Township Council Minutes
March 22, 2005
The Regular Public Meeting of the Mount Olive Township Council was called to Order at 7:30 pm by Council President Greenbaum with the Pledge of Allegiance.
MOMENT OF REFLECTION
OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT ANNOUNCEMENT
According to the Open Public Meetings Act, adequate notice of this meeting has been given to the Mount Olive Chronicle. 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.
ROLL CALL Present: Mr. Buell, Mrs. Labow(7:33), Mr. Mund, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Perkins,
Absent: Mr. Guenther
ALSO PRESENT: Mayor De La Roche; Bob Casey, Acting Business Administrator; Lisa Lashway, Township Clerk; Sherry Jenkins, CFO; Fred Semrau, Township Attorney
President Greenbaum: I know there is one particular issue for which most of you are here. I’ve been doing a little reading and writing on the Forum and my plan is…although, normally, we don’t open up discussion on first reading on ordinances, that I will do that at this point. I want to wait until Colleen gets here, she’s on her way, so that she can hear the discussion. I had the opportunity to speak to Ken Nelson before the meeting tonight and it is likely that the ordinance is going to be tabled this evening for first reading, because it needs to have some revisions to it in terms of where it is to be placed within our administrative code, assuming that it is ultimately adopted and that will put off the first reading for two weeks and will allow for further comment, if there is any, and I spoke to Ken about if anyone had any suggestions in terms of modifying it, that those could be given to us in writing to be considered before the ordinance is read on first reading. The normal process of an ordinance is that it is put on for first reading to see if there is sufficient Council interest to move forward on the topic. During that timeframe, between first reading and second reading, there is usually some dialogue among Council members and interested parties, and ultimately the ordinance is listed for public hearing at some particular point in time where everyone will have an opportunity. As a courtesy, I would ask that you….if you’re going to get up and speak on this ordinance, that you not be repetitive of someone else who has already spoken and we can move it along at that point in time. As soon as Colleen gets here, we’ll move forward with that discussion.
Questions on Bill List?
President Greenbaum: At this point, I would open it up to any Council members who have specific questions on the Bill List that they need clarification on. Mr. Rattner.
Mr. Rattner: Well, I think I just got my answer from Mr. Casey. There was a bill for a tax refund for Mount Olive Industrial Realty, which was the settlement of a tax appeal. However, when I went through the documentation, it showed that the payment would not be in a check, but would be in future credits. So, that will be taken off the Bill List. That is check #47872 to Mount Olive Industrial Realty for $43,740.00, I believe it’s on page two or three.
President Greenbaum: Okay, were there any other questions or comments?
Mr. Mund: Page 5.
Mr. Rattner: I’m sorry. You’re right.
President Greenbaum: Any other questions or comments on the Bill List?
Ordinance #10-2005 Discussion
Ord. #10-2005 An Ordinance of the Mount Olive Township to Establish Section 23-5 of the Mount Olive Township Code.
President Greenbaum: Okay, at this point, since Ms. Labow has now gotten here, we can have the discussion on the particular ordinance related to arbitration. As I indicated, that ordinance is on for first reading, it’s Ordinance #10-2005. At the appropriate time, I’m going to ask a Council member to make a motion to table the President Greenbaum(cont’d): discussion. It’s my understanding that there are significant events occurring at the Firehouse which require various members to leave after this discussion. So, we will take a two minute recess, so that those who have to leave or want to leave after this discussion, can do so. At this point, Ken, if you had something that you wanted to say.
Ken Nelson, Budd Lake: Thank you, Mr. President and members of the Council. We do have a busy night, this is our regular drill night and we just received 45 new SCBA’s that we need to in-service the guys on immediately, to put them in service. I’m the Assistant Chief of the Budd Lake Fire Department, I’m here representing the Fire Department and its membership in our opposition of the proposed ordinance. The Fire Department was surprised that the proposed ordinance was not discussed with any of the effected Emergency Services Organizations. No member of the Council has asked for our input, or even to review the by-laws related to discipline. Arbitration should be the last resort, not only in conflict to resolution, but also in attempting to fix what is perceived by some as a flaw in our discipline process. I would encourage members of the Council to first review our process and determine if there is, in fact, a problem. This has not been done to the best of my knowledge, and based on discussions that we’ve had over the last few weeks with members of the Council. Our discipline process is a progressive one. We choose to try and resolve problems or disputes without having to resort to suspensions or dismissals. In fact, we’ve had very few dismissals of volunteers for disciplinary reasons. The challenge for us, as an organization, is that we do not feel it appropriate to discuss personnel issues in public. That’s common in most work places, while the person who was disciplined can speak freely of their case and sometimes inaccurately. It puts us at a disadvantage, quite honestly, the articles that include disciplinary procedures, misconduct and gross misconduct is two and a half pages long. All disciplinary actions taken by our Chief or our President are referred to our Executive Committee for review. This committee decides if the actions taken by the leadership of the Fire Department are appropriate. In the past, we’ve also consulted with the Township Attorney, John Dorsey, at the time. The only time we did not follow the Township Attorney’s advice, with those consultations, was when he recommended dismissal and we chose instead to suspend. If there was a concern that our Executive Committee is biased, or will not do the right thing, then you need to point out that the Chief, President and Executive Committee and all of our officers take the same oath of office as the Council. If our internal discipline by-law is flawed, it simply takes a majority vote by our membership to change our by-laws. There has been no attempt to change this by-law since the year 2000, when I proposed the current rule. Arbitration is a costly way to resolve disputes. In addition, it’s also a timely process that will add unneeded red tape. If the process is adopted, then there could be logistical problems that would overload the volunteer leadership. The local office of the American Arbitration Association is located in Somerset, New Jersey. The office hours are from 9:00 to 5:00. As a member of the governing body of the Fire Department, I would have to take time off from work to prepare our case with our attorney and attend any hearings. This is restrictive and not workable. I spoke with Karen Harrison Bower, she’s the Regional Vice President of the American Arbitration Association in New Jersey. They currently do not provide this service to any volunteer fire department in New Jersey, that she’s aware of. In addition, she states that this would fall under commercial arbitration, the filing fee is $3,250. A case service fee of $1,250 is then applied, and there is also a fee for the arbitrator, this fee can vary and typically runs $400 an hour. These are also….can be negotiated. Obviously, I didn’t go that far, since it’s not really my place, and this does not include any legal fees. From the American Association website, resolving employment disputes, it is in the interest of all parties to resolve disputes as quickly as possible, therefore, the Association encourages employers to develop an in-house dispute resolution system in an effort to resolve disputes in their early stages. This will minimize the productivity and good-will lost during contracted disputes. We have a process in place already. Triple A, American Arbitration Association, rules require the employer to absorb all administrative fees above $125, a typical filing fee in court, and in all of the neutrals compensation. That’s a quote from their website. Employers also may consider providing a fair method for reimbursement for at least a portion of the employee’s legal fees, especially for lower paid employees. We’re volunteers, we are paid zero. This has been accomplished by tying in legal assistance benefit to the employment dispute program. The site then goes on to state the arbitrator could make provision for the company to reimburse the employee’s legal fees as part of the ruling. If the goal of arbitration is to avoid a lawsuit, then it will work; however, it will not change the fact that legal representation would still be needed and legal costs would still be incurred. While not require, we would certainly, in any arbitration, bring our attorney to protect the interest of the Fire Department and that’s just common sense. If the number of lawsuits regarding the disciplinary actions of the Fire Department are the benchmark, then our process passes with flying colors. To date, this organization has never been sued for suspending or dismissing a member. On a personal note, I don’t feel that is the benchmark, but we’re trying to avoid lawsuits, so I’m imagining that’s what we’re selecting as a benchmark for success here. What concerns me is that some on the Council feels our process is not fair without having first seen our process, nor having met with us to discuss our process. It would seem that the better way to create new policy would be to meet with those involved first, to determine if there is a problem second, and then the last step would be to meet with those involved to try to work out a solution that will be acceptable to all. We’re not dumb firefighters, we need protection from ourselves. We are a sophisticated corporation that has by-laws and fulfills a serious need in this town. We come from all walks of life and from various backgrounds. The organization is coming on its 75th year and has Mr. Nelson(cont’d): evolved with the times to be a progressive and effective charitable corporation. Threatening to remove funding from these valuable services would not be an effective way to create good public policy. We urge the Council to sit down and discuss the issue with our leadership before taking this drastic, expensive and wasteful step. My final comments are my most important comments and I address it to the Township residents as well as the Council. Contrary to statements or conjecture made in articles in the Daily Record and the Mount Olive Chronicle, the Fire Department will always respond to the call. We have taken an oath and are committed to our duty. Even if our funding is completely cut off, we will find a way to fulfill our oath. I have some questions, I don’t know if this would be the appropriate forum or not….
President Greenbaum: Questions relating to what?
Mr. Nelson: Relating to the ordinance.
President Greenbaum: It would be appropriate to identify issues in the ordinance.
Mr. Nelson: Okay. Well, I guess we’ll phrase it as rhetorical and if you choose to answer, I guess that would be fine.
President Greenbaum: Okay. I may not choose to answer, I’m a little gun shy at this point.
Mr. Nelson: No problem. I can’t thank you enough again, Council President, for giving us the opportunity to speak, but here are the questions: What if the member does not have the money to pay for their share of the cost? Will the Council table the proposal and instead meet with the representatives of our organization? Kind of a moot question, because we’re already tabling it, from what I understand, but I guess going forward…..will the town pay for the Department’s legal expenses and the fee for arbitration? Another issue to consider is that if this is approved by the Council, it still needs approval by our membership to be included in our by-laws. What happens if that does not occur? I’m a leader of the group, but it’s a Democratic organization and they have a right to vote on any changes to the by-laws. I can’t guarantee that this would pass. I strongly feel it wouldn’t and I guess I would need to know what happens. If the ordinance is approved and by-laws are amended, what compels the volunteer to use arbitration? We don’t have contracts, the volunteers don’t sign a contract, they receive a set of rules. Will they sign a contract, will we ask them to sign an agreement, and what if they then refuse? What then? The last quote from the Triple A website and I will conclude my remarks. Where clear notice has been given to employees, when plans containing a mandatory arbitration component are implemented, and where the plan is fair, courts generally enforce them. However, the issue of validity of imposed binding arbitration systems that are a condition of employment, is still being litigated. Also, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the National Labor Relations Board have legally challenged pre-dispute, mandatory, final and binding arbitration agreements imposed as a condition of employment. So, thank you for your time.
President Greenbaum: Ken, I would ask that you just jot me a memo with the last portion of the comments… the questions in particular, there were four or five before the last one, so that they can be considered by this Council in determining whether or not the ordinance needs to be revised or whether or not the ordinance makes sense in light of those questions. Thank you.
Mr. Nelson: Okay, we’ll do that, thank you.
President Greenbaum: Thank you. Okay. Freddie, you’re up next.
Fred Detoro, President of Flanders Fire Company and Rescue Squad: It’s a hard act to follow and not be repetitive. He covered just about everything there is. I would just like to state that, at this point in time, the way the ordinance is prepared, we are against it in Flanders. The other thing I would definitely suggest, which is repetitive, that you take the time to meet with the different associations and look over our by-laws and I think at that point in time you will see that they cover almost every incident possible, given the benefit to the members. In Flanders it takes three quarters of a majority to pass a by-law and to suspend or to expel somebody, so it’s…. you have to be pretty off the wall to be suspended or expelled from Flanders and I’m sure the other companies are the same way as that, or similar…they have similar guidelines. Just thank you for your time and hope to see you and I’ll be open to hear from you with our by-laws if you’re willing. Thank you.
President Greenbaum: Thank you Fred. John.
John Morris, Captain, Budd Lake First Aid: As you said, tough act to follow and try not to be too repetitive, but we share some disappointment that we weren’t engaged in this research early on. No one approached us to0 actually take a look at our process. How does a person become suspended or expelled, what’s their appeal
process and what are the opportunities for them to try to seek remedy within the organization? We’re obviously opposed to this, we don’t feel that we need it. We feel that we have a very effective process in place for just fair discussion and we try very hard not to suspend individuals. We haven’t had any suspensions in recent time. Most times, when we’ve removed somebody, it’s because they basically retired, they stopped coming by their own lack of response to correspondence, it’s more the technicality of taking them off the books. I have some concerns about this ordinance, I fear that it will inject a new level of stress and potentially hurt morale. As these things go on, you heard earlier that trying to resolve them timely is very important. Dragging out, going to arbitration prolongs this, it makes for an awful difficult time when you’re stuck in the back of a rig with a bunch of people that are constantly bickering or concerned about things that are going on, and I think this contributes significantly to it. I think that the threat of using arbitration could be quite disastrous to leadership. It would undermine our authority as well as our accountability to make sure that we follow the by-laws that are out there. I have to have certain levels of experience and certification and automatically deal with suspension of people that don’t provide the necessary credentials and if someone were to come back and say well, I can’t get to it yet and I’m going to take it to arbitration, it’s a threat that could be applied that, you know, has no business in what we’re doing. We’ve heard a lot about the increased costs, originally the ordinance said that there would be a fifty-fifty split. If it was fifty-fifty, that’s a significant cost for us. If it’s as high as some of the things that we’ve heard tonight, it’s even, you know, much more of a nightmare. We would certainly be looking to tack that onto our budget and be looking to trying to get some compensation back from the Township when these things happen because, you know, the costs could be severe, legal costs, arbitration costs, things of that nature. The last thing…I think Kenny talked to it, is the fact that we try to deal with things internally. We deal with some pretty private situations and some stressful situations and we don’t really want this to be dragged through the public and I think that having this process out here, just opens the door for public discussion, debate and dragging this out, getting in the papers, and all kinds of things that I don’t think benefit the community, they clearly wouldn’t benefit our membership in general. So, I would respectfully ask that you table this and I would respectfully ask that you table it beyond the two weeks you spoke of, but give us the time to work with you to find a solution, to deal with our concerns and make sure that whatever goes forward from the governing body meets everyone’s needs. Thank you.
