Ordinance No. 15-11

Introduced: April 27, 2015
Public Hearing: May 11, 2015
Status: Adopted

An ordinance extending lease agreement between the Vernon Township Board of Education and the Township of Vernon, and sub-lease agreement between the Township of Vernon and the Dog Owners Gathering Society of Vernon Township, Inc., for certain unimproved real property identified on the official tax maps of the Township of Vernon as Block 133, Lot 2.05

WHEREAS, the Vernon Township Board of Education (“BOE”) is the owner of certain unimproved real property located at 669 Route 517, identified further on the official tax maps of the Township of Vernon (“Township”) as Block 133, Lot 2.05 (the “Premises”); and

WHEREAS, pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:20-8.2(a), the BOE previously determined that the Premises is not necessary for school purposes but may, at some future time, be required for said purposes; and

WHEREAS, on November 1, 2009 the BOE and Township entered into a five (5) year lease agreement (“Lease”) for the Premises for the sole purpose of allowing the Township to sublet said Premises to the Dog Owners Gathering Society of Vernon Township, Inc. (“DOGS”); and

WHEREAS, DOGS is a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended, having a postal address of P.O. Box 221, Vernon, New Jersey; and

WHEREAS, on November 1, 2009 the Township and DOGS entered into a five (5) year sublease agreement (“Sublease”) for the Premises for use as a free, open-to-the-public, off-leash dog park operated and maintained by DOGS; and

WHEREAS, consideration for the Lease and Sublease was limited to the mutual promises and obligations contained in said Lease and Sublease, without additional monetary compensation; and

WHEREAS, on or about July 9, 2012 the Lease and Sublease were amended to allow the Township to use a portion of the Premises as a community garden available to Township residents on a first come, first served basis; and

WHEREAS, the Lease and Sublease, as amended, expired on October 31, 2014; and

WHEREAS, the parties desire to extend the terms of the Lease and Sublease, as amended, for an additional five (5) year period; and

WHEREAS, there is an ongoing and continuous need for a dog park within the Township due to the increased number of dogs and dog owners residing within the Township; and

WHEREAS, the Township Council has determined that having a free, open-to-the-public, off-leash dog park will continue to benefit the residents of Vernon in that dog parks, in general, promote responsible pet ownership, give dogs a place to exercise safely thereby reducing barking and other problem behaviors, provide seniors and disabled owners with an accessible place to exercise their companions, and provide an area for community-building and socializing; and

WHEREAS, there is also an ongoing and continuous need for a public facility where gardeners may share and exchange ideas while producing healthy food for friends and family; and

WHEREAS, the Township Council has determined that having a community garden will continue to benefit the residents of Vernon in that it will provide a suitable gardening area to residents who do not have any at home, provide an area capable of growing healthy produce which can combat adult obesity and chronic illnesses, allow residents to connect with nature, create intergenerational connections between seniors and youths, foster community spirit and civic mindedness, and reduce costs otherwise spent on groceries; and

WHEREAS, the Local Lands and Buildings Law, N.J.S.A. 40A:12-14(c) allows a municipality to lease property to a nonprofit corporation for a public purpose.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED by the Council of the Township of Vernon, County of Sussex, and State of New Jersey, as follows:

  1. The Township is hereby authorized to extend the term of its November 1, 2009 Lease, as amended, with the Vernon Township Board of Education for an additional five (5) year term subject to the remaining terms and conditions set forth in the Lease, as amended, which shall remain in full force and effect.
  2. The Mayor is hereby authorized to execute the Amendment to Lease with the Vernon Township Board of Education, a copy of which is attached hereto as Attachment A.
  3. The Township is hereby authorized to extend the term of its November 1, 2009 Sublease, as amended, with the Dog Owners Gathering Society of Vernon Township, Inc. for an additional five (5) year term subject to the remaining terms and conditions set forth in the Sublease, as amended, which shall remain in full force and effect.
  4. The Mayor is hereby authorized to execute the Amendment to Sublease with the Dog Owners Gathering Society of Vernon Township, Inc., a copy of which is attached hereto as Attachment B.
  5. Consideration for the extended terms shall be limited to the continuation of the mutual promises and obligations contained in the Lease and Sublease, as amended, without monetary compensation; and
  6. The Township shall not be responsible for the operation and/or maintenance of the dog park or any costs associated therewith during the extended terms of the Lease and Sublease.
  7. The Mayor and Business Administrator are hereby designated as the Township Officials responsible for the supervision of the Lease and Sublease, as amended.
  8. Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:12-14(c), The Dog Owners Gathering Society of Vernon Township, Inc. shall submit an annual report to the Mayor or Business Administrator which describes or contains the following:
    1. the use to which the Premises was put during each year;
    2. the activities performed in furtherance of the public purpose for which the Sublease was granted;
    3. the approximate value or cost, if any, of such activities in furtherance of the such purpose; and
    4. an affirmation of the continued tax-exempt status of the nonprofit corporation or association pursuant to both State and federal law.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT FURTHER ORDAINED that this Ordinance shall take effect upon final adoption and publication pursuant to law.

Attachment A
AMENDMENT TO LEASE

This Amendment to the Lease (the “Amendment”) is made as of this _____ day of _______, 2015. BETWEEN VERNON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF EDUCATION, having a postal address of P.O. Box 99, Route 515, Vernon, New Jersey 07462 (the “Landlord”); AND TOWNSHIP OF VERNON, NEW JERSEY, a municipal corporation of the State of New Jersey, with offices located at 21 Church Street, Vernon, New Jersey 07462 (the “Tenant”).

RECITALS

WHEREAS, by Lease dated November 1, 2009, as amended by the July 9, 2012 amendment (collectively the “Lease”) the Landlord leased to Tenant certain unimproved property consisting of a portion of Lot 2.05, Block 133, located at the intersection of Dorfred Terrace and Route 517 (the “Premises”) for the sole and express purposes of having the Tenant (1) sublet a portion of the Premises to Dog Owners Gathering Society of Vernon Township (the “Subtenant”) and (2) develop a portion of the Premises into a public garden for use by the residents of Vernon Township; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 2.1, the Lease expired on October 31, 2014; and

WHEREAS, the parties wish to amend the Lease to extend the term thereof;

NOW, THEREFORE, the parties hereby agree that in consideration of these presents and with the concurrence of the Subtenant the Lease is hereby amended as follows:

  1. Section 2.1 of the Lease is revised to read as follows:
    Subject to Section 2.2, below, the term of this Lease shall be five (5) years commencing on November 1, 2014 and ending on October 31, 2019 unless terminated earlier in the manner set forth in this Lease or the Sublease attached hereto as Exhibit A. Thereafter, this Lease may be renewed for additional successive five (5) year terms upon the mutual written consent of the Landlord and the Tenant upon the expiration of each successive five (5) year term, subject to earlier termination in the manner set forth in this Lease or Exhibit A.
  2. Concurrent with this Amendment, the Tenant shall enter into an amendment of the Sublease with the Subtenant in the form attached hereto as Appendix 1, extending the term of the Sublease.
  3. The parties acknowledge that the Landlord will be using a significant portion of the remainder of Lot 2.05, Block 133 for the development and installation of a solar renewable energy project intended to provide low cost energy to the Lounsberry Hollow and Rolling Hills schools. The renewable energy project is currently in the design and permitting phase but the Landlord does not anticipate that it will interfere with the Tenant’s use of the Premises.
  4. If there is a conflict between this Amendment and any provisions of the Lease, this Amendment shall govern.
  5. Except as amended hereby the Lease remains in full force and effect.
  6. This Amendment may be executed in one or more counterