Local Beat for Friday, October 13, 2017

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October 13, 2017 Local Beat is the NJ News Commons’ weekly roundup of the best reporting by community news sources. ARMORED COMBAT LEAGUE TURNS BACK THE CLOCK, DIALS UP THE IMPACT The Armored Combat League (ACL) is a full-contact, fully-armored fighting league that began less than five years ago and has already attracted more than 400 members and attained international reach. Matt Skoufalos of NJ Pen says the upstart fighting sport pits would-be knights in real suits of armor against one another in melee combat. IN MAPLEWOOD, PATH TO BETTER COMMUNITY RELATIONS BEGINS ITS LONG, DIFFICULT JOURNEY Village Green continues to follow the fall-out from the police audio and video released this summer that captured police herding local teens of color out of town and punching and kicking one handcuffed teen. This week, Mary Mann says community members want a halt to police/student mentoring programs. DEMOCRATS FILE COMPLAINT AND INVESTIGATION AGAINST MAYOR BARBERIO The Morris County Democratic Committee has filed a complaint against Parsippany mayor James Barberio with the NJ Election Law Enforcement Commission. Frank Cahill of Parsippany Focus says Democrats also asked ELEC to open an investigation into Barberio and his campaign accounts, alleging violations of a New Jersey regulation that prohibits the use of taxpayer dollars to promote the campaigns of incumbent elected officials. TAPINTO SPRINGFIELD CANDIDATE FORUM IS CANCELED, TOWNSHIP VOTES TO DISALLOW USE OF CHISHOLM CENTER The Springfield Township has canceled a scheduled candidate forum organized by TAPinto Springfield and informed the publication that they will not be permitted to use the Chisholm Center for the forum. Ellen Dickson of TAPinto Springfield says the forum was canceled because her publication is not a non-profit organization. 'GENTRIFICATION AT ITS WORST': RESIDENTS, ADVOCACY GROUPS FIGHT TO SAVE TERRELL HOMES Hundreds of residents at Newark's Terrell Homes public housing complex are fighting to keep their homes after the Newark Housing Authority voted to demolish the complex. Elena Knopp of TAPinto Newark says the NHA has cited structural, environmental, and security concerns as reasons for the recommended demolition, but housing advocacy groups say only a small portion of residents would qualify for the housing vouchers that would allow them to move into other affordable housing units. LANING, HBW BRING COMFORTING TOUCH TO LEARNING Children's sensory systems can be disrupted by both temporary problems in their lives and permanent biological conditions, and those disruptions can make it hard for them to focus on learning in school. As such, Virginia Citrano of MyVeronaNJ says one of Verona's elementary schools and its middle school have installed sensory rooms where children from both special education and general education populations can use a variety of tools and strategies to self-regulate their systems. MORRISTOWN MAYOR APOLOGIZES TO RESIDENTS WHO SAY TOWN IGNORED COMPLAINTS ABOUT BOARDING HOME It's not the kind of public turnout you want weeks before an election, but Kevin Coughlin of Morristown Green says the mayor of Morristown answered angry residents by taking responsibility for the town hall's poor response to their complaints about a questionable boarding house. Other notable stories include: Students plant pinwheels for peace by David Schatz of MyCentralJersey.com Westfield Council Candidate Denies Claim that he is Ineligible to Run by Jackie Lieberman of TAPinto Westfield Fleeing Indonesia, Edison Couple Take Refuge in Highland Park by Dan Munoz of TAPinto New Brunswick State Seizes Shenanigans Toys in Maplewood for Unpaid Taxes by Joe Strupp of TAPinto SOMA Want more? Check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

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