President Greenbaum: Thank you. Yes, sir.
Harry Brown, Vice President of Operations for the Mount Olive Soccer Club: Thanks for inviting us to the party. Once again we, the Mount Olive Soccer Club, are finding ourselves in the position of playing catch up to efforts by Town Council to somehow remedy faults within our and other volunteer organization processes that all of a sudden have been deemed as unsatisfactory. Now it is possible, possibly having to comply with an arbitration process by an ordinance that truly doesn’t take into effect the ramifications that could be imposed upon us if we were to stray from guidelines and by-laws as written by our county, state and national governing bodies, as offered in these documents which I’ll leave up front or e-mail. The term volunteer can be likened to that of a person or individual’s driving privilege. It is a privilege that can be revoked if you do not adhere to a set of binding rules governing your activities as such. If a person violates these rules, their privileges could be revoked. By being a volunteer is to also agree and abide by a set of rules as outlined by the group you have volunteered to assist. If you don’t like the rules, you don’t join. If you violate the rules of the group, you generally do so understanding in full the penalties of your actions or inactions depending on the offense. We, the Mount Olive Soccer Club, do not have a position on what took place within the Budd Lake Fire Department, regarding a disciplinary matter involving one of its members that may have propelled this sudden need to correct a perceived inadequacy of their rules and those of other volunteer organizations. If this is the situation, then I’m sure that any parties involved would seek resolution within their governing bodies such as the New Jersey Volunteer Fire Fighters Association, or perhaps the National Volunteer Fire Fighters Association, and permit that process to run its course. As for the Mount Olive Soccer Club’s concern regarding this ordinance, we must first abide by our governing bodies at the County, State and National levels and in straying from those directives, we are risking our in-good-standing status as members, which could lead to expulsion and loss of membership insurance that are superior to that afforded to us by the Township. If, as a way of example, a person or persons was found in violation of a rule that warranted suspension indefinitely by us locally, at county, state and national youth levels, this decision was upheld. This ordinance, as written, would still require us to comply with an outside arbitration process at significant cost to us, since we would have to bring in parties and representation from each of the three levels. At which time, if an arbitrator were to find for the claimant and reverse a decision from any one of our governing bodies, we would be unable, without risking expulsion from, to comply with its findings and unfortunately be prohibited from agreeing to its unbinding agreement in the first place. Additionally, our national governing body of the United States Soccer Federation already has in place an outside arbitration process, Rule 706, via the American Arbitration Council, but it is at their discretion and not the Township’s that we would first have to comply with. While we would tend to believe that an arbitration Mr. Brown(cont’d): process is good for paid employees in protecting their rights in the workplace, we are against any Township legislation and/or ordinance that could or would jeopardize our group’s ability to maintain and run our organization within the guidelines and rules we follow that have been carefully drafted, accepted and established by our county, state and national bodies. In closing, last week we heard commentary from a resident regarding the baseball field lighting matter who stated….that they were against government policy that affects residents. That person, I believe, is Mr. Council President. So, our question is are not these same residents part of the volunteer groups whom this matter is being referred to?
President Greenbaum: Do you want a response to that?
Mr. Brown: Absolutely not.
President Greenbaum: I’ll tell you what I really said at the MOBAG after the meeting.
Mr. Brown: Thank you for your time. Respectfully, the Board of Directors of the Mount Olive Soccer Club.
President Greenbaum: Thank you. Anyone else from the audience? Dawn.
Dawn Foote, Budd Lake: I came to this Council asking for a resolution to give the volunteers something to protect them. Unfortunately, I don’t agree with what was said here. I have a three inch binder full of documentation to back it up, but the courts will decide that in our case. The volunteers give a lot to this community and they should have something in place. This was originally issued for Fire and EMS. We’re a little bit different than, but not less important, or more important than any other volunteer in this community, alright, but I still think we need something in place to protect us. I found this out through, unfortunately, what happened with my husband. You know, I’ve heard people say avoid lawsuits, there is a process in their by-laws to avoid lawsuits, it wasn’t used, that’s why I’m here. I’ve gone to New Jersey State Fire Fighters Association and the NJ National Fire Fighter Association, I’ve gone to the Exempt and Relief Association, I’ve gone through any and every possible organization associated through the Fire Company to get help and the end result is having to put a large sum of money to fight something that we should never have had to fight for to begin with. By-laws are wonderful, if they’re applied equally across the board, not certain rules for certain people. It’s been documented, it’s there and, unfortunately, it’s going to eventually hit the newspapers. That’s why I asked for this so it wouldn’t have to get to this point. I know as a volunteer I want to be protected. I know my organization many many years ago was run very differently than it is run today. Would I be protected back then? No. I’m an officer so, yes, it’s a little different for me now, but who’s to say ten years from now I will be. Nobody has a crystal ball in this room, nobody can prove that, that’s why we need a volunteer protection act. I did not intend for this to have to affect all the other sports groups and things of that nature, I put that….you guys have a copy of my original proposal, it was for the Fire and First Aid. The state spends a lot of money on recruitment and retention, why not have a safeguard? That’s what this was for, it was for the volunteers, although they have turned this totally around, this was for the volunteers and I think, ultimately, in the end, arbitration will be a lot less expensive than litigation, but they don’t have to foot the dime out, I do right now, but down the road, maybe officers will think about the actions they take to make sure that it doesn’t have to go into arbitration, that the rule applies to everyone, not just a certain few. Maybe if they have to sit down and foot their dollar, like I’ve had to foot mine, maybe they’d feel a little differently. I hope you consider the Volunteer Protection Act, they are a great group of people, very knowledgeable, very well educated. You’ve guys have put a lot of time and money and efforts into these organizations to keep us going over 75, 50 plus years, and it’s a shame you lose experience, because of personality conflicts, because that’s what really this is ultimately all about. People don’t like being questioned, especially people of authority, but that will be decided in the courts. Please consider the resolution, I think it would be a very good resolution to protect the volunteers. I would like to see it stay for the First Aid and the Fire, I think……I’m not happy that it was pushed onto all the other volunteers, I’m not happy with the way this was proposed to people. I was under the understanding, Mr. Casey said at the workshop, that they were all discussed. He quoted to me that he spoke to Mr. Cirone and one of the Officers of Flanders, but did not speak to anybody at Budd Lake First Aid. So, I don’t want a reflection of me, I did not keep this a secret, I submitted this back in August, I sat a two Workshops discussing it, so it was no big secret, it’s just that who attends the meetings. Thank you.
President Greenbaum: Thank you, anyone else from the audience, without being repetitive? Alright, at this point, I will close it to the audience, but I’ll open it up to brief discussion from the dais if the Mayor or any Council members have anything that they want to say on this issue, this is an opportunity, there will be other opportunities to discuss the issue. I certainly have something that I want to say, but I’ll open it up….Ms. Labow.
Ms. Labow: Thank you. I just want to say that a lot of people seem to misunderstand the purpose of this ordinance and it certainly is not to interfere with any of the organizations’ by-laws or their process or anything else. If you read the ordinance carefully and I understand we’re going to still do some more work on it, this is only available after every appeal process has been exhausted and if a volunteer still feels at that point that they have not had a fair shake or a fair hearing or whatever, at that point they, along with the organization, have to put up half the money and I think that, at that point, after they have exhausted everything, when they have to put out money out of their own pocket, they might evaluate do they really feel they were unjustly, you know, treated? I also feel that the organization might be a little more careful making sure they do adhere to the by-laws, I’m not saying that anybody doesn’t now, but you might want to take another closer look or whatever and make sure that the by-laws are adhered to. It’s a last resort for the volunteers is my understanding of this ordinance and, of course, we need to have everybody’s input and that’s what this whole process is about, to get everyone’s input, and see if it does work for everybody and if everybody is in agreement, and that’s all I have to say.
President Greenbaum: Thank you, anyone else from Council? Mayor.
Mayor De La Roche: I just want to say that my position hasn’t changed on this since day one. Originally I was approached by certain parties asking me to intercede. I told them and I’m sure they’ll verify it, that there is an administrative process that is part of the organization and all those steps should be exhausted long before we involve the Mayor and Council in these matters, and that position has not changed and I don’t see any reason to change it myself, but I don’t vote on these things, but at the same time, I think it’s important that if volunteers want something like this, that’s for the volunteers to decide, but I don’t see it being forced on anybody who volunteers their time. I personally don’t like things forced on me and I don’t believe I should do it on anyone else. So, my position has not changed from day one. If the volunteer organizations get together and they want American Arbitration to intercede in their business, that’s certainly their right and I have no problem with that, but if they don’t, I have no problem with that either. So, I continue to have the same belief that I had way back when this first opened up, I guess….I don’t know how long ago it was, August maybe, but my position has not changed, I still support the volunteers and their independence and I think that’s necessary, because that’s what volunteerism is all about. Thank you.
President Greenbaum: Anyone else? I guess I’ll have the last word and then we’ll take a two minute recess. There’s been a lot of things which have been said on the Forum(nj.com) in terms of my interest in this particular ordinance and, to be quite honest with you, I have no personal agenda, I really don’t care, personally. People have said that I’m doing this for one person or another person and that’s completely untrue. I do this because I believe that it is something which is needed. An issue has been uncovered, I didn’t want to get involved in specific facts of a decision because I don’t believe it’s the Council’s position to resolve disputes that arise within volunteer organizations. Every time the factual issues came up, I said look…I really don’t want to hear them, it’s not my place. I don’t want to tell the volunteer organizations how to write their by-laws or what they should put in their by-laws, it’s not my place. Volunteer organizations have to be self-governed and have to decide, based upon the particular organization, what’s right and what’s wrong for any particular organization. Obviously, some organizations have different needs than other organizations do. When you run into a building that’s on fire, you need to know that the people who are behind you are on the same page with you and far be it from me, or anybody else sitting up here on Council, to make those by-laws for the organization. What I do believe and what I believe is the underlying factor here is something which Dawn identified, and that is a need for some independent review that the by-laws which are being used to discipline are adopted properly and are being…..that the procedures are being followed pursuant to the by-laws which you, as a volunteer organization, adopt. I’m not telling you what it should be or where you should go with it, only whatever you decide, it should be applied evenly, so that everyone knows that you’re moving along in your pursuit of whatever the organizational goals are and that you’re protected by the by-laws which govern the organization, whatever those by-laws may be. That’s really where the need for this ordinance has arisen, in my mind, and why I so fervently have taken up the position in favor of the ordinance despite obviously a lot of criticism, but you know what…I sit up here and I took an oath, just like you did, to do what I think is right irrespective of whether or not it’s politically the right thing to do, for me, and I believe, honestly, that there is a need for an independent review to make sure that, as I said, the by-laws have been adopted properly and that they have been administered properly, that’s it. I wholeheartedly agree that if an organization has adopted the by-laws and has followed their procedure, that organization should succeed, and arbitration, no matter how you put it, is going to be cheaper than litigation, and I don’t see it as a situation which is going to be invoked often. As you yourself said, how often does a situation arise where someone is kicked out or someone is suspended, it happens rarely, and in those instances, how often is it going to be actually taken to a level that is going to require arbitration, even rarer. I mean, we may see one case or two cases per decade where it would go that far, and the fact that it does cost money, really is an added factor in certain ways, because someone would really have to have a desire to spend significant dollars of their own to go that route to say, you know what, this is so important to me to be a volunteer in this organization, and I feel my rights were so neglected under the by-laws that I am willing to President Greenbaum(cont’d): spend $2,000 or $3,000 of my own money to try and get a resolution of the issue which I believe is fair. Now, the other option that’s available to the individual now is simply to file a lawsuit and if someone actually feels that their rights have been violated, they’re going to file that lawsuit and it’s going to be incredibly more expensive and an incredibly longer trek and an incredibly more public arena than the arbitration proceeding. So, that’s why I have gone out of my way to try and explain, maybe a little bit more than explain, my position on this issue and I still believe that this is the right ordinance, although I’m willing to hear from the groups any suggestions they may have for an independent meaningful review that the by-laws were adopted properly and enforced properly. That is the issue to me and that should be an important issue to all of you sitting here, because all of you are protected by the by-laws that the organization ultimately adopts and you should want those by-laws to be enforced evenly by the organization, and I’m not saying that they weren’t in any particular instance, that’s not what this is about. Having said that, I will ask for a motion to table for two weeks at the current time, if we need to table it again, we can do that. Lee, did you want to make such a motion?
Mr. Mund: I was going to make such a motion.
Ms. Labow: Second.
President Greenbaum: All in favor?
President Greenbaum: All opposed?
President Greenbaum: Motion carries, Ordinance #10-2005 is tabled for two weeks for first…..for April 12th for first reading. In the meantime, if anyone has any suggestions…..
Mr. Mund: Yes, I do. If we could get copies of the different by-laws so that we can make a comparison?
President Greenbaum: Okay.
Ms. Labow: Mr. Greenbaum.
President Greenbaum: I’ll have the Clerk send out the appropriate letters. Ms. Labow.
Ms. Labow: I just wanted to ask one question. Before this came to this point, we had asked Mr. Casey to meet with all the groups. Did that happen?
President Greenbaum: You know what, we don’t even need to go there.
Ms. Labow: Okay.
President Greenbaum: It doesn’t really make much of a difference at this point. If anyone has suggestions, in terms of the ordinance itself in light of the issues which have been addressed here, I would ask that you supply them to the Town Clerk and all issues will be considered. If there are significant suggestions which appear reasonable, they will either be incorporated or a meeting will be established to discuss those issues. Just because the ordinance is coming up on April 12th, it’s a moving forward process. If there are still issues related to the ordinance, it can be revised and moved to a different meeting, so it’s a public process of getting the ordinance to where we need it to be. With that, I’ll adjourn the meeting for two minutes. 8:10 pm
President Greenbaum: The meeting is called back to order at 8:18 pm.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS
February 8, 2005 Present: Mr. Buell, Ms. Labow, Mr. Guenther (8:46), Mr. Rattner, Mr. Perkins,
Absent: Mr. Mund
February 22, 2005 Present: Mr. Buell, Ms. Labow, Mr. Mund, Mr. Guenther (7:31pm), Mr. Rattner
Absent: Mr. Perkins
March 1, 2005 CS Present: President Greenbaum, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Buell, Mrs. Labow, Mr. Guenther,
Mr. Perkins, Mr. Mund
President Greenbaum: We left off with Approval of Minutes of Previous Meetings. Mr. Buell, would you move those Minutes?
Mr. Buell: I move the Minutes of February 8th, February 22nd and the Executive Council Session for March 1st.
Mr. Mund: Second.
President Greenbaum: Is there any discussion, comments, changes? Seeing none, Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously, except Mr. Mund abstained from February 8th and Mr. Perkins abstained from February 22nd
LETTERS FROM RESIDENTS
1. Letter received February 18, 2005, from New Jersey Office of the Attorney General Regarding Mount Olive Union Cemetery.
2. Letter received February 23, 2005, from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society regarding MS Walk.
3. Letter received February 25, 2005, from the National Gypsy Moth SEIS Team regarding Gypsy Moth information.
4. Letter received February 28, 2005, from Budd Lake Volunteer Fire Department regarding 75th Anniversary Parade and Celebration – June 24, 2006.
5. Letter received March 3, 2005, from Mount Olive Area Chamber of Commerce regarding the 50th Anniversary Celebration.
6. E-mail received March 4, 2005, from Anne Wisnewski regarding $50K dedication to Russ Nagle Field
7. E-mail received March 11, 2005, from Mark A. Przybyszewski regarding parking on Victoria Drive.
8. E-mail received March 14, 2005, from Karen Clint, 4 Sunset Drive, regarding lights at Turkey Brook Park.
9. Letter received March 15, 2005, from Robin Chu, 37 Crenshaw Drive, Flanders regarding lights at Flanders Park.
RESOLUTIONS, ORDINANCES, CORRESPONDENCE FROM OTHER TOWNS
10. Ordinance received February 22, 2005, from Allamuchy Township proposing an amendment to the Land Development Ordinance.
11. Resolution received February 23, 2005, from the Township of Randolph opposing the enactment of Assembly Bill A-3529 requiring municipalities to pay employees who become disabled while on the job both full ordinary disability pension payments, as well as worker’s compensation benefits at the same time for the same injury.
12. Resolution received February 24, 2005, from the Township of Pequannock regarding bestowing more lucrative benefits on members of the Police and Fire Retirement System.
13. Resolution and Final Equalization Table received February 25, 2005, from Morris County of Taxation regarding assessing the taxable values to be used in levying taxes.
14. Resolution received February 25, 2005, from the Borough of Califon regarding support of alternate routes to property tax reform.
15. Resolution received February 28, 2005, from the Borough of Butler regarding certain benefits to members of the Police and Fire Retirement System.
16. Resolution received February 28, 2005, from the Town of Dover regarding Governor Codey’s Legislation Establishing Student Loan Forgiveness Plan for Social Service Workers.
17. Ordinance received February 28, 2005, from Washington Township regarding Land Use.
18. Resolution received March 2, 2005, from the Township of South Brunswick objecting to the federal government’s cuts to community development block grant funds.
19. Ordinance received March 3, 2005, from the Township of Jefferson establishing Chapter 368 of The Jefferson Township Municipal Code Entitled “Possession or Consumption of Alcoholic Beverages by Persons under Legal Age.”
20. Resolution received March 4, 2005, from the Borough of Riverdale regarding immediate and comprehensive property tax reform.
21. Notice received March 7, 2005, from the Hackettstown Planning Board regarding a public hearing on an amendment to the Master Plan to include the Stormwater Management Plan.
22. Notice received March 9, 2005, from Byram Township regarding a hearing on proposed adoption of an amendment to the Byram Township Master Plan.
23. Ordinance received March 9, 2005, from the Borough of Netcong regarding Land Use.
24. Letter received March 10, 2005, from Gary W. Whyte regarding Proclamation / Resolution on Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva (FOP).
25. Ordinance received March 10, 2005, from the Township of Roxbury regarding Land Use.
26. Resolution received March 11, 2005, from the Township of East Hanover supporting reinstatement of the property tax reimbursement program as initially developed & urging members of the State Legislature to Support the adoption of Assembly #3627.
27. Resolution received March 16, 2005, from Town of Dover regarding continued support for Picatinny’s Armaments Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC)
DOT / DEP / LOI
28. Letter received February 18, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding 2005 Municipal Aid Program.
29. Letter received February 22, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding Morris Chase Block 4400, Lot 79 (64 Goldmine Road, Budd Lake)
30. Letter received February 24, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding Morris County YMCA Dam.
31. Letter received February 24, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding Morris County YMCA Dam - File No. 25-67.
32. Letter received February 24, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding Old Hickory Estates – Single Family Development Block 3507; Lot 3 and 4. (Timberline Ave.)
33. Letter received March 2, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding West Morris Regional High School, Washington Township.
34. Letter received March 4, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding Margaret Scotti Block 2302, Lot 5 (1 Hudson Road, Mount Olive)
35. Letter received March 4, 2005, from Careaga Engineering, Inc. regarding General Permit #25 Application to Repair Septic System Block 8100, Lot 2 (353 River Road)
36. Letter received March 8, 2005, from the State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection regarding Modified Solid Waste Facility Permit, Morris County MUA Mt. Olive TS/MRF Block 4500, Lot 5 (Flanders-Netcong Road)
37. Letter received march 9, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding High Noon Bar and Grill Block 7701; Lot 3.
38. Letter received March 11, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding Estate of Joseph Sawojzczk Block 7600, Lot 73 – Agency Determination: Highlands Act – Not exempt Water Quality Management Plan – Inconsistent (80 Flanders Road)
39. Notice of Public Hearing received March 14, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding Application No. 5353 to divert water from 4 existing wells and 6 proposed wells in Mount Olive Township, Morris County.
40. Letter received March 14, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding Approved Existing Floor Plan for: Morris County MUA Block 4500 Lot 5. (129 Flanders- Netcong Road)
41. Letter received March 16, 2005, from EcolScience, Inc. regarding Letter of Interpretation Block 107, Lot 3 and Block 104, Lots 2 & 4 (650, 700 International Drive)
42. Letter received March 16, 2005, from the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection regarding Compliance Evaluation and Assistance Inspection & Notice of Violation – Turkey Brook Park.
LEAGUE OF MUNICIPALITIES
43. Letter received February 22, 2005, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding a League Seminar: The Other Green of Brownfields Redevelopment: How to Plan, Design, Clean-up, Finance and Manage Brownfields for Open Space and Recreational Use.
44. Letter received February 22, 2005, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding League Labor Relations Seminar.
45. E-mail received February 22, 2005, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Kelo v. New London Case to Be Argued Before U.S. Supreme Court Today.
46. Mayors Fax Advisory received February 24, 2005, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding Federal Transportation Reauthorization.
47. Letter received march 7, 2005, from the New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding League Seminar in cooperation with the Tax Collectors and Treasurers Association of New Jersey.
48. Mayor’s Fax Advisory received March 10, 2005, from New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding the Mayor’s 2nd Annual Property Tax Summit: Tax Relief Now or Never.
49. Mayor’s Advisory Fax received march 16, 2005, from New Jersey State League of Municipalities regarding COAH 2nd Round “Extended Certification.”
50. Invitation received February 18, 2005, from the Mount Olive Public Library Board of Trustees to the Dedication Ceremony.
51. Newsletter received February 24, 2005, from the Council on Affordable Housing regarding Municipalities that did not received 2nd round Substantive Certification, Development Monitoring Fees mailed out.
52. Letter received March 1, 2005, from National League of Cities regarding Leadership on the Line: Meeting the challenges of Leading Local Government.
53. 2005 call for Nominations received March 3, 2005, from the National League of Cities regarding nomination deadline.
54. Letter received March 3, 2005, from Morris County Community Development regarding Federal Administration’s Proposed 2006 Budget and its effect on the Community Development Block Grant Formula Program.
56. E-mail received March 4, 2005, from Morris County Chamber of Commerce regarding upcoming Legislative Breakfast.
57. Letter received March 7, 2005, from the South Branch Watershed Association regarding Hunterdon County Green Table.
MUA / MSA
58. Letter received March 7, 2005, from Musconetcong Sewerage Authority regarding Service Contracts / Sale of Gallonage.
59. Minutes received March 7, 2005, from Musconetcong Sewerage Authority regarding February 2, 2005 meeting.
60. Letter received February 22, 2005, from Keyspan Business Solutions regarding Jersey Central Power and Light Company Vegetative Maintenance along right of ways, various municipalities and counties in New Jersey.
61. Fax received February 24, 2005, from Comcast regarding Adult on Demand PPV Price Adjustment.
62. Letter received February 24. 2005, from Jersey Central Power and Light regarding clearance operations.
LETTERS FROM LEGISLATIVE REPRESENTATIVES
63. Letter received March 3, 2005, from Acting Governor Richard Codey regarding creating a balanced budget.
64. E-mail received March 11, 2005, from Congressman Frelinghuysen regarding House Passes Major Transportation Bills; Frelinghuysen honored for Leadership in passage of Highlands Conservation Act, Frelinghuysen and top Morris County Officials Announce $1 Million for Law Enforcement Communications Network, and Federal Funding to help Ease Traffic and Improve Safety on Route 22 in Somerset County.
65. Summons received March 14, 2005, in the matter of Dattolo Properties, Inc.
66. Summons received March 14, 2005, in the matter of Mount Olive Sewer Utility and Dattolo Properties, Inc.
President Greenbaum: Next item are letters and correspondence, it’s about half of our agenda…letters and correspondence, there are 66 pieces of correspondence. Does anyone wish to comment on any? Mr. Buell.
Mr. Buell: Number seven, the parking on Victoria Drive. This is a recurring issue that keeps coming up and is going to come up next year because the High School is going to have no parking for students at all. I think we should indicate, because I don’t know where these kids are going to park next year.
President Greenbaum: Well, I’ve scheduled it for discussion April 5th on Victoria Drive only. We have tried to resolve the issue in certain fashions where we’ve dealt with a series of streets which were not requested and it raised other issues, so we will deal with it on a street….as difficult and as time consuming as it may sound, we will deal with it on a street-by-street basis as the residents petition us, at this point in time. Ms. Labow.
Ms. Labow: Are we going to notice all the residents?
President Greenbaum: It’s already been done.
Ms. Labow: Thank you.
President Greenbaum: Any other comments on any piece of correspondence?
Mr. Mund: I couldn’t help but comment on Resolution #27. The Town of Dover processed a resolution supporting ARDEC the government research and development command at Picatinny to….in lieu of the…. coming up, urging the importance of that facility and, as a former employee, I can only say that it is truly a unique facility and I commend Dover for doing that and….should we?
Ms. Labow: Yes, we could too.
Mr. Buell: We should too, I think.
Mr. Rattner: Hey, if we did it for the trout….
Ms. Labow: Yes, we did it for the trout, let’s do it for Picatinny.
President Greenbaum: I’ll ask the Clerk to put it on for the next public meeting. Mr. Buell.
Mr. Buell: Number 39, four existing wells and six proposed wells…..I suspect this is Country Oaks Estate again…..this is the hearing that’s being….that Gene Buczynski has asked to be moved up here to Mount Olive, rather than be held down in Trenton.
Mrs. Lashway: It’s Morris Chase.
Mr. Buell: This is Morris Chase? Have they moved that meeting up here, or….
Mr. Semrau: That’s correct. Gene’s letter has gone to them. We have not yet received a response from DEP on that request.
Mr. Buell: I also sort of think somebody from the Council should get to that meeting, wherever it is.
President Greenbaum: I’ll have the Clerk’s office send an e-mail to all Council members indicating if anyone can make the meeting. Anyone else want to comment on any particular piece of correspondence?
ORDINANCES FOR PUBLIC HEARING
President Greenbaum: Seeing none, we’ll move onto Ordinances for Public Hearing. The first Ordinance for public hearing is Ordinance #4-2005, entitled:
Ord. #4-2005 An Ordinance to Amend and Supplement Various Articles of Chapter 400 Entitled “Land Use” to Implement a Recommendation of the Mount Olive 2003 Master Plan and Master Plan Reexamination Report to Eliminate the Existing Planned Adult Community Regulations and to Create a New Age Restricted Residential Zone District.
President Greenbaum: At this point, I’ll open it to the public. Anyone who wishes to discuss this particular ordinance, now is the time. Seeing none, I will close it to the public and ask Ms. Labow to move Ordinance #4-2005.
Ms. Labow: I move for adoption and final passage of Ordinance #4-2005.
Mr. Buell: Second.
President Greenbaum: Any discussion from Council? Seeing none, Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
President Greenbaum: I declare that Ordinance #4-2005 is passed on second reading and I hereby direct the Clerk to forward a copy of same to the Mayor and publish the notice of adoption as required by law. The next Ordinance for public hearing is Ordinance #5-2005, entitled:
Ord. #5-2005 Bond Ordinance Providing for Turkey Brook Phase III Improvements in and By the Township of Mount Olive, In the County of Morris, New Jersey, and Appropriating $314,833 Therefor and Authorizing the Issuance of $299,090 Bonds or Notes of the Township to Finance Part of the Cost Thereof.
President Greenbaum: At this point, I will open it up to the public for discussion. Seeing none,
I’ll close it to the public and I would ask Mr. Mund to move it.
Mr. Mund: I move for adoption and final passage of Ordinance #5-2005.
Mr. Buell: Second.
President Greenbaum: Discussion. Mr. Rattner.
Mr. Rattner: Just to remind everybody…these bonds are going to be paid out of the existing Open
Space Fund that the voters voted affirmatively for three separate times over the last fifteen years.
We raise about $600,000 - $700,000 a year. That’s where this money will be coming from, it has no
effect on the taxes. Why we were bonding on it, was a request from the Open Space Committee that
we spread out the payments for this improvement so that they don’t lose their flexibility if some
open space comes about that they want to be able to move on very quickly. I believe we have about
a million dollars in that fund, or we will during the course of the year, Ms. Jenkins?
Ms. Jenkins: Right now we have about $1,156,000.
Mr. Rattner: Okay. So, it’s a well funded fund, supported by the public and it’s being used for
what the ordinance so stated, and referendum.
President Greenbaum: Any other comments? Seeing none, Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
President Greenbaum: Since that was a bond ordinance, it needed five votes for approval, which
it did get. Ordinance #5-2005 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. The next
ordinance up for public hearing is Ordinance #6-2005, entitled:
Ord. #6-2005 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Acquisition of a Portion of Lot 9 in Block 5401 Owned by the Mount Olive Township Board of Education to be Transferred to the Township of Mount Olive and the Transfer of Property Known as Block 7600, Lot 74 from the Township of Mount Olive to the Mount Olive Board of Education.
President Greenbaum: I’ll open it up to the public for discussion. Is there anyone from the public who wishes
to speak on this particular ordinance? Seeing none, I’ll close it to the public and ask Mr. Mund to move it.
Mr. Mund: I move for adoption and final passage of Ordinance #6-2005.
Mr. Buell: Second.
President Greenbaum: It’s been moved and seconded. Is there Council discussion? Seeing none, Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
President Greenbaum: Ordinance #6-2005 is passed on second reading and I hereby direct the Clerk to
President Greenbaum(cont’d): forward a copy of the same to the Mayor and publish the notice of adoption as
required by law.
Ms. Labow: Mr. Greenbaum.
President Greenbaum: Yes, Ms. Labow.
Ms. Labow: I would like to ask the Mayor if…I understand he has ten days to sign this ordinance, but due to
the…..that time is of the essence for the Board of Education, if Mayor De La Roche would be so inclined to
perhaps sign this ordinance so that we don’t hold up the Board of Ed any further than they’ve already been held
up on this.
President Greenbaum: Mayor, a request has been made to sign the ordinance at this present time, is that
something that you’re prepared to do?
Mayor De La Roche: No.
President Greenbaum: Do you have specific issues related to this ordinance?
Mayor De La Roche: No, I want to read it over before I sign it.
President Greenbaum: Oh, you haven’t read it at this point?
Mayor De La Roche: Yes I have, I want to read it again.
President Greenbaum: Okay. That request was denied by the Mayor and it will be forwarded to him in due
Ms. Labow: Thank you.
President Greenbaum: the next ordinance for public hearing is Ordinance #7-2005, entitled:
Ord. #7-2005 Refunding Bond Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive, in the County of Morris, New
Jersey Providing for the Advance Refunding of Certain General Improvement Bonds, Series
1998 and 1999, Certain Sewer Utility Bonds, Series 1998 and Certain Sewer Utility Refunding
Bonds, Series 1999 Appropriating $11,965,000 Therefor and Authorizing the Issuance of
$11,965,000 Refunding Bonds of the Township Consisting of $7,970,000 General Improvement
Refunding Bonds and $3,995,000 Sewer Utility Refunding Bonds for Financing the Cost
President Greenbaum: This is the refunding issue which was brought to us by the Auditor, which currently is
not….the interest rates prevent us from moving forward, however, we’re moving forward in the event…with
what we need to do, in the event that the interest rate scenario changes and we can take advantage of the
refunding, which ultimately was to lead to better than a tax point savings. At this point, I’ll open it to the public
for discussion on Ordinance #7-2005. Seeing none, I’ll close it to the public and I would ask Mr. Rattner to
move Ordinance #7-2005.
Mr. Rattner: Thank you Mr. President. I move for adoption and final passage of Ordinance #7-2005.
Mr. Perkins: Second.
President Greenbaum: Any discussion? Ms. Labow.
Ms. Labow: Is there an expiration time for this, because as these bonds are paid, the figures will change. So,
how would that work? How long would it be in effect for?
President Greenbaum: Perhaps Sherry could answer that.
Ms. Jenkins: We don’t really have an expiration time at this time. I’m assuming that if it doesn’t go through
by the end of the year, then it’s basically going to be a done deal in the books.
Ms. Labow: But even a couple of months from now, these numbers will change because we’ll be paying down
on this, so these won’t be exactly the same. So, we would just have to amend it, Mr. Semrau?
Ms. Jenkins: We don’t have any principal payments due until August at this point, so….
Ms. Labow: Okay, so we have time.
Ms. Jenkins: Yes.
Ms. Labow: But if the numbers should change, we will have to…..
Mr. Semrau: Well, if it would increase, but if it’s going to be less than the amount you’re authorizing, I don’t
believe you would have…..
Ms. Labow: Okay, so it doesn’t have to be the exact numbers that are in here.
President Greenbaum: Yes, this is an ordinance which would be prepared by Bond Counsel.
Ms. Labow: Okay.
Mr. Rattner: And it can’t be any more, because the issue was that the interest rates went up and we miss it by
a couple one hundredths of a percentage point.
President Greenbaum: Any further discussion? Seeing none, Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
President Greenbaum: Ordinance #7-2005 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. The next
ordinance for public hearing is Ordinance #8-2005, entitled:
Ord. #8-2005 An Ordinance of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Amending and
Supplementing Chapter 176 Entitled “Parks” of the Code of the Township of Mount Olive.
President Greenbaum: At this point I will open it to the public, Mr. McDonald.
Ned McDonald, Budd Lake: One question, paragraph 176-3, sub-heading D, I’m sorry….E, one person says hiking shall only be done on designated trails/pathways. How do you define hiking, and does that construe to mean that if you stray off of the designated path, it’s going to be illegal?
Ms. Labow: Mr. Greenbaum.
President Greenbaum: Yes.
Ms. Labow: I think I may have a quasi-answer for that. I think what that refers to is because it is Green Acres property and probably Mrs. Murphy might be able to answer this better than me, we don’t want people straying off from most of the designated trails because there’s a lot of sensitive area throughout the park and I do believe that was why that was put in there and, you know, certainly somebody doesn’t walk exactly on a path, you walk a few feet over, that’s not what this means, it means more like making your own paths for different areas that were not there.
Mr. McDonald: Well, so in effect, the way it’s written, you cannot stray off of the designated trails and pathways, you’re not permitted anywhere except that in the park.
Ms. Labow: I see what you’re saying.
President Greenbaum: Well, there are a number of revisions which were suggested by the Recreation Advisory Committee.
Mr. McDonald: I think that’s pretty restrictive. You’re really telling people that you can’t just take a walk in the park.
President Greenbaum: Ned, I understand your point and it obviously wasn’t intended to read that way and it does read that way and, what I’m saying is that there were a number of revisions which were suggested President Greenbaum(cont’d): throughout the document by the Rec Advisory Committee….not on that particular paragraph, but with respect to other issues and I’m just trying to get a feel from Council as to whether or not they feel that this should be sent back for a revision and if that’s the case, your issue could also be addressed at that point in time to reflect the limiting nature of that particular language.
Mr. Mund: What I was going to do after Ray was going to move it, I was going to move to table it with a suggestion to….and a resolution for tonight to address the fire lane, no parking at Turkey Brook to solve the immediate problem of the parking situation this spring and do that, and then table it and bring it back and let the groups re-write it because there are several issues associated with this.
President Greenbaum: Well, it can’t be tabled, it would have to be defeated and then modified. Your suggestion as to the parking issue is something which could be dealt with separately. Ned has raised a particular issue with regard to paragraph E, which has to be now taken a look at, but…you know, I’m sure that the literal meaning which you have given it, which obviously is what the ordinance says, is not what was intended.
Mr. Mund: That’s right, so we should defeat it.
Mr. Semrau: Well, I also think the key word in that section is…it says not designated or customarily used for such purposes, so there’s a sense of reason there that, you know, what would be considered a customary type of use.
Mr. McDonald: Well, I think that it’s vague and conceivably somebody could get into a situation where there’s several different interpretations, that I just would not want to be that person if I’m walking across the park and some official construes it to mean that I’m not on a designated trail or pathway.
President Greenbaum: Well, I think I would just eliminate that entire sentence about hiking. Hike wherever you want to hike.
Mr. McDonald: That’s what I would do. Thank you.
President Greenbaum: Yes, I mean, hiking is walking. If you want to walk through the park through the woods, you know, I don’t want you blazing a trail, but that’s….blazing a trail is not hiking. Hiking is simply walking.
Mr. McDonald: I think it’s covered by you can’t deface or destroy things.
President Greenbaum: I would remove that entire sentence, it’s a good point, and there are other issues which were identified. Jim, did you want to come up and speak, or…did you want to speak about it or if we defeat this and send it back for a revision, that would be sufficient? Okay. Is there anyone else who wanted to talk about this particular ordinance in light of the fact that it’s likely to be defeated? Mr…..Paul, if you would.
Paul Stefiniw, Budd Lake Heights Road: I just want to make a couple comments, I guess, on corrections also, unless we should just mark them up and hand them to somebody, is that better?
President Greenbaum: That would be better. Send it to Mr. Semrau, who now has the revisions that…..if you give it to the Clerk, it will be passed along to Mr. Semrau for revision.
Mr. Stefiniw: Okay, how about questions? I have a question and I don’t know….I don’t know if I can assign a number to it, but I don’t know if anyone has thought about it. There’s a …..176-7, section A, parking opening hours from sunrise…..about the second sentence in….from sunrise to 8:00 am no excessive noise be generated in the park. Do we need a definition for excessive noise?
Mr. Semrau: Well, you could go to the model noise code, but now that you bring it up, I think it may be helpful if we do define that, because that’s always a difficult interpretation.
President Greenbaum: The township has a noise ordinance, so it should be consistent with the noise ordinance.
Mr. Stefiniw: It would be consistent with the use in the park?
Mr. Semrau: We could probably cross reference it though, as far as what the decibel would be.
Mr. Stefiniw: That would be good.
Mr. Rattner: Yes, the noise ordinance is very specific, it gives the decibel level as it crosses residential property lines and it’s any kind of noise, it takes the hours and the day of the week, because there are different hours when you could have noise, on Sunday you have less, and that is the model that came from the State.
Mr. Stefiniw: So, will it fit comfortably in with this ordinance or is it contradictory? I don’t know the ordinance, Steve, that’s why I’m asking.
Mr. Rattner: Well, I think they say excessive noise, when we have a noise ordinance that identifies excessive noise. At night you can’t, you know, you have the right to not have more than 55 decibels, I believe, across your property line from residential and it was mainly made for commercial, you know, when you had the residents in your shopping center or quarries, that type of thing. So, I think it would fit in there. The noise ordinance is pretty hard anyway, because by the time you get the person who’s been certified on the equipment, because you can’t just send anybody up, and then actually still see it going on. I think with loudspeakers or something like that, which has been the major complaint, I think that should be very very easy and usually what happens, the Police went out and said cut it out, they cut it out right away.
Mr. Semrau: I’ll look into cross referencing it and making sure that……because this is a park as well, so…. what’s excessive noise?
Mr. Stefiniw: Okay, that’s right. One other thing, Mr. Semrau, in section 176-3, sub-section G, which says no person shall hunt, molest, chase, tease, throw missiles at animals, birds and such….I don’t see any disclaimer in here allowing the township to do any type of animal control, whether it be deer harvesting, chasing the geese away or anything like that. I don’t know if you might want to work something in like that.
President Greenbaum: Thank you. If you would pass those suggestions along to the Clerk so that they can be passed along. Mr. McDonald.
