Township Council Minutes
December 23, 2003
The Regular Meeting of the Mount Olive Township Council was called to order at 7:36 pm by Council Vice President Perkins
MOMENT OF REFLECTION in recognition of the men and women fighting terrorism and those who have lost their lives 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 Morristown Daily Record. Notice has been posted at in the Municipal Building, 204 Flanders-Drakestown Road, Mt. Olive, New Jersey, and notices were sent to those requesting the same.
ROLL CALL: Present: Mr. Scapicchio, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Greenbaum, Mr. Perkins,
Absent: President Guenther Mr. Spino, Mrs. Miller
ALSO PRESENT: Lisa Lashway, Township Clerk; John Dorsey & Peter King, Township Attorneys, Sherry Jenkins, Chief Financial Officer.
Questions on Bill List?
Mr. Rattner: I have provided my question to the CFO earlier in the day, so she’ll be here to discuss it when we go over the Bill List. Any other questions?
APPROVAL OF MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS
December 9, 2003 CS Present: President Guenther, Mr. Scapicchio, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Greenbaum, Mr. Perkins, Mr. Spino, Mrs. Miller
December 16, 2003 CS Present: President Guenther, Mr. Scapicchio, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Perkins
Absent: Mrs. Miller, Mr. Spino, Mr. Greenbaum
Mr. Scapicchio made a motion to approve the Minutes as listed above, Mr. Rattner seconded motion.
ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously with the exception of Mr. Greenbaum, abstained on December 16, 2003.
Resolutions, Ordinances, Correspondence from other Municipalities
1. Resolution received December 8, 2003 from Allamuchy Township Regarding a Proposed Amendment to the Land Development Ordinance.
2. Resolution received December 11, 2003 from the Township of Byram regarding a Proposed Amendment to the Land Development Ordinance.
3. Resolution received from Rockaway Township supporting the Property Tax Reimbursement Program (R03-216).
4. Resolution received December 12, 2003 from the Borough of Netcong regarding the 2004 Reorganization Meeting.
5. Resolution received December 17, 2003 from the Township of Boonton Opposing Assembly Bill A-3778.
ABC/Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control
6. Order received December 9, 2003 from the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control Vacating Indefinite Suspension for Burger-N-Brew Inc.
7. Order received December 9, 2003 from the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control Vacating Indefinite Suspension for Alidan Inc.
New Jersey State League of Municipalities
8. E-mail received December 8, 2003 from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities Regarding Proposed Ban on Dual Public Service.
9. E-mail received December 13, 2003 from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities Regarding S-2832/A-3936, Transfer of Development Rights (TDR).
10. E-mail received December 13, 2003 from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities Regarding A-3945, Dual Office Holding.
11. Letter received December 15, 2003 from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities Regarding Legislation Round-up on Multiple Issues in 2003.
12. E-mail received December 17, 2003 from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities Regarding Abandoned Properties and Flag Display.
13. E-mail received December 18, 2003 from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities Regarding Proposed Stormwater Regulations
14. E-letter received December 18, 2003 from Congressman Frelinghuysen.
15. Letter received December 10, 2003 regarding Notice of Claim on Behalf of the Estate of Adelina E. Troya.
16. Letter received December 15, 2003 regarding Tort Claims Notice on behalf of Elizabeth Huxtable.
County of Morris
17. Morris County Planning Board Minutes received December 11, 2003 regarding their meeting on October 8, 2003.
18. Letter received December 12, 2003 from the Morris County Board of Chosen Freeholders regarding all Morris County Municipal Reorganization Meetings.
19. Letter received December 12, 2003 from the Department of Transportation regarding Local Aid and Economic Development Federal Aid Transportation Enhancements.
JIF/Joint Insurance Fund
20. Letter received December 17, 2003 from the Morris County Municipal Joint Insurance Fund regarding the annual Reorganization meeting to be held Wednesday, January 14, 2004 in the Hanover Township Municipal Building.
21. Authority Budget from the Musconetcong Sewerage Authority received December 8, 2003.
22. Letter received December 9, 2003 from the State of New Jersey Board of Public Utlilities in the matter of the Application of Mount Olive Villages Water Company, Inc. for the Approval of an Amendment of Municipal Consent Franchise on an Emergent Basis.
23. Letter received December 15, 2003 from Elizabethtown Gas regarding Notification to Municipalities of Involuntary Termination of Residential Gas Service.
24. Letter received December 15, 2003 from Comcast regarding the Service Changes in effective in 2004.
25. Letter received December 15, 2003 from JCP&L Regarding Annual Proposal for Basic Generation Service.
26. Letter received December 9, 2003 from the State of New Jersey Board of Public Utlilities Regarding New Jersey American Water Increase in Rates.
Vice President Perkins: Any Council comments or questions concerning the 26 items of correspondence? Seeing none. I would like to thank our attorney’s office for drafting the resolution, kind of regarding the rate increase of the water utility, New Jersey American, I think it is a tad upsurd. I want to thank you John for getting that out in a timely fashion
Mr. Dorsey: Thank you. Mr. President, as you know Ordinance 49-2003 is a Bond Ordinance. We do not have five Council people here, perhaps you want to hold that and see if the fifth shows up. If the fifth does not show up, I am afraid that this ordinance will simply die and we’ll have to begin the process again next year. So lets see if the fifth Council person comes.
Vice President Perkins: Thank you Mr. Dorsey. I have been informed that Councilman Spino may show up this evening, he does have other engagements so if he shows up a little bit later we will bring this item back up and go for acting on that as it sits. There were no ordinances for first reading.
ORDINANCES FOR PUBLIC HEARING
Ord. #49-2003 Bond Ordinance Providing for Improvements to the Water Utility in and by the Township of Mount Olive, in the County of Morris, New Jersey, Appropriating $151,000 Therefore and Authorizing the Issuance of $151,000 Bonds or Notes of the Township for Financing the Cost Thereof. (installation of meter pits). [see page 15 for vote].
