FROM THE OFFICE OF THE MAYOR
Eric F. Wilsusen
Here is wishing all our residents a very Happy, Healthy, and blessed New Year!
First, I need to start my Winter message by thanking our Economic Development Committee and Recreation Department for a VERY successful Winter Stroll that took place on December 2 & 3 at Camp Jefferson. This was the first time this event was held in the community, and the committee and its chairs, Kim Finnegan, Grace Rhinesmith, and “DJ” Earl Heller, knocked it out of the park. The event was a victim of its success as many came, and the crowd was certainly bigger than anticipated. Plans are already in the pipeline to address some of the traffic issues and make it an even more successful event next year.
The end of the year is always a good time to reflect on the past year. As part of our 10-year capital improvement plan for road improvements, our Public Works Department worked hard all summer to complete drainage projects throughout the Longwood Lake area. We completed milling/paving of Maryann Drive, 2nd Lt. Wroblewski, Lorna Lane, Mackenzie Lane, Longwood Lake Road, Forest Ridge Terrace, Squirrelwood Drive, Bear Drive, Eagle Drive, Fox Road, Partridge Run, Moose Drive, Elk & E. Elk Drive, Redmans Drive, Indian Drive, Solar Road, Valley Road, Aldrin Drive and a portion of Taylor Road. Minnisink Road was milled/paved this summer through an NJ DOT Grant, the tree canopy was cut back, and some drainage and new guide rails were installed. Last, we cape-sealed Sparta Mtn. Road, Preston Lake Road, Upper Lake Road, Hidden Hills Road, and some of Taylor Road. As part of New Jersey Natural Gas installation program, roads in Lake Shawnee were paved, including West Shawnee Trail, Great Sun, Mountainview Trail, Tecumseh Ridge, Shenandoah Crescent, Shawnee Parkway, West Lakeview, Pathfinder, North Parkway, South Parkway, Highview Trail, Highview Terrace, Duck Point Mallard Road.
Other capital projects completed this past year include the purchase of Police vehicles, Public Works truck/equipment replacements, ongoing generator upgrades for our essential infrastructure, guide rail replacement, and ongoing drainage improvements. A new fuel tank and pump system was constructed in partnership with the Board of Education, installing a new tank above ground. The demolition of the Creative Playground was completed in late fall. The new and improved Creative Playground will be installed in the Spring. The Lakeside Turf Field is under construction with the removal of the turf and recycling of the rubber beads. The new turf is currently being placed on the field.
New Jersey Natural Gas has finished installing gas mains in the Lake Forest area, Boa Vista, Canal Crossing and Swan Lanes, Horace & Clifton Road, West Elro area, and Dover-Milton Road area. Currently, New Jersey Natural Gas is finishing the Schoolhouse Road and Weldon Road areas and is in the process of completing home hookups. We are waiting to hear from New Jersey Natural Gas on where their next main installation will begin. We do advocate to New Jersey Natural Gas for all of Jefferson to be gassed up!
In January, my administration will submit our 2024 budget to our town council, and we will schedule our budget meetings. We all try our best to be fiscally conservative with our taxpayer dollars.
Please help our plow crews during storms; per our ordinances, there is no parking overnight November 1 to April 1 or when streets are snow-covered, and please do not blow snow into the roadway. I can assure you that our plow operators don’t purposely plow snow into your driveway; it is unavoidable!
Happy New Year to All!