment plan (Dixon), wanted VVPA thoughts on approach for this. City Planning will have to re-open the redevelopment plan and send any proposed changes to VVPA
- June or July there will be a presentation to whole community
- Not in historic district, but concerns raised by construction committee on how developer will deal with adjacent properties, light/air and parking, etc.
- Concern: if we change density standards for this property, how will this impact development of adjacent properties
- 328 Montgomery
- Moved over to Harsimus Cove — what are the owners planning on doing with the building? Unknown at this time. Will follow up with City to get more information if possible.
- Will need to continue to monitor this to see if a tenant comes in and what planned use they have (not a nightclub)
- Mercer St Rooftop ordinance/decks
- Ordinance on the books which protects historic district, but not buildings outside the historic district. Tried to work on city-wide ordinance.
- Marco & Pepe will be a French Lebanese Restaurant – will be BYOB
Events Committee Report – Oona Moore
2nd Annual Golf Outing & Martini Party – Friday, June 9th, tee off @ 5pm @ Skyway Golf Course, JC. Tickets available via Eventbrite
- Non golfers welcome too! Putting contest & putt-putt game
- Drinks, food, music, prizes and fun!
- Discount prices available through 5/26/
Movies in the Park
- Estimated to start June 14th; runs every other Wednesday throughout the summer @ the gazeebo in Van Vorst Park
- If you have ideas for movies, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Arts Events Happening around JC
- Volunteers for Arts Committee welcome!
- JC Fridays – 1st Friday in June – art, music, etc. all throughout JC
- Riverview Jazz Festival – Ogden Ave @ Palm St. Stage – June 3rd – June 10th
- Brightside Tavern – First Mondays Jazz Performance
- Victory Hall Drawing Room art shows, artist talks & reception, other events
- JCAST October 14th/15th
Nick Grillo – Running councilman of Ward E; Democrat running as Independent Candidate
- Born & raised in Village/Hamilton Park area
- Piano player è pipe organist è Funeral Director è Purchased own funeral home in Bloomfield, NJ è Music Director @ Holy Rosary Church è Co-chair of La Festa Italiana since 1999
- Political concerns: Quality of Life. Has seen JC blossom over the years (construction debris, delivery trucks, noise). Smart development – don’t overbuild, especially in/around historic areas, parking, etc.
- Reval is a concern. He is working to help encourage seniors to enroll in senior freeze. And, has been working with JC Safe Streets
- Abatements is a concern for him as well, ensuring the abatements are contributing to school funding
- Embankment – supports making this the “highline” of JC, wants space for artists
- Contact Info: Njgrillo.com; Twitter: @grillo4jc; Facebook: Nick Grillo
- Questions from Community
- Litter in front of properties – ideas for addressing this?
- Solution: hire more workers, be sensitive to budget; grassroots campaigns
- Balancing his own business with needs of being available for meetings as a councilperson?
- Bec he owns his own business, can hire funeral directors as needed to attend necessary meetings
- Why running?
- Likes to help and serve people, loves JC, in very involved in JC, wants to continue to see this neighborhood blossom
- Litter in front of properties – ideas for addressing this?
Bright & Varick micro-unit project update
- Project in Ward F. Blighted site in 2011, at same meeting they adopted a new re-development plan. Was supposed to be similar to neighborhood with parking. VVPA not aware of plan.
- Came to light to VVPA in 2013 – Developer never came to community to present.
- Redevelopment plan didn’t have statute for density (how many units you can put on a parcel). VVPA tried to re-open redevelopment plan – two weeks prior to us officially asking, application filed by developer with planning.
- Developer didn’t want to meet w/ community. VVPA hired lawyer.
- Mayor’s office said there is ambiguity on density è need to go to planning
- Developer wants automatic approval since planning presentation wasn’t scheduled
- City tried case and lost @ local Hudson County Court. VVPA got approval from court to take over case from City.
- Current Status:
- VVPA filed motion of reconsideration. Met w/ City this afternoon and they said they will support and file a petition of certiorari. Big deal: precedent setting – gives way for developers to have a mechanism for circumvent public process and zoning laws. This has ramifications throughout the state.
- City is now working in conjunction w/ VVPA attorney – looking to have JC and VVPA legal team work w/ league of municipalities
- JCRA still owns the property
- Continue to support – donate online or come to upcoming fundraisers
- Strength in Community when you decide to do something together! Simple things make a big difference!
Angela McKnight – Running for Assemblywoman for 31st District: all of Bayonne and parts of JC
- Born and raised in JC. Runs Angela Cares – Non-profit that works w/ seniors.
- Ran for assemblywoman 2 years ago and won! Has introduced legislation for seniors, disabled, animals, environment, and veterans.
- Wants to win again! Workaholic, will roll up sleeves and dig in. Wants to partner with VVPA and community.
- Need good person down in Trenton to look out for JC! She likes to facilitate change.
Old Business/New Business
- Recognition for Board Member Angelo Estrada’s Community Leadership Awards
- Reval – go to City’s Website for Property Tax Reval Map for information on who will be coming to do reval in your home
- JSQ Farmers market on Fridays – Plan 2045 for Transportation Infrastructure will have table up there; For more info: www.njtpa.org/plan2045
- JC Dept of Recreation – Free Boot Camp in VVP @ gazeebo – Tuesdays @ 7:15am
- Sandra Lovely – Greenville Neighborhood Alliance
- Board fully formed, Block Association workshop on Thursday
- Goal: Want to create block associations in Ward A and F and want to bring them together to deal w/ issues. Accomplishment: have created ~15 so far and have been making progress
- Unity Walk – 6/10 – get community united to deal w/ violence. Will have workshops following the walk (Go Fund Me Page). Newstreetba2016@yahoo.com
- North River Sing – Concert @ St. Matthew’s Church – Sun 6/11 @ 5pm. Theme: “Around the world in 80 minutes”. $20 suggested donation.
- Committee people looking to set up meeting with Jermaine Robinson councilman Ward F @ Dixon – will provide info to VVPA
- Call for Volunteers for events committee and VVPA Farmers Market Welcome Table; Need to continually infuse organization with new members to expand the forces
- Introduction of all VVP Committee-Persons candidates – Election June 6th
- Andrea & Patrick Ducas – want to be more vocally connected to political platform; wants neighbors to have a voice. Want candidates to work for endorsements. Running for Ward E District 4
- Bertram Okpokwasilli – current district person for District 28 – have tried to help people with traffic issues. An attorney in JC, coach @ Roberto Clemente, sings in a group called the Prom Dates.
- Loraine G – running with Bertram
- Ben & Lynda Bernouy – Ward F District 30 – Longtime residents; Ben is on Board of VVPA. Available for questions and very willing to help.
- Joanna Arceri – E4 – JC resident 4 years, worked on Dan Levin’s campaign
Adjournment – 9:20 pm