Passaic, New Jersey

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Passaic, New Jersey
City
City of Passaic
Map of Passaic in Passaic County. Inset: Location of Passaic County highlighted in the State of New Jersey.
Map of Passaic in Passaic County. Inset: Location of Passaic County highlighted in the State of New Jersey.
Census Bureau map of Passaic, New Jersey
Census Bureau map of Passaic, New Jersey
Coordinates: 40°51′23″N 74°07′37″W / 40.856413°N 74.12694°W / 40.856413; -74.12694Coordinates: 40°51′23″N 74°07′37″W / 40.856413°N 74.12694°W / 40.856413; -74.12694[1][2]
Country  United States
State  New Jersey
County Passaic
Settled 1679
Incorporated April 2, 1873
Government[7]
 • Type Faulkner Act (Mayor-Council)
 • Mayor Alex Blanco (term ends June 30, 2017)[3][4]
 • Administrator Rick Fernandez[5]
 • Clerk Amada Curling[6]
Area[2]
 • Total 3.244 sq mi (8.401 km2)
 • Land 3.146 sq mi (8.149 km2)
 • Water 0.098 sq mi (0.253 km2)  3.01%
Area rank 324th of 566 in state
11th of 16 in county[2]
Elevation[8] 98 ft (30 m)
Population (2010 Census)[9][10][11][12]
 • Total 69,781
 • Estimate (2013)[13] 70,868
 • Rank 15th of 566 in state
3rd of 16 in county[14]
 • Density 22,179.6/sq mi (8,563.6/km2)
 • Density rank 7th of 566 in state
1st of 16 in county[14]
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) Eastern (EDT) (UTC-4)
ZIP code 07055[15][16]
Area code(s) 973[17]
FIPS code 3403156550[18][2][19]
GNIS feature ID 0885342[20][2]
Website www.cityofpassaic.com

Passaic (/pəˈs.ɨk/ pə-SAY-ik[21] or local /pəˈsk/ pə-SAYK[22]) is a city in Passaic County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the city had a total population of 69,781,[9][11][12] maintaining its status as the 15th largest municipality in New Jersey with an increase of 1,920 residents (+2.8%) from the 2000 Census population of 67,861,[10] which had in turn increased by 9,820 (+16.9%) from the 58,041 counted in the 1990 Census.[23]

Located north of Newark on the Passaic River, it was first settled in 1678 by Dutch traders, as Acquackanonk Township. The city and river draw their name from the Lenape word "pahsayèk" which has been variously attributed to mean "valley" or "place where the land splits."[24][25]

History[edit]

Main Avenue in 1911

The city originated from a Dutch settlement on the Passaic River established in 1679 which was called Acquackanonk. Industrial growth began in the 19th century, as Passaic became a textile and metalworking center. Passaic was formed within Acquackanonk Township on March 10, 1869, and was incorporated as an independent village on March 21, 1871. Passaic was chartered as a city on April 2, 1873.[26]

The 1926 Passaic Textile Strike led by union organizer Albert Weisbord had 36,000 mill workers leave their jobs to oppose wage cuts demanded by the textile industry. The workers successfully fought to keep their wages unchanged but did not receive recognition of their union by the mill owners.[27]

Passaic has been called "The Birthplace of Television".[28] In 1931, experimental television station W2XCD began transmitting from DeForest Radio Corp. in Passaic. It has been called the first television station to transmit to the home, and was the first such station to broadcast a feature film. Allen B. DuMont, formerly DeForest's chief engineer, opened pioneering TV manufacturer DuMont Laboratories in Passaic in 1937, and started the DuMont Television Network, the world's first commercial television network, in 1946. The Okonite company began manufacturing electrical cable here in 1888, with early uses of the company's insulated wires including some of the earliest telegraph cables and the wiring for Thomas Edison's Pearl Street Station in Lower Manhattan.[29]

In 1992, the voters of Passaic Township in Morris County voted to change the name of their municipality to Long Hill Township, to avoid confusion between the City of Passaic and the largely rural community 22 miles (35 km) away, as well as association with the more urban city.[30]

Passaic is served by two newspapers, The Record and The Star-Ledger.

