At each town council meeting, Mayor Skibitsky allows the public to approach a microphone and comment on anything the town council has jurisdiction over. Skibitsky reminds the public to keep their comments to a maximum of 10 minutes. Throughout 2011, Skibitsky was questioned and criticized by residents for the placement of the HAWK pedestrian crossing located mid-block on Central Ave. Perhaps the Mayor, with his back up against a wall, felt that he needed reinforcements/allies, to attend meetings to bolster his unenviable position. The Mayor was unable to refute many of the facts from his own expert's reports that did not support his position or opinion on many of the issues concerning the installation of the pedestrian crossing.
The Fact of The Matter has learned that Mayor Skibitsky was allegedly denied support from police officers when one was asked to rally support for the Mayor back in 2011. Skibitsky didn't wait long to summon support from another source, local residents.....many of whom live nowhere near the HAWK pedestrian crossing. One such supporter resides on E. Broad St. closer to the Mountainside border than to Central & Cambridge, the HAWK location.
At first, these residents expressed their appreciation for all the hard work put in by members of the town council, leading the Westfield community. Like a well planned script, other residents began to attend meetings to advise the town council how wonderful the HAWK light was working and how safe it was to now cross Central Ave. without having to play a game of "Chicken" or "Frogger" with oncoming traffic.
TFoTM has never denied that the HAWK light has made crossing Central Ave., safer. What TFoTM has questioned is Mayor Skibitsky's non-expert claim that the current location of the HAWK light is the safest location. After all, Skibitsky's own expert engineer had originally placed the pedestrian crossing at the intersection of Central & Clover as did expert engineers hired by Union County. Mayor Skibitsky's well orchestrated political agenda got the light moved to it's current location.
Another resident, Tony Del Duca, has spoken in support of Mayor Skibitsky on numerous occasions but more recently has taken to the microphone to request that the Mayor stop the discussion on the HAWK pedestrian crossing. Alternative Press reporter Jackie Lieberman reported the following after Tuesday evening's council meeting:
"Resident Tony Del Duca then argued that the issue (HAWK) should be put to rest. “We have an ordinance that says we’re not moving this light, so why are we even talking about this?” he said. Go to the following link to view Lieberman's news story: http://thealternativepress.com/towns/westfield/articles/westfield-parks-could-go-smoke-free-firefighters
With all due respect Mr. Del Duca, it continues to be talked about because this is Westfield, New Jersey, The United States of America, which just happens to be governed by a democracy. The First Amendment covers something called "freedom of speech." It is a protected right that some are choosing to exercise despite your requests to silence those wishing to comment on the matter. TFoTM respects your right to make your request.
A couple months ago, Tony Del Duca left a town council meeting appearing disgusted. As he walked past reporter Lauren Barr of The Westfield Leader, he blurted out that maybe he would give Horace (Leader publisher) a call to complain about the coverage the local newspaper was giving the HAWK issue.
TFoTM asks Tony Del Duca, "Have you made that call yet?" "Are you aware of what Freedom of the Press is?"
Del Duca also needs to get his facts straight. The last time The Fact of The Matter checked, there was no such ordinance stipulating what Del Duca claims.....that “We have an ordinance that says we’re not moving this light, so why are we even talking about this?”
Perhaps Del Duca is referring to a hastily passed Resolution on the HAWK pedestrian light by Mayor Skibitsky and his council after Union County's expert consulting engineers recommended a traffic light at the corner of Central & Clover. TFoTM is not suprised at Tony Del Duca's tactic, if in fact he was aware that a resolution and an ordinance are two totally different things. After all, Mayor Skibitsky has presented information to the public as fact when it has been proven to be false with the support of official town documents such as expert engineering reports, police reports, and other data that contradicts the Mayor's claims and/or opinions.
With that being said, an ordinance is a law, whereas a resolution is an opinion.
TFoTM believes Mr. Del Duca knows what opinions are like.........they are like, well we won't repeat it here, but ..........everybody has one.
Let's stick to facts Tony.
/ˌrɛzəˈluʃən/ Show Spelled[rez-uh-loo-shuhn]
1. a formal expression of opinion or intention made, usually after voting, by a formal organization, a legislature, a club, or other group. Compare concurrent resolution, joint resolution.
2. a resolve or determination: to make a firm resolution to do something.
3. the act of resolving or determining upon an action or course of action, method, procedure, etc.
4. the mental state or quality of being resolved or resolute; firmness of purpose.
5. the act or process of resolving or separating into constituent or elementary parts.
1. an authoritative rule or law; a decree or command.
2. a public injunction or regulation: a city ordinance against excessive horn blowing.
3. something believed to have been ordained, as by a deity or destiny.
4. Ecclesiastical .
a. an established rite or ceremony.
b. a sacrament.
c. the communion. or·di·nance