Union resident addresses concerns during meeting

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UNION, NJ — During the public comments section of the Union Township Committee meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 21, Union resident Daryn Martin brought a number of issues by phone to the attention of Mayor Michele Delisfort and the committee, including local speeding, the need for another high school within Union and township cleanliness, but he started with the Union Plaza Shopping Center on Route 22.

“The Union shopping plaza, where ShopRite is on Route 22 — I’m trying to understand why they don’t have any garbage receptacles in an entire strip mall. So what people are doing is that they’re throwing the garbage inside of shopping carts, which is a quality-of-life issue and brings mice and rodents to that area,” Martin said by phone during the meeting. “I need someone to address that. I did speak with someone recently about it from the city, and I don’t know if it’s been addressed yet. When I went there recently, nothing has been done.”

Martin complained that a stop sign has been missing for more than a month where you enter the shopping plaza via the alley off Springfield Road by the MyUnique Thrift store. He called this a serious safety concern bound to result, eventually, in a head-on collision.

“I did speak to the traffic bureau recently about it,” he said. “I don’t know if that’s been rectified, but I wanted to put it on record, to make sure that those two things get taken care of.”
Martin then addressed building another high school in town, code violation and safety issues.

“I think there needs to be some plans at some point to either build another high school or a high school annex, to relieve the stress of the amount of students at the high school,” Martin said. “It’s at 2,200 (students) and, as long as we keep bringing new residents, which I don’t have a problem with, we’re going to get more students. So, there has to be a plan at some point to build a larger building or annex.

“There’s an auto body shop on the corner of Stuyvesant and Stanley Terrace inside that Shell station, across from Hollywood Cemetery. The owner of the auto body shop is alleging that he’s being targeted by code enforcement,” he continued. “I saw some evidence of it myself, and I think that needs to be rectified. That owner would like to set up a meeting with whomever’s going to handle it from the city. I’d like to be there, because I want to make sure that gets addressed.”

Lastly, Martin spoke about a speeding and safety issue that has caused countless accidents.

“There is a huge safety and speeding concern on Burnett Avenue, between Route 78 and Stanley Terrace. I was under the impression that that was a county road, but I was told that it’s not a county road. I know, every time a car runs into someone’s property there or totaled someone’s car there, Union police show up every single time,” Martin said. “Not Union County police, but Union police. So, if that is our area, a traffic study needs to be done there, before someone gets killed. It was near and dear to me last year, when my former supervisor — her house was run into. Thank God she had bushes and a railing there; otherwise, they would’ve been in her bedroom.

“That has to be some kind of concern from someone in this township to handle that, and the residents in the area deserve someone to go and meet with them,” he continued. “Someone is going to get killed where Route 78 borders Stanley Terrace. The police always show up, which is a great thing, but so many cars have been totaled and property has been damaged. There have been countless accidents there, and it’s continuing. Someone has to address that.”

After Martin had discussed all of his concerns, the mayor addressed them.

“Regarding the Union shopping plaza, we will contact the owner of the plaza and we will be sure to send our DPW department out there to take a look at the maintenance issues,” Delisfort said during the meeting. “You also mentioned the Springfield Road Unique store. We’ll be sure to follow up with the traffic bureau.

“As for the Stuyvesant Avenue auto body shop, the issue with the code enforcement officer: a member of the administration will contact you to discuss the matter further,” she said to Martin.

“Regarding the issue of speeding between 78 and Stanley Terrace, it is a county road,” the mayor said. “However, we will contact you and get the resident information, so that perhaps we can contact the county and mitigate this matter.”