From Plainfield City Hall
  Mayor Adrian O. Mapp
One Plainfield.  One Future.
  
In celebration of Black History Month, I take this opportunity to offer my wholehearted support of U. S. Congressional Bill H.R.431, which will award a Congressional Gold Medal to the Foot Soldiers who participated in Bloody Sunday, Turnaround Tuesday, or the final Selma to Montgomery Voting Rights March in March of 1965. These events served as a catalyst for the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Bill H.R.431 was introduced by Representative Sewell (D) of Alabama, on 1/21/2015. It passed the House on 2/12/2015 and was received in the Senate on 2/12/2015 where it awaits further action. If passed by the Senate, the Bill will be sent to President Obama for signing. 

As we celebrate the last two weeks of Black History Month, please join me as I reflect on Sankofa - the word in the Akan language of Ghana that translates in English to "reach back and get it." Sankofa also means taking from the past what is good and bringing it into the present in order to make positive progress through the benevolent use of knowledge. 

 This week's updates  pertain to the following:
  • Affordable Care Act (ACA) Deadline
  • Transportation Trust Fund
  • Education Mayor's Playbook
  • New Driver's License Ordinance
  • Anti-tethering Ordinance
  • Public Affairs and Safety Update
  • Arts and Culture
  • Resources

Creating One Plainfield - One Future,

Mayor Adrian O. Mapp
City of Plainfield
Affordable Care Act (ACA) Open Enrollment Registration Drive Event 
My administration held the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Registration Drive Event on February 12, 2015.  A steady stream of Plainfield residents attended the registration drive to sign up for healthcare before the open enrollment deadline this Sunday, February 15, 2015. Residents were pleased to have access to a Plainfield ACA Navigator who answered all questions, and assisted in the registration process right here in City Hall.  My administration will offer residents future resources to assist with ACA registration and updates  for the next open enrollment period. Stay tuned!

 
Transportation Trust Fund Press Conference  




On February 9, 2014, I sent John Stewart, my Chief of Staff,  to Trenton in support of the
Transportation Trust Fund.  The packed committee room in the State House Annex was the setting of the press conference called by Forward NJ, a gold-star coalition formed last year to advocate for the state's failing transportation system.  The coalition blasted the Christie administration and the state legislature for its lack of progress in replenishing the depleted transportation trust fund.

New Jersey's transportation infrastructure has been the center of debate in Trenton in recent months. The administration and the legislature argue back and forth on how to replenish the Transportation Trust Fund which could very well become insolvent by June of this year. This would leave the state no options in funding transportation infrastructure improvements and other crucial statewide projects. Among the many negative ramifications of an insolvent Transportation Trust Fund is the continuing  decaying of our roads and bridges and a loss of Plainfield based infrastructure jobs.

A few of the suggestions lawmakers are discussing include reallocating monies in the state's budget from other areas to pay for the fund.  Others argue this should come from a new tax on consumers and businesses who use our roads.        
 
The Education Mayor's Online Playbook
As Mayor, securing a good education for all of Plainfield's children is at the top of my list of priorities. I join other Education Mayors throughout the country by partnering with the local Board of Education and Superintendent to ensure our children perform up to their potential, and to make education a focus.  

This week, I am highlighting Increase Access to High Quality ECE (Early Chidhood Education), the first of the four areas of the Educational Excellence Task Force's report. I encourage you to read the reports provided by the Mayors of Columbus, OH and West Sacramento, CA.

Driver's License Ordinance
Supporting Driving Privilege Cards for Undocumented State Residents
On Monday, February 9, 2015, the Plainfield Council Meeting had standing room only as the Latino community came out to support driving privilege cards for undocumented state residents.  The council resolution, which passed unanimously, is in support of Senate Bill S1696 and Assembly Bill A2135 proposing the issuance of driving privilege cards.  This is a great opportunity and will afford residents with the means to commute to work, seek employment, and perform everyday tasks such as bringing kids to school.  I am in full support of undocumented state residents having access to driving privilege cards.
Anti-Tethering Amendment
Anti-Tethering Amendment
 At Monday's Council meeting, many supporters of this amendment filled the Municipal Courthouse.  Many animal activists came to the council meeting in support of legislation eliminating extensive tethering and leaving our canine friends exposed to harsh weather without appropriate shelter. The amendment passed unanimously on first reading. It will be up for final passage on March 9, 2015.

