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Posted on: April 29, 2019

April 2019

NEWSLETTER

New Website

On March 26, Berkeley Heights Township launched Phase One of its new website, with a new name: BerkeleyHeights.gov, designed to give residents easier access to Township information and services. Created by the Berkeley Heights Communications Committee working closely with Township employees, the new website offers a modern, resident-focused design that is easily accessible via mobile. Residents will immediately benefit from a new search function that makes it easier to find information site-wide and a new calendar that residents can set to show only the types of events they’re interested in and receive notifications for. 

Mayor's Corner Update

Please see Mayor Devanney's April Update in TAPinto Berkeley Heights. The Mayor welcomes feedback and ideas for improving our town; please feel free to email her directly at adevanney@bhtwp.com

Mayor Devanney was also interviewed by Jill Horner on Comcast Newsmakers, to talk about economic development, a “Shop BH” program, benefits of shared services and more!

Message from the Township Administrator

Pothole you want to report? Downed trees in a street? Something else that needs the Township's attention? PLEASE report issues as you see them. Those submissions get funneled to the proper department head so they can attend to them. That is the sure way we will know of your issue and address it as efficiently and effectively as possible. Thank you

Notes from Town Council

Check out the new column by the Berkeley Heights Communications Committee, Notes from Town Council, which provides cliff notes into what your elected officials are doing - including potential & current initiatives as well as past and upcoming community events.

2019 Annual Budget - Introduced & Available

The Township introduced their 2019 Annual Budget at the Town Council meeting on April 23. It will be discussed at the May 7 Town Council meeting and and adopted at the May 29 Town Council meeting.

Big Grant Received for Road Improvements!

Great News! Berkeley Heights is the recipient of $460,000 in funding from the Department of Transportation (NJDOT) Municipal Aid Program. This effort is the result of a grant application completed in 2018 for fiscal year 2019. This money will help fund road improvements in the Woodruff Elementary school area- Briarwood East/West, Fay, Fawn, & Ridgewood Place.

Safe Streets to Transit - Transit Grant Received!

More big news! Berkeley Heights received $410,000, the largest Safe Streets to Transit Grant distributed in New Jersey. The Berkeley Heights SSTS grant application was spearheaded in 2018 by Councilwoman Jeanne Kingsley.

Drainage Grant

For the fifth year in a row, Berkeley Heights received an Infrastructure grant from Union County, $55K for fiscal year 2019. The county first started the Infrastructure & Municipal Aid Grant in 2015 and Berkeley Heights has been the recipient since its inception.  These funds will go toward some much-needed drainage work, for various pocket projects around town, including on Pine Grove, Cedar Green, Scott, and Plainfield (areas across Springfield Ave).

Bulk Pick Up

The contract with the selected vendor was approved at the April 23 Council meeting and the schedule for bulk pick up is now set for May! Please be sure your junk is curbside the night BEFORE the first date of your section's scheduled pickup. Please follow these guidelines for pick up. If you're not sure which section you live in, check our online lookup.

Spring Chipping

The Township started a Spring chipping program on April 8, 2019. All branches must be out for pickup on the first day of the schedule for your section. Absolutely no branches will be collected once a section is completed; please follow these guidelines for pickup. There will be no exceptions to the published schedule. If you're not sure which section you live in, check our online lookup.

Municipal Complex

Please check here for regular monthly updates and photos.

Recycling Schedule

REMINDER: The Township is now divided into two sections for recycling pickup. Snyder Avenue/Horseshoe Road is the dividing line between the East and West sides of Berkeley Heights. Pickup will occur every other Wednesday for streets East of Snyder Ave (toward Summit) and every other Thursday for streets West of Snyder Avenue (toward Warren). Both sides of Snyder and Horseshoe will be picked up on Wednesdays.

Full 2019 schedule with East & West dates is online.

Specific questions can be sent directly to Giordano at (service@gogreengiordano.com or call 1-800-216-2250) for the most up-to-date information. Read a summary of Recycling "Do's and Don'ts".

May 2019 Recycling Dates:

  • EAST: May 1, 15, 29
  • WEST: May 2, 16, 30

Township Council Meeting Schedule

Township Council meetings take place at Town Hall (29 Park Avenue) at 7 pm.

Upcoming Township Council meetings:

  • May 7, 29 (Municipal Budget will be discussed and adopted on May 29)
  • June 11, 25

Upcoming Planning Board meetings:

  •  May 1, 15
  • June 5

Boards/Committees/Commission Updates

Communications Committee

Coffee and Conversation - Sunday, May 19

Communication Committee is hosting the year's first Coffee and Conversation on Sunday, May 19 from 3pm to 4pm at the BH YMCA as a way for residents to talk to Township Committee members in a more informal setting. Mayor Angie Devanney, and council members Peter Bavoso and Alvaro Medeiros will be available to chat and answer questions.

