Sires sworn in to 115th Congress
Rep. Albio Sires was sworn into the 115th Congress by Speaker of the House Paul Ryan on Jan. 1. Sires and the entire membership of the House of Representatives stood and took the oath of office. Congressman Sires was elected to the House of Representatives in a special election in 2006. This will be his sixth full term in Congress.
“I am honored to continue my work representing the people of the 8th District of New Jersey in the House of Representatives in the 115th Congress,” said Sires. “I remain committed to the priorities of the residents of the 8th District, including investments in our transportation and infrastructure to support jobs and increase safety, as well as the protection of Medicare and Social Security to ensure that residents are provided with the benefits that they were guaranteed and rely on.”
Congressman Sires remains a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over’ campaign makes arrests and issues summonses
From Dec. 9 to Jan. 1 the Hudson County Sheriff’s Office arrested 13 drivers and issued numerous summonses as part of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administrations –Year End Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign. The campaign is funded by grant money from the New Jersey Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The campaign is designed to crackdown on drunk driving across the nation.
“I am pleased to announce that we did not arrest anyone for driving while intoxicated during a sobriety checkpoint that we conducted on Kennedy Boulevard Friday, Dec. 30,” said Sheriff Frank Schillari. “It is not all about arrests, the focus of this campaign is safety and the message was clear, the past efforts of my officers worked. Drinkers took the safest option and they did not drive drunk, they did not want to be arrested.” The checkpoint was not totally uneventful; Sheriff’s Officers issued 19 summonses of other offenses as a result of the checkpoint.
“Driving While Under the Influence is dangerous, I am glad that the hard work of my officers is yielding a positive effect and we will remain committed to helping make Hudson County a safe place to live and drive,” Schillari said.
The sweep resulted in the arrest of seven people for driving drunk and six for possession of drugs, among the total of 53 arrests made in the sweep. The offenses included open container of alcohol in a vehicle, possession of drugs, seat belt violations, speeding, cell phone use, unlicensed driving, driving with suspended license, careless driving, unregistered vehicle, uninsured vehicle, burned out lights, and running red lights or stop signs.
JCMC cited by OSHA for alleged safety violations.
On Dec. 21, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued citations to the Jersey City Medical Center for one willful and four serious safety violations. OSHA began its inspection on June 28, 2016, after the employer notified the agency that a worker needed to be hospitalized after falling from a ladder as he changed an overhead ballast in a light fixture. The worker later died from his injuries on July 17.
The agency cited the willful violation because the facility required employees to change ballasts without the proper lockout/tagout training on practices and procedures necessary to disable machinery or equipment to prevent hazardous energy release, as well as other safety hazards and related unsafe practices.
The serious violations involved the medical center’s failure to ensure de-energized circuits were locked out, maintain an electrical lockout/tagout program, ensure that only qualified persons worked on live circuits, provide personal protective equipment, and ensure workers did not work on live parts.
“This worker’s tragic death was preventable,” said Kris Hoffman, director of OSHA’s Parsippany Area Office. “Jersey City Medical Center did not have basic lockout/tagout safeguards in place to prevent exposure to electrical hazards, and failed to train its maintenance workers on these safeguards. As a result, the worker sustained an electrical shock while changing the ballast, fell approximately six feet off a ladder and died from his injuries.”
“The safety of Jersey City Medical Center’s patients, visitors and employees is always our first concern,” said Mark Rabson, spokesperson for JCMC. “We adhere to OSHA standards and recommendations. We cannot comment on an active investigation.”
New JSQ Community Association to meet Jan. 14
The New JSQ Community Association will hold a meeting on Saturday, Jan. 14, at 10 a.m. at Starting Points, 2737 Kennedy Blvd., between Bond and Stuyvesant streets. The association represents the interests of residents and owners of residential property within the boundaries of the Journal Square area defined by the group in its by-laws.
The discussion will focus on how residents and the city can work together to implement the association’s clean, green and safe initiatives. The agenda will also include the election of nine trustees.
The association plans to hold general membership meetings the second Saturday of each month at 10 a.m.
The New JSQ’s boundaries are Summit Avenue on the east, Corbin Avenue on the west, Newark Avenue on the north, and Vroom Street and DeKalb Avenue on the south. All residents of the city, however, are welcome to attend its meetings.
St. John’s Lutheran Church to hold indoor flea market
St. John’s Lutheran Church, located at 155 North St. in Jersey City, will hold its indoor flea market on Saturday, Jan. 21 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information call (201) 214-5300 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Give blood in WNY or Hoboken
As people travel in winter and are not as available to donate, the American Red Cross urges eligible donors to make an appointment to give blood or platelets to help meet the constant need for blood this winter.
In West New York, blood donations will be accepted on Jan. 9 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. at St. Mary of the Holy Redeemer Roman Catholic Church, 6515 Polk St.
In Hoboken, donations can be made on Jan. 14 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. at Saint Francis Parish Center, 308 Jefferson St.
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in.
Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Blood donors can now save time at their next donation by using RapidPass to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, prior to arriving at the blood drive. To get started and learn more, visit redcrossblood.org/RapidPass and follow the instructions on the site.
Hudson County CASA is seeking volunteers
Learn how to become a CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) volunteer and help foster children find safe and permanent homes. You may attend an information session at the Hudson County Courthouse, 595 Newark Ave. Room 901, on Tuesday, Jan. 10 at 6:30 p.m. Hudson County Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) is a non-profit organization committed to advocating for the best interests of abused and neglected children. CASA works through trained community volunteers to ensure that needed services and assistance are made available to children while helping to move them toward safe and permanent homes. Hudson County CASA volunteers are everyday people who make a direct impact in foster children’s lives. They are trusted, dedicated adults who seek to improve children’s well-being. CASA volunteers get to know their assigned child and his or her circumstances and provide valuable information to the court. Judges rely on the volunteers’ recommendations to make the best decisions about the children’s futures.
For further information, visit www.hudsoncountycasa.org.