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Utility Infrastructure Upgrades in McKeon Bill Package

Legislation intended to strengthen safety in future disasters will be unveiled Tuesday in South Orange.

Assemblyman John F. McKeon (D-27th District) will join mayors from towns in the district at a news conference in South Orange Tuesday to announce a package of bills intended to improve infrastructure in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. 

The conference begins at 11 a.m. at the South Orange Department of Public Works (DPW) facility, 300 Walton Ave., according to a press release. 

South Orange Village President Alex Torpey, South Orange Department of Public Works Director Tom Michetti, Madison Mayor Robert H. Conley and Millburn Mayor Sandra Haimoff will attend, as will Assemb. Mila M. Jasey (D-Essex/Morris).

“While New Jersey was reeling from the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, the worst storm to batter the mid-Atlantic and ravage the East Coast in recent history, and which knocked out power from more than 8.5 million homes and businesses, many lessons were learned on how to improve safety in future disasters,” McKeon said in the release. “We were also made increasingly aware of the countless hidden dangers faced by our brave utility line personnel and first responders tasked with rescue and relief operations."

He continued, “As we worked collectively with area mayors, emergency management officials and representatives of utilities on joint efforts to assist storm ravaged constituents, we were able to identify and craft legislation to strengthen safety in utility infrastructure and mitigate future damage statewide. The bills we will unveil on Tuesday are also intended to minimize the danger to our brave utility line personnel and emergency first responders who perform the highest possible public service by putting themselves in harms way to save others.”

The 27th Legislative District includes the following municipalities: Caldwell, Chatham Township, East Hanover, Essex Fells, Florham Park, Livingston, Hanover, Harding, Madison, Maplewood, Millburn, Roseland, South Orange and West Orange.

Adam Kraemer December 10, 2012 at 11:54 AM
While improving infrastructure to mitigate flood and wind damage is a good thing I would like a price put on this legisilsation before the fact. Also since this is such an important thing to do I am hoping the prevailing wage in public construction rules can be suspended for this endevor so this can be done quickly and at a fiar price to the taxpayers.
joseph martino,p. December 11, 2012 at 04:31 PM
"i applaud our elected officials tuesday conference to propose a bill to improve infrastructure in our district. if as a nation we keep neglecting our infrastructure it will collectively cost our economy an even higher eventual price tag. "maintaining a modern infrastructure is the very lifeblood of a nations economy, as crucial as the arterial system is to life." - joseph p.martino

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