TOWNSHIP COUNCIL PUBLIC MEETING MINUTES
- May 8, 2012
The Public Meeting of the Mount Olive Township Council was called to Order at 7:13 pm by Council President Roman.
OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT ANNOUNCEMENT
Mrs. Lashway: According to the Open Public Meetings Act, adequate notice of this meeting has been given to the Daily Record. Notice has been posted at the Municipal Building, 204 Flanders-Drakestown Road, Mount Olive Township, New Jersey and notices were sent to those requesting the same.
Present: Mrs. Labow, Mr. Ferrante, Mr. Walsh, Mr. Roman
Absent: Mr. Mania, Mr. Nicastro and Mr. Perkins
Also Present: Sherry Maniscalco, CFO; Sean Canning, Business Administrator; Fred Semrau, Township Attorney; Lisa Lashway, Township Clerk; Mayor Greenbaum
President Roman: Okay, we are on to Approval of Previous Minutes but if I am correct, do we have enough
votes to approve these Minutes seeing as Mr. Walsh and myself were absent. Do we have to assume…do we
have to table that?
Mrs. Lashway: Fred, we have Approval of the Minutes and we only have four people and two can't vote. As
long as two vote in favor, it passes right?
Mr. Semrau: Yeah, we don't have sufficient…we are going to table it to the next meeting.
President Roman: So we will table it to the next meeting.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS
April 24, 2012 WS & PM (Mr. Walsh and Mr. Roman absent)
LETTERS FROM RESIDENTS/ORGANIZATIONS
- E-mail received April 26, 2012, from RVE Marketing regarding Legislative Update: April 2012. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 27, 2012, from NJPO Banquet Keynote Speaker Mayor Corey Booker. PDF Correspondence
ORDINANCES / RESOLUTIONS / CORRESPONDENCE FROM OTHER TOWNS
- Resolution received April 20, 2012, from the Township of Morris regarding a Resolution of the NJLM for Municipal Enlistment in the Military Initiative. PDF Correspondence
- Resolution received April 20, 2012, from the Township of Morris regarding a Resolution RE: Calling for the Restoration of Energy Taxes to Municipalities. PDF Correspondence
- Resolution received April 20, 2012, from the Township of Morris regarding a Resolution Urging the State Legislature to Approve A-2454 which Would Alter Eligibility Requirements for Unemployment Insurance for Seasonal Public Entity Workers. PDF Correspondence
- Resolution received April 20, 2012, from the Township of Morris regarding a Resolution of the Mayor and Township Committee of the Township of Morris Supporting Proposed Legislation to Require Fire Districts, School Districts, and County Governments to Pay Their Fair Share of Tax Appeal Refunds and Settlements (S-2904 and A-1503) PDF Correspondence
- Resolution received April 20, 2012, from the Township of Morris regarding a Resolution Opposing Assembly Bill No. 2168 and Senate Bill No. 1566, the New Jersey Residential Foreclosure Transformation Act. PDF Correspondence
- Resolution received April 20, 2012, from the Borough of Morris Plains regarding a Resolution of the New Jersey League of Municipalities Enlistment in the Military Initiative. PDF Correspondence. PDF Correspondence
- Pilot Resolution received April 25, 2012, from Comcast Re Pilot Fund. PDF Correspondence
- Resolution received April 25, 2012, from the Borough of Wharton regarding the New Jersey Public Water Supply Fluoridation Act. PDF Correspondence
- Resolution received April 27, 2012, from the Township of Long Hill regarding Flood Damage Reduction. PDF Correspondence
- Ordinance received April 27, 2012, from the Township of Byram regarding Land Use. PDF Correspondence
- Resolution received May 3, 2012, from the Morris County Planning Board regarding a Resolution that Supports A-2717, Which Would Extend the Time Period for Municipalities to Commit to Expend Affordable Housing Trust fund Monies. PDF Correspondence
LEAGUE OF MUNICIPALITIES
- E-mail received April 20, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding League Interlocal Advisory Service. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 20, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Pls Forward to your Vendors – Partnering for Economic Development. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 23, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Hiring our Heroes – Mega Job Fair. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 23, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding FINAL WEEK TO CLAIM YOUR CREDITS. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 23, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Sustainable Jersey: Announcement today of $200,000 for Municipal Sustainability Projects. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 24, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Public Access TV Stations Conference May 2-4, upcoming League Seminar, Administrator or manager Recruitment & Selection Advisory Services and Updated Info on Hiring our Heroes-Mega Job Offer. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 25, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Time is Running Out to Claim your CEU Credit from 96 th Annual NJLM Conference, Please send Your Shared Service Agreements and , Please Forward to your Vendors and Guidance on Qualified Purchasing. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 26, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Space is Limited – Register Now!!, Mini One Day Conference. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 26, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding NJLM & NY / NJ Baykeeper Invitation. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 26, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding House-Senate Conference Committee Looks to Find Common Ground on Federal Transportation Funding & Policy. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 27, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Economic Development May 3. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 30, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Support Our Vets – participate in this Year's Jean for Troops Day and Rutgers Program. PDF Correspondence
