January 2020 Mayor’s Annual Address
Together With 20/20 Vision
2020 is going to be an exciting year for our community! It is our Tricentennial, the 300th Anniversary of the arrival of our first settlers in New Providence. We have put together an incredible team of volunteers who along with our borough will be hosting a year-long celebration to mark and give thanks for our 300 Years of Pioneers! A number of very exciting events have been planned and we invite you to participate and help us make it the best year ever in New Providence. Event celebrations will include:
February 22 – Tricentennial Kickoff at the DeCorso Community Center, 15 E. 4th St, 7-9pm
Share light refreshments donated by some of New Providence’s best shops and restaurants. Learn about how New Providence grew and evolved into the great community it is today.
April 25 – Turkey Dinner at the New Providence Presbyterian Church
A catered turkey dinner to honor the original name of our town, “Turkey,” being held at the site, which gave New Providence its current name.
May 25 – New Providence Memorial Day Parade
The Tricentennial Committee will take part in our annual Memorial Day Parade honoring community members and others who have been serving our country from 1720 through 2020.
June 14 – New Providence Heritage Day
Celebrate the history of New Providence from Turkey to today with food, music, contests, games and more.
September 26 – New Providence Fun Day at New Providence High School
An old-fashioned, fun-filled, family-oriented community carnival on the grounds of New Providence High School from 11am to 3pm featuring inflatable rides, games, crafts, fun foods, recreational activities, music, entertainment, and more!
It is going to be a great year!
Great people make a great community, and New Providence is a shining example. Like our Puritan predecessors, public safety is still our number one priority here in New Providence. This year, our police department hired additional class two and class three officers to ensure our schools and courts were provided with added security. Our bolstered traffic bureau has been vigilant in helping to calm our congested downtown and addressing traffic control and speeding issues. Two new speed signs were installed on South Street and Union Avenue, and two more are slated for Mountain Avenue. New crosswalk lights have arrived and will be installed shortly. Additionally, new sidewalks will be installed throughout the year to increase walkability around town, and help insure pedestrian safety. Our long term paving projects are continuing with many more streets in our borough freshly paved and resurfaced this year with additional paving to be completed this spring. Special thanks to our Department of Public Works (DPW), our unsung heroes, for their continued good work for our borough.
Our volunteer fire and rescue squad members are truly to be commended and thanked for successfully responding to a record number of emergency calls this year. Our EMS was awarded the “Rescue Call of the Year” by the New Jersey State First Aid Council. We thank them for their selfless service to our community and for the countless hours of training and maintaining equipment to serve our residents.
Construction will begin shortly on Harmony Park thanks to the Union County Kids Recreation Trust Grant. Harmony Park will be a family-friendly, recreational space with large hands-on musical instruments, and will be located next to Veterans Park on South Street. This will be a fun new addition to our community.
Shared services with our neighboring communities have saved us tens of thousands of tax dollars. The newly shared municipal court with Berkeley Heights and Summit has worked out even better than anticipated. All three of our participating communities have greatly benefitted from this new venture, and are to be commended.
Our business community is an essential part of our New Providence way of life. Almost all of our events and promotions in our community are made possible through generous business contributions. A thriving business community translates into a thriving local economy, so please remember to support our local businesses by shopping New Providence. We thank our local businesses for their continued generous support of our community, and look forward to an exciting upcoming year celebrating our Tricentennial.
Special thanks to our dedicated borough employees who take care of our day-to-day operations. They are the life blood of our community, hard-working, knowledgeable, competent, and always working together for the sole purpose of serving our residents.
Congratulations to our Sustainability Committee for once again receiving Bronze Sustainability certification. Our Sustainability Committee provides leadership and vision on actions and policies including preservation and enhancement of New Providence’s environment, natural resources, and the quality of life for our residents and businesses.
New Providence’s numerous boards and committees deal with so many different facets of local government. These volunteers spend long hours performing their respective duties and are the backbone of our community. We are extremely fortunate for their service and we thank them. We also thank our school district not only for molding and educating our students, but also for instilling the importance of community service, which is invaluable in a small community like ours. Our Board of Education and Administration need to be commended for working closely with our police department to ensure a higher level of security in our schools. The police presence in our schools continues to be a great success.
Our dedicated and diligent Borough Council has worked very hard to support all the projects, initiatives, and activities in our community. Our Borough Council always takes a long term, common sense, approach with due diligence to every task and situation that arises, without acting impulsively. This speaks volumes to our stability, wise decisions, and our ability to accomplish so much in our community.
Great communities are built and maintained on hometown pride and spirit that foster volunteerism and generate community contributions. When people feel connected to something good that they believe in, they engage in it, invest in it, thrive in it, nurture it, contribute to it, protect it, and encourage its growth. That is what we have built here together in New Providence. With your support, and our clear 2020 vision, we can continue together to build a vibrant, safe, welcoming, and affordable community in our Pioneer Spirit!
Thank you for allowing me this great honor of serving you as Mayor of our great community. We look forward to our exciting year ahead celebrating our Pioneer Heritage during our Tricentennial. May God continue to bless New Providence and all of you.
Happy Anniversary New Providence!
– Mayor Al Morgan