Minutes: April 5, 2010
Call Meeting to Order
Dennis Miranda called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.
Statement of Compliance
Pursuant to the Open Public Meetings Act, Chapter 231, P.L. 1975 adequate notice as defined in Section 4D of Chapter 231, P.L. 1975 has been transmitted from the Vernon Municipal Center to the New Jersey Herald on February 5, 2010, and published on February 10, 2010. Notice is posted on the bulletin board and filed with the office of the Township Clerk.
|Dennis Miranda, Chair||P|
Jessica Paladini, Recording Secretary
Ariana Miranda, Student Member
Meghan Haidet, The Land Conservancy
Michelle Talmadge, Wallkill River Refuge
Pledge of Allegiance
Open Meeting to the Public
Dennis Miranda opened the meeting to the public. Seeing no one come forward, the meeting was closed to the public.
Closed Meeting to the Public
Open Space Discussion
Dennis Miranda announced that the state would not be giving Vernon Township the $1.55 million it had amassed for open space funds because the township did not use the money when it was available and there is no longer a dedicated open space fund.
The township may be able to get about $250,000 from the state if it expends the entire approximately $800,000 it currently has in the open space fund. Dennis Miranda said all that Green Acres money will go back into the bank, away from Vernon, and that’s not a good thing. He suggested the township restore the open space tax.
Natural Resource Inventory
Dennis said the township council did not approve a resolution to authorize the environmental commission and historical society to apply for grants to develop a new natural resource inventory. He had enlisted the volunteer work of experts who would have contributed to the NRI without cost to the township. Their hours of labor could have been used as a match for the grant, but the township will lose out on this service now.
Wallkill River National Wildlife Refuge
Michelle Talmadge, Biological Science Technician, did a slide presentation of the refuge, its habitats, wildlife, grasslands, upland forests, and wetlands, etc. One can find information about the refuge here.
After the presentation, on a motion by Allison Petryk and seconded by Daniel Boltz, the Environmental Commission went into executive session at 8:35 p.m.
Allison Petryk moved to go out of executive session and back into public session. Michael Furrey seconded the motion. All were in favor; none opposed.
The Environmental Commission went back into pubic session at 9:25 p.m.
Open Space Acquisitions
Dan Boltz moved to pursue the purchase of the Vernon Partners and Stanhill parcels and do appraisals for both. Dennis Miranda seconded the motion. Meghan Haidet will write the resolution.
Roll call vote: Daniel Boltz, yes; Michael Furrey, no; Carol Kadish, yes; Allison Petryk, yes; Dennis Miranda, yes.
The Land Conservancy Open Space Plan
Dennis Miranda read from the Open Space Plan by The Land Conservancy. All members commended the plan. It will be presented to the Land Use Board on April 14. Dennis will also meet with the recreation board within the next 60 days to discuss the open space and recreation plan.
Dan Boltz moved to approve the minutes of the March 15 Environmental Commission meeting. Carol Kadish seconded the motion. Michael Furrey was not present at the march 15 meeting and therefore could not vote on the minutes.
Roll call vote: Daniel Boltz, yes; Michael Furrey, abstain; Carol Kadish, yes; Allison Petryk, yes; Dennis Miranda, yes.
Dennis Miranda discussed the current Master Plan update and feels it is flawed because there are statements in it that are not correct. He also addressed the township’s petition for plan conformance and said there are 13 map changes, some of which are baseless. He will address these issues with the environmental commission and the Land Use Board at a future date.
Applications for Review
There were no applications for review.
There was no correspondence.
Environmental Commission Minutes
The commission reviewed the minutes of the March 1, 2010 meeting. David Gornstein moved to accept the minutes. Allison Petryk seconded the motion.
Roll call vote: Daniel Boltz, yes; David Gornstein, yes; Jessica Beutel, yes; Carol Kadish, yes; Allison Petryk, yes; Dennis Miranda, yes.
Land Use Board Liaison Report
David Gornstein was absent, and there was no report.
There being no further business, Michael Furrey moved to adjourn the meeting. Dan Boltz seconded the motion.
The commission meeting adjourned at 9:45 p.m.
Jessica S. Paladini, Recording Secretary
Minutes approved: April 19, 2010