Thursday, February 13, 2014

New chapter in Hackensack's snow-removal follies

On Wednesday afternoon, cars parked on mounds of snow along Euclid Avenue in Hackensack show residents ignored a plea from city officials to move their vehicles off the street to allow plows to clean "from curb to curb."


Snow is falling heavily in Hackensack this morning -- another in a seemingly endless series of winter storms -- and half-assed snow removal has made driving and even walking dangerous all over North Jersey.

But editors of The Record operate in a bubble, and they've filled today's front page with a silly sports column and breathless stories about the wreckage Governor Christie has made of running New Jersey -- a sad state of affairs that dates to 2010.

Parking woes

In Hackensack, many residents ignored the city's plea on Wednesday to move their cars off streets to allow plows to clean up all the snow they failed to remove in the last two weeks.

The city's past policy of approving apartment buildings without enough off-street parking has come back to bite officials.

The city said it would tow cars off of "snow streets," and on Wednesday night, my wife saw police towing a car parked on Prospect Avenue.

Walking woes

Meanwhile, another policy, the absence of school busing, forces students walking to and from classes to cope with many uncleared sidewalks.

Property owners shirk their responsibility, knowing the city doesn't enforce its own snow-removal ordinance.

One student, who walked from Hackensack High School to Euclid and Prospect avenues on Wednesday afternoon, described the experience as a "nightmare," explaining he had to climb over waist-high snow blocking crosswalks.

Hackensack 'emergency'

Today and Wednesday, Hackensack residents received e-mails on emergency snow removal and free off-street parking from Albert H. Dib of, the city Web site.

A news story based on the press release appears in The Record's Local section today (L-2), but the paper hasn't bothered to report on the effectiveness of snow removal in the 90 or so towns in its circulation area.

As snow turned to rain this afternoon, residents of Euclid Avenue in Hackensack clear sidewalks and driveways, above and below.

Chasing old news

On L-1 today, the lazy local-news editors continue to catch up to the clearing of dangerous mounds of snow blocking bus stops along Route 3 in Clifton, a problem reported on TV news last Friday.

Who is Dib?

Dib is a part-time city employee and executive director of the Hackensack Main Street Business Alliance, a public-private partnership.

The group, created in 2004, has had little success in reviving the fortunes of Main Street, especially after The Record and North Jersey Media Group pulled out of Hackensack in 2009.

Dib also is administrator of, a community message board, where he has censored postings from Eye on The Record, as well as contributions from other residents.

Fort Lee news

Fort Lee is back in the news today with new developments in the state Legislature's Bridgegate investigation into local access lane closures on the George Washington Bridge (A-3).

But another Fort Lee report is really shocking, a seven-year contract for Police Chief Keith Bendul, who will be making $224,281 in 2019 -- about $50,000 more than the governor of New Jersey (L-3).

Deputy Police Chief Timothy Ford's pay "would jump" from from $187,313 to $197,460, the story says.

Fuzzy reporting

The story is unclear, reporting Bendul "has been awarded a seven-year contract" and "the council recently approved employment contracts for Bendul and the deputy police chief," but also that a public hearing on their salaries will be held.

So, if the contracts have been awarded and approved, what is the point of the public hearing on their salaries at this point?

The story doesn't say.

1 comment:

  1. HackensackNow is not a "private board," and as a part-time city employee, Dib shouldn't be censoring anybody. I think he should be fired.


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