Borough of Woodland Park
 
Write to Keith Kazmark at:
Mayor Keith Kazmark
BOROUGH OF
WOODLAND PARK
Municipal Building
5 Brophy Lane
Woodland Park, NJ
07424-2752

Send E-mail to:
kkazmark@wpnj.us
Telephone
973-345-8110


The Mayor’s office door
is open on Mondays for
meetings with any
Borough resident, but
due to his busy
schedule,appointments
are preferable.
 
 
Mayor Keith Kazmark
Keith Kazmark
Mayor
  2014 Messages:

$2 Million In Grants Help Stabilize Taxes
— posted July 16, 2014

Summer News and Events
— posted July 1, 2014

Raising Funds for the Centennial
— posted March 25, 2014


State of the Borough — posted January 16, 2014

 
2013 Messages:
 
No Municipal Tax Increase
— posted July 19, 2013
 
Don’t Drain Our Reservoirs
— posted June 25, 2013

 
  $2M IN GRANTS HELP STABILIZE TAXES —
   As a result of proper financial planning, securing significant grant funding and the reduction of various line items, we have developed a budget this year with a manageable impact on our taxpayers. The municipal increase is $47 on the average home (for the year) and is less than the average increase in both our neighboring communities of Little Falls and Totowa.
   This budget comes on the heels of last year’s budget which delivered no municipal tax increase.
   Please know that the Mayor and Council are only responsible for 25% of the total taxes collected.  We have no control over the school or county budgets which make up the remaining 75% of your tax bill. 
   I would like to thank the Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders for again awarding County Open Space grant funds to the Borough in the amount of $100,000 to complete Dowling Gardens, which now features the Centennial clock tower and will include pathway lighting to be installed this fall.  
   Since I took office in 2012, the Borough has been awarded over $2 million in grant funds.  These dollars allow us to complete projects in town without using the general operating budget and have allowed us to stabilize municipal taxes.
   I wish you an enjoyable summer.  And, as always if you have any questions, or if my office can be of any help to you or your family, please do not hesitate to contact me.

 
 
 
 

WISHING YOU A SAFE AND FUN SUMMER!
   I am very excited about the progress we are making in our town and the events related to the Centennial which continue through the rest of this year.

Ambulance Service & EMS Response:
   As of July 1, the West Paterson First Aid Squad and the Borough of Woodland Park have begun two separate programs to ensure redundancy in ambulance response from 6:00 am to 6:00 pm.
   The WPFAS has entered into an agreement with Fuchs EMS & Medical Transportation to have a unit stationed at the First Aid Squad building for response during the day.  This Fuchs unit will be exclusively available for Woodland Park calls and will provide an immediate response.  As a backup to this unit, the Borough has entered into an agreement with the City of Paterson to provide redundancy should the Fuchs unit assigned to the WPFAS be out on a call.
   This should eliminate the long wait times our residents have experienced, in the past, during the day.  Please know that our outstanding crew of First Aid Squad volunteers will continue to provide service nightly from 6:00 pm to 6:00 am.

Public Spray Park Hours:
   The new spray park at Frank Zaccaria Park, on Rifle Camp Rd., will begin public hours on Tuesday, July 8th.  The spray park will be open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm and Saturdays from 12:00 pm – 4:00 pm, through Labor Day weekend.
   We encourage parents to bring their children down to the spray park to cool off this summer and enjoy this great new facility.  If demand dictates, the Recreation Department will increase public hours of operation.
   Click here for information about
schedule & fees and rules & regulations.

Summer “Concerts in the Park” Series:
   As part of our Centennial celebration, we have added a full season’s worth of Summer “Concerts in the Park”.  Concerts will be held at Dowling Gardens on McBride Ave. on Wednesday evenings starting at 7:00 pm and ending at 8:30 pm (with the exception of the July 30th Children’s concert, which will start at 6:30 pm).

