Mount Olive Township Council Minutes
November 21, 2000

November 21, 2000 Council Minutes

The Regular meeting of the Mount Olive Township Council was called to Order at 7:30 pm by Council President Sohl.

According to the Open Public Meetings Act, adequate Notice of this meeting has been given to the Mount Olive Chronicle and the Morristown Daily Record. Notice has been posted at the entrance of the Municipal Building, 204 Flanders-Drakestown Road, Mt. Olive, New Jersey, and notices were sent to those requesting the same.

ROLL CALL: Present: Mr. Heymann, Mr. Guenther, Mr. Scapicchio, Mrs. Kelly, Mr. Spino, Mr. Rattner, President Sohl

Absent: Mr. Spino

President Sohl: I would also like to acknowledge the attendance of the Mayor, Paul Licitra; the Business Administrator, Sandy Kaplan; the Township Attorney, John Dorsey; and Township Clerk, Lisa Lashway.

Baseball/Softball Presentation

President Sohl: We went through the Baseball/Softball Presentation before the meeting started.

Presentation - David Romanchick

President Sohl: We will reschedule this for next meeting.

ROLL CALL

ADMINISTRATIVE REPORTS - Appointment of Howie Weiss to Planning Board

Mayor Licitra: Our “Second Alternate” -- Howie Weiss, will take Don Rutledge’s vacated position. I can’t tell you how sorry I am to lose Mr. Rutledge, but I’m going to try to find a way to get some kind of feedback from the School Board on to the Planning Board. I don’t have to tell you what Howie’s credentials are. He’s been in Town 38 years, and he’s very active in the community. So, I’m pleased to appoint Howie to the Board.

President Sohl: Thank you, Mayor. And that does not require any Council action.

LEGAL REPORTS: NONE

APPROVAL OF MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS:

October 10, 2000 Present: Mr. Heymann, Mr. Guenther, Mr. Scapicchio, Mrs. Kelly, Mr. Spino, Mr. Rattner, President Sohl

Mr. Heymann moved for approval of the Minutes and Ms. Kelly seconded the Motion.

ROLL CALL: All in Favor, none Opposed.

CORRESPONDENCE

Letters From Residents

1. Letter received October 25, 2000, from Richard Bonte RE: Requiring Permits for Hunters to post lands not owned by individual hunters or group, and land survey of property size, boundaries to determine the property lines of said property.

1. Letter received October 26, 2000, from Rudolf Nordman RE: Property and/or Gas Easement.

2. Invitation received November 7, 2000, from Lynda Smith, The Bear Education and Resource Group, RE: Celebration of the victory of the campaign to stop the New Jersey 2000 black bear hunt.

School Correspondence

Resolutions, Ordinances, Correspondence from other Towns

3. Letter received October 25, 2000, from the Borough of Netcong RE: NJ State Planning Commission unanimously approved Netcong Borough’s Petition for Town Center designation at is meeting of September 27, 2000.

4. Letter received October 27, 2000, from Parsippany-Troy Hills RE: Resolution Supporting an Amendment to the Morris County Regional Emergency Deployment System Agreement.

5. Resolution received November 6, 2000, from the City of Clifton RE: Supporting proposed Legislation and Constitutional Amendment Providing that State Funds for Education Be Distributed Equally.

Resolutions, Ordinances, Correspondence from Freeholders and County Departments

6. Minutes received October 25, 2000, from the Morris County Planning Board, August 3, 2000, Regular Meeting.

Correspondence from Legislative Representatives

7. Letter received October 23, 2000, from Governor Christine Todd Whitman RE: Resolution adopted by Mt. Olive Township Council regarding A2371/S940.

8. Letter received October 23, 2000, from Assemblyman E. Scott Garret RE: Resolution adopted by Mt. Olive Township Council regarding Senate Bill 940.

9. Letter received October 30, 2000, from Senator Anthony Bucco RE: Resolution adopted by Mt. Olive Township Council regarding Senate Bill 940 and Assembly Bill 2371.

10. Letter received October 30, 2000, from Senator Anthony Bucco RE: Resolution adopted by Mt. Olive Township Council regarding Senate Bill 450 and Assembly Bill 2332

11. Letter received October 30, 2000, from Assemblyman Richard H. Bagger RE: Resolution adopted by Mt. Olive Township regarding Assembly bill 2371 and Senate Bill 940.

12. Letter received October 30, 2000, from Senator Richard H. Bagger RE: Resolution adopted by Mt. Olive Township Council regarding Assembly Bill 2332.

13. Letter received October 31, 2000, from Assemblyman E. Scott Garrett RE: Resolution adopted by Mt. Olive Township Council regarding Assembly Bill 2332.

League of Municipalities

14. Notice received October 23, 2000, from Margaret Nordstrom RE: League Seminar/Luncheon.

15. Letter received October 27, 2000, from New Jersey State League of Municipalities RE: New Membership Service - League Grant Advisory Service.

16. Notice received October 30, 2000, from New Jersey State League of Municipalities RE: League Seminar.

DOT/DEP/Permits/LOIs

17. Notice received October 23, 2000, from NJ Transit RE: Fiscal Year 20001 Request for Federal Financial assistance under the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century.

18. Letter of Interpretation: Absence Determination received October 26, 2000, from EcolSciences, Inc RE: Block 2507, Lot 1. (299 Sandshore Road - The Rose House)

19. Permit received October 27, 2000, from NJ DEP issued to New Jersey American Water Company ITC South, for construction of additions and alterations to existing water distribution system and for the distribution of water for potable purposes from said works.

