ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Details are sketchy but around 9:23 p.m. last night March 15, 2023, the Robbinsville Township Fire Department and EMS along with Police responded to 93 North Main Street in the Windsor section of the Township for a reported Carbon Monoxide Emergency. Upon arrival firefighters reported a carbon monoxide leak from a broken vent. It was reported that one person was transported to the hospital for evaluation but no word of condition. The Township Fire Official and Township Building Official were called to the scene to investigate.
This morning there were large red/orange signs posted at all the entrances that were visible from the street and once zoomed in it appeared that they read Unsafe Structure Notice with the date of 3/15/2023. There appeared to be yellow tape around the back of one of the buildings on the property. It was also reported a large amount of people were staying at the property and needed to find other places to stay once the building was closed.
Township Officials would not comment and referred all comments to the Robbinsville Township Police Department who would also not comment on the call last night.
If further details become available, the story will be updated.
Buildings at 93 North Main Street in the Windsor section of Robbinsville were posted with Unsafe Structure Notice. Yellow tape could be seen around the back of the building. All photos taken from across the street.
Students in the Red Cross Club Organize the Community Event
March 15, 2023
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Robbinsville High School’s Red Cross Club collected 51 units of donated blood from community members in February, one of the largest totals in recent years.
“This is the biggest number I’ve seen since becoming the club’s adviser,” said teacher Sue Kanagawa, who began advising the club in 2017. “It’s amazing to see such community support for this important project.”
To put this year’s number in perspective, the club collected 47 units of blood in 2022, 25 units of blood in 2020, and 23 units of blood in 2019. A blood drive was not held in 2021 because of COVID-19.
Each unit of blood can be used by up to three patients, meaning this year’s donations could help as many as 153 individuals, according to the American Red Cross New Jersey Region.
Robbinsville’s Red Cross Club is one of the largest student organizations at the high school with about 90 members. They worked to plan, promote and manage a recent blood drive, while technicians from the American Red Cross set up stations and administered the blood donations. Students also served snacks to donors, including bagels donated by Bagels n’ Cream on Washington Boulevard.
For Sahana Prasad, a Robbinsville junior, volunteering for the club teaches her about the crucial role that blood drives play in keeping a stable supply.
“There’s really no substitute for blood and everyone has to do their part in helping others around the world,” said Prasad, the club’s secretary.
Someone in the United States requires additional blood or platelets every two seconds, which translates to a daily demand of 29,000 units of red blood cells, nearly 5,000 units of platelets and 6,500 units of plasma, according to the American Red Cross.
That urgency is what drove Suhani Agarwal to volunteer for the club, as well. The Robbinsville junior greeted donors at the door and helped ensure they had required documentation, among other duties.
Agarwal, Red Cross Club’s vice president, said serving others is a value that has long been instilled in her at home. Indeed, her mom was among those who donated blood.
“It makes me feel really nice to give back to my community,” Agarwal said. “It was great to have someone in my family donate. It was also nice to see how many people in our community who want to help.”
American Red Cross New Jersey Region CEO Rosie Taravella thanked students, staff and the Robbinsville community for their blood donations, noting the vast disparity between how many people need blood and the number of people who donate.
Robbinsville’s donations, Taravella said, will help bridge that gap.
“The need for blood is constant, and the students and staff at Robbinsville High School can be counted on to roll up a sleeve to help meet the need,” Taravella said. “One in seven patients entering a hospital will need a blood transfusion, but at the same time, only about three percent of Americans give blood. The American Red Cross is proud of the work the Robbinsville Red Cross Club puts into organizing blood drives and grateful for the humanitarian spirit exhibited at the school.”
Red Cross Club members promoted the blood drive with posters, social media and good old-fashioned word of mouth, especially in conversations between students and their parents, according to Shrika Yeddula, the club’s co-president.
“It’s a club that really opens up high schoolers to the world of volunteering; it is important to get involved in something that has greater purpose and could help other people,” said Yeddula, a senior who has been in the club for three years.
In addition to the blood drive, Red Cross Club collects food for military families, sends holiday cards to military personnel and hosts bake sales each year in support of the American Red Cross. The club also has raised money to fight wildfires and educate children about COVID-19 hygiene.
Abinaya Dharanikumar, the club’s treasurer, said she especially enjoys writing holiday cards to members of the armed forces. The club typically sends between 200 and 300 cards each year with messages that express gratitude to the recipients for their service.
“Everyone loves doing these cards,” said Dharanikumar, a senior who has been in the club since her freshman year. “For me personally I like making the cards because it is a way to show how much we appreciate them. Everyone feels the same way.”
How to Donate Blood
Download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Red Cross Club members.
Red Cross Club executive members.
Visitors prepare to donate blood after student volunteers checked their IDs
Red Cross Club student volunteers at the blood drive.
Red Cross Club student volunteers at the blood drive.
Annual Night of Nations Fundraiser Scheduled for March 27
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–
Autonomous weapons raise complicated questions that challenge even the most seasoned diplomats, legal scholars and war ethicists, but Allison Dera wasn’t fazed.
“It’s really balancing state sovereignty, countries’ security interests and humanitarian causes,” said Dera, explaining the geo-political nuances of the topic in a recent interview. “It’s a very difficult balancing act because you have to keep so many factors in mind.”
The Robbinsville High School senior confronted the issue as part of her work in Model UN, an international education program in which students simulate the United Nations General Assembly and debate world affairs.
Dera, vice president of Robbinsville High School’s Model UN club, was in Washington, D.C. in February for the North American Invitational Model United Nations, where she worked to get a resolution passed that outlined how countries can mitigate fully autonomous weapons systems. Her measure sought to codify into international humanitarian law limits on the capabilities of such weapons and when they can be used.
It’s just one example of the complex and urgent problems that Robbinsville students are addressing in Model UN — and their success with it.
Last month, the club brought home 10 awards from BosMUN XXII, Boston University’s Model United Nations Conference. Students won best position paper and outstanding delegate, in addition to verbal recognitions and honorable mentions. The awards highlighted students’ writing and arguments, communication, diplomacy and collaboration with others.
Before the Boston conference, students submitted papers identifying their chosen country’s positions on issues. Topics included global human trafficking, sustainability and the future of Congress. Students then debated the issues and voted on resolutions — policy documents detailing how countries can work together to solve the problem at hand.
