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Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Westfield Town Mismanagement Jeopardizes the Safety of Schoolchildren

The Town of Westfield has an ordinance (Sec. 24-5) that specifically states, "The owner or tenant of land abutting or bordering upon the sidewalk and gutters of public streets, avenues, and highways in the town shall remove all snow and ice from any laid sidewalk of any kind in front of such land within 12 hours of daylight after the same shall fall or be formed thereon.  Where ice is frozen to the sidewalk it should be removed or covered with sand or ashes."
Go to the following link to view the town ordinance.

     At last nights town council meeting the following question was asked,  "Mayor Skibitsky, who owns the sidewalk at the end of the Cambridge Rd. cul-de-sac that delineates the end of Cambridge Rd. from Central Ave?"  After a pause, Mayor Skibitsky responded, "The Town does." 

Mayor Andrew Skibitky and 3rd Ward Councilman Mark Ciarrocca have expressed their desire to see that pedestrians crossing Central Ave., at the recently constructed cul-de-sac intersection of Cambridge Rd., do so at what they believe to be the safest place to cross the street, especially for schoolchildren. 
The "Hawk" pedestrian light has not been activated yet, but a crossing guard is still located at this "traffic hot spot" to assist schoolchildren in crossing busy Central Ave.
If that's the case, then why has the sidewalk leading to the crosswalk not been shoveled?  If this crossing "hot spot" is so important, why has the town turned a "cold shoulder" to the safety of schoolchildren using this crosswalk?

The fact of the matter is that the Town of Westfield has neglected to shovel its property causing a safety hazard for schoolchildren attempting to access this crosswalk.  This snow has been piled on the crosswalk's adjacent sidewalk not 12 hrs, not 24 hrs, not one week, but weeks without being cleared.

     If Westfield Police are going to issue snowbound motor vehicles parked, for longer than 48 hrs, on Cowperthwaite Pl, who in the town administration building should they issue a summons to for not clearing the snow from the town owned sidewalk at Cambridge Rd. and Central Ave?

     On Thursday, January 20th, a response from Mayor Skibitsky's Executive Assistant was received after an email was sent to the members of the Westfield Town Council advising them of a similar hazard in front of Victoria's Secret.  The response was:

"Your e-mail has been received by the Mayor and Council. Thank you for your report.  The abutting property owner will be notified of their responsibility in this matter."

Joan Thermann
Executive Assistant to Mayor Andrew Skibitsky

See related story at

Should we expect Mayor Skibitsky's Executive Assistant, Joan Thermann to email herself the same message?
Once again, Mayor Skibitsky has to be questioned about his claim of "No Diminished Services in 2011."

Mayor Skibitsky, may we suggest that a certain backhoe seen sitting idle on a Friday afternoon for 2 hours be dispatched down to the location of Central Ave. and Cambridge Rd. 



  1. Adina Toescu-EnculescuWednesday, February 02, 2011

    One hour ago, I took a few pictures of the crosswalk planted five months ago in front of my house, in the middle of the block on Central Avenue. Nobody has cleaned the snow from the sidewalk separating Cambridge Road from Central Ave for the last 8-10 days. All this time Mark Ciarrocca and the Mayor have pretended that they are concerned of the wellbeing of the children, of the pedestrians, of us the residents. No pedestrian, and for sure no child could cross Central Ave in this "hot spot” without experiencing a very hazardous and unsafe situation. This is a live example of how they can put our properties and our lives in danger without taking any responsibility. Not only they ignore their constituents’ concerns but they treat us with no respect like they are the ones who pay our taxes.

  2. A crossing guard isn't needed for this location, you need a damn Sherpa to cross that.

  3. Has anyone asked the county to clear it?Don't they plow central Avenue?