The schedule for the summer concerts is as follows:
July 9th - Sunset Soundz (Music from the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s, sponsored by the Woodland Park Business Association)
July 16th - Sick Star Nation (Pop/rock/dance music)
July 23rd - Joe Caroselli & Masterpiece (A “musical buffet” of legendary songs from the 1940s to today)
July 30th - The Hums *special start time 6:30 pm*
(Children’s concert “Movement & Music” for ages 6 months to 6 years, sponsored by the Alfred H. Baumann Free Public Library)
August 6th - Exit Row Band (Mixture of classic rock & blues, today’s hits on the radio, and their own material)
August 13th - The Late Show (The Hoffman family band with a variety of music from the ‘50s through the ‘90s)
August 20th - The Bucket List (Mix of ‘50s, ‘60s, ‘70s music)

Municipal Alliance “Movies Under the Stars” Series:
   This year, the Woodland Park Municipal Alliance Against Drug & Alcohol Abuse sponsored six films in their “Movies Under the Stars” series.  Each movie begins at dusk at Memorial Field on Thursday evenings.  The June 26th movie was “How to Train Your Dragon”.

The remaining shows are listed below:
 July 10th - “Frozen”
July 17th - “The Lego Movie”
July 24th - “Space Jam”
July 31st - “Annie”
August 7th - “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
   The Alliance will also hold their “National Night Out, Against Crime & Drugs” on Tuesday, August 5th on Memorial Drive.  Please join us for this fun event!

Baumann Library Summer Reading Program:
   The Alfred H. Baumann Free Public Library is once again sponsoring their popular “Summer Reading Program”.  Please sign up your child today for this important opportunity at:
        http://www.abwplibrary.org/baumann/summerreadingregistration.asp
   Promoting literacy in the community is key to our children’s successful education.  Reading and learning should not only take place from September through June!  Please read to your youngsters and encourage them to read each night before bed time.  The benefits to them are endless!
   Enjoy your summer and please take advantage of the events and programs listed above.  Woodland Park has a lot to offer this summer!

 
 
 
  REQUESTING CONTRIBUTIONS —
   2014 brings with it the 100th Anniversary of our Borough! The Centennial Committee and the West Paterson Volunteer Fire Department have been working hard to organize many events which recognize our proud past and celebrate our promising future.
   Reaching 100 years as a Borough is a milestone that will be properly celebrated. Our rich history as West Paterson must never be forgotten. The legacies of great community leaders from our first Mayor, Anthony Ferrary, to long-time Mayor Alfred H. Baumann live on in our town’s memory and are being passed on today by all those who continue to contribute to our community as we move forward as Woodland Park.
   On May 17th, we will kick-off with our grand parade and picnic. During the summer months, we will have weekly concerts in Dowling Gardens. On September 20th, we will hold an historical trolley ride through the town. And, we will wrap up the year with our Centennial Gala on November 9th at the Westmount Country Club.
   With this in mind, I am making my final request for assistance with our Centennial Celebration. We continue to aggressively fundraise to offset the costs of these events. Fairway Market has agreed to be our Lead Sponsor, but additional financial help is needed. We are asking our local residents, business community and our corporate friends to join in our efforts to help fund this celebration.
   Please consider making a donation today. No amount is too small! You may also place an order for the Centennial Commemorative Book, or make your contribution by placing an ad.
   If you would prefer to simply make a donation, a check made payable to W.P. Centennial can be mailed to Centennial Donations, Borough of Woodland Park, 5 Brophy Lane, Woodland Park, NJ 07424-2752.
   Please know that your help will go a long way to making our 100th Anniversary – a once in a lifetime event – something to truly remember.

 
 
 
  STATE OF THE BOROUGH, Jan. 8, 2014 —
   Let me begin by thanking all the volunteers who have been sworn into office tonight and those who serve on all our municipal boards and committees. To all our volunteers from the Fire Department, to our FAS members, to our coaches at the Boys and Girls Club, to our HSA members and many other groups in town, you are the backbone of our community. And, I applaud your unselfish efforts to make Woodland Park better.
 
 
Click to watch Mayor Keith Kazmark's State of the Boarough.
Click to watch video
   As we begin 2014, our Borough begins a very special year.
   Whether we have been called West Paterson or Woodland Park, 2014 marks the 100th year since the incorporation of our town: a town we all can continue to be proud of. Our nick name, "a small town, with a big heart," still applies. And, it’s my goal, and the goal of this Council, to keep that spirit alive and well.
 
