Hudson County will see municipal elections and new transportation options in 2003. The new Secaucus Transfer Train Station - that large structure you might see rising beside the Turnpike when approaching Hudson County - will open for limited use. There will be council and commission elections in Hoboken, North Bergen and Guttenberg.
Buildings that were approved by planning boards in previous years are on the rise on the Weehawken, West New York, Jersey City and Hoboken waterfronts, with others near the cities' borders.
The development boom that swelled in the 1990s had spurred a different kind of political movement in Hoboken and possibly other towns - an effort to quell noise and development in areas that are already crowded. We are likely to see more involved planning board hearings this year, and more attention to the quality of life in well-populated towns.
The nature of towns further north may change, too. West New York is adding a new population of young professionals with luxury condos on the waterfront. Union City has been cracking down on bar rowdiness and will be talking throughout the next year about adding new school buildings to address overcrowding.
Residents are likely to also hear more of the U.S. Attorney's office in its effort to finally root out corruption in North Bergen and in the county as a whole. After several officials have pleaded guilty in North Bergen to charges of having accepted personal services from a town contractor, officials said they are not done with their probe.
Will these changes make for a better way of life in Hudson County, or will new problems and problematic officials replace the old? It remains to be seen.
Within this issue are articles on future steps in development, politics, sports and transportation for 2003. Also included is a list of what the top stories are likely to be in each town, as well as our annual humorous predictions for the year.
Anyone who has questions, comments or suggestions on the newspaper's coverage is always encouraged to call, e-mail or write us at the number and addresses listed in the staff box. Letters to the editor must include a phone number at which we can call the author to verify his/her authorship, and they should be less than 500 words for consideration.
About this edition
Just for this week, this special "year to come" edition of the Hudson Reporter newspaper replaces your regular weekly editions in Guttenberg, Hoboken, Jersey City, North Bergen, Secaucus, Union City, Weehawken, and West New York.
The regular editions of the paper will return next weekend with the Jan. 12 issue.
To read last week's "year in review" issue, click on www.hudsonreporter.com.