Township Council Minutes
December 3, 2002
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
MOMENT OF REFLECTION in recognition of the men and women
fighting terrorism and defending the freedom we all enjoy
OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT ANNOUNCEMENT
According to the Open Public Meetings Act, adequate Notice
of this Meeting has been given to the Mt. Olive Chronicle
and the Morristown Daily Record. Notice has been posted
at the Municipal Building, 204 Flanders-Drakestown Road,
Mt. Olive, New Jersey, and notices were sent to those requesting
ROLL CALL: Present: Mr. Guenther (7:35), Mr. Greenbaum,
Mr. Perkins, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Scapicchio, Mrs. Miller, Mr.
Also in attendance: Mayor Licitra, Sherry Jenkins, CFO/Act.
Business Administrator, John Dorsey, Township Attorney,
Lisa Lashway, Township Clerk
PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD
Pete Goodwin, Drakestown Road: The number which is not
exactly clear at the moment; I received today a notice of
change of address effective January 1, 2003. I am not at
all adverse to fixing the mess on Drakestown Road which
has been a nightmare for years. I understand the need for
this. I have absolutely no argument with the fact that we
are changing numbers even though it costs me a lot as far
as aggravation is concerned. What I do have a problem with
is the fact that effective January 1, 2003 my number must
be changed according to this, all the post offices are going
to work well with us. This is one of the busiest times of
the year and anybody knows that it takes anywhere from four
to eight weeks to get addresses changed and to get stuff
mailed to you properly. Come January 1, I have all kinds
of important papers coming to my house. Couldn't we have
thought of this and maybe not have done it for January 1,
2003? Or have given the property owners some notification
in advance with this? All of the sudden we have a change
here and we have to deal with it, and we are going to come
up on the short end of the stick. Where is the thinking?
President Scapicchio: Pete I have to tell you, this is
the first time I have seen this. As one who is familiar
with that neighborhood, I think this is a long time coming
and I think that this is
Mr. Goodwin: No argument. I have no problem with this change.
I have a problem with the execution of the change. The timing
of it, the lack of notice to the people involved. Although
we are a minority in this Town and we keep getting forgotten
whenever messages come out to the Town as a whole. I have
an address that does not get them.
President Scapicchio: Mayor, who is our 911 coordinator?
There's not a name attached to this. Who is that?
Mrs. Spencer: Actually the Chief of Police is responsible
for the 911 call and it is because of the number of responses
that have been made on this road for emergency assistance.
Mr. Goodwin: I have lived there for 22 years. I understand
President Scapicchio: Sir, please let her finish and you
will have as much time as you'll need to voice your concerns.
Mrs. Spencer: Because of recent issues; our police officers
have been dispatched for emergency purposes and have gone
to the wrong houses repeatedly, it was felt that this was
an issue that needed to be addressed sooner rather than
later. We worked with the Chief of Police and the Tax Assessor.
It is critical to the Tax Assessor to have the addresses
changed on a Calendar Year basis for continuity of tax records,
revenues, tax collections. The decision was collectively
made that it would be effective January 1, and that was
done only after meeting with all three affected post offices
who really felt that a January change was the best for all
President Scapicchio: Council, any questions or comments?
Mrs. Miller: I would think that those post offices who get
the old number after January are going to automatically
know that it's yours I would think because they have been
delivering it that way for years. So they will know that
it goes to the new number.
Mr. Goodwin: Long Valley can't get our mail straight now,
they send it to Drakestown Rd. Laketown Road and every other
Town road in Long Valley. I have a Long Valley mailing address.
I have had fun for twenty two years up here with post office
so please don't insult my intelligence by telling me the
post office is going to do a good job. I am sorry; I can't
abide, it is just not going to float.
President Scapicchio: I think the post office has a different
responsibility than we do and I think our responsibility
as a Governing Body is to insure the safety of all residents
is provided. I could tell you I have been a resident of
Mt. Olive Twp. for 26 years now. I know this neighborhood
well. I get confused every single time I go there and I
think that this proposal was a responsible one and I for
one would have liked to have seen this sooner and I am glad
that it is on the agenda now and I am in favor of moving
forward with the proposal as it is presented to us. I am
not quite sure, Cindy do we need to take any kind of action
or is this advisory for us?