ORDINANCES FOR FIRST READING - 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.
1. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Release of Performance Bonds RE: Woodfield at Mount Olive Section IIC (Brock Lane)
2. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Release of Performance Bonds RE: Woodfield at Mount Olive – Apartments – Portion of Section IIA and IIIA (Brock Lane)
3. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Release of Performance Bonds RE: Woodfield at Mount Olive - Section IIA – Singles (amended)
4. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Awarding a Contract to Princeton Nassau Conover for a First Responder Vehicle for the Budd Lake First Aid & Rescue Squad.
5. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing Change Order #5 RE: the Mount Olive Public Library.
6. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing a Renewal of the Prescription Plan for the Township of Mount Olive by Way of Bollinger Rx.
7. Resolution to Amend the Capital Budget – Meter Pits (Ord. #49-2003).
8. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Mayor to Execute a Farmland Assessment Application for the Year 2004 for Charters Farm.
9. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Cancellation of Taxes on Block 900 and Lot 1, Q Farm – 40 Stephens Park Road. (map attached)
10. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Cancellation of Taxes on Block 7701 Lot 2, 363 Route 46. (map attached)
11. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing Change Order #5 RE: Mount Olive Township Library.
12. Resolution of the Township of Mount Olive Providing for the Transfer of 2003 Budget Appropriations for the Current Fund Budget.
13. Resolution of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Cancellation of 2003 Appropriations in the Current Fund.
14. Resolution of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Cancellation of 2003 Appropriations in the Sewer Utility Fund.
15. Resolution of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Cancellation of 2003 Appropriations in the Water Utility Fund.
16. Resolution of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Cancellation of 2003 Appropriations in the Sanitation Fund.
17. Resolution of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Use of Various Purchasing Contract.
18. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Township Attorney to Proceed with In Rem Tax Foreclosures Pursuant to the In Rem Tax Foreclosure List Prepared by Sherry M. Jenkins, CMFO/CTC.
19. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Refund of $434.00 to the Association for People with Developmental Disabilities, Morris County Chapter, New Jersey.
20. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Payment of $2,142.52 for Uniforms Purchased Not in Accordance with the New Jersey Public Contracts Law.
21. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing a Settlement with Kaplan Companies.
22. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive RE: Morris Chase Preliminary Subdivision Developer’s Agreement.
23. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing a Settlement Regarding AIG Baker Litigation.
Mr. Greenbaum moved for approval of consent resolutions 1through 23 on the revised agenda which was on the dais, is that correct John?
Mr. Dorsey: Excluding 22.
Mrs. Lashway: Number 11 is a duplicate of number five.
Mr. Greenbaum: So then my motion is for approval of resolution 1 through 10, 12 through 21 and number 23. Mr. Perkins seconded the motion.
Vice President Perkins: Comments from the Public?
Mr. Elms: Wasn’t consent Resolution number five questioned before.
Mr. Dorsey: The question that was raised by Mr. Scapicchio whether number five dealt with the removal of rock at the library. It does not, it deals with an extra for the water main.
Mr. Elms: So it is different than the one that was before.
Mr. Dorsey: It’s different than the one’s that dealt with rock. Those are the ones you are referring to.
Mr. Rattner: I think what it was is two weeks ago, we actually approved two or three change orders. I think the other one had to do with the tapping in of the water so they could have water for the site. What this one is and it is different because I did check into it is the replacement, I think it was originally one type of material, maybe pvc or something like that and it was upgraded based on the recommendation of our building department who inspected it and requested duck tile pipe. So what this change order is the difference in cost and labor to put duct tile pipe main in rather than material that was originally spec’d out. I believe that was in the original documentation that you may have copied, so it is different from what we approved two weeks ago.
Mr. Elms: Consent resolution number 18. Is that something that is going to be carried over into the coming year?
Mr. Dorsey: The In Rem foreclosures will proceed. This is a standard list prepared by the tax collector based upon outstanding tax liens to proceed with their foreclosure. Pretty standard resolutions.
Mr. Elms: So it’s the authorization for the Township attorney whoever that may be? Also, consent resolution 23.
Mr. Dorsey: This is a resolution of the outstanding litigation with AIG/Baker which you have heard discussed I think on a number of occasions, this has been going on for the last 11 months. It authorizes a resolution to that settlement without any payment the Township, it dismisses their claim for $75,000 in maintenance costs, requires them to immediately repair storm water damage and requires them to put up a maintenance bond for a period of time.
Mr. Elms: Does that mean we have taken over ITC South road.
Mr. Dorsey: The road was determined by the township engineer to be substantially complete as early as January of 2002. With the adoption of the resolution we will now take over the maintenance of that road. The significant problem that occurred during 2003 were those walls that had to be reinforced. Those walls are property owned by AIG/Baker. They are not in the Towns right of way and the obligation to maintain those will continue with the owner of the mall.
Mr. Elms: Well I understood that that there were supposed to fix the water running down on to the road by Loews.
Mr. Dorsey: I think that’s right. The other thing I did mention is we get a check for $75,000 to take care of a relatively minor punchlist that Gene Buczynski has.
Mr. Elms: Because if you go up there today, it looks like a river running down.
Mr. Dorsey: We got $75,000.00 to deal with that issue, those are one of the small ones that can be dealt with.
Mr. Elms: Thank you.
Ned McDonald, Budd Lake: This is in regard to resolution number 20. Can you explain to me how you could approve something that was essentially an illegal act.