Geography[edit]

Passaic is located at 40°51′23″N 74°07′37″W / 40.856413°N 74.12694°W / 40.856413; -74.12694 (40.856413,-74.12694). According to the United States Census Bureau, the city had a total area of 3.244 square miles (8.401 km2), of which, 3.146 square miles (8.149 km2) of it was land and 0.098 square miles (0.253 km2) of it (3.01%) was water.[1][2] Passaic is bordered on the north, west and south by the City of Clifton, and to the east by the Passaic River.

Passaic is located 10 miles (16 km) from New York City, and 12 miles (19 km) from Newark Airport.

The city[edit]

St. John the Baptist Russian Orthodox Church on Lexington Avenue, built in 1959–1960

Passaic has several business districts: Main Avenue begins in Passaic Park and follows the curve of the river to downtown. Broadway runs east – west through the center of the city, ending at Main Avenue in downtown. Monroe Street has many shops, restaurants and businesses reflecting the city's Latino and Eastern European populations.

The city is home to several architecturally notable churches, including St. John's Lutheran Church, First Presbyterian of Passaic, and St. John's Episcopal Church.

Passaic Park[edit]

Southwest Passaic (known as Passaic Park) is a residential and institutional center of Orthodox Judaism, with 25-30 minyanim on Shabbos, and 1,300 families, as well as being home to numerous yeshivas, schools and other institutions. There are also kosher food and shopping establishments.[31]

Passaic Park takes its name from Third Ward Park. This area is also noted for its large mansions and homes of various architectural styles, especially Victorian and Tudor. Several condominium and cooperative apartment complexes are also located here including: Carlton Tower (at 22 stories, the city's tallest structure[32]), Presidential Towers, and Barry Gardens (which are all located within walking distance of each other near a stretch of Passaic Avenue between Lafayette Avenue and Green Court).

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 6,532
1890 13,028 99.4%
1900 27,777 113.2%
1910 54,773 97.2%
1920 63,841 16.6%
1930 62,959 −1.4%
1940 61,394 −2.5%
1950 57,702 −6.0%
1960 53,963 −6.5%
1970 55,124 2.2%
1980 52,463 −4.8%
1990 58,041 10.6%
2000 67,861 16.9%
2010 69,781 2.8%
Est. 2013 70,868 [13] 1.6%
Population sources: 1880-1920[33]
1880-1890[34] 1880-1900[35] 1890-1910[36]
1910[37] 1880-1930[38] 1930-1990[39]
2000[40][41] 2010[9][10][11][12]

Among the speakers of Polish in Passaic are many Gorals.[42]

Passaic has a sizable Orthodox Jewish community that reaches into neighboring Clifton, with 20 Orthodox synagogues serving a Jewish population of 12,000 that is predominantly Orthodox.[43]

In the first half of the twentieth century there was a sizable Italian American population, but this has declined over the years.[citation needed]

Census 2010[edit]

At the 2010 United States Census, there were 69,781 people, 19,411 households, and 14,597 families residing in the city. The population density was 22,179.6 per square mile (8,563.6/km2). There were 20,432 housing units at an average density of 6,494.2 per square mile (2,507.4/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 45.06% (31,440) White, 10.64% (7,425) Black or African American, 1.07% (745) Native American, 4.36% (3,040) Asian, 0.04% (27) Pacific Islander, 33.37% (23,284) from other races, and 5.47% (3,820) from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 71.02% (49,557) of the population.[9] The city's Hispanic population represented the fourth-highest percentage among municipalities in New Jersey as of the 2010 Census.[44]

There were 19,411 households, of which 42.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.7% were married couples living together, 23.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 24.8% were non-families. 19.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 7.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.57 and the average family size was 4.02.[9]

In the city, 31.5% of the population were under the age of 18, 11.4% from 18 to 24, 29.8% from 25 to 44, 19.6% from 45 to 64, and 7.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 29.2 years. For every 100 females there were 100.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 99.2 males.[9]

The Census Bureau's 2006-2010 American Community Survey showed that (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) median household income was $31,135 (with a margin of error of +/- $1,280) and the median family income was $34,934 (+/- $2,987). Males had a median income of $30,299 (+/- $1,883) versus $25,406 (+/- $2,456) for females. The per capita income for the city was $14,424 (+/- $581). About 25.0% of families and 27.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 35.9% of those under age 18 and 25.5% of those age 65 or over.[45]

Same-sex couples headed 107 households in 2010, a decline of the 142 counted in 2000.[46]

Census 2000[edit]

