Fulop Makes His Move

BOONTON – Steve Fulop says that when he became mayor of Jersey City, a seasoned Hudson County pol was quick with advice:

“Don’t do anything.”

The point of that cynical observation was that any type of bold action was bound to annoy someone. However, doing nothing would maintain a status quo and create a smooth path to reelection.

Fulop says he ignored the advice.

And on Tuesday afternoon, that’s what brought the mayor – and 2025 gubernatorial candidate – about 35 miles west to Morris County where the city has owned and operated a reservoir for more than 100 years.

Variously called the Jersey City, Boonton or Parsippany reservoir, the body of water is certainly well-known. Thousands of drivers pass it daily on Route 46 and just so no one forgets, the name of the city’s mayor is posted in large letters.

There is rich history here.

In need of fresh water in the late 1890’s, the city purchased up land in what is now called Old Boonton, razed the structures and eventually created a reservoir by building a large dam on the Rockaway River. It is now the main water source for Jersey City, the second largest city in the state.

Morris County has a very active park commission and more than 20 years ago, a proposal was made to develop a recreational trail around the reservoir – a 7.7 mile loop.

Dick Seabury, a long-time park commission member, says he recalls talking about the idea with Mayor Bret Schundler. That was in the 1990s.

Security concerns about public water supply following the 9/11 attacks put the plan on hold, but it eventually was rekindled.

And that’s why the mayor and an array of  Morris County officials and open space proponents gathered on the banks of the reservoir on a beautiful spring afternoon – the trail is finally going to happen and it’s time to celebrate.

Let’s get back to the advice Fulop got about doing nothing. Clearly, that would have meant leaving the reservoir as is.

But the mayor said he liked the idea and sold it to his colleagues in Jersey City. It was not easy, given the fact some wondered how a trail in Morris County would benefit the city.

In the end, the city council went along, noting the public benefit of a wooded trail in a very nice setting.

A few speakers hailed the idea of “urban and rural communities working together.”

Indeed.

This is also a bipartisan endeavor between Democratic Jersey City and Republican Morris County.

Speaking of politics, Fulop, as stated, is a Democratic candidate for governor.

Rep. Mikie Sherrill, whose 11th District includes the reservoir, is also a likely candidate.

Sherrill was in Washington for Tuesday’s big to-do, but she still had a presence. Sherrill secured $600,000 in federal money to help develop the trail.

Also on hand was Morris County Sheriff James Gannon, whose office will help provide trail security.

Gannon grew up in Boonton and like many area natives, recalls swimming in the reservoir.

That was illegal, but one presumes that in Gannon’s case, the statute of limitations has expired.

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5 responses to “Fulop Makes His Move”

  1. Today,the 3rdCircuitCourt of Appeals upheld the Distruct Court Judge”s ruling regarding the County Line.

    The expert witness for the defense, Royal Printing ( (father) played played basketball at Saint Johns class1962. Bergen County Head of the Democratic Party Mayor Gerald Calabrese played basketball at Saint Johns class 1947.

    Any friend of Mayor Gerald Calabrese got the job and the rest got ballot Siberia.

    The ball is now in the hands of the State Legislature

  2. The 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the District Court ruling.

    The only expert witness for the defense was the printing company in West New York ,NJ .who coincidently is only 20 blocks from Boro Hall where Mayor. Gerald Calabrese called all the shots.

    Both the founder of the printer of ballots and Mayor Gerald Calabrese played basketball at Saint Johns.

    The ball is now the State Legislature and the next Governors hands.

  3. It shows Steve Fulop is his own man with great ideas for New Jersey. As Mayor of Jersey City our City is the number one in the State. It shows that he is the right person to be our governor and make New Jersey the number one state of America.

  4. The Democratic Candidates for Governor may present a very competitive primary, but those who have committed to wanting to run, present a better future for New Jersey.

  5. The Democratic Candidates for Governor may present a very competitive primary, but those who have committed to wanting to run, present a better future for New Jersey.

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