New Rules:
  • Limiting the time of tethering
  • Cannot leave an unattended animal outdoors for more than 30 min. when:
    • Temperatures are below 32 degrees or over 85 degrees
    • Storms are in the forecast
  • Adequate water, food, and a dry shaded area for animal
  • Violations may result in seizure of animal and placed into adoption
  • Owners may be fined between $100 to $1,000 for violations

Public Affairs and Safety Update
City Wide Cameras Approved 
Public Safety is the cornerstone and priority of my administration.  We will be moving forward with the installation of 30 high-definition cameras at various locations throughout the City. The final resolution was passed at Monday's Council meeting. The cameras will be placed in various locations within the west end, east end and downtown business districts based upon historical data of certain incidents. These cameras will give the operators the ability to have a 360 degree panoramic view, up to several hundred feet within the designated areas.  
  
Having the potential to monitor real time activity  seen on cameras in police headquarters is priceless. The police can quickly identify and respond to such activity instead of waiting for a call.  They will also help police determine the safest, most effective response, including how many officers to deploy and how to respond to a specific incident.  This digital documentation will definitely aid in investigations and prosecutions that will enhance police and prosecutorial efficiency.  The project is anticipated to be completed in the spring.

Safety Seat Inspections 
Union County Child Safety Seat Inspection Program.  Did you know that 8 out of 10 child safety seats are installed incorrectly?  Every Wednesday and Thursday the County will be conducting FREE child safety seat inspections from 7:30am to 11:00am at the Garwood First Aid Squad,  401 Second Ave., Garwood.  No appointment is necessary.   
  
For more information, visit www.ucnj.org/child-safety-seats, e-mail cmarcantonio@ucnj.org, or call 908-789-6830.  
Arts and Culture
Winter Concert / Plainfield Music Club
Free Winter Concert presented by the Plainfield Music Club, featuring Sophia Agranovich, Fred Fischer, Victoria Griswold. and Robert Romano. Concert selections include a celebration of Valentine's Day music.
Date: Saturday, February 14, 2015
Time: 2:00pm - 4:30pm
Location: Plainfield Public Library

duCret School of Art - 36th Annual High School Art Show
Come and view a great art exhibit from New Jersey high school students in their junior and senior years.  Art categories include:  Oil, Acrylic, Watercolor, Pastel, Pencil, Pen & Ink, Printmaking, Serigraph, Mixed Media, Traditional & Digital photography and Graphic Art. [No hand crafts, sculpture or pottery] Prizes will be awarded at the reception.

Date: Friday, February 27th 
Time: 7pm - 9 pm 
Location: duCret School of Art (auditorium) 
1030 Central Ave Plainfield, NJ 07060  
(908) 757-7171

Plainfield Symphony Orchestra  
 

The Plainfield Symphony's 95th Season Annual Free Afternoon Family Concert, "The Orchestra Grows Up",  will be presented at 3:00 p.m. Saturday, February 21, 2015, under the baton of guest conductor Michael Avagliano. The program is a musical tour through the history of the symphony, featuring selections from the Baroque, Classical and Romantic to the Modern era.  


 

Click here for more information 

Resources
AARP Tax Preparation
The AARP will be providing Tax Preparation Assistance to the public at the Plainfield Public Library
BY APPOINTMENT ONLY.
Appointments can be made by calling the Senior Center at 908-753-3506.
Date: Saturday, February 14, 2015
Time: 9:15am - 12:30pm
Location: Plainfield Public Library
For more information call: 908-753-3506 


IRS Can Help if W-2s Are Missing
In most cases you get your W-2 forms by the end of January. Form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement, shows your income and the taxes withheld from your pay for the year. You need your W-2 form to file an accurate tax return. If you haven't received your form by mid-February, here's what you should do:
 

IRS: Freefile

If your annual salary is $60,000 or less you may qualify to use Freefile to file your income taxes.  Watch information video below for further details. 

Welcome to Free File
Welcome to Free File


Help Us Spread the Word
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Until Next Time

Stay warm and have a great weekend!