     Speaking of community spirit, we will be hosting a 3-hour parade down McBride Avenue on May 17th.  So, mark your calendars. The parade will be followed by a picnic celebration, and fireworks will end the night. This along with a historical trolley ride, a series of summer concerts and a Gala at the Westmount Country Club will make up the yearlong events marking our Centennial.
   This celebration has not come without a lot of hard work by the Centennial Committee and the members of the West Paterson Volunteer Fire Department. I'm proud of what we have put together and simply can't wait for the events to begin.
   I would like to welcome back Council Members Joe Spinelli, Gary Holloway and Rita Pascrell. Their commitment to this community is second to none and I am proud to have them on our team. Also, congratulations to Councilman Spinelli on being selected by his colleagues to serve as Council President during our Centennial Year.
   While 2014 will hold a lot of joy for our community, there is still much work to be done. Over the past month I have worked with the Council to set our priorities for the year ahead.
   We will begin the year working to finalize a proposal brought forward by the West Paterson First Aid Squad to allow them to become independent from the Borough while at the same time increasing ambulance response time and providing daytime coverage. The details of this plan will be presented at a Council meeting in the next month or two by Captain Dillon and the leadership of the West Paterson First Aid Squad. Their response is sometimes under life or death circumstances, and we all recognize the need for a more immediate response in an emergency.
   As we have discussed over the past few months, the Governing Body will examine the need for a re-assessment of property in town. The final decision will be made following the next round of tax appeals due on April 1st. By summer, we should have a handle on the exposure the Borough faces and will make a determination as to the need for a re-assessment. This is similar to the action taken by Little Falls and Totowa, three to four years after their revaluations. Again, I will state that this is NOT another revaluation; there are no inspections, unless requested by the property owner. Comparable sales are used to provide an accurate assessment. The re-assessment in the most simplistic terms is a town-wide tax appeal.
   The Borough will continue to oppose the Passaic Valley Water Commission’s plan to drain the New Street and Great Notch Reservoirs here in Woodland Park. While we may still end up in litigation with PVWC, we will also seek and discuss alternatives to their plan. Exploring the environmental impact, the possibility of working with the City of Newark to use the Ridge Road Reservoir in Cedar Grove to save the Great Notch Reservoir and working with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection will all be pursued in the next 30 days. Trust that we are not looking for a street fight here, but prudently seeking solutions to a mandate that will not scar our mountain top or affect our resident’s property values.
   I remain pleased that this Council and I were able to deliver a budget in 2013 which included no municipal tax increase. By month’s end, we should have the year-end numbers for 2013 which will provide an accurate picture of where we will be with the 2014 budget. I am pleased that in 2013 alone, the Borough was awarded $1.4 million in grant awards and $2.5 million in pending applications. This was done through the efforts of our grant writers at Millennium Strategies and our Administrator, Mr. Kevin Galland.
One such grant award was for the new Centennial clock at Dowling Park, funded through the Passaic County Open Space Trust Fund. This clock will be dedicated in May and will recognize the Centennial of our town for years to come. To the critics of this project, I’ll say this. If we did not pursue this funding, one of the other 15 municipalities in Passaic County would have received it. I also stand by the addition of the clock as I believe it brings an element of class to our main roadway and will complement our streetscape efforts along McBride Avenue.
   On Monday evening, I directed Mr. Galland and our Board of Health Secretary Ms. Courtney Fitzpatrick to begin to explore a new possibility of a shared service for Health Department services. I’m hopeful that their solicitation of proposals will result in new opportunities with a possible cost savings to the taxpayer.
   With regard to our attempts to increase revenue the Council authorized a request for proposal for a potential billboard on Route 80 eastbound. We will be meeting with residents on January 20th to discuss their thoughts on this proposal and will weigh any community concerns with potential revenue we would see from this effort. The Council and I welcome resident’s opinions as we are looking for this to be an open and well-vetted discussion.
   Keeping with our commitment to improve our parks and fields, we are currently gathering quotes to complete our renovations to Memorial Field which will include a walk path around the facility, new clay on all three baseball and softball diamonds, new trash and recycling receptacles and a new illuminated flag pole.
   At the old School #1, we are planning to replace the remaining outdated fencing, replace the current backstop, provide new bleachers and also replace the field clay.
   I’m pleased to report that we are close to completion at Dowling Gardens. With the addition of the Centennial Clock, we will also be completing the lighting project so the park can accommodate evening events, such as our summer concert series. I’m also very happy that, through the efforts of Optimum, we have a Mobile WiFi HotSpot at Dowling, at no cost to the Borough. We will now be working to make that a reality in some of our other parks, as well.
