In a meeting on January 25, the Bayonne Board of Education laid off 16 district employees and demoted six others amid a $2 million budget deficit facing the district. It also appointed Michael A. Wanko, PhD, as Interim Superintendent, effective July 1, to take over when Dr. Patricia McGeehan’s contract expires. “Due to reasons of economy,” read Board Secretary Gary Maita before citing each name and position that would be either cut or transferred. Before he cast his vote to fire 14 secretaries and a teacher’s aide, Board President Joseph Broderick called the evening, “one of the toughest nights I’ve ever had being on this board.” Trustees were visibly upset over their tough decisions. After all, they did not invite the budget shortfall. “All these people that we’re talking about in my estimate are doing a terrific job, which makes it that much more difficult to cut these positions,” said Broderick, adding that all decisions made during the meeting are of “a strictly financial matter.” Click here for more.
On a cloudy, cold morning on January 24, while being counseled by a Bayonne police officer, a young and distressed Jersey City man jumped off Brady’s Dock at the southern end of Bayonne into the Kill Van Kull in an attempted suicide. Without a thought, the two officers jumped in after him. “He was telling me his life was over, nobody does anything for him, nobody helps him out,” said Officer Timothy Sullivan, who was talking to a 28-year-old man on a bench near the dock at around 8:30 a.m. Officer Sullivan and Officer Jeffrey Kaiser responded to two earlier calls for a domestic issue involving the man, who was having problems with his cousins and sisters in an apartment complex near the dock, where his aunt lives. When responding to the third call, the officers found the distressed man walking along the shoreline. Click here for more.
Dozens of women and a handful of men from local towns took 14 buses from Hudson County to Washington, D.C. on Saturday, Jan. 21 to march for women’s rights and for civil rights for disadvantaged groups. Similar protests were held in New York, Toronto, and London. Hoisting signs such as “Nasty woman in training,” “These boobs were made for marching,” “My body my choice,” “Women’s rights are human rights,” “Dump Trump,” “Don’t tread on me,” “Men of quality do not fear equality,” and “Keep your tiny hands off my rights,” the women spent six hours in the nation’s capital before heading home. The protest was said to be the largest in U.S. history. “I hope today is the beginning of a movement to keep the next four years moving forward and not allow this administration to pull us back,” said Hoboken resident Liz Cohen on one of the buses, as the group rolled down to D.C. Participants had to be at the buses in Hoboken by 4:30 a.m. Click here for more.