- Legislative Bulletin received April 30, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding the 2012-2013 Legislative Session. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received May 1, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding FROM TIME TO TIME – A Quarterly Report of Activities of the NJLM, Jan 2012 to March 2012. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received May 1, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Mayor's Newsline – May 2012. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received May 2, 2012, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Upcoming Sustainable Jersey Workshops & Webinars. PDF Correspondence
DEP / DOT / LOI / HIGHLANDS / EPA / DEPT. OF AGRICULTURE / ABC / BIDS
- Letter received April 25, 2012, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding Area of Concern: One 550-gallon #2 Heating Oil Underground Storage Tank System for BL 800, Lot 33 (156 Stephens State park Road). PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 26, 2012, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding History Fair. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 27, 2012, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding NJDEP Press Release – Water Use Advisory. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received May 1, 2012, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding NJDEP Press Release – Air Quality Awareness Week. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received May 1, 2012, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding NJDEP Press Release – Christie Administration Announces $16 Million in Clean Communities Grants for Municipalities and Counties. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received May 3, 2012, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding NJDEP / NJSOLM Brownfields and Baseball Event – Tuesday June 19 th . PDF Correspondence
MUA / MSA
- Minutes received April 27, 2012, from the Musconetcong Sewerage Authority regarding the March 22, 2012 meeting. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 17, 2012, from the County of Morris regarding MCPO Crime Victims Rights Week Recognition & Remembrance Ceremony. PDF Correspondence
- Minutes received April 23, 2012, from the Morris County Planning Board regarding the March 15 th meeting. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 25, 2012, from Morris County regarding Morris County Green Table Forum. PDF Correspondence.
- Notice of Final Determination received April 26, 2012, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Law and Public Safety, Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control regarding Division of Alcoholic Beverage v. Plaza 240 Associates LLC. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received April 30, 2012, from the Department of Community Affairs regarding NJRA Redevelopment Training Institute. PDF Correspondence
- Fax received May 1, 2012, from Comcast regarding May – June Channel Changes. PDF Correspondence
- E-mail received May 2, 2012, from New Jersey American Water regarding New Jersey American Water Granted New Rates. PDF Correspondence
President Roman: Okay, we are on to Correspondence. We have 43 pieces of correspondence. Does
anybody have any questions, comments? Seeing none, we are on to Ordinances for Public Hearing.
ORDINANCES FOR PUBLIC HEARING
President Roman: I open the hearing to the public on:
Ord.#15-2012 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive, County of Morris and State of New Jersey, to Accept a Deed of Dedication of a Right-of-Way from Ciel West Lake Properties, LLC, as Further Described Herein and Pursuant to the Terms and Conditions of this Ordinance.
President Roman: Mr. Ferrante.
Mr. Ferrante: I move for the adoption and final passage of Ord. #15-2012.
Mrs. Labow: Second.
President Roman: It's been moved and seconded. Anyone from the Council have any questions?
Anyone from the public? Okay, seeing none, Roll Call.
ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously
President Roman: Ord. #15-2012 is passed on second reading and I hereby direct the Clerk to forward
a copy of the same to the Mayor and publish the notice of adoption as required by law. I open the
hearing to the public on:
Ord.#16-2012 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive, County of Morris and State of New Jersey, to Accept a Deed of Easement for a Sight Triangle from Ciel West Lake Properties, LLC, as Further Described Herein and Pursuant to the Terms and Conditions of this Ordinance.
President Roman: Mr. Walsh.
Mr. Walsh: I move for the adoption and final passage of Ord. #16-2012.
Mrs. Labow: Second.
President Roman: It's been moved and seconded. Any Council discussion?
Mrs. Labow: I just have a question.
