Saturday, February 15, 2014

Winter's walking and driving challenges bore editors

It's snowing again on Euclid Avenue in Hackensack.


An elderly or overweight pedestrian trying to climb over a slippery snow bank blocking a crosswalk isn't very dramatic.

And no one at The Record seems to have noticed how many drivers are challenging each other for the right of way on streets narrowed by uncleared snow.

Walking and driving have been a challenge since Thursday's nor'easter dumped 12 inches to 16 inches of snow and rain on the region.

Newsroom napping

But in the Woodland Park newsroom, drowsy editors order photographers to wow them with images of collapsed buildings and a smash-and-grab jewelry heist in Paramus, splashing them all over Page 1 and the Local front today.

In Teaneck and Englewood today, Orthodox Jews were forced to walk in the street to and from services or carry their small children over snow blocking crosswalks.

On Dean Street through downtown Englewood, congested with traffic in the best of times, snow narrowed the normal two lanes, prompting drivers to fight for the right of way.

Non-profit burden

Another front-page story today quotes Ridgewood Mayor Paul Aronsohn expressing concern The Valley Hospital, a non-profit, might try to have off-site properties it is buying declared tax exempt (A-1 and A-7).

Hackensack residents aren't holding their breath for their mayor, John Labrosse, to express concern over the hundreds of millions of dollars in tax-exempt property owned by the non-profit Hackensack University Medical Center, which also happens to be his employer.

The significant shift in the tax burden to residents and businesses stung again on Feb. 10, when 1st-quarter property taxes were due in Hackensack.

But residents who wrote big property tax checks don't get much in return when it comes to snow removal, and many find city plows undoing all the work of clearing driveways.

Hackensack news

Today's Page 1 photo of a roof collapse in Hackensack shows three city firefighters standing 40 feet or 50 feet away from the building and looking at it, yet the caption says they are "checking a vacant Passaic Street building."

On the Local front today, the big Hackensack news isn't the poor job of snow removal or property owners who never cleared their sidewalks.

Instead, we get another story about honest James Brady, the formerly homeless man who is still waiting for the welfare bureaucracy to restore his monthly cash benefit (L-1).

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