Mobile COVID-19 and Antibody Testing Available: A Bergen County mobile CVD-19 testing site will be available on Wednesday, July 1st, in the Ramsey municipal lot across from Ramsey Borough Hall, located at 33 North Central. The testing site will be open to all Upper Saddle River, Allendale and Ramsey residents and borough employees. The testing site will have saliva and swab tests and antibody testing for those who qualify. The testing site will have limited parking. Parking will also be available at the NJ Transit lot on Main Street. Priority will be given to first responders and essential workers from 9:00 – 10:00am. Testing of the general public will be from 10:00am – 2:30pm. Please bring your driver’s license and health insurance card. The county will cover the cost of the tests of those without health insurance. Thank you to Ramsey and the County of Bergen for this opportunity for our residents.
As Governor Murphy lifts restrictions and closures, residents are urged to continue to take precautions and be as careful as possible in order to continue our positive trends. Wearing a mask when going out, washing hands frequently, socializing outdoors rather than indoors, avoiding large crowds and staying home when not feeling well are all proven measures to limit spread and exposure. While we must work and need to enjoy social and leisure activities, the more precautions we can take, the more likely these things are to continue. The reopening of our state certainly does not mean COVID-19 has been cured or could not resurface in larger numbers, as we are witnessing in other states. Let’s all be smart and stay safe and healthy. Each one of us plays an integral role in our community’s overall good health.
Upper Saddle River’s Affordable Housing Round 3: On Friday, June 26, 2020, Judge Farrington presided over the Borough of Upper Saddle River’s Fairness Hearing. The hearing was conducted virtually due to the quarantine. Court appointed Master, Frank Banisch; Borough Planner, Joseph Burgis; Borough Attorney, Robert Regan; Special Counsel, Ed Buzak; Borough Administrator, Ted Preusch; and Mayor Joanne Minichetti participated, as did representatives from Fair Share Housing. Judge Farrington approved the settlement, recommended by Banisch, and agreed upon by Fair Share Housing and the Borough, stating, “The settlement safeguards the rights of those needing protection and fulfills the constitutional obligation of the Borough.”
Englewood Cliffs had its immunity from “builders’ remedy” lawsuits filed by developers eliminated by the courts and their zoning ordinances invalidated for failure to work towards a settlement. Wayne was recently warned by the court they are facing the same if they don’t come to a settlement soon. Both towns must allow the building, without any oversight of the location or design, 600-800 apartments on approximately 20-25 acres of land. Saddle River’s and Montvale’s settlements also illustrate the numbers of units that could have resulted in Upper Saddle River where we had 100 acres of vacant land available for development as we started our negotiations with Fair Share Housing. A tremendous thank you to our professionals and the council who worked diligently to arrive at a fair settlement that complied with NJ’s legal requirement for each municipality to offer low-and-moderate income housing opportunities while protecting our municipality’s infrastructure and resources.
The next step in settling the Borough’s Round 3, protecting the Borough from “builders’ remedy” lawsuits through 2025, is a Planning Board public hearing on the approved housing plan. The date will be announced once set by the Planning Board Chairman, James Virgona. The settlement can be found at https://www.usrtoday.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/USR-Final-Settlement-Agreement.pdf.
USR Girl Scouts: Congratulations to the recipients of this year’s Gold and Silver Awards! Due to COVID-19, a formal recognition ceremony could not be scheduled but these outstanding young women must be recognized for their achievements. Thanks to Joan Clifford and the Service Unit Team who installed lawn signs along Lake Street honoring each awardee. On Monday, June 29th, a drive-by recognition took place at Lions Park with congratulations given by their leaders and Mayor Joanne Minichetti. Each awardee then took her sign to display at her home. Congratulations to their leaders and parents as well for being there with them every step of the way.
Earning the Silver Award is a significant achievement. Hopefully the 20 young women, who have already accomplished so much at such a young age, will continue to make positive impacts.
Earning the Gold Award is a process intended to promote community service, personal growth, positive values, and leadership skills. In order to earn their Gold Award, the highest award in Girl Scouting, each of the scouts first completed at least one of the three Senior journeys. After learning about goal setting, leadership, teamwork and the importance of helping others, each scout then began planning and executing her own Gold Award project. As part of their project, each of the awardees had to formulate a procedure for measuring the impact of their project, and develop a plan to sustain the project beyond their own involvement. They connected with experts and community members and inspired other Girl Scouts as they devoted over 80 hours to their project. The pursuit of a Gold Award is based upon a girl’s desire to have a positive and lasting impact on her community. The process by which scouts earn the award is designed to give girls the opportunity to take something of interest to them and develop that interest into passion and that passion into change.
Congratulations to all of our Gold Award recipients:
Josette Audi – built flowering planters for the disabled at a low-income senior housing facility.
Caroline Clifford – put health protections in place for pets and police dogs, capturing the attention of the FBI, US Dept of Defense, Meera Ghandi and Tails of Hope Foundation.
Kelly Fuchs – constructed and designed a tranquility room for disabled veterans with PTSD.
Katherine McFarren – built large birdfeeders and developed a program for adults with dementia to engage with wildlife – something proven to reduce stress and increase social interaction in the elderly
Aislinn Perez – created a lending library for underprivileged and minority children, a vital resource especially with the recent closure of schools
Juliette Voskian – designed and implemented a program to teach seniors how to use technology to stay connected with family and friends – critical and well timed for the recent stay at home and social distancing orders
USR Police Department Message:
The beginning of the Atlantic hurricane season on June 1 serves as a reminder that residents should be aware of hurricane hazards and how to prepare for them. Hazards such as high winds, storm surges, high tides and rip currents, heavy rains, inland flooding, and tornadoes pose a threat to life and property.
