MontClairVoyant: News to Remember in the Month of December

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

The Montclair Property Owners Association is threatening to sue after the Township Council extended the COVID-caused rent freeze through March 2022. Comment?

Sincerely,

Court and Snark

For an organization pleading financial struggles for some of its membership, the MPOA sure has lots of money available for legal costs and marketing. Montclair had a Gap; the MPOA has a Credibility Gap.


DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

And the irony of it all?

Sincerely,

Pair of Docs Paradox

Councilor-at-Large Robert Russo said it well when noting that Montclair might not have needed a lengthy rent freeze if it had the 2020-passed rent control blocked by the MPOA.


DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

So, where does the litigious MPOA rank in unpopularity?

Sincerely,

Voyage to the Bottom of the See

In the top 10 along with smoking, Trump rallies, slow Wi-Fi, Brussels sprouts, a bed of nails, insurance forms, “Wheels on the Bus” ringtones, wearing Groucho glasses during Zoom sessions, and the in-front-of-you airline passenger reclining his coach seat so suddenly your knees are pushed eight rows back.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

As the rest of your body stays where it is. Meanwhile, Ira Karasick has resigned as township attorney and apologized for a racially charged remark he made in September. Thoughts?

Sincerely,

Not a Courtly Comment

1) Karasick should have resigned soon after the remark. 2). At least he finally gave up a job he couldn’t credibly keep. 3) Nice to see a pretty strong public mea culpa, albeit late; officials everywhere rarely apologize. 4) A tort is a tiny tortoise with a law degree.


DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

Your mention of a slow-moving tortoise reminds me that it took a long time for the Karasick matter to be decided on. Was the Township Council hoping to sweep things under the rug?

Sincerely,

Balk at the Slow-Walk

Maybe, maybe not. I’m glad Montclair NAACP official William Scott — the recipient of Karasick’s remark — and other witnesses didn’t let this go. As for sweeping things under the rug, Thing 1 and Thing 2 have personal issues with that.


DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

“The Cat in the Hat”! Meanwhile, it looks like there’ll be a special election March 8 to elect two Board of Education members. Why?

Sincerely,

Duo the Right Thing

After last month’s welcome referendum result, an early element of the Montclair BOE’s transition from appointed to elected is to increase its membership from seven to nine. As a bonus, every polling place will feature a full performance of the musical “Nine.”


DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

No such performances. Of course, the BOE will eventually become all elected, right?

Sincerely,

A Change Is Gonna Come

Of course. It will be interesting to see who throws their hat in the ring — which is easier than throwing a ring in a hat. Or seven rings. Or nine rings.


DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

I’m now officially “Bored of the Rings.” Isn’t it disappointing that there’s currently no plan to have residents also vote March 8 to fund badly needed infrastructure improvements in our old schools?

Sincerely,

Build Back Better

Yes. Those improvements shouldn’t wait until a later vote. Sure, Montclair could purchase some Barbie toy classrooms for teachers and students to temporarily assemble in, but social-distancing might be tricky.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

Speaking of the BOE, it’s very sad that board member Dr. Alfred Davis Jr. died. Any comment about the passing of this highly regarded man?

Sincerely,

Melancholy in Montclair

Condolences to his family and all who knew him. What a life of service he led: his medical practice, his being a founding member of the Montclair African-American Heritage Foundation, and much more.


DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

Awkward to ask at this time, but how will his BOE seat be filled during the appointed-to-elected transition?

Sincerely,

Succession Question

Not sure that’s known yet.


DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

Kudos for not including humor in those last two Q&As. Has consecutive seriousness ever happened before in your 2003-launched column?

Sincerely,

Not Usual to Be Unusual

Looking back, I see no “Montclairvoyant” jokes at all in 1996.


DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

Duh — you weren’t writing this column in ’96.

Sincerely,

Clint on Clinton Avenue

Are you implying I used a ghostwriter that year?

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

Getting back to the BOE, a public speaker lamented at a recent board meeting that our school district hasn’t hired a replacement nursing supervisor this year. Reaction?

Sincerely,

Medical Alert

A dumb non-move during COVID that’s another example of Central Office and the appointed BOE dropping the ball — and not in a fun way like at Times Square on New Year’s Eve.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

Hasn’t COVID also meant school nurses being even more overworked than usual?

Sincerely,

Waiting to Exhale

Yes, and those medical experts deserve better. They certainly give more professional exams than the Pearson educational-testing company does.


DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

Lastly, your response to Montclair extending the use of loud, polluting, gas-powered leaf blowers from December 15 to December 31 — and then rescinding that extension because of public dismay?

Sincerely,

Prefer-to-Rake Jake

Glad the town came to its senses. Sure, the relatively mild autumn has kept leaves on trees longer, but the vast majority will have fallen by December 15 — and it’s good to have some remain on the ground. Just don’t rake Thing 1 and Thing 2 under them.

 

 

Dave Astor, author, is the MontClairVoyant. His opinions about politics and local events are strictly his own and do not represent or reflect the views of Baristanet.

 

 

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