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Power Restored, Schools Reopen in Sandy Aftermath

Hopatcong starts returning to normalcy two weeks after storm.

Hopatcong has started to slowly settle back in to normal life two weeks after Hurricane Sandy completely shut down the borough and displaced hundreds of residents.

While it is going to be a while before the borough can fully recover from the damage from the storm, the town is on the right track in returning to normalcy.

As of Sunday night, the majority of the borough had its power restored, which allowed for the closure of the Hopatcong High School shelter and reopening of schools.

The largest drop in outages occurred on Friday night, where . Throughout the weekend, more residents reported having power back and contributed to our interactive map by listing out the streets that had lights come on.

The Middle School and elementary schools will reopen on Tuesday after losing 10 school days. The parent-teacher conferences will be postponed until further notice, and the schools will run on full days instead of the original half-days listed on the schedule.

Hopatong High School is opening a day later on Wednesday because of all of the cleaning that needs to be done after it served as a home for hundreds of people the past two weeks.

Mayor Sylvia released a statement Monday afternoon saying the borough's communication to the public was the biggest issue after Sandy. 

"We continue to question our utilities and seek the answers as to why communications was poor and inaccurate and why power restoration took so long," she said. "We are in contact with the County and State officials demanding action."

Petillo said officials have already started to examine ways to improve social media and other forms of communication "that will improve our abilities to communicate promptly, accurately and to a greater number of our residents."

The Hopatcong Borough Council meeting that was postponed last week will be held on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at the Municipal Building. Petillo said the officials will have a report on Sandy at the meeting.

CkM November 13, 2012 at 03:33 PM
Mayor Petillo...PLEASE stop blaming others for your failures. I spoke with the OEM of Sussex County during the power outage several times and they were very helpful.They even called me back and offered some very good information.. Where was our Hopatcong OEM Director Bob Haffner? He had a volunteer answering his phone...and you weren't in your office. You were on the lunch line at the Shelter. To say you are demanding action and speaking with County and State officials NOW is a bit past-due, dont you think? Your residents were speaking to state and county officials DURING the 13 day power outage.
Linda P November 13, 2012 at 03:36 PM
Wasn't it the Mayor that had lack of communication with us? Yes, JCP&L were giving us inaccurate percentages and dates of restoration, but we didn't hear a peep from the Mayor until about a week in. If it wasn't for FB and the Hopatcong Police Dept. I wouldn't have known what was going on in my town at all since I was staying elsewhere till my power was restored. I think the Mayor needs to own up to her lack of communication with her town and stop pointing fingers.
Claudia Ormrod November 14, 2012 at 02:13 AM
Inexcusable lack of communcation on the Mayor's part. This was the worst diaster in Hopatcong history and it took her two weeks to actually DO SOMETHING to get power restored. I have no confidence in our current local government and will vote with that lack of confidence come election day.
Karla November 14, 2012 at 03:24 PM
Well I woke up this morning and my power was again shut off after they restored my power on Sunday . I of course had a false sense of security because I went and bought 400$ worth of food and now I have no difinitive answer as to how long my power will be out. And of course I talked to jcpl and they won't reimburse me for any food loss . They should have told me that this might happen .jcpl said they rerouted the power just to get everyone up so they gave everyone a false sense of security ! I have 7 children and already lost 400$ worth of food !!

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