To the Editor: 

I have been a North Arlington resident for 14 years and I love it here. However, as the mother of two children, I am often at a loss for things to do with my family in town. When I look at nearby towns, I see they host various activities available to town members of all ages, such as fairs, street festivals and picnics.

My youngest child isn’t old enough to participate in recreational sports. The town doesn’t provide activities for the active 2- , 3- and 4-yearolds until they are eligible for recreational sports. I believe an imbalance has been created in North Arlington where public money is being directed primarily to special-interest organizations and very little to building community activities.

Just recently, we learned the school board is abolishing its pre-K program. This is an incredibly poor decision on the part of the school board. This action further alienates young families and gives them another reason to relocate to a town that offers pre-K.

With taxes going up again this year, it seems the mayor, council and the school board need to reassess their priorities.

I am willing to work to resolve the gap between the priorities of the mayor and council, and school board to meet the needs of the families in our town. I will gladly work with people interested in creating more community building social opportunities as well as working with parents to reinstate the pre-K program. I think these things are worth fighting for because if we the leaders of tomorrow don’t do it, no one will.

I am sure I speak for a lot of families who long for reasons to stay in North Arlington. But know that it is difficult to do so when the town does not seem willing to put time, energy and money into building a unified community. That is why I am running for Borough Council.

Kelly O’Malley Velez 

North Arlington 

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