The conference, held February 10-12, drew about 1,500 students from schools all over the nation and was the biggest competition the club has participated in since the COVID-19 pandemic began. For the past two years, Robbinsville’s Model UN club participated only in mock events within the school and in virtual competitions.
“It was a pretty big deal for us to do so well because we really hadn’t competed since COVID,” club adviser Mark Iannelli said.
Robbinsville’s team also earned six awards, including two first-place finishes, at the Rutgers Model United Nations conference in November. That competition drew about 800 students, mostly from New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.
To qualify for travel competitions, Robbinsville Model UN members must do well in mock events at the high school. These events entail writing position papers and debating with peers on various committees.
The experience has been life changing for Hammad Farooqi, the club’s president, who said Model UN has helped him grow as a student, leader and person.
“Model UN is a great club to build your public speaking skills and team-building skills by taking on the roles of different countries tackling important issues,” Farooqi said. “As a freshman I don’t think I was very confident, but through this role I was able to take on a new persona.”
The Robbinsville senior said although the work is demanding, he has enjoyed meeting people and forging new friendships. He plans to attend Princeton University in the fall to study computer science.
“The dream would be to have my own start-up and develop my own software, to be able to apply my love for computer science to the type of leadership roles in a team like we have at Model UN,” Farooqi said.
As for Dera, she is scheduled to travel to Madrid, Spain, later this month to compete in the Harvard Model Congress Europe competition with the All-American Model UN team. After graduation this year, the 18-year-old plans to attend McGill University in Montreal and wants to work in international development.
“I would like to work in economically developing regions of the world, addressing economic systems, public infrastructure systems, maybe even for the World Bank or a non-profit organization,” Dera said.
Robbinsville High School Model UN will host its annual fundraiser, Night of Nations, on Monday, March 27, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Club members will give presentations about different countries and prepare authentic cuisine.
Robbinsville High School Model UN club members at BosMUN XXII, Boston University’s Model United Nations Conference, in February.
Robbinsville High School Model UN club members who won awards at BosMUN XXII, Boston University’s Model United Nations Conference.
Robbinsville High School Model UN club members at the Rutgers Model United Nations conference in November.
Robbinsville High School Model UN club’s executive team.
Robbinsville High School Model UN club’s fall mock event.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Mandatory financial audits and a comprehensive review by the state Department of Education show the Robbinsville Public Schools are financially strong and operating a peak performance.
This is the third annual audit under Schools Superintendent Brian Betze and Business Administrator Nick Mackres, each year showing tight accounting practices and clean financial records. The independent audit was completed by Holt McNally & Associates of Medford, a certified public accounting firm, which presented its findings at the February school board meeting for public discussion.
“All school districts in New Jersey are required to undergo a detailed audit each year to ensure funds are accepted and disbursed properly,” Betze said. “Over the summer, auditors spent three weeks studying the school district’s accounting mechanisms. The final report was just released, showing for the third year in a row a clean audit, with absolutely no issues or concerns.”
As part of the detailed review of the 2021-22 budget, auditors matched up random samplings of purchase orders to ensure expenditures are in the correct budget lines. They also examine the funding stream for students’ sports and clubs, as well as ensure incoming funds are being properly transferred to the right places within the budget. There is also a compliance check to ensure the school district’s accounting practices meet all state guidelines.
Betze attributed the positive audit report to Mackres and his team in the school district’s business office, who handle all financial matters for the three district schools.
“The taxpayers of Robbinsville entrust the school district with managing an annual budget of $61.3 million, of which $45 million is generated by local property taxpayers,” said School Board President Richard Young. “It is critical that every dollar is wisely spent, in accordance with state guidelines, to ensure we are providing a thorough and efficient education to each and every student. That is why this audit result is so important. It shows our school administrators are right on task as financial stewards.”
School officials also received good news from the state Department of Education, which conducts the Quality Single Accountability Continuum (QSAC) assessment every three years. The state reviews five different areas of the school district, including 55 curriculum documents and 189 indicators.
Under the leadership of the district’s new directors of curriculum/instruction, as well as their supervisors, the Robbinsville Public Schools are now 100% compliant in curriculum. It is expected the school district will be compliant in all areas when the state issues a final report in the beginning of April.
“The state wants to ensure full compliance within all of our operations,” the superintendent explained. “Auditors examine finances, operations, governance, procedures, curriculum, instruction and facilities. It is a very deep dive, to the point in which state inspectors ensure fire extinguishers are up to code. They even check to see if closet doors close properly and flush all the toilets.”
The state also looks at long-term planning as part of a comprehensive assessment. Betze is coordinating a strategic planning process through the winter and spring, which includes a community survey that residents are asked to submit by Monday, March 13. The survey, which should take about 15 minutes to complete, is available at the school district website, http://www.Robbinsville.k12.nj.us
There are nearly 110 residents and other stakeholders who have volunteered for the strategic planning process this winter, in which monthly meetings are held to set a long-term direction for improving student achievement. Community recommendations will be incorporated in a draft Robbinsville Public Schools 2023-2028 Strategic Plan, which the school board is expected to adopt at its June meeting.
“We have received tremendous input from all sectors of our community as we plan for the long-range success of our public schools,” Young said. “It is important that as many stakeholders as possible participate in the community survey, thus ensuring the final, approved plan truly reflects direction dictated by the people of Robbinsville.”
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Dr. Leonidas Harris Berry was a Black physician who pioneered gastroenterology, the branch of medicine concerned with the digestive system, whose tireless work has inspired generations of African American students.
Christian Wright, a Robbinsville High School senior, is one example.
Wright spoke about Berry during a research presentation at the school’s Black History Month Festival, noting Berry’s significant contributions to public health and civil rights in the 20th century.
The 18-year-old was among numerous students who showcased their research on Black historical figures in the fields of education, politics, art, music, business and medicine.
Wright said the school’s festival, held Feb. 2, shined light on Black culture for the broader Robbinsville community.
“Black culture is excellence. Black culture is intelligence. Black culture is power,” Wright said. “There’s so many definitions to Black culture. It’s hard to define it as just one thing. I think that’s really the beauty of Black culture.”
Held every February, Black History Month is an annual opportunity to reflect on the history of the African American experience and to celebrate the achievements and promise of Black people throughout the country.
