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Friday, February 27, 2015

TFoTM Weekend

Westfield PD swears in new officers and promotes three supervisors.
Emergency Mobile Command Center on loan to another municipality, Westfield taxpayers foot the bill.
Westfield Soccer Association seeks to install temporary lighting at Kehler Stadium.

Details, editorial, and comments this weekend.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

WHS Appears to be on Lockdown at 12:30 pm

Westfield high school is currently holding all school bells, keeping all students in class, in school.
Westfield police are on the scene, it is unknown at this time what the holding of students in classrooms is for.
Police officers were seen walking around the Baptist church on Trinity Pl. while a plain clothes officer was walking the front of school on Dorian Rd.
WPD marked police vehicles are patrolling neighboring streets.
Updated:
All WHS school bells were held between 12:15 and 12:35 pm. at which time students remained in classrooms.  Westfield police personnel are on scene investigating.

Sunday, February 08, 2015

TFoTM Sunday Morning Funny Pages

     As reported in the news, Brian Williams, the anchor of NBC Nightly News, apologized for embellishing an erroneous story, a story he categorized as a conflation of memories from his own coverage of the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
     Williams has something in common with Westfield Police Chief Dave Wayman and Mayor Andy Skibitsky, they each have a tendency to "mis-remember" and "conflate."
     If you haven't already heard, Williams has announced he will step down from his position at NBC after fabricating and embellishing his involvement in a wartime helicopter flight that took on enemy fire.    
If only Wayman and Skibitsky would follow Williams' lead.

Conflategate




Chief Wayman really was at the Super Bowl, an "opportunity of a lifetime." 

Sunday, February 01, 2015

"Deflategate" vs "Waymagate"....Town Officials & Police Chief, Cheat the Taxpayer with "Hocus Pocus"

     One year ago, during the week leading up to "Super Bowl Sunday," the Town of Westfield's newly acquired emergency mobile command center and a platoon of police officers  were in Hoboken to stand guard at a street fair while Super Bowl XLVIII was played at MetLife Stadium in E. Rutherford, N.J..
     After the Super Bowl, Westfield Police Chief David Wayman read a prepared statement to the Town Council, and taxpayers, at a February 2014 council meeting stating, "The ability to work with Hoboken at the Super Bowl was just another unique opportunity and probably the opportunity of a lifetime."  A year later, and with the Super Bowl being played this year in Arizona under a black cloud of alleged cheating and an NFL investigation nicknamed "Deflategate", we
now know Wayman's words were a facade, another lie.
Military Vehicles were recently acquired by the WPD
     Mayor Skibitsky, Town Admin. Jim Gildea, and Mayor Andy Skibitsky had to justify to the taxpayers the purchase of a $300,000 machine when all the town needed in the aftermath of Super-Storm Sandy was a back-up generator for the municipal building.  Never before had the police department lost power, in any storm. that a generator couldn't restore.
To make the purchase look worthwhile, why not send it to Hoboken and tell everyone Westfield was requested as part of Super Bowl security?
     It was a well orchestrated show put on by town officials for the better part of 8 months following New Jersey's first Super Bowl.  It wasn't until November 2014 that Mayor Skibitsky would finally admit during a town council meeting, "We were not at the Super Bowl, I never said we were."  Mayor Skibitsky had been pressured to admit the truth in light of inquiries made into the questionable purchase and use of Westfield taxpayer funded equipment in other cities.
     Mayor Skibitsky must've forgotten that he allowed both his police chief and his Acting Mayor JoAnn Neylan to read prepared statements specifically stating that Westfield Police were at the Super Bowl with all its emergency response equipment to provide security along with the Office of Homeland Security, the FBI, New Jersey Office of Emergency Management, and NJ Transit.  Hanging today, in the front hallway of the Westfield Police Department, is a photo of Westfield's emergency response vehicles in front of a Roman numeral 48, making it appear as if the department had a hand in the protection of the iconic event.  What is not pictured is the emergency mobile command center sitting nearby.
Photo by Westfield Leader Newspaper
     What most people don't know is that the photo was taken on a pier in Hoboken while Westfield Police stood guard at a curling exhibition at the "Hoboken Huddle," a street fair for that cities cash-in or "money grab" during the week leading up to the Super Bowl.  Hoboken's security cost Westfield taxpayers thousands of dollars, another FACT that town officials refuse to admit.
     If it weren't for Mayor Skibitsky's relationship with Westfield's former disgraced parking official John Morgan, who now heads Hoboken's Parking Authority and still remains one of Skibitsky's political appointees to a Union County  committee, Westfield would never have been in Hoboken.
Hocus & Pocus
     As the old saying goes in politics, you gotta' pay to play.  In this case, the taxpayers paid dearly for Mayor Skibitsky and Chief Wayman to stage one expensive "playdate" with Hoboken.
TFoTM suggests that town officials keep their "toys" in town in the event the equipment is needed so that it is "ready and available" at a moments notice to service the residents of Westfield.
     Police Chief Wayman once claimed that in 20 minutes he could have Westfield's equipment packed up and on the move from Hoboken, arriving back in Westfield should an emergency arise.  What he doesn't tell you is that he might have to enlist the expertise of Harry Houdini or David Copperfield to pull that one off. Then again, both those magicians were experts in creating a facade much like Mayor Skibitsky and his magical assistant Chief Wayman.

Monday, January 26, 2015

The Militarization of the Westfield Police Department

     As a blizzard is set to hit the tri-state area, Westfield braces for what could be a record breaking storm across New Jersey.
General Wayman
     If you see military assault vehicles driving around Westfield tonight and tomorrow during the storm, driven by police officers, don't be alarmed.   There's no terrorist attack unless you consider Al-Qaeda to be disguised as Mother Nature.
     Westfield Police Chief David Wayman, aka "fobbit," has turned in his police uniform in exchange for the "fruit salad" display on his chest and requests that all subordinates refer to him as General Wayman for the duration of the storm.
"Deuce and a Half"
     If you don't already know, Westfield now owns a minimum of six military vehicles including a military personnel transport vehicle referred to as a "deuce and a half" often used by the national guard to rescue people from flood ravaged areas.
     No longer will the residents of Westfield have to flee to their rooftops to escape the rising waters of Mindowaskin Pond waiting to be rescued.
     What's next?  Maybe a helicopter or an amphibious vehicle?  Another example of wasteful spending and mismanagement?
     Westfield still has roads in need of repaving for over 25 years.  The reduction in public safety personnel within the police department and fire department, to all-time lows under Mayor Skibitsky's leadership, hasn't saved the taxpayer a dime as property taxes continue to rise and services are cut.
     Mayor Skibitsky just finds other ways to waste the surplus of money realized from these cuts.
     So, the next time Mayor Skibitsky tells residents he is operating a budget that includes salaries at a level comparable to 2006, don't believe the hype.  His "Doing more with less" campaign slogan is all smoke and mirrors.
Time to fire up the snowblower.


Saturday, January 24, 2015

Overnight Snowfall Snafu

     Westfield residents woke up this morning to find a blanket of snow on the ground measuring between 4 - 6 inches.  Westfield's Department of Public Works was out early plowing residential streets and by 10 am. had made at least one pass down a majority of the town's paved roadways.
     Rising temperatures seem to be helping melt remaining snow along with some pre-storm salting of roadways.
     The Westfield DPW has a new superintendent in charge and he appears to have better managerial skills than the recent retired Claude Shaffer, judging by the efficiency at which the DPW seems to be operating these days and an overall positive morale exhibited by the staff.
     The season's first major snowfall gave police the opportunity to issue summonses to motor vehicles parked in violation of the town code prohibiting parking on snow covered roadways in town that are marked with warning signs.
     A police officer was on W. Broad St. early this morning placing tickets on the windshields of cars parked along the curb that hindered plowing efforts to clear roadway from curb to curb.
     No doubt, Mayor Skibitsky is beaming, smiling ear to ear given the efforts of the DPW and WPD.
   




Monday, January 05, 2015

2015 Hangover Run: Counter-Terrorism Training or Tamaques Park Playdate?

     The fact of the matter is, Mayor Skibitsky finally admitted publicly that the Westfield police department and the town's emergency mobile command center had nothing to do with security at last years NFL Super Bowl contested at MetLife Stadium in E. Rutherford, N.J.   It was however, transported to Hoboken numerous times at the expense of the Westfield taxpayer.  TFoTM will admit, it did a great job guarding the recent "Hangover Run" in Tamaques Park on New Years Day........no terrorists in sight.
     The fact of the matter is, Westfield has no shared services agreement with the city of Hoboken, nor has it ever had one which is required to be on file in Trenton if one did exist.  This contradicts Councilman Frank Arena's claim that the town's emergency mobile command center was sent to Hoboken in 2014 under a "shared services agreement."
     In a news article titled "Westfield Police Participate In Counterterrorism Training," Westfield Leader newspaper reporter Paul Peyton quoted Westfield Police Chief Dave Wayman as
Tamaques Park, January 1, 2015 CJRRC "5K Hangover Run"
saying "The ability to work with Hoboken at the Super Bowl was just another unique opportunity and probably the opportunity of a lifetime."  Not one town official, including Mayor Skibitsky, corrected this lie by Police Chief Wayman.
      Is it because town officials would rather the taxpayer believe that the $300,000 mobile command center was a prudent purchase?  Do town officials think that leading the taxpayer to believe our police department was rubbing elbows with Homeland Security, the FBI, New Jersey Office of Emergency Management, and other prestigious law enforcement agencies at the Super Bowl, would justify taking the command center away from Westfield?
     We now know that Mayor Skibitsky and his Town Administrator Jim Gildea will divert and deflect from answering questions that will expose the truth.  This was evident during the 8 months it took for Mayor Skibitsky to finally admit the truth after his town administrator, his police chief, and his "Acting Mayor" JoAnn Neylan, lied to the taxpayers.
     Left with the embarrassment of wasting $300,000 on what Mayor Skibitsky calls a necessary purchase out of "redundancy," his police chief must now justify the purchase of the emergency mobile command center by hauling it around town to street fairs and road races.  Mayor Skibitsky and his police chief would like everyone to believe that these events are safe from terrorism when the mobile command center is on the scene.  The fact of the matter is that there has never been a perceived or credible threat to any of these events in the past.  Perhaps Mayor Skibitsky will make an appearance with the emergency mobile command center at a block party, in Westfield, in 2015.
     The final fact of this matter is that the emergency mobile command center was purchased as a demo model and never built to any original specifications, meaning Westfield tailored its specifications to meet what was already being hidden in Westfield, and what was the "apple of Chief Wayman's eye", long before the town council passed a bond ordinance authorizing its purchase.  While not a crime in the eyes of the Union County Prosecutor's Office, which Mayor Skibitsky will hang his hat on, its definitely an ethical violation to be determined by a state authority.
     Happy New Year Mayor!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Westfield Town Council Meeting

The Westfield Town Council will meet tonight at 8pm. in the court chambers of the municipal building located at 425 E. Broad St.
Date: Tuesday (tonight) 12-16-14
Time: 8pm.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Westfield Mayor Skibitsky Calls It Innuendo, TFoTM Provides FACTS

     Today, 12-10-14, this site and this story/editorial are dedicated to E.M.  It is E.M. that once asked, "You're a cop, what goes on behind the closed doors of town hall?"  "You never read about the dirt in the local newspaper."
     It would appear that facts have caused some cracks in Mayor Skibitsky's rose colored glasses.
Westfield Mayor Andrew Skibitsky likes to divert from the facts that are damning to his administration.  At a recent town council meeting the mayor couldn't help himself by claiming that facts, presented to him, were innuendo..
     Claiming facts to be "innuendo" is Mayor Skibitsky's excuse and defense anytime he can't defend himself or defend against criticism supported by facts.
PARIZEAU
     Case in point:  When asked whether the following "Confidential Police Department Memo," that was referenced at a town council meeting, is "innuendo" or fact, Mayor Skibitsky refused to answer.  Instead, he stated that innuendo is "always" presented.  He then changed his response to "regularly" presented.  Mayor Skibitsky has a bad habit of backpedaling.
     TFoTM will let its readers decide.
     Here is the "factual" memo that was referenced to.  In the memo, then Westfield Police Chief John Parizeau admits to evidence of stealing/theft by one of his superior officers, but chose to do nothing but cover it up and sweep it under the rug.
   