20. Permit received November 6, 2000, from NJ DEP issued to NJ Foreign Trade Zone for the construction and operation of a sanitary sewer extension to serve a retail/commercial center and restaurants known as “ITC Crossing.”

Correspondence from Organizations/Committees/Boards

21. Local Finance Notice received October 23, 2000, RE: Financial Management Improvement Program and the GAAP Pilot Program.

22. October, 2000 Newsletter received October 23, 2000 from Mt. Olive Soccer Club (MOSC).

23. Local Finance Notice received October 27, 2000, from NJ Department of Community Affairs, Division of Local Government Services.

24. 2000 Update received October 31, 2000, from New Jersey Low-Level Radioactive Waste Disposal Plan.

25. Letter received November 1, 2000, from Morris County Solid Waste Advisory Council RE: Revised Morris County Solid Waste Management Plan.

26. Minutes received November 13, 2000, from the Morris County Planning Board, RE: Regular Meeting of September 21, 2000.

27. Minutes received November 13, 2000, from the Morris County Planning Board, RE: Regular Meeting of October 5, 2000.

Correspondence Regarding Tort Claims/Verified Notice of Lien Claim/Petitions

28. Letter received October 26, 2000, from Lasser Hochman, LLC RE: Interverse Enterprises, Inc. v. Township of Mount Olive et al.

29. Letter received November 6, 2000, from The Dockrell Beach Yacht Club, Inc. RE: Information/Discovery Request.

30. Summons received November 9, 2000, RE: F. William Braun v. Estate of Barbara Dreyer; Lauren A. and Louis Ann Kretzmer; and the Township of Mt. Olive. (Twp. Ord. 3-97, Vacation of High Street.)

Land Use/Development Matters

31. Letter received November 7, 2000, from Rettew Associates RE: Land Acquisition Project, Block 2300 Lot 7. (370 Route 46 - by Myrtle Avenue)

COAH

32. October COAH Newsletter received October 26, 2000.

Correspondence from Cable Networks/Utilities

33. Letter received October 27, 2000, from New Jersey BPU RE: Response to Township Letter/Resolution regarding the rate increase petitions of New Jersey Natural Gas Company and Verizon New Jersey.

34. Letter received October 30, 2000, from Morris County MUA RE: Recommendation that Planning Board Approvals include Solid Waste Management and Recycling Requirements.

35. Comcast FAX received November 2, 2000, RE: November 2000 programs.

36. Minutes received November 3, 2000, from the MSA Regular Meeting of October 4, 2000.

37. Letter received November 6, 2000, from GPU Energy RE: Intentions with respect to the electrical service to the new International Trade Zone South Project.

President Sohl stated that we had received 38 items of correspondence and asked Council if there were any comments on same.

ETHICS BOARD STATUS REPORT

President Sohl: As you know, the Council passed an Ordinance that would have ended the concept, or the use of a local Ethics Board predicated on the current Mt. Olive Code. That was then Petitioned to be put to a Public Question. The Question was overwhelmingly defeated, which meant that the Code should stay the same, we should have a Local Ethics Board. Notwithstanding that action, several of us were down in Atlantic City last week attending the New Jersey League of Municipalities and one of the items on their Agenda was a Local Ethics Code Seminar. Which I took the opportunity to attend. One of the people discussing this was Patricia McNamara, Executive Secretary of the Local Finance Board. She had available to us copies of the State Code, which, at least from the very little discussion I had with her, constitutes the enabling legislation which should be the basis for which the Mt. Olive Code then derives. I upon looking at that Code, I noticed several things that were inconsistent with the current Mt. Olive Code–the Board itself, the complexion and make-up of that Board is significantly different than the State enabling legislation as is codified by our Code. And that probably stems from the fact that the Mt. Olive Code was adopted several months prior to the State enabling legislation. And, that was in 1991. As a result of that, and several other items that seem to be discrepancies, I’ve written a letter to the Local Finance Board, specifically to Patricia McNamara asking her to review our Code in light of the State enabling legislation so that we can, in fact, take whatever remedies might be needed to make it consistent with the State so that it, in effect is a proper code and that we can then recognize the will of the people to have a Local Ethics Board. That is where it is at right now. That letter was drafted by me and sent off by e-mail on Monday. And I have a copy to be distributed by First Class Mail. So, that’s where it’s at at the moment. I will do nothing until I hear back from the Local Finance Board as to the status of our Code.

Mayor Licitra: Bill, I do have something that I would like to put on the Record. Normally, I get these letters–and I should be sharing them with you–I do come to you at times, at the end of the year–certain Department Heads, certain people when we’re looking at raises, I think we’ve been getting more and more of these letters, and I would like to read one to you. It’s from a past employee. It says about something about the people that work in this Township. If you bear with me, it’s three paragraphs. It’s written to me–“I am writing this letter to advise you that after a great deal of consideration, it is with great regret that I must resign my position as Secretary to the Director of the Mt. Olive Health Department and Board of Health Secretary. The past few months I was allotted to spend at home only drew one conclusion for me and that is my family must come first. This is the most difficult decision I have ever faced in the 16+ years I have worked full time. Mt. Olive is one of the best places I have ever worked, and Frank Wilpert and all of my coworkers are the reason I enjoyed coming to work every day. Mt. Olive Township residents are very fortunate to have such qualified individuals striving to provide great services and working to make their town better. I cannot even begin to thank you, Catherine and Frank for supporting my decision to take a six-month leave of absence. If anyone ever felt like a family member working in Mt. Olive, it would undoubtedly be me. I appreciate your concern for my family’s well-being and it will not be forgotten. If down the road when my children are older and in school full-time, I will certainly not hesitate to seek employment with Mt. Olive Township. On another note, I cannot say enough about Frank Wilpert. I know you realize what an asset he is to Mt. Olive Township. Frank not only gets the job done right, but takes on much more than most people with no complaints. I only hope Frank is afforded the opportunity to choose a replacement for me that has complete knowledge and understanding of the Health Department’s needs and someone that can fulfill the secretarial duties to the Director of Health & Senior Services. Thank you for your time, and thank you again for your support during this difficult time. Karen Feeley.”