President Roman: Yes.
Mrs. Labow: I just wanted clarification. The triangle, the site triangle is for ease of traffic and that type
of thing, correct?
Mr. Semrau: It's an overall benefit to the Township. Yes.
Mrs. Labow: Yes, I think it's an excellent job on all of the backup information. Thank you.
Mrs. Lashway: You're welcome.
Mr. Semrau: We had some help from Lisa that's for sure. Thank you.
Mrs. Labow: And I liked how you used both sides of the paper. That's really good. It saves a lot of
paper. Thank you.
Mrs. Lashway: We got a new copier.
Mrs. Labow: Oh, cool.
President Roman: Does anyone from the public wish to be heard? Seeing none, Roll Call.
ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously
President Roman: Ord. #16-2012 is passed on second reading and I hereby direct the Clerk to forward
a copy of the same to the Mayor and publish the notice of adoption as required by law. Okay, we are on
to Consent Resolutions. Does anyone wish to remove one of the seven to Non Consent? Seeing none,
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 that 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.
- Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Requesting Approval from the Director of the Division of Local Government Services for Insertion of a Specific Item of Revenue into the 2012 Municipal Budget ($67,280 for the Baptist Church – Window Restoration Project). PDF Res
- Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Requesting Approval from the Director of the Division of Local Government Services for Insertion of a Specific Item of Revenue into the 2012 Municipal Budget ($466.55 donation – Foot Solutions). PDF Res
- Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Requesting Approval from the Director of the Division of Local Government Services for Insertion of a Specific Item of Revenue into the 2012 Municipal Budget ($4,000 Click It or Ticket Grant). PDF Res
- Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing Funds from the Township's Tree Fund for the Beautification of the Municipal Complex and Flanders Park. PDF Res
- Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Business Administrator to Execute a Grant Application for the 2012 Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Grant. PDF Res
- Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Awarding a Contract to Petersons Tree Service for Tree Removal, Tree Trimming and Stump Grinding Services. PDF Res
- Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Awarding a Contract to Bailey Restoration for the Baptist Church Phase I Exterior Restoration. PDF Res
Mrs. Labow: Thank you Mr. President. I'd like to move Consent Resolutions one through seven.
President Roman: Second?
Mr. Ferrante: Second.
President Roman: Okay, it's been moved and seconded. Anyone from the public wish to be heard? Seeing none, any Council Comments? Okay, Roll Call please.
ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously
President Roman: We are on to Motions. The only Motion is the Bill List. Mr. Ferrante.
- Bill List. PDF Bill List
Mr. Ferrante : I move the Bill List.
Mrs. Labow: Second.
President Roman: It's been moved and seconded. Does anyone from the public have any questions on the Bill List? Any Council questions? Seeing none, Roll Call.
ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously
President Roman: Okay, we are on to Administrative Reports. Anything, Mr. Mayor?
Mayor Greenbaum: Yup, I have four items this evening. The first, Mount Olive was recently notified that we were successful in being recommended for an award for a Community Development Block Grant for the amount of $57,500.00 for drainage issues, dry wells and berms in the Budd Lake section of town which is very good news for us. Congratulations to Tim Quinn, Kathy Murphy and Sean for doing the legwork and attending the Community Development Block Grant hearings in Morristown on Mount Olive's behalf. I'm also pleased to announce internet access and Optimum Wi-Fi zone has been installed in the Senior Center and was active as of 5 pm this date and again, thank you to Foot Solutions for sponsoring this for the year 2012 and to Lisa Pignataro for going out and getting that sponsor. Very good news for the seniors, through collaborative efforts that Sean and I were involved with we will be sharing Medicareship volunteers with Chesters, Washington Township through efforts of Norwescap. We are looking to set up a Medicare Counseling Center at the Senior Center. They would be available approximately four hours per week or through appointment and this is a no cost share and will provide better services to our seniors. Fourth and last, as you can all see the video equipment has arrived and kudos go Scott and to Lisa. Lisa is the individual who is behind the camera right there. Give a wave Lisa and the hope is that in the future that the video camera will actually be mounted in the back of the room during Council meetings and then taken off so as to protect the equipment and we will be streaming on our internet, the Council meetings, and I know there is some thought that Sean is looking into some kind of conversion program that we can also then put it out on the access channel. So we will be accomplishing a far greater reach in terms of our Council meetings than we had at any time in the past so we are moving in the right direction. It takes a little bit of time as you all know. Government wheels move slowly but we are moving in the right direction.
President Roman: Fred, just to touch on that, I was wondering if we could look into the possibility of being able since we are not going to be putting these meetings on the public access channel but on the internet, if there is going to be some means that we could be able to say, have advertisement on there for the benefit of the community? I don't know whether there's any restrictions on that.
Mr. Semrau: We can certainly look into that.
Mayor Greenbaum: Yes, and it is our thought process that we may be able to actually get this out on to the access channel as well as streaming on the internet.
President Roman: And it is understood that on the access channel we cannot be advertising on there.
Mayor Greenbaum: Except for DTA.
President Roman: Yeah, except for that. I read that in Page 87 of the…
Mayor Greenbaum: I have it framed in my office.
President Roman: On the senior access, the wireless access, I'm assuming there is no password or are the seniors aware of it? How does that go about?
Mr. Canning: They have the wireless router, I don't know if they have our wireless router there which would be general Wi-Fi which we really want to go to. Currently what is in place is the Optimum internet through their computer in the office and the Optimum Wi-Fi so that any of them that have Optimum at home, just like any other Optimum hotspot, they can sign right in. The next step is, we are going to donate a rather, I think Scott's on that this week or early next week, we'll have wireless router which will need no password and just be a public access point.
President Roman: Okay, and I'm assuming like anything, it will be protected so that there is no infiltration from anybody because the only thing that concerns me about, at least a public Wi-Fi, if somebody could be just standing by and be able to pull information that is coming off.
Mayor Greenbaum: We are going to have to look at that issue because we don't want to limit the ability of the seniors to get on and as you know it becomes more difficult to navigate the electronic advances that have occurred as you become my senior in age. It seems like the younger you are, the more savvy you are in terms of computer usage so we have to find the right balance between protecting information and being able to provide access to as many people as we can.
Mr. Canning: It is also a separate network from the Mount Olive government network. It's a separate entity in itself over there.
President Roman: I think also it might be beneficial is sometimes when you go into public, when you open up your Wi-Fi you can see a whole bunch of other wireless networks that you can log into. I think what might be beneficial at least having some kind of signage that allows the senior to know that that is the network that they should be going on so just in case there might be somebody sitting in the parking lot and decides to create their own little Wi-Fi hotspot and have the seniors accidentally log into that and let's say they are going on to their bank account, just to let the seniors know what our Wi-Fi name is and to only go on to that.
Mr. Canning: I think it would be a good opportunity for us to attend one of their meetings and an informational session as well.
President Roman: Anything else from the Administration? Mrs. Labow?
Mrs. Labow: How do they handle that at the Library?
Mr. Canning: I'm not sure. Scott, do you know?
Mrs. Labow: The points that Alex has brought up are probably over there to so maybe we'll ask. Don't you think Alex?
President Roman: It's always an issue nowadays where you go anywhere in public and if you go on to the wrong network, you are actually giving somebody all of your information.
Mayor Greenbaum: By the same token there are a lot of open public networks that people go into coffee shops and go into different public places and access the internet. You just have to be savvy in terms of what you do to protect….
President Roman: Exactly…and how seniors are more susceptible, at least they know what the senior Wi-Fi name is.
Mayor Greenbaum: We will look at the issue and we will address it.
President Roman: Anybody have Old Business?
President Roman: New Business?
President Roman: Legal Matters?
Mr. Semrau: The only thing that I would report is that we spent the day at the County Tax Board on behalf of the Township defending tax appeals that were filed. From our perspective the times have changed. We've gone through the reevaluation and the reassessment and we are much able to readily defend certain appeals now. So I think we tried about a total of 25 cases today and my feeling is the outcome of more than a majority of them will be favorable. Yes, there's cases that were settled because of some historical data and changes to record cards and things like that that are more customary but overall we are in a much better place now and the numbers become more defensible because of the investment you've made over the last few years to address this. That's my report.
President Roman: Fred, historically how has it gone for us in the tax appeals? Are we behind the curve? Are we anticipating having enough in reserve?
Mr. Semrau: Well, I don't know. I defer for the budgetary process about how we are doing there but in the past we had some significant appeals that, and developments and things of that nature, that resulted in I guess what you would call, I think we bonded for one of the settlements but I don't see any appeals out there now. Yes, there's a significant number of appeals but I don't think it is weighing us down like it did in the past because of the fact that you went through that reassessment process and the reevaluation. So I think you are much better off now going forward than you were a few years ago and I don't know how Sherry feels but…
Mrs. Maniscalco: I can talk to you a little bit more about that. We have about $100,000.00 left in reserve for tax appeals right now and I have gone over the list of pending tax appeals with Jack and come up with you know, a really rough guestimate for potential losses. There's just nothing, there's no big numbers there that we are seeing.