Ned McDonald, Budd Lake: Sorry, I just forgot this other one, 176-7 hours. The park will be open from sunrise to sunset. Could some provision be made for amateur astronomers, people who like to go out and look at the stars, meteor showers, etc.
President Greenbaum: My initial thought, Ned, is that once you start opening up the….once you start opening up Pandora’s box, everyone becomes an…..everyone becomes a….anyone who’s in the park after it closes, becomes an astronomer, and I think that….
Mr. McDonald: There could be some process…..
Mr. Rattner: You know, most of these things in there that, when special situations come up, if there is a club that wants to meet some night, they would come and the Council would give them dispensation, that’s related to even the noise. If you remember, the High School has an all night cancer walk in June. They knew, they read our ordinances, they figured out that they had to obey the noise ordinance, so they came to the Council and we passed a resolution for that one night, for that organization, we would allow them. If there is a group that says we want to meet at a certain time, we would do the same thing, but I think you have to understand the major reason for closing it during non-daylight hours is strictly for security, security and damage. We’ve had a number of vandalism, you know, vandalized pieces of equipment, safety of the public, so it’s pretty hard to say…it would be really easy, I mean, it was like my mother still talks about the glass submarines that used to look out over the Long Island Sound. Everybody would go up there and say I’m star gazing.
Mr. McDonald: I fully understand that. I fully realize the security issue, I think if you could make it relatively easy for a group of people or even one person who wants to watch a meteor shower….if there’s some way that permission could be granted on some kind of a basis, without making it totally bureaucratic.
Mr. Rattner: I think it would have to come up, because otherwise you would open it up, because how can you say one person had a legitimate reason to see the stars and another person doesn’t. It’s a practical matter.
Mr. Semrau: And I think, along those lines, it says unless otherwise posted, so that avenue is still available if someone were to come forward and have a circumstance where they, you know, wanted to be in there after sundown.
Mr. McDonald: Just so there’s some thought given to it, yes.
Mr. Rattner: Just like a beach party too, because we open the beach periodically at night.
President Greenbaum: Thank you. Anyone else from the public? I guess at this point I’ll entertain a motion to defeat. Mr. Mund, did you want to make that motion?
Mr. Mund: I move to defeat Ordinance #8-2005.
Mr. Perkins: Second.
President Greenbaum: Okay, so a yes vote is to defeat.
Ms. Labow: Can we have Council discussion?
Mr. Rattner: Can we do that? I mean, it’s already been moved….no you move it and second it. You just vote no.
President Greenbaum: That’s fine too, we’ll do it that way.
Mr. Mund: I move for adoption and final passage of Ordinance #8-2005.
Mr. Rattner: Second.
President Greenbaum: You didn’t need to second it if it was going to get defeated. In any event, it’s been moved and seconded. Council discussion.
Mr. Buell: We did this last year. We didn’t have an ordinance all last year. We need the parking ordinance. I would recommend we pass it and then modify it because it’s going to be not until April 12th that we can get it back here and it’s going to be a month after that and now we’re talking the park is going to be open. I think it’s better than nothing. I think it needs to be modified. I agree with many of the comments that were made by the Recreation Committee, but I think we should pass it because I don’t think it’s that bad.
Ms. Labow: I’d have to agree with Mr. Buell on that point and at the very least, if we choose to defeat it and it’s going to be a few weeks before we get this rolling and we will have the parking situation. Perhaps we should pass the resolution again like we did at the end of the season last year to show that we can enforce the no-parking areas and the one other question that I had is that I don’t see anything in here, in particular it was a problem at Turkey Brook Park with the loudspeakers and the games and functions, I thought that was prohibited at Turkey Brook Park, are we prohibiting it anywhere? Are we just going with the noise ordinance?
Mr. Semrau: Well, the noise ordinance really should cover…
Ms. Labow: It does cover it.
Mr. Semrau: Yes, so, it really should be okay and, you know, cross-referencing it here is…..you know, it’s just overdoing it, but it’s just for clarification purposes. I think it’s there already, but I don’t have a problem with putting it in because it just makes it that much easier if we’re going back and we’re going to make some changes.
Mr. Casey: I think that Mr. Buell is correct. We went through this, we incorporated it in one document, everything that you wanted. Yes, there are further revisions, but I think the reality is that by the time you go back to the Recreation Committee and come back here, you’re looking at July or August before it’s going to be on the agenda. Most, if you look at the changes that are in this, that everybody has agreed to, there are only a few areas here that people are concerned with, the biggest one being hunting, that’s a moot issue to the fall. I think you have to address that, or the issues that I’ve raised about a different definition of open space, I thought that everybody was pretty much comfortable with a lot of the original suggestions for changes. So I think, you know, given the time constraints, given the fact that you’re going into the summer season, in order to give the Police the necessary authority they have, not only for parking, but also for traffic control and speeding and stuff, you may be wiser to adopt it and then go for an amendment. It’s easier to amend.
President Greenbaum: Mr. Farley, could you come up to the microphone for a second? Jim, I have a memo from the Recreation Advisory Committee with respect to changes.
Jim Farley, Flanders Recreation Committee Chairman: That’s correct.
President Greenbaum: The issue has been raised that perhaps it is better to pass this ordinance and do a revision based upon the suggestions that have been made here tonight and that have been included in the memo from the Rec Advisory Committee. Do you see any problem with moving forward in that fashion?
Mr. Farley: No, I’d say we should table this or revoke it and start over. This is…..as we saw the….how many were there, there were 15 type changes we had not to mention what was here tonight.
Mr. Casey: No there weren’t. There actually aren’t. If you look at them carefully, most of them are already covered.
Mr. Farley: One, two, three…..what’s that? Mr. Casey, what was that?
Mr. Casey: Most of them are already covered in that and they’re not really changes in it, they are just comments. Several of them say they agree, they agree whatever the change may be, and you’re referring to the memo from Laura Szwak.
Mr. Farley: That is correct, that is one of them.
Mr. Casey: And the biggest issue there that’s being raised is the issue of hunting in the parks and I think that’s an issue that is so controversial that you may want to consider that as a separate matter in order to avoid that, destroying any and all attempts to put rules and regulations in place. I think that’s an issue that needs to be looked at, as I indicated. I think it needs to be a separate ordinance on open space and define certain areas that you want to allow that to occur, but I think that’s a separate issue and I would hate to see all the other requirements that the Chief came up with and everybody else came up with, in terms of refinements in the existing park ordinance. By the way, hunting is currently not permitted in parks, on your existing ordinance, that’s the existing rules of the town. So, all I’m just saying is there are changes that you’ve asked for, many of them are fairly small and they can be addressed easier than I think it would be to redo the whole ordinance.
President Greenbaum: Well, I think that there’s been….unless you have something further that you want to add on this, Mr. Farley….
Mr. Farley: If you keep things…the hunting and the open space, let’s put that in there, preserve the, you know, the same rules apply to the, you know, what we stated here, right then is, you know, areas preserved as open space, we want to omit that line, we want to get that taken out right away, alright, because we want to protect the undeveloped open spaces. It’s the same thing that’s in B&H and so forth….is that B&H considered part of the park?
Mr. Casey: What I’ve suggested to you is that we need a separate ordinance establishing the rules that you want in open space, which could very well be different from these rules, it would not be difficult to basically reference open space, repeat these things with certain exceptions. I think that’s reasonable.
Mr. Farley: Are you going by the….definition of open space, what do you define that within the park?
Mr. Casey: I would define it by location.
President Greenbaum: You know what, it’s an issue which is going to have to be addressed. The issue now is whether or not we move forward with the….we can’t simply…..we can scrap it and start again, or we can move forward with this ordinance and amend. It’s been the Business Administrator’s position and I believe Mr. Buell and Ms. Labow’s position to move forward with the ordinance as it currently stands and amend it with respect to the issues that you’ve identified, through the Rec Advisory Committee and those issues which have been brought up here tonight. Those are the two separate issues that we have to deal with. A yes vote is a vote to pass it and amend it at some future….look to amend it at some future point, a no vote is to scrap the ordinance. Unless you have something further that you want to add, Mr. Farley….
Mr. Farley: No, that’s it, but when do we start doing the amendments?
President Greenbaum: The amendments will be, you know, you would need to pass along through the Clerk’s office, to Mr. Semrau, those changes that you…if there are any additional.
Mr. Farley: Okay.
Mr. Buell: I would recommend we put it on for the next workshop.
President Greenbaum: It’s been put on for approval by way of motion and second. Unless there is further….
Mr. Mund: I think he would like…..
Mr. Buell: I’d like to put the amendments on for the next workshop so that we can, you know…..
President Greenbaum: Not a problem.
Mr. Mund: I think one of the issues that has not been talked about is posting signs for hunting on our properties, whether it be no hunting, hunting, and permits for hunting.
President Greenbaum: Yes, we’re not going to get into that issue right now.
Mr. Mund: I understand that, but that’s part of the existing…the way it is; and again, I will say if we defeat it, we should pass a resolution tonight for the fire zone no parking at the Turkey Brook and that will take care of the immediate problem of the parking.
Ms. Labow: Like we had to do last year.
President Greenbaum: I understand that, let’s not put the cart before the horse. At this point, there is a motion on, which has been seconded for approval of Ordinance #8-2005. Is there further discussion from Council? Seeing…..
Mr. Semrau: Just…the only thing I would want to add, Mr. Council President, the only thing that came up so far that could create some confusion, is the issue about hiking and there’s already been comments on the record if there was ever an issue. So, if you went forward tonight, the record already reflects this, in what would become the ordinance, and then you could always go back and make your amendments, but this puts it in place.
President Greenbaum: I’m not overly concerned about Ed and his men hanging out in the woods waiting for people to stray from the paths. Is there any further discussion? Seeing none, I’ll ask the Clerk to call the Roll. A yes vote is to pass it at the current time, with the understanding that I’ve scheduled the possibility for amendments for the next workshop. A no vote is to scrap it and start again. Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Mr. Buell, Ms. Labow, Mr. Greenbaum – Yes
Mr. Mund, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Perkins – No
President Greenbaum: So, that’s a three-three and it goes…..it’s defeated.
Ms. Labow: Mr. Greenbaum, can we….for the very next meeting, pass a resolution to get the parking like we did last time?
President Greenbaum: We can do it this evening.
Ms. Labow: Can we do it?
President Greenbaum: If Mr. Semrau is prepared to put a resolution together on the fly like Mr. Dorsey does. The next ordinance…..
Ms. Labow: Mr. Greenbaum, could it just be the same one we had last year? I mean, it’s the same exact issue.
President Greenbaum: It has to be read into the record, though.
Ms. Labow: Okay….but, I mean, we already have it, so….
President Greenbaum: Do you have a copy of it?
Ms. Labow: Not with me.
President Greenbaum: The next ordinance for discussion is Ordinance #9-2005, entitled:
Ord. #9-2005 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Acquisition of Lots 42.01 and 20
in Block 3700 Owned by the Dorothy Bruun.
President Greenbaum: Is there anyone from the public who wishes to discuss this issue? Seeing none, I will close it to the public and I would ask Mr. Perkins, why don’t you move that one?
Mr. Perkins: Thank you Mr. President. I move for adoption and final passage of Ordinance #9-2005.
Mr. Mund: Second.
President Greenbaum: Any discussion? Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
President Greenbaum: Ordinance #9-2005 is passed on second reading and I hereby direct the Clerk to forward a copy of same to the Mayor and publish the notice of adoption as required by law. You have a lot of signing to do this week, Mayor.
Mr. Mund: Can we request that the Mayor prioritize the transfer resolution for the school, the ordinance for the school?
Ms. Labow: That’s why I asked him if he could do it tonight, but….
President Greenbaum: You know what, you can ask the Mayor to do that, I’m not sure that we have the power to tell the Mayor to do anything, but you can request it. There’s been a request that you prioritize Ordinance #6-2005 because of the timeframes involved and the school issues that are very time sensitive.
Mayor De La Roche: Sure.
President Greenbaum: Is that it, Mr. Mund?
Mr. Mund: That was it.
President Greenbaum: Thank you. That wraps up the Ordinances for Public Hearing.
ORDINANCES FOR FIRST READING (2nd reading 4/26/05)
Ord. #10-2005 An Ordinance of the Mount Olive Township to Establish Section 23-5 of the Mount Olive Township Code.
President Greenbaum: We’ve already taken care of the first ordinance for first reading and we’re moving on to Ordinance #11-2005, entitled:
Ord. #11-2005 An Ordinance to Amend Chapter 400 Entitled “Land Use” More Specifically to Modify and Clarify the Residential Density Standard for Low Income Senior Citizen Housing as Established in the R-2SC Zone District.
President Greenbaum: And that’s down in Flanders, correct? The Lutheran Villages.
Mrs. Lashway: Yes.
President Greenbaum: Okay, and Mr. Mund, can you please move that ordinance?
Mr. Mund: I move that Ordinance #11-2005 be introduced by title, and passed on first reading, and that a meeting be held on April 26th, 2005 at 7:30 pm at the Municipal Building, 204 Flanders-Drakestown Road, Mount Olive, New Jersey, for a public hearing, consideration of second reading and passage of said Ordinance, and that the Clerk be directed to publish, post and make available said Ordinance in accordance with the requirements of law.
Mr. Perkins: Second.