So much for the office of the chief of police abiding by the oath he took when placing his hand on the Bible.  It has been alleged that the superior officer caught stealing time was John Rowe, a very close friend to Parizeau and the current police chief David Wayman.


     At the same town council meeting, and caught off guard, one of Mayor Skibitsky's staunch supporters on the town council came to his defense and stated, "Why don't we investigate how you got your hands on a confidential memo."
ANSWER: Because your police department already investigated it and couldn't find out how TFoTM got our hands on the memo.  Just like how town officials couldn't find out how TFoTM obtained a hand written memo by then Captain Dave Wayman, that instructed the municipal building's custodial staff to keep the handicapped bathroom across from Wayman's office locked at all times and to not give the key out to anyone.  It was revealed that Wayman was using the handicapped bathroom as his own personal commode.

     The Westfield Police Department's Internal Affairs Division, led by Wayman and Lt. Chris Battiloro, now a police captain, conducted an investigation within the police department to try and find out how The Fact of The Matter was obtaining information.  Questionnaires were handed out to both sworn and civilian employees asking over thirty questions regarding the employees' on-duty and off-duty internet activity with regards to this website and its moderators.  While the investigation went nowhere, $$$thousands$$$ of Westfield taxpayer dollars that funded Wayman's investigation were wasted.
   
WAYMAN
      If that wasn't enough, town officials contacted the Union County
Prosecutor's Office and asked them to step in.  At the time, Chief Parizeau and Captain Wayman's "Elite" police department, as he now likes to call it, needed help.
     A Union County Grand Jury subpoena was issued and the wheels of justice began to spin again until they were stopped by the American Civil Liberties Union.  The ACLU stepped in to defend The Fact of The Matter and have the subpoena "quashed."  New Jersey's "Shield Law," that protects journalists from revealing sources, was cited.
     Ultimately, the subpoena was withdrawn after motions were made to the court by the ACLU, and town officials were left empty handed and embarrassed once again.  More wasted tax dollars because Mayor Skibitsky and his police department don't want the public to know what really goes on.

     So it's reasonably understandable why Mayor Skibitsky, allies on the town council, and other town officials, will go to any length to discredit this website and the information it obtains.
     TFoTM will continue to bring information to its readers that can't be obtained anywhere else.  Our avenues of information remain open and protected despite attempts by town officials to thwart the process by wasting thousands of taxpayer dollars to satisfy their own, in the words of Councilman Frank Arena, "self serving ad-nauseam propaganda" .
     To Mayor Skibitsky, Town Administrator Jim Gildea, and Police Chief David Wayman:
There is a reason why there are those that share information with The Fact of The Matter.  It's because, believe it or not, some town employees are disgusted with the nepotism, back room wheeling and dealing, wasted tax dollars, favoritism, and corruption that has permeated Mayor Skibitsky's administration.
     No different than when I reported to the town, prior to my retirement, that former disgraced Westfield Police Chief Barney Tracy was having illegal criminal history checks done on Westfield residents, members of the press, and a sitting councilman during the infamous parking decks debate.  It is because of the town's retaliatory tactics towards an employee reporting corruption that has forced current employees to remain silent for fear of retribution.  TFoTM  can't blame them and will continue to provide an avenue of relief.      
   

   
   

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Don't Be Fooled by Phone Solicitations for Police Officer Charitable Causes

   

 During this time of year, around the holidays when most people are in the "giving" spirit, your phone may ring from a solicitor calling on behalf of families of police officers killed in the line of duty.  They will represent themselves as a non-profit or non-for-profit organization.
   
DON"T BE FOOLED!

     I received a phone call today and once again, asked the following questions:
1.  What percentage of my donation goes directly to the families of police officers killed in the line of duty?
     Answer: After administrative fees, it all goes to the families.
*The problem here is that these organizations collecting donations can keep a hefty amount, sometimes up to 90% of your donation, for administrative fees.  That leaves 10% of your donation to the families in need.

2.  Where are you calling from to solicit the donation?
     Answer: New York, which was then changed to Michigan by the caller.  He admitted to be calling from his own home.
     The solicitor abruptly ended the phone call when I informed him he was speaking to a retired police officer and former executive board member of my local PBA.  He obviously called the wrong person.

*If you are so inclined to donate to any police organization, fund raiser, or law enforcement charity, please contact your local police department's Policeman's Benevolent Association and make a donation, or at least ask them what reputable law enforcement charities you can donate to that will apply your donation without the substantial "administrative fees" that the over the phone solicitors are pocketing.

*Westfield PBA Local 90 does not solicit donations over the phone.  They solicit them through the mail once a year.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Mayor Skibitsky Finally Admits Truth

At last night's Westfield town council meeting, Mayor Andy Skibitsky finally admitted, after 7 months, that the Westfield Police Department's newly purchased emergency mobile command center was, in fact, not part of the security detail or anywhere near MetLife Stadium on the day of Super Bowl 48 last February.
Previously, Skibitsky allowed his police chief David Wayman and Acting Mayor JoAnn Neylan to read prepared statements at council meetings stating that Westfield police were "at the Super Bowl" assisting other law enforcement agencies with security.
The fact of the matter is, and finally admitted to by Mayor Skibitsky, the emergency mobile command center was in Hoboken on a "Training exercise."
Actually, that training exercise was to guard a curling exhibition at the "Hoboken Huddle,"  a winter carnival staged for Hoboken's "cash in" on the Super Bowl.
TFoTM had reported that former Westfield Parking Director John Morgan, who is now Hoboken's parking czar, may have had something to do with Westfield's involvement but as of last night, Skibitsky and other town officials have remained silent on the issue.
Hoboken residents and police questioned Westfield's involvement.
It appears that Mayor Skibitsky and his police chief will say anything to justify the emergency mobile command centers purchase even if it means traveling to Hoboken, Atlantic City, and Philadelphia, for events unrelated to Westfield and paid for by the Westfield taxpayer.
Still unanswered by Mayor Skibitsky.......Why was the mobile command center and/or attendant vehicles being hidden at Sevell's garage, with Westfield Police decals on them, a month or more before the town council ever voted on whether or not to purchase the emergency equipment and before any specifications were drawn up for the equipment to be purchased as per New Jersey state bidding laws?
Hopefully taxpayers won't have to wait another 7 months for Mayor Skibitsky to tell the truth on that question.
More to follow on last night's town council meeting.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Westfield Town Council Meeting

