U.S. senators ask FCC to hold Secaucus-based TV station accountableU.S. Senators Robert Menendez and Cory Booker have urged the FCC to consider WWOR-TV’s shortcomings in serving New Jersey in its decision to renew or deny the station’s license. Based in Secaucus, FOX-owned WWOR-TV is the state’s only commercial, high-power broadcast TV station.“WWOR-TV’s failure to provide local news coverage goes back several years,” the senators wrote in a letter to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai.“The WWOR-TV license makes clear – and the FCC has confirmed on multiple occasions – that WWOR has special obligations to serve North Jersey,” the letter added. “Yet despite these requirements, concerns about WWOR-TV’s failure to live up to its broadcasting obligations in New Jersey have endured for over a decade.”A 1982 federal law mandates that any license holder for WWOR-TV “devote itself to meeting the special needs of its new community (and the needs of the Northern New Jersey area in general).”But according to the senators, “In 2009, WWOR-TV reduced its news coverage by more than half. At that time WWOR-TV broadcast 8.8 percent as much news programming as its peer group.”The Fox-owned station also closed down its New Jersey news operation in 2013. The move forced layoffs and absorbed staff from affiliate WNWY-TV in New York City.It soon replaced its live newscasts with “Chasing New Jersey”— now called “Chasing News”— a half-hour, TMZ-style program produced by an outside company.WWOR-TV now only offers three hours of weekly news programming, compared to the 56 hour average by other nearby broadcast stations, the letter claims.“The FCC’s refusal to hold WWOR-TV accountable is unacceptable. For years, WWOR-TV has flouted its responsibility, and yet the commission does nothing,” the letter said.“We feel strongly that WWOR-TV’s refusal to abide by its legal obligations should factor heavily in your review of its license renewal application.”Menendez previously requested a “prompt and thorough” review of WWOR’s license renewal application in 2013.Affordable housing units application deadline is Feb. 28The Town of Secaucus has announced that 38-1 bedroom affordable housing units will be available for rent at the XChange at Secaucus Junction, 3000-5000 Riverside Station (building K), Secaucus, New Jersey.The housing is under development by Fraternity Meadows, LLC and is available for low- and moderate-income households. Fraternity Meadows of Secaucus is located off the New County Road Extension next to the railway transfer station at the 15X exit of the New Jersey Turnpike.The affordable housing available includes affordable rents, from $431 to $827 and includes 38-1 bedroom units, which are age-restricted. Age-restricted housing is limited to those families where the head of household is 55 or older.Heat, cooking, hot water, and electricity are paid by the tenant.Interested households will be required to submit an application and income documentation, and pass a credit check in order to qualify. The maximum household incomes permitted are $48,217 for a one-person household and $55,105 for a two-person household. Once certified, households will be matched to affordable units through a lottery system.All successful applicants will be required to demonstrate the ability to pay a security deposit (one and one half months rent) and first month’s rent and agree to maintain the units as the family’s primary residence.Applications are available at the Secaucus Housing Authority, the Secaucus Library, Municipal Building, and Hudson County Dept. of Human Services.Applications can also be requested via mail by calling the leased Housing Corporation at (201) 867-5902.Applications will be accepted until Wednesday, Feb. 28, and there is a $50.00 fee (money order/bank check, no personal checks) for a police and credit background check. Applications must be post-marked and mailed by 2/28/2018 to Affordable Housing Board, 700 County Ave., Secaucus, NJ 07094. No drop-offs.Visit www.njhousing.gov or call 1-877-428-8844 for more affordable housing opportunities. Although any income eligible households may apply, residents and workers of Hudson, Bergen, Passaic and Sussex Counties will be selected before residents of other counties or states. Man arrested after allegedly trying to rob Secaucus gas station twicePolice arrested a man who allegedly tried to rob the same gas station twice within six days, according to the Secaucus Police Department.On Jan. 21, officers received a call of an armed robbery at a Mobil gas station at 445 Route 3 East. The robber allegedly displayed a kitchen knife and escaped with over $200 on foot, a police report said.Shortly afterwards, a police detective located the suspect on Cedar Avenue, which is near the gas station. The detective arrested Kareem Abdelaal, 28. He was allegedly found with a folding knife during his arrest.Officials have also identified Abdelaal as the alleged suspect in another robbery at the same Mobil station on Jan. 15.He is also a suspect in a Jan. 17 alleged burglary at the Extended Stay Hotel at 1 Plaza Dr, and a Jan. 19 robbery at the Extended Stay America Hotel on Meadowlands Parkway. Each robbery was allegedly at knife point.Abdelaal is charged with three counts of armed robbery, three counts of possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, three counts of terroristic threats, three counts of unlawful possession of a weapon, and two counts of hindering prosecution, burglary, and theft. He was lodged at the Hudson County Jail.