Mr. Dorsey: The background of this apparently, and I think the administration issued a blank purchase order for uniform. The Township is required to purchase uniforms under it’s collective bargaining agreement. Somehow, one department ordered a number of uniforms, roughly $2,150.00 which exceeded the bid limit. When that bill was received by the CFO, the CFO refused to pay it. That is the bill that is being specifically dealt with here. The Township is in the position that has received those uniforms and those uniforms have been dispersed to it’s Mr. Dorsey (cont’d): workers and therefore as a practical matter the Township has gotten and the workers have got the benefit of those uniforms. Not to pay this bill at this point in time, not that I think that anyone on the Council wants to pay it, would only mean that the Township would be sued and the obvious basis for the suit is hey, the uniforms were delivered. There was never anything found to be imperfect in the uniforms and therefore we want what is called a law of quantum merit. Fair value for those uniforms. So, the answer is it is being paid to avoid litigation and in the end it is my opinion the litigation would result in the Township having to pay for uniforms that it took. That’s the answer.
Mr. McDonald: It just seems to me that when somebody does something like this in the Township, there should be some penalties for the people that are involved with this type of thing. Also, doesn’t this open you up to a tax payer’s lawsuit for doing something like this. Really, it is against the law, and it was accomplished and somebody is getting away with it.
Mr. Dorsey: I have to acknowledge all of the bad things that you say. On the other hand, it is probably the most reasonable thing to simply dispose of this particularly since the Township received the uniforms and the administration has advised the Council that the department head or supervisor involved has received a letter of reprimand and some counseling on how these things will be done.
Mr. McDonald: I understand you are caught between a rock and a hard place, but in a case like this it just sort of sets a precedent that people could get away with it again and essentially walk away from it scott free.
Vice President Perkins: Ned, one thing that you have to look for in a resolution is that the Business Administrator ultimately has a responsibility for the centralized purchasing as well as inventory control. That is where that falls. In the resolution the Township Council has looked and basically chastising which is the best we can do right now. These uniforms were ordered, some of them were back ordered, so of course they didn’t arrive. Someone did not keep track of the blanket purchase order. Kind of like you and I and the rest of the Council all on the same purchase order and know body meets every month to say here is something I have encumbered. So whatever wasn’t followed was brought to our attention through the CFO, it’s been addressed, everybody that has been involved and now “supposedly” there are checks and balances that have been put in to place. What they are I would have to leave that up to the new administration that is coming up, or to take a look and make sure that those are adequate to prevent them from happening again.
Mr. McDonald: I understand that. As a taxpayer it leaves a bad taste in my mouth when I see things like this occur and I hope that it is really very strongly advised that the various departments don’t do this in the future.
Mr. Greenbaum: I agree with you 100%, Ned. Bad taste in my mouth. There were emails that went back and forth when this was uncovered. Apparently there was a letter or an email from the CFO to the administration indicating that this was a matter which had to be bid out, apparently, and this is back in May, that this email went out. I am extremely troubled by the fact that this recommendation from the CFO was not followed. I happened to be given an explanation as to what happened ultimately and why that explanation was not followed. The CFO caught the problem I believe before it actually occurred, but it was for some reason not followed by the Administration. I agree with everything that Mr. Dorsey says in terms of why we are paying this, so yes we are caught between a rock and a hard place here. I believe that the administration let us down. I believe that the CFO did her job in terms of notifying the administration that this was potentially going to be a problem. I wish there was a better way to get around this issue and I agree with you that somebody should have been reprimanded especially in light of the fact that in my opinion this was something that was caught which was to be addressed and wasn’t addressed. But in light of the way I see things happening within the Township within the next year, I think it is probably a distinction without any real substance. Doing something at this point in terms of our unhappiness with the people who ultimately made the mistake is an irrelevancy at this point.
Mr. McDonald: Okay, I understand.
Mr. Greenbaum: I agree with you 100 %, this is wrong, it was identified and it should have never gotten to this point. Because of where we are and the amount that is involved of my feeling and I think if probably everyone that has looked at this matter, there was not ulterior motive behind the bidding law issue, it is just something that slipped through the cracks so to speak improperly that it is best just to say it as Mr. Dorsey said we would ultimately have to pay it anyway in this instance.
Mr. Rattner: I agree with Ned. I looked into it, and I take a slightly different tact. Everybody is imperfect. Every system is imperfect. Yes, it is true, a couple things happened. Once the CFO has a system that I guess you get $10,000.00 worth of uniforms, and you notify the Administration that you know the bid limit is $17,000 or $18,000, you should start looking at it, it was at that point. At that point, also what happened, we just signed a new labor contract which increased the number of uniforms we had to buy. The system didn’t work. There Mr. Rattner (cont’d): was a problem, our internal system would not pay the bill. That is what came up, so it was identified. We were then at that point given an explanation, how it happened that they plugged the whole, they realized what the problem was in the system, they had to retrain or emphasize to some different people exactly what has to happen. It basically happened that there was something that was back ordered, the purchase order didn’t get in the system. The system didn’t catch it at that point. There was something that we had to get, we were told about it, we had to look it, we know we got the uniforms, we practically committed to buying the uniforms. The issue was that we went over the bid limits by $2,000. In the whole scheme of things, things are going to happen. I was very happy that when we were given the notification it happened, this is what happened, this is the action that we are taking and we are coming to the Council because we want you to approve it. The honest truth is, if it was just put on the bill list, no matter how much I check the bill list I wouldn’t have caught it because I don’t keep running totals of every account. If I saw a $2,000.00 bill for the uniforms and I check the bill lists every two weeks, I wouldn’t have caught it. So yes, there was a hole in the system. It was identified, there said there was some different training, I am not sure exactly if there was disciplinary action, but whatever appropriate actions had to be done. In the whole scheme of things, there are going to be little things that are going to come up. This is not one that troubles me as much as a lot of other things that have happened. I saw what happened. It was something that we really needed, it wasn’t something that was done without our knowledge. It wasn’t something that was bought that we didn’t know, like things I have brought up lately. We found a hole in the system, and hopefully now it has been plugged. Hopefully that won’t happen again. The system did catch it before it couldn’t be paid. So at least that part worked. It was after the fact, but it was identified and the CFO refused to authorize it because it was allowed.
