The Pennington Borough Council convened on Monday, February 7 for their regular meeting. Mayor Davy announced that the Council received a communication from the Pennington Democratic Organization regarding filling the vacancy on the Council left after the resignation of Beverly Mills. The candidates put forward were Katrina Angarone, Art Firestone, and Carol Cole.
Each candidate was given the opportunity to speak to the Council regarding their desire to fill the vacant position. Carol Cole spoke first: “While I am very grateful that you would consider my appointment to the Council, I think I will withdraw my name from nomination in favor of Kate. Having checked out her credentials and her long experience in the State, I think she would be a lovely candidate to be a member of the Council. I thank you all very much.”
Art Firestone was not able to attend Monday’s meeting due to a prior obligation.
Angarone addressed the Council expressing her thanks for the opportunity. She spoke to the Council about her life beyond her resume stating that she considers herself a Jersey girl even though she is a transplant. Born in Massachusetts, Angarone moved to Monmouth County while in grade school. She described her upbringing as “thrifty” as the child of practical New Englanders.
Pennington was the eventual choice for Angarone and her husband after an extensive search of where they would live and raise a family. “This is a welcoming community of smart and engaged residents and we are very glad to be part of it.”
Angarone has spent the last twenty years at the NJ Department of Environmental Protection, currently as Associate Commissioner for Science and Policy, according to the NJ.gov website. Her experience extends to the areas of policy development for land use, water, public health, planning, and emergency response. “You can see all of that on my resume. What you may not be able to see…is that for over two decades I have lived the principles of my agency. Principals that I firmly believe are applicable to all government. These are to follow the law, follow the science, listen to all sides, find the balance, and to be transparent.” Angarone previously served on the Shade Tree Committee for Pennington Borough.
Borough Council member Chico Marciante almost immediately nominated Angarone to the vacant Council position. There was a wave of seconding of the nomination. The vote was unanimous and Angarone gratefully accepted the position. Borough Attorney Walter Bliss administered the oath of office.
Two new officers joined the Pennington Police Department. Patrol Officer Tatiana Domingo was born in Brooklyn, NY, and resided there until she was 10 years old. She and her family moved to Manalapan, NJ. Domingo holds an Associate’s degree from Brookdale Community College. Following her degree, Domingo was sponsored by the Seaside Park Police Department to attend the Ocean County Police Academy. She has served in both the Seaside Park, NJ, and Englishtown, NJ Police Departments.
Patrol Officer Daniel D’Ascoli was born and raised in Hamilton Township, NJ where he currently resides. He graduated from Steinert High School and then attended the Cape May County Police Academy. He has worked for the Wildwood Police Department and the Allentown Borough Police department.
Bliss administered the oath of office to both new officers.
The Borough has received three applications for individuals who are interested in pursuing a retail cannabis license in Pennington. Mayor Davy recommended scheduling a special meeting to evaluate the applications. After conferring with Bliss, Davy recommended coming up with a set of questions for each applicant to answer so that each may be weighed based on that criteria.
The Council can choose only one applicant who will then proceed to approval at the state level. The State of NJ will ultimately decide if the application will be approved.
The Borough Council continued to discuss the road paving project on East Welling Avenue with residents. In addition to road paving, there is a discussion of extending the sidewalk the length of East Welling as well as the possibility of adding speed tables.
Residents expressed their concerns regarding the safety of East Welling. Since many people cut through that road, often speeding, there is a concern about the lack of sidewalks. Almost all residents present at the meeting were against adding speed tables although the safety issue was acknowledged.
Additionally, to make room for the sidewalk, several large Sycamore trees will need to be removed. While no one was a big supporter of taking down the very old, large trees, it is unavoidable.
The Council agreed that sidewalks would become a reality. The trees would be replaced with new trees at the end of the project. Since most residents were not in favor of speed tables, those were removed from the plans. The entire project cost is covered by grant funds.
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