Author Topic: Hurricane Sandy  (Read 21306 times)

Offline BLeafe

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Re: Hurricane Sandy/Other images, 10-29 to 10-31
« Reply #15 on: November 08, 2012, 11:00:13 PM »
1. During the storm, 10-29, 10:00pm: After all power was knocked out, a cop - lights blazing - turns off Main onto Ward and zigzags as he slowly checks everything on both sides of the street with his spotlight, which is not visible.

2. The morning after, 10-30, 9:04am: It sorta looks like a hurricane's eye over the Hackensack River.

3. 10-31, 10:33am: The broken NYC crane hangs over 57th St.

4. 10-31, 2:05pm: Giant snails huddle together for safety by the river in Bogota.

5. 10-31, 2:17pm: A tree is held up by wires on Prospect Ave, just north of Clinton Place.

6. 10-31, 2:19pm: A rare sight - Clinton Place is completely devoid of Halloween decorations on Halloween.

7. 10-31, 7:53pm: State St has power, but not Main or River streets. My building lost power again, so, from my living room, the Peruvian restaurant is the only place with electricity in Hackensack, Teaneck, or Bogota.

8. 10-31, 8:45pm: Manhattan is aglow in the upper right, but the only NJ lights are in the lower left. They belong to cars as they travel on the winding road between the Midtown Bridge and the intersection of River Rd and Main St in Bogota.

9. 10-31, midnight snack by candlelight: Taking a break from listening to music on an old portable CD player (when was the last time you heard "21st Century Schizoid Man"?).


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Offline BLeafe

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Re: Hurricane Sandy/Aftermath: Chopper up and chopped up
« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2012, 11:17:13 PM »
1. I don't know why, but there was a Coast Guard chopper over my apartment last Sunday.

2. & 3. The tree behind my building that the hurricane knocked down (plus one other) finally got removed a week later.

4. The last view of one of the trees.

5. Dust to (saw)dust.

6. They also removed two other trees on Ward St by the Second Reformed Church. They're shown here being loaded on the truck.

7. This is the stump of the tree that Sandy sent through a fence onto my building's property.


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Offline Editor

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Re: Hurricane Sandy
« Reply #17 on: November 09, 2012, 11:09:59 AM »
Click here for an essay I wrote about our experience.

Offline Editor

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Re: Hurricane Sandy
« Reply #18 on: November 09, 2012, 01:04:28 PM »
Power restored to some parts in Hackensack, but many remain in the dark
Friday November 9, 2012, 9:42 AM
BY  CAESAR DARIAS
CORRESPONDENT
Hackensack Chronicle
Print | E-mail

HACKENSACK - Election Day saw power to all polling stations restored, according to Hackensack City Manager Stephen Lo Iacono, as the city continued to recover from the power outages and a gas shortage brought on by Hurricane Sandy's arrival last week.


Hackensack police maintain order as cars, on the left, line up for gas at the Delta station on Hudson Street.
CAESAR DARIAS/PHOTO


Hackensack police maintain order as cars, on the left, line up for gas at the Delta station on Hudson Street.
Jen Lafontant stands on Washington Avenue - behind his Lafayette Street house - where two trees fell during Hurricane Sandy on Tuesday.
CAESAR DARIAS/PHOTOS

Jen Lafontant stands on Washington Avenue - behind his Lafayette Street house - where two trees fell during Hurricane Sandy on Tuesday.

"City hall, the police department, the fire department were turned on last evening," said Lo Iacono. "A good part of the city is on."

Portions of Hackensack, however, remained in the dark Tuesday morning as some residents continue to cope with lack of power and gasoline lines, albeit with shorter waits.

Tannia Munoz is critical of the city's efforts during Hurricane Sandy. Munoz, her husband and her 8-month-old baby had to leave their home on East Broadway after flooding left them without furniture and shoes. They now sleep on a "mattress bed."

"We don't have power. We don't have gas, no heat, no hot water," said the life-long Hackensack resident. "We're staying in Jersey City right now in one of my college friend's apartment. All we were able to get out was clothes."