   This Council will continue to be aggressive when it comes to flooding. This year we will complete the process in developing our Community Rating System which will reduce the flood insurance premiums our residents pay. Tonight, Councilwoman Kallert, a resident of the flood area here in town was appointed to the Regional Flood Board a position I know she will excel in. This year, we will also continue to ensure that the flashboards that were previously in place near the Great Falls in Paterson remain removed, as I believe their removal has significantly reduced the height of the Passaic River and reduced the possibility of future flood events. Quite frankly, it’s something that should have been done a long time ago.
   In the last few weeks we have also started to reach out to residents in the flood area who have expressed some desire to accept a buyout of their property through one of the federal or state programs available. We will pursue this in a smart and thoughtful manner so as not to scar our neighborhoods as we work to return some of these areas to open space.
   We will continue to keep up with our infrastructure. This year, we plan to begin the installation of sewers and water lines in the area of Oak Ridge Road and Elizabeth Lane. These areas are still reliant on septic systems and after meeting with the residents who do not have access to public sewers last year, this area has been targeted to begin these projects.
   Our road re-surfacing program this year will include, Overmount Avenue which is partially funded by a State DOT grant, Sunset (between Highview and Meriline), Ryle Park Avenue, Passaic Avenue and Rockaway Avenue. Should funds be available, we will also consider re-surfacing Andrews Drive behind the Kohl’s/Fairway Shopping Center. Mr. Galland is working with our Borough Engineer, Nordan Murphy, in discussing with Totowa the possibility of developing one bid spec and bidding the two town’s road projects together to cut costs.
   We are awaiting the spring announcement of DOT grant funding. We have applied for our McBride Avenue Streetscape project which will commence at Glover Avenue. We are hopeful that the State will award us these dollars to begin the process of beautifying our main thoroughfare in town. This initial funding will also open doors to other grant opportunities to move this project along.
   My office will continue to press our State Legislators regarding the need for sound barriers along Brophy Lane, Vernon Court and Greenway Lane. State Senator Kevin O’Toole is aware of our need and visited both sites last spring. This year I plan to again visit the sites with our Assembly Representatives and with our Congressman to have them see firsthand what our residents deal with and that this job needs to be completed once and for all.
   I have directed Mr. Galland and Mr. Galbraith to create a plan for improvements to the Recycling Center. The condition of the center, especially after Hurricane Irene has deteriorated, and the Council has funded the improvements through a bond ordinance introduced and adopted last year. We need to create a place where recycling is encouraged, which provides easy access to our residents and is simply user-friendly.
   Councilman Holloway will be working with our Planner, Katherine Gregory, to complete our Master Plan Ordinances which will help us better plan for the future. These new ordinances address our downtown, parking issues in our neighborhoods, future development and the proper zoning and uses for different areas of town.
I’m happy to report that we will be introducing the oversized truck, parking ordinance. As I said in December, these oversized trucks being parked, especially in the Westmount Apartments have been the single biggest complaint I’ve received over the past 8 months. And, I’ve received a significant number of e-mails about this issue generated from the recent Today Paper article.
   I’ve asked our IT coordinator to solicit proposals for the re-design of our municipal website. I’m proud that Woodland Park was the first of the towns in the area to create an information-packed and frequently-updated municipal website over 12 years ago. Our website is now in need of an upgrade. Technology now permits website interaction with Facebook, Twitter and emergency alerts. It is time we took the step to make an upgrade while still allowing our internal staff here at the municipal building the ability to update the site instantaneously when it comes to content. I’m projecting a July 1st launch, once we have reviewed the proposals submitted and made the best decision about our future site.
   As you can see, there is a lot to do. The Council committees will also be working to address the needs of the Departments they work with. The local Boards will be conducting their important work, as well. From the Library Board developing a long-term plan, to the Board of Health sharing services to the Planning and Zoning Boards considering future development, 2014 will be a year to roll up our sleeves and make the absolute best decisions for Woodland Park.
   It has been an awesome personal and professional honor to sit here in this seat and serve as your Mayor for the past two years. I truly love this job and each day try to be the absolute best Mayor I can be. However, it is only with your help that we can be successful.
   I wish each of you a Happy New Year. Happy 100th Anniversary West Paterson/Woodland Park.
   And, I look forward to a productive and prosperous year for our borough. God bless you and thank you.
 