Vice President Perkins: Thank you Mr. Rattner:
Mr. Rattner: Okay. We didn’t have Council comments. I just wanted to say that there are couple things on the list. One of them, there is a number of resolutions that are canceling 2003 appropriations. That is something that was started by the CFO a couple of years ago. Usually we waited until after the year’s end. All the bills came in, we would cancel the appropriations but then we would have to wait for the following year to use that in the following year’s surplus, which means we had to raise taxes on money that maybe we did have in the bank some place. What the CFO had done, said that doesn’t make a lot of sense, if I can estimate how much money we’ll need, based on the open purchase orders, let’s cancel them in the current year, then it gets rolled over and then the next year we can put it in the Budget. I think with the new Administration coming in. It is over $600,000 that had been canceled by doing it at, this time of the year, it does give that money available to use as basically a revenue type number in the next year’s budget. So this year, in total it is about $600,000.
Vice President Perkins: Any other Council comments?
ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously.
New Library Construction Report
Jerry Sheard, President of the Mount Olive Library Board of Trustees: As you can see, tonight we are having the light and telephone poles put in by JCP&L, which we have been looking for, for quite a while. A portion of the plywood roofing is on, so they could start working inside. We will be covering the center portion with canvas because of the type of wood truss that has got to go on, so you’ll see blue canvas, or some color canvas over the center portion for a while, while they are working inside. Other than that, things are progressing pretty good. You do have, as Steve mentioned, that thing for the water, it was at the request of the Township, our architect and everything said and we met the code, but the town decided they wanted a different type of pipe, that’s what that cost was for the upgrading of the pipe that we put in not the work, because regardless of what kind of pipe, the pipe still had to get put in. So it was the upgrading of the type of pipe that the Town requested. The original did meet the Boca Code. Do you have any questions?
Mr. Rattner: It was one of the questions I had on the bill list, the only reason why I brought it up, I saw the back up on the percentage completion because we have a large bill to pay for Blackstone for their progress payments. The business administrator gave me a memo saying that it’s in the package but she had problems with it. My questions naturally, like the last time, well, why did you approve it if you had a problem with it before we got to it. I believe the CFO was doing some research into it to at least fully explain, whether the amount is actually appropriate for the progress that is estimated to be done.
Mr. Sheard: Well since the CFO or you has not contacted me, I cannot tell you anything about it because I never knew anything about it which is not the way it should be, we should be the first one to be contacted if there is a problem.
Mr. Rattner: I think the CFO contacted and probably has the answer.
Mrs. Jenkins: I spoke to Rita this morning regarding the payment process. Rita, do you want to speak about some of the things that we talked about this morning.
Mr. Rattner: If you think it is the appropriate amount and it is appropriate because you talked to the people in town who may have had a problem, did we get a resolution, is that Bill appropriate?
Mrs. Jenkins: Yes. We did get a resolution. I spoke to Rita and she explained the payment process to me and I do feel comfortable that we can pay it at this point.
Mr. Rattner: Was the issue again the fact that the business administrator has a problem with the contract provision that provides that payment when materials are delivered to the site and so there was a decrepancy between what she said was the percentage of completion and total amount delivered. Is that the whole issue? So you are happy with the amounts then?
Mr. Sheard: If I may, two months ago, I sat here and read that section of the contract and I believe the administrator was here and most of the council people which gives us the authority to do that.
Mr. Rattner: She left me a not Sunday night in the package and said I put it here, I have a problem with it and gave me a whole list of reasons. She is not here, I called the CFO, and I asked her to just find out what it is. I suspected it may have been that but I am not going to approve a bill that the business administrator tells me she has a problem with because it wouldn’t make any sense.
Mr. Sheard: It would have been nice if she also notified us, we would have gotten rid of that.
Mr. Rattner: That is a separate issue and you have to deal with the administration on that.
Mr. Sheard: This has been going on for quite a while, we are the last ones to know sometimes.
President Guenther: Any other Council Comments?
Mr. Sheard: Other than that I would like to thank the Council for 2003 even though we have had our agreements every now and then. But we are getting our building built; it’s being built with pride and it is not going to be anything expensive like you had for Turkey Brook, I could tell you that. And a construction manager I think were doing a pretty darn good job considering I go to construction sites every day and this is one of the better ones right now.
Mr. Scapicchio: How did we ever make out with Blackstone and the rock issue?
Mr. Sheard: It’s up to them.
Mr. Scapicchio: So you went back and told them no.
Mr. Sheard: We told them no, it’s up to them. Hopefully we are not going to be sued or anything like that, but it is up to them.
Mr. Scapicchio: Have we received any State funding yet for that project.
Mrs. Hilbert: We just got hit.
Mr. Scapicchio: How much did we get?
Rita Hilbert, Library Director: The 40 percent from the grant funds was received just this past week and it is in our cash management account and at the January meeting the Board will approve wire transfer of that and either a check or a wire transfer of that directly in to the Township’s account.
Mr. Scapicchio: How much was that forty percent?
Mrs. Hilbert: $399,000.00
Mr. Scapicchio: I guess we don’t get any more of that state funding until the building is completed.
Mrs. Hilbert: 50 percent completed, we’ll get another 20 percent. It holds up at 10 percent at the end. So it will be 40/40.
Mr. Scapicchio: So we do get progressive payments as we go along?
Mrs. Hilbert: Yes, once we could make the report that says we are 50 percent done then we’ll get the next payment.
Mr. Scapicchio: What are we, 25 percent done?
Mrs. Hilbert: The last payment was 36 percent done, yes. If the weather stays like today, we could get done really fast.
Mr. Scapicchio: The architect signed off on that percentage completed?
Mrs. Hilbert: Yes. The architect signs off first and then Scott signs off on it and then it goes to the Library Board for approval to be paid before it comes to you.
Mr. Scapicchio: Thank you.
1. Approval of Raffle Application #2015 & #2016 for HSA Everitt Academy School.
Mr. Greenbaum moved for approval of the Raffle Applications as listed above. Mr. Scapicchio seconded the motion.
ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously
2. Bill List.
Mr. Rattner moved for adoption of the Bill List of $1.1 million dollars. Mr. Scapicchio seconded the motion.
Vice President Perkins: Council Comments
Mr. Rattner: I discussed a number of items with the CFO earlier today, Why don’t you just go through them. I think by lunchtime 60 percent of them were answered and the others you said you would have by tonight. Why don’t you go through my questions, right of the email?
Mrs. Jenkins: Okay, you had a question about Tilcon the contract, about the $200,000.00 payment we had made for paving. The milling charges being crossed off on the invoice. I spoke to Mark DiGennaro and he indicated to me that there is some remediation work that needs to be done there and he is withholding a portion of the payment which is why you saw the milling charges crossed off on the bill.
Mr. Rattner: The total bill I believe was about $280,000.00 and we are paying $200,00.00 which is for the asphalt that was laid down and I was given a list of the roads that were paved. That was the other question, thank you.
Mrs. Jenkins: So basically they were paved between Hilary and Clover Hill.
Mr. Rattner: Right.
Mrs. Jenkins: Okay. Proforma, I got some information on the Proforma bill that you had a question about. We purchased window clings and window passes.
Mr. Rattner: What’s a window cling?
Mrs. Jenkins: It’s like a pass almost that you stick to the window.
Mr. Rattner: What do we buy them for?
Mrs. Jenkins: He passes are issued to beach patrons to ensure that only the patrons park in the Township Beach Parking Lot and the clings are given to swim lesson participants who visit the beach daily and lifeguards.
Mr. Rattner: Are they reusable?
Mrs. Jenkins: I believe so, yes.
Mr. Rattner: Because we have spent like $2,700 on them. Did you find out what the sign was that is listed on the purchase order; McGreevy’s Law.
Mrs. Jenkins: Yes. They said those signs are needed to make the General Public who use the Parks and Fields aware of McGreevy’s Law.
Mr. Rattner: Okay, I bite. Does anybody know what McGreevy’s Law is? I just thought that was interesting.
Mrs. Jenkins: McGreevy’s Law, I spoke to Keith in the Recreation Department because I didn’t know it myself.
Mr. Rattner: A sign for $700.00.
Mr. Perkins: Then I am really not that concerned about it.
Mrs. Jenkins: Do you want me to explain what it is? I did speak to Keith because I was unfamiliar with the law myself and he indicated to me that it’s legislation that was passed that has to do with conduct or youth sports organizations.
Mr. Perkins: Do we have a copy of this email with the bill list questions on it?
Mr. Rattner: It was an email to me from her after I discussed it with her verbally. I asked her to bring it up tonight because these are the questions that were on there. So it was just that she was going to answer the different issues that came up so that I did not have to ask all the questions.
Mr. Perkins: How many items on there Mr. Rattner?
Mr. Rattner: 718.
Mr. Perkins: Can we compile that into a little ah...?
Mr. Rattner: If we are not interested in what is on the bill list, then we don’t have to review it anymore.
Mr. Perkins: Mr. Rattner, it is not an interest thing.
Mr. Rattner: $2,000 for window clings and signs that you have no idea what it is. To me, if you have a few of those the bill list, it adds up to real money.
Mr. Perkins: $700.00 for a sign.
Mr. Rattner: It was a $2,600.00 bill and I did not know what any of it was. I have asked her though and I thought McGreevey just because it is our governors name, I was wondering if it had something to do with him.
Mr. Perkins: I don’t think it had anything to do with that.
Mr. Rattner: I didn’t know. Thank you. We have two more, right?
Mrs. Jenkins: The Conte payment, I did speak to my accounts payable supervisor and initially we were told to put on a payment for $50,000.00. Then later on, on Friday we were told to void that and then reissue a payment for $44,600.00. So, there is a supplemental Bill List that she handed to Lisa this morning for that.
Mr. Rattner: Just so you know the reason why I asked that question why is because when I went through the bill list, I saw the void, I saw a check in the basket that was not on the bill list. So I asked what happened.
Mr. Perkins: The clerk informs me that we did not receive supplemental Bill List.
Mrs. Jenkins: Okay, Colleen told me that she brought it down.
Mr. Scapicchio: It was in my packet.
Mr. Rattner: It was in my packet too.
Mrs. Lashway: Okay, just this one, just the Conte?
Mr. Rattner: Yes.
Mr. Scapicchio: What is left in that Conte balance?
Mrs. Jenkins: I don’t know offhand, but I will check for you.
Mrs. Lashway: I believe it is $50,000. The number changed because there was less in there and Gene committed to holding the $50,000.00.
Mr. Rattner: We discussed that. That is in accordance with what we discussed.
Mrs. Jenkins: That is what is in there based on the worksheet.
Mr. Scapicchio: There was 90,000 additional charges for the regarding of that football field. Are we all convinced and satisfied that, that field is filled with the specification as we expected?
Vice President Perkins: Correct me if I am wrong. Weren’t you and Councilman Greenbaum talking about going out on the field again?
Mr. Scapicchio: What we talked about was before we released any money that we would inspect those fields and we haven’t done that. I bring that to your attention because I was in the Olympus/Conte deposition of Mayor Licitra last week, in there it came to my attention that there were two sets of plans that identified the football field to be regarded. One that we signed off on that Kyle Conte gave us a price of, a third generation of that that we have not seen that was faxed sometime between the time we authorized that $90,000.00 and prior to Kyle Conte regarding that field, that has different elevations. I still believe that is an open issue.
Vice President Perkins: I would tend to agree with you in mere fact that neither you or Mr. Greenbaum have been able to get out there because of the snow and everything else. I agree.