President Sohl: Thank you, Mayor. It’s a pleasure to get that kind of feedback.

ORDINANCES FOR PUBLIC HEARING

Ord. #41-2000 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive, in the County of Morris, and State of New Jersey, Granting Municipal Consent to Oakwood Village Sewerage Associates, L.L.C., to Construct, Operate, Manage and Maintain a Sewage Collection, Treatment and Disposal Plant and System to Service Certain Tracts of Land Lying and Situate in the Township of Mount Olive, County of Morris and State of New Jersey. (Westminster Realty/Dara Estates)

President Sohl opened the Public Hearing on Ord. #41-2000

Mr. Michael Pane, Jr. Esq: I’m here for Oakwood Village Sewerage Associates. Actually, I don’t have a presentation, I’m just here in case any members of the Council have any questions.

President Sohl closed the Public Hearing on Ord. #41-2000

Mr. Scapicchio moved for Adoption and Final Passage on Ord. #41-2000 and Mr. Heymann seconded the motion.

Mr. Scapicchio: Do you know how, if any impact this additional development is going to have on the Mrs. Moccio property? And, are you familiar with the property, and that situation?

Mr. Pane, Esq.: To be honest with you, I’m not sure which property it is.

Mr. Scapicchio: It’s the vacant residential piece of property that is below this proposed development.

Mr. Pane, Esq.: To my knowledge, it shouldn’t have any impact.

Mayor Licitra: Dave, are you privy to the Planning Board Hearings?

Mr. Scapicchio: No, I’m not.

Mayor Licitra: Mrs. Moccio came up on a couple of occasions. First occasion, we allotted more time–even though we didn’t have to–for her to get another lawyer to prove her case, and to present it. So, we felt we were being very lenient on that. Knowing the situation, myself, I wanted her to be heard. She had absolutely no problem–I can state that, the second time around. She was very happy with whatever went on, whatever negotiations went on between her and the people from Oakwood. Because I was very cognizant, as you were very cognizant of what went on over there. But, I can tell you, she was pleased whatever it was, and she thanked us very much.

Mr. Scapicchio: Okay

President Sohl: Any other discussion?

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Sohl declared Ord. #41-2000 as Passed on Second Reading.

Ord. #31-2000 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive Vacating a Portion of Flanders Netcong Road. (Revised ITC South Road Project)

President Sohl opened the Public Hearing on Ord. #31-2000

President Sohl closed the Public Hearing on Ord. #31-2000

Mrs. Kelly moved for Adoption and Final Passage on Ord. # 31-2000 and Mr. Scapicchio seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Sohl declared Ord. #31-2000 as Passed on Second Reading.

Ord. #32-2000 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive Making the Provisions of Subtitle One of Title 39 Various Traffic Regulations Applicable to the Sutton Plaza Shopping Center and Regulating the Use of Said Roadways, Streets, Driveways, and Parking Lots by Motor Vehicles.

President Sohl opened the Public Hearing on Ord. #32-2000

President Sohl closed the Public Hearing on Ord. #32-2000

Mr. Scapicchio moved for Adoption and Final Passage on Ord. # 32-2000 and Mr. Heymann seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Sohl declared Ord. #32-2000 as Passed on Second Reading.

Ord #42-2000 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive Establishing Speed Limits on Portions of Goldmine Road and Flanders Netcong Road.

President Sohl opened the Public Hearing on Ord. #42-2000

President Sohl closed the Public Hearing on Ord. #42-2000

Mr. Rattner moved for Adoption and Final Passage on Ord. #42-2000 and Mr. Guenther seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Sohl declared Ord. #42-2000 as Passed on Second Reading.

Ord. #43-2000 An Ordinance of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Sale of Block 5300, Lot 18 C8.2A to Nicholas Leonard and Santina Minervini for $150,000. (Sale of old Police Substation)

President Sohl opened the Public Hearing on Ord. #43-2000

President Sohl closed the Public Hearing on Ord. #43-2000

Mr. Heymann moved for Adoption and Final Passage on Ord. #43-2000 and Mr. Guenther seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed by the majority, Exception: Mr. Scapicchio ABSTAINED

President Sohl declared Ord. #43-2000 as Passed on Second Reading.

Ord. #44-2000 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive Prohibiting Vehicles of a Gross Weight of More Than 8,000 Pounds (4 Tons) or Over on Various Streets Within the Township. (amendment to Ord. #31-97)

President Sohl opened the Public Hearing on Ord. #44-2000

President Sohl closed the Public Hearing on Ord. #44-2000

Mr. Guenther moved for Adoption and Final Passage on Ord. # 44-2000and Mr. Heymann seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Sohl declared Ord. #44-2000 as Passed on Second Reading.

Ord. #45-2000 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive Prohibiting Parking at all Times on the Cul-de-sac of Janice Drive.

President Sohl opened the Public Hearing on Ord. #45-2000

Mr. Bonte: What prompted this?

President Sohl: We were getting complaints from the residents.

Mr. Bonte: What was the nature of those complaints?