     
  NO MUNICIPAL TAX INCREASE —
   Please know that controlling property taxes is the main focus and priority of this Mayor and Council.
   As such, we are pleased to present a budget this year which has NO MUNICIPAL TAX INCREASE. As a result of proper planning, an increase in construction permit revenue, the awarding of significant grant funding and a reduction in the overall salary and wages, we have developed a budget for the town with no additional impact to our taxpayers.
   As you are well aware, property taxes are an issue throughout New Jersey.  We are one of the few municipalities in the state which has been able to deliver a flat tax levy without gimmicks or one-year fixes.
   Please know that the Mayor and Council are only responsible for 25% of the total taxes collected.  We have no control over the school, county or library budgets which make up the remaining 75% of your tax bill.

Grant Funding & Shared Services:
   I would like to thank the Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders for again awarding the Borough grant funds in the amount of $150,000 for the spray park, located at Frank Zaccaria Park, which was recently opened.
   In 2012, the Borough was awarded over $450,000 in grant funds, and we currently have over $2.5 million in pending applications. These funds allow us to complete projects in town without using the general operating budget and have contributed to Governing Body being able to deliver no municipal tax increase this year.
   I wish you an enjoyable summer and, as always if you have any questions or if my office can be of any help to you or your family, please do not hesitate to contact me.
 
     
  DON’T DRAIN OUR RESERVOIRS —
   You may have read several newspaper articles over the past year regarding the Passaic Valley Water Commission’s (PVWC) plan to drain three reservoirs: two in the Borough of Woodland Park and one in the City of Paterson.
   When this issue first emerged, the Woodland Park Borough Council adopted Resolution R12-197 on June 20, 2012 opposing such a project based both on the increased cost to ratepayers across the PVWC service area and on the tremendous aesthetic impact it would have on our town.
   Thankfully, the Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders and a significant number of other municipalities have also adopted resolutions supporting our position.
   The cost of this expensive endeavor will be passed on to the ratepayers in each of the municipalities serviced directly or indirectly by the PVWC.   At a time when taxpayers are struggling and unemployment rates are high in our state, this is not only an ill-conceived, but poorly-timed, project. It should be postponed until the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reviews the rules and regulations regarding this matter. Those regulations are scheduled to be re-administered in 2016.
   Locally, we are concerned that the scenic area along Rifle Camp Road, which provides a rural feel when traveling our Borough, would be destroyed and replaced with concrete water storage tanks at both the New Street and Great Notch Reservoirs. Homeowners along Rifle Camp Road enjoy large lot sizes and structures, set back homes and, in some cases, water front property with beautiful landscapes right across the street. My administration, along with the Council, has serious concerns about reduced property values and the potential loss on investment for these residents, if such a plan becomes a reality.
   On behalf of the Council, I am respectfully asking each of you, as residents in the PVWC service area, to write a letter or send an e-mail to both the PVWC and our State and Federal elected officials opposing this costly and premature project.

Contact information for those officials is listed below:
 
 
Congressman Rodney P. Frelinghuysen
11th Congressional District

30 Schuyler Place, 2nd Floor
Morristown, NJ  07960
Phone:  973-984-0711
Fax:  973-292-1569
Congressman.Frelinghuysen@mail.house.gov

Senator Kevin J. O’Toole
40th Legislative District

155 Rt. 46 West
Wayne, NJ  07470
Phone:  973-237-1360
Fax:  973-237-1364
Senotoole@njleg.org

Assemblyman David Russo
40th Legislative District

22 Paterson Ave.
Midland Park, NJ  07432
Phone:  201-444-9719
AsmRusso@njleg.org
Congressman William J. Pascrell, Jr.
9th Congressional District

200 Federal Plaza, Suite 500
Paterson, NJ  07505
Phone:  973-523-5152
Fax:  973-523-0637
bill.pascrell@mail.house.gov

Assemblyman Scott T. Rumana
40th Legislative District

155 Rt. 46 West
Wayne, NJ  07470
Phone:  973-237-1362
Fax:  973-237-1367
AsmRumana@njleg.org

Joseph A. Bella, Executive Dir.
Passaic Valley Water Commission

1525 Main Avenue
Clifton, NJ  07011
Phone:  973-340-4300
jabella@pvwc.com
 
     Your efforts will complement the resolutions adopted by our neighboring towns and the support we have received from both The Record and Herald News Editorial Boards.
   Your support in fighting this plan is appreciated.  Should you need additional information please contact my office, and we will assist you in any way possible.
 
     
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