Minutes: February 19, 2009

Mr. Bates called the meeting to order at 7:26 p.m.

Statement of Compliance

Pursuant to the Open Public Meetings Act, Chapter 231, P.L. 1975 adequate notice as defined in Section 3D of Chapter 231, P.L. 1975 had been forwarded to the New Jersey Herald on January 26, 2009 and published on January 28, 2009. Notice is also posted on the bulletin board and filed with the office of the Township Clerk.

Roll Call of Members

Charles BatesP
Christopher HankeP
Kevin CantaldiP
Sharon CheadleNP
Richard WetzelP
Rev. Robert SolonP
Andrew BorisukNP


Rev. Solon made a motion to approve the minutes of the Reorganization Meeting of January 15, 2009. Mr. Hanke seconded the motion. All were in favor.

Mr. Hanke made a motion to approve the minutes of the Regular Meeting of January 15, 2009, as amended. Mr. Wetzel seconded the motion. All were in favor.


Mr. Bates invited all members to attend the next Town Council (“TC”) meeting to be held on February 26, 2009 at 7:00 p.m. to provide information and support for a conceptual historic designation of the Brown Farm.

Meeting Opened to the Public

Closed Meeting to the Public

Old Business

Plan Endorsement Committee

Mr. Bates said he would call Mayor Carew to suggest that a HPC member sit on this committee.

Prices Switch School Memorialization

No discussion.

Denton-Wallace (Labar House) Sign

Mr. Cantaldi passed around the proof of the sign for the members’ approval. The spelling is correct. After the sign company has been notified that the proof has been approved, the sign will be shipped within a week or two. Mr. Cantaldi will notify the sign company that the proof has been approved tomorrow.

Mr. Bates said that he would like to have a ceremony after the sign has been installed and invite a newspaper reporter so that an article can be written along with a picture published in the local paper for advertising purposes to show the town’s preservation commitment. Rev. Solon advised that he is friends with Chris Wyman who works with AIM newspapers and he will contact him when the ceremony has been scheduled.

Mr. Bates will provide Mrs. LaBar with a copy of the proof of the sign.

Mr. Bates thanked Kevin for all of his work on procuring the sign.

Owner’s Rights and Benefits of Preservation

Mr. Hanke advised that he had spoken with Donna Wilson. She told him that presently there is a bill on the floor for the State to give people tax credits for historic designated properties. Many towns give credits on their own. Ms. Wilson suggested to Mr. Hanke that he look at the Preservation NJ website for more information. Mr. Hanke agreed to contact Sharon Cheadle regarding her prior research on this subject and he will do further internet research.

Mr. Bates said that he is most interested in publishing in a brochure, the local rights and benefits of historic designation for Vernon Township homeowners. Mr. Bates will try to gather information from the ordinance.

High Breeze Farm

Tabled to next meeting.

Economic Development Advisory Committee

Mr. Wetzel advised that the main topic for the committee currently is the Town Center. The new chair will be Jim Schriner. The committee will meet twice per month from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. which will be opened to the public. They are working on a response plan for someone who may want to open a business in town. Carol Williams will be the initial contact for people inquiring about businesses in Vernon. The committee is discussing developing a website which would include highlighting one business per week or so. They are trying to work out communication between the various economic groups in town. This interconnects with the HPC on the subject of tourism and having historic sites visited by visitors.

Status of Historical Preservation of Cemeteries in Vernon Township

Mr. Hanke suggested that he, Kevin and Sharon get together in April, before the trees are in full bloom, and start mapping the cemeteries with GPS.

Application for Sea Captain’s House

Mr. Bates advised that he would like the HPC to submit an application for this property. Mr. Hanke said that he already has all of the information and can help with re-submitting this application. Cynthia will prepare the application template for HPC use.

New Applications


New Business

Report on Stewart House

Mr. Hanke gave a report on his review from the book the HPC received of the archeological and architectural mitigation done around the foundation of the property, directly next to the Stewart House. The Stewart house, at one time, was a tavern. Mr. Hanke said they found many artifacts including medicine bottles, cups, plates, buckles, brass, ivory, and bone buttons, utensils, etc. dating from approximately 1775. This book contains a good history of the site if this property was to ever be memorialized. Mr. Hanke would like to find out who to contact at Mountain Creek with regard to memorializing the structure.

Goals for 2009

Mr. Hanke

Memorialization of Stewart House, Sea Captain’s House, and Cider Mill House. A work session to go through the HPC files.

Rev. Solon

Highlight a historic site every month on the website. He would like to see a more robust presence of the HPC on the town’s website.

Mr. Cantaldi

Has Mr. Blessing’s archive of HPC photos which should be made into a reference book.

Mr. Bates

Suggested that the HPC have a work session to prepare this reference book.

Mr. Wetzel

Would like to continue working with the Vernon Historical Society as the HPC has been doing.

Discussion on a Possible Designation on a Farming District

Mr. Bates asked if the HPC should go forward with developing a historic farming district from Butternut Estates to High Breeze Farm. Mr. Hanke said that it could be considered a “historic district” and might include the area right from above Breakneck Road up to the New York border. Mr. Hanke said that the current ordinance requires the HPC to designate historic districts. Mr. Bates will invite Mr. Rickey to speak to the HPC with regard to his thoughts on this idea hopefully at the March meeting.


Rev. Solon made a motion to adjourn the HPC Regular Meeting at 9:04 p.m. Mr. Cantaldi seconded the motion. All were in favor.

Transcribed by Cynthia Davis on February 22, 2009.