President Greenbaum: Council discussion. Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
President Greenbaum: Ordinance #12-2005, entitled:
Ord. #12-2005 An Ordinance of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing a Revision to the Code of the Township of Mount Olive, Part 1, Administrative Legislation Chapter 4, Administrative Code Article XV, Budget, Purchasing and Expenditures Section 4-73 Band and 4-73C Entitled Procedure for Payment.
President Greenbaum: Ms. Labow, can you move Ordinance #12-2005 for first reading?
Ms. Labow: I move that Ordinance #12-2005 be introduced by title, and passed on first reading, and that a meeting be held on April 26th, 2005 at 7:30 pm at the Municipal Building, 204 Flanders-Drakestown Road, Mount Olive, New Jersey, for a public hearing, consideration of second reading and passage of said Ordinance, and that the Clerk be directed to publish, post and make available said Ordinance in accordance with the requirements of law.
Mr. Mund: Second.
President Greenbaum: Discussion? Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
President Greenbaum: Ordinance #13-2005, entitled:
Ord. #13-2005 An Ordinance to Amend and Supplement Chapter 102, Entitled “Documents, Fees for Copies of” Section 102-1 Entitled “Fee Schedule” of the Mount Olive Township Code.
President Greenbaum: Mr. Rattner, can you move that please?
Mr. Rattner: Thank you, Mr. President. I move that Ordinance #13-2005 be introduced by title, and passed on first reading, and that a meeting be held on April 26th, 2005 at 7:30 pm at the Municipal Building, 204 Flanders-Drakestown Road, Mount Olive, New Jersey, for a public hearing, consideration of second reading and passage of said Ordinance, and that the Clerk be directed to publish, post and make available said Ordinance in accordance with the requirements of law.
Mr. Perkins: Second.
President Greenbaum: Discussion. Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
CONSENT RESOLUTIONS AGENDA:
Resolutions on the Consent Agenda List are considered to be routine and non-controversial by the Township Council and will be approved by one motion (one vote). There will be no separate discussion or debate on each of these resolutions except for the possibility of brief clarifying statements 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 RE: Tulip Park.
2. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Execution of a General Release in Connection with the Mt. Olive Township Police Department’s Service Account with Verizon Wireless.
3. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mt. Olive Authorizing the Release of Performance Guarantees Posted by Joseph Dellechiaie.
4. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Release of Performance Guarantees Posted by Motiva Enterprises – Route 46 Shell.
5. Resolution Determining the Form and Other Details of Not to Exceed $11,965,000 General Obligation Refunding Bonds, Consisting of Approximately $7,970,000 General Improvement Refunding Bonds and $3,995,000 Sewer Utility Refunding Bonds of the Township of Mount Olive, In the County of Morris, New Jersey and Providing for the Sale and the Delivery of Such Bonds to RBC Dain Rauscher.
6. Resolution Determining the Form and Other Details of $3,215,000 General Obligation Bonds, Consisting of $1,430,000 General Improvement Bonds, $465,000 Water Utility Bonds and $1,320,000 Tax Appeal Refunding Bonds of the Township of Mount Olive, in the County of Morris, New Jersey and Providing for Their Sale.
7. Resolution Providing for the Combination of Certain Issues of General Improvement Bonds of the Township of Mount Olive, in the County of Morris, New Jersey into a Single Issue of Bonds Aggregating $1,430,000 in Principal Amount.
8. Resolution Providing for the Combination of Certain Issue of Water Utility Bonds of the Township of Mount Olive, in the County of Morris, New Jersey into a Single Issue of Bonds Aggregating $465,000 in Principal Amount.
9. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Execution of a Developer’s Agreement Final Major Subdivision Approval Between the Township and Gen III Builders, Inc. in Connection with Block 7801, Lot 41 Fox Chase – Section. II
10. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Mayor to Execute a Treatment Works Approval Permit Application in Connection with the Application of Speicher/Waterloo Valley Properties.
11. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Rejecting All Bids (1) Tandem Axle Roll-Off Truck.
12. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Awarding a Contract to Robert & Sons for (2) Tandem Axle, 25 Cubic Yard Capacity Refuse Collection Trucks.
13. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive In Support of Calling for Full and Fair Funding in the TEA-21 Reauthorization.
14. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive, Morris County RE: COAH Fee Ordinance.
15. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Awarding a Contract to Robert Hoover & Sons for (2) Recycling Trucks with the Transfer of Existing Bodies.
16. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mt. Olive Reducing the Performance Guarantees for ABC Child Care.
17. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mt. Olive Extending the Time for the Completion of Improvements in Connection with Wyndham Pointe Section 4.
18. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Execution of a Developer’s Agreement (Preliminary & Final Site Plan Approval with Associated Design Wiavers and Variances) Between the Township and CWM Properties, LLC in Connection with Block 3300, Lot 19.
19. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Amending the Temporary 2005 Budget for All Funds.
20. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing a Grant Application to the Morris County Historic Trust for 2005.
21. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Supporting the Community Development Program and Urging Congress to Restore its’ Funding.
22. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Cancellation of 2004 taxes on Block 8300 and Lot 15, 508 Mine Hill Road.
23. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Awarding Contracts for the Supply of Uniforms.
24. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Supporting the Participation in the 2005 Fair Share Assessment with the Morris Chapter’s MCARP.
President Greenbaum: The next item for discussion is Consent Resolutions Agenda. Does anyone wish to have any of the 24 Consent Resolutions removed to the Non-Consent list? Seeing none, I would ask Mr. Perkins to move the Consent Resolutions Agenda.
Mr. Perkins: Thank you, Mr. President. I move for adoption of Consent Resolutions number 1 through 24.
Mr. Mund: Second.
PUBLIC PORTION ON CONSENT RESOLUTIONS
President Greenbaum: Is there anyone from the public who would like to discuss any of the resolutions which are on the Consent Resolutions Agenda? Seeing none, I’ll close it to the public.
COUNCIL COMMENTS ON CONSENT RESOLUTIONS
President Greenbaum: I have asked for Council comments on any of the 24. Mr. Buell.
Mr. Buell: Just on number 1, Tulip Park. I walked over there and went up and down and around the park area and I did find one family that did express the opinion that we should keep the park open as is and improve it and clean it up, and they would be willing, actually, themselves do a lot of the cleaning.
President Greenbaum: Any other discussion? Mr. Rattner.
Mr. Rattner: Now that we brought up Tulip Park, I would just suggest…..I don’t have any problem with moving it, but since funds are tight and unless we could do it just with in-house labor with no additional cost or parts that have to be purchased, if not I would just put that off, however, once we have the resolution, then they can do it when time is available. I just want to state I will be voting no on 12 and 15 capital, even though it’s within the Sanitation District. When I approve the bonding for the refund of tax appeals, I said that that….. because I didn’t like the way, all the bonding that we were doing, that I would not be approving other bonds and so, these are the first two that came up.
Ms. Labow: Mr. Rattner brought up a good point about the cost of moving the equipment at Tulip Park to Turkey Brook. I think the estimates were in about the $10,000 range and the only problem that we do have is if we don’t move it, we have an expense in bringing it up to code and if we do move it, we have an expense as well. So, it’s something we might want to consider what are we going to do with it?
President Greenbaum: Okay, any further discussion? Mr. Perkins.
Mr. Perkins: Thank you, Mr. President. Question, Mr. Casey, on the…..and just going to the Consent Resolution number 1, only because it’s convenient for Tulip Park. The fencing around the well, have we undertaken anything in that regard?
Mr. Casey: That’s in place.
Mr. Perkins: It’s in place? Is that secure now? Okay, thank you.
President Greenbaum: Any other comments?
Ms. Labow: I have a comment in regards to Mr. Perkins’ comment. I’ve asked….it has not come up yet on the agenda, but I had asked Mr. Buczynski’s firm to investigate the well-head protection ordinance, as they passed in Chester a couple of months back, and it is a very specific ordinance and I think we’re going to have to determine if we want to go ahead with that and there will be a cost to that so I would like to put that on a workshop.
President Greenbaum: Fine.
Mrs. Lashway: Are we going to wait until we get something back from him?
Ms. Labow: He’s ready to go with the explanations on the cost and perhaps the reasons…..he had their professionals review it and what it is is we…..our public wells, we have no problem, but there are some private wells that service the public and in order to enforce with the…..what’s you call it, the Homeland Security Act, we can’t exactly demand that they do well-head protection when it’s private, but their private wells service the public.
President Greenbaum: Okay, any other comments? Seeing none, Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously, except Mr. Rattner voted yes with the exception of 12 and 15
RESOLUTIONS NON CONSENT
25. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mt. Olive Retaining Fletcher Platt, P.E., of Hatch, Mott, McDonald. (Dattalo Litigation)
President Greenbaum: The next item for discussion is Non Consent Resolutions. Mr. Rattner, can you move number 25, please?
Mr. Rattner: Thank you, Mr. President. I move the resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Retaining Fletcher Platt, P.E., of Hatch, Mott, McDonald, and this has to do with the Dattalo litigation.
Mr. Perkins: Second.
PUBLIC PORTION ON INDIVIDUAL RESOLUTIONS
President Greenbaum: It’s been moved and seconded. Is there anyone from the public who would like to discuss this particular resolution? Seeing none, I’ll close it to the public.
President Greenbaum: Anyone from Council? Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
President Greenbaum: At this point, we’re going to take a two minute recess because we need to address the parking resolution and we’re going to pull last year’s resolution. (9:03 pm)
President Greenbaum: I’m calling the meeting back to order (9:10 pm) with the Non-Consent Resolutions portion of our meeting. At this point, I am going to ask Mr. Semrau to read Non-Consent Resolution #26 related to emergency parking.
Mr. Semrau: Resolution #26. Emergency Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive regarding parking at Turkey Brook Park. Be it resolved by the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive that the Mount Olive Police Department is requested to enforce the restriction dealing with parking at Turkey Brook Park, specifically that no vehicles shall be parked at any place within the park except in the areas designated for parking.
Mr. Mund: So moved.
Mr. Rattner: Second.
PUBLIC PORTION ON INDIVIDUAL RESOLUTIONS
President Greenbaum: Is there any discussion from the public?
COUNCIL COMMENTS ON INDIVIDUAL RESOLUTIONS
President Greenbaum: Seeing none, any discussion from Council? Roll Call
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
President Greenbaum: Alright, you’ll have that prepared for my signature?
Mr. Semrau: Yes.
President Greenbaum: Next discussion item are Motions. Mr. Buell, can you move the Peddler’s Permit, please?
1. Approval of the Renewal of a Peddler Permit for Martin Osborn for Ice Cream Vending and Avshalom Gibli for Mobile Food Vending.
Mr. Buell: I move the approval of the renewal of the Peddler’s license for Martin Osborn for Ice Cream Vending and Avshalom Gibli for Mobile Food Vending.
Mr. Mund: Second.
President Greenbaum: Discussion? Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
President Greenbaum: Raffle Applications, Ms. Labow.
2. Approval of Raffle Application #2074 for the Parents Club Mount Olive High School; Raffle Application #2075 & #2076 for the Jewish Center Mount Olive; and Raffle Application #2077 & #2078 for PTA Mount Olive.
Ms. Labow: I move for approval of Raffle Applications #2074, 2075, 2076, 2077 and 2078.
Mr. Mund: Second.
President Greenbaum: Discussion? Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously
President Greenbaum: Mr. Mund, will you move the Bill List, please?
3. Bill List.
Mr. Mund: I move the Bill List, but I have a question, are we removing check #47872?
Ms. Labow: Which page is that?
Mr. Mund: Page 5.
Mr. Rattner: That’s the Mount Olive Industrial Realty, which I still take the position that we don’t have to pay it. I asked our Counsel, who is also a CPA in the State of New Jersey and in municipal accounting, and he stated that it is acceptable to use it as partial payment or against current taxes, and since we have a court order on it.
President Greenbaum: Sherry, do you have something you want to add on that?
Ms. Jenkins: Yes, if I could. I spoke to Gary about this. We cannot take a 2004 appeal and apply it against 2005 taxes. So, we will get you something in writing about it tomorrow.
Mr. Semrau: Well, the judgment is dated February 25th, so we have 60 days to make…..
Ms. Jenkins: We also spoke to John about it as well.
Mr. Semrau: Okay. We have 60 days, so we do have time.
Mr. Rattner: I want to pull it off, because I can’t believe we couldn’t have a receivable or a payable and then offset against the taxes receivable on a certain date.
President Greenbaum: So, Lee, your motion is to approve minus that particular item?
Mr. Mund: Yes.
President Greenbaum: Is there a second?
Ms. Labow: Second.
President Greenbaum: Discussion? Roll Call.
ROLL CALL Passed Unanimously, except Mr. Perkins abstained
President Greenbaum: Administrative Matters, Mr. Casey.
Mr. Casey: We have nothing.
President Greenbaum: Old Business.
Status of Mount Olive Child Care & Learning Center Negotiations
President Greenbaum: The first item is the status of the Mount Olive Child Care & Learning Center negotiations. Let the record reflect that Mr. Rattner is stepping down on this issue. Mr. Casey.
Mr. Casey: We have relayed onto the principals of the Child Care Center, the Council decision relative to requesting they go forward with their architectural investigation and we are awaiting the data from them as the result of that.
President Greenbaum: Thank you.
Ms. Labow: Can I have one……not so much on the Mount Olive Child Care and Learning Center, but with the old Library, what measures are being taken to maintain that facility since nobody is in there?