The Westfield Town Council will meet tonight, November 25th, 2014.
Meeting starts at 8pm and is held in the court chambers of the municipal building located at 425 E. Broad St.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Westfield Mayor Skibitsky "Raking" In Property Taxes, "Shelling" Out Less Services

     Got leaves?  While Westfield Mayor Andy Skibitsky touts he is doing "More with Less," here is just another example of him doing "Less with More." 
     In the Town's annual newsletter to residents, the process of town-wide leaf collection is described.  While some residents believe the Department of Public Works schedules 3 leaf pickups for each street, the fact of the matter is that in the past, there have been two pickups.......at least that's what residents have been lead to believe when reading the Town's annual Leaf Collection directions in a mailer sent to every residence.

     Copy and paste the following Town of Westfield Leaf Collection link to read the most current leaf collection procedures.
http://www.westfieldnj.gov/index.asp?SEC=58167EE1-0E2B-4C48-874B-E9F87A9AF159&Type=B_BASIC

     What used to be multiple pickups around Westfield, now appears to be one for some neighborhoods because some pickups are scheduled so early in the leaf season that not enough leaves have fallen to justify a pickup.......but the Town DPW drives around looking for leaves......call it a "ghost pickup" at the direction of the Mayor.
     The Town of Westfield website no longer states the number of pickups for each leaf zone.
     As of today, November 22, 2014, it appears that some streets have yet to be cleared at all.  Looking at the trees, one could estimate that approximately 80-90% of a tree's leaves have fallen.  
     The Town has mandated that residents are not to place leaves in the street after December 5th.
Presumably, December 5th is the last day the Department of Public Works will be collecting curbside leaves.  If this is the case, why does the Mayor direct the Department of Public Works to start leaf pickup so early in the season when hardly any leaves have fallen?  Probably, so Mayor Skibitsky can ram his "Doing More With Less" slogan down the throats of the Westfield taxpayer.  Yet another false promise.  While the Town is collecting MORE taxes, residents are being provided LESS services as compared to past administrations.  This is nothing more than a Skibitsky "shell game."
     So what is a resident to do?  Rake leaves and place them in the street weeks before the Town has any intention of picking them up, hoping they might be removed?  That would be a violation of state law that stipulates leaves are not to remain in the street for more than 7 days.  
     Or, wave to the DPW workers as they ride through your neighborhood in the middle of October looking for leaves to pick up that have not fallen.  Don't forget that this "ghost" pickup is considered part of Mayor Skibitsky's "Doing More With Less" campaign.  Just another waste of Westfield tax dollars as referenced in a Letter to the Editor in the Westfield Leader newspaper.
   
     
  


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Westfield Student Struck by Motor Vehicle

At approximately 7:50am this morning an Edison Intermediate School student was struck by a motor vehicle in front of Lincoln School located on Westfield Ave.
Lincoln School houses the districts kindergarten students.
An eye witness states that the Summit Ave resident was riding a scooter when he entered the crosswalk and was struck by a motor vehicle. Apparently, the driver did not see the young student due to sun glare. The boy was rushed to the hospital with a possible concussion.

The following is a statement released from Edison Intermediate School Principal:

Subject: Edison School - Accident this morning 
Dear Edison School Families,

This morning, at approximately 7:50 am, an Edison School student was struck by a car on Westfield Avenue near Lincoln School.  Community members and the Westfield Police Department responded quickly to help the student.  The student is currently being transported to the hospital for medical care.  I do not have information on the student’s condition; however, I am hopeful that the student’s injuries are minor in nature.

This is an important reminder to all drivers that we must be aware of our surroundings and extremely careful when driving near a school zone.  I cannot express this point more emphatically.  In addition to the hundreds of students crossing streets near Edison School each morning, the winter sun shines directly down streets like Westfield and Rahway Avenues.   The sun’s position during morning drop off times can be blinding. 

We will continue to educate our students about the importance of crossing at designated locations and looking both ways before crossing any street.  I implore you to be careful while driving around our schools each morning, and please join me in wishing our injured student the absolute best.

Respectfully,

Matt Bolton

Sunday, November 09, 2014

"Procurement" of Police Mobile Command Center Continues to be Questioned

Councilman Frank Arena
     While Westfield Mayor Andy Skibitsky paraded his town attorney to the microphone at a recent town council meeting to read a statement from the Union County Prosecutor, which exonerated some from criminal actions regarding the emergency mobile command centers purchase, other state agencies continue to investigate the "procurement" of the apparatus.
     To no surprise, the Union County Prosecutor found no evidence of bribery which would have been needed to levy criminal charges against town employees involved in the purchase of the emergency mobile command center.  Bribery was never alleged by anyone before the prosecutors office stepped in to investigate.
     There are those that will continue to question why emergency equipment approved for purchase by the Westfield Town Council, in April of 2013, was found hidden in Sevell's garage in Westfield a month before any manufacturer picked up bid specifications to build the command center.
     Westfield Councilman Frank Arena has described a taxpayers right to question the town council as "self serving, ad nauseam, propaganda."  Perhaps Councilman Arena isn't accustomed to being questioned and held accountable for his actions.  Just answer the questions asked.
     TFoTM recommends the good councilman purchase some antiemetics.......but not with Westfield tax dollars.    

