Clinton Township Newsletter

January 2013

Clinton Township Newsletter, Clinton New Jersey, May 2013 Issue

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C L I N TO N TOW N S H I P N ews l e t t e r ® "It was my kind of film for my kind of people .... A film to tell the weary, the disheartened, and the disillusioned... that no man is a failure! ...that each man's life touches so many other lives. And that if he isn't around it would leave an awful hole. A film that said, 'Heads up, fella. No man is poor who has one friend. Three friends and you're filthy rich.' ... I wanted to shout, "You are the salt of the earth... 'It's a Wonderful Life' is my memorial to you!' " – Frank Capra "Giving Thanks for BFF's" by MAYOR'S COLUMN Ruth Keesing K e v i n C i m e i , M ay o r J a n u a r y I don't know why I've waited over 30 years to write a column about one of the most important things in my life. FRIENDS! Maybe I've taken them for granted over the years. Friends from high school, college, friends who became bridesmaids and maids of honor at my two weddings, friends whom I met in the most unpredictable circumstances. (I met Vivian while doing a morning walk-a-bout on Haytown Road decades ago.) I've known Caroline since kindergarten and, although her legs failed to support me while doing a "flying angel" in a high school gym class (resulting in a broken collar bone!)she has remained a supportive friend for over 80 years. Other friends were from breast cancer support groups, former business colleagues, church, couples' clubs, volunteer groups and so many as a bonus from writing and publishing the Clinton Township Newsletter and from publishing my book. Some are many years younger than I am and I learn a lot from them. We share our trials and tribulations. We share books, movies, new restaurants and meat markets and where to get the best Jersey corn with the sweetest kernels. I even remain good friends with several former lovers! Who needs a psychologist's couch when I can share triumphs and problems with men and women who listen to me when I wail or win. I make notes on my calendar when they are on vacation, their birthdays and surgeries. We "do" lunch together and send e-mails and telephone each other regularly lest some noteworthy event should occur without my knowledge. Our friendships are on a level playing field so we interact comfortably talking, listening, sharing, laughing and crying. I try not to stay in touch with folks who make me sad. I once had a neighbor who complained constantly about her plight in life (which, all things considered, was 99 % better than most). She groaned each morning about having to face another day. Needless to say, our friendship was short-lived. As it turned out, so was she. No one slogs through life without turmoil. And, at my age, we've all faced assorted illnesses, deaths of loved ones, aching joints and sagging body parts. But my friends and I are in it together and we get older at the same pace for the most part. I believe we all live longer with proper diet, exercise, vitamin supplements, good books and social interactions. I value my wonderful friends more than a winning lottery ticket. You know who you are. May our social interactions continue to be happy highlights in our lives... of course, I wouldn't say no to a winning lottery ticket. J a n u a r y 2013 As we start the New Year, it's always nice to look back on last year and the challenges and accomplishments we faced before looking ahead to the ones in the coming year. As I think back on 2012, I am grateful for our volunteers and our Township employees, particularly during Superstorm Sandy. We should be proud and thankful for the tireless efforts of all who helped through that demanding period – our police, fire, EMS, Department of Public Works, CERT, OEM, County and State Government, our Regional and Township Schools, our many businesses who helped residents, the neighbors helping neighbors, even the utilities and the out of state workers who came here to help our Township. I heard and saw many instances of selfless behavior during this trying period. We should be thankful that we were spared worse devastation and help and pray for those who lost so much more. At the same time, we did learn some things that we and others could do to improve, if we ever have future events of this type. Clearly, for our part of rural New Jersey, we need better communication and support from our utility companies. Another future objective is to review our communication and backup processes. As we move past Superstorm Sandy, we're making a special effort to collect brush as well as our Annual Fall Leaf Pickup. Please be patient, as we have a lot of work to do, but no more time! We have implemented some overtime and added shifts to get this done, but we will likely take longer than last year in getting all leaves and brush collected. In 2012, the Council continued to provide the services our residents want and expect, while keeping the tax levy well under cap. The Council is very focused on keeping taxes down and has been so for years. We also are financially sound in all respects. Importantly, we added two more Towns to our Court – Clinton and High Bridge. This is a real validation of the past decision and model we built, one based on private sector concepts like short term fixed cost contracts, mutually beneficial incentives, simplified governance (ie, not everyone votes on everything). I am pleased with the success of our court and the recognition that we can save other towns significant costs by joining our court, while being a net positive to our taxpayers. In fact, we are the State-Approved Custodian for all the old NH Court cases and files. We continue to improve our Township roads. In 2012, we began the rebuilding of Lilac Drive from Twin Oaks to the Township line at Readington. This should be completed soon, weather permitting. Next year we will continue with our road plans. Looking ahead to 2013, we continue to face a challenging economy and the need to watch our taxes and spending. We'll be looking to make more progress on our Affordable Housing plans and possibly the Highlands. We're working on improvements to our Township website ensure easier electronic interaction with the Township and its departments. We promise to do our best to make Clinton Township exceptional. I wish you and your families a Healthy and Happy New Year, Kevin Cimei, Mayor, Clinton Township See page 7 of this Newsletter for Christmas Tree Disposal information and to find out how to sign up for Clinton Township Web News. 2 0 1 3 1

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