Mrs. Spencer: It is just advisory for you. It is within
the realm of responsibility for the Tax Assessor who actually
issued the letters.
President Scapicchio: I would think that we all would realize
that this was a good thing that was happening. I don't think
we have much choice is what I am trying to say.
Mr. Goodwin: I am thinking the execution of it stinks.
My issue is with execution not the basic concept.
Mr. Spino: I am not arguing, I think the timing is terrible,
but what we are hearing is that the timing has to be that
Mr. Goodwin: Someone could have thought about this six
months ago. This has been here since 1989, this is 13 years
ago, c'mon and we are going to jam it in a month. I have
been up here with members of this Council; I have said this
very thing. For all these years I said this stinks.
Mr. Spino: I don't know what other solution we could have.
Mr. Goodwin: It just rankles me that we are paying the
price again because I live on Drakestown Road for people
not thinking and not anticipating, not going ahead. This
Town is just incredible.
President Scapicchio: Pete, lets just hope that everybody
has put the best effort forward and that the post office
won't miss a beat, you'll get your mail and the safety of
the residents of that street will be provided for.
Mr. Rattner: One thing, I would just like to ask the post
office how they would do it if you had a person that was
the old 136 and there was a new 136, how would the post
office know which house to give it to? How do they know
whether you have changed your address?
Mrs. Spencer: Each of the post offices have, as I said,
the Tax Assessor met with representatives from each post
office and they went through the maps and they have been
given a one on one transfer document so that each resident
does not need to fill out a have moved kind of change of
address, and that was what they required and all of the
paperwork has been done.
Mr. Rattner: What I am saying is; they are renumbering.
I know if you have two lots, I get stuff even from the County
and from the Town from past times. My number is 33, I have
gotten 35 because on a tax map it shows that there is an
additional lot. What I am saying is that it looks like that
there may be some numbers that's on the old current address
and on the new address. Something comes in on January 14th
that was somebody's old address and there is also a number
given out for somebody's new address. How does the post
office with that lead time know who's house it goes too?
President Scapicchio: Steve I don't think the Administration
could answer a question like that.
Mr. Rattner: But they had said that they talked it over
and they worked it out with the post office.
President Scapicchio: They said that the post office said
that they can handle this and that it is not a problem.
Mr. Rattner: I am just asking how that would happen. If
he has a problem, there's a situation based on these numbers
that looks like it could happen that if you had somebody
who was 177 and you have another person a mile down the
road who is now 177 and a letter comes for 177 who's house
does it go to?
Mr. Spino: It comes down to that guy throwing the mail
looks at the name. When you get down to a local level, it
is not done by a machine.
Mr. Guenther: I do a lot of mailings and my experience
is that if you are off one digit, they return it to you.
President Scapicchio: But what is our responsibility here?
Our responsibility is to provide for the safety. Bernie,
you know just as well as I do that road is terrible. We
don't even know which doors to knock on when we campaign.
Mr. Rattner: I think job 29 days notice when you don't
know it is coming is unreasonable.
Mr. Spino: I didn't want to say that when Mr. Goodwin was
here but I think that would have been, I think the better
thing to do having hindsight now and we just found out this;
we didn't know it was happening, was to do it in June or
to put it off until next June.
President Scapicchio: I think the safety is more important.
Mr. Spino: Having said that I don't think that could be
done now at this point.
President Scapicchio: We have the Chief of Police in the
audience Ed, just for the record, can you just tell us real
briefly some of the hardships that the department has with
regard to the confusion with street addresses?
Chief Katona: If you look on the list you will see that
we identified 17 double or triple addresses. The complaints
that we have received most recently were that constantly,
or two or three times a year this one woman gets a knock
at the door at 2:00 in the morning from the Police Department
or the Ambulance looking for a particular address. Her fear
is that when she needs to call and she is getting up in
age, her and her husband, when she needs to call, that the
ambulance will stop at one of the other two addresses and
not get to her. How many times a year does this happen?
