In an effort to bring items of interest to ParamusPost.com readers, we are introducing "Paramus Profiles" featuring prominent Paramus people. Who better to introduce the feature with than our mayor, James J. Tedesco III. We conducted an interview with the mayor during one of the busiest days of his tenure...
He had just finished a grueling day, not only conferring with Acting Governor Richard Codey and his staff, but also appearing on television at the Garden State Plaza. After that came Paramus personnel conferences and then www.ParamusPost.com. Despite the hectic day, our mayor was congenial and gave us all the time needed. The only indication of his active day was that he took off his suit jacket.
A lifetime resident of Paramus, Jim started in politics as a way to pay back to the town, the support it had given him. Initially he was a volunteer fireman and graduated into running for office as a councilman. From there, the mayoralty was the next step. As mayor, he is constantly on the go and manages to attend most functions requiring his presence even though he has a full time job with Public Service as a Regional Manager. Of course, his secretary Flo Pappas helps to make his Paramus Mayorâ€™s life easier.
Jim married another lifetime resident, Renee who works at Toys-R-Us as a supervisor of special orders for baby girls at their Wayne headquarters. She also serves as a staunch supporter of her husband. When we asked Jim about his family, he immediately deferred to Renee who gave out the information that they have three offspring, Koren, 28, a Manager of Fashion accessories for Liz Claiborne, James IV a NYC firefighter (a chip off the old block) and 22 year old Holly a student at William Paterson University.
Jim is a member of: Paramus Volunteer Fire Department, American Red Cross Bergen/Hudson Chapter, NJ & Bergen County Mayorâ€™s Associations and the Bergen 200 Club just to name a few.
When asked about his aims and satisfaction level, Jim Tedesco came out with a long list, not necessarily in this order:
- Control overdevelopment that does not best serve our community
- Enact legislation to prevent development of land where not appropriate
- Re-introduce open space question on the November ballot
- Work with city and state to improve roadways, make them safer and improve traffic flow
- Re-design and reorganize the local court system
- Creating Parking and Borough code enforcement group
- Enforce Borough Property Maintenance Ordinances
- Bring back Keep Paramus Beautiful program
- Implement a program for the rehabilitation of homes for income eligible families using COAH funds, a program that allows homeowners to replace heating systems, roofs, insulation and windows.
- Formation of a committee, elected officials and residents, to start the process of building a Community/Senior/ Cultural Center.
- Support the library expansion
- Continue to lead efforts in having Juvenile Detention Center located elsewhere and in a non-residential area
As for his satisfaction level: â€œHappy, but so much more to do!â€