News

January 2016 Monthly Newsletter

16 Feb 2016, Posted by Oona Moore in Meeting Agendas, News You Can Use
Happy New Year!  The VVPA would like to wish you and yours a happy, healthy and prosperous new year!  We look forward to another year filled with awesome events, lively community meetings, and successfully partnering with our elected officials to make Jersey City a better place to live.

We received quite a few ‘end of the year’ private citizen donations, so we want to acknowledge and sincerely thank all of you who responded to our end of year appeal!  We continue to welcome donations and are grateful for your recognition for the work we volunteers do all year!

As usual, our monthly newsletter is packed with information about neighborhood activities as well as useful information on what’s happening in and around Jersey City.  The VVPA’s monthly meeting schedule is the 3rd Tuesday of the month, so we look forward to seeing you at the next VVPA monthly meeting, which will be held on Tuesday, January 19th, 2016 at 7:00 PM in The Barrow Mansion, located at 83 Wayne St.

Monthly Meeting Details & Agenda
Whether you are new to the neighborhood or a long-time resident, this is YOUR COMMUNITY.  Stop by and have a glass a wine on us, while you meet neighbors and learn about what’s going on here in your historic neighborhood!This month’s meeting features a presentation by Developers for 274 Barrow Street

Agenda:

7:00pm – Welcome and Call to Order – President Oona Moore

7:05pm – 7:30pm – Officer & Committee Reports

  • Treasurer Report – Tom Ogorzalek
  • Construction Committee Report – Tom Ogorzalek
  • Bright & Varick Committee Report– Ceci de Leon
  • Events Committee Report – Eric Carter/Marlene Sandkamp

7:30pm – 8:00pm – New Business

  • Community input is welcomed for any new issues/concerns affecting our community.  In particular, we’d like to hear from you about the future agenda items / guest speakers you’d like to see at our monthly VVPA meetings.
  • Parking Changes

8:15pm – 8:35pm – Guest Speakers

  • 274 Barrow Street

8:35pm – 9:00pm – Announcements & Community networking

News You Can Use
As always, we try to bring you as many items of interest that affect our community.  If you have any items that are important to share, please email us at vvpanews@gmail.com.

  • East District Captain’s Meetings, which are regularly scheduled for the 4th Tuesday of every month at 7pm (typically in MS4 Library on Bright St., but location subject to change), are a great opportunity for community members to discuss crime/crime trends, quality of life issues, and other safety/security concerns with the JCPD.  For more information on upcoming meetings, reach out to the JCDP East District Community Relations Officer, Dina Lionakis, at 201.547.4370 / dlionakis@njjcps.org.
  • VVPA Sponsors – In order to bring you free and low-cost events throughout the year, the VVPA depends on fundraising and sponsorship from local businesses and community members.  As we enter a new calendar year, it’s time to think about becoming a VVPA sponsor.  For more information on the benefits of becoming a sponsor, as well as the various sponsorship levels that are available, please reach out to us at vvpanews@gmail.com.  Or, you can go directly to the VVPA website and click on the Donate button!
  • In addition to receiving news you can use from VVPA, we encourage all residents to sign up to receive Community News/Updates from your elected officials. Sign up for updates from Candice Osborne and Steven Fulop by clicking on the links provided.
  • Jersey City Resident Response Center is a resource available to all to find answers to commonly asked questions or to report concerns/problems to the City of Jersey City.  In addition to utilizing the JCRRC website, residents may also download the app on their phone (Jersey City RRC Fix-It).  We encourage all to utilize these resources to help resolve issues in their community.
  • Downtown Coalition of Neighborhood Associations (DCNA) is hosting a Town Hall Meting with Mayor Fulop – come out to hear about important issues affecting your community and voice your concerns.  Meeting will be on Tuesday, January 26th at 7pm at Grace Church – 39 Erie Street
  • Jersey City Fish Stand – please join us in welcoming the Jersey City Fish Stand, a gourmet fish market, to the neighborhood.
  • Hurricane Sandy Disaster Loans for Small Businesses – On December 2, 2015, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) reopened the filing period for survivors in all states affected by Superstorm Sandy to apply for low-interest disaster loans.  For more information, visit the SBA site.
  • Spaying/Neutering of outdoor neighborhood cats – For anyone needing help getting outdoor neighborhood cats humanely spayed or neutered, reach out to the Neighborhood Cats Jersey City Hotline at 800-544-0474.  This service is free!

 

Community Events
Below is just a partial list of the many, many wonderful events happening in the Van Vorst neighborhood and throughout our city.  If you have a community event that you’d like featured in our newsletter, please reach out to us at vvpanews@gmail.com.