Our local and State Office of Emergency Management encourages everyone to review the “Hurricane Survival Guide for New Jersey” and take necessary actions to prepare their families and homes. This guide can be found at the link provided below.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency also has updated guidelines to prepare for hurricane season during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please visit the Federal Emergency Management website for further information.
Per Executive Order # 144 from Governor Murphy, all elections that take place will be conducted primarily via vote-by-mail ballots, which will automatically be sent to all ”Active” registered Democratic and Republican voters without the need for an application to receive a vote-by-mail-ballot. As New Jersey is a closed Primary Election state, in order to receive a ballot, an Unaffiliated voter must choose to be affiliated with the Democratic or Republican party to receive that Party’s Vote by Mail Ballot. You may return to an Unaffiliated status following the Primary Election by completing and returning a Party Declaration Form to your County Commissioner of Registration.
The Upper Saddle River Borough Hall will be the only polling location open for disabled voters only. All other voters who go to the voting location on July 7th must vote with a provisional ballot. Any disabled voter planning to vote at the Borough Hall must wear a face mask at all times. All residents are strongly encouraged to vote via postage paid mail-in-ballot.
Ballot Drop Boxes are also available in the following locations:
Demarest – 118 Serpentine Road, Demarest, NJ (Borough Hall)
Fort Lee – 1355 Inwood Terrace/Anderson Avenue Circular Driveway (Fort Lee Community Center)
Hackensack – One Bergen County Plaza, Hackensack, NJ (County Administration Building)
Ramsey – 30 Wyckoff Avenue (Library – in rear of building)
Ridgewood – 131 North Maple Avenue, Ridgewood, NJ (Village Hall)
Rutherford – 176 Park Avenue, Rutherford (Borough Hall)
Ballot Drop Boxes are available 24-hours. Ballots must be in the Drop Box by 8:00 p.m. on election night. Ballots left after 8 p.m. on election night will be considered late and not counted.
ESTIMATED TAX BILLS
During the first week in July residents will receive Estimated Tax Bills in the mail. The Borough needed to take this action because the State extended its fiscal year in response to the COVID 19 pandemic. As a result, our annual State Aid payment will be late, forcing us to send out tax bills for the 3rd Quarter only to our residents.
With the delay in the State budget, we had to estimate what the 3rd Quarter tax payments will be. Once the tax rate is certified, any adjustment needed will occur in the 4th Quarter billing.
The deadline for payment of the 3rd Quarter Tax Bills is Aug. 1. This deadline is set by the State. The Grace Period extends to Aug. 10. Payments received up to Aug. 10 will incur no interest. Payments received after Aug. 10 will incur interest back to the due date of Aug. 1.
It’s important to remember, this bill is for the 3rd Quarter only. In Sept. we will be sending Final Tax Bills which will include the 4th Quarter of this year and the 1st and 2nd Quarters of next year.
Residents are reminded that although Borough Hall is still closed to the public, tax payments can be made in a number of ways. Tax payments can be mailed to Borough Hall or dropped off and placed in our mail slot. Taxes can also be paid on-line by credit card or e-check by visiting the Borough website at www.usrtoday.org .
If any resident has any questions regarding taxes, please call our Tax Office at (201) 934-3965.
Community Blood Drive – July 14, 2020:
Help serve our community by donating blood for hospital patients in need. The Presentation Knights of Columbus of Church of the Presentation and the Upper Saddle River Volunteer Ambulance Corps are hosting a blood drive on 7/14/2020 from 2pm to 7pm at the Upper Saddle River Volunteer Fire Dept Firehouse at 375 W. Saddle River Rd. Your donation can help save more than one life! To make an appointment: call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit our event web site at: https://www.redcrossblood.org/give.html/drive-results?zipSponsor=Presentation%20KOFC
Upper Saddle River Library:
The USR Library now offers residents contactless pickup of materials owned by the library. Materials will be bagged and waiting for you at the front entrance. For information on how to request and pickup hours, visit our website at: www.uppersaddleriverlibrary.org.
The Summer Reading program “Imagine your Story” has begun for children, teens and adults! Register here: usrlibrary.beanstack.org. Find activities for children and teens on our website.
Upper Saddle River Shredding Event: Saturday, October 31, 2020 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Dispose of your old documents and confidential files safely, by Confidential Shredding, Inc. Held behind USR Borough Hall at the DPW Building. USR Residents only please Limit of four bags/boxes per car.
Garbage and recycling are still being picked up per the normal schedule. If your regular pickup is missed, call Borough Hall at 201-327-2196. You can leave a voice message with your address, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Service may take longer than usual but it is ongoing as it’s a public health matter.
The Recycling Depot will be closed Saturday, July 4, 2020. It will be open on Saturdays beginning on July 11, 2020 from 8:00 a.m. to noon.
USR GARBAGE AND RECYCLING COLLECTIONS – July 2020
Garbage: Every Monday & Thursday
May West Side: Tuesday July 7th & July 21st
May East Side: Tuesday July 14th & July 28th
NOTE: Must call by 10am the NEXT DAY to report missed Trash/Recycles.
Curbside White Goods: Thursday, July 2, 2020. Call 201-327-2196 x221 to schedule appointment for the appliance at LEAST three days prior.
Next Curbside Bulky Trash: Friday, September 18, 2020.
Mayor and Council Meeting – Thursday, July 2, 2020:
The next Mayor and Council Meeting will be held on July 2, 2020 at 8:00 p.m. The meeting will be held via teleconference (Zoom) and the necessary credentials to join the meeting are as follows:
Computer: Link: https://zoom.us/j/842319706
Meeting ID: 842-319-706
Phone: 1-669-900-6833 or 1-877-853-5247
Then dial meeting ID (842-319-706) followed by #, then #, #9 to raise hand.