hoboken411

Waste Management in Hoboken – Hopeless?

Waste Management: Budget Cuts are “Costing” Hoboken

What do you think of this “Waste Management” editorial by a Hoboken resident? Is it legitimate? Or just blown smoke?

Regardless of your opinion… it is apparent that certain city “features” suffer along with the economy. Wonder what other “essential” city services will fall by the wayside… and more importantly – WHY?

Hoboken NJ Garbage so what waste management do we have

Can the city of Hoboken, NJ hand simple garbage pickup?

Health and Environmental Service Committee of the City of Hoboken:

This morning I noticed several people on the way to work dumping full size garbage bags into the public litter cans along Washington Street. One guy, was even carrying his garbage with one hand while bicycling on the sidewalk! As he passed the public can with his huge bag of garbage, he nonchalantly dropped his load into the corner can.

I have lived in this town many years and never, until now, have I borne witness to this bold behavior. Perplexed, I viewed the Hoboken garbage and recycling pick-up schedule. Careful examination showed that the two day Monday-Tuesday no garbage pick-up stretch was due to cutting out a day of pickup.

For folks who miss the Sunday pick-up, because they are busy on the weekend or have other religious obligations, there is up to five full days of wet garbage build-up before the next pickup. By Monday, the accumulated weekend trash, plus the prospect of living with that garbage – plus three additional days of garbage – until the next garbage pickup raises the risk of resident dumping.

The City of Hoboken’s web site describes the responsibilities of Environmental Services as “orchestrating garbage and recycling collection”. It certainly appears that the conductor of this orchestra has not been provided with the resources to do the job. For this reason, I copy the Finance Committee of the City of Hoboken. I am aware Councilwoman Castellano objected to this cut, providing many sound arguments for why a $100,000 savings on sanitation was not adviseable. Councilman Russo also had several recommendations on cost cutting measures that could be explored given both the budget concerns, complaints regarding the outsourced contract and lack of response to the RFP.

Please consider the Duty of Care owed to the residents of the City of Hoboken for Essential Services. This is not the first time that Hoboken has failed in regard to Environmental Services causing buildup of filth on our streets and attracting a population of rats, opossums and crows. It is a trying position for a constituent to be placed in when Essential Public Health and Safety Services are not provided for.

Please let me know how the Council in conjunction with the City intends to rectify. As I await your reply, I remain,

Healthfully,

Melissa


Buggy Balance

Congrats! Hoboken Buggy Balance Kickstarter Fully Funded!

Congratulations to Anna and her Buggy Balance Kickstarter project, which became fully funded yesterday! You still have time to buy in and support this project until tomorrow night.

We even supported it and don’t have a stroller!

Parents – Do you like the Buggy Balance idea?

8/22/2014:

Hoboken resident Anna was sick of having her baby stroller tip over when her toddler decided to stretch their limbs after she went shopping. So she devised a product called Buggy Balance, which essentially keeps the stroller “weighted down” to prevent those annoying mishaps where your double-latte from Starbucks along with your Facebook-loaded iPhone come crashing to the ground.

While adding weights to the front of your stroller is no more than a 10 minute study of the situation and a trip to Home Depot – Anna has created a Kickstarter Project called Buggy Balance.

She’s looking to raise $5,000 to start this project / company where she can provide frustrated parents with the necessary “weights” to help prevent the “stroller overload” that affects countless parents every day in Hoboken and beyond.

Imagine getting you Soy-double-skinny-whatever and not having to worry about standing on line again? That thought alone is worth it, isn’t it?

Donate to her project here – and see video below.

Does common sense require a warning?

Common Sense Warning Signs along Hoboken waterfront

Not sure you’ve noticed this – but along the Hoboken waterfront are “Warning” signs about the “dangerous currents” from the Hudson River. And along with the big bold WARNING letters are cute symbols saying “No Diving,” “No Swimming,” and “No Sitting.”

Warning dangerous currents sign along Hoboken NJ waterfront is it necessary

Don’t be an idiot is more like it

Anyone with common sense does not need to be reminded of this (probably at the recommendation from the cavalry of attorneys at city hall…)

These were obviously put in place due to the suicide of Andrew Jarzyk this past spring (and how the city got shamed for not having operational video cameras).