President Sohl: People were parking and leaving vehicles there for lengthy periods of time.

Mr. Bonte: Is that a violation of law to park your vehicle on the road and leave it there for “lengthy periods of time.”

Mr. Dorsey: It is after the adoption of this Ordinance.

Mr. Bonte: Excuse me, Mr. Dorsey, I wasn’t asking you for your opinion at this time.

Mr. Dorsey: I’m not giving an opinion, I’m giving a legal determination.

Mr. Bonte: Well, that is an inappropriate comment. I’d like to ask the question again. Is it illegal to park on a Township street for a lengthy period of time?

President Sohl: The point is, in that cul-de-sac, was where the residents were complaining and we are honoring the desire of the residents.

Mr. Bonte: But they’re complaining about a public street, paid for with public taxpayer dollars, maintained with public dollars, and they don’t like somebody parking there.

President Sohl: No, we will also prohibit public parking on all the cul-de-sacs where school buses have to turn around, etc.

Mr. Bonte: Before we get to that issue, I’d like to get back to the issue of banning parking on a public street because a resident who may live on that street doesn’t want somebody parked in front of their house. Since when is that illegal? What is the basis for declaring this illegal?

Mr. Heymann: Wasn’t this the complaint–I think it was a specific request that there was a lot of hunting going on and they thought that it was becoming just too much down there with that many vehicles being parked down there during the hunting season. That’s what prompted their request. I agree with you to some extent I wouldn’t do that–I wouldn’t do this to every cul-de-sac, but these are the only people who have come here, and they had more of a specific request.

Mr. Bonte: But since when does a municipality ban parking on a public street because homeowners who live on that street don’t like it? This could start every where in Town–and in all towns. “Oh, we don’t want somebody parking on this street.” Or, “We don’t want a bunch of cars in front of our house.” These are public streets.

Mr. Heymann: Well, I have a sound, basic reason for it.

Mr. Bonte: Well, what is the “sound, basic” reason?

Mr. Heymann: I told you. The reason was they objected to the amount of hunters that were parking in that area and going across their property and into the woods to hunt.

Mr. Bonte: Well, if they’re going across private property, there are laws that already control that.

Mr. Dorsey: Ron, you’re wasting your time.

Mr. Heymann: I answered the question–

Mr. Bonte: Mr. Dorsey, would you allow the elected officials to answer the questions–

Mr. Dorsey: I’m letting him do it, and you’re out of order.

President Sohl: You’re entitled to your opinion.

Mr. Bonte: No, I think it’s more than a matter of opinion. I think it’s a matter of the legal use of the streets and the parking spaces on those streets. Normally, parking is excluded for some type of safety reasons, where parking is hazardous. Now, I don’t see how parking is hazardous or unsafe in a cul-de-sac.

Mr. Rattner: Actually, parking on any cul-de-sac shouldn’t be allowed. I just got one on my road and I believe Dave got one on his road, and yet, we’ve already gotten complaints from some of the school bus drivers that the radius is still very difficult for a school bus to make the turn-around. Which means that any parking on a cul-de-sac will reduce the available roadway for turning around. The whole idea, and the way that the cul-de-sacs were designed were so a truck, or bus, or that type of vehicle could turn–including emergency vehicles. With cars parked in the cul-de-sac, it could not be done. And I think we have to look at every one of them.

Mr. Bonte: Have we heard of any other complaints from other vehicles not being able to turn around? And, do the residents understand that this law can be applied towards them? That when they have a party–or for whatever reason, this doesn’t become their property.

Mr. Guenther: Rich, I’m reading this, and it says, “On the cul-de-sac portion...” Rich, it’s not the whole street. It’s not capricious–

Mr. Bonte: No, I think it is capricious–

Mr. Guenther: No, it’s not–

President Sohl: You’re entitled to your opinion, Rich.

Mr. Guenther: With a safety issue on the turn around–they can park on the rest of the street, Rich.

Mr. Bonte: And once they start doing that, those residents will be back in here again because you haven’t addressed the problem.

Mr. Guenther: Then they’d have to cite a reason for that, then your argument holds true.

Mr. Bonte: I think you’re setting a precedent here by reacting to people that don’t want somebody parked in front of their house. Thank you.

President Sohl: Anyone else from the Public?

President Sohl closed the Public Hearing on Ord. #45-2000

Mr. Scapicchio moved for Adoption and Final Passage on Ord. # 45-2000and Mr. Heymann seconded the motion.

Mr. Guenther: In general terms, I think some of these ordinances that we pass, we have so many that go on the books that are not enforced. From that standpoint, these things should be looked at. They get to be kind of frivolous. Who’s going to enforce this? Are we going to send the police up there for a $50 fine? I think we have to be careful in passing these kinds of Ordinances that are really quite unenforceable as we go along.

ROLL CALL: Passed by the majority, Exception: Mr. Guenther voted NO

President Sohl declared Ord. #45-2000 as Passed on Second Reading.

ORDINANCES FOR FIRST READING (December 5, 2000, Public Hearing Date)

Ord. #46-2000 Bond Ordinance Providing for Various Capital Improvements of the Township of Mount Olive, in the County of Morris, New Jersey, Appropriating the Aggregate Amount of $360,000 Therefor and Authorizing the Issuance of $342,000 Bonds or Notes of the Township to Finance Part of the Cost Thereof. (computer upgrade and refurbishing of Budd Lake Fire Ladder Truck)

Mrs. Kelly moved that Ord. #46-2000 be introduced by title and passed on First Reading and that it be scheduled for Adoption after a Public Hearing on December 5, 2000 at 7:30 p.m. Mr. Scapicchio seconded the Motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

Ord. #47-2000 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive Banning All Unregistered, Unlicenced Vehicles and All ATV’s from Turkey Brook Park.

