>The following letter appears in this weeks edition of the Independent. The letter reflects fairly well the frustration that residents felt and may still feel about the clean-up efforts after last weeks massive blizzard that struck the area:
In Middletown, our recent snowstorm was not only a climatic event; it was catastrophic to its citizens. From its inception, this storm paralyzed transportation on Middletown’s roads. The storm started with intensity at approximately 10 a.m. on Sunday; it roared into Monday and stopped at approximately 4 a.m. S ervices in the form of plowing appeared to be nonexistent not only during the storm but after the storm.
On Monday morning, the concept of plowing turned out to be a real mystery. With the exception of the Monmouth County roads, the roads in Middletown were not really plowed. There didn’t even seem to be an attempt to plow a single lane down the middle of the road. I always thought this was done to facilitate the movement of police, ambulance and fire vehicles. I was very concerned; I therefore called the offices of both Public Works and the business administrator. The phones of both these departments were not manned. The phone at public works had a pre-recorded message, which stated that the individual had just stepped away from her desk and I should leave a message. I called the police department and there was an immediate response from a live person. The individual said that they didn’t have anything to do with the roads.
I began to think and I reached back into my memory. I began to recollect that under our form of government it is the business administrator who is responsible for the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Middletown. I made another call to the business administrator’s office, and once again I experienced an unmanned phone. I didn’t think that it would be appropriate to give a civics lesson to a message recorder.
Driving on Middletown’s roads has been a real challenge. It may be related to shake, rattle and maybe roll.
Middletown needs to take lessons from the Monmouth County Road Department. The work done by this department can be described as nothing less than excellent.
Middletown needs to learn how to plan, manage, deploy, schedule and implement the skills of its workers. They are a great group of guys. They should have the opportunity to do a great job.
P.S. I can’t wait for the next snowstorm. I’m thinking about purchasing a snowmobile.
Belford section of