However, in the end – these signs will never stop a suicidal person from jumping in and offing themselves. So not sure why they need to ruin the great skyline view with more wasteful visual clutter. Up next? Probably graffiti vandalism on the signs.

Dangerous Currents Warning Hoboken NJ

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More Reverse Parking in Hoboken

Pedestrian struck as car reverses onto sidewalk in Hoboken

We told you already that this reverse-angle parking in Hoboken was a bad idea for several reasons, including the fact that MOST people cannot judge (i.e., “have a good feel for”) the dimensions of the REAR of their car. 99% of the time you’re focused on the FRONT. It’s human nature actually, but by now making it mandatory to expect people to immediately have the skill-set required for backing into parking spots like this is unrealistic. And look what happened today – a pedestrian was “roughed up” by a car that hopped the curb.

Hoboken resident Faith Lauter had this to say: “My friend just fell on Willow and 11th because a car went up on the curb while reverse parking. Her hands and knees are busted as a result!”

Injury caused by reverse angle parking in Hoboken NJ

See what other problems this is causing – including the video by My 9 News below…

My 9 News also covers reverse angle parking in Hoboken

8/22/2014 Update:

“My9′s Vice President and Station Manager looks at the latest parking problem to plague the city of Hoboken, New Jersey: Reverse-angle parking. The city put these spots on a busy stretch of Willow Ave forcing drivers to back up between two cars while traffic waits.”

Don’t say we didn’t tell you so!

See our original story from last week below…

Willow Ave. Reverse Parking in Hoboken

8/11/2014:

For those of us who are still skilled at driving a motor vehicle – how we park is not a concern. Parallel parking (on the left or right), straight in parking, or reverse angle parking does not matter. We know how to operate our cars, and have the physical capabilities (eyes, ears, arms, etc.) to ensure that we never have any issues whatsoever.

However, in today’s “make it so easy for everyone” world – it appears that we no longer hold a level of competence up for the rest of the drivers.

Reverse Parking Willow Avenue Hoboken NJ 1

Is reverse angle parking safer? Present any new issues?

As Hudson County completed the Willow Ave resurfacing between 11th and 13th Streets recently, they implemented a change in how cars park. This was tried up on Madison St. recently too. Apparently “traffic studies” show that parking this way, instead of head-in, is a little bit safer. They might be right, but we just presume it shifts any potential safety hazard to initially parking rather than leaving the spot – but whatever they say is fine with us.

But some residents have already pointed out a few NEW issues to contend with. What do you think?

Is reverse angle parking toxic?

On just one block – we witnessed three cars running for extended periods. People have expressed concerns about carbon monoxide seeping into the apartments the car exhaust pipes face. City puppets, instead of admitting it’s a valid worry – cited already on the books statutes that prohibit “idling.” Just wait until the winter – when people warm their cars for a long time!

Thank God Willow Ave. is a straight shot to the hospital.

Reverse Parking Willow Avenue Hoboken NJ carbon monoxide

Reverse angle parking a threat to pedestrians?

Another resident told us they nearly got struck by a car reversing in. Because there are no “buffer bumpers” other than the curb itself – the new concern is that people aren’t used to judging the distance of the rear of their car. Another well thought-out project in New Jersey.

Take a look at this van, almost occupying half of the sidewalk. But don’t worry – they have a storage room of high-priced lawyers drooling over the future billable hours.

Reverse Parking Willow Avenue Hoboken NJ pedestrian safety

Mix and Match – let’s do it both ways!

I can see this being fun. The newbies out there can’t comprehend how to park in reverse, and still do it the old way. Wonder how many new accidents this arrangement will create?

Reverse Parking Willow Avenue Hoboken NJ wrong way

Maybe this is what politicians mean when they say “change?”

Free range kids next to impossible?

What ever happened to “free range kids?”

Stumbled on the article below recently. It’s getting out of control to “criminalize” things like kids playing outside unsupervised. Most of us grew up with no external entity telling us how to raise and care for our children.

Frankly, the outcome of any unfortunate incident (injury, death) due to negligence is on the backs of the parents already. I can imagine the sorrow a parent would have if, due to their recklessness their offspring suffered in any way. And that is where it should end – the grieving parents. That “punishment” on its own should be enough – not state-mandated, revenue generating “control” over how we live our lives.

Does smashing a car window to “save” a toy baby doll ring any bells?