Mr. Greenbaum: That’s not my recollection of what was discussed at the meeting. I think we had a recommendation from Gene to pay a certain amount of money based upon where the fields were at. Whether or not there is a problem still with the field certainly was an issue and I remember discussing that and discussing my desire to go out to the field and Dave discussed the same desire, but I don’t believe it was tied into us releasing this particular $50,000. As I recall Gene actually said the amount of work which is left to be done was insignificant compared to ultimately the amount of work which had been completed the last time the issue had arisen with regard to this bill. Gene also told us that there is a significant performance bond which is still out there. Whether or not the elevations are correct or not correct, I believe that is something which will be subject of the litigation which we are currently involved with. I don’t believe the money which was withheld relates particularly to that issue. So, my recollection was that we were going to make this payment, that there really was no reason to withhold this payment and we all agreed to move forward with it. The extra $50,000 would be held until such time as we were able to get out to the field to review the work that had been done since the last time the issue was raised, that’s my recollection.
Vice President Perkins: Any other comments on the Bill List?
Mr. Rattner: No. 4 you will be happy to know, we have already discussed, that was Blackstone.
ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously
Turkey Brook Report
Mrs. Jenkins: I was not provided with any report. None at this time.
Mr. Scapicchio: Ray, I would just like to propose that we adopt a resolution that authorized and requests that the Mayor close Town Hall Early tomorrow and let the employees go home a little bit early.
Vice President Perkins: I would agree with that. I would assume we could get something put together as long as it is not essential personnel or if there is some skeleton crews or so, whatever needs to normally be left on those types of days.
Mr. Scapicchio: Peter, can you read something into the record”
Mr. King: Sure.
Whereas the Mount Olive Township Council recognized that there is a holiday approaching; and
Whereas the Council also believed that the employees of the Township have worked diligently throughout the year and have earned a bit of a rest and a break; and
Whereas the Council sees fit that the Municipality can be run with a skeleton crew;
It Is therefore authorized that the Mayor is directed to request the administration to come up with a plan whereby a skeleton crew will be put in place for each department and the remaining non-essential employees will be allowed to go home by 1:00 pm on December 24, 2003.
Mr. Scapicchio made a motion that we accept that resolution. Mr. Greenbaum seconded the motion.
ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously.
LEGAL MATTERS –none to report
Library Board Liaison Report
Mr. Scapicchio: No additional library report.
Recreation Liaison Report - none
Board of Health Report - none
Mr. Perkins: Board of Health did not have a meeting, we could not get a quorum with the members to attend. So Reorganization is set for the 8th of January. That does conflict with the Planning Board so the reorganization meeting will be down in the Court area for that one particular night.
Planning Board Report
Mr. Greenbaum: I think since the last report we had two meetings. We met last Thursday, it was a rather non eventful evening, there were no applications on, I think the meeting lasted all of about 16 minutes. The week before we met and I believe my recollection is that the major application that we heard related to Mahmood’s proposal to put in a shopping center along Route 206. That application was not concluded and will be carried over until the new year. The only other thing from Planning Board I noticed in Mr. Rattner’s and I don’t remember seeing it, but I am sure I got it was well, there was a note from Sandy Geiger indicating the desire to adopt an ordinance as per we discussed where there would be a posting at work sites of the names and addresses of the appropriate contact people, both in terms of the applicant and the Township and the hours that are permitted for work. That was Jim Buell’s proposal. As we move into the New Year, I would hope that early on we could adopt that kind of ordinance.
Vice President Perkins: I agree with you and Jim on that. I would look at the postings if you and Jim are working together on that, or have somebody go into the building department. Most of these construction sites you have the construction trailer, so where would these signs be posted, how would they be accessible for the public. Would it be at the entrance, would it be inside the construction trailer where they could actually hopefully see the construction manager or however it works.
Mr. Greenbaum: I agree with you. I think that off the top of my head, it should be posted at the front entrance to the site so that anyone going from behind can get that information easier.
Mr. Rattner: A lot of developers put that up anyway because they are advertising that they are building houses or whatever they are building.
Board of Adjustment Liaison Report
Vice President Perkins: Most of the matters that were approved, were standard with the exception of Dockrell Beach Yacht Club which was carried until March 15, 2004, that seems to be a non-stop continuing thing as they are looking for certification as a preexisting non-conforming use. So that is the tactic right now, and that will be based upon whether we can collect any of those fines and all that were posed once they determine what the status was of that application.
Master Plan Committee Report –none
Mr. Greenbaum: If I could just add to that, that the resolution adopting the Master Plan was passed by the Planning Board, so whatever happened to it from that point, I know it has to be sent out to the County and ultimately next year we are going to have to take action with regard to recommendations that we are going to have to take within that document.
Mrs. Lashway: It has been submitted to the Council but they only provided one copy. I had Mr. McGroarty look into the contract and they are required to provide 25 copies, so as soon as we get that everybody will have their own copy.
Open Space Committee Report - none
Legislative Committee Report – none
Pride Committee Liaison Report
Mr. Perkins: The last meeting Councilman elect Jim Buell was able to attend at the opening of the meeting, I am sure he got a chance to meet with the people that were in there. The snowflakes are up along the lake as well as outside the building here. A nice addition, I was kind of surprised when Mayor Licitra told me that he actually gotten those. It’s a welcome addition I think to the Lake. Maybe if we don’t do anything with the building, we can mask it with all kinds of nice things along the highway. Other than that they will be meeting and hopefully it will be another good year for them. Under the new administration, hopefully it is one of the things that is on his list to continue to do. That’s up to obviously the availability of funding and other things that are on his agenda.
Board of Education Liaison Report
Mr. Rattner: I don’t know if they had a meeting yesterday, but I have been advised that the school has closed today and will not reopen until the fifth.
Status of Committee RE: Lake/Environment Issue – none
Bob Elms, Budd Lake: In order to take over the ITC South Road, don’t we need to have some kind of a resolution or ordinance to accept the responsibility for that so that when our trucks are there we are accepting liability of them being there?
Mr. King: The Resolution that was just passed with the settlement contains that provision and the Township will be taking over that responsibility for International Drive South.
Mr. Elms: And it is part of the Settlement agreement?
Mr. King: Yes.