Mr. Heymann moved that Ord. #47 -2000 be introduced by title and passed on First Reading and that it be scheduled for Adoption after a Public Hearing on December 5, 2000 at 7:30 p.m. Mr. Guenther seconded the Motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

CONSENT RESOLUTIONS AGENDA:

Resolutions on the Consent Agenda List are considered to be routine and non-controversial by the Township Council and will be approved by one motion (one vote). There will be no separate discussion or debate on each of these resolutions except for the possibility of brief clarifying statements which may be offered. If one or more Council member requests, any individual resolution on the Consent Agenda may be removed from the Consent Agenda List and acted on separately.

Mr. Scapicchio: I would like to remove #2 from Consent.

Mr. Guenther: I would like to remove #13, and #5.

1. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Defense to the Lawsuit Entitled Inverse Enterprises, Inc. Vs. Township of Mount Olive, etal. (Rezoning Litigation)

3. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Reducing the Number of EDU’s Assigned to St. Jude’s Church, Block 3807, Lot 1 for Sewer Assessment and Sewer Annual Charges.

4. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Endorsing Assembly Bill No. 126. (funding mechanism for snow removal surplus)

6. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Business Administrator to Execute a Sanitary Sewer Extension Permit Application for Lakeview Estates.

7. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Business Administrator to Execute a Treatment Works Approval Modification Application for Oakwood Village.

8. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Appropriating the Sum of $1,500 to the Coalition of Municipalities Attempting to Keep the Dover Campus of Northwest Covenant Hospital Open for Various Essential Services.

9. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Execution of a Developer’s Agreement Between the Township and Geralyn Palumbo. (two lots on Wilstow Drive)

10. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Execution of a Developer’s Agreement Between the Township and Motiva Enterprises, LLC. (Rt. 46 Texaco)

11. Resolution of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Use of Various Morris County Cooperative Purchasing Contracts.

12. Resolution of the Township of Mount Olive Providing for the Transfer of 2000 Budget Appropriations for the Current and Water Utility Funds.

14. Resolution to Amend the Capital Budget. (companion to Bond Ord. #46-2000)

15. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Confirming the Sale of Lot 7, Block 3305 to Michelle Laffler. (North Mt. Olive Road)

PUBLIC PORTION ON CONSENT RESOLUTIONS

Mr. Bonte: I have a question on #6. This is called a “Sanitary Sewer Extension Permit” for Lakeview Estates? This is a new development?

Mr. Dorsey: Sandy, you requested it?

Mr. Kaplan: I requested it per a request from the Township Engineer.

Mr. Bonte: Were these 41 EDUs originally figured in to the original plan for the Budd Lake Sewer System? This is not an extension or addition to that?

Mrs. Kelly: I believe it’s just a correction.

Mr. Rattner: The “extension” is because they have to build a pipeline, but they are property fronted on a road that a sewer main was going on, so we had to include them in it if they wanted it, and they reserved at the time–they anticipated maybe 100 EDUs. This is what the Planning Board actually approved.

Mr. Bonte: So it definitely was part of their original plan?

Mr. Rattner: Yes.

Mr. Bonte: Okay. And, #4, I would just to encourage you to pass that.

President Sohl: Anyone else? All right, I close the meeting to the Public.

Mr. Heymann moved for approval of Resolutions #1, #3, #4, #6 - #12, #14 and #15, and Mr. Rattner seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed by the majority, Exception: Mr. Guenther ABSTAINED on #8.

President Sohl: I now open the meeting to the Public on the Non-consent Resolutions–and then we will vote on them individually.

Mr. Bonte: On #2, is this not in reality a contract that would have a “Not To Exceed” value of $676,000 as opposed to $500,000?

Mr. Dorsey: I think the answer to that is–I assume you’re referring to the initial contract that was for $95,000?

Mr. Bonte: I’m referring to the Resolution itself. It’s terms about the contract being $500,000, plus reimburseable expenses, plus a fee–an Administrative Fee of 10% on those reimburseable expenses not to exceed $16,000.

Mr. Dorsey: That would make it $530-some thousand.

Mr. Bonte: Am I missing something?

Mr. Dorsey: Probably, but in this case, you’re right, it comes up to $500, plus the reimburseable expenses that are not to exceed $30,000.

Mr. Bonte: Well, if the Administrative Fee is 10% on those reimbursable expenses, and that can’t exceed $16,000, then the base would have to be $160,000 to have an Administrative Fee of $16,000.

Mr. Rattner: Rich, that’s two different things. That $16,000 changed–we got another revised contract with a lot of different items that we went back and forth. That is basically for travel and per diem expenses for people from the firm that is based in North Carolina. The 10% is their actual expenses–they’re allowed to put 10% on to that.

Mr. Bonte: Maybe we should fix the language in this Resolution to clearly state that number in this Resolution. Thank you.

President Sohl: Thank you. Anyone else? I will close the meeting to the Public.

2. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Awarding a Contract to Olympvs International AG in the Sum of $500,571. (Turkey Brook Park)

Mr. Heymann moved for approval of the Resolution and Mr. Guenther seconded the motion.

Mr. Scapicchio: Can somebody just highlight the differences in this proposal from the one that we reviewed at our last workshop discussion on this issue? This wasn’t in our Friday packet.