Munoz, who graduated from Rutgers Law School this year, says she's looking for a job and also a new place to live.

Before the flood, she was living in a house owned by her parents who also own the house next door.

"They should have said a mandatory evacuation for people next to the River," asserted Munoz. "We didn't know it was going to be that bad."

The city did post this announcement on their web site in bold letters: "Residents in known flood prone areas have been asked to voluntary self evacuate to higher ground. It's recommended that they stay with friends and family."

According to Lo Iacono, officials were proactive prior to Sandy's arrival.

"All of the low lying areas - the areas that typically flood in the city - we started last Saturday, by public address, obviously on the web, reverse 911, printed flyers that were hand-delivered by fire personnel door-to-door in those areas, advising everyone they should leave and they should evacuate," said Lo Iacono.

"We were way ahead of the curve on that," Lo Ianoco continued. "Unfortunately, as is always the case, some people don't want to leave their homes and don't follow those directives. And so in the midst of the storm we had to evacuate some people by boat. One of our firemen was injured in the course of doing that."

Munoz says she now worries about her newborn son's health. "He actually has bronchitis right now because we tried to tough it out and we stayed in my parents room," said Munoz.

Maria Di Leone thought her troubles were behind her Sunday night when the power kicked in at 8:30 p.m. However, after two hours she says it was cut off and, as of earlier this week, continues to run a generator - secured with a heavy chain, "just in case" - behind her house.

"It's really stressful but we got the generator, we manage," said Di Leone, 56, who has lived in her house for 31 years. "I understand there are people worse off than us. We try to keep our spirits up."

According to Di Leone, her $1,100 generator lets her maintain power to essentials such as her refrigerator, telephone and a light in the kitchen."

Her family had a generator before the fury of Hurricane Sandy hit, but it broke. "On Wednesday [my husband] went to Home Depot in North Bergen and he went to get another one."

Was it worth the expense? "Right now it is worth it because we need the lights," said Di Leone. "It's a lot of money we had to spend, but when you have to do it, you have to do it."

Di Leone's gas powered generator, required frequent short walks to the Delta gas station one block away on Hudson Street. "We're using a lot gas. We did the line two hours one night, two hours another night, two hours in the morning, she said on Sunday night.

Jen Lafontant, 57, has been living around the corner on Lafayette Street for 30 years. He had no power on Sunday night. He and his wife light candles at night to keep warm.

"For food, thank God, we have gas and hot water so we can take a shower and cook food, if we have to," said Lafontant. "The only trouble is since there is no electricity there's nothing in the fridge so we have to go out and buy things as you need it."

He says he's feeling neglected. "Some of our neighbors have light and we don't," he said. "We feel like the unwanted child. It ridiculous in the time and age that we have to go through such a routine. But that's the situation."

And at the Delta station, where the street lights and traffic lights were dark Sunday night, a relatively short line of motorists waited their turn to fill up as several Hackensack police personnel maintained order.

Residents on foot also waited their turn while holding the now ubiquitous red gas canisters.

Yanire Garcia, 48, was next in line. The Prospect Avenue resident got her power back Friday morning.

"The good thing is I had filled the tank right before the storm hit," said Garcia. "So I've been trying just to be conservative on the gas."

Garcia's commute, however, just got longer. "I normally work [as a shipping manager] in Moonachie," she said. "But that's gone. They relocated my office up to Mahwah which is farther."

Back on Washington Avenue on Sunday night, Javier Rodriguez surveyed two trees that used to stand on public land but were lying on private property.

Rodriguez, a tree removal specialist who owns Elmwood Services in Paterson, has been removing trees for 17 years.

He says he has never seen so much destruction in New Jersey. "I've never seen it like this," said Rodriguez, who was joined by a Department of Public Works supervisor.

Asked how many trees he has removed over the last five days, Rodriguez said, "I lost track already." He estimates he has removed at least 100 trees.