Mr. Elms: You were talking about all kinds of things on the Bill List, one was $400.00 another was $2,000.00. On page 10 we have a $139,000.00 that was cast for miscellaneous litigation. I understand that is a yearly bill submitted by Mr. Dorsey for litigation. Has anyone in the Municipality or Administration or the Council reviewed that bill?
Mr. Dorsey: It is all itemized and it is all litigation for the year.
Mr. Rattner: I do that as I do every year. I did go back, I look at the different accounts and then I take I don’t look at each one of them, I take the larger ones, check them back, see what all the individual bills air on the hourly basis what they worked on.
Mr. Elms: That $139,000.00 is all in accordance with the contract?
Mr. Dorsey: Yes.
Richard Bonte, Budd Lake: A couple of questions, last week at the workshop meeting we had three presentations regarding Waster Water Management. Were those in response to some type of solicitation the Township had put out?
Vice President Perkins: To the best of my knowledge they were at the request. We had been informed of the 319H funding requirements through Garden State Engineering who had made the presentation, that was then brought our Grants Coordinator Kathy Murphy. We asked her then to look at some others that were out there to get some Flavor, this is something that will be brought to the Administration next year and then yes on the professional services agreements, somebody is going to be chosen whether just out of those three, or whether there is more to come up. Sooner or later somebody will be chosen.
Mr. Bonte: I was just curious, I was wondering whether they were essentially competing in response to a solicitation, but basically it’s an informative…
Vice President Perkins: It was an information gathering system for the Council and the Public to know that this is something that is available, we need to pursue this in the immediate future so that the funding from the EPA to the DEP becomes available to us.
Mr. Bonte: The next question, I almost hate to bring this up, but what has happened with the dog park? I know there was a discussion on it, a presentation was made, but no action was ever taken.
Mr. Rattner: I believe we said it was a good presentation and we would discuss it in the budget process.
Mr. Bonte: Okay. I would like to just offer a comment to that. Personally I am not in favor of spending Township funds for this. I would like to have the Council maybe entertain a discussion on possibly increasing dog license fees for the next three years. You increase the annual fee by $5.00 per license for the next three years, it would pay for the construction of this park. Something to think of.
Mrs. Jenkins: There is actually a statutory fee, there is a maximum that we could charge them. We are already at the maximum.
Mr. Greenbaum: Not only that Rich, but imagine if…let’s say we put in basketball courts for people who wanted to come and use the courts, the residents, for a pick up kind of game we decided that we were going to charge everyone who wanted to play, $5.00 to play. I understand your concept, but if we are going to do that, we are going to want to do that for all of the different recreational facilities that we put out for different groups and people. This is just one other proposed aspect of recreational activities within the park. I was dead set against the dog park when it was first brought on. I said why do we need this, this is a public relations nightmare, all of the sudden township residents are spending money on putting in a dog park. But I have to tell you, in speaking to other town officials, both elective and administrative, the towns that have the dog parks, they have been extremely successful, they have bee utilized, they have not caused any problem and generally have worked out exceptionally well to the point where I am reconsidering my though and whether or not it is money well spent because I think that it is something which will be used and will actually generate good public relations through the Town.
Mr. Bonte: I realize Mount Olive is changing, but we are not New York City. I certainly hope that maybe some of you on council will debate as to whether or not these types of services are necessary services the government needs to be providing.
Mr. Greenbaum: Let me follow up on the discussion that I had with these elected officials, it was actually very interesting and it occurred down at the League of Municipalities which is one of the reasons why it is of great value to send representatives down to the League of Municipalities. More so than the seminars and the product demonstrations that are done down there. But the ability to speak to other officials offhandedly and to find out what works in town and what does not work in towns. For instance, I had serious questions about the teen center, which you know was being proposed within the Township. It had always been my position that a teen center really attracts children who are already involved in organized programs, that is the type of kids that it attracts, it does not really attract the kind of kids that you really need to reach which are those kids who are out there doing their own thing without any supervision, they are not going to be coming to a teen center, for instance the kids who are out at Fleet Bank skateboarding. I asked several different Township representatives, including I believe Randolph Township
Mr. Greenbaum (cont’d): which already has a teen center and I was advised it is a terrible idea for the same reasons that I had problems with it, because it just doesn’t attract the kinds of kids that you need to attract. Yet when you ask them about a skateboard park, glowing recommendation for something like that because that gets the kids that you don’t get into other programs. I thought that was great. The dog park was just one of the other issues, that I had my eyes open to which is a value to a portion of the Mount Olive population that you don’t otherwise get involved in the park, so that is why I am considering it. Thank you for letting me take some of your time.
Mr. Bonte: Unfortunately a couple of Council people aren’t here this evening. I certainly would like to thank Earl for his many many years of service that he has given the Town. I have always thought that earl probably would have made a great Mayor because of his attitude and views on things. He’ll be missed. Charlene I would certainly like to thank. One of the major events that Charlene and I were involved in was of course, Crown Towers. If it wasn’t for Charlene, many of you probably don’t know this story, but on I believe it was February 10th, of 2000 there was an attempt by the developer to have a meeting here that probably shouldn’t have happened because the appropriate public notification was not given. I received a phone call from Charlene that the meeting was on the way. I got up here as quickly as I could. We were able to have the meeting stopped and have the public appropriately notified and of course at the next meeting we had over 200 people here. Charlene played a major factor in making sure that process was carried out in a proper fashion and that something didn’t happen that may have. Dave, you are going to be missed, I guess it’s been eight years that you have been up here, I have always valued your input, I hope we see you out in the audience. Finally, to all of you and new people that will be on the Council next year, I have been coming to meetings for 13 years. I have seen a lot of things happen, including things like this evening where something is done wrong, and there are comments made, maybe a resolution is passed, no body is ever penalized for their actions. I think there should be, I am talking financial, when people do not follow the law. One thing that everybody should remember and many of you are probably already aware of it. When it comes to the truth, there are always three stages of it. First there is denial, then there is the cover up, and then of course it always comes out. So I am not singling out anyone in particular, but we all need to remember that; no matter what it is, it will eventually come out. The more anybody tries to cover it up, the more embarrassed we become. With that, I thank you Dave, Charlene and Earl for your many years of service. Thank you.