Mr. Dorsey: The principal difference is, this Contract now reflects the fact that Olympvs now has under contract Stewart Engineering and Kline Davis Architects as part of the design professionals. The Subcontracts are now incorporated by reference in this Contract. Then there’s enumeration of specific services that weren’t enumerated before to be done by the engineering firm or the design firm.

ROLL CALL: Passed unanimously

5. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Providing that the Payment of $133,334 from the FTZ for Vacated Lands be Utilized to Offset Taxes in the Year 2001.

Mr. Scapicchio moved for approval of the Resolution and Mr. Heymann seconded the motion.

Mr. Guenther: I just wanted this off the Consent Resolutions because I wanted the Public to be aware of it. I have no other comment.

ROLL CALL: Passed unanimously

13. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing a Dedication by Rider for Donations - Turkey Brook Development.

Mr. Guenther moved for approval of the Resolution and Mrs. Kelly seconded the motion.

Mr. Guenther: I don’t understand what this is?

Mr. Kaplan: It’s a donation of monies to the Township for a specific purpose. It was not anticipated at the time the Budget was adopted.

President Sohl: So we’re putting it in the 2000 Budget specifically for use in Turkeybrook.

Mr. Kaplan: As it was donated.

ROLL CALL: Passed unanimously

MOTIONS

1. Bill List. ATTACHED

Mr. Heymann moved for approval of the Bills and Mr. Scapicchio seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed unanimously

2. Approval of Raffle Applications #964 and #965 for St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church; Approval of Raffle Application #966 for Budd Lake Volunteer Fire Department; Approval of Raffle Application #967 for the Parents Club of Mt. Olive.

Mr. Guenther moved for approval of the motion and Mr. Scapicchio seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed unanimously

COUNCIL REPORTS

President Sohl: I’ll just comment, there were several of us that went to the League of Municipalities, we spent all afternoon Wednesday, all day Thursday picking up information. I thought it was kind of interesting. I think the Record had a “cheer” and a “jeer” and the fact that we never set foot inside the casinos in two evenings speaks something for what we got done down there.

Mayor Licitra: I had asked this Council for a Subcommittee for this discussion of the new Library Building. I would like you to appoint someone.

President Sohl: I’m on that Building Committee. Sandy (Kaplan) is on that Committee, Sherry (Jenkins) is on that Committee. The Planner is on that Committee. If someone on the Council wants to be on that Committee–if you want to have a separate Committee itself, I don’t have a problem with that either–although I don’t see necessarily the need for that.

Mayor Licitra: I think at some point we should hold a discussion on which way we’re going.

President Sohl: We’re waiting for their plans.

Mayor Licitra: They’re looking at a certain figure, and they’re going forward on that certain figure and I think the Council has to be aware of that because it may not be the figure we want to go with.

President Sohl: Let me state–and Sandy, you were there and you heard my speech. Hopefully, the elements of that speech were conveyed. I pointed out to the people over there that for the Year 2001, the number that had previously been put on the table in the planning process–in fact Mr. Casey was the one that put it up on this board over here last year, was $3.5 million. And that additions to that had to come from some other mechanism we would not have a budget capitalization above $3.5 million.

Mayor Licitra: Are they going forward with a $5.4 million Library?

Mr. Kaplan: They’re going forward with the design of a certain size. But, what the cost of the Library is, I don’t think any of us know until the architect comes back with that element. He did say he would come back with some cost estimates. The cost estimates that we’re hearing is from non-professionals.

President Sohl: Correct.

Mayor Licitra: At the meeting the other night, you advised them?

President Sohl: This was Saturday. Sandy, what I just said–is that–

Mr. Kaplan: I think we both said pretty much the same thing. And in the 2001 it could not be more than 3.5.

President Sohl: And there was some potential discussion, given timeframe, they may not even come to us for that kind of money, or funding in that Budget, depending on how things go up.

Mr. Kaplan: Basically, there were other scenarios that came up that have to be discussed beyond that point. I would not commit beyond that point, nor would you.

President Sohl: Right.

Mayor Licitra: So I understand it now, there was no commitment of more that $3.5 million.

President Sohl: I conveyed exactly what we discussed here, in the Year 2001 Budget we had targeted $3.5 million as capital. If there’s another building they get from the State from some other means, those are numbers we don’t know. Nobody is sitting here with a blank check.

PUBLIC PORTION

President Sohl: I now open the meeting to the Public. Is there anyone who would like to address the Council on any matter?

Mr. Bonte: About a year ago, we addressed Water & Sewer as far as Revenues versus Expenses. We were going to put a plan into place so that this year there would be a formalized procedure to find ourselves in November with a review of water and sewer revenues and expenses for next year–what occurred this year, and what next year is going to look like so we could set the appropriate rates before the end of the year. I know we never put the formalized plan into law. I’m just wondering if we know what the analysis of the water & sewer utility looks like. I know a lot of residents received letters in the last week threatening them that their homes were going to be put up for tax sale if they didn’t pay a bill which wasn’t even due yet. And it was implied in that letter–

President Sohl: Rich, did we not send out a letter of apology to those residents? That letter went out in error. It should have gone out to a handful of people, it went, unfortunately, to everybody.

Mr. Bonte: It was a nasty letter–

President Sohl: Of course it was–

Mr. Bonte: But it went out before the due date.

Mr. Kaplan: The letter was written and ordered to go out to only those residents who were at least two quarters in arrears. By accident, it was sent out to everyone, the first mailing.

