Category Archives: General

Hudson County Community College Vice Chair Bakari G. Lee Named Recipient of ACCT 2023 Northeast Regional Trustee Leadership Award

 Bakari G. Lee, Esq., Vice Chair of Hudson County Community College’s Board of Trustees, is the recipient of the Association of Community College Trustees Northeast Regional Trustee Leadership Award.

Vice Chair Lee is the sole nominee from the Northeastern United States for
ACCT’s prestigious M. Dale Ensign National Trustee Leadership Award. 

August 23, 2023, Jersey City, NJ – For more than 120 years, America’s community colleges have played a vital role in transforming lives by creating pathways to economic opportunity and financial security. Today, community colleges face myriad challenges such as funding issues, keeping apace of rapidly changing technologies, and, most importantly, developing the means to assist students in continuing and completing their studies. Community college trustees work with college administrators and staff, local and national government entities, and area industries to meet these challenges, and to ensure opportunities abound for those who wish to successfully pursue a community college education.

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Picas Pics -Restaurant Reviews by Mark Pica now in the River View Observer

The River View Observer is proud to welcome Mark Pica and his insightful food column Picas Pics.

Mark Pica is no stranger to Hudson County, Mark hails from Jersey City, and ran a successful automotive business; Pica’s Automotive for years in Jersey City Heights, Mark is also no stranger to the restaurant business having run a successful restaurant in Newport, Jersey City

From time to time Mark will open our eyes and our palettes to some new and old-time favorite restaurants in and out of Hudson County.

For Picas Pics’ first column in the River View Observer, Mark has ventured outside Hudson County and chose Rum Runners in Seabright New Jersey.


“Picas Pics”

Pregaming for this summer’s festivities I decided to venture off to Monmouth County for an early dinner on a Beautiful Sunday afternoon. As most of you know, there are plenty of Amazing Restaurants there, but today, with summer coming, I had to be on the water.

I’ve heard many good things about The Rum Runner Restaurant in Sea Bright NJ since they did its makeover in I believe 2016, and decided to give it a shot today.

The second you walk through their glass doors into the vestibule you know it’s gonna be nice. Up a small flight of steps, through another set of glass doors, and then WOW. Spectacular Views of the Shrewsbury River, through the large windows that go along the entire length of the dining room floor. A perfect amount of decorative wood trim, elegant lighting throughout, their chic tables, and very comfortable cushioned chairs all together equaled a Major Wow! Folks, there isn’t a bad seat in the house. No matter where you sit in this restaurant, you have a Breathtaking View.

It’s always pretty cool when you’re digging how astonishing a restaurant’s decor can be, but what about the food? Well, here we go baby, right to my main. I went with their Pistachio “Dijon Crusted” Baby Lamb Chops, they were so tender and tasty, it could be the best I ever had. The Pistachio and Dijon Combo gave it a taste like never before. They were served over a Hearty Butternut Squash Risotto, tiny chunks of carrots in a black plum reduction, slightly trimmed with raspberry syrup, and guess what folks, OOOFFFHHHAAAAA Baby, Absolutely Fabulous!!!

We started off with their Delicious Honey Drizzle, Crushed Pistachio, and Goat Cheese Fritters that were “Off the Charts”!!

Being a finer restaurant, after dinner they bring over a dessert tray with several astounding choices. We chose their Lightly Crunched Caramel Cake with Fresh Whipped Cream, topped with Caramel Glaze that all resulted in a pure Caramel Bliss.

“Picas Pics” Gives this Outstanding Elegant Restaurant, The Rum Runner, Sea Bright N.J. the Max, 5 Thumbs Up! A Must Try!

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Hudson County’s Roger Muller -Taking The Bite Out Of Lionfish

Roger Muller Lionfish Hunter
Roger Muller

By Scott Murphy

How a group of passionate divers are trying to create essential awareness about a growing ocean threat…

By day, Roger J. Muller Jr. can usually be found overseeing Muller Insurance – his longstanding insurance agency in Hoboken, New Jersey. At night, friends often seek him out on the ice, where he can be spotted either captaining the Hoboken Rockets hockey team, or watching the New Jersey Devils pursue a hopeful Stanley Cup.

But every few months, as he stares at the exotic fish in his massive office tank, Muller gets the itch to go deep sea diving. “It’s like a mission,” he says. For the past 25 years, he has dived in places as varied as Cuba, Italy, Panama, Bonaire, Curacao, Jamaica, St. Croix, Grand Cayman Islands, Aruba, the Florida Panhandle, Rangiria, Mo’oria, Bora Bora, the South Pacific  and Hawaii. He’s accumulated some noteworthy stats and achievements during that time: over 2,500 dives and 132 major diving certificates. “I love it,” he says with a clear passion in his voice. “I started in 1998 in Aruba, and just kept going. I’ve gotten every certification from Open Water Diver to instructor.”

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Jersey City Awarded $8.1 Million for Traffic Safety Improvements at 33 Intersections along Summit Avenue  

Over $8.1 million in federal funds has been approved for safety improvements in Jersey City, specifically involving 33 intersections along Summit Avenue from Route 139 to Secaucus Road. 

The project, funded by the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA), will include upgraded traffic signals at 19 intersections, pedestrian signal upgrades, high-visibility crosswalks, curb extensions, and other improvements along the 1.5-mile corridor.  

The Summit Avenue project, which is one of 19 safety improvements totaling $188.3 million across the NJTPA region, was approved by the NJTPA Board of Trustees at its March 13, 2023, meeting.  Summit Avenue is identified on the High Injury Network in Jersey City’s Vision Zero Action Plan.   “Modernizing the intersections to be safer and operate more efficiently will build upon our broader Vision Zero efforts citywide, furthering our commitment to reach zero pedestrian and cyclist fatalities,” said Jersey City Mayor Steven M. Fulop, the City’s representative to the NJTPA Board.

 “With two nearby parks and several schools in the vicinity, these improvements are especially important to help keep residents of all ages safe.”   As has become the Fulop Administration’s standard policy, the project’s preliminary and final design phases will include multiple public engagement sessions to solicit community feedback.  The design phase is expected to begin later this year.  

The Local Safety Program funds high-impact, cost-effective solutions to reduce crashes and improve safety for all travelers. 

More information on the programs is available online at  Project factsheets are available at  

Funding approved for the programs doubled from the previous program cycle in 2020.  “The increases are the result of highly successful partnerships between the NJTPA and its member county and city governments to deliver vitally important projects on our local roads,” said Passaic County Commissioner John W. Bartlett, the current Chair of the NJTPA.  

“This federal support helps free up local dollars, state aid, and municipal aid for other priorities.”  

The NJTPA is the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for 13 northern New Jersey counties.  Under federal legislation, MPOs provide a forum where local officials, public transportation providers, and state agency representatives can come together and cooperatively plan to meet the region’s current and future transportation needs.  

It establishes the region’s eligibility to receive federal tax dollars for transportation projects.  

The NJTPA Board consists of one local elected official from each of the 13 counties in the region (Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren) and the cities of Newark and Jersey City. The Board also includes a Governor’s Representative, the Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Transportation, the President & CEO of NJ TRANSIT, the Chairman of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and a Citizens’ Representative appointed by the Governor.  

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