Mr. Casey: We have the heat on in the facility. We have the security system on in the facility, so it’s not been abandoned per se. So, I mean, we basically, you know….we’re checking on it and as I said, we do have the security system on should people decide to break in, hopefully they would trip the alarm.
Ms. Labow: Are the lights on at night, Mr. Casey?
Mr. Casey: I do not know that.
Ms. Labow: For the parking lot. I was just thinking to, I don’t want to say the window’s broken and things like that, perhaps the parking lot is left lit.
President Greenbaum: The Administration will take a look at that.
Mr. Mund: If we’re heating it and it’s empty, why can’t we use it for the temporary storage instead of paying the….for the other storage and this way we can have the materials closer to us for access until we have to vacate the building.
Ms. Labow: It’s a lot of moving, there’s a lot of moving involved.
Mr. Casey: That was one of the issues that we had on the agenda for discussion on Saturday, as a part of a recommendation from Mr. Lynch relative to cost containment, that basically he’s indicating that, from his standpoint, rather than leasing out the storage warehouse that we’re doing now, we should basically avail ourselves to this building under the premise that we doubtful the….any reconstruction would probably be six months down the road. So, he suggested we do that and then, in that instance, we’re also exploring the possibility of using the funds that you’ve already provided for constructing a very simple storage building back on the site that could be used for those records, but Mr. Lynch….it was on the agenda, Mr. Lynch was recommending that we can probably save probably $15,000 to $18,000 if we move in that direction.
President Greenbaum: We’ll pick it up at the Budget Hearing on the 29th. Other items related to the Old Library?
Handicapped Parking @ Library
President Greenbaum: Seeing none, handicap parking at the New Library.
Mr. Casey: We are waiting for the Library to respond back. You’ve heard the comments which have been made relative to the architect, etc. I did send you an information that, in fact, the existing doors, etc. are all in compliance with code, so the issue is, at this point, whether the Library wishes to go better than the code, they have to bring forth some plans and we have not seen any from the Library’s architects yet.
Ms. Labow: The temporary CO is due April 15th and it was brought to my attention that the cut-outs that are there right now currently, are supposed to have a five foot turning radius and they don’t, and it was also brought to my attention if we took what is existing there right now and match it with the architect’s plans for that, they don’t match up and they didn’t do them in compliance. The other thing that was brought to my attention was that the 5% grading, whatever you call it, for that stretch, that even their own inspectors that the Blackstone had brought in said that they did it on an average from the front of the building to the parking lot and it was suggested that it be section by section, because there are some sections that are more than 5% and some that are less, and when we had the dedication ceremony that the Library had, a few people came up to me and one person in particular told me there was no way that’s 5%....try pushing a wheelchair up there. So, those are just some comments for Mr. Casey of what was said to me.
Mr. Casey: As I indicated, the Library meets code, alright. Now, if you remember that the information we had from them was based upon the elevations between point A and point B and he indicated in that that, and we told them, that they may have to stagger that, put in certain plateaus as they reconstruct that. They know that they have to address the issue of the parking spaces, i.e. that…provide the necessary curb cuts and redesign the parking spaces as weather permits. Hopefully now the weather will be breaking, and they may have to address some plateaus in their sidewalk going from that area on up, if they’re going to keep the parking….handicap spaces at the foot of the driveway where they currently are.
Ms. Labow: Okay.
President Greenbaum: Any other comments on this issue? I can’t tell if Mr. Buell has a comment or was just scratching his head.
Mr. Buell: Just scratching. Thank you.
President Greenbaum: Please don’t scratch your head while I’m looking for comments.
Ms. Labow: Hey, since when does government determine when you can scratch your head.
Mr. Buell: Thanks, Colleen.
Cost of Lighting @ Flanders Park
President Greenbaum: The next item for discussion, lighting at Flanders Park, Ms. Labow.
Ms. Labow: Lighting at Flanders Park, the issue has come up in the past. Mr. Casey, you had indicated that we are paying extra money for the transformer that is there and I was wondering if you could give us an explanation on….I had asked you a couple of times for the cost….how much extra are we paying for the larger transformer? Is there actual cost or not a cost? I’ve requested all the bills, I still can’t make heads or tails of it and I was hoping you could explain it to me.
Mr. Casey: If you look at the bills for the park, you’ll notice that, where they have the cost breakdown, there are two items there, one of which Sherry refreshed my memory. There is a charge there which goes to the cost for JCP&L to bring the power to the site and I believe that’s $177 per month and that goes through the end of this year.
Ms. Labow: Right, $177.96.
Mr. Casey: Right, that will drop off. That was the five year cost to have them bring power to site. If you look closely at the bill, you’ll notice that the second line on that is a minimum of a thousand kwh at a fairly high rate, like five cents a kilowatt. I went back over the last year and had them pull the bills today, there was only one month in this past year that we dropped below the 1,000 and that was in the period of March/April last year we were down to 709 and what they did at that point is they charged us at the higher rate. So, what essentially what you have is when you have a transformer set at that level, you guarantee to the company that you will generate a certain amount of revenue, i.e. a certain amount of energy flow off that transformer and if you drop below that, they will basically put a, you know, a surcharge on there to keep, as long as you’re above that limit, and it’s only 1,000 kwh, the fee is first 1,000 kwh is at five cents a kw, and above that it drops down to 5/10 of a cent. So, they base load down and that’s your generator cost and above that you fall under your normal cost. So, that’s the way they cover the costs of those large transformers.
Ms. Labow: So, in essence, when you made the statement that we are paying more money for the thing…for the larger transformer in anticipation of the lights going in at the baseball field, that ended up not being the case.
Mr. Casey: No, no…the issue is, it was designed….it was sized to handle lights at the baseball field and at the basketball court. If, in fact, it was just the basketball court only, it could very well have been a lot smaller transformer. So, it could have been a different cost structure. I don’t know what that other cost structure would be because it never came up.
President Greenbaum: Yes. There was an e-mail that we had gotten from Anne Wisniewski, it was here, who looked into the issue of the cost of the transformers and I believe there were three different size transformers, or four or five different….we got like the second from the bottom, small….it’s not a huge transformer that we got and the cost was insignificant in terms….but I don’t know whether or not the fee structure that we are charged for the electric into that transformer is different than if we had gotten the smallest transformer, but it’s probably diminimous.
Ms. Labow: Yes. I just….Mr. Casey had made a statement at the January 25th, 2005 Council Meeting that we have been paying extra electric bill for those lights, but I don’t see where we have actually paid additional electric bill.
Mr. Casey: I think it’s in the unit pricing, but then again, I would have to, you know, I would have to have an electrical engineer to come out there and price it…different size transformer and then bring that different size transformer and see what that unit pricing is on that one.
Ms. Labow: Okay, thank you.
President Greenbaum: Right, so the bottom line, Colleen, is that there’s no hard data, it’s only Mr. Casey’s belief.
Ms. Labow: Okay.
President Greenbaum: Is that fair, Bob?
Mr. Casey: That’s true.
President Greenbaum: Okay, any other issues?
President Greenbaum: New Business.
President Greenbaum: Legal Matters.
Mr. Semrau: Nothing to report tonight.
President Greenbaum: Council Reports.
Library Board Liaison Report
Ms. Labow: I basically said already what I wanted to say, other than the Library Dedication Ceremony was a huge success and special thanks to Guy Gregg….what’s his official title, Guy Gregg? Assemblyman, I’m sorry, apologies. Assemblyman Guy Gregg was there and a lot of….tons and tons of people were there. It was a beautiful beautiful ceremony and special thanks to Branda’s for donating the food and I thought that was just a… no, he didn’t donate the food, he donated the cake, he made the cake himself, took a picture of the Library, it was just gorgeous. Thank you.
Recreation Liaison Report
Mr. Mund: They met on March 2nd. As it was, we’ve been….received two sets of correspondence from them. One was on the background investigation and the other was on the parks resolution and we covered both of those to date. We also had a discussion about the Old Library being used as a teen center, and there was much discussion on that subject. No resolution, but much discussion. The next meeting is April 6th. That’s it.
President Greenbaum: Yes, you know, I had spoken to Randolph. Randolph had a teen center, I believe they closed it, although I’m not sure. Ms. Labow.
Ms. Labow: I was over at the Fuzz Box over in Long Valley, they had a band night there. Fuzz Box, yes, it used to be the old Police Station, it’s called the Fuzz Box, it’s their teen center. Lisa was there as well, and I went there a few days before to check out the place to see what we needed for the band that was going in there and I spoke to the director there and she had said that when they first opened it up, it was very popular. They had a nice amount of students, maybe fifty, coming there all the time, and now they keep threatening to close it because they’re lucky if there get ten or twelve kids there, and they’re really pushing trying to get the kids to go there and it’s really a nice place, it’s really cool, but the kids just aren’t going there.
Mr. Buell: I think that was…we were together, over at Randolph. I think that’s their situation also.
Board of Health Report – Mr. Guenther is absent.
Planning Board Report
Ms. Labow: Planning Board Report, basically we passed the one ordinance tonight that we had done at the Planning Board the other night, and the other thing that we had our Ordinance Committee meeting on Saturday to discuss the issue of the commercial vehicles being parked on private properties. We haven’t finished that discussion yet. They also met on Friday to discuss the definition of big box, I don’t have the results of that meeting at this time, but I do want to say and ask Mr. Casey if he could possibly look into this, at the….not this past Thursday, the Thursday before, we had a discussion on a four house development that was going in…down in the Hackettstown section, it was called Seneca Highlands, and it….the streets that it borders is Stephen Park Road and Minehill Road. We had a lot of residents come up and they were very distraught and very concerned about the condition of Stephen Park Road, and I don’t know….maybe six or seven residents came up and they all had the same issues, drainage problems, traffic problems, you know, and it’s become a very dangerous situation because of the other development, what’s it called…right down there, Rob, do you remember? Oak Hill?
President Greenbaum: No, Oak Hill is all the way over on….oh, Stephens State Park Road…
Ms. Labow: Yes.
President Greenbaum: All the way in the back.
Ms. Labow: Yes, all the way in the back and it’s….they say it’s dangerous, you can’t even pull out of your driveway, the site distance, everything else. One thing I was really concerned about was when the residents did come up, Mr…..or Chairman Mania told them that they would have to go to the Council, that that was the wrong board to discuss the issues of the road, and I just want to state for the record that our engineer, current new engineer of the Planning Board was not able to address the issues of that road because he’s not from this area and he’s brand new. Our previous engineer would have been able to address that issue right there, on the spot, and tell all of the residents everything that has been done with that road already, and I found that that was a huge injustice to the residents and I would like Mr. Casey, if he could please check with Mr. Buczynski to find out the history of the road, if there are any plans, and so-on and so-forth, so we can get back to those residents and let them know what’s going on with that road.
Board of Adjustment Liaison Report
Mr. Perkins: Thank you Mr. President. The meeting was held last night, the 21st. There were 7 resolutions approved, including the payment of vouchers, two applications, which were small, were approved and one application was re-scheduled for June 20th, that’s Dockrell Beach Yacht Club, that’s the certification of pre-existing non-conforming use. They’re still….my understanding is the party has come to the township today and started provided some of the necessary records to the Zoning Office in anticipation of this all happening, I guess, having all the paperwork in by April something to the Zoning Board to then have them review everything so they’re ready for the hearing on the 20th and that’s it.
Open Space Committee Report – Mr. Guenther is absent.
Legislative Committee Report
Mr. Mund: None.
Pride Committee Liaison Report
Mr. Perkins: Yes, thank you, Mr. President. I’m passing down for everyone to look at….this is the new billboard design, which was….come up, any extra copies if anybody out in the audience would like to see them, help yourself. This is the new billboard, which will be going up. It has the Mount Olive Township Library on it, congratulations to Mount Olive North Jersey Group 3 Field Hockey State Champions is down at the bottom. As we had started the Pride Committee back in 1998, since the billboard belongs to the township, I have asked the Chairperson, Ms. Liz Ouimet, if we could possibly go back to the same procedure that we had followed at the beginning, and that is to send these through the Administration as well as let the Council review just to make sure that there appears to be nothing on there that might be controversial, whether it be through political or other Mr. Perkins(cont’d): nature. So, if there are no objections from anyone on the Council, I think the Pride Committee is doing a great job on maintaining that. Some of them are cute, some people don’t like the cold hands and the warm sleds, but this is the new billboard which should be going up shortly. So, if the Council and the Mayor approves of this, then I will forward that information off to the Pride Committee and they will, with posthaste, have that done.
Ms. Labow: I have a question, Mr. Perkins.
Mr. Perkins: Yes.
Ms. Labow: How did they get that grass that green?
Mr. Perkins: I don’t know, that’s the magic of computer art, let me tell you.
Ms. Labow: It looks great.
Mr. Perkins: You ought to see how nice they make me look when they take pictures, too.
President Greenbaum: I have to tell you, on a serious note Ray, and I don’t mean to….I don’t mean to, in any way, criticize the work done by the Pride Committee, but personally I’ve found those signs to be somewhat silly. Many people who I know have raised issues related to the signs being silly, not that I really care, but if I were to change the sign, I would take out that read, learn, grow and just put, you know, something along the lines that Mount Olive has a new Library. It would be a little bit more professional. That’s just my thought on the subject, although I don’t really care, but if you ask for my opinion, that’s it. Anyone else who has comments on the sign….Ms. Labow.