Monday, November 03, 2014

Westfield Town Council Meeting

Due to elections being held on Tuesday, Nov. 4th, the Westfield Town Council will meet this week on Wednesday (Nov. 5th) at 8pm.
Town Council meetings are held at 425 E. Broad St. and open to the public. 

Thursday, October 30, 2014

A Coach's Role: Westfield Board of Education Must Make It Clear

     The Bd. Of Ed. made a decision concerning the Westfield High School girls varsity basketball coach. It is widely believed that the decision was based on the failure of some players to play as much as they thought they should, or, more importantly, as much as their parents thought they should play.
     Inherent in the decision of the Board is the question of whether winning is a prime goal of sports or if it is more important that each player feel appreciated and/or each parent feel that his/her child is appreciated. 
     The Board must also temper its actions by remembering that some parents are trying to re-live their youth through their children.
     The Board has the legal right to remove coaches. Each member of the Board was elected on a promise of transparency. They should fulfill those promises.
     At present the Board claims it will not discuss Personnel matters. This usually refers to matters of a personal nature independent of the teacher’s/coach’s duties. (Notable exception to this was the teacher caught with pot)In the present matter, it seems the manner in which the coach acted as coach was the sole reason for the Board’s action.
     The Board will act as it wishes and for as long as it is allowed to so act. What must be done, however is to not question the dismissal of one coach but to demand to have defined, by the Board, the rules and regulations by which it judged him. That way, all coaches would know how to act in the future. If winning is to take a back seat to the feeling of the players that they are appreciated, then that should be the criterion for each sport.
     The Board should be required to set forth a standard to be followed by each and every coach. To do less leaves the coaches open to uneven criticism. What is bad conduct for a basketball coach is equally bad for a football coach etc. etc. etc.
     If a coach is expected to win, then say so. If he/she is required to play all his/her players then let everyone know in the beginning that winning is just desirable as opposed to the aim of the team.
     There is no need to expose what the Board claims to be private. Let the Board however avoid the embarrassment it now suffers by announcing the standards by which it has and will judge coaches in the future. Let the Board also announce its position on winning so that the children and the parents will be able to know where they stand before they decide to try out for a sport. At least the children should know if they can be on a winning team or play with a group who have other goals.

Westfield Mayor Skibitsky's Deceit and Denial: HAWK Pedestrian Light Location Causing Confusion

     Central Ave. resident Adina Enculescu approached the microphone during open public comment at the last Westfield Town Council meeting.
     She took the opportunity to remind Mayor Skibitsky that the 18th motor vehicle accident between Clover St. and the HAWK Pedestrian Crossing Signal had occurred in front of her house.  The traffic signal is at the base of Enculescu's driveway, confusing some motorists, slowing down to make a left turn onto Clover St., thinking the driveway is an intersection where they can turn left.
     Mayor Skibitsky quickly reminded the resident that most of the accidents have occurred near the intersection of Central Ave. & Clover St., the location where the town's consulting engineer and a Union County analysis had recommended a traffic signal be installed.  In the 8 years prior to the installation of the mid-block HAWK Pedestrian Signal, there were a total of 9 accidents along this stretch of Central Ave. leading up to Clover St.  Of those 9 accidents, 7 included vehicles stopped at, or attempting to turn left onto, Clover St.  In the 4 years since the installation of the HAWK, there have been 18 accidents.  Mayor Skibitsky is 100% correct in his statement that most of the accidents have occurred near the intersection of Clover St. & Central Ave.
     One has to wonder what Mayor Skibitsky was thinking after two engineering firms, one hired by Westfield, recommended that the intersection of Central & Clover be controlled with a signal.  Both engineering firms agreed with the inventor of the HAWK signal, Dr. Richard Nasi, that the signal be placed at the intersection where statistics have revealed is a safer location for the pedestrian crossing..  In FACT, the inventor of the HAWK pedestrian signal concluded, after field testing, that a mid block pedestrian crossing is LESS safe.  Mayor Skibitsky's non-professional opinion will attempt to have you think otherwise.
     In a 2005 Traffic Calming and Safety Report, Westfield's consulting engineer Gordon Meth wrote the following after he had conducted his own analysis of the intersection of Central Ave. & Clover St.
  "There is concern about the difficulty turning left from the east side of Central Avenue, since this traffic has no connection to a roadway with a traffic signal." 
The report also states, "Construct a pedestrian activated traffic signal at this location and relocate crosswalk to it."
There is some confusion as to where the author was indicating "this location" to be.  The report suggests Central Ave. & Cedar St. but we now know that residents of Cedar St. strongly protested a light at that location.
     Union County hired its own engineering firm to analyze the issue.  A 2004 report by the Louis Berger group that predates the town's consulting engineer's report, clearly states the following in the report's conclusion leaving no doubt where Union County recommended the signal to be placed.
     "Based on the above analysis, School crossing Warrant 5.0 is satisfied at Intersection of Central Avenue and Clover Street.  The INSTALLATION OF PEDESTRIAN SIGNAL will certainly improve the safety of elementary school-age pedestrians, within the vicinity of the neighborhood."
     Mayor Skibitsky has stated that the current location has been approved by County and State officials.  What he doesn't tell you is that Union County officials "rubber stamped" Skibitsky's hastily approved town council resolution to accept the current location of the HAWk pedestrian light.  Union County officials stated that Westfield chose the location, not Union County.  Skibitsky's answer to the question of why there has been a significant increase in accidents on Central Ave. between the HAWK pedestrian light and Clover St......."Accidents happen all the time."  Nice try Mayor.  You're entitled to your own opinion but not your own FACTS.  TFoTM will stick to the facts and data gathered on this issue.
     Both Union County and the State of New Jersey would have approved the intersection of Central & Clover based on professional studies and reports filed.
     Unfortunately, many of Mayor Skibitsky's Ward 3 voting block wouldn't have.  Once again, politics ruled.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Union County Prosecutor Contradicts Westfield Mayor Skibitsky & Town Attorney

     Westfield Mayor Andy Skibitsky and the Town's attorney Russell Finestein state that they did not know of any investigation into the purchase of the Westfield Police Department's emergency mobile command center.  Westfield Police Chief David Wayman has denied any knowledge of an investigation.  Ignorance and denial do not mean that there was no investigation.
     While the politicians prefer to lead you to believe there was no investigation, I attach a letter from the Prosecutor of Union County previously released by Westfield Town Attorney R. Finestein which blatantly shows everyone that there was, in FACT, an investigation. 
     Just because the prosecutor did not find criminal activity, this does not mean that everything was done properly.  That will be determined by another authority.



Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Unofficial Poll

Cast your vote (to the right of this page) regarding the Westfield Board of Education's decision to fire Westfield H.S. Girl's Varsity Basketball head coach Joe Marino.

Votes can only be cast from a laptop or desktop computer. Some "smartphones" do not display the poll to the right of this page.

Monday, October 20, 2014


Town Council Meeting

Address:

Westfield Municipal Building425 East Broad StreetWestfieldNJ07090

Friday, October 17, 2014

Westfield Board of Education "Fouls Out" WHS Girls Basketball Coach

A quote hanging in the gym of a New Jersey high school reads......."Let the fans cheer.  Let the referees officiate.  Let the players play.  Let the coaches coach."
   
     A recent decision by the Westfield Board of Education has caused many, associated with the Westfield High School girls varsity basketball team, to holler "foul!"
     The members of the board of education voted not to renew head coach Joe Marino's coaching contract. Why?
     The board of education has decided that the team needs a new head coach and that despite Marino's proven success as a head coach, taking Westfield girls basketball from the basement of Union County basketball to a Union County Championship, appearances in state tournament play, multiple "1000" point career scorers, and recognition and respect amongst opponents, the board feels a change is necessary.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Mayor Skibitsky Acting as Mayor in the Absence of the Acting Mayor

     Westfield Mayor Andy Skibitsky made an appearance at Tuesday evening's town council meeting.      Skibitsky's 2014 attendance record has been less than stellar and when he was greeted with "Welcome back Mayor," he looked like he wished he had missed this meeting.
     Mayor Skibitsky has become predictable and his emotions tend to get the best of him when he is confronted with facts that refute his opinions.
     Case in point......on Tuesday night, Skibitsky continued to mislead the public regarding the safety of the HAWK pedestrian crossing on Central Ave. at the intersection of a residential driveway across from a cul-de-sac'd Cambridge St.
     Skibitsky reminded the public in attendance that "The HAWK light is working as intended."  Guess what Mayor Skibitsky, the crossing guard holding up a STOP sign, and crossing pedestrians at Clover St. for decades was working as intended with far less accidents occurring.
     The facts are the facts and here they are........In the 8 years leading up to the installation of the HAWK pedestrian mid-block crossing, there were a total of 9 motor vehicle accidents at or near the intersection of Central Ave. & Clover St. with 7 out of the 9 accidents occurring while a vehicle was slowing down or stopped to make a left turn onto Clover St.. (The reason why residents had requested a traffic light at the location.)  Since the HAWK installation a little over 4 years ago, there have been 18 vehicle accidents between the HAWK crossing and Clover St.
     Mayor Skibitsky was reminded that it doesn't take a rocket scientist to realize that something has changed that has caused the increase in accidents.  If you believe Westfield resident and Skibitsky lemming Tony Del Duca, its because of an increase in traffic from the Clark Bally's gym.  Nice try Tony.
     Skibitsky has repeatedly downplayed the lights location as a reason for the increase in accidents stating the accidents are happening when the light is not activated.  Well then Mayor Skibitsky, perhaps the lights location at the base of a residential driveway is being confused as an intersection to unsuspecting or out of town motorists?  Nope, way too obvious to this mayor.
     Mayor Skibitsky's ego and stubborn stance on this proven dangerous pedestrian light location will not allow him to admit a mistake was made.  The Westfield town council has been collared on a leash by a mayor that refuses to allow an independent evaluation of the lights effectiveness and safety.
     Ultimately, Mayor Skibitsky's hostile and agitated demeanor on Tuesday evening was a tell tale sign that he refuses to admit a mistake even when confronted with facts that contradict his non-expert observations and opinions.    
     Mayor Skibitsky should never trust that a document from his police chief, detailing the number of accidents at a particular location, is accurate.  That's a proven fact.

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Westfield Town Council Meeting
Tonight: October 7, 2014 (Tuesday)
Time: 8 pm.
425 E. Broad St.

Who will show up to the meeting as Mayor of Westfield?
Will Skibitsky keep his "no-show streak" alive?

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Here We Go Again....Another Accident at the HAWK Pedestrian Light

At approximately 4:15pm today, another motor vehicle accident occured at the Hawk Pedestrian Light on Central Ave.
At this point TFoTM has lost count of the number of accidents that have taken place at this ill advised, and proven, unsafe location for a mid block crossing that was initially recommended to be located at the intersection of either Cedar or Clover a couple hundred feet to the north.
The driver of the Volvo station wagon, a Westfield resident, stated she had slowed down as she approached the flashing amber lights of the HAWK light that had been activated by a pedestrian when she was struck from benind by another southbound vehicle.
Both vehicles sustained extensive damage requiring a tow truck to remove them from the roadway.
The Volvo was pushed through the crosswalk and came to a stop over 50 feet away.  Fortunately, there was no pedestrian injury or fatality this time.  Is it only a matter of time?  Accidents at this location are happening at a rate not seen at any other location with a mid block crossing and statistics have proven that the location is unsafe.
With school in session less than 3 weeks, pedestrian traffic at this location has increased and so will the accidents. 
Pedestrians are being warned to seek alternatives to crossing Central Ave at this location due to the frequency of accidents that have occurred since this light was approved my Westfield Mayor Andy Skibitsky and the Westfield Town Council after it was recommended by a traffic safety engineer to be installed at a nearby intersection.




