Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXI, No. 19
 
Wednesday, May 9, 2007
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Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic Thanks Its Record-A-Thon Sponsors

STEPHANIE CAMPBELL
Executive Director
Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic, New Jersey Unit

Arts Council of Princeton Thanks All Who Participated in Communiversity

MICHAEL LaRICCIA
Program Coordinator
Arts Council of Princeton

"Another Perspective" Is Called for In Borough Government Leadership

JOHN J. TURI
Westcott Road

Canal Pointe Boulevard Modifications Urged by Bicycle-Pedestrian Alliance

KEN CARLSON
President,
West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance

Clarification Offered for Argument Supporting Details of School Budget

JOHN L. POWELL
Snowden Lane


Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic Thanks Its Record-A-Thon Sponsors

To the Editor:

In April the New Jersey Unit of Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic held its 13th annual Record-A-Thon at our studios on the campus of St. Joseph's Seminary. The community rallied to support the efforts of our volunteers to record educational material for our members who cannot effectively read standard print because of a visual impairment or print disability such as dyslexia.

In spite of the nor'easter which flooded part of our facility and forced us to postpone the launch of the event, our volunteers donated 1,032 hours which created 430 hours of recording for our members during the week of April 17-23, and along with our event sponsors helped raise funds critically needed to continue our mission.

In addition to thanking our wonderful and dedicated team of volunteers and their friends, families and co-workers who sponsored their efforts, we thank our event sponsors ETS, Glenmede, Bloomberg, and CB VATAmerica for their generous support of our mission. In addition, we thank McCaffrey's, Sodexho, Wegmans, Whole Foods, Nassau Inn, Obal Gardens, and ShopRite for their kind donations of food and other gifts to sustain and support our hard working volunteers and staff.

The New Jersey Unit will soon be celebrating its 50th anniversary. Without the continued support of the Princeton area community we would never have been able to help the generations of students and professionals we have helped succeed in school — and in life.

STEPHANIE CAMPBELL
Executive Director
Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic, New Jersey Unit

Arts Council of Princeton Thanks All Who Participated in Communiversity

To the Editor:

On behalf of the Arts Council of Princeton, I want to thank everyone, including our more than 30,000 visitors, who helped to make Communiversity 2007 such a spectacular event on a beautiful day. We had the best Communiversity to date, breaking last year's record.

When the Arts Council and the Princeton University undergraduates plan Communiversity each year, we envision a town meets gown event with something for everyone: diverse music and dance, engaging children's activities, and outstanding artistry, food, and nonprofit organizations. I would like to thank all of the Arts council staff and volunteers who gave their time and energy to make the Arts Council's activity area a success.

This day could not have happened without the following groups and individuals: all of the artists, crafters, local merchants, nonprofits, volunteers, performers; our staff and board; University students; our event planner, Grayson Bridge Communications & Events; and all of our corporate sponsors.

MICHAEL LaRICCIA
Program Coordinator
Arts Council of Princeton

"Another Perspective" Is Called for In Borough Government Leadership

To the Editor:

I read with dismay that Mildred Trotman, after 20 years in office, has announced that she intends to run again for municipal office.

She claims that she is not a politician and wants to "do great for the community." If she is truly interested in the welfare of the Borough, after two decades in office, it is time Mrs. Trotman stepped aside and allowed someone with a different perspective to address the problems she has been wrestling with for so many years.

A resolution of the crushing tax burden is no nearer a solution. It is ironic and heartbreaking that our senior citizens, many of whom have contributed a lifetime to improve the quality of life in the Borough, cannot enjoy the fruits of their labor. The confiscatory taxes have resulted in a mass exodus of some of our most valued and deserving older neighbors.

Might I suggest to the Mayor and long-term Councilmen that rather than make a lifetime career out of municipal office, they should follow the example of Washington and Jefferson and limit their participation in political office to a maximum of two terms.

In lieu of political office, rather than lose their zeal for aiding the community, our elected officials could utilize the retired officials' talent as leaders of Citizens Committees focusing on specific local problems that fall under their expertise or interests. Their conclusions would be submitted to the Mayor and Council and considered on their merits.

This letter is not intended as a criticism of Mildred Trotman. She has contributed time and effort over and beyond the vast majority of the residents of our community but surely, after 20 years Princeton Borough urgently needs new ideas, new enthusiasm, and another perspective to the problems plaguing our community.

JOHN J. TURI
Westcott Road

Canal Pointe Boulevard Modifications Urged by Bicycle-Pedestrian Alliance

To the Editor:

On April 17, 21 West Windsor residents took part in an educational walk of Canal Pointe Boulevard in the vicinity of Princeton Market Fair. The walk was organized by the West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance to examine conditions for pedestrians and bicyclists along this busy roadway.

The group agreed that Canal Pointe Boulevard has serious flaws regarding safety and mobility for pedestrians and cyclists and is in need of immediate short-term amelioration as well as long-term reconstruction. Conditions for pedestrians crossing Canal Pointe Boulevard are dangerous and in fact represent a real lost opportunity, since the neighborhoods along Canal Pointe Boulevard contain a high density of residents living near significant retail and business centers, yet there is a clear lack of safe pedestrian crossings and bicycle facilities. The one existing crosswalk on Canal Pointe Boulevard between Farber Road and Alexander Road is inadequate and dangerous. There are no crosswalks at two busy intersections at Meadow Road and Carillon Boulevard.

The group fully endorses the recommendations from the Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan developed for West Windsor by the Transportation Planners Orth-Rodgers and the Mayor's Bicycle and Pedestrian Task Force, for placing Canal Pointe Boulevard on a "road diet." Such a road diet would reduce the automobile travel lanes from two in each direction to one in each direction with a middle turning lane, would include a grass median, and would include high visibility pedestrian crossings and bicycle lanes, all of which would result in reduced automobile travel speeds, safer pedestrian crossings, and safe bicycle facilities. The group also recommends the immediate improvement of the Mayfair Drive crosswalk and the installation of new crosswalks at Meadow Road, Heritage Drive, and Carillon Boulevard. To see our complete recommendations, visit our web site, www.princetonol.com/groups/wwbpa.

We urge the Township administration and the Township Council to take the appropriate actions to make Canal Pointe Boulevard a bicycle and pedestrian safe roadway. We owe it to the thousands of residents who reside in the communities along Canal Pointe Boulevard. This is especially true in light of the current discussion of "smart growth" development in the redevelopment area. We have attractive high density housing along Canal Pointe Boulevard; now let's be smart and provide pedestrian and bicycle connectivity between this housing and nearby retail and business centers.

KEN CARLSON
President,
West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance

Clarification Offered for Argument Supporting Details of School Budget

To the Editor:

In a recent letter supporting the Princeton school budget I stated that the "pool already pays for itself."

I was all wet. Non-school users pay a fee that covers the "incremental" costs of their use, and, if the users are not from Princeton, their fees also contribute to paying the capital cost of the pool. For 2005-06 pool fees brought in $57,000.

The letter misstated the increase in the budget adopted for 2007-08. It is 2.29 percent, further below the inflation rate, not 2.9 percent.

And, a clarification: Princeton's school tax rates, with Trenton, are at the bottom of the list in Mercer County based on true value, not assessed value. Reassessment therefore will lower our school tax rates dramatically but not change our position on the list. The list, provided by the Mercer County Board of Taxation for 2005 (the last available), ranges from 3.16 for Hightstown to 1.69 and 1.54 for the Princetons and 1.10 for Trenton. Pennington Borough is the median at 2.33.

JOHN L. POWELL
Snowden Lane

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