Monday, January 3, 2011

A Plainfield Citizen's Suggestions for Greater Efficiency and Effectiveness

Dear Friends,

Plainfield, Dec. 27, 2010, (source:
I recently received an email from a Plainfield citizen with suggestions for greater efficiency and effectiveness in the way the City responds to snow emergencies--plowing and removal. I am posting that email here in its entirety.

On Wed, Dec 29, 2010 at 7:34 PM:

1.      Mr. Mapp, this recent snowfall started me thinking of how we could respond better as a City to such a hazardous condition and with the most efficiency.  I think the following could be helpful:

2.      Fit several PMUA garbage trucks with plows.  They are out early each morning and could plow snow off to the side while making their regular rounds and when DPW comes in they can finish off what has been started by the PMUA.  Not in their contract? Well all things are negotiable when the economy is down and we are trying to save jobs.

3.      The patrol cars can be given a couple of bags of salt for icy intersections afterhours.  Since we work 24/7 there wouldn't be any overtime cost to the City.  We also have two pickup trucks that we use to plow our own lot, so we could keep sand, salt, etc in the back during winter season to help out with major ice conditions at hazardous intersections after hours.

4.      The Fire Department could keep salt and sand in their open pickup truck for emergency icy intersection conditions. 

5.      The last resort would be a call out to DPW on overtime, which would probably not be necessary if we set in motion the aforementioned plan.

I agree with this citizen that if the suggested plan (or one designed utilizing some of its components) were to be implemented, it could result in a significant dent in the City’s overtime budget for snow removal. The idea of attaching plows to the PMUA vehicles is one that has been previously mentioned; it is a shared service that can be easily implemented between the City and the PMUA. 

The other suggestions can be readily implemented as a directive from the City’s Director of Public Safety. This is one way that the City’s finest and bravest can contribute to the enhancement of public safety while at the same time reducing the operating cost of the DPW. Your suggestions and feedback would be greatly appreciated as well.

Best regards for 2011,




Anonymous said...

Dear Friend, The winds of change are blowing as we speak!

Bernice said...

I think one of the issues with snow is city vs. county roads. Could PMUA plow county roads without somebody bringing up liability issues? Stupid as it may seem, these "turf" issues are a stumbling block to a common-sense approach to many possible shared services.

Anonymous said...

You are a real piece of work Honorable Mr Mapp! And you do such a wonderful job of helping to cover up the crimes of your friends in the Third Ward!

Rob said...

Do what the cities in Upstate NY do.
1) Declare a snow emergency 24hrs after the snow fall has stopped.
2) At that exact point in time there is NO parking on the even side of ANY city street. If you are parked on an even side of the street your car is towed. PLAIN AND SIMPLE.
3) City plows all even sides of the streets to the curbs COMPLETELY in 24hrs.
4) At the 24hr mark there is NO PARKING on the ODD sides of the streets. If you are car is parked on an add number side it is towed. Plain and simple.
5) City goes through and cleans all streets on the odd side.
6) 48hrs after the snow storm has finished all city streets are cleaned and the snow emergency is lifted.

The "rocket science" that people seem to think areas that receive snow employ is actually quite elementary. Also...try salting and sanding the roads before the storm helps with clean up and safety in the end. No matter what anyone tells you, I was on the streets ( Central, Watchung and Park ) and they were NOT salted or sanded before the start of the blizzard.

Philip said...

So the PMUA will start doing plowing and the residents will get billed directly for a new component of "shared services"??? Isn't it bad enough that they collect more than $5,000,000 for garbage in public areas? Please stop looking or suggesting ways to have the PMUA take more of our money.

Adrian Mapp said...

Hello Philip:
I do believe that plows on the PMUA trucks would give us greater value for the shared service dollars we pay. I respect your right to disagree with me and with any other citizen.

Rob said...

and today ( Friday the 7th ) is a perfect example..again...days of warning about the snow storm, time predicted right on the nose...was their salt and sand on the roads in Plainfield this morning before it started ?? NOPE.
Rocket science hint from an Upstate NY resident on how to maintain roads in the winter......Make you job easier..salt and sand the roads BEFORE 1-3" of snow has been packed into a sheet of ice and the roads are hell.

Adrian Mapp said...

To Anon 7:54 am:
Please forward any information you have about criminal activity of my friends in the 3rd Ward to the UC Prosecutor, the State AG's office or to the US Attorney's office. You have a civic responsibility, as a citizen, to report crimes to the authorities.

Adrian Mapp said...

I like your suggestions

Anonymous said...

I dont think Rob has a clue of how to fight a storm, sorry a blizzard, both county and city roads were salted before and after the storm. Residents of Plainfield were able to get around after the blizzard,you saw the news there were a lot of towns where residents were stranded for days but not Plainfield residents,you should know... you drove around after the storm, just keep in mind it was a bad storm and the city received great services for the city of Plainfield's residents.

Philip said...

Mr. Mapp,

Plows would be good if the PMUA wasn't just a political patronage pit which drains money directly from property owners.

You couldn't possibly believe it costs $5 million + $1.2 million for the public garbage and now the bulky waste. Why wouldn't the council look to save the taxpayers over $4 million by putting these services out to bid? In addition, the sewer costs in this city are ridiculous. The average homeowner pays $300 more than those in Scotch Plains for sewer service. Disbanding the PMUA would return any revenue to the city while providing significant savings to the public. There is no reason that the PMUA needs 40+ people for 6,000 tons of garbage with a cost of $5 million.

On behalf of 47,000+ residents, thank you in advance for looking into the possibility of returning these services to the city.

Anonymous said...

How can the city go ahead and promoted 2 guys from captain to BC/DC in the fire department and at the same time laying off 2 firefighter.these 2 F.F make $50k a year while the 2 who just got promoted will be making $130k year.the 2 who just got promoted will be in the office, while the 2 who or to be layed off run into the burning building to save people lifes.

Adrian Mapp said...

As I was out of town, I kindly asked my friend to attach this blog post.