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Community Forum Invitation

To the Citizens of Hasbrouck Heights
From: Mayor William J. Torre
Date: September 5, 2000

Dear Citizens:

I invite all residents to attend two community forums scheduled for September 25th and 26th at 7:30 p.m. at the VFW in Hasbrouck Heights for the purpose of discussing proposals for the future location of your municipal building.

Following the devastating fire at the Municipal Building on December 10th, 1999 the Council and I have been working nonstop to reach what appeared at the time to be a seemingly unattainable set of goals: first, to get your Borough Government back in operation, second, to continue the business of your government, third to focus on maximizing the insurance claim at the highest amount possible for the tax payers and fourth, to look at various sites, including the Hamilton Avenue site for rebuilding the Municipal Building.

Our tasks have been daunting, but I am pleased to report that we have succeeded in achieving the first three goals beyond my wildest expectations. Borough Government and it’s services were basically back on line shortly after the fire thanks to the pride and dedication of our borough employees including Fire, Police, Administration and DPW, but not without constant attention to problems caused by the fire and the constraints of our temporary quarters. As I previously announced, we have reached a very favorable insurance settlement in excess of $4,500,000.00 on the construction portion of the claim, a huge win for the tax payers. I am extremely proud of the intensely hard work that has been done by all borough volunteers, departmental employees and the council to get were we are today.

We recently held an initial community forum on August 8th for the purpose and with the intent to discuss the most viable proposal with the residents in the immediate vicinity of the Boulevard between Central and Madison Avenues to seek their input and comment. As I noted at this forum, we were not there to present alternatives nor to discuss the financial impact on the proposal as these issues and alternative plans would be thoroughly discussed at the upcoming community forums. The purpose and intent of the initial forum was indeed achieved as the proposal is being modified to address the concerns and comments of our residents to the best extent possible.

We are now at a point were we are ready to present the facts including alternative plans to all of our residents at a series of community forums. Prior to the upcoming community forums, there will be a town wide mailing of facts on the most viable proposals for the location of your municipal building including the impact on the neighborhoods and impact on taxes. I also wish to assure you that the proposed Library Senior Citizens project will not be negatively impacted by any proposal considered. Our objective is to take your input and comment into consideration in making these most important decisions that will effect the entire community both now and for future generations.

I urge all of you to get the facts, do not rely upon rumor, speculation or conjecture. Make every effort to attend the community forums on September 25th & 26th, give us a chance to present the facts, keep an open mind, give us your input and comments.

Open community, forums such as those scheduled for September 25th & 26th at the VFW are your opportunity to share your thoughts with those who have been elected to serve you.

Very truly yours,

Mayor William J. Torre

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