Friday, March 1, 2013

Editors bury tough words about home rule

The owners of this house on Hackensack's Overlook Avenue refused to sell to high-rise developers, but were driven away by the relentless noise of multimillion-dollar business jets roaring overhead on the way to a gentle landing at nearby Teterboro Airport.

Buried in today's incredibly boring paper are some tough words about home rule in North Jersey -- a subject The Record has tried hard to avoid as property taxes continue to soar.

Way back on A-16, an editorial says "the state's tradition of home rule" has "become a luxury taxpayers can no longer afford."

"Oftentimes, the only people who truly embrace home rule are the officials doing the ruling," the editorial says.

Has it been two decades since The Record ran a municipal finance series on the expensive duplication of services in Bergen County's 70 communities?

In Hackensack, property taxes have gone up and city services have declined, including street paving and the enforcement of speeding and stop-sign laws.

Pray for the Syrians

The only element of any real interest on Editor Marty Gottlieb's front page today is the plight of Syrians fleeing government airstrikes.

Plugs a limo service

On the Local front, Road Warrior John Cichowski focuses his lame column on a single limo driver's complaint about a message board at the George Washington Bridge, and shamelessly plugs the limo service by name.

Then, the supremely lazy Cichowski fields questions from confused, disoriented and delinquent E-ZPass holders.

Hackensack news is missing for yet another day as head Assignment Editor Deirdre Sykes and her deputy, Dan Sforza, catch up on their sleep.

Where are his glasses?

In his column on Wednesday, the tired Cichowski had trouble reading a highway safety report and misstated the number of deaths in other states. No correction has appeared.

A concerned reader pointed out the error in an e-mail to managers sent on Thursday:

"Road Warrior mistakes continue to increase, as in his Feb. 27 column on the Governors Highway Safety Association report that showed teen drivers deaths going down in New Jersey in first half of 2012 while going up nationwide in comparison to 2011.

"As shown previously, the Road Warrior continues to make mistakes based on his being unable to correctly report actual data and information from reports.

"The Road Warrior mistakenly indicated that other states, such as Indiana and Tennessee, showed increases of more than 14 deaths in the first six months of 2012, despite their GDL laws.

"The report clearly indicated that NO state had increases over 13.  Increases were 13 for Indiana and 10 for Tennessee."

Read the full e-mail on the Facebook Page for Road Warrior Bloopers:

I'm on deadline, where are my glasses?

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