Mr. Semrau: Not like we have in the past.
Mrs. Maniscalco: Not like we have, you know, where we've had $1.5 million before and had to actually bond some of the tax appeals. We are just nowhere near that. We don't foresee that.
Mayor Greenbaum: So, the answer is through good fiscal management on my part….hahaha….we're in good shape.
President Roman: You know, you've got to be careful. You could throw a shoulder out like that.
Mr. Semrau: You know, it's always a little bit better to look at this now because the April 1 st date has passed so it's not as if there is going to be an influx of more appeals. We know now what is out there and we will start to inventory that.
President Roman: Now the mix, are they mostly residential, residential-commercial and is the mix historically the same?
Mr. Semrau: In my opinion, I think as Sherry meant, we don't have those significant commercial appeals. We have our sort of run of the mill repeat offenders.
President Roman: Repeat offenders.
Mr. Semrau: The residential, as far as where the rest of the County was, we really were pretty much on the better end of the spectrum for the residential appeals but the commercials at least not the significant appeals that are out there but you still have an expensive number but nothing out of the ordinary and nothing that would indicate to me so far that you're trying to adjust your assessments by way of appeal as opposed to a reevaluation. This is just more of the normal type of response that you would expect to receive. That's on my end.
Mrs. Maniscalco: Alex?
President Roman: Sherry, we'll let Rob go first.
Mayor Greenbaum: No, you first, please.
Mrs. Maniscalco: You want me first? The number that we had is actually very comparable to what we had last year which is a good thing. It didn't go up. I think that the plan will be what it typically is and Fred can confirm this in that you know, as we get closer to the end of the year and the State appeals are not resolved, you know, if in fact there has to be some sort of reduction, it will be taken off the books for 2013 so that there's hopefully no giveback, no money that we have to give back. That's typically what we strive to do.
Mayor Greenbaum: The bottom line, if I may, to be serious is that the Council's decision to do the reassessments on a multi-year period as the market was going down and in the long run has saved the Township significant dollars over a span of years so the Council should be congratulated in terms of the fiscal approach that was taken in coordination with the very conservative approach which is taken by the CFO every year and by Jack, the Tax Assessor. So, we made the right decisions a couple of years ago and it is benefitting us now. I hope that we are starting to see a turn in the market in terms of value or at least a stabilization in terms of home prices and commercial value. I do see the potential for significant commercial ratable growth in the next year to a year and a half on projects which I have either been alerted to or which I am currently working on and I think from that perspective the Township should be in very good shape moving forward in terms of our, the potential for tax appeals moving forward in how we have to deal with them. The bottom line is that we're in very good fiscal shape. We've been very conservative over the last 10 to 15 years thanks in part to Sherry and the entire Finance Department and we need to spend some money as you see on our infrastructure going forward and that's one of the things I'm going to be looking at next year and that is, how do we increase our infrastructure at the same time trying to reduce the tax burden on the residents. I'm hopeful if our commercial ratables come in as I hope they do, that we will actually be able to do both which would just be an amazing thing and really congratulations to this Council and past Councils and to past Administrations in terms of leaving the state of the economy of Mount Olive as to where we are today.
President Roman: Thank you very much. Alright, we are on to Council Reports.