VVPA Events
The RED Party – Saturday, February 13th
The VVPA is busy planning the debut event for 2016 – the RED party at the Barrow Mansion.  Mark your calendars for Saturday, February 13th and stay tuned for details about this not to be missed event!
And, as always, the VVPA Events Committee is always looking for volunteers to help plan, decorate and work at these VVPA sponsored events.  For those who are interested in volunteering, email vvpanews@gmail.com

Other Jersey City Events
North River Sing’s Broadway Showstoppers – Sunday, January 31st, 4:00pm
Join the North River Sing Community Chorus Group for their Broadway Showstoppers Show at St. Matthew’s Church, 83 Wayne St.  Suggested Donation is $10, with a reception to follow the performance.  For more information, click here.

 

February 2016 Monthly Meeting Reminder

16 Feb 2016, Posted by Yolanda Foley in Updates

Just a reminder that the next VVPA monthly meeting is tonight (Tuesday, February 16th) at 7:00 PM in The Barrow Mansion, located at 83 Wayne St.  See you there!

Monthly Meeting Details & Agenda
Whether you are new to the neighborhood or a long-time resident, this is YOUR COMMUNITY.  Stop by and have a glass a wine on us, while you meet neighbors and learn about what’s going on here in your historic neighborhood!

This month’s meeting features a recap of the immensely popular DCNA Town Hall Meeting held on 1/26/15, discussion about the current and future status of the Pedestrian Mall, as well as two developer presentations.

Agenda:
7:00pm – Welcome and Call to Order – President Oona Moore
 7:05pm – 7:30pm – Officer & Committee Reports

  • Treasurer Report – Tom Ogorzalek
  • Construction Committee Report – Tom Ogorzalek
  • Bright & Varick Committee Report– Ceci de Leon
  • Events Committee Report – Eric Carter/Marlene Sandkamp

7:30pm – 8:00pm – New Business

  • DCNA Town Hall Meeting (1/26/15) Recap [Click here to access the video of this meeting — thanks, Yvonne]
    • Community Action Items / Follow Ups
  • Community input is welcomed for any new issues/concerns affecting our community.  In particular, we’d like to hear from you about the future agenda items / guest speakers you’d like to see at our monthly VVPA meetings.

8:00pm – 8:45pm – Guest Speakers

  • Pedestrian Mall – Brian Platt, Office of Innovation, JC Mayor’s Office
  • 87 Bright Street
  • Proposed Development Project at the foot of Jersey Avenue near the Morris Canal Basin – Architect Jay Valgora

8:45pm – 9:00pm – Announcements & Community networking

February 2016 Monthly Newsletter

16 Feb 2016, Posted by Yolanda Foley in Meeting Agendas, News You Can Use

Brrrrr!    We hope everyone has made it through the recent record-setting Blizzard without too much trouble, and is geared up to battle the last half of this winter season!

As usual, our monthly newsletter is packed with information about neighborhood activities as well as useful information on what’s happening in and around Jersey City.  The VVPA’s monthly meeting schedule is the 3rd Tuesday of the month, so we look forward to seeing you at the next VVPA monthly meeting, which will be held on Tuesday, February 16th, 2016 at 7:00 PM in The Barrow Mansion, located at 83 Wayne St.

Monthly Meeting Details & Agenda
Whether you are new to the neighborhood or a long-time resident, this is YOUR COMMUNITY.  Stop by and have a glass a wine on us, while you meet neighbors and learn about what’s going on here in your historic neighborhood!

This month’s meeting features a recap of the immensely popular DCNA Town Hall Meeting held on 1/26/15, discussion about the current and future status of the Pedestrian Mall, as well as two developer presentations.

Agenda:
7:00pm – Welcome and Call to Order – President Oona Moore
7:05pm – 7:30pm – Officer & Committee Reports

  • Treasurer Report – Tom Ogorzalek
  • Construction Committee Report – Tom Ogorzalek
  • Bright & Varick Committee Report– Ceci de Leon
  • Events Committee Report – Eric Carter/Marlene Sandkamp

7:30pm – 8:00pm – New Business

  • DCNA Town Hall Meeting (1/26/15) Recap [Click here to access the video of this meeting — thanks, Yvonne]
    • Community Action Items / Follow Ups
  • Community input is welcomed for any new issues/concerns affecting our community.  In particular, we’d like to hear from you about the future agenda items / guest speakers you’d like to see at our monthly VVPA meetings.

8:00pm – 8:45pm – Guest Speakers

  • Pedestrian Mall – Brian Platt, Office of Innovation, JC Mayor’s Office
  • 87 Bright Street
  • Proposed Development Project at the foot of Jersey Avenue near the Morris Canal Basin – Architect Jay Valgora

8:45pm – 9:00pm – Announcements & Community networking

News You Can Use
As always, we try to bring you as many items of interest that affect our community.  If you have any items that are important to share, please email us at vvpanews@gmail.com.

