Letter: McGrath Is Leader We Need To Face Verona’s Environmental Challenges

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To the Editor:

I’ll be voting for Christine McGrath for Verona Town Council on May 9th for many reasons, but particularly because of her environmental awareness and activism. I’m an architect and have been working in the realm of green architecture my entire career. As a longtime member of Sustainable Verona, I’ve been thrilled to see Christine work as an active member of our organization, helping us to operate more effectively and in a coordinated fashion with the Town Council, Environmental Commission and other groups. Christine’s record has earned her a coveted endorsement from the nonpartisan New Jersey League of Conservation Voters.

What Verona does as a town has an environmental impact on our residents, our county, our state, all the way up to our world – it is all connected. Christine understands this. She knows that nuisance flooding is occurring in more households and that our trees can be part of the solution. Tree roots soak up water, fewer trees, more flooding. Trees also provide shade and reduce the heat island effect and the need for cooling. Christine continues to push the importance of shade trees and serves as the Council liaison on the Shade Tree Commission. After some Verona residents and businesses had devastating flooding from Hurricane Ida, Christine championed creating a joint flood control board with Cedar Grove, a Peckman River bank stabilization project for 2023, and drainage improvements off of the Montclair Golf course.

Christine also voted for the purchase of 25 acres of undeveloped land near Commerce Court and Mt. Prospect, which will now be preserved as open space. This land represents over 50% of the undeveloped land that was privately held in Verona, and on which the developer wanted to build hundreds of townhouses.

Christine has shown great leadership and understanding on environmental issues and she knows there’s much more to be done. I look forward to her continued dedication and savvy in helping Verona on its path to sustainability.

Christine Liaukus
Sustainable Verona member
Verona

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