Vice President Perkins: Anybody else?
Colleen Labow, Budd Lake: You lay and you bow, you bow down.
Mr. Greenbaum: What do you mean by that Colleen?
Mrs. Labow: That is how you pronounce it. You lay down, bow down, same action. That is how I explain it. It’s not Loboe. But anyway, I wanted to thank everybody and I wanted to talk to Dave Scapicchio on the record. It has been an honor watching you the past couple years. It is going to be an honor coming up here next month, and I hope I can do as good as a job as you have done in the eight years you have been here, if there’s any particular things that you started and you would like to see continued through, I would like to have the opportunity to try and follow through with, things that you got started. The same thing with Earl and Charlene, they are not here tonight but the same thing, and I just want to say I am looking forward to working with all of you in a few weeks. Thank you. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year.
Vice President Perkins: Any other comments? Seeing none. I will close the public portion. As a point of order, we need to go back and let you know about Ordinance 49-2003. I’ll need a motion to table that.
Ord. #49-2003 Bond Ordinance Providing for Improvements to the Water Utility in and by the Township of Mount Olive, in the County of Morris, New Jersey, Appropriating $151,000 Therefore and Authorizing the Issuance of $151,000 Bonds or Notes of the Township for Financing the Cost Thereof. (installation of meter pits).
Mr. Greenbaum made a motion to table Ord. #49-2003. Mr. Scapicchio seconded the motion.
ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously
Vice President Perkins: Reason being is that we need five votes for a Bond, Earl didn’t show up, so it’s off. That now gets us into Council Comments.
Mr. Rattner: A couple things, obviously we are going to have new people up here. New faces, our people the system have spoken. I remember Earl, 21 years ago on my front steps for the first time when he ran for election which is what we wanted to do. A few years later I followed what he did. Charlene, I have to say it was an interesting ride with her points of view and the way she sometimes would come with things, but she in her way added a lot to this Council. We come to Dave, Dave has been a pleasure. A lot of time I think we were competing against each other, who could do more research, who could find out the answer first. That is going to be surely missed, especially with his background in construction. But the big thing that I respect in Mr. Scapicchio the most is that I could say in eight years, he never lied to me or mislead me on anything. His word was gold. We disagreed a lot, and there were a lot of big issues. But when he said this is what I’m going to do, that’s what he did. He said this is how I am going to back you up or support you, that’s what he did, and so that is going to be surely missed. I am sure that the new people coming on are going to be just as honorable because we are all here for one reason. With that Dave I am sure you are going to keep involved and I will probably still call you for advice because of your expertise in those areas.
Mr. Scapicchio: Thank you Steve.
Mr. Rattner: With that, I just want to wish everybody in the audience a happy and joyous holiday season, whatever it may be, And we are all looking forward to a better, healthier and happier New Year. So with that, Season’s Greetings.
Mr. Greenbaum: I don’t really want to say nice things about Dave because his head is going to get to big. Truly a good friend, I don’t think I am going to miss having Dave up here at all, I know Dave is going to take his seat next to Rich Bonte and we will still be hearing from Dave on all of the issue. I know that in two or four years Dave will hopefully return and I am not saying at anyone’s expense, I am just saying that I think Dave is an asset and will remain a good, friend, and confidant, even though I don’t really like him that much.
Vice President Perkins: I’ll try to keep it as short as I can. Obviously it has been a learning curve for me over the past 10 years. It’s been interesting, the comments from the town without the comments from the tax payers here; everybody already knows how they feel about a subject when they walk up on this dais. If no one has comment, than you can’t sway that opinion. So the more comments you have, the better off the decision making process is because there is more involvement in it. The residents of Mount Olive are always welcome into these chambers so that they can comment. Because without them, some of you people hold a lot more expertise in a lot of the areas than we do up here. We all have full time jobs, so that has worked out pretty well. David, I will miss not having you up here. Both of us come from some construction type background, it’s been interesting working with you. Charlene, a good friend, I was honored when she asked me to do the Cherokee presentation for her. I thought that was very important for her and it was. She’s been a strong environmentalist here in the town. As Mr. Bonte has said, Charlene has always kept her finger on the pulse of what was happening
Vice President Perkins (cont’d): environmentally here. This Township is a lot better for having her there. Earl, the big guy always seems to know exactly what to say, his history of the Township is phenomenal, he has been here long enough. I know him as a dedicated father and a truly dedicated husband and he dedicated an awful lot of time to the Township, where he got that energy from, I don’t think he will ever have. The rest of my fellow Council members, the Administration, the Chief Financial Officer, the Clerk, in my opinion have all done an admirable job, we all make mistakes. The guy who doesn’t make a mistake, I’d like to see him. His initials are J.C because that is the only one I know that doesn’t make any mistakes. However that being said, the only way that you get that corrected, it will run rampant unless good men and women bring it forward. So if people sit back and do nothing, that is exactly what you get. The involvement of the residents as well as the Council looking into things acts by the Administration changes things. To the new folks coming on Board, Mayor Elect De La Roche, Mr. Elms, Mrs. Labow as well as Mr. Jim Buell, who unfortunately had a death in his family today so he is not here with us, I know our prayers go with him. I welcome you guys, next year will be interesting. If we all work cooperatively, I am sure we will work toward the end which is for the tax payers of Mount Olive Township. Everybody enjoy your holiday season, whatever you persuasion is that you celebrate, celebrate in good health, enjoy and I’ll see you all here at the Reorganization on January 6, 2004.
Motion made to adjourn, all in favor, none opposed. The meeting adjourned at 9:10 pm.
Steve W. Rattner
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 February 10, 2004
LISA M. LASHWAY
Mount Olive Township Clerk