We haven't been able to conduct the survey and I really
don't think that it is important to get the empirical data
that says this happens 22% of the time or 1% of the time
but I think that in that time it happens once, and you need
that two or three minute response that we don't have it,
that we need to take the steps to get it done. My recommendation
is that we do it as soon as possible. I would like to have
had and we have discussed with the Tax Assessor who's responsibility
this is and I don't envy his position certainly but it is
his responsibility to set the addresses. The only times
he could set the addresses as I understand it and I may
be speaking beyond my experience is at the beginning of
the calendar year. We couldn't do this as we proposed or
the Administration thought originally we can do this in
March, which would be a sufficient time period. We can't
get that done. It is either this January or next January.
If it is next January it is my recommendation not to wait.
We know that it is an issue. It is has been brought to our
attention. I think it is irresponsible if we do not act
on it. I feel for these people, I have heard the complaint
today. I will have a conversation with the Assessor and
the post master to see if there is something we can do to
lengthen that period out and answer the questions, what
is it exactly that they are going to do to ensure a smooth
transition. In my experience, I had been a mailman. I do
know that when you sort the mail it is all a line and it
is in the line according to the way the mailman travels.
So he has to physically take that and 112 may not be next
to 113 in his route. So takes it and looks at first the
number, second the name. It's his case, it is his route,
he knows where these people are. Simply because we change
the designation from 115 to 12 it is still this particular
box in his route and I think that the transition will be
Mrs. Spencer: I just want to add that one of the things
that we took into consideration is we have now made the
numbering on our side of the street to be all even. Washington
Township is all odd. We have made it sequential so that
it all matches up any driver is going to realize that you
are going to get to the next number which was not true before.
We have even taken the step at the far end of the road
Mrs. Spencer (cont'd): where Mt. Olive is on both sides
of the road to change those numbers so that they also sequentially
follow on the Washington Township numbering system so that
it is clear all the way through that road.
President Scapicchio: I think you are doing a good job
with this, I wish it was done sooner.
Mr. Guenther: Just a general question. How come it was
reversed? The order of the number was reversed. In other
words, what are the lower numbers now on Drakestown will
be the high numbers and vice versa?
Chief Katona: The recommendation nation wide, if you have
driven on any of the interstates you
Have seen that the exit numbers have changed. They go from
west to east. West being highest to east being zero and
North to South. So that is the same scheme that is being
President Scapicchio: Ed, thank you.
Chief Katona: You are welcome.
President Scapicchio: Anyone else from the Public on anything?
ORDINANCES FOR FIRST READING - (Public Hearing December
Ord. #53-2002 Refunding Bond Ordinance of the Township
of Mount Olive, In the County of Morris, New Jersey Providing
for the Refunding of Certain Unfunded Pension Liabilities
of the Township Appropriating $650,000 Therefore and Authorizing
the Issuance of $650,000 Refunding Bonds of the Township
for Financing the Cost Thereof.
Mr. Rattner moved that Ord. #53-2002 introduced by title
and passed on first reading, that a meeting be held on December
17, 2002, at 7:30 pm in the Municipal Building, 204 Flanders-Drakestown
Road, Mount Olive, NJ, for a public hearing, consideration
of second reading and passage of said ordinance and Mrs.
Miller seconded the motion.
President Scapicchio: Council Discussion?
Mr. Rattner: I think that it looks like that we lucked
out on this one because the interest rates have been rising
gradually. I know because the Musconetcong Sewage Authority
is looking at going out and we are getting our quotes tomorrow
when we go to market and it is up basic points just in the
last couple weeks. It looks like we got very very close
to the historical row of interest rates.
President Scapicchio: Anyone else Council? Seeing none.
ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously.
Motion made for adjournment. All in Favor, none opposed.
The Meeting was Adjourned at 7:48 pm. The regularly scheduled
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 December 10, 2002.
LISA M. LASHWAY
Mount Olive Township Clerk