Politicians are MIA after Devastating Fire

     See "letter to the editor" below, that appeared in last weeks edition of The Westfield Leader.  Mayor Skibitsky is on "cruise control" during his unprecedented third consecutive stint as Mayor of Westfield.  There has always been an unwritten agreement in Westfield politics that after two terms as mayor, you step aside for someone else to lead the town.  Mayor Skibitsky thumbed his nose to this gentleman's agreement when he sought a third term last year.  
     He is only keeping the seat warm for the next Republican candidate.  Clear indication that he is keeping his name in politics for a loftier position in Trenton or just maybe the party didn't have a bonafide candidate to run against a strong and well liked Democratic challenger in former Councilman David Haas.
     Once again, Mayor Skibitsky was absent from Tuesday's (9/16/14) town council meeting.  At this rate, his absenteeism is approaching 50%.  Like the Mayor says, "We are doing more with less."


Saturday, September 13, 2014

Westfield Police Promotional Exam Results

The Westfield Police Department's promotional exam results are in and there are no surprises. TFoTM will follow up with further details

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Report Illegal Students, Receive $50 Gift Card

Bound Brook schools are offering students a $50 gift card to report students that attend Bound Brook schools but are not residents of the town.
Should the Westfield Board of Education consider the same initiative.
Click on the following link to view story.

http://www.nj.com/somerset/index.ssf/2014/08/bound_brook_school_district_rewards_program.html#incart_river

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Westfield Mayor Skibitsky and Acting Mayor Neylan Continue to Mislead Taxpayers

Westfield Police Chief David Wayman
     Last month, the Westfield Town Council meeting featured Acting Mayor JoAnn Neylan claim that the Westfield Police Department was at this years NFL Super Bowl to assist other local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies when asked why the emergency mobile command center is being used out of town borders.  At last weeks town council meeting, Mayor Andy Skibitsky refused to answer a simple question about the whereabouts of Westfield's taxpayer funded emergency mobile command center on Super Bowl Sunday.  It has been revealed that the WPD was in Hoboken for that city's cash grab the week leading up to the Super Bowl.  In the photo below, featured on the front page of The Westfield Leader newspaper, Westfield police vehicles were photographed in front of Super Bowl roman numerals in HOBOKEN.
     Mayor Skibitsky has been asked repeatedly, "Were Westfield police officers and the emergency mobile command center AT THE SUPER BOWL in EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY held at METLIFE STADIUM."  His answers to the questions have included, "Please continue," "We've gone over this before," "I'm not going to repeat myself," and "We've discussed this at great length."  All typical evasive answers by a politician refusing to answer truthfully.  The fact of the matter is, Mayor Skibitsky has never answered the question.
     Mayor Skibitsky has yet to prove that Westfield Police Department was anywhere on the grounds of MetLife Stadium during this years Superbowl, yet TFoTM has provided facts with proof that the WPD was invited to Hoboken to police a street fair during Super Bowl week.
     When asked if former Westfield Parking Director John Morgan, who is currently the Hoboken parking director, was responsible for bringing Westfield taxpayer funded equipment and manpower to Hoboken, Mayer Skibitsky refused to answer.  
     At this point, it is clear that Mayor Skibitsky and his Acting Mayor, JoAnn Neylan have lied repeatedly to the Westfield taxpayers about the actual whereabouts of police equipment and manpower during the Superbowl.  Those lies were started when Westfield Police Chief David Wayman approached the microphone at a council meeting in early February of this year, to read a prepared statement claiming that the Westfield Police Department had, "the ability to work with Hoboken at the Super Bowl" when in fact they were asked to take part in "Hoboken Huddle" within the city limits of Hoboken.
     Not one town official has been able to prove that the Westfield Police Department with it's equipment, vehicles, and manpower were ever at the Super Bowl, but instead, wasting Westfield tax dollars to the benefit of Hoboken.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Tonight: Westfield Town Council Meeting

The Westfield Town Council will meet tonight 8/12/14 at 8pm.
Meetings are held in the municipal building's courtroom and are open to the public.
Will Mayor Skibitsky make an appearance for the first time in nearly two months?

Thursday, August 07, 2014

2014: Westfield's Racial Divide

Recent events might lead one to believe that Westfield Police Chief David Wayman continues to provoke controversy within the African American community.  TFoTM will follow up with evidence that will prove Mayor Skibitsky and his former town attorney were forewarned of an ill-fated police chief selection process.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Westfield Police Chief Wayman Continues to "Run Amuck"

     In the upcoming days and weeks, Westfield Police Chief David Wayman will be saying "Goodbye" to several police officers.  Officers Harold Caulfield, Lisa Perrotta, and Scott Rodgers, all with 25 years plus in the pension system, are hanging up the gun belt and badge.
Why now?
     Perhaps Governor Chris Christie's pension and benefits reform might have something to do with their decision or the "writing is on the wall" with regards to the current state of affairs under Wayman's tumultuous leadership.
     Regardless, TFoTM wishes the rumored retiring officers the best of luck.
     Will Chief Wayman seize the opportunity to integrate the police department with new hires?  Recent hires include numerous Linden connections and ties to the corrupt Barney Tracy regime.
Not since the hiring of Preston Freeman over ten years ago, has the Town of Westfield hired an African American officer.  With the retirements of Ron Allen, Sandy Chambers, and Greg Hobson, Westfield needs to address why Parizeau and Wayman have not hired an African American.  African American dispatchers have left Westfield for other  police departments after being declined employment in Westfield as full time sworn police officers.
Why?
Ask Police Chief  Wayman why.
TFoTM knows why, we won't be "bamboozled" "hoodwinked" or "run amuck."

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Auto/Pedestrian Accident

     7/23/14
     At approximately 4:35 pm, a pedestrian was struck by a motor vehicle at the intersection of South Ave. & Boulevard.  The pedestrian appears to have been crossing South Ave. and was struck by the black Nissan Maxima shown in the photos which was traveling westbound on South Ave.  The Nissan's windshield was shattered and the pedestrian/victim was thrown several feet.  Out of respect for the victim TFoTM will not publish photos taken that include the pedestrian/victim.
     Westfield police were on the scene shutting down the intersection at Westfield Ave. & South Ave., Central Ave & South Ave., as well as all side streets in between.
     The annual Westfield Downtown Pizza Run is scheduled for tonight to start at 7 pm.  Area roads will be at a standstill as police investigate the accident.
     The Westfield police department's Traffic Safety Bureau as well as the Detective Bureau are on the scene leading the investigation.
Details to follow.