Email: hackensack@northjersey.com

Offline Editor

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Re: Hurricane Sandy (water rescue video)
« Reply #19 on: November 09, 2012, 09:36:04 PM »
Spoiler Alert: This is quite possibly the most ridiculous thing I've ever seen.

« Last Edit: November 09, 2012, 09:45:35 PM by Editor »

Offline BLeafe

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Re: Hurricane Sandy/Before and After
« Reply #20 on: November 12, 2012, 11:30:06 AM »
Not knowing how destructive Hurricane Sandy might be to the overall local landscape, I decided to do before-and-after photo stitches of one particular scene.

The first one was taken on October 28 - the day before Sandy hit - and the second one was shot on November 5 - a week after.

I had planned to do the "after" one sooner, but - like everyone else - had other things on my mind. I was also looking for a cloudy day that was similar to October 28, but didn't have the luxury of waiting any longer, so the "after" shot looks different because of sunlight and its attendant shadows and contrasts.

Because the stitches covered a much-wider area, I had to crop them so that only the Kipp's Bend segment is shown here - that's why a non-functional horizontal scroll bar is visible below the "before image.

Since leaves were falling anyway, it's entirely possible that the "after" picture might look very similar to what it would have looked like had Sandy not visited, but I'm sure the storm accelerated the process.

No real destruction is evident. The only noticeable change - other than the loss of foliage - is a different sign above Geri's Lunch. However, I think that sign for webuyuglyhouses.com was up there before (and I've never seen ads repeated there), so maybe a couple of newer signs blew off to re-reveal this one.

A few days later, I saw a big blue patch on the roof of the YMCA (next picture).

Click to enlarge the stitches image.


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Offline Editor

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Re: Hurricane Sandy
« Reply #21 on: November 19, 2012, 09:17:16 AM »
Hackensack apartment residents hope charity can help them through ordeal
Sunday November 18, 2012, 11:55 PM
BY  HARVY LIPMAN
STAFF WRITER
The Record

Although many who live in a Hudson Street apartment building in Hackensack went through harrowing experiences during superstorm Sandy, they survived the ordeal but now face a new set of challenges.


CARMINE GALASSO/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Dwayne Walker and his wife, Claudine, who is five months pregnant, were flooded out of their Hackensack apartment during the storm.

Theyre homeless, nearly all had |their cars totaled by the flood and |those who lived on the first floor lost all their possessions.

And, now, one of Bergen Countys leading charities is mobilizing to help them and other hard-pressed victims of the storm.

One who could be helped is Kerisha Grant, who stood on her bed, kicked out her bedroom window and jumped into a courtyard as the floodwaters from the Hackensack River began rushing through the front door of her apartment at 340 Hudson St. Sandy was just hitting the coast, pushing a wall of tidal water back up the river and onto the streets.

The water was already above her knees as she climbed up on the handrail of the staircase to the second-floor balcony and scrambled to safety. Then she realized that her elderly next-door neighbor a woman she knew only by her first name, Helen and Helens son were trapped in their apartment.

She began screaming for help, and her upstairs neighbor, Dwayne Walker, quickly responded, jumping into the water.

Im 6-3 and the water was up to my neck, Walker recalled. He forced his way into Helens apartment while another man fought to hold the door open against the raging water to keep them from being trapped.

She was standing on a couch holding her cats, Walker said. Furniture and the refrigerator were floating around the room. Walker grabbed Helen, carrying her and her cats to safety.

Another man picked up Helens son and moved toward the door only to find his escape blocked by the floating debris.

He handed me her son and I carried him out. Then I went back and moved some of the furniture out of the way so the other guy could get out, Walker said.

Peering into the dark water from the balcony above, Walkers wife, Claudine who is five months pregnant was terrified.

I was just thinking I want him to live to see his unborn child, she recalled.

Only when the men emerged up the staircase did Claudine feel herself breathing again.

The Bergen County Community Action Partnership in Hackensack is coordinating a new statewide fund geared to address those needs among low-income victims of the storm. The Sandy Aftermath Fund for Economic Recovery or SAFER is being pulled together by Community Action programs around the country.

