Let there be lights for the Hawks, council says
HAMMONTON - Hammonton Town Council approved a lease that will allow the Hammonton Hawks to play at William T. Capella Field.
The approval of the lease came at the town’s monthly meeting on Aug. 15 at Hammonton Town Hall. It was announced at the meeting that the Board of Education also approved the lease. The town’s commitment was contingent on an amendment — concerning a potential buyout of the lights — OK’d by all parties.
In the shared service agreement with the school board, the town agreed to install lights in the parking areas as well as the field, which will cost the town about $250,000.
“We are installing the lights at the school for no charge,” Hammonton Mayor Steve DiDonato said. “The school can use it for any of their activities. The kids can use the lights at the school level and at the Hawks level. The amendment is if the Hawks leave or are asked to leave we have to sit down and talk about the lights. We have to have a buyout agreement for the remainder of the lights. If they stay eight or 10 years, I’m not worried about it, but if it’s one year, then we have to talk.”
Council also heard from resident Linda Esposito of Central Avenue about what she believes is a dangerous street and intersection. She asked town council to add a four-way stop at Central and Grape streets in order to slow vehicles down.
Esposito’s request came less than a week after a young boy on a bike was hit by a vehicle. The boy had to be transported to Cooper University Hospital, according to published reports.
“There have been far too many accidents at the corner of Central and Grape Street,” Esposito said to council members. “So I feel compelled to be here this evening to plead to council, to Atlantic County or whoever is responsible, please install a four-way stop at this intersection where I live.
“As recently as last Wednesday (Aug. 10) another horrifying accident (happened) between a motorist and a young man on a bicycle. He was one of three people struck by a vehicle — one that resulted in a fatality. There also have been numerous minor traffic accidents or fender-benders, if you will. Police records will collaborate that fact.”
DiDonato said that council will have the police department look into the amount of accidents on the street.
“We will talk with (police Chief Robert Jones), we will discuss it with the chief and he will have to ultimately make a recommendation to council,” DiDonato explained. “Then we will take a vote on the chief’s recommendation.”
Jones was at the meeting to promote several members of the police force. Christopher Clements, Richard Jones and Mark Santora were promoted from patrolman to corporal while Sean Grasso was promoted to the rank of sergeant. Joseph Maimone was sworn in as a lieutenant and Mark Fiorentino as a captain.
Town Council also:
• Agreed to reject the dismissal of an unnamed volunteer firefighter from Hammonton Independent Fire Company No. 2 on the advice of Solicitor Michael Malinsky.
• Honored the request of the Rotary Club and Kiwanis Club to have beer at a celebration at Hammonton Lake Park on Oct. 2 as long as proper precaution is taken, including insurance.
• Approved Halloween night from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Oct. 31.
The next Town Council meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Sept. 26 at Town Hall.