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North Bergen commissioners to keep meetings online

The board is following recommendation from Township Administrator Janet Castro

The North Bergen Board of Commissioners will keep the Zoom format reminiscent of "The Brady Bunch."

The North Bergen Board of Commissioners will continue to meet remotely, according to Mayor Nicholas Sacco.

The board has been meeting remotely since the onset of the pandemic. From April to October of 2020, the board met via phone conference until it switched to the current Zoom format.

Township Administrator Janet Castro recommended maintaining the virtual format at the August meeting. Commissioner Frank Garguilo questioned if the meetings would return to the municipal chambers at Town Hall come September.

Cases surge

Sacco deferred judgement to Castro, who noted the recent surge of COVID-19 cases due to the Delta variant.

“We’ve had a 301 case increase in the last 30 days,” Castro said on Aug. 18. “So my recommendation is to certainly continue remote, at least throughout the month of September to continue to assess the situation.”

Sacco agreed, “I think we should follow the recommendation from the health department. It’s based on the fact that there is an increase. I know schools are going back in session, but do we really want the public coming into Town Hall with all those numbers we could get if we start holding meetings in close quarters for an hour.”

Weddings still on

Sacco noted that weddings performed by him are still taking place in the municipal chambers.

“I’m still doing weddings, although I haven’t really done many,” Sacco said. “This month I think I’ve only done one. I got a number of them last month, three or four. I’m going to start again in September.”

According to Sacco, the weddings are quick and done individually, with wedding parties kept separate.

“They come in, and they take five to ten minutes, and they’re out,” Sacco said.

Sacco asked the board if it were okay staying remote for at least the next month. The commissioners agreed.

For updates on this and other stories, check www.hudsonreporter.com and follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Daniel Israel can be reached at disrael@hudsonreporter.com.

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