As Mahwah is embarking on a New Year, Patch is reflecting on the issues the township faced in 2012. Exactly one year ago, we predicted what the biggest issues of the year would be in Mahwah.
Of course, there were some big ones that we missed – there was no way we could have known another hundred year storm would hit the area in 2012. In hindsight, Patch is wondering if you think our predicted issues were actually the ones that mattered most.
What Patch Predicted:
Mahwah’s Master Plan – Public hearings on the document, which outlines guidelines for future land use in Mahwah, started early in 2012, and still have yet to wrap. Throughout the hearings, issues on future developments in Mahwah, like senior housing, residential developments, a “downtown” area, and more pedestrian and mass transit-friendly setups, have been raised throughout the ongoing hearing. Recently, residents questioned some of the environmental protections raised in the document.
The Crossroads Town Center – The proposed development was a major issue in 2011, ongoing public hearings on the development have been happening throughout 2012 and will continue in 2013, and a lawsuit questioning the validity of the ordinance allowing for the shopping center development is still undecided. But, 2012 also saw some changes in the anti-mall movement.
The 2012 Mayoral Race – The second in two years, Mahwah saw debates about political signage, several arguments between the mayor and council members and lots of campaigning by both candidates in the months leading up to the November election.
Taxes – Municipal taxes went up 1.75% in 2012, and school taxes went up 2%. Municipal leaders said meeting a 2% tax levy cap mandated by the state would be difficult, and Mayor Bill Laforet formed a citizens panel as a think tank for taxes. The Blue Ribbon Panel became a controversial issue during the election. Township officials have already said reaching 2013’s 2% tax cap will be more difficult than 2012’s.
School Leadership – We thought a new Mahwah Superintendent would top headlines last year, but interim Dr. Karen Lake signed on for a second year. The board of ed must decide on a new superintendent by the end of this school year.
So, were our predictions on the money? Did you care about these issues in 2012, or did they fall by the wayside, with other concerns taking their place?