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Burglaries and Accidents Top Local News

A weekly roundup of top local news stories on Verona-Cedar Grove Patch.

A rental car used in a suspected burglary led police on a high-speed chase through Cedar Grove Tuesday night, Cedar Grove police said.

Law-enforcement officials contacted OnStar on Wednesday morning and were told the car was found abandoned near the George Washington Bridge in New York City. The vehicle was not reported stolen at the time of the burglary.

Police Chief Richard Vanderstreet said the incident began after an officer noticed the unoccupied Buick LaCross rental car parked on Eileen Drive around 6 p.m. The officer returned to the car a short while later and said he saw three people inside.

A 23-year-old Verona man went through a stop sign Wednesday morning at the intersection of Ridge Road and Reservoir Drive and struck an occupied parked car, injuring a woman, police said.

Michael A. Collins was driving west on Reservoir Drive, police said, when he passed a stop sign at the intersection of Ridge Road and Reservoir Drive at 11:47 a.m. and struck a car travelling southbound on Ridge Road.

An early morning crash Monday left a woman injured and damaged a utility pole on Mount Prospect Avenue (Route 23) in Verona, police said.

Verona Police Chief Douglas Huber said the unidentified woman was travelling south on Mount Pleasant Avenue at approximately 3 a.m. when she hit the electric pole, splitting it in half and knocking wires down before the vehicle flipped.

Cedar Grove Moves Ahead on Panther Park

The Cedar Grove Township Council unanimously agreed to move ahead with the design phase for a redeveloped multipurpose sports field during its Monday night meeting.

The council approved plans to award money for Panther Park — a lighted football, soccer and lacrosse field with stands, a walking and running track and concession stands and bathrooms, according to Cedar Grove Councilman Joseph Chiusolo.

Verona Council Discusses Potential Streets for Grant Program

At the Verona Township Council meeting Monday night, the council discussed possible road projects it should submit for its yearly Community Development Block Grant.

The grants provide the township with federal money for various street improvements.

However, Congress has dramatically cut funding for the program and made qualifying criteria more difficult over the years, said Verona Township Engineer Jim Helb.

Verona Schools Awarded AP District Honor Roll

The Verona School District was named one of of 34 New Jersey School districts and 539 schools across the nation and Canada to the Third Annual District Honor Roll.

The award, presented by the College Board, is given to schools for simultaneously increasing access to Advanced Placement courses while also increasing the percentage of students earning scores of 3 or higher on AP Exams.

Black Friday Remains Slow on Bloomfield Ave

As Black Friday shoppers mob the malls, local businesses are seeing one seriously slow day.

Shoppers are enthusiastic while business owners remain hopeful that Small Business Saturday will make up for Black Friday.

“Everyone is going to the malls which hurts the town a little bit,” said Carl Nozdrovicky, owner of Caldwell Jewelers on Bloomfield Ave. “There aren't as many retail shops as there used to be in Caldwell but now people are more aware of Small Business Saturday.”

Some loyal shoppers remained on Bloomfield Avenue Friday morning to get a head start on their holiday shopping.

The Cedar Grove Police Department penned a letter to residents reminding them to be on the lookout for suspicious activity during the holiday season.

The letter was distributed to residents on the NIXLE alert system:

"With the arrival of the winter months and early sunsets, we would like to remind our residents to be on the alert for suspicious activity, since burglars often take advantage of the cover of darkness.

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