  • East District Captain’s Meetings, which are regularly scheduled for the 4th Tuesday of every month at 7pm (typically in MS4 Library on Bright St., but location subject to change), are a great opportunity for community members to discuss crime/crime trends, quality of life issues, and other safety/security concerns with the JCPD.  For more information on upcoming meetings, reach out to the JCDP East District Community Relations Officer, Dina Lionakis, at 201.547.4370 / dlionakis@njjcps.org.
  • VVPA Sponsors – In order to bring you free and low-cost events throughout the year, the VVPA depends on fundraising and sponsorship from local businesses and community members.  As we enter a new calendar year, it’s time to think about becoming a VVPA sponsor.  For more information on the benefits of becoming a sponsor, as well as the various sponsorship levels that are available, please reach out to us at vvpanews@gmail.com.  Or, you can go directly to the VVPA website and click on the Donate button!
  • In addition to receiving news you can use from VVPA, we encourage all residents to sign up to receive Community News/Updates from your elected officials. Sign up for updates from Candice Osborne and Steven Fulop by clicking on the links provided.
  • Jersey City Resident Response Center is a resource available to all to find answers to commonly asked questions or to report non-emergency concerns/problems to the City of Jersey City (potholes, failure to pick up trash, fallen tree branch removal, etc.).  In addition to utilizing the JCRRC website, residents may also download the app on their phone (Jersey City RRC Fix-It) and can attach photos to any request to help clarify the concern.  We encourage all to utilize these resources to help resolve issues in their community.
  • Stay Informed and Active in your Community by signing up for the NextDoor and Swift911 applications and monitoring local news through NJ.Com/hudson.  Nextdoor is a private social network that connects neighbors to talk online and makes communities stronger, better and safer. The City uses the Swift911 platform to send citywide emergency and non-emergency alerts through a variety of channels including voice, text message, email, fax, pager, and social media such as facebook and Twitter.  Registration is free, so join today!
  • Look for the cover story in the Sunday, 2/14 Real Estate section of the New York Times discussing development in Jersey City.
  • The Jersey City Recreation Department is offering a variety of fun classes, including Spin classes, Free Swimming Lessons, and Ice Skating Classes.  Click on the links for additional information, or contact the Jersey City Recreation Department.  Additionally, the Jersey City Recreation Department wants to hear from you!  Please download their form and share your ideas on how to improve their services.

Community Events
Below is just a partial list of the many, many wonderful events happening in the Van Vorst neighborhood and throughout our city.  If you have a community event that you’d like featured in our newsletter, please reach out to us at vvpanews@gmail.com.

VVPA Events
The RED Party – Saturday, February 13th, 7:30pm – 11pm
The VVVPA invites you to join us at the HOT, HOT, HOT RED Party!  Chase away those winter blues and party at the Barrow Mansion (shout out to our donor, Barrow Mansion Development Corporation!) on Saturday, February 13th with DJ Marvilous.  Tickets are $20 in advance (through Eventbrite) or $25 at the door.  Enjoy $5 drinks and food from our fabulous donors, OraleCocoa Bakery, Park n Sixth, and Shadman.

And, as always, the VVPA Events Committee is always looking for volunteers to help plan, decorate and work at these VVPA sponsored events.  For those who are interested in volunteering, email vvpanews@gmail.com

Other Community Events
Liberty Humane Society (LHS) Adoption Event – February 1st – 14th
Looking for a pet for that special someone?  Look no further!  The Liberty Humane Society is having an adoption event – FREE adoptions for cats and dogs 4 months and older!  For more information, click here.

Important City Public Meetings
For the full schedule and location details of Important City Public Meetings, please refer to the Public Meetings Calendar found on the City of Jersey City website.  Remember, it’s YOUR COMMUNITY, so stay informed and stay involved!

Thanks to our Generous Sponsors!
We’d like to thank our sponsor Dixon Leasing: a subsidiary of Dixon Advisory for their generous donation.  And, we always love working with Friends of Van Vorst Park!  Without our sponsors and friends, we would not be able to bring you so many FREE or low-cost events throughout the year.  We encourage all of you to support these businesses and let them know that you appreciate their donations!  If you are a local business that would like to become a VVPA sponsor, please reach out to the VVPA sponsorship committee at vvpanews@gmail.com.

Happy Holidays! It’s a Time for Giving Back

20 Dec 2015, Posted by Yolanda Foley in News You Can Use

VVPA Friends, Neighbors & Supporters:

As we come to the end of 2015, we want to take a moment to thank everyone who has contributed throughout the year in their many ways to making the VVPA a vibrant community organization.  From financial support to volunteering one’s time organizing, setting up, and cleaning up after our rockin’ events, to participating in our monthly meetings, to attending the VVPA sponsored events.  The VVPA has been an active part of this vibrant community since 1975 because of all of you!

