Cheers And Jeers: Thursday

To the Newton Volunteer First Aid and Rescue Squad, winner of the 2018 NJ Outstanding EMS Agency.

Recognized at the 2018 National Conference on EMS held recently in Atlantic City, the Newton squad was selected out of 17 nominees and was the first Sussex County agency to be nominated for, let alone win, either the Outstanding EMS Agency or Outstanding First Responder award.

Among the many successes and positive performance items listed in the squad's nomination are a turn around from a point of slow response times, poor response rates, and low membership to that of Sussex County's busiest and fastest EMS agency -- responding to 2,000 annual emergency calls, averaging a 96 percent response rate, and a 5.2-minute response time; a 50 percent membership increase and a 200 percent increase in its fleet (two ambulances in 2017, three ambulances, two buses, one SUV in 2018). The fleet incidentally was achieved through donations and made no impact on the Newton taxpayers.

Cheers also to Newton patrolmen Jose Morales and Russell Post who were presented the 2018 NJ Outstanding First Responder Award for their efforts at a January 2018 house fire in Newton.


To finally fall weather and all the festivals and events that go with the transitional season.

Weekends abound with fall family fun including apple and pumpkin picking, corn mazes, hayrides and a host of Halloween-inspired happenings.

As the temperatures slip, the area is suddenly faced with a possible first frost mid-week according to some longer range forecasts.

Though many likely won't welcome the thermometer possibly hitting the freezing mark on Wednesday or Thursday night, a cheer could be put up for the swat such an event will have on mosquito populations.


To positive negotiations that hopefully will lead to a successful event in Newton following next month's holiday parade.

The previously announced WizardCon, a follow-up to last year's well-attended Harry Potter-themed event, had been reported to be on shaky ground with the possibility of being canceled.

But town officials met with representatives of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northern New Jersey which is sponsoring the affair, scheduled to commence following the holiday parade on Nov. 24.

Jeers ...

To the couple who allegedly attempted to kill a 10-year-old dog in their care by taking it into the woods and shooting it with a high-powered BB gun.

Fortunately, after wounding the dog, they apparently had a change of heart and took it to a veterinarian in Flanders for treatment.

The couple, who first told the vet that a trespasser had shot their dog, have since been charged with second-degree possession of weapons for an unlawful purpose, third-degree unlawful possession of weapons, fourth-degree conspiracy to commit animal cruelty and a disorderly persons offense of animal cruelty.

This jeer is accompanied by a cheer as another veterinarian at the Flanders clinic ended up adopting the dog who is doing well and enjoying his new home which includes a role as mascot at the vet clinic where it is assured he will be in good care.

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