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Closures for Monday and Tuesday, Jan. 26 & 27 (ongoing list)

Here’s an ongoing list of local closures as of 1:22 p.m., Jan. 26. We’ll update this post as new information is available to us. • North Arlington Public Schools, closed Jan. 27. • North Arlington Borough Hall, closed Jan. 27 […]

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Nutley Library closing today at 1 p.m.

The Nutley Public Library will close early Monday, Jan. 26, 2015 at 1 p.m., due to inclement weather. Call the library at 973-667-0405 on Tuesday to see if it has reopened. You may also check the library website at nutleypubliclibrary.org […]

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State offices closing at 1 p.m. today, will be closed tomorrow

State offices will close today at 1 p.m., and will be closed tomorrow, after Gov. Christie declared a State of Emergency for the entire state.

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Delivery of The Observer will likely be delayed Tuesday; no trash pickup in NA Tuesday

Because of the pending storm, delivery of The Observer will likely be delayed tomorrow, Jan. 27. We will do our best to get the newspapers to all of our locations as soon as is possible, but they may not be […]

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Angelo Feorenzo, father of former Observer Publisher Lisa Feorenzo, dies at 75

Above: Tina Feorenzo, Angelo J. Feorenzo and former Observer Publisher Lisa Feorenzo. Angelo James Feorenzo, 75, of Toms River, died Thursday, Jan. 22, at Community Medical Center in Toms River. Born and raised in Hackensack, he moved to Toms River in […]

 
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Jeff Bahr: An Appreciation

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By Ron Leir
Observer correspondent

In the movie, “The Misfits,” Gay, the cowboy character played by Clark Gable (in what would turn out to be his last film) tries to persuade two buddies to join in a “mustanging” enterprise.

“Beats wages, don’t it?” Gay asserts.

The implication is that you get to keep your freedom by living life on your own terms.

Hearing that phrase echo in my mind, just a few days later, I thought of Jeff Bahr, my former Observer colleague and friend from Bloomfield who was killed April 10 while riding his beloved 2012 Triumph Explorer motorcycle in West Buffalo Township, Pa. Read more »

Former Observer correspondent Jeff Bahr dies in motorcycle crash

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Former Observer correspondent Jeff Bahr, 56, died April 10 as a result of a motorcycle crash in Pennsylvania. Our thoughts and sincere condolences are with Jeff’s entire family.

Our Ron Leir is working on a retrospective of Jeff’s life, and it will appear in the coming edition of our newspaper.

Here is Jeff’s obituary from NJ.com.

Rest in peace, Jeff. We will all miss you very much.

Drug store supplants shop, homes

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By Ron Leir
Observer Correspondent

KEARNY –

Developers had reason to cheer but also jeer in the wake of separate decisions by two of the town’s regulatory boards last week.

Kearny will be getting a new chain drug store on its main business district but the proposed conversion of a vacant box factory to residential lofts won’t be happening.

Last Tuesday, the Kearny Zoning Board of Adjustment voted 5-2 to approve an application filed by Mark Development Co., of New York and Massachusetts, to build a Walgreens Pharmacy at 453-467 Kearny Ave., partly on the site of the old Lynn Chevrolet property.

To make way for the 12,670 square foot, one-story building, including a drive-thru, and 41-space parking lot, the contractor will be tearing down the old auto showroom/ service center, the Irish Quality Gift Shop and the old Teddy’s bar, all on Kearny Ave., along with two houses on Quincy Ave. Read more »

Mayoral election challenge

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By Ron Leir
Observer Correspondent

HARRISON –

A newly minted Republican has thrown his hat in the ring for Harrison’s mayoralty.

In November, Erik Brachman, the president of the Harrison Board of Health, will oppose the Democratic nominee James Fife, who was appointed mayor by the Town Council after the sudden death of Raymond McDonough Feb. 12.

Three years ago, Brachman, 53, ran in the Democratic Primary as a candidate for a Second Ward seat on the Town Council and was defeated by Victor Villalta. Read more »

Now, there’s a ‘jury duty scam’

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By Karen Zautyk
Observer Correspondent

Recently, The Observer warned readers of a nationwide phone scam in which fraudsters pretending to be IRS agents are bilking money from unsuspecting taxpayers.

Well, there’s another phone scam out there, one that should be of specific interest to our readers in the Bergen County communities of North Arlington and Lyndhurst. However, everyone should be wary. The fraud is spreading to other areas.