This holiday season is the perfect time to consider contributing once again to help the VVPA continue to sponsor free and low-cost community events throughout 2016.  Making a donation is simple!  You can donate by going to the VVPA website and clicking on the Donate button or sending a check to the VVPA C/O the Barrow Mansion (83 Wayne St., Jersey City).  As a 501c3, all donations are tax deductible, so this is the perfect way to wrap up your year-end charitable contributions.  And, don’t forget to check with your employer to see if they’ll match your charitable contribution!

Additionally, the VVPA is always looking for neighbors to lend a hand by volunteering at any number of our events (listed on our monthly newsletter), participating in our committees (construction & development, sponsorship/outreach, etc.) and/or contributing any professional services that you think would be in support of our mission.  Please reach out to the board at vvpanews@gmail.com to give back to the community organization that gives so much to you throughout the year!
Happy holidays, and we look forward to a bright and joyful 2016!   The board of the Van Vorst Park Association

President – Oona Moore          1stVice President –Gerry Bakirtjy          2ndVice President – Jeff Agnew
Treasurer–Tom Ogorzalek   Secretary–Yolanda Foley    At Large-John Ross    At Large-Ben Bernouy
Director of Outreach – Angelo Estrada      Director of Special Projects – Dermot Ronan

December 2015 Monthly Newsletter

14 Dec 2015, Posted by Yolanda Foley in Meeting Agendas, News You Can Use

This month’s meeting will be a holiday potluck.  Bring a dish or some wine to share with your neighbors and spread the good cheer!!!

We look forward to seeing you at the final VVPA monthly meeting of the year, which will be held on Tuesday, December 15th, 2015 at 7:00 PM* in The Barrow Mansion, located at 83 Wayne St..  The VVPA’s monthly meeting schedule is the 3rd Tuesday of the month at 7pm.

Community Events
Below is just a partial list of the many, many wonderful events happening in the Van Vorst neighborhood and throughout our city.  If you have a community event that you’d like featured in our newsletter, please reach out to us at vvpanews@gmail.com.

VVPA Sponsored Events
Don’t forget that the events committee is looking for volunteers to help plan and execute our next party.  THE RED PARTY will be held in the Barrow Mansion on February 13th, 2016.  We are starting to plan already, so email vvpanews@gmail.com if you are interested in helping with the Red Party!


Other Community Events
Jersey City Ties Holiday Toy Drive – Saturday, December 12th, 1:00pm – 4:00pm
Join Jersey City Ties at their annual toy drive to benefit the Boys & Girls club of Hudson County.  Event will be held at Lucky 7 (322 2nd St. in Downtown JC) from 1:00pm – 4:00pm. Please bring an unwrapped gift for a child or teen or a monetary donation. Jersey City Ties will match monetary donations up to $250 and use the funds to purchase additional gifts for the kids.
Drawing Rooms Art Gala – Saturday, December 12th, 6:00pm – 9:00pm
Come on out on Saturday to join Drawing Rooms at their Art Gala this Saturday evening for an evening of art, music, food, dancing, fun, and a silent auction.  Tickets are $25 and can be purchased through Eventbrite.
Santa’s Elf Factory – December 12th & 13th, 10:00am – 4:30pm
The whole family can enjoy over an hour of fun, festive, holiday activities including making cookies, decorating cards, learning an elf jig, and meeting Santa! Come experience what it really means to be one of Santa’s special helper elves and learn their secrets! This fun filled day takes place at the Jersey City Museum – make reservations by clicking here; suggested donation $20.
Children’s Puppet Show with Nicola McEldowny + Pine Street School Information Session – Sunday, December 13th, 8am – 9am
On Sunday, December 13th from 8am – 9am, join Nicola McEldowny at Amelia’s Bistro (187 Warren Street) for a free Children’s Puppet Show.  There will be a free breakfast buffet for those in attendance.  The puppet show will take place in the private room downstairs while an information session on the Pine Street School is happening upstairs.  Space is limited, reserve through RSVP@greenivy.com.
Nimbus Dance Works’ Jersey City Nutcracker – December 18th – 20th
All are welcome to attend the Jersey City Mayor’s Christmas Concert at the Landmark Lowes Theater.  This concert is FREE!  Children’s gifts and donations are welcome and appreciated!

November 2015 VVPA Monthly Meeting Minutes

07 Dec 2015, Posted by Yolanda Foley in Minutes

Meeting Minutes – November 17th, 2015

7:07pm – Call to Order – President Oona Moore

  • Moment of silence for Meredith Lippman – Hudson County Cultural Affairs, Van Vorst Neighbor

Officer / Committee Reports

Treasurer Report – Tom Ogorzalek

  • Accounts in good financial standing

Construction /Development Committee Report – Tom Ogorzalek

  • Columbus Towers – developer haven’t come back to city planning as of yet, will reach out to Candice Osborne and Bob Kotter, head City Planner for update
  • 243, 261, 263 York St – sent revised drawings to development sub-committee for this proposed project; not all concerns addressed from when they presented previously, awaiting developer to make changes

Bright & Varick Committee Report– Ceci de Leon

  • Waiting to be scheduled by courts
  • Need to pay attorney’s fees
  • VVPA still not fully involved in the conversation – it’s between developer and city (despite our desire to be involved)

Events Committee Report – Eric Carter/Marlene Sandkamp

  • Haunted Gazeebo and Shake your Ghoul thing – very successful!
  • Barrow Mansion Development Corporation in cooperation with VVPA – Deck the Halls on Friday, 12/4/15; Open House Party/Tour of Mansion on Saturday, 12/5/15. Free and open to all!

