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Orange Housing Authority and Big Brothers, Big Sisters Fill Generation Gap at Earth Day Event

000 bbbsThe Orange Housing Authority (OHA) and Big Brothers, Big Sisters (BBBS) of Essex, Hudson and Union Counties partnered on April 20, to celebrate the 45th anniversary of Earth Day at the Washington Manor public housing complex in Orange.

BBBS mentees and seniors shared their love for the environment through a variety of activities. The two groups organized an "Earth Day Celebration" to plant and paint recyclable flower pots, in addition to learning how they can create sustainable initiatives for future generations.

"This is my first time I worked with the elderly at a senior housing complex," said BBBS mentee, Daja, 16 "It's been a rewarding experience to help those who have done so much for our community over the years."

"It's imperative for our mentees to work with people of all ages," said Michele Williers, Chief Operations Officer for BBBS. "It is opportunities such as these that help bridge the gap between young and old. It builds trust and understanding between two generations that do not often interact."

Earlier this year, OHA promised to expand its role to increase services to the community at-large. By doing so, the authority has partnered with a series of community organizations, such as County of Essex, BBBS and the Orange Public School District.

"Earth Day is one of many informative programs at OHA that we can use to not only appreciate a healthy community, but to remind us of the importance of preserving it for our future through positive actions," said OHA Executive Director Walter D. McNeil, Jr., PhD.

OHA is committed to improving the community by incorporating cultural and educational activities for the public. For example, the agency is hosting a golf tournament September 21 to enhance their ability to help youth within the OHA community.

For more information on upcoming events, please visit the Orange Housing Authority's website at www.haconj.org.

Orange Housing Authority and Big Brothers, Big Sisters Fill Generation Gap at Earth Day Event

000 bbbsThe Orange Housing Authority (OHA) and Big Brothers, Big Sisters (BBBS) of Essex, Hudson and Union Counties partnered on April 20, to celebrate the 45th anniversary of Earth Day at the Washington Manor public housing complex in Orange.

BBBS mentees and seniors shared their love for the environment through a variety of activities. The two groups organized an "Earth Day Celebration" to plant and paint recyclable flower pots, in addition to learning how they can create sustainable initiatives for future generations.

"This is my first time I worked with the elderly at a senior housing complex," said BBBS mentee, Daja, 16 "It's been a rewarding experience to help those who have done so much for our community over the years."

"It's imperative for our mentees to work with people of all ages," said Michele Williers, Chief Operations Officer for BBBS. "It is opportunities such as these that help bridge the gap between young and old. It builds trust and understanding between two generations that do not often interact."

Earlier this year, OHA promised to expand its role to increase services to the community at-large. By doing so, the authority has partnered with a series of community organizations, such as County of Essex, BBBS and the Orange Public School District.

"Earth Day is one of many informative programs at OHA that we can use to not only appreciate a healthy community, but to remind us of the importance of preserving it for our future through positive actions," said OHA Executive Director Walter D. McNeil, Jr., PhD.

OHA is committed to improving the community by incorporating cultural and educational activities for the public. For example, the agency is hosting a golf tournament September 21 to enhance their ability to help youth within the OHA community.

For more information on upcoming events, please visit the Orange Housing Authority's website at www.haconj.org.

Orange Teacher Suspended Over Students' "Get Well" Notes to Convicted Felon

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Some Third Grade students came back from their spring break to find a substitute teacher behind Marylin Zuniga's desk here at the Forest Street Elementary School April 13.

Zuniga, said Orange Superintendent of Schools Ronald Lee April 9, has been suspended indefinitely with pay. When, or if, she will return to her classroom depends on an Orange Board of Education decision at a to-be-announced upcoming meeting.

 

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New Jersey Public Housing Authorities Convene to Discuss New Reporting and Compliance Measures Implemented by U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

In response to a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) planning report issued in July 2014, public housing authorities are gearing up for proposed changes.

In New Jersey, a small but agile agency has taken a proactive approach on financial responsibility by hosting its own financial discussion on HUD's new Section 8 rules. The purpose of the meeting was to help fortify the understanding of critical issues revolving public housing agencies in order to maximize revenue for programming.

The Housing Authority for the City of Orange (HACO) accommodated more than a dozen public housing officials at their Walter G. Alexander Complex on Monday, April 13 to prepare for the changes.

Public housing authorities from across New Jersey participated in the event, including Bayonne, Clementon, Irvington, Paterson, Pleasantville, Union County, West Orange and Woodbridge.

Brian D. Alten, Director of BDO PHA Finance, provided clarity and tips, as well as education on the new regulatory changes for Housing Choice Vouchers, which allow low-income families to choose their own affordable privately-owned rental housing.

Some additional topics included eligible and ineligible uses for Unrestricted Net Position (UNP) and tools to understand the new Section 8 rules and regulations.

OHA is a nimble agency for a two-mile city of 30,000 residents. OHA offers 250 residences, 642 Section 8 vouchers, 114 tax credit units and is constructing 42 more housing units. The City of Orange Housing Authority (OHA) embraces a progressive mission beyond offering safe and affordable housing to families and seniors.

To learn more, visit www.haconj.org

Authorities Investigating Possible Carbon Monoxide Deaths

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Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn A. Murray announced that the Essex County Prosecutor's Office is investigating two possible carbon monoxide deaths.
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