Monday, July 14, 2014

Town Council Meeting: Vacation is Over

The Westfield Town Council will meet tomorrow night (7/15/14) at the municipal building located at 425 E. Broad St.
The meeting is open to the public and scheduled to start at 8pm. 
Westfield Town Council meetings are held in the municipal court chambers. 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

WPD Chief Wayman: Counter-Terrorism Exercise or Expo Salesman



TFoTM is in the process of confirming the whereabouts of the Westfield Police Department's emergency mobile command center.  Sources have indicated that the MSOC is being showcased in Atlantic City, New Jersey, once again, at another expo.
     The Police Security Expo event is being held in the Atlantic City Convention Centre on June 24th & 25th.  "This event provides the Goods, Products and services relating to the industry associated with Law, Security, Governments, Safety and Homeland Security Professionals. The event will be celebrating the 28th Anniversary of the Police Security. This event is considered as one of the nation's largest showcase of goods, products and services related to many security agencies and industries. One of the unique aspects of the Police Security Expo is that it organizes the best displays for its exhibitors to display or to introduce their new products and services related to this industry."

TFoTM asks Mayor Skibitsky and town council members the following:

1.  Who authorizes the use of the mobile command center outside of Westfield?
2.  How much Westfield taxpayer money is spent when the mobile command center leaves the borders of Westfield to attend an expo?
3.  Why is Westfield's emergency mobile command center being showcased or advertised by the police department in a city over 100 miles away?
4.  Is the emergency mobile command center ready and available should an emergency arise in Westfield?
5.  How much taxpayer money is being spent to send Westfield police officers to an expo?  Hotel accommodations, meals, fuel, salary, overtime?
6.  Is the Town of Westfield and/or police department involved in any contract to showcase the emergency mobile command center as an exhibitor on behalf of the manufacturer, specifically Robert Mount & Power Innovations of Utah?
7.  Could this be considered wasteful spending, mismanagement of town resources, and deceptive actions by police Chief David Wayman, Mayor Andy Skibitsky, and Town Administrator Jim Gildea?

TFoTM asks the Westfield Taxpayer.....How are the potholes on your street?

  

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Mayor Skibitsky Contradicts Police (PBA) Union Contract

     On the night of June 3rd, 2014 at a Westfield Town Council meeting, Mayor Andy Skibitsky declared that Westfield police officers are "volunteers."  Does the police department's PBA union contract allow volunteer police officers?  Mayor Skibitsky has put his foot in his mouth once again..
     The Westfield Police Department patrolled the city of Hoboken's "Hoboken Huddle" street fair the week before the NFL's Superbowl 48 and also during Hoboken Lepre-Con celebrating St. Patty's Day.
     Watch the following video to hear from the "Horse's Mouth" (Skibitsky) the answer to a question that has lingered for over 3 months.  
     The fact of the matter is, Skibitsky refuses to tell the taxpayers how much money was wasted by allowing Westfield Police Chief Dave Wayman to send equipment and manpower to street fairs in Hudson County where ex-Westfield Parking Director John Morgan is now employed.
     Once again, with his back against the wall, Skibitsky gives a response indicating he must think that the taxpayer is stupid enough to believe, apathetic enough not to care, or just has no clue of the mismanagement and misappropriation of tax dollars.
     TFoTM asks: How are the potholes on your street?
Read related story at the following internet link:
http://07090.blogspot.com/2014/04/hoboken-huddle-sacks-westfield-taxpayer.html

video



Saturday, June 07, 2014

TFoTM 400,000 Pageviews

The Fact of The Matter has hit 400,000 pageviews since December 1, 2010.
Thank you to all those that have logged on.

Thursday, June 05, 2014

It's 5 O'Clock Somewhere

     Today is the day that Westfield restaurants holding conditional liquor licenses will now be able to serve alcohol directly to patrons across, or seated, at a bar.  
     Councilman Jim Foerst stated publicly, at a recent town council meeting, that his vote was ultimately swayed in favor of the ordinance change by the fact that his wife and her fellow McKinley mom's group had nowhere to go and meet to enjoy a casual drink without ordering food.  PRICELESS.
     Councilman Frank Arena has held his re-election campaign at another Ferraro's location (off S. Elmer St.)  No need to recap his vote.
     Councilwoman JoAnne Neylan, Chairwoman of Mayor Skibitsky's Public Safety Committee, and an employee of Councilman Foerst, once downplayed the need for Westfield's fire department ladder truck to respond to the fire that demolished Ferraro's.  The ladder truck was rendered useless because the FD was lacking the manpower to man the apparatus.  Gotta' love the town council cutbacks in FD manpower.  Fits right into Mayor Skibitsky's "Doing More With Less" budget claims.  Councilwoman Neylan had stated that the truck is primarily used for "scenic aerial views." DISINGENUOUS. (Neylen's favorite word)  Forget the fact that the ladder truck is PRIMARILY used for aerial rescue, and fighting a fire from above through a vented roof. 
     TFoTM wonders if Mayor Skibitsky's Friday night pilgrimage to La Famiglia Sorrento on Central Ave. will continue. 
     Don't worry Westfielders, Councilman Sam Della Fera is a stickler for the law because he is a lawyer, just in case you have missed the number of times he has reminded attendees at council meetings.  As the chairman of Mayor Skibitsky's Finance Committee, he will be right on top of the 50-50 stipulation in the ordinance that requires an equal distribution of alcohol and food to be served at establishments governed by the amended ordinance.  Don't hold your breath.
     In closing, Westfield has had restaurants with bars.  How many bars will Westfield now have with restaurants as an afterthought?
     TFoTM hopes Hershey's Deli doesn't try to obtain a liquor license.  Could you imagine them having to hire someone to check ID's at lunchtime?   
     TFoTM wishes the Ferraro family the best of luck, as well as all the other establishments that will reap the benefit of the revamped town ordinance regarding how liquor will now be served at establishments once restricted.  
     Long live the BYOB!!!!