Election for 2016 VVPA Board Members –Dan Webber, Elections Officer

  • Uncontested positions, per by-laws the individuals below assume the positions at the end of tonight’s meeting:
  • President – Oona Moore
  • 1st VP –Gerry Bakirtjy
  • 2nd VP – Jeff Agnew
  • Treasurer – Tom Ogorzalek
  • Secretary – Yolanda Foley
  • At Large – John Ross
  • At Large – Ben Bernouy

Voting on Changes to VVPA By-Laws – Dan Webber

  • Increased voting limits of members from $400 to $499
  • Board can spend up to $500 w/o submitting to a general vote, can approve it 2x w/in one month
  • Voting for funds requested at a meeting will be pushed to the subsequent meeting
  • At large positions will be permanent positions; President can appoint 2 additional positions at their discretion; past president will stay a permanent position; positions will be for 2 years, and elections for positions will be staggered; Nominations moved to October; Elections moved to November
  • New bylaws have been adopted.

New Business

  • Guest Speakers Riverview Neighborhood Association President – Kern Weisman & Treasurer – Roger; and Esther Wintner – involved with Civic JC and with neighborhood association in Lincoln Park
  • Discussed community concerns with DRAFT Central Ave Redevelopment Plan without Community Input or consideration for infrastructure, transportation, etc. Also discussed lack of Master Plan for the City and City’s continued ignoring of this concern.
  • Downtown Coalition of Neighborhood Associations (DCNA) – Top 3 Common Neighborhood Issues:
  • Master Plan – vision for city?
  • No more redevelopment plans without community input!
  • Spot zoning/restaurant under the guise of overlay zone
  • Strength in numbers for common city issues! Want to come together across the city to address these as a city. JCNC – Jersey City Neighborhood Coalition
  • Discussed how to move forward as a collective

Guest Speakers

Frank Scalcione from the JC Residents Response Center

  • Located room 106 in City Hall; Open 8am – 8pm
  • Process: complaints submitted – submitter provided tracking number as a reference (tracking #s create accountability) – issue addressed – response to submitter
  • Internal process to prioritize calls exists; however, resident isn’t informed of prioritization or timeframe for resolution
  • Recent PSE&G milling & paving issues – were resolved without RRC initially; however RRC says it is important to involve them so they can address quickly and create log/tracking
    • Signs up less than 24 hours on Varick between Columbus and Montgomery – JCRCC needs to get involved to address this immediately.
  • People don’t have confidence in the RRC’s ability to rapidly address issues in real time situation
    • What is done with the data from the complaints? Is there a data dashboard being developed? Not sure how/if this is being analyzed.
  • Call JCPD Non-Emergency Number for off-hours issues: 201.547.5477; JCRRR needs an off-hours response center person for non-emergency time sensitive issues.
  • JCRRC need to set expectations for submitters for timeframe for when issue will be resolved, or when JCRRC will get back to submitter.
  • JCRRC stated they follow up with submitters to ensure that the issue was resolved to their satisfaction.

274 Barrow Street Project: proposed 2-story addition to existing single story 3 car garage located on Montgomery St.

  • Tabled

Announcements & Community networking

  • Many committee people, working on getting a list of all committee people in the area, as well as preparing a map to identify block captains; increases network, increases safety.
  • Members will be working on updating logo for brand identity
  • Newly appointed Directors: Angelo Estrada, director of outreach; Dermot Ronan, director of special projects (brochure for new residents, sponsorship committee)

Adjournment – 9:15 pm

November 2015 Monthly Newsletter

11 Nov 2015, Posted by Oona Moore in Meeting Agendas, News You Can Use

 

During this Thanksgiving season, the VVPA would like to take a moment to thank all of our hard working volunteers who put in many hours of service to our community, all of the businesses and organizations who have donated their time, financial support and goodwill to make all of our events a roaring success, and to all of the members of the community who actively participate at our monthly meetings and support the VVPA by attending our events.  We are grateful to all of you and for all of you! As usual, our monthly newsletter is packed with information about neighborhood activities as well as useful information on what’s happening in and around Jersey City.  We look forward to seeing you at the next VVPA monthly meeting, which will be held on Tuesday, November 17th, 2015 at 7:00 PM* in The Barrow Mansion, located at 83 Wayne St..  As a general reminder, the VVPA’s monthly meeting schedule is the 3rd Tuesday of the month at 7pm.  See you soon!