As of the 2000 United States Census[18] there were 67,861 people, 19,458 households, and 14,457 families residing in the city of Passaic, New Jersey. The population density was 21,804.7 people per square mile (8,424.8/km²). There were 20,194 housing units at an average density of 6,488.6 per square mile (2,507.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 35.43% White, 13.83% African American, 0.78% Native American, 5.51% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 39.36% from other races, and 5.04% from two or more races. The cultural groupings for Hispanic or Latino of any race were 62.46% of the population.[40][41]

As of the 2000 Census, 59.3% of residents spoke Spanish at home, while 28.9% of residents identified themselves as speaking only English at home. An additional 2.5% were speakers of Gujarathi and 2.4% spoke Polish.[47] There were 31,101 foreign-born residents of Passaic in 2000, of which 79.4% were from Latin America, with 31.3% of foreign-born residents from Mexico and 27.2% from the Dominican Republic.[48]

There were 19,458 households out of which 42.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.7% were married couples living together, 21.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.7% were non-families. 8.2% of Passaic households were same-sex partner households. 20.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.46 and the average family size was 3.93.[40][41]

In the city the population was spread out with 30.8% under the age of 18, 12.5% from 18 to 24, 31.6% from 25 to 44, 16.9% from 45 to 64, and 8.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 29 years. For every 100 females there were 99.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.4 males.[40][41]

The median income for a household in the city was $33,594, and the median income for a family was $34,935. Males had a median income of $24,568 versus $21,352 for females. The per capita income for the city was $12,874. About 18.4% of families and 21.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.6% of those under age 18 and 16.0% of those age 65 or over.[40][41]

Government[edit]

Local government[edit]

The city of Passaic is governed within the Faulkner Act system of municipal government, formally known as the Optional Municipal Charter Law, under the Mayor-Council (Plan B), enacted by direct petition as of July 1, 1973.[49] Under this form of government, the mayor is elected directly by the voters for a four-year term of office. Seven council Members serve four-year terms on a staggered basis, with either three or four seats up for election in odd-numbered years. Elections are non-partisan, with all positions selected at-large in balloting held in May.[7]

The Mayor of Passaic is Alex Blanco, whose term of office ends June 30, 2017.[50][3] Blanco won a special election in November 2008 to succeed acting mayor Gary Schaer, who, as City Council president automatically moved into this position upon the resignation by previous mayor Samuel Rivera, after Rivera pleaded guilty to corruption charges filed against him.[51] Blanco was elected to serve the remainder of Rivera's term, and was re-elected to a full term on May 12, 2009, with 4,751 votes (53.2% of votes cast), defeating Passaic Board of Education member Vinny Capuana who received 4,177 (46.8%).[52]

As of 2014, members of the Passaic City Council are Council President Gary Schaer (term ends June 30, 2015), Jose R. "Joe" Garcia (2017), Terrence L. Love (2017), Thania Melo (2015), Chaim M. Munk (2015), Zaida Polanco (2015) and Daniel J. Schwartz (2017).[50][53][3] In addition to his role as council president, Schaer also holds a seat in the New Jersey General Assembly. This dual position, often called double dipping, is allowed under a grandfather clause in the state law enacted by the New Jersey Legislature and signed into law by Governor of New Jersey Jon Corzine in September 2007 that prevents dual-office-holding but allows those who had held both positions as of February 1, 2008, to retain both posts.[54]

Corruption charges over the past decades have resulted in the federal convictions of two mayors, seven councilman and other public officials.[55][56] Passaic Business Administrator Anthony Ianoco was terminated in February 2011 after he was charged with cocaine possession, following his arrest in Hoboken, where police arrested him after he was caught driving the wrong way in a Passaic city vehicle.[57]

Federal, state and county representation[edit]

Passaic is located in the 9th Congressional District[58] and is part of New Jersey's 36th state legislative district.[11][59][60] Prior to the 2010 Census, Passaic had been part of the 8th Congressional District, a change made by the New Jersey Redistricting Commission that took effect in January 2013, based on the results of the November 2012 general elections.[61]

New Jersey's Ninth Congressional District is represented by Bill Pascrell (D, Paterson).[62] New Jersey is represented in the United States Senate by Cory Booker (D, Newark; took office on October 31, 2013, after winning a special election to fill the seat of Frank Lautenberg)[63][64] and Bob Menendez (D, Paramus).[65][66]