Members of the school’s Black Culture Club organized the festival. The club is an open space for Black and non-Black students to learn about Black culture and its history.
In addition to the research presentations, local and regional Black-owned businesses sold arts and crafts and served soul food like collard greens, candied yams, chicken and macaroni and cheese. There was also a DJ and the school’s jazz band performed.
Club members helped decorate the festival space and served as greeters, while Wright sold products from his own clothing brand, “Stay True.”
The club provides educational opportunities for all students to explore Black culture and its history throughout the year. Last year, club members traveled to Montclair State University to see an art exhibit and visited the African American Museum in Philadelphia. The club plans to visit the Apollo Theater in New York City later this year.
The club’s 75 members also held a day of service for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day by inviting kids served through the HomeFront social services agency to the school, where group members and their guests ate pizza and played games.
This was the festival’s first year and organizers say they intend to make it an annual event.
“Black History Month is important because it highlights the significance of Black culture, contributions by Black people, inventors and creators,” Black Culture Club co-advisor Donald Estrada said. “It’s a very important part of the year for us.”
Students who attended the festival said they appreciated how it fostered a sense of togetherness. Senior Sahil Patil, who is of Indian ethnicity, said he was drawn to the gathering to learn about another culture and to spend time with friends.
“It’s a really good learning experience to diversify myself,” Patil said. “Going to these events, you can understand your friends more and connect with them at a deeper level.”
To be sure, the festival has pedagogical utility: Teacher Cameron Williams, who co-advises the club, said the process of organizing the event shows students the value of planning, following that plan and seeing it come to fruition.
But more importantly, Williams said, the festival was simply a way to celebrate community.
“It was an event of love, showing how we love each other,” Williams said.
Presenters Christian Wright, Jordan Baker, Gabe Gomez, Nana Appiah and Yaw Appiah.
Black Culture Club Co-Advisor Donald Estrada, vendor Treats by Tahj, Nana Appiah and Black Culture Club President Lebron Rose.
EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–Around 3:05 a.m. Hightstown, Cranbury and Robbinsville Fire Departments were dispatched to the New Jersey Turnpike on the Exit 8 Ramp for a truck fire. Upon arrival it was found that the tractor had disconnected from the trailer and that the rear of the flatbed trailer hauling steel rebar was well involved in fire. Firefighters stretched hose lines and extinguished the fire. There was a partial blockage of the shoulder for cleanup. No additional details are available.
WEST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–Last night, February 14, 2023, the Robbinsville-Allentown Ravens put on quite the show when they played none other than… the Robbinsville-Allentown Ravens! At an intra-squad game to remember, the Cancer Crushers took on the Red Blood Cells in the fight against sarcoma in honor of Nathan Ugi, a 12-year old 7th grader from Stonebridge Middle School in Allentown.
Nate was on-hand to drop the ceremonial puck under an honor guard of sticks and was presented a magic jersey signed by all the players and coaches. “We know that sometimes going through health issues can be a tough go, so we want you to know when things get a little bit tough and you feel a little down, you put on this magic jersey and it makes things a little bit better for you”, Coach Dan Bergan shared.
Team Nate bracelets and keychains were sold at the event and over $1,200 has been raised to offset Nate’s medical expenses and “more has been coming in all day. The love our community and hockey family has shared for Nate is so spectacular”, Amy Weltner shared.
After a grueling hour-long scrimmage, with a few antics thrown in for good measure and some light-hearted laughs – the Cancer Crushers took the game in an 11-7 win over the Red Blood Cells.
As the night wrapped up with a fist bump line with Nate as the players carrying yellow taped sticks with helmet stickers that proclaimed, “We Skate for Nate” exited the ice, Nate’s smile was ear-to-ear and that was the best part of it all. Bergan expressed that “Nate inspired us all to remember what is most important in life. The good in the world lies quiet at times but know that it is there and will rise to the occasion. This is such an occasion.”
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Robbinsville Fire Department responded to the New Jersey Turnpike mile post 63.6 north bound inner roadway for a vehicle fire at 8:24 a.m. Upon arrival firefighters found a well involved car fire and quickly knocked down the flames. Firefighters remained on scene for a short time for overhaul. No other details were available.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–The “State of the Schools” is strong, reports Robbinsville Schools Superintendent Brian Betze during a recent report to the community about the school district’s priorities and focus for the future.
Betze detailed the ongoing growth of the suburban school district, which had only served students in grades K-8 prior to 2004. The district’s population now includes pre-kindergarten students through 12th grade, as the three Robbinsville schools continue to grow and evolve, reflecting the changing demographics of the township.
Over the past 12 years, total enrollment has increased by 310 students to 3,092 for the 2022-23 school year. The largest class size is the Class of ’23, with 273 students. The lowest class is kindergarten, with 144 students.
The Robbinsville schools now have 430 employees, of whom 296 are certified staff, 41 are instructional assistants and the remainder comprise the administration, assistants and other individuals who make the district run efficiently, such as bus drivers and maintenance staff.
Betze said school officials are most pleased with student performance, as the Robbinsville schools rank among the top 20% in the state in terms of standardized testing. The high school has a 97.5% graduation rate, with 96% of students enrolling in college, while others are attending technical school or entering the workforce.
“The focus of the Robbinsville schools is all about college and career readiness,” Betze said, noting the high school features 17 advanced placement courses, robotics and technology offerings and a dual enrollment program with Mercer County Community College, where Robbinsville has the only high school students on the West Windsor campus.
Per-pupil spending for the 2021-22 school year was $14,836 for the Robbinsville schools, compared with the state average of $18,208.
Betze said the school district also offers a nurturing staff, with counselors and clinicians focused on social and emotional learning, mental health and a gifted and talented program. There are also numerous educational and transitional services for students with disabilities, such as the SOAR program that provides real-life job training both on and offsite.
“Extracurricular activities also provide a channel for reinforcing the lessons learned in the classroom,” Betze said. “We offer students the opportunity to apply academic skills in a real-world context, which is all part of a well-rounded education.”
He noted that 677 students participate in high school clubs, such as the robotics program that is hosting a national competition in March, extensive performing arts and visual arts offerings and athletic programs that continually win league and state championships.
Looking forward, the school district has launched a five-year strategic plan process, to be completed by June, involving 109 community volunteers in a series of meetings. The first meeting, comprising parents, residents, school staff and 10 students, held its first meeting on January 31.