Mr. Bonte: That’s quite an accident considering that 2,000 copies of that letter had to be printed out, and all that postage–I mean, a lot of things consciously had to happen to accidently send it out–but that’s not my point. My point is, that that letter implies–I’m not concerned that the letter, that it went out wrong, but the letter implied that there were severe budgetary issues in the Water & Sewer Department. I guess my concern is, it’s now the end of November, and we will not be able to have in place a revised rate schedule for 2001 by law, which we’re supposed to have because we haven’t done it yet. And we need “x” number of days to announce it, and then for it to become law. So, what I’m asking is, what I’ve asked for year after year after year. Have we put together an analyses of water & sewer operation for Water & Sewer Utility for the Year 2000 to know what our

Mr. Bonte (cont’d): expenses have been to date, what our revenues have been, what our projected expenses and revenues are for the rest of this year, what next year’s expenses and revenues are going to be, and what the rates should be for next year. Have we done that yet?

President Sohl: Sandy? I know Sherry (Jenkins) has been doing analysis–

Mr. Kaplan: Sherry is working on that at the present time. That’s one of the reasons the letter did go out to those people as I have stated–for these two quarters in arrears. Has she completed it? I can’t say at this particular point, but I know she is working on it in order to project forward. It was our intent by sending out that letter to try and get these people that are in arrears to wake up and pay up–pay what’s due so that we can have our collection rate at a level that it should be.

Mr. Bonte: I just want to assure that the Water & Sewer Utility is operating on a neutral basis. And the only way that one can do that is to know where we’re at and establish the appropriate rates for the upcoming year in a timely manner. So I’d like to see somebody get a handle on that. I hadn’t planned to discuss this other issue at all, but since you brought it up, Mr. Sohl–

President Sohl: Don’t kill the messenger.

Mr. Bonte: Well, I think the messenger may have taken some action that he shouldn’t have, which is, “State Law regarding Local Boards of Ethics require the Local Board of Ethics be established first. The Board of Ethics is then convened, and within 60 or 90 days....”

President Sohl: 90 days.

Mr. Bonte: “...promulgate a Code of Ethics for the Community.”

President Sohl: Correct.

Mr. Bonte: So, I think the first thing that needs to be done to carry out the criteria of the law, which is establish the Board. That the Board then take a look at our current ethics law, decide if it needs any changes presented to this Body. This Body then votes on it, or doesn’t. It gets revised–

President Sohl: Rich, we don’t get to vote on it.

Mr. Bonte: Okay, that’s even better.

President Sohl: The Board has its right. It is then–if you read the law, and that’s what led me to the discussion I had with Ms. McNamara–and in fact the Ethics Board is not consistent–the State allows six people–ours calls for seven—the complexion and make up is different–

Mr. Bonte: But why are we giving the State a current copy of our Ethics Ordinance for them to review?

Mr. Guenther: They stated in that seminar that we attended that our Code had to conform to the State.

President Sohl: Not the Code itself–

Mr. Bonte: You can’t have a Code, Bernie, before you have an Ethics Board. The Law states that.

President Sohl: That’s absolutely not true. Because, what you have to do first is enable–and I don’t want to spend a lot of time on this, but I will–“Each Municipality of the State may, by Ordinance, establish a Municipal Ethics Board consisting of...” and then it goes on to describe that. You have enable that according to, and be consistent with this State Document. We are not consistent with this document now. And I’m asking her how do we become consistent with this document. If you want a copy of the letter the Clerk can give you a copy tomorrow. And let me leave one comment to you, also, “Additional background...on November 7, 2000 a Public Question, which, had it been approved would have eliminated the Local Municipal Board was overwhelming not approved by the Voters. Given the Public Support to retain a Local Municipal Ethics Board, the Governing Body desires to properly and legally do so.” Period. What else would you like me to assure you of, Rich?

Mr. Bonte: I would like to be assured that the State Law will be followed, which is, “We will comprise an Ethics Board in accordance with the State requirements, and then allow that Board to then do what the State says they’re supposed to do. Not go to the State Government with a document that wasn’t prepared by a Local Ethics Board. They can’t pass on that document that wasn’t prepared in accordance with the State Law.

President Sohl: Let me tell you, based on our conversation what I suspect the State will respond with. Is that the current Mt. Olive Ethics Section 113 is wholly–I won’t say “illegal” but “inconsistent with the State, and they will give us their language which will allow us to establish that Ethics Board in the proper form. Which is to mirror the State requirements.

Mr. Bonte: Well then why do we need to go ask them what they’ve already given us?

President Sohl: I’m just asking us to do it right. If I introduced an Ordinance tonight to vacate the Ordinance in Mt. Olive, you’d be here–I don’t know what you’d be doing–you’d probably be furious.

Mr. Bonte: Well, I’m not real pleased right now in what I think–what appears to be circumventing both the Faulkner Act and the intent of the enabling Legislation by the State that says you create a Local Board of Ethics in accordance with that document which I have a copy of. And then they prepare a Local Code of Ethics.

President Sohl: And our Ethics Board is not consistent with that State Enabling Legislation.

Mr. Bonte: Well, you can do that–you can do that immediately. I’m not going to oppose you on that.

Mr. Spino: That’s what he’s doing.

Mr. Bonte: No, he’s not.

Mr. Guenther: He’s asking for the State for their opinion to make it–

Mr. Bonte: But the authority is in the State Law now, Bernie.

President Sohl: And I’m asking him–

Mr. Guenther: We’re not the experts in formulating these things. We want to make sure–he said it had to at least meet the standards of the State. So we’re asking her to look at it. She’s the one that adjudicates all these issues of Ethics on the State level. She’s the one that’s headed up this Department.