So it appears that lovely concept of “free range kids” is circling the drain faster by the week, as the fashionable trend these days is for a “community” to own and raise the children – and not individual parents. When will the BS stop?

Poll: Most Want to Criminalize Pre-Teens Playing Unsupervised


Girl on swing

A whopping 68 percent of Americans think there should be a law that prohibits kids 9 and under from playing at the park unsupervised, despite the fact that most of them no doubt grew up doing just that.

What’s more: 43 percent feel the same way about 12-year-olds. They would like to criminalize all pre-teenagers playing outside on their own (and, I guess, arrest their no-good parents).

Those are the results of a Reason/Rupe poll confirming that we have not only lost all confidence in our kids and our communities—we have lost all touch with reality.

“I doubt there has ever been a human culture, anywhere, anytime, that underestimates children’s abilities more than we North Americans do today,” says Boston College psychology professor emeritus Peter Gray, author of Free to Learn, a book that advocates for more unsupervised play, not less.

In his book, Gray writes about a group of 13 kids who played several hours a day for four months without supervision, though they were observed by an anthropologist. “They organized activities, settled disputes, avoided danger, dealt with injuries, distributed goods… without adult intervention,” he writes.

The kids ranged in age from 3 to 5.

Of course, those kids were allowed to play in the South Pacific, not South Carolina, where Debra Harrell was thrown in jail for having the audacity to believe her 9-year-old would be fine by herself at a popular playground teeming with activity. In another era, it not only would have been normal for a child to say, “Goodbye, mom!” and go off to spend a summer’s day there, it would have been odd to consider that child “unsupervised.” After all, she was surrounded by other kids, parents, and park personnel. Apparently now only a private security detail is considered safe enough.

Harrell’s real crime was that she refused to indulge in inflated fears of abduction and insist her daughter never leave her side. While there are obviously many neighborhoods wrecked by crime where it makes more sense to keep kids close, the country at large is enjoying its lowest crime level in decades.

Too bad most people reject this reality. The Reason/Rupe Poll asked “Do kids today face more threats to their physical safety?” and a majority—62 percent—said yes. Perhaps that’s because the majority of respondents also said they don’t think the media or political leaders are overhyping the threats to our kids.

But they are. “One culprit is the 24 hour news cycle,” said Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder, when I asked him why so few kids are outside these days. Turn on cable TV, “and all you have to do is watch how they take a handful of terrible crimes against children and repeat that same handful over and over,” he said. “And then they repeat the trial over and over, and so we’re conditioned to live in a state of fear.”

Why shouldn’t kids experience life?

free range kidsRationally understanding that we are living in very safe times is not enough to break the fear, he added.

So what is?

Experience. Through his Children and Nature Network, Louv urges families to gather in groups and go on hikes or even to that park down the street that Americans seem so afraid of. Once kids are outside with a bunch of other kids, they start to play. It just happens. Meanwhile, their parents stop imagining predators behind every bush because they are face to face with reality instead of Criminal Minds. They start to relax. It just happens.

Over time, they can gradually regain the confidence to let their kids go whoop and holler and have as much fun as they themselves did, back in the day.

Richard Florida, the urbanist and author of The Rise of the Creative Class is one of the many parents today who recalls walking to school solo in first grade. He was in charge of walking his kindergarten brother the next year. The age that the Reason/Rupe respondents think kids should start walking to school without an adult is 12.

That’s the seventh grade.

Florida has intensely fond memories of riding his bike “everywhere” by the time he was 10. Me too. You too, I’m guessing. Why would we deny that joy to our own kids? Especially when we’re raising them in relatively safer times?

“Let your kids play in the park, for God’s sake,” Florida pleads. “We’ll all be better for it.”

Why should South Pacific toddlers have all the fun?

Even more waterfront filth

Garbage mountains in Hoboken – blame robotic trash bins?

Earlier today we mentioned that even though countless robotic trash bins that send tweets and text messages pepper the waterfront – there are still many signs of filth.

But have you seen what Pier A Park looks like after a typical Movies Under the Stars showing? People cannot fit their trash into these things, and refuse (food, etc.) piles up – attracting disease-ridden vermin to scavenge for scraps.

If this isn’t a sign of “progress,” I don’t know what is.
/sarc

Waterfront filth welcome to Hoboken postcard

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