Hoops kid

By JOE AMDITIS

Local Beat is NJ News Commons’ weekly roundup of the best and most topical reporting from local news sites around New Jersey.

There’s nothing more local than those basketball hoops people put on the grass strip between the sidewalk and the street. Carolyn Maynard-Parisi of the Village Green reports on the ruckus that broke out when Maplewood residents were told to remove the hoops or get slapped with $1,000 fines. The crisis was averted last night when residents – many of them kids – showed up in force at the Township Committee meeting and the town leaders reversed the policy.

Development projects were big in the news this week. In Morristown, Kevin Coughlin of Morristown Green reports on a proposal to turn the city’s last tract of undeveloped land into a day care center. The project would require the removal of about 200 trees from the one-acre plot.

In New Brunswick, concerned residents, union members, and Rutgers students poured into City Hall to continue the ongoing debate over a proposed apartment complex. According to Corey Kuebler of Muckgers, the Planning Board meeting was so packed that they had to prematurely adjourn and reschedule the meeting in a bigger space.

Virginia Citrano of My Verona NJ reports that the Verona Planning Board rejected plans for a mixed-use building on Bloomfield Avenue for a second time. Meanwhile, the Westfield town council recently approved some teardowns, as Jill D’Ambrosio of TAP into Westfield explains.

Jerry DeMarco of the Cliffview Pilot prides himself on being first to report breaking crime stories, but this week he took the birds’ eye view and also published an article on a recent drop in violent and other crimes in Bergen County using data from the latest Uniform Crime Report.

While most Labor Day coverage tends to focus more on the extended weekend than it does on the decades-long working class struggle that won us that weekend in the first place, Matt Skoufalos of NJ Pen wasn’t having it. Instead, Skoufalos brings us an in-depth look at the current economic situation as it relates to students, laborers, and professionals and breaks down some of the most effective means for combatting inequality.

Finally, happy 7th birthday to Jersey Bites, which is celebrating with a daylong birthday party on Facebook. Read about it here.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for our upcoming archives training on September 18th. The session will focus on how you can use and re-use your archived content for fun and profit. Click here to register. It’s free!

Our full roundup:

South Plainfield Mourns the Loss of Sarmad Rizvi TAP into South Plainfield
Katherine Howes Sworn in a First Woman Municipal Court Judge TAP into South Plainfield
Construction Boom Hits Westfield Housing Market TAP into Westfield
Firefighters Extinguish Huge Blaze in Westfield Labor Day TAP into Westfield
Dignitaries Attend South Plainfield 57th Annual Labor Day Parade TAP into South Plainfield
Bloomfield Avenue Developer Loses Again My Verona NJ
Hooping it up at Uke NJ fest in Morris Township Morristown Green
One hundred-and-one uses for a ukulele. Morristown Green
Crime in your town: Drops in Englewood, Ridgewood, elsewhere Cliffview Pilot
Some Businesses Affected by Fire at Westfield Strip Mall Could Re-Open in 2 Weeks, Fire Chief Says TAP into Westfield
Labor Day in NJ: Organization, Education Keys to New Economy NJ Pen
A Contentious Nip/Tuck for Mine Street Muckgers
Kids or Trees? Morristown environmentalists oppose a proposed daycare center that would clear trees from one of the town’s last undeveloped tracts. Morristown Green
See how they run: Morristown newlyweds skip the honeymoon and dash straight to the finish line, winning a Labor Day race. Morristown Green
Maplewood Keeps Hoop Dreams Alive for Local Kids Village Green NJ
Springdale Pro Plays 150 Holes of Golf in One Day for Local Charity Mercer Me
How to Throw a Birthday Party NJ News Commons