Mayor Nicholas Sacco won the NJLA Library Champion Award for development, extensive social and educational programming, and passing legislation in favor of libraries as a state senator.
Mayor Nicholas Sacco won the NJLA Library Champion Award for development, extensive social and educational programming, and passing legislation in favor of libraries as a state senator.

Sacco wins NJLA’s Library Champion Award

North Bergen Mayor Nicholas Sacco has been awarded the 2019 New Jersey Library Association’s Library Champion Award. The recognition is given annually to an exceptional contribution to a New Jersey Library, group of libraries, or to a New Jersey library community.

Sacco was honored for devoting time and resources in support of North Bergen Public Library’s social programming, education, and events for residents of all ages. Those programs have been expanding to meet the burgeoning needs of the community.

As a senator, he also pushed for the New Jersey Library Construction Bond Act, which authorized state government to issue $125,000,000 in general bonds for capital projects at public libraries.

The award came in the wake of Sacco launching the downtown branch of the North Bergen Public Library in 2013, which will be relocated to a larger downtown community center that is still under construction.

Evan Rodriguez hosts free football camp

Evan “E-Rod” Rodriguez, a former North Bergen Bruin, will host a free football and cheerleading camp on May 18 between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Rodriguez, a tight end for the San Antonio Commanders, also had experience in the NFL, signing with the Chicago Bears, Miami Dolphins, Buffalo Bills, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The camp will be held at Vinny Ascolese Field, where Rodriguez starred as a Bruin from 2003 to 2006, and is sponsored by USA Football through the assistance of the NFL.

To register, visit, enter “New Jersey” in the search bar, and enroll by creating a personal profile on the USA Football website.

Limited registrations will be accepted on May 18 starting at 9 a.m., but for a guaranteed spot in E-Rod’s camp and a free t-shirt, you must register online.

Spring Fest on North Bergen waterfront

For an inaugural run, Hackensack Meridian Health Palisades Medical Center will host a Spring Fest on its waterfront campus on Saturday, May 18, from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission and parking are free. There is easy access to the hospital campus along the Hudson River walkway.

Festival attractions and activities include meeting New York professional sports alumni, inflatable rides for kids, a caricature artist, face painting, health screenings, wellness information, great food, and DJ music.

Palisades Medical Center is at 7600 River Road in North Bergen.

Preregistration is suggested but not required. All who preregister will be entered into a raffle for four tickets to see a New York Red Bulls soccer game. To preregister, call 201-854-5008 or visit

North Hudson Lawyer’s Club scholarships being accepted

The North Hudson Lawyer’s Club Foundation is accepting applications for the 2019 North Hudson Lawyer’s Club Foundation Scholarship. The purpose of the scholarship is to encourage and advance the next generation of leaders in North Hudson County by providing financial assistance to motivated high school seniors intent on pursuing a college degree.

Applicants must account for appropriate academic standards (submit high school transcript), demonstrate financial need (submit FAFSA and College Award Letter) and be bona fide residents of Guttenberg, North Bergen, Union City, Weehawken and West New York attending Hudson County Schools of Technology, Memorial High School, North Bergen High School, Union City High School, or Weehawken High School.

Applicants must plan to attend college for the upcoming academic year beginning in September 2019 (fall semester) and provide two current letters of recommendation.

To obtain a copy of the application, students can email the North Hudson Lawyer’s Club Foundation Scholarship Committee at or seek a copy from their high school counselor. All applicants must scan and email applications on or before June 1, 2019. For questions, please email the foundation or contact Eloisa V. Castillo, Esq. at 2006 Kennedy Blvd., Suite 201, Union City.

HCCC joins Achieve the Dream network of colleges

Hudson County Community College (HCCC) announced that it has joined Achieving the Dream (ATD), a network of more than 220 colleges in 43 states dedicated to improving student success. As an ATD network institution, HCCC will innovate to implement, align, and scale cutting-edge reforms, work with ATD coaches to build institutional capacity, and connect with peers to foster learning and share information.

“The strength of local and regional economies, our ability to rebuild the middle class, and the possibility that a new generation will achieve its goals depends on community colleges,” ATD’S president and CEO, Dr. Karen A. Stout, said. “Colleges that join the ATD network show an exceptional commitment to becoming the kind of institution that will lead the nation into the future.”

ATD offers a capacity-building framework and companion self assessment that allows colleges to pinpoint strengths and areas for improvement across seven institutional capacities. ATD’s approach integrates and aligns existing college success efforts and offers support in preparing for accreditation, fostering conversation about goals, and making holistic, institution-wide changes.

A team from HCCC will meet with leaders from 15 other colleges in Phoenix, Arizona, in June to plan the launch of its ATD work.

DEP launches connecting habitat across New Jersey

A new project to make New Jersey’s landscape and roadways friendlier to wildlife seeking food, shelter, mates, and other needs is underway to help sustain healthy populations of various species, the Department of Environmental Protection announced.

“The Connecting Habitat Across New Jersey project offers new tools to help secure and restore habitat connectivity across the state, giving wildlife the ability to meet all their needs now, and to adapt as best they can to a changing climate,” DEP Commissioner Catherine R. McCabe said.

CHANJ, pronounced “change,” is administered by the Endangered and Nonage Species program in the DEP’s Division of Fish and Wildlife. More than 40 partner groups have provided input on the project during the past several years.

The statewide CHANJ Mapping tool highlights New Jersey’s remaining intact habitats, called “Cores,” and the best opportunities to link them, called “Corridors.”  It also identifies road segments that cut through habitats and are likely to pose problems for animal movement.  The mapping is available via an online CHANJ Web Viewer where land managers, transportation planners, conservation groups, and the general public can visualize their place in New Jersey’s habitat connectivity puzzle.

A companion Guidance Document helps users make strategic choices about preserving land, restoring habitat, and mitigating the impacts of roads on wildlife.

To learn more about CHANJ and its related projects, visit Email questions to