Recreation Liaison Report
President Roman: For Recreation I'd just like to report that baseball is in full swing. Obviously with some of the recent rains games have been delayed but the fields are holding up remarkably well and the level of play especially amongst our travel teams is tremendous as always. Pretty soon within the next couple of weeks you are going to see some signs going up around the baseball fields just kind of to remind the parents that these are young children playing and not to cat call for the most part for lack of a better phrase. Board of Health, Mr…
Mayor Greenbaum: Can I add something in there Alex? I made an administrative decision last week or the week before in terms of the field closure policy in Mount Olive. I'd heard from a number of different residents and participants in the sports programs that our fields were being closed too early based upon weather conditions and we have now implemented a new procedure which gives the sports associations a greater role in terms of when fields will be closed. There will be situations based upon whether or where the fields will actually be closed without any input from the sports associations. There will be other times where the sports associations will be given, what I call, the right to play in the event that they so choose but at their own risk so that if they damage their fields, they will not get first preference in terms of fixing those fields and the third option, obviously is when it is sunny and bright and everyone is out playing. This is a task which Jim Lynch has managed over the last number of years that I've been involved in the Council and he has conservatively closed the fields to maintain the fields in as best a condition as could possibly be expected. So we've moved a little bit to soften our field closure program giving the sports authorities, the sports groups more authority in the decision but recognizing that when they make the decision to play, if they damage the fields, we're not going to be in immediately to fix those fields and so far Jim, I assume it's worked fairly well? I can tell you that in the discussion I had with soccer, they're not terribly thrilled about it and I told them that if they don't want that authority, they could give it back to you and that you could make the decision for soccer if they are not happy with the risk that they take by playing on fields when you would otherwise close them. So, they said they were going to work it out through June and see where they're at and reevaluate and they may come back to you and the same offer would go to the rest of the sporting organizations. It really was to benefit those organizations to allow them to play at their own risk.
President Roman: Yes, I mean, I've definitely noticed a difference because there's been a couple of games where I've attended where it's been, in past years it would have gotten closed and a baseball/softball field is not the same as a soccer field where it can take a lot more abuse. Soccer, I'm pretty sure, I can understand their reservations you know with not wanting to play but I applaud the Administration for moving that stance. Mr. Walsh.
Mr. Walsh: Yeah, on Rec, I just wanted to say on this topic, my wife and I moved here almost ten years ago now and we were so, we bought our house specifically because it was close to Turkey Brook and we were so surprised at how many people were concerned about Turkey Brook and you heard a lot of complaints about how much it was going to cost and all this stuff and now, we were talking the other night how we hear nothing but great things. Turkey Brook has just become such a jewel in this town and it is a wonderful park.
Mayor Greenbaum: Well, I'll take credit for that as well, hahaha…
Mr. Walsh: I give credit to past Councils, hahaha, it's just a great park.
President Roman: Mrs. Labow.
Mr. Walsh: As are many of the others.
Mrs. Labow: I just would like to add to what Pat had to say. I have a listing on 2 Carson which I just got a contract on today…
Mr. Walsh: Alright! Congratulations.
Mrs. Labow: Yay and the first thing that the agent said was the people were so incredibly thrilled that the offer was accepted because they want to be close to Turkey Brook Park. So, and I actually advertised the listing and really boasted about Mount Olive's premier recreational facility is how I kept labeling it so it was really nice. I thank Jim and the rest of our staff for a great job and it's a pleasure when people are so thrilled at the amenities that we have to offer here.
Mayor Greenbaum: Just remember that there are times when we hear criticisms in terms of whether there are too many weeds or the projects aren't being completed enough and as you all know, we have removed people under Jim's supervision over past years for budgetary reasons. He is doing more with less. The question was asked in terms of his budget, in terms of fixing the sidewalk. He is stretched to the max. He is doing the best he can with what he has and next year we need to reevaluate to make sure he's got the appropriate tools to keep and maintain the park and the buildings in appropriate condition.
Mrs. Labow: That's the one thing that I was really concerned about with the reduction in our budget is you end up with deferred maintenance costs and I think we are at that point right now where some of it is starting to catch up so we are going to…you know I trust, and our Administration. You are going to let us know what you need to be able to get everything running properly.
Mayor Greenbaum: Absolutely and as I said, if we can increase the ratable on the commercial side, we should be able to spend a little bit more to maintain our facilities and at the same time to hopefully reduce the tax burden on the residents.
President Roman: Thank you very much. There's no Board of Health Report.
Board of Health Report
President Roman: Legislative, Mr. Walsh.
Legislative Committee Report
Mr. Walsh: Yeah, as far legislative goes, just to kind of let everybody know, I'm always looking for input, I plan on drafting a very professional and well worded letter to our legislative representatives and to the Governor, Governor Christie. I really do feel it is high time for real property tax reform. I welcome any input from any Council members or anybody in the public about that letter. So I just wanted to give you a heads up and I look forward to any input you may have. We at the local level have worked very hard, as the Mayor has said, to keep our costs down and I think we've done an excellent job with less. That's all I have on legislative.
Planning Board Report
Mr. Walsh: Planning Board, nothing tonight.