Ms. Labow: I would just say one thing, because the lettering is so large in the sky there, it does take away from the beauty of the building. I don’t have a problem with the wording, just maybe a little smaller so the building is more emphasized.
Mr. Rattner: I don’t like the colors.
Mr. Perkins: I don’t either, but….Mr. Mayor, do you have any comments or problems with it?
Mayor De La Roche: No.
Mr. Perkins: No. Given that I have just been back with the Pride Committee now, and this….unfortunately got a chance to see….the attachment didn’t come through on the first e-mail they had sent to me. Mr. President and Mr. Mayor, I will attempt, and the rest of my Council associates here, I will attempt to get these to us in a more timely fashion so that we can have some review and comment before they go to final print, and obviously those comments I will take back to the Pride Committee.
Board of Education Liaison Report
Mr. Buell: The only thing really that they’ve been doing is passing the budget, which they’re doing tonight. Everybody’s read the newspaper, our tax rate, based upon their budget for the School Board, is going up 22 cents this year, 11 cents for what they call loss of ratables, 4 cents for the…basically the debt service that we’ve all voted on, and 7 cents, the balance of it, 7 cents for growth. We have 136 more students this year, no additional State aid, and obviously nobody is going to be happy about the taxes going up.
President Greenbaum: We have a presentation by the Board of Education at the next workshop, April 5th.
Mr. Rattner: Obviously, the School Board is facing some of the same issues the town is and I’m not going to pass judgment on their increase which, right now, is less than our increase. However, to claim that much on the loss of ratables would be really great. However, $17 million equates to $376,000, which is about 1.8 tax points. I think it also has to be acknowledged that the township budget, our budget, covered them for $880,000, or thereabouts, last year of refunds. The $1.3 million that our budget had to absorb, included $880,000 to keep the School Board whole, I mean, from a budget standpoint, it’s only practical that’s the State statute, but $17 million worth of ratables equates on $2.22, roughly $376,000. That’s the only comment I had.
President Greenbaum: Thank you. Anyone else with comments?
Lake/Environment Issues Committee
Mr. Rattner: More water, less ice, that’s my report.
Safety Committee Liaison – Mr. Guenther is absent.
Finance Committee Report
Mr. Rattner: Thank you. The Finance Committee has been busy. We have been meeting sometimes at night, sometimes at 8:00 in the morning. What I do want to acknowledge and we’re still assisting, you know, for
information to give to the Council on the budget, where we may not like all the numbers that are coming from the CFO, we do have to acknowledge that when we ask for something, getting the response has been exemplary, I mean, has been very very good. We ask for something, we get exactly what we ask for in a very short period of time, so I do want to thank the Administration for that.
President Greenbaum: Thank you. At this point, I would open the meeting up to the public for discussion on any items that the public wants to speak on. Yes sir.
Bill Testa, Executive Director of the ARC Morris Chapter, formerly known as the Association for Retarded Citizens: Thank you Mr. Greenbaum. We operate an adult training program out of the Flanders School on Main Road in Flanders, opening back in October of 1982. There has been discussion and I’m sure you’ve had some discussion either on the record or off the record about the potential sale of this property. In order to position the ARC Morris Chapter to be in a position to possibly participate in a bidding process, which I know is very tentative at this point, we’ve made application to the Morris County Department of Community Development to, in essence, reserve $100,000 grant to go toward the acquisition of that facility. It requires public discussion at a Mount Olive Public Meeting and the signature of the Mayor. As a result, I wanted to come here this evening and just do this brief presentation. Mrs. Lashway was kind enough to distribute a memorandum concerning the project about two hours ago and I just want to ask your indulgence to possibly ask the Mayor if he would be willing to sign off on the application. It does not, in any way, commit the Township to anything with regard to the organization, it is simply needed to be heard at a public meeting. There is no obligation, this is all very tentative and we will basically pull the grant back if, in fact, there is not a bidding process or if the organization decides not to bid on the building, which it might, in fact do based on the results of the due diligence that we’re conducting out there at the school. I would be happy to entertain any questions.
President Greenbaum: Anyone with any questions? Mr. Rattner.
Mr. Rattner: I’ll just say that, you know, I’ve known ARC has been there and I know the work they’ve done for the last 22 years and I’ll actually say that I’m proud to say that Mount Olive has been hosting it. You know how sometimes it’s difficult to place those things, because of the misconceptions and I think it’s especially appropriate here with what’s going on in Florida with people that are, you know, less fortunate than us and I think it’s a tremendous service. I don’t know which way this body would go for, but I know that I would support anything that they would want to do. I think that when you do your due diligence, you’ll see that the building needs a lot of work, and we understand that, but it’s just you never see too many places around anymore and if they can rehabilitate that building, I think that would serve the community well also, and so, with that, I mean, I’m just one person, but I will say that I would support them in their endeavors in any way that I could personally.
President Greenbaum: Let’s get a straw pull as to those on Council who would support that type of application, those who would be opposed, those who would abstain.
Mr. Mund: I would need more information on what are the other options…what are the feasibilities…
President Greenbaum: Well, we don’t own the building.
Mr. Mund: I know.
President Greenbaum: That’s not the issue, the issue is whether or not we support them to go out and get the grant.
Mr. Mund: But I believe that……
President Greenbaum: The issue is not what happens with the building, the issue is whether or not we support ARC going out and getting the grant. If the School Board decides, or the Township decides, to take different action with respect to that building, it doesn’t change the fact that we support ARC’s ability to go out and get the grant. So, it’s not necessarily tied to what ultimately….that’s the point that you were making. It’s not tied to what happens to the building, it’s simply yes, we support ARC’s effort to go out and get a grant of $100,000, that is the issue.
Mr. Mund: Good luck.
President Greenbaum: Mayor, is that something you’re prepared to sign?
Mayor De La Roche: Yes. I think it was put before me before and I had assumed I had already signed it already, but I will sign it if it hasn’t been signed.
Mr. Testa: I’ll await the end of the meeting, thank you.
Mayor De La Roche: Have you provided me with paperwork on this before?
Mr. Testa: Yes I did.
Mayor De La Roche: I signed it then.
Mr. Testa: Oh, okay. I’ll speak to you and Mr. Casey after the meeting. Thank you very much, appreciate it.
President Greenbaum: Thank you. Anyone else from the public who would like to discuss any issue? Mr. Weiss.
Howie Weiss, Flanders: Good evening. I want to talk for a couple of minutes that I’m a little concerned about, and for those of us that have been involved with the issue of the lights down in Flanders Crossing, especially those of us that were here last week, you saw this room was standing room only. Whether you’re for the lights or against the lights, you heard a lot of emotion, a lot of compassion, you saw a lot of people with a lot of opinions on both sides, and at the end of the night, there was a lot of thought process that needed….now a couple, maybe six months ago, Rob Greenbaum made a decision to step down because of a perceived conflict because he lives close, and I suppose my comments are going to be directed at you, Mr. Perkins, because I’m a little concerned. We haven’t really heard, no one’s asked for an opinion, and anybody at the Council, we’re still at the listening phase, but I don’t know of too many other Council persons that have gone on the record that says you’re for or against it, and in your case, you have gone publicly and said that you’re for the lights…
Mr. Perkins: That’s right.
Mr. Weiss: And I’m concerned with that, Ray, because you weren’t here last week and I understand why and that’s not my point. My point is, I think you as the rest of the Council people here have an obligation to the people of Mount Olive and without hearing the testimony given last week, I think it’s irresponsible to make a public opinion. So, I’m not willing to stand up here and ask you to step down for any potential conflict that might be out there. I do ask you publicly that you give us your commitment, that you’re going to listen to those tapes and you’re going to hear the testimony, pro and con, for that issue before you make any other public opinion. I think we’re owed that from you.
Mr. Perkins: Mr. Weiss, I may listen to the rest of the…to the tapes, I may. I’ve listened to residents, I’ve listened to the children, I’ve listened to yourself, I’ve listened to other people out in the audience, I’ve listened to some of my constituents here, I’ve listened for as many years as I’ve been around. I listened when we played football, our children were down there and we turned on the headlights after the lights went out at the old Chester school just so the kids could finish up a couple fifteen minutes extra worth of practice. So, I’ve been listening for quite some years. I’ll do my best to listen, the mere fact that I was not here for a particular sampling of the population of Mount Olive that was here, I was here when other samples were here and others weren’t and still they sat up here and made comments either in support or against or whatnot. I will do my best, but, yes, I publicly am for the lights. Will there be people that are going to be inconvenienced? Yes, there are, but I think the good of the township, the amount of children that will benefit from having those down there, out weighs the inconvenience. That’s just a personal feeling of mine.
Mr. Weiss: Well, I respect your honest answer that you’re not saying that you’re going to, but I’ve been following this issue since it’s inception, as you have, and not being here and not hearing the testimony last week, I still think it’s irresponsible for you to sit on this issue without hearing what was said last week.
Mr. Perkins: Point well taken. Thank you.
Mr. Weiss: Okay.
President Greenbaum: Thank you very much, Mr. Weiss. Anyone else from the public who wants to….oh, Mayor, you had something to add. I’m sorry, I didn’t see you.
Mayor De La Roche: Yes, I wanted to add to…..I’m sorry. Maybe I’m wrong, but I believe Mr. Weiss came out in support of this and that was long before these people testified. So, maybe you might want to reconsider your position, even though you’re not a public official.
President Greenbaum: No, you don’t need to get up, you don’t need to get up, you don’t need to get up. Thank you, Mayor. Is there anyone else from the public who wants to address this or any issue? Seeing none, I’ll close it to the public.
President Greenbaum: I’ll open it open it up for final comment. Mayor, did you have something?
Mayor De La Roche: Well, I just want to put on the record that the statement made by Mrs. Labow regarding the new engineers at the Planning Board. Apparently her memory is different than mine, because as I recall, the engineer went to great detail talking about the slopes of the roads and the requirements from the State, as well as those that are acceptable discrepancies and variances within engineering and tolerances, he went through it in great detail and I don’t think he had to…necessarily had to know the road particularly in order to know what the requirements are for engineers to overlook these things, or to oversee these things, and I think he gave a very great detailed analysis of the traffic flow, the speed, the grade of the road, the quality of the coverage and a whole bunch of things, and then let me add to that also, that I got a call from the same person subsequent to the meeting and he never raised the issue at all about whether or not people understood it, his only concern was the way he was addressed by a particular attorney, and that attorney has officially apologized a number of times.
President Greenbaum: Thank you, Mayor, is that it?
Mayor De La Roche: Yes.
Ms. Labow: Yes. Mayor De La Roche misunderstood my comment, perhaps other people did as well. What I found, at that meeting at the Planning Board, the residents asked questions beyond what was talked about with that development. All of the road situations for that new development going in were addressed, however they had questions beyond just that section of the road, they had questions about drainage further down the road, they had all types of questions that our previous Planning Board engineer would have been able to answer in great length probably. Thank you.
Mr. Rattner: Yes, just….I saw we got good news today. I got an e-mail from the Business Administrator’s office that he got a call today that the County will be paving Mount Olive Road this spring from Route 46 up to the kennel, I guess past Turkey Brook then, right?
Mrs. Lashway: That’s Flanders Road, it’s Mount Olive up to the top of the hill and then it turns into Flanders.
Mr. Rattner: That’s what I think they meant, because there isn’t a kennel going to the other way. So, that is really good news. Now I’m just going to work on them and tell them that the big problem is the drainage by the Post Office and that’s really where they have to do the work. Number two, we have a meeting next Tuesday night?
President Greenbaum: Yes we do.
Mr. Rattner: Did we have to vote on that or anything else?
Ms. Labow: We did.
Mr. Rattner: We did? Oh, it was in there?
Ms. Labow: Yes, you weren’t…..we did already, no, we did a while ago, you weren’t here that night.
Mr. Rattner: Oh, okay. I just got a call, okay.
Ms. Labow: No, the 29th is something different.
President Greenbaum: No, no, no, no….we have a meeting….we established a budget hearing, if everyone was available. That’s the only meeting that we’re having.
Mr. Rattner: That’s what I mean. Do we have to….that’s what I mean, do we have to take any official action now because it’s a regular public meeting, right, even though we’re not taking any action.
President Greenbaum: We’ve noticed it.
Mrs. Lashway: It’s a budget hearing.
Mr. Rattner: Okay, I just wanted to make sure whatever we had to do.
Mrs. Lashway: It’s not a public meeting with formal action, it’s just a budget hearing.
Mr. Rattner: Yes, okay, I understand, I just wanted to make sure it was properly…..okay.
President Greenbaum: Yes, we noticed it. Is there anything else? Did everyone hear that? Paul, did you hear that? Tuesday night, budget hearing, if anyone else is interested. Is that it, Mr. Rattner?
Mr. Rattner: Yes.
President Greenbaum: I think I’ve said enough for a while. Motion to adjourn.
Mr. Mund: Motion to adjourn.
Mr. Perkins: Second.
All were in favor and the meeting was adjourned at 9:48 pm.
Robert J. Greenbaum, Council President
I, LISA M. LASHWAY, Township Clerk of the Township of Mount Olive do hereby certify that the foregoing Minutes is a true and correct copy of the Minutes approved at a legally convened meeting of the Mount Olive Township Council duly held on April 12, 2005.
Lisa M. Lashway, Township Clerk