The fund got off the ground with an initial grant from the investment bank Goldman Sachs and has raised $135,000. The 1st Bergen Federal Credit Union, an arm of Bergen County CAP, has committed an additional $150,000 for no-interest loans. Bergen County CAP Executive Director Robert F. Halsch Jr. said he hopes to raise at least $1 million.

We think theres going to be an awful lot of circumstances where the existing relief and recovery system does not trickle down to low-income people, Halsch said. A lot of them dont own their own homes. Many cant afford the cost of comprehensive car insurance coverage, so they wont be covered for the loss of their vehicles.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency will provide some grants to compensate renters for the loss of personal property and even short-term rent subsidies, but it wont cover security deposits.

Some FEMA funds will be available, but its unclear how much and how fast, Halsch said. Our priority will be to move money quickly and fill the gaps.

Finding funds to pay for apartment security deposits is likely to be one of those gaps. A lot of people lost their deposits, and they just dont have the money to come up with another two months rent in advance, he noted.

Thats what Grant and the Walkers say happened to them after municipal officials ruled the building was no longer habitable.

The Hudson Street tenants said they havent gotten their security deposits back and dont have the cash for deposits on new apartments.

We found an apartment in Hackensack wed like to move into, but we dont have the money for another security deposit, Claudine Walker said, adding that the couple is living temporarily at her sisters home in Teaneck.

Getting moved into a new home is especially critical because of medical complications that have cropped up with her pregnancy, she added.

I most likely wont be able to work after I see the doctor on Nov. 26, because I will need to be on complete bed rest, said Walker, who works as a computer technician at Pascack Hills High School in Montvale.

To complicate matters further, her husband, a part-time dietary aide at Hackensack University Medical Center and a student at Bergen Community College, recently enlisted in the Navy.

Ill be gone in a few months, Dwayne Walker said. So you can see the urgency to get her stable.

Because their apartment was on the second floor, the Walkers were at least able to salvage their possessions. And while their cars were wrecked by the flood, they had insurance to cover the damage.

That wasnt the case for Grant.

I lost everything, said the 30-year-old nursing student at the HoHoKus Hackensack School of Business and Medical Sciences. I have no clothes, no furniture. Fortunately my school gave me a new set of textbooks.

Her car was wrecked and her insurance wont pay to fix it which makes commuting to school and her weekend job as a home care aide a challenge.

Im staying on a couch with friends in New York, Grant added, choking back tears. Im asking people for rides, trying to figure out how Im going to get back and forth to Hackensack.

The Walkers have already applied for a SAFER grant. Their former downstairs neighbor said she was about to do so.

Im going to call them as soon as I hang up the phone with you, Grant said.

Email: lipman@northjersey.com
« Last Edit: November 19, 2012, 09:18:52 AM by Editor »

Offline Editor

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Re: Hurricane Sandy
« Reply #22 on: November 27, 2012, 08:23:21 PM »
Flooded Hackensack residents can't return until January
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 8:41 AM
BY  HANNAN ADELY
STAFF WRITER
The Record

HACKENSACK A month after superstorm Sandy sent water gushing onto streets near the Hackensack River, some city residents remain displaced from their homes and could be locked out until 2013.

Sixteen basement apartments at 340 Hudson St. were inundated, destroying nearly everything inside. Property manager Smajo Adilovic said he expected renovations to be done around Jan. 1 and to cost about $400,000.

"The water was about 5 feet deep," Adilovic said. "Every day we're working to put people back."

On Monday, the basement level looked like a construction site. Flooring and Sheetrock had been stripped, exposing the concrete floor and wood beams. Debris, furniture and other furnishings were gone, and machines were running to dry the air.

Still, there was good news. Tenants in the 24 other units in the apartment complex got city approval on Monday to move back in, said Joseph Mellone, who heads the city's Building Department.

"They're going back in today," Mellone said. "The boiler was inspected today, and electric was on last Monday. They have heat and electricity and hot water."