President’s Message:

I would like to take a minute to thank the members of the VVPA Board and its Committees for all of their hard work and dedication this year!  Yolanda Foley for keeping our meeting minutes, creating our newsletters and our website procedures manual.  Tom Ogorzalek & Ceci de Leon for creating our Construction committee that organizes developer presentations and crafts our community feedback along with managing the books.  Ben Bernouy & John Ross for their hard work on the creation of our Sponsorship committee and providing snacks at our meetings.   Jeff Agnew for putting pen to paper on complex issues facing our community. Eric Carter for planning and organizing our great social events. Marlene and Tony Sandkamp, both past presidents of distinction, who continue as caretakers of Films in Van Vorst Park, advocating on behalf of VVPA & providing guidance and leadership in too many ways to mention.  Dan Webber for booking the talent at our monthly meetings, setting up and taking down for all of our events, updating our bylaws and putting together our slate for elections.

Our sincere thanks to our outgoing 1st Vice President, Sheridan Bell for his great service and advocacy to his community!  Lucky for us he will remain connected with VVPA in a number of ways, but most importantly as our sommelier for monthly meetings!

All of these people volunteer significant time and effort to ensure our community’s well-being.  Please thank them the next time you cross paths and please consider volunteering for our various committee’s or becoming a block captain to help further our efforts toward building a strong community here in Van Vorst Park.  You are encouraged to read our proposed bylaw changes that will help our Association, the oldest in Jersey City, I’m told, run more efficiently.  We are also proposing the following change in how we conduct elections to maintain board continuity:

  • President:  even year election
  • 1st Vice President: odd year election
  • 2nd Vice President: even year election
  • Treasurer: odd year election
  • Secretary: even year election
  • At-Large #1: odd year election
  • At-Large #2: even year election

If you have attended 3 meetings in the last year, you can vote.

Thank you and Happy Holidays,

Oona

Monthly Meeting Details & Agenda
Whether you are new to the neighborhood or a long-time resident, this is YOUR COMMUNITY.  Stop by and have a glass a wine on us, while you meet neighbors and learn about what’s going on here in your historic neighborhood!This month’s meeting features VVPA 2016 Board Elections, Voting on proposed changes to the VVPA By-Laws, Frank Scalcione from the Jersey City Residents Response Center (JCRRC), and a Developer Presentation for 274 Barrow Street.

Agenda:

7:00pm – Call to Order – President Oona Moore

7:05pm – 7:40pm – Officer & Committee Reports

  • Treasurer Report – Tom Ogorzalek
  • Construction Committee Report – Tom Ogorzalek
  • Bright & Varick Committee Report– Ceci de Leon
  • Events Committee Report – Eric Carter/Marlene Sandkamp

7:40pm – 7:50pm – Election for Board Members

  • Elections officer Dan Webber will conduct the election for the 2016 Board Members of the VVPA.

7:50pm – 8:00pm – Voting on Changes to VVPA By-Laws

  • Dan Webber will review proposed changes to VVPA By-Laws, all VVPA members with voting rights are encouraged to participate.

8:00pm – 8:15pm – New Business

  • Downtown Coalition of Neighborhood Associations
  • Community input is welcomed for any new issues/concerns affecting our community.

8:15pm – 8:45pm – Guest Speakers

  • 8:15 – 8:30 – Frank Scalcione from the JC Residents Response Center
  • 8:30 – 8:45 – 274 Barrow Street Project: proposed 2-story addition to existing single story 3 car garage located on Montgomery St.

8:45pm – 9:00pm – Announcements & Community networking

News You Can Use
As always, we try to bring you as many items of interest that affect our community.  If you have any items that are important to share, please email us atvvpanews@gmail.com.

