Civic umbrella group to represent greater Newark
Two community leaders are in the beginning stages of creating a civic umbrella group to represent the Newark area.
The Greater Newark Civic Alliance held its first meeting last month, led by Stephanie Rizzo, secretary of the Chestnut Hill Estates Civic Association; and Vic Enos, president of Brookside Community, Inc.
“It’s really to band the community together,” Enos said. “When we start sticking together and helping each other, that’s what it’s all about.”
New Castle County has more than a dozen civic umbrella groups, such as the 7 & 40 Alliance and Pike Creek Valley Civic League, which represent a group of neighborhood civic associations from a particular area.
Rizzo, who also works for the county’s Department of Community Services, said umbrella groups help civic association leaders learn from each other as well as discuss common issues.
“It’s to share information and be the voice for the community,” she said.
Most of the county is represented by at least one umbrella group, but Newark and the surrounding area is not.
“I just thought it was important for Newark to have something,” Rizzo said, noting that County Executive Tom Gordon has monthly meetings with representatives of the umbrella groups. “The county executive has information to pass on, but there is no one from Newark to pass it on to.”
That changed last month, when Enos attended the meeting on behalf of GNCA.
“The county executive does listen. He takes notes and jots things down,” said Enos, who added that he asked Gordon to bring back crime maps on the county website.
The GNCA boundary encompasses all of the city of Newark and the immediately surrounding neighbor- hoods, as well as an area to the east of the city that is roughly bordered by Capitol Trail to the north, Interstate 95 to the south and Route 7 to the east. Approximately 40 neighborhoods fall into that area.
In the coming months, GNCA will develop bylaws, elect officers and form committees, Rizzo said. The next meeting is set for 7 p.m. June 13 at the Newark Free Library. All are welcome.
The proposed boundaries of the Greater Newark Civic Alliance are shown in red.