Adilovic said the property owner, Albarelli Hackensack Associates, had to replace the electrical system, boiler and hot water heater. He said the company, which is looking to retain tenants, is offering to pay premiums for their flood insurance on policies up to $30,000 coverage.

A few tenants moved in days earlier, including one second-floor tenant who lugged groceries up the stairs on Monday. The woman said she had been sleeping on a friend's couch in Englewood and chipping in for expenses there even though she didn't have much money.

"It's been hell," she said. She declined to give her name because she wasn't supposed to be living there until Monday, after the inspections were completed.

She was partly relieved to be back home but also worried about potential for flooding in the future. "I don't know what's going to happen," she said. "There could be another storm."

The basement apartments also flooded during Hurricane Irene last year, and it took about two months to complete those repairs, Adilovic said. He said that was the first flood in the apartment complex since it opened in 1974.

"We are hoping this won't happen again, but with Mother Nature, who knows?" he said.

The Building Department also reported problems in other nearby buildings. Mellone said 161, 163, 167 and 169 Hudson St., and 166 Washington Ave., haven't passed inspection, and that tenants should stay away until they do. The problems affect about 50 residents, he said, adding that there could be more buildings with unsafe conditions in the city.

When flooding dries out, electrical systems need to be checked for fire hazards, Mellone said. He urged residents to report problems if they see a water line on walls above electric panels. Residents are sometimes reluctant to call because they don't want to relocate, but Mellone said it was a matter of safety.

"They're risking their lives by not calling," he said.

Email: adely@northjersey.com

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Re: Hurricane Sandy
« Reply #23 on: December 07, 2012, 11:15:45 AM »

Hackensack eyes storage area for new emergency, training center

Friday, December 7, 2012
BY  HANNAN ADELY
STAFF WRITER
The Record

HACKENSACK City officials want to convert a storage area above the civic center on State Street into a new emergency operations and training center, which officials say is needed due to a space crunch.

But first, the city needs to find an additional $350,000 to $400,000 to pay for the estimated $1.5 million project, after bids came in higher than expected, said City Manager Stephen Lo Iacono. He said he'll ask the City Council to approve a bond to cover the cost.

Officials say they need a more modern and efficient system for responding to emergencies in a city with flood-prone streets along the Hackensack River vulnerabilities that were on full display during superstorm Sandy.

"We have a major issue with winter storms and spring flooding, and documenting damage is really critical," said Hackensack Fire Chief Thomas Freeman. "That starts right here."

The plan calls for converting the 3,700-square-foot space into a center with a main operations room, meeting rooms, bathrooms, a break room, and a backup communications room. The center will double as a training facility for police, fire and public works employees.

The city received 13 bids for the project, Lo Iacono said the lowest for about $1.5 million.

The city has already lined up $1.15 million in for the project. That includes a $300,000 Homeland Security grant, $504,000 taken from a larger Hackensack University Medical Center donation, and $344,000 that was set aside years ago for an emergency operations center, but never used.

Officials previously wanted to build a police training and emergency service center in Johnson Park, but the plan was criticized by residents because it would lie in a flood-prone area. There were also questions over the proper use of public parkland and whether the center was really needed.

Emergency responders now meet in the front office of fire headquarters to respond to disasters. There, they coordinate rescues, communicate with outside agencies and utility companies, and map out problem areas. But officials say it is cramped and tough to carry out basic tasks like conference calls and group meetings.

During Sandy, staff from departments including community affairs, human services, public works, health, police and fire vied for space around tables and desks. When church leaders came in to offer help and services, they had to meet with officials in the hallway and outside due to lack of space.

Fire Capt. John Niland, the city's emergency management coordinator, said he expected the new center would have smartboards and computer programs to give responders a more complete and accurate picture during crisis.

The emergency operations center is activated, on average, about four to six days a year, Freeman said. During Sandy, it operated for 10 days.