  • Feral/Stray Cats – If you live or work in the city’s 07302 zip code and need assistance with community cats, Neighborhood Cats wants to help. Neighborhood Cats, an organization specializing in the humane management of outdoor cats, has just launched a targeted Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) project in 07302 and will be fixing 1,000 ferals and strays in this area.  All care will be provided at no charge to participating caretakers. For more information, visit www.NeighborhoodCats.org.
  • Thanksgiving Volunteer Opportunities – This Thanksgiving, please consider helping some of our neighbors who are less fortunate.  Two ways you can do that include donating non-perishable food items which will be given out to Jersey City residents in need through Team Walker – 373 Communipaw Avenue Jersey City, NJ 07304), or donating to AngelaCares, who will be delivering turkey meals on Wednesday Nov. 25th, (please contact Angela and her staff 201-685-7273 for more information).
  • JC Shovels, a volunteer driven initiative started by the Department of Public Works, is looking for new volunteers!  Many seniors throughout the city have difficulty shoveling snow themselves, and often can’t afford for pay someone to do it for them.  This initiative aims at linking volunteers with seniors who are in need of assistance.  For more information, contact Patrick Ambrossi andCynthia Slaughter.
  • In addition to receiving news you can use from VVPA, we encourage all residents to sign up to receive Community News/Updates from your elected officials. Sign up for updates from Candice Osborne andSteven Fulop by clicking on the links provided.
  • Jersey City Resident Response Center is a resource available to all to find answers to commonly asked questions or to report concerns/problems to the City of Jersey City.  In addition to utilizing the JCRRC website, residents may also download the app on their phone (Jersey City RRC Fix-It).  We encourage all to utilize these resources to help resolve issues in their community.
  • Block Captains – The VVPA is looking for community members to become designated Block Captains to help with posting flyers for VVPA events and other important community information on your block; notify MUA to clean out catch basins on a quarterly basis, and generally taking the pulse of community concerns on your block that you will then pass on to VVPA and the committee persons for follow-up.  That’s it – low commitment but important function toward building a better community for all of us.  Please email us avvpanews@gmail.com and give your home street, so we can cover our community.

Community Events
Below is just a partial list of the many, many wonderful events happening in the Van Vorst neighborhood and throughout our city.  If you have a community event that you’d like featured in our newsletter, please reach out to us atvvpanews@gmail.com.

VVPA Events
The events committee would like to thank all of the volunteers who helped with SHAKE YOUR GROOVE THING.  The party was a huge success as a result of those who spent months of planning and those who gave just an hour of their time to help.  We could not do it without all levels of volunteerism.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!

The events committee is looking for volunteers to help plan and execute our next party.  THE RED PARTY will be held in the Barrow Mansion on February 13th, 2016.  We will begin planning in early December, so email vvpanews@gmail.com if you are interested in helping with the Red Party!

The VVPA Events Committee is always looking for volunteers to help plan, decorate and work at VVPA sponsored events.  For those who are interested in volunteering, email vvpanews@gmail.com

Other Jersey City Events
Trim the House Party – December 4th, 7:30pm
Join the Barrow mansion at their Trim the House Party!  Neighbors are invited to come to the mansion, help decorate, and sing Holiday Songs.  Bring a covered dish and enjoy a holiday kick off with neighbors and friends!    
Holiday Open House – December 5th, 7:00pm -10:00pm
Everyone is invited to the Barrow Mansion for a Holiday Open House!!  Food, music, wine and beer will be provided, along with live music.  Neighbors are invited to see the Holiday Decorations, tour the mansion, and enjoy an open house from 7-10.  
Van Vorst Park Farmer’s Market – Saturdays, May – December, 8am
The weekly farmers market, brought to you by the Friends of Van Vorst Park, is still going strong!  The farmer’s market runs on Saturdays from May – December by the Gazebo in Van Vorst Park.  Stop by for some delicious local food and goods!

The Jersey City Project – Project: Market – December 5th & 6th, 11am – 6pm
Join the Jersey City Project at their 2nd annual heated outdoor holiday season market located at City Hall.  For more information, check out their website.

 

Important City Public Meetings
For the full schedule and location details of Important City Public Meetings, please refer to the Public Meetings Calendar found on the City of Jersey City website.  Remember, it’s YOUR COMMUNITY, so stay informed and stay involved!

 

October 2015 VVPA Meeting Minutes

23 Oct 2015, Posted by Yolanda Foley in Minutes

Meeting Minutes – October 20th, 2015

7:10pm – Call to Order – President Oona Moore

  • Appointed Director – Angelo Estrada, founding member of association, will be tasked with outreach
  • Appointed Director – Dermot Ronan – will help w/ VVPA brochure, sponsorship
  • New Position: Past President – Marlene Sandkamp

Election for Board Members – Slate Announcement [Voting Scheduled for November Monthly Meeting]

  • President – Oona Moore
  • 1st VP –Gerry Bakirtjy
  • 2nd VP – Jeff Agnew
  • Treasurer – Tom Ogorzalek
  • Secretary – Yolanda Foley
  • At Large – John Ross
  • At Large – Ben Bernouy

New Business

  • Parking changes proposed by Candice Osborne – Aaron Morrill, Committee Person
      • Concerns/Ideas:
        • Muni-meters on all streets – residents can have stickers and flags for guests;
        • No Change in street cleaning due to accumulated debris from trees causing blocked culverts;
        • Lack of vetting with neighbors for proposed changes;
        • Use of public garages will get more use if muni-meters exist on streets;
        • All changes are dependent on ticket enforcement;
        • Increase in non-resident parking from 2 hour to 3 hours is detrimental to residents, encourages non-residents to use spots residents are competing for;
        • Many huge restaurants coming in – where is the parking that goes along with it? City needs to incorporate issues like this into the master plan.
        • One neighbor’s recommended reading: “The High Cost of Free Parking”, by Donald Shoup.
      • 2nd Reading will be at next City Council Meeting – all are encouraged to attend and voice their opinions
      • Link to Slideshow containing the proposed parking changes can be found here.  Please send all comments you may have on this proposal by November 1st to Candice Osborne (candice@candiceosborne.com) and copy VVPA (vvpanews@gmail.com) to help establish a neighborhood position.