Authorities have reported that Bergen County residents have been receiving calls from phony “Sheriff ’s Office” employees threatening them with arrest because they allegedly failed to show up for jury duty. It’s all a fraud. Read more »

KBOE OKs borough ‘transfer’

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By Ron Leir
Observer Correspondent

EAST NEWARK –

East Newark public school children have now officially begun their climb up a long ladder that could lead them to taking high school classes in Kearny.

That happened March 24 when the Kearny Board of Education voted 6-0 “… that, contingent upon the severing of the sending-receiving relationship between East Newark and the Harrison Public School District, the Board is ready, willing and able to receive and educate the students from East Newark in grades 9 through 12 at the Kearny High School.”

East Newark Mayor Joseph Smith characterized the KBOE’s action as “the first favorable step” along the path to possible separation from Harrison that would end a century-plus-old tradition.

“My understanding is that if we couldn’t overcome this hurdle, we couldn’t go any farther,” Smith said. “There’d been no sense spending any money [to continue the separation process] until we had that step completed.” Read more »

9 Nutley home burglaries solved, cops say

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They got the accused burglars but, unfortunately, none of the loot.

Nutley police said they’ve broken a string of residential burglaries, dating from late 2013, involving nine separate cases throughout the township, with the arrests of seven suspects.

On March 21, Nutley PD, working with Rutherford PD, arrested Wayne resident Steven Benedek, 61, on charges of burglary to three Nutley residences: one on Edison Ave. on Dec. 19, 2013; one on HIghfield Lane on Dec. 20, 2013; and one on Kingsland Ave. on Jan. 31.

Police said Benedek has a long history of burglary arrests in Nutley dating from 1972 and 1973. Read more »

Siblings busted by KPD

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By Karen Zautyk
Observer Correspondent

KEARNY –

An investigation that began in late February has resulted in the arrest of two Kearny brothers on drug and weapons charges, Kearny Police Chief John Dowie reported last week.

Dowie said the probe was launched after Vice Unit detectives developed information that drugs were being sold out of a residence on the 200 block of Chestnut St. Patrol units had also been called to the location in response to disorderly-conduct complaints from neighbors, Dowie said.

After surveillance and inquiries, detectives reportedly confirmed the sales and learned the occupants were allegedly in possession of at least one firearm.

On March 20, police applied to the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office for a probable cause, no-knock search warrant, which was granted and authorized by Superior Court Judge Fred Theemling. Read more »

DNA helps nab ‘Manor’ suspect

By Karen Zautyk
Observer Correspondent

Photo courtesy KPD Carlos Camacho

Photo courtesy KPD
Carlos Camacho

KEARNY –

A series of 2013 burglaries in the Manor section of town has been solved thanks to DNA evidence collected at one of the crime scenes, Kearny Police Chief John Dowie reported.

The suspect, already incarcerated in the Essex County Jail, has a criminal history dating to 1996, Dowie said. The break-ins occurred last summer and were concentrated in the residential area west of Kearny Ave., between Bennett Ave. and the Belleville Turnpike. Kearny police increased their uniformed and plainclothes presence in the neighborhood and were also making vacant-house checks.

“In one of the cases, the detailed crime-scene processing paid off,” the chief said.

Lt. Anthony Gouveia, checking a house whose owners were on vacation, discovered a break-in, advised headquarters and secured the scene. Dets. Ray Lopez and Stephen Podolski responded and collected DNA specimens, which were sent to the N.J. State Police lab for processing.

“We were notified recently that the DNA belonged to a career criminal with an extensive burglary history,” Dowie reported last week.

The suspect was identified as 45-year-old Carlos Camacho, who was found to be a current inhabitant of the Essex County Jail, having been charged in connection with a recent Newark robbery, police said. Read more »

Thoughts & Views: In harm’s way around the world

Anja Niedringhaus

Anja Niedringhaus

These days, when we’re used to getting our news so easily on the internet, we tend not to think twice about the degree of difficulty that may have been involved for the news-gatherer to get that story or photographer to snap that image.

Especially if the coverage of that particular event is being done in countries where guarantees of press freedoms are unheard of and journalists are targeted for threats or physical confrontations.

Such was the case last Friday, April 4, when an Afghan police commander shot and killed Anja Niedringhaus, a 48-year-old Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer for the Associated Press, and badly wounded AP reporter Kathy Gannon as they were preparing to cover the national elections in that country.

The Committee to Protect Journalists, an independent, nonprofit organization that promotes press freedom worldwide and which has tracked attacks on news employees, has logged 703 journalists murdered globally since 1992. Read more »

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