Lo Iacono said he expects to present a bond measure to the council in January.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2012, 11:49:55 PM by Editor »

Offline Editor

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Re: Hurricane Sandy
« Reply #24 on: December 19, 2012, 11:51:20 PM »
N.J. cites more businesses in post-Sandy price gouging lawsuits
Wednesday, December 19, 2012    Last updated: Wednesday December 19, 2012, 7:25 PM
BY  HARVY LIPMAN
STAFF WRITER
The Record

Six more businesses, including a Hackensack gas station, face lawsuits brought by the state attorney general alleging price gouging in the wake of superstorm Sandy.

The suits filed this week bring to 24 the total number of companies cited by the state since the storm slammed into New Jersey.

There is no excuse, legally or morally, for businesses trying to gouge consumers in the aftermath of a widespread disaster, and we are holding them accountable, Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa said in a statement announcing the new round of legal actions.

The latest cases allege that five hotels across the state raised their prices by anywhere from 58 to 204 percent in the days following the storm. The state also has charged Ali Syed Gas, which operates a Gulf station at 141 Johnson Ave. in Hackensack, with bumping up the price of regular gasoline by nearly 18 percent.

Under state law, businesses are forbidden to raise their prices by more than 10 percent during a declared state of emergency, except to cover any additional costs they might face in obtaining supplies.

The attorney generals Division of Consumer Affairs has now brought action against 13 hotel companies and 11 gas stations for allegedly violating the anti-gouging law.

Some of the hotel companies have complained that the state is not taking into account important extenuating factors that led to the price hikes. Attorneys for two of them noted that in many cases, entire families were renting rooms designed for two people, and the hotels faced large increases in the costs of providing them with food, toiletries and linens. They also argue that the pre-storm room rates the state is using for comparison often were discounted rates offered to corporate clients which makes the increase in charges after the storm seem much higher than it actually is.

Division spokesman Jeff Lamm said that while discussions between the state and defense lawyers have been ongoing, no settlement agreements or new court dates have been set in any of the cases.

The businesses face fines of up to $10,000 for each initial instance of price gouging and up to $20,000 for each additional time they overcharged a customer. The state is also seeking restitution for consumers.

Offline hackensack_newbie

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Re: Hurricane Sandy
« Reply #25 on: December 21, 2012, 10:16:16 AM »
I remember going to that gas station the day Sandy first hit. I felt like I was being gouged, but I wasn't quite sure. I guess this confirms it...

Offline BLeafe

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Re: Hurricane Sandy/Before and After
« Reply #26 on: December 23, 2012, 01:30:32 AM »
The only noticeable change - other than the loss of foliage - is a different sign above Geri's Lunch. However, I think that sign for webuyuglyhouses.com was up there before (and I've never seen ads repeated there), so maybe a couple of newer signs blew off to re-reveal this one.


I think I was right. Yesterday's winds got ahold of that sign and it went from ugly houses to Ugg boots, which was the previous ad. UglyHouses flapped around like crazy all day, but it's still there.

The next really windy day will probably deposit it under the Anderson St bridge.
« Last Edit: December 23, 2012, 01:32:26 AM by BLeafe »
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Offline BLeafe

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Re: Hurricane Sandy
« Reply #27 on: December 29, 2012, 01:04:56 AM »
A week later, UglyHomes is hanging by a thread.

The first picture shows it four days ago and the second one is from yesterday. I give it until Sunday to drop.

I wonder what ad comes after UGG boots and UglyHomes.............ugly sticks?


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Offline BLeafe

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Re: Hurricane Sandy
« Reply #28 on: December 31, 2012, 04:25:04 PM »
I give it until Sunday to drop.

Even after yesterday's 40mph winds, it's STILL hanging on (maybe we should call it "Sloopy"). Pretty resilient - just like the residents of New Jersey after Sandy.

Unfortunately, it's also pretty damn ugly - just like the ugly homes it advertised - so I hope a replacement is coming soon.

Meanwhile..................HAPPY NEW YEAR!!
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Offline regina

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Re: Hurricane Sandy
« Reply #29 on: January 01, 2013, 10:08:48 AM »
I see our Building Department/Property Maintenance is right on top of that situation with the billboard. Has anyone reported it?