Board of Education Liaison Report
Mr. Walsh: Board of Education, it does look like we are going to get the courtesy bussing through this year. I know we've talked about it before but I just wanted to bring it up again so that is very exciting. We will have courtesy bussing in place this year. Thank you.
President Roman: Just to touch up on the legislative, next Tuesday there is going to be a meet the republican candidates at the Public House in Chester for anybody that is at all interested in that and on the Board of Education Mr. Walsh, were you there at the meeting when they were discussing the Lacrosse Coach, Mr. Gallucci?
Mr. Walsh: Yes, yes.
President Roman: I got approached by several people in attendance at that meeting how they felt that they were mistreated by the Board members and wanted to find out how to address that situation so I don't know if they've reached out to you with their complaints and also as to your assessment of that meeting and whether the public was well received.
Mr. Walsh: Well, I'd look forward to hearing from anybody who had a problem. Apparently the lacrosse coach, somehow a rumor got started that he was going to be let go and a huge crowd came to his credit. I mean it sounds like he is a wonderful man. Students and parents showed up to support him and they didn't want him to be let go and it turns out he was never going to be let go at least that's what the School Board said in the meeting, that there was no plan to let him go. So, and I think everybody was very upset that that had happened. As far as their treatment, I would look forward to hearing from anybody. I have not heard from anybody but I would certainly welcome anybody who wants to approach me and talk to me about it.
President Roman: Mr. Mayor?
Mayor Greenbaum: Yes, just one other issue which touches on the School Board and the legislative aspects. On May 24 th the Middle School will be given an award for excellence, one of six schools throughout the country that has received this award. There are two ceremonies. One is during the day and one is at 7:00 at night. I would urge all Council members to attend. Congressman Lance is going to be there. He's indicated that he is going to present Tracy Severns with a flag that has flown over the Capital in recognition of the Middle School's excellence. It's rare that we get to attend something as prestigious in our own community as an award of this type.
Mr. Walsh: I'll be there.
President Roman: Thank you very much.
Mayor Greenbaum: Is that before or after you write your next letter? Just kidding.
President Roman: Mr. Ferrante.
Open Space Committee Report
Lake/Environment Issues Committee
Library Board Liaison
Mr. Ferrante: Just for the Library. I don't know if you guys are aware but the Mount Olive Township Library was awarded the Pyramid Award from the Public Relations Society of America for their programming series, their two week series on remembering the events of September 11 th so congratulations to Scott and his staff at the Library.
Mrs. Labow: That's excellent.
President Roman: Mr. Nicastro is not here.
Safety Committee Liaison – J. Nicastro
Economic Development Committee Report – J. Nicastro
President Roman: And neither is Mr. Mania.
Senior Citizen Liaison – J. Mania
President Roman: Mrs. Labow.
Pride Committee Report
Mrs. Labow: John, are you going to do Open Space?
Mr. Ferrante: I don't have anything.
Mrs. Labow: I have nothing for Pride or TNR. We are all set.
President Roman: Okay, we're on to the last Public Portion. Does anyone from the public wish to be heard? Seeing none. Any Council Comments, Mr. Ferrante?
Mr. Ferrante: None.
President Roman: Mr. Walsh?
Mr. Walsh: Yeah, I just want to make a quick note. Lisa Pignataro is doing a great job. I have to mention that there has been, there was even an email that went around about a month ago and I'll just say briefly, somebody complaining about the Mayor hiring her and that it was a waste of money. I mean, she just made more money, she'll make more money than we pay her easily every year and I just think she was a great hire and it's a testament to the Mayor that he can stand up to false criticisms and I just think she is doing a great job.
President Roman: I think he stands up great, the Mayor stands up wonderfully to false criticisms and those that are true.
Mr. Walsh: Not true.
President Roman: Mrs. Labow?
Mrs. Labow: I have nothing this evening.
President Roman: I don't want to give Mrs. Pignataro any kudos just yet until I see the footage you know because I advised her to only shoot me from the good side.
Mrs. Labow: Which side is that?
President Roman: It's the one right back here. Alright, can I get a motion to adjourn?
ADJOURNMENT - Motion made and seconded. All in favor, none opposed, the meeting was adjourned at 7:42 pm.
Alex Roman, Council President
I, Lisa Lashway, Township Clerk of the Township of Mount Olive do hereby certify that the foregoing Minutes are a true and correct copy of the Minutes approved at a legally convened meeting of the Mount Olive Township Council duly held on May 22, 2012.
Lisa Lashway, Township Clerk