The 36th District of the New Jersey Legislature is represented in the State Senate by Paul Sarlo (D, Wood-Ridge) and in the General Assembly by Marlene Caride (D, Ridgefield) and Gary Schaer (D, Passaic).[67] The Governor of New Jersey is Chris Christie (R, Mendham Township).[68] The Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey is Kim Guadagno (R, Monmouth Beach).[69]

Passaic County is governed by a seven-member Board of Chosen Freeholders, who are elected to staggered three-year terms office on an at-large basis, with two or three seats coming up for election each year.[70] As of 2013, Passaic County's Freeholders are Freeholder Director Bruce James (D, term ends December 31, 2014; Clifton),[71] Freeholder Deputy Director Theodore O. Best Jr. (D, 2014; Paterson),[72] John W. Bartlett (D, 2015; Wayne), Ronda Cotroneo (D, 2015; Ringwood), Terry Duffy (D, 2013; West Milford),[73] Pat Lepore (D, 2013; Woodland Park)[74] and Hector C. Lora (D, 2015; Passaic).[75][76] Constitutional officers elected on a countywide basis are County Clerk Kristin M. Corrado (2014),[77] Sheriff Richard H. Berdnik[78] and Surrogate Bernice Toledo.[79]

Politics[edit]

As of March 23, 2011, there were a total of 24,227 registered voters in Passaic, of which 8,753 (36.1% vs. 31.0% countywide) were registered as Democrats, 2,063 (8.5% vs. 18.7%) were registered as Republicans and 13,408 (55.3% vs. 50.3%) were registered as Unaffiliated. There were 3 voters registered to other parties.[80] Among the city's 2010 Census population, 34.7% (vs. 53.2% in Passaic County) were registered to vote, including 50.7% of those ages 18 and over (vs. 70.8% countywide).[80][81]

In the 2008 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 12,386 votes here (72.7% vs. 58.8% countywide), ahead of Republican John McCain with 4,012 votes (23.6% vs. 37.7%) and other candidates with 93 votes (0.5% vs. 0.8%), among the 17,033 ballots cast by the city's 25,496 registered voters, for a turnout of 66.8% (vs. 70.4% in Passaic County).[82] In the 2004 presidential election, Democrat John Kerry received 9,539 votes here (66.3% vs. 53.9% countywide), ahead of Republican George W. Bush with 4,291 votes (29.8% vs. 42.7%) and other candidates with 62 votes (0.4% vs. 0.7%), among the 14,391 ballots cast by the city's 23,389 registered voters, for a turnout of 61.5% (vs. 69.3% in the whole county).[83]

In the 2009 gubernatorial election, Democrat Jon Corzine received 5,958 ballots cast (68.7% vs. 50.8% countywide), ahead of Republican Chris Christie with 2,319 votes (26.7% vs. 43.2%), Independent Chris Daggett with 124 votes (1.4% vs. 3.8%) and other candidates with 52 votes (0.6% vs. 0.9%), among the 8,672 ballots cast by the city's 24,219 registered voters, yielding a 35.8% turnout (vs. 42.7% in the county).[84]

Education[edit]

Public[edit]

The Passaic City School District is a type II school district, and is an independent legal entity administered by a nine-member Board of Education elected by the voters of the school district. The Superintendent of Schools is Pablo Muñoz.[85] The district is one of 31 former Abbott districts statewide,[86] which are now referred to as "SDA Districts" based on the requirement for the state to cover all costs for school building and renovation projects in these districts under the supervision of the New Jersey Schools Development Authority.[87][88]

As of the 2011-12 school year, the district's 16 schools had an enrollment of 13,136 students and 1,011.8 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 12.98:1.[89] Schools in the district (with 2010-11 enrollment data from the National Center for Education Statistics[90]) are Vincent Capuana School No. 15[91] (209; K), Passaic School No. 16[92] (500; PreK-K), Passaic School No. 17[93] (377; PreK-K), Jefferson School No. 1[94] (739; 1-6), Washington School No. 2[95] (233; K-2), Mario Drago School No. 3[96] (formerly Franklin School - 963; PreK-6), School No. 5[97] (332; 4-6), Martin Luther King, Jr. School No. 6[98] (1,143; PreK-6), Grant School No. 7[99] (283; PreK-2), Casimir Pulaski School No. 8[100] (541; PreK-3), Etta Gero School No. 9[101] (718; 3-6), Theodore Roosevelt School No. 10[102] (761; K-4), William B. Cruise Memorial School No. 11[103] (1,332; 1-6), Daniel F. Ryan School No. 19[104] (705; PreK-5), Abraham Lincoln Middle School No. 4[105] (1,702; 7-8), Passaic High School[106] (2,598; 9-12).[107][108]