Mr. Bonte: I understand that, Bernie, but there is a State Law that specifically tells you how to set this up. It’s not rocket science–

President Sohl: I agree. I’m asking for her opinion. I will ask you one question, Rich, if you know this document so well–the State Law, why didn’t you make statements about what is in our current Ordinance which is inconsistent with that State Law? I mean, you’ve been preaching to us for the last six months about it.

Mr. Bonte: It was brought to your attention numerous times by myself and others–

President Sohl: And the part that’s in there about what ethics should be in Mt. Olive is not valid because it was not promulgated by an Ethics Board.

Mr. Bonte: We made that point, Bill, when you were trying to abolish the Board. Mr. Fisher was here that night, regarding the fact that our Ethics Code is stricter than the State’s–which Code would be enforced if we took the issue to Trenton, and Mr. Fisher said most likely the Code we have here.

President Sohl: Mt. Olive’s Code was never approved by the State.

Mr. Bonte: Well, I understand that, and we have brought that to this Council’s attention on numerous occasions over the last six months.

President Sohl: So now you’re questioning my sending it to them to review?

Mr. Bonte: Because it’s wasting time. That’s what it’s doing. The Law is very clear. You’ve been given direction by the Public. The Public says, “We want a Board.” You have a State Law with enabling legislation to create a Board of Ethics. And then that Board has certain responsibilities–

President Sohl: I agree with you.

Mr. Bonte: And within 90 days it must promulgate a Local Code of Ethics. Is that correct?

President Sohl: Well–yes, 90 days they promulgate it, there’s a Hearing within 30days, etc., etc., etc.

Mr. Bonte: So let’s create the Board in accordance with the State Legislation.

President Sohl: We’re introducing an Ordinance next week to vacate completely Chapter 113, and replace it with enabling legislation. You won’t have a problem with it.

Mr. Bonte: How could I have a problem with that? That’s the State Law.

President Sohl: Why didn’t you suggest that a long time ago?

Mr. Bonte: You guys had something you wanted to do–and that was, “get this out of local control.” That’s what you wanted to do, Bill. We want local control, and the State says, “Create the Board and let that Board design the Local Code of Ethics.” I don’t see–how can you send a document that basically is not a legal document to the State, now, for review.

President Sohl: So you admit our own Code is not legal.

Mr. Bonte: Well, do you admit it’s not legal? Your attorney advised you to pass this Code. Why would he advise you to pass a Code that’s not legal.

President Sohl: When was this–

Mr. Bonte: 1991.

President Sohl: In 1991 it was legal for at least three months.

Mr. Bonte: No it wasn’t.

President Sohl: Yes it was, because that State Code was only passed three or four months after ours was passed. We superceded it then.

Mr. Bonte: Why didn’t you ever establish your own Board then?

President Sohl: Water over the dam.

Mr. Bonte: Water over the dam. Okay, let’s do it right now. The law says establish this Board. Let the Board do its thing.

President Sohl: I suspect I will get sample Legislation back from the State which will allow us to do exactly–

Mr. Bonte: I believe that book you have is sample Legislation.

President Sohl: It doesn’t provide an example Ordinance. That’s all I asked for, Rich.

Mr. Scapicchio: Can I just add–I was down there with Bill, and I would just like to represent to the Public that’s here tonight Mr. Sohl’s concern with respect to that ethics and one of the reasons the three of us went to that Ethics Seminar, and that was that Mr. Sohl’s concern was that we move on this and adopt the enabling Ordinance as soon as possible, and the Ordinance we do adopt is the correct Ordinance to the language required by the State. So I can represent Mr. Sohl’s effort and the concern of everybody that I’ve spoken to on this Council has been to try and get this whole process done as quickly as we possibly could. Rich, that is the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. And Mr. Sohl’s efforts did not in any way try to stop, delay, or halt this Ethics Board and that Board from preparing an Ethics Code. If you’re not happy with that, I don’t think anything we Mr. Scapicchio (cont’d):can tell you tonight is going to make you happy. But we want to make absolutely sure that the Ordinance that we put forth is the correct Ordinance so that we can do this one time and move forward. Establishing the Ethics Board so that that Board can then establish an Ethics Code for Mt. Olive Township.

Mr. Bonte: Does anybody know if there is a timeframe from when a Public Question like this is passed and it has to be implemented?

President Sohl: I’m not sure–you’re telling us to implement something which we already said is no longer valid.

Mr. Bonte: But what is valid is the Local Board of Ethics.

President Sohl: The intent of the Public to have a Local Board of Ethics.

Mr. Bonte: The Voters specifically voted on that paragraph. The point is, there should be a speedy establishment of this Board as required by State Law, and consistent with the will of the Voters. I would expect that before the year is out, this Board should be appointed.

President Sohl: That’s impossible.

Mr. Bonte: Well, you may think it’s impossible, but I can’t see why that’s impossible.

President Sohl: Just the time it takes to pass Ordinances. It may be possible, but I doubt it. It’s almost assembled.

Mr. Bonte: We’ll see.

President Sohl: Anyone else from the Public? If not, I close the meeting to the Public. We will adjourn this meeting and go directly to a workshop meeting.

Motion made for adjournment. All in Favor, None Opposed. The Meeting was adjourned at 9:15pm.

______________________

William H. Sohl

Council President

I, LISA M. LASHWAY, Township Clerk of the Township of Mount Olive do hereby certify that the foregoing Minutes is a true and correct copy of the Minutes approved at a legally convened meeting of the Mount Olive Township Council duly held on January 23, 2001.

________________________

LISA M. LASHWAY

Mount Olive Township Clerk

 

 

 
 

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