Officer / Committee Reports

Treasurer Report – Tom Ogorzalek

  • Tabled

Construction /Development Committee Report – Gerry Bakirtjy for Tom Ogorzalek

  • 224 Barrow – will come to next meeting, still need to meet w/ Historic Preservation
  • 224 York St – revising drawings
  • 87 Bright St – revising drawings to address our concerns
  • City Hall Redevelopment Project – Civic JC Lawsuit filed lawsuit.  VVPA and Hamilton Park voted to support. Cynthia will go to DCNA whenever we need her to discuss with other associations.
  • Jersey Ave Bridge – Candice replied to DCNA letter. Due to deep DEP issues, bridge is on hold for now. Want new person in traffic/engineering to come to next meeting.
  • Christopher Columbus Project – on hold with developer.

Bright & Varick Committee Report– Ceci de Leon & Marlene Sandkamp

  • Cynthia (lawyer) hasn’t heard from city, would like to send letter to City on our behalf indicating what VVPA would like to see at this lot.
    • Per letter from Rushman (developer), his terms are: 24 units, 12 ground floor parking spaces, 20 year tax abatement; Dismissal with prejudice, but keep automatic approval in place; Formal action saying there was no ambiguity in the plan; JCRA modify contract dates
    • VVPA’s position: 16 units/no parking or 24 units/12 parking spots; Cap development at a height that is consistent with historic neighborhood, No abatement, no automatic approval. Any plan will need to be looked at for massing and density before being approved.
    • Motion made for VVPA’s position as described above, seconded, and majority voted in favor of the VVPA position.

Events Committee Report – Eric Carter/Marlene Sandkamp

  • Halloween Ghoul Bash – Buy tickets online, will also need volunteers throughout the night – contact VVPA to volunteer. Food, drinks, DJ, dancing, prizes at the party. Tell your friends!
  • FREE! Haunted Gazeebo in Park – Bring kids!
  • FREE! Rocky Horror Picture Show on Saturday, 10/24, in Van Vorst Park

 Voting on Changes to VVPA By-Laws

  • Proposed changes to VVPA By-Laws can be found here.  All will have until next meeting for suggestions/changes.  Will discuss and vote next meeting on the proposed changes.

Guest Speakers

Board of Education Candidates Presentation – Elections 11/3/15

    • Everyone has skin in the game: good public schools paves the way for our future leaders. Having a strong education results in strengthened community, good jobs for kids and enriched lives. As homeowners, you need to be concerned with the school budget as some of your taxes pay for schools.Gina Verdibillo – Independent Candidate, Ballot Position 2D
      Vidya Gangadin – Current Board President, Ballot Position 3D
      Marilyn Roman – Current Board Vice President, Ballot Position 4D
      John Reichart – Ballot Position 1D – not in attendance

Announcements & Community networking

  • Committee People working on appointing block Captains
  • Thanks to Sheridan Bell , 1st VP, who is stepping down from the board after his term ends this year.
  • Petition for lighting in Van Vorst Park Dog Park is posted on “Next Door” app/website.  You can also access the link to the petition here – all are encouraged to check out the petition and to join the Next Door application for additional information

Adjournment – 9:05 pm

Proposed Changes to Parking in Jersey City – Let Your Voice Be Heard!

At Tuesday’s VVPA Monthly meeting, the community discussed the Parking changes proposed by Councilwoman Candice Osborne.

  • The general concerns/Ideas centered around the following:
    • Muni-meters on all streets – residents can have stickers and flags for guests;
    • Use of public garages will get more use if muni-meters exist on streets;
    • Increase in non-resident parking from 2 hour to 3 hours is detrimental to residents, encourages non-residents to use spots residents are competing for;
    • No Change in street cleaning due to accumulated debris from trees causing blocked culverts;
    • All changes are dependent on ticket enforcement;
    • Lack of vetting with neighbors for proposed changes;
    • Many huge restaurants coming in – where is the parking that goes along with it? City needs to incorporate issues like this into the master plan.
In addition, a neighbor recommended reading “The High Cost of Free Parking”, by Donald Shoup which provides insight on this topic.

2nd Reading for this parking change proposal will be at the next City Council Meeting – all are encouraged to attend and voice their opinions.  In addition, please click on the Link to the slideshow containing the proposed parking changes, which can be found here.  And, please send all comments you may have on this proposal by November 1st, to Candice Osborne (candice@candiceosborne.com), and copy the VVPA (vvpanews@gmail.com) so we can use the feedback to create an official neighborhood association position on this matter.