Passaic County Community College opened a new campus in the city of Passaic on September 11, 2008, which will allow PCCC to reach the 15% of its students who come from the city of Passaic. The college's nursing program will be relocated and expanded at the new campus to provide a qualified program to help fill the longstanding nursing shortage.[109]

Private[edit]

St. Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic School is an elementary school founded in 1943 that operates under the supervision of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Paterson and the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia.[110]

Established in 1895, the Collegiate School is a private coeducational day school located in Passaic, serving students in prekindergarten through twelfth grade.[111]

The Yeshiva Gedola of Passaic is an institute of Talmudic learning for post-high-school-age men. Passaic has two Mesivtas, Mesivta Tiferes Rav Tzvi Aryeh Zemel Zal, and Mesivta Zichron Baruch. Passaic also has a number of Orthodox educational institutions for primary education as well as other advanced seminaries and kollels for married students.

Emergency services[edit]

Fire[edit]

The Passaic Fire Department (PFD) is a paid fire department with 93 firefighters. The PFD was organized in November 1869 and became a paid department in 1909. There are two fire houses that contain seven Engines and three Ladder trucks.[112]

Ambulance[edit]

Commerce[edit]

Portions of Passaic are part of an Urban Enterprise Zone. In addition to other benefits to encourage employment within the Zone, shoppers can take advantage of a reduced 3½% sales tax rate (versus the 7% rate charged statewide) at eligible merchants.[113]

Since 1994, the Hercules Chemical Company has been located in Passaic.[114]

Transportation[edit]

As of 2010, the city had a total of 70.14 miles (112.88 km) of roadways, of which 53.20 miles (85.62 km) were maintained by the municipality, 13.82 miles (22.24 km) by Passaic County and 3.12 miles (5.02 km) by the New Jersey Department of Transportation.[115]

Passaic is served by state roadways including Route 3 and Route 21. The Garden State Parkway and Interstate 80 are nearby. There are five bridges crossing the Passaic River.

Public transportation[edit]

Local bus transportation, much passing through the Passaic Bus Terminal, is provided by New Jersey Transit and Community Coach with service to Paterson, Rutherford, Newark, Clifton, Garfield, and Wallington among other locations on the 74, 702, 703, 705, 707, 709, 744, 758, 780 and 970routes. New Jersey Transit bus routes 161 and 190 provides local service and interstate service to the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Midtown Manhattan.[116]

New Jersey Transit's Passaic rail station[117] is located in the Passaic Park section, providing service on the Main Line southbound to Hoboken Terminal, and to Secaucus Junction for New Jersey Transit connections to Pennsylvania Station in Midtown Manhattan, Newark Airport and points north and south. Northbound service is provided to Paterson, Ridgewood and New York stations in Suffern and Port Jervis.[118]

Passaic formerly had four train stations (Passaic Park, Prospect Street, Passaic and Harrison Street) on the Erie Railroad main line. In 1963, these stations were abandoned and the main line was moved to the Boonton Branch.[119]

Commuter jitney buses operate along Main Avenue providing non-scheduled service to Paterson, Union City, the George Washington Bridge Bus Terminal in Washington Heights, Manhattan, and points between.[120]

Films shot in Passaic[edit]

Climate[edit]

The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Passaic has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.[123]

Notable people[edit]

People who were born in, residents of, or otherwise closely associated with Passaic include:

References[edit]

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  2. ^ a b c d e f Gazetteer of New Jersey Places, United States Census Bureau. Accessed June 14, 2013.
  3. ^ a b c Passaic Municipal Election Summary Report Official Results May 14, 2013, Passaic County, New Jersey. Accessed October 16, 2013.
  4. ^ 2013 New Jersey Mayors Directory, New Jersey Department of Community Affairs. Accessed October 16, 2013. As of date accessed, a term-end date of May 2, 2013, is listed for Blanco.
  5. ^ Administration, City of Passaic. Accessed September 21, 2014.
  6. ^ Municipal Clerk, City of Passaic. Accessed September 21, 2014.
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External links[edit]