Morris County folk tend to be very proud, if not downright cocky, over where they live.
At Friday night’s freeholder reorganization meeting, newly-elected board member Stephen Shaw said his father once told him that living in Morris County was like “being on vacation 365 days a year.”
That was a few minutes after John Krickus, who was beginning his second stint on the board, referenced former late night TV show host Craig Ferguson’s standard line about it being a great day in America.
“It’s an even better day if you are in Morris County,” Krickus said, using that as a prelude to rattling off many of the county’s attributes.
This view of Route 10 as a highway through heaven is political rhetoric to be sure, but there is also some truth here.
There are a lot of good things about Morris County. It’s a well-educated, affluent place with a low crime rate and a great park system. Combined with state and federal parkland, spending time in the woods hiking, biking or whatever is easy to do no matter where in the county you live. And don’t forget geography. Manhattan is just a train ride away.
The county also is a mixture of vibrant downtowns – Morristown, Denville, Chatham -and as Krickus said, “rural vistas.” And thanks to the state farmland preservation program, it still has some real, live
Some of this – like geography – is coincidental. But some of it did not just happen.
Freeholder boards a few generations back deserve credit for having the vision to look further down the road than the next primary. It was these leaders who created a community college, a nursing home, a
vo-tech high school and a county park system, among other attributes.
There is some relevance here. The freeholders are now looking at maybe building a new courthouse in Morristown. A meeting on the idea is set for Wednesday, Jan. 9. Courthouses don’t come cheap, so this is bound to split the board among those who want to press ahead with the future in mind and those content with the status quo.
The debate may turn out to be nobody’s idea of a vacation.