Berkeley Heights Recycling Task Force

The Mayor recently established a Berkeley Heights Recycling Task Force at the February 19 Town Council meeting.

It is easy to recognize that the town-wide recycling services offered by our township benefit the environment. Unfortunately, the cost of this benefit has risen dramatically worldwide. China, the world’s largest importer of recyclables, enacted policies that blocked the acceptance of certain materials and set stringent contamination requirements on others. This caused a disruption in the global market that lowered the profitability of these materials. Companies that provide recycling services have passed the increased operating costs down to the municipalities that require them. Last year in Berkeley Heights, the public bidding process for our township's curbside recycling collection yielded only one respondent and Berkeley Heights suffered a 155% percent increase from the previous year.

This cost increase provided the impetus for the Mayor and Township Council to create the Recycling Task Force. Our primary mission is addressing and exploring options for mitigating this cost. Some of the measures have been studying the programs of other communities, seeking other providers and markets, exploring the possibility of partnerships, and researching grants. We would also like to find ways to enhance the services that are offered.

To help us in this endeavor, we will be posting a short survey on the township website that asks you, the residents of Berkeley Heights, questions that will guide the paths that we take. The survey will be posted on May 1st and closed on May 15th. A link to the survey will be advertised on the website homepage as well as shared through email and social media. We encourage you to share your feedback and appreciate the time you are giving to help us.

Berkeley Heights Environmental Commission:

The Environmental Commission is hard at work. As residents kick-off spring landscaping, the Commission has prepared guidelines for avoiding Tree Volcanoes and tips for fertilizing your lawn.

Green Team: Each year, the Township must submit the members of the municipal green team to Sustainable Jersey. The Green Team must be approved by the Township Council through a resolution. The Commission is currently recruiting members. Responsibilities vary with Sustainable Jersey Actions.  More information on Sustainable Jersey can be found on their website.

Community Garden: On April 13, members of the Berkeley Heights Learning Community Garden literally broke ground at the Littell-Lord Historic Farmstead. They unloaded and assembled frames for 29 raised beds, in which they will grow vegetables. One bed was left un-built in as the community garden is expecting a bed on legs for handicapped gardeners from a Union County Means Green grant. Two beds are still available. To apply for a bed, please email EC@bhtwp.com.

Three Public Clean Ups Rid Berkeley Heights of Hundreds of Pounds of Litter: As a result of three litter clean ups open to the public on March 17 (Passaic River Park), March 24 (Snyder Ave and Snyder Ave Park), and April 7 (Watchung Way), Berkeley Heights is now cleaner, due to the hundreds of pounds of litter that have been removed from its parks and streets. Thanks to everyone who participated!

These three events prove that grassroots clean up efforts involving volunteers from our community can make a big difference in helping our town to become greener and cleaner. For more information about these three clean ups, as well as information about other events and activities in which you can participate, please visit the Sustainable Berkeley Heights website , the BHEC website, and the DBC website.

Grants Committee

The Township has a new Grants Committee, approved at the April 23rd Town Council meeting. The Committee will work to research and help write grant applications working with Township employees. If you are interested in joining the committee, please submit an application. The committee needs researchers, writers, copywriters, graphic designers, a bookkeeper or accountant and a data manager.

Upcoming Community Events:

Don’t miss out on these upcoming community events such as:

  • Art For The Park: Hosted by The Peppertown Park Committee, the fundraiser event will be held at Columbia Middle School on Saturday May 11th, 2019 from 12pm -5pm.
  • GL PTO Spring Clothing Drive: Save the date for GLHS PTO's semi-annual clothing drive on May 11. They are accepting clothing, sneakers, shoes, hats, scarves, gloves, towels, bedding, dolls, and more.
  • The 18th Annual Mother’s Day 5K: Hosted by the Wharton Institute for the Performing Arts, the 5K will be held on Sunday, May 12th from 8am-10:30am at Memorial Field in Berkeley Heights. 
  • Anniversary Party:The Senior Citizens of Berkeley Heights are holding their yearly Anniversary Party on May 23. This is when they honor all couples celebrating their 50th, 55th, 60th, 65th or 75th wedding anniversary.
  • Summer Block Party: On Sunday, June 9, the Berkeley Heights Business and Civic, in conjunction with the BH Recreation Department, will be hosting the inaugural Downtown Summer Block Party from 1 to 4 p.m.

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