There are also capital improvement needs that will be addressed, such as classroom upgrades, new security features, parking lot paving, energy-efficient upgrades, HVAC repairs, high school auditorium updates and even changing the logo on the high school football field.
“In closing, I am very proud to say the state of our schools is very, very strong,” Betze said. “By continuing to work together, we will make the Robbinsville Public Schools the preeminent school system our children – and this community – deserves.”
During the “State of the Schools,” the superintendent also highlighted the recipients of the Superintendent’s Leadership Awards, presented at school board meetings to students, staff and community leaders who continually serve as role models. In addition, student council and executive council leaders were celebrated.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–As a child, Srinand Tanakala found fun in numbers.
There were weekends spent solving puzzles like Sudoku with his sister, in addition to more imaginative games, such as calculating the time between lightning strikes and the ensuing boom of thunder.
Today, Tanakala is president of the Robbinsville High School Math League, a growing student organization that has notched recent wins at mathematics competitions around the community, Mercer County and the entire state.
“Math is incredibly thoughtful and trying to think out processes and working together to find solutions to difficult problems is what I have found most rewarding,” Tanakala said. “Working with minds truly interested in mathematics and solving problems that stretch beyond the classroom that have real-world connections is what I find most endearing about this club.”
About 30 students are involved in the student organization at Robbinsville High, ranging from freshmen to seniors. The middle school has a similar club that is also known for its competitive success.
Most of the contests are individual-based; students take written tests and work through complex problems from basic algebra to geometry and pre-calculus.
The competitions are not just about solving equations. Students must apply logic and creative reasoning to find innovative solutions, according to math teacher Alison Rodriguez, who advises the Math League.
This school year has been one of the most successful yet, she said.
“Students are working so hard and they’re putting in the time necessary to be successful and really recognizing that these problems aren’t easy,” said Rodriguez, a veteran educator of 14 years. “They are very, very difficult problems. It has been amazing to watch these students.”
The Math League has finished on top in several recent local competitions, earning first place on December 13 in the Delaware Valley Math League and first place on November 15 and January 17 in the Colonial Valley Math League. Among comparable high schools throughout New Jersey, Robbinsville is consistently landing in the top 15 to 30 schools.
Sarthak Mohapatra, a Robbinsville senior and a member of the Math League since his freshman year, also scored among the top 2.5 percent of competitors in the national American Mathematics Competition. Mohapatra has qualified to take the next round of tests called the American Invitational Mathematics Examination (AIME), a 15-question, three-hour examination. Students who earn a top score on the AIME can then take the United States Math Olympiad or United States Junior Math Olympiad exams, among the most prestigious mathematics contests in the country.
Some students also have earned perfect scores at competitions, such as Aarush Mane. The 14-year-old freshman said he’s been interested in math since he was a child fascinated by rockets.
Mane said his involvement in the program has helped him in more ways than one. Math League, he said, has made him a better problem-solver.
“It’s definitely improving my work ethic in many classes,” said Mane, who dreams of becoming an astronaut. “For me, Math League has not just introduced me to more complex math, but in other areas I’ve learned how you can approach problems in unique ways. It has improved my critical thinking skills, viewing certain situations in different ways.”
Likewise, even though students take individual tests, Tanakala emphasized that teamwork has been central to the club’s success.
“Collaboration is key,” Tanakala said. “We heavily emphasize working together and keeping up sportsmanship. We help each other. We give each other moral support. Any time a person wins a medal, we feel that the whole club has won it.”
After graduation, the 18-year-old senior plans to double major in pre-medicine and computer science in college with the goal of becoming a surgeon.
It is a career path, he said, that illustrates the wide application of mathematical knowledge.
“Math is something that people should not view as restricted to purely a math major,” Tanakala said. “It’s something that stretches to many aspects of the world and society.”
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–A month-long investigation into narcotics distribution in the Mercer County area has culminated with one arrest and the seizure of $25,500 in heroin, Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo J. Onofri reported.
On Thursday, January 26, 2023, members of the Mercer County Narcotics Task Force, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Robbinsville Township Police Department initiated surveillance in a warehouse parking lot on New Cayton Way in Robbinsville based on information received during the investigation. At approximately 6:40 p.m., officers observed the target of the investigation, Melvin Leonard, in the driver’s seat of a black Nissan Altima. He was detained without incident. Sgt. Tom Paglione utilized his K-9 partner, Indy, to conduct an exterior sniff of the vehicle, which resulted in Indy alerting to the scent of narcotics on the passenger side door. A search warrant was executed and, inside of the Altima, officers located a reusable shopping bag with a shoe box inside containing approximately 150 bricks of heroin.
Leonard, 34, of East Orange, NJ, was charged with multiple narcotics offense. The prosecutor’s office has filed a motion to detain him pending trial.
According to Prosecutor Onofri, the street value of the confiscated heroin is approximately $25,500.
Despite having been charged, all persons are presumed innocent until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
Melvin Leonard, 34, of East Orange, NJ, was charged with multiple narcotics offense. The prosecutor’s office has filed a motion to detain him pending trial.
UPPER FREEHOLD (MONMOUTH) ROBBINSVILLE (MERCER)–Around 7:17 p.m. both Robbinsville and Allentown firefighters were dispatched to Old York Road between New Street and Herbert Road for a head on collision with injuries. Robbinsville Police, NJ State Police, Captial Health Allentown EMS and Paramedics, Robbinsville EMS, Millstone Township Fire/EMS and Monmouth County Paramedics also responded to the scene.
Upon arrival it was found that a person in a car ran head on into a pickup truck and the driver of the car was entrapped. Firefighters from both Hope Fire Company of Allentown and Robbinsville Fire Department worked to free the injured driver. The driver was turned over to EMS and transported to the Trauma Center at Captial Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton. A “trauma alert” was called en route to the hospital.
Occupants from the pickup truck were treated by Captial Health EMS Allentown and also transported to Captial Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton.
New Jersey State Police is investigation the crash and currently the roadway is closed for a serious traffic investigation.
No other details are available at this time.
Update at 10:45 p.m. The Hope Fire Company of Allentown was requested to respond back to the scene to help pry the vehicles apart so they could be towed away.
Old York Road borders both Robbinsville in Mercer County and Upper Freehold Township in Monmouth County.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)-On January 6, 2023, Ocean County Superior Court Judge Craig L. Wellerson approved a $110,000 settlement to resolve a child’s lawsuit against the Robbinsville Police Department (Mercer County) and Edward Vincent who, according to app.com’s DataUnverse, is a Robbinsville police officer. According to the lawsuit, the girl was visiting Vincent’s home on January 13, 2018 when a dog at the home “attacked and bit” her.
According to court filings, the dog was owned by the police department and was in Vincent’s custody at the time of the alleged incident. The girl, whose age was not disclosed, relied upon a certification by her plastic surgeon to help justify the settlement amount.
One half of the $110,000 judgment was assessed against the police department and the other half against Vincent. The girl’s attorney received $29,641.44 for his fees and expenses and the remaining $80,538.56 was placed in trust for the girl with the Ocean County Surrogate.
The case is captioned Jennifer Clifton, et al, v. Robbinsville Police Department, et al, New Jersey Superior Court Docket No. OCN-L-1240-21. and Clifton’s attorney was Robert Y. Cook of Forked River. The civil lawsuit and settlement agreement are on-line here.
None of lawsuit’s allegations have been proven or disproven in court. Settlement agreements typically state that payment does not constitute an admission of wrongdoing by any of the employees or officials named in the lawsuit. The lawsuit’s allegations are just that–allegations.
WEST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–Notre Dame Ice Hockey scored within the last 15 seconds of the 3rd period winning the game against Robbinsville-Allentown this afternoon at Mercer County Park Skating Center. The final score was Notre Dame 3 Robbinsville-Allentown 2. See below for today’s photo gallery:
School Board to Receive Plan by July ’23 for Adoption
December 21, 2022
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–As is the standard practice among high-performing school systems, the Robbinsville Public School District is developing a five-year strategic plan with direct guidance from the community.
Nearly 60 volunteers have already signed up to participate in the detailed process, facilitated by the New Jersey Schools Boards Association (NJSBA).
“We are conducting a robust, collaborative, stakeholder-engaged strategic planning process,” explained Robbinsville Schools Superintendent Brian Betze. “A critical aspect of the strategic planning process is the involvement of a cross-section of district stakeholders. They will share their unique perspective about where they want the school district headed over the next five years.”
This “Strategic Plan Working Group” will develop long-term goals and objectives for the school district, focusing on the many strengths of the Robbinsville schools, the challenges they face and the ideas and hopes the community has for its students. A key goal: enhancing college and career readiness for all Robbinsville students.
The working group comprises the superintendent, as well as district teachers, administrators, support staff, parents, community members and students. The group will meet in-person four times: Tuesday, January 31 from 6-7:30 p.m., Wednesday, February 15 from 6-7:30 p.m., Wednesday, March 15 from 6-7:30 p.m. and Monday, April 3 from 6-7 p.m. The meetings will take place at various schools in the district.
Those interested in volunteering for this important work are urged to complete a form by 5 p.m. by Wednesday, January 25. The Office of the Superintendent will contact everyone selected for the committee.
Betze, who has undertaken similar strategic plans in other school districts, expects the plan will have plenty of specifics in the first year. But then, over the course of the following years, the plan is intentionally designed to be much more flexible, with the ability to easily adjust to new opportunities and challenges. If the plan is too rigid for too long, Betze noted, then it could no longer be applicable and could lose its usefulness.
The superintendent noted the Robbinsville schools underwent a similar process before the pandemic. But because of remote learning and other challenges that COVID caused, the school district was eager to start fresh with a new five-year plan. The plan is expected to be before the school board by its July meeting for review and adoption.
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo J. Onofri reported today this his Cyber Crimes Unit is investigating recent telephone scams where callers spoof the non-emergency telephone numbers for various police departments within Mercer County in an attempt to scam residents. The scammers falsely claim the resident has a warrant for their arrest. As a reminder, law enforcement will never ask for payment of any type over the phone nor will they ask for personal identifying information that could be used for fraudulent purposes. Law enforcement and government agencies will also never ask you to pay by unusual methods, such as gift cards, wire transfers or cryptocurrency.
Scammers research potential victims on the internet and social media. Then they call and deceive their victims into thinking the callers are law enforcement officers, prosecutors or police employees. Scammers may spoof a law enforcement telephone number, falsely showing on the victim’s caller ID. They threaten victims with arrest for outstanding warrants or other legal issues.
Should you receive a call from a police department within Mercer County or the Prosecutor’s Office, please confirm who you are speaking with. If you believe you received a scam telephone call, hang up and call the number back. If the call is legitimate, you’ll be connected with a police dispatcher or receptionist who can verify the caller’s identity. Report any scam calls to your local law enforcement agency. Please share this message with your family and friends, especially the elderly, to help prevent phone scams.
NEWARK, N.J. – Four people have been charged for their roles in a kickback conspiracy involving COVID-19 testing that defrauded federal health insurance programs, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced today.
Abid Syed, 45, of East Hanover, New Jersey; Tariq Din, 55, of Saddle River, New Jersey; David Weathers, 59, of the Bronx, New York; and Muhammed Aurangzeb, 45, of Robbinsville, New Jersey, are each charged by indictment with one count of conspiracy to violate the federal Anti-Kickback Statute for their roles in a scheme to defraud Medicare and the Health Resources and Services Administration COVID-19 Uninsured Program. Weathers and Aurangzeb had their initial appearances via videoconference today before U.S. Magistrate Judge José R. Almonte. Aurangzeb was released on $100,000 unsecured bond and Weathers consented to detention. Syed and Din were charged by criminal complaint on April 11, 2022.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
From April 2021 to April 2022, Syed and Din operated and controlled Metpath Laboratories, a clinical laboratory located in Parsippany, New Jersey, that conducted testing to detect the presence of COVID-19 in samples obtained from patients. Through Metpath, Syed and Din paid kickbacks to “marketers” – including Weathers and Aurangzeb – for referrals of COVID-19 test samples to Metpath. Weathers and Aurangzeb were each paid $5 to $30 per referral.
The conspirators tried to make the payments appear to be for legitimate business expenses. For example, Syed altered the amount of the kickback payment to make it appear as if the marketer was a “consultant” for Metpath with legitimate business expenses. In another instance, Weathers’ company – MedtechCares Inc. – issued invoices to Metpath to make it appear as though the kickback payments from Metpath were legitimate business expenses, when in fact the payments were entirely for the referrals.
Metpath received more than $3.5 million in insurance reimbursements from federal health insurance programs for COVID-19 test samples referred by Weathers and Aurangzeb.
The charge of conspiracy to violate the federal Anti-Kickback Statute is punishable by a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison. The maximum fine for each count is $250,000, or twice the gross profit or loss caused by the offense, whichever is greatest.
U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge James E. Dennehy, with the investigation leading to the charges.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney DeNae M. Thomas of the Health Care Fraud Unit in Newark.
The charges and allegations contained in the indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
Defense counsel: Syed: Lee Vartan Esq., West Orange, New Jersey Din: Amy Luria Esq., Michael Critchley Esq., and Armando Suarez Esq., Roseland, New Jersey Aurangzeb: Bruce Levy Esq., Hackensack, New Jersey Weathers: Jeff Greco Esq., New York
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–In the wake of numerous issues with voting and counting on Election Day, challenges that are still under investigation, Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes is calling for a thorough public review of what went wrong and a comprehensive overhaul of the elections process in Mercer County.
“After issues in the last two elections, I have come to the conclusion that we must fundamentally change the management of the election process in Mercer County because it is clearly not working,” the County Executive said. “There are legal limits to what I can do as County Executive but rest assured that I will do everything within my power to ensure the integrity of elections in Mercer County and will tolerate nothing less.”
In Mercer County, three separate entities, the Board of Elections, the Superintendent of Elections, and the Office of the County Clerk each plays a role in elections. Board of Elections commissioners are appointed by the respective County Chairs of the Republican and Democratic Parties, the Superintendent of Elections is an appointee of the Governor, and the County Clerk is an elected position.
“I am happy that Mercer County Clerk Paula Sollami-Covello requested that the County Prosecutor look into the election. But we also need a more thorough and public review. We’ve got too many people in control and the quality of our elections has suffered as a result, undermining peoples’ faith in the democratic process,” Mr. Hughes said.
Moving forward, County Executive Hughes proposes the following:
Request a special meeting of the Commissioner Board to bring together the Clerk, Superintendent and Election Board Chair explain to the public what went wrong.
Reform and simplify our election process by merging and unifying the Office of the Superintendent and the Board into one, and having an experienced Executive Director oversee our elections.
Call on legislators to enact changes that will allow Mercer County to reform our system.
Pledge any county resources needed to ensure every vote is counted and help get to the bottom of what went wrong hasten and conclude investigation.
“I pledge to you that we will get to the bottom of this and that every vote will be counted,” Mr. Hughes said. “I have listened to the people of Mercer County and have spoken with election officials, and we are committed to finding out how we can improve the election process and to prevent future incidents as the one on Election Day.”
In Mercer County, the Office of the County Executive does not supervise the Board, their offices, nor does it have jurisdiction. The board is responsible for selecting polling places, training board workers, receiving and counting vote-by-mail ballots, and counting and certifying provisional ballots. The Superintendent of Elections handles voter registration, renews registration records, investigates provisional ballots, and is the custodian of voting machines. The County Clerk designs and prints all election ballots, processes vote by mail applications, and officially certifies the election results.
File photo: Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes
File photo: Robbinsville Township Mayor Dave Fried
Robbinsville Township Mayor Dave Fried said in a Facebook post:
“Regarding the events of Election Day, here is what we know so far.
Either the machine scanners did not work, or the ballots were printed incorrectly and the machines did their jobs and correctly spit them out as invalid. An investigation is reportedly under way, and Robbinsville will join other elected officials across Mercer County to see that the investigation is complete and transparent.
Let me be clear: I am not blaming anyone. Honestly, I do not know how this happened. Pointing fingers without all the facts is not productive. We do know that this is the second straight year the County process did not work as it should have, and I am not happy with much of what I saw.
One of the basic tenets of our democracy is the right to vote, and that every vote will be counted.
As of today, it appears our District 5 ballots (Library) have been found after having been misplaced. That information was given directly to our Municipal Clerk Michele Seigfried from the County.
Just a quick note about our clerk’s office. Michele and her team of Deputy Clerk Kaitlyn Macellaro and Sandy DeLorenzo performed exceptionally under extremely difficult conditions this past week. I cannot thank them enough for their service to our Township. The same goes for our Administration team, led by B.A. Joy Tozzi, each of whom worked all hours of the day and night in the chaotic aftermath of Election Day.
Over in Princeton, it seems they discovered ballots still in their machines. During in-person voting on Election Day, two slots for placing ballots were used. The first was the so-called emergency slot. This was used in the early part of the day because officials had hoped the scanner problems could be fixed before polls closed. As the day went on, that emergency bin became full and the scanners were removed so the main bin could be used. They discovered Princeton’s ballots were still in some of those containers since both sides were not emptied. It also appears that the documentation of the chain of custody regarding our ballots was quite poor, allowing the ballots to be apparently misplaced for a time.
The courts have ordered all the machines returned to the Mercer County Board of Elections for inspection to ensure there are no more ballots in those machines, including the ones deployed in Robbinsville.
I DO NOT believe there was any type of fraud, and I DO NOT believe there are any conspiracies at work here. I do believe mistakes were made at a time in our nation when it can ill-afford to stumble on Election Day.
We have spent millions of dollars on these machines and ballots, and they clearly did not work as advertised. It is time to reassess and come up with a better system. Those of you who voted early did not seem to have any issues. Perhaps we need to consider moving entirely in that direction. I will be attending all upcoming Mercer County Commissioner’s meetings until we have a real and fortified plan. Together, I am hopeful we will come up with a solution. Robbinsville has no intention of paying for this process unless real change is implemented.
I have no reason to believe, even with ballots that may or may not still be out there, that our local results will change.
Thus, I sincerely congratulate our three new Board of Education members – Jeffrey Pierro, Raghu Nandan and Peter Oehlberg. I wish each of you the best of luck, and I am sorry your first election was fraught with so much turmoil.
I have always said putting your name on a ballot is one of the most difficult – but potentially rewarding things – a person can do. Although no candidate should have to wait days for results in 2022, each of you earned your rightful place among your other BOE members.
While Ballot Question #1, which sought to combine our Planning and Zoning Boards into a consolidated Land Use Board, did pass, Ballot Question #2 regarding an increase in our Open Space tax to preserve more land and slow development did not. I know times are tough. That is why we put items such as these questions on the ballot. Sometimes we think we know what the residents want, but this process helps us know for certain.”
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County Clerk Paula Sollami Covello told MidJersey.News in an email, “Although this is under the board of elections, I have been informed that they were all found by them and are being counted.”
As reported yesterday by MidJersey.news a bag of Robbinsville emergency ballots went missing, and also 3 Princeton districts also appeared to be missing as of this morning.
The Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office Spokesperson Casey DeBlasio, told MidJersey.news in an email, “I can confirm the county clerk did reach out to the prosecutor today. We are reviewing her concerns to determine what further action should be taken.”
MidJersey.news did reach out to Mercer County Board of Elections this morning and have not received a reply yet.
Check back with MidJersey.news we will update as information becomes available.
*Results are not official until all votes are counted and certified. This includes ballots cast by mail, provisional, and ballots requiring a signature cure. These first two reports above must be ADDED for a cumulative total (until further notice)! –Note the PDF files below and the above link must be added together to get the most accurate until updated by County Clerk’s Office
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Sgt. Philip Curry from the New Jersey State Police, Public Information Unit told MidJersey.news that a crash occurred at 3:54 p.m. on the NJ Turnpike southbound on the inner roadway at mile post 61.9 in Robbinsville. Preliminary information revealed that a Chevy Trailblazer lost control, struck the guardrail, then struck a Toyota Rav4 and overturned. Both drivers sustained minor injuries. Robbinsville Fire Department and EMS responded to the scene.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Robbinsville Township reported on social media that due to a Mercer County-wide system outage, all voting machines are currently down in each district across the County.
Voters can still report to their respective polling locations and vote on a standard ballot and insert their ballot into the “emergency slot” in the machine. However, Mercer County officials will be unable to tally those votes tonight and are working to fix the system issue.
8:00 a.m. UPDATE:
Mercer County Clerk Paula Sollami Covello posted on Facebook that there is a glitch with the Dominion scanners. Voters can still vote by completing their ballots and placing them in the top of the scanning machine in the slot where the emergency ballots are placed. Everyone can vote manually, so rest assured no one will be disenfranchised.
8:08 a.m. UPDATE:
Mercer County reports: The Board of Elections has advised the county of issues with voting machines. Poll workers will be on hand to walk voters through the process. The board is working with Dominion, the machine maker, to resolve the issue.
“All votes cast in this General Election will be scanned on high capacity scanners by the Mercer County Board of Elections, at their central location, instead of at the polling locations by the voters. The Board of Elections is a bipartisan commission. Fortunately, we have hand-marked paper ballot system.
The Mercer County Clerk’s Office does not oversee voting machines or the voting equipment, but all three offices work together to make sure that the process is secure and transparent.
We made it through Hurricane Sandy, through 2020 and we will make it through this one too and no one will be disenfranchised.”
Update from the Mercer County Superintendent of Elections Nathaniel Walker
November 8, 2022 – 2 p.m.
Soon after polls opened this morning, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, poll workers became aware of an issue with the voting machine scanners. Voters are being asked to fill out the ballot as they normally would. A contingency plan is in place for all ballots cast at all locations to be scanned at the secure Board of Elections office.
Again, ballots will be scanned just as they would at the polling location. Every ballot that has been cast will be counted, no voter will be disenfranchised, and the integrity of the election is intact and secure.
Additionally, provisional ballots are available to those who would prefer to vote provisionally. A provisional ballot can be obtained at a voter’s polling location.
Further information will be reported as it becomes known.
– Nathaniel Walker, Mercer County Superintendent Of Elections
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Hope Fire Company and Allentown – Captial Health EMS responded at 6:37 p.m. to Old York Road and Montgomery Way for a T-bone crash with reported injuries. Robbinsville Township Police and New Jersey State Police also responded to the scene of the crash. The injuries were minor, and one person was placed in the back of the ambulance for evaluation of injuries but did not seek transport to the hospital. Hope Fire Company stood by for cleanup and assisted Robbinsville Police with traffic control. The Robbinsville Township Police Department is investigating the crash.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)-When the first pitch is thrown at 7:37 p.m. Friday, as the Philadelphia Phillies take on the San Diego Padres in the National League Championship Series, you can bet that Kelly Fleck will have a great view at Citizens Bank Park.
Fleck, an AP history teacher for the past two years at Robbinsville High School, also happens to be finishing her stint as a Phillies Ballgirl, a part-time job she has had on plenty of summer nights and weekends over the last two baseball seasons.
“Friday night is going to be awesome; I can’t wait for the hometown crowd,” Fleck said. “The excitement of playoff baseball is just incredible. It’s something I’ve been waiting to experience.”
Fleck, 23, will be in left field for Saturday night’s game to grab foul balls and toss them into the crowd. During the rest of the homestand, Fleck will be in the stands, serving as an ambassador for the Ballgirls and helping out with the stadium’s recycling efforts.
“The fans have been great; they are always nice to me because they want me to throw them a foul ball,” Fleck said. “Every once in a while, I’ll hear `Ms. Fleck! Ms. Fleck!’ and I’ll know instantly that some of my students from Robbinsville came to see the Phillies play.”
Fleck even has her own baseball card, which she signs and hands out to fans during the game. She also distributes “rally towels” to fans, while also selling 50-50 raffles to raise money for Philadelphia-based charities.
There are 19 Phillies Ballgirls, all of whom are eager to rotate onto the field during a big weekend of playoff baseball in Philly.
During the season, in which the Phillies played 81 home games and then defeated the Atlanta Braves in the wild-card playoffs, Fleck would take the 80-minute drive from her home in Ocean Gate to serve as a Ballgirl for the Philly fans.
So how did this history teacher become a Phillies Ballgirl?
The Phillies advertise on college campuses. Her two older sisters, Joanna and Jenna, became Ballgirls. So, when it was time for Fleck to try out in 2020, she was ready. She competed with about 100 candidates who submitted videos. She went through an on-camera interview, as well as tests in fielding, throwing and batting. Some of the women even played college ball, so competition was fierce.
“Over the past two seasons, I’ve made some good plays out there,” Fleck said. “Usually, I let the foul ball hit the wall first because, as you can imagine, the players hit the ball really hard. It can get a little scary out there. I once got a bruise.”
Fleck said she will be retiring as a BallGirl this season, as the Phillies only allow two seasons, based on the high demand.
Robbinsville Schools Superintendent Brian Betze said the school community will be cheering on the history and global studies teacher this weekend.
“Robbinsville may have its Mets, Phillies and Yankee fans, but we are all certainly Kelly Fleck fans,” Betze said. “What a tremendous opportunity for her. We are all very proud.”
Fleck said she is squarely focused on the best-of-seven series against the Padres, but can’t help but dream what would happen if the Phillies win the whole thing. “The Ballgirls would certainly be in the parade,” she said. “And, who knows, maybe we will get a World Series ring!”
It all depends, this teacher notes, if the Phillies make some history.
Overturned truck involved with at least one other vehicle just prior to Exit 7A at Mile Post 61.4 South Bound with three ALS type injuries. (Advanced Life Support)
October 6, 2022
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–At 3:12 p.m. the Robbinsville Township Fire Department was dispatched for an overturned vehicle with entrapment at mile post 61.4 south bound outer lanes of the New Jersey Turnpike just prior to Exit 7A. When firefighters and EMS arrived it was determined that there were three ALS – Advance Life Support patients and additional Captial Health Paramedics and ambulances from Allentown and Bordentown were requested to the scene. Three people were transported to Captial Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton and trauma alerts were called.
Currently at 5:00 p.m. Google traffic reports that traffic is backed up over six miles going south bound between Exit 7A and Exit 8 avoid the NJ Turnpike in this area. NJ Turnpike reports all lanes blocked until further notice.
The New Jersey State Police is investigating the crash.
There are no additional details available at this time.
The New Jersey State Police Public Information Unit says that the crash occurred at 3:09 p.m. on the NJ Turnpike southbound on the outer roadway at mile post 61.4 in Robbinsville Township. The preliminary investigation revealed that a Mack truck with semi-trailer was traveling south in the right lane of the outer roadway. A Honda CRV was traveling south in the center lane of the outer roadway. In the area of mile post 61.4 the front right of the Honda struck the front left of the Mack. After the initial impact, the Honda struck the left guardrail and the Mack struck the left guardrail causing it to overturn. The driver of the Mack sustained serious injuries and the driver of the Honda sustained moderate injuries. The southbound outer roadway was closed for approximately 5 hours and caused major traffic congestion. The cause of the crash is under investigation.
HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Around 9:20 a.m. the Robbinsville Fire Department and EMS along with Bordentown Township firefighters responded to the New Jersey Turnpike just south of Exit 7A for an overturned truck with reported entrapment in the outer lanes of the roadway. Upon arrival at mile post 59.2 it was determined that a person was not entrapped but had a severe ALS type head injury. The person was placed in the ambulance and transported with a trauma alert called to Captial Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton, Captial Health Paramedics met the ambulance enroute to the trauma center. The New Jersey Turnpike Authority was on scene inspecting road damage and making repairs. NJTPA also had a sand truck to mitigate a fuel spill from the overturned truck. The New Jersey State Police is investigating the crash.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Mayor Dave Fried delivered the 2022 State of Robbinsville Township address today via video courtesy of Pulse Productions.
Due to logistics and time constraints regarding this year’s possible beneficiary candidates, the anticipated “Pay it Forward” component of the annual address has been pushed back to May, 2023.
“There were just too many hurdles to overcome in 2022. Our plan is to hold that event, hopefully bigger and better than ever, in May of 2023,” Mayor Fried said. “This is an event we look forward to each and every year. We don’t do anything unless we have all possible resources at our disposal to provide the best possible experience for our beneficiary(s), all of our generous sponsors and the community.”
Donations for Robbinsville families in need are being accepted via PayPal through our SOTT fiscal sponsor, the C.A.R.E. program. Those updated links, as well as a formal release date for Mayor Fried’s video, will be provided soon.
Previous “Pay it Forward” recipients include the Shepherd Family, Quilts for Comfort, Deborah Dauer, the C.A.R.E. Program, Mercer Street Friends Food Bank, “We Love Our R’ville Neighbors” campaign and Kelly Breden.
Since 2015, those efforts have raised over $400,000.
The accident occurred at 7:50 a.m. about 100 yards south of the school, in which the 10-year-old student sustained a leg injury when his bicycle hit a passenger vehicle. The boy is now recovering.
In response, Robbinsville Police Chief Mike Polaski has been in discussions with school and municipal officials about ways in which the local streets could be safer for pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers. The police chief also spoke at the September 27 Board of Education meeting to address the community’s concerns.
“We understand that there is a perception from some in the community that we have a safety issue at that mid-block crosswalk,” Polaski said. “We are working with the school district and the township administration to increase safety near the Pond Road Middle School. We have already assigned a stronger police presence.”
In addition, the township has re-lined the crosswalk between Route 526 and Hutchinson Road where the incident occurred to make the markings more pronounced. There is also a traffic enforcement message board to remind drivers to slow down in a school area.
Police have also hired a crossing guard, with training expected in early October, for the location, located mid-block between two housing developments.
Schools Superintendent Brian J. Betze said student safety is always the top priority.
“We are thankful that our student involved in the accident is recovering well, but incidents like this always make us take pause and see if we can do better,” the superintendent said. “I am thankful for our partnership with the Robbinsville Police Department and Robbinsville Township, which have equally stepped up to ensure Pond Road is as safe as possible for our students as well as the overall community.”
ROBBINSVILLE TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)—Robbinsville Township Police reported that on Friday September 23, 2022 Robbinsville Police, Robbinsville Fire, Robbinsville EMS were dispatched at 3:44 p.m. to the BAPS Temple at 100 North Main Street in the Windsor section of the Township for a construction accident. Upon arrival police officers were directed to the rear of the property where curbing was being installed. It was determined that a construction accident occurred resulting in a worker fatality. The victim a 57-year-old male from Hillside, NJ was located and pronounced dead at the scene. Police say that next of kin notifications are pending and the incident is being investigated by the Robbinsville Township Police Department.
A spokesperson for the Department of Labor told MidJersey.News that OSHA-Occupational Safety and Health Administration is also investigating.
MidJersey.News File photos from May 11, 2021
Previous MidJersey.news stories about BAPS Mandir from May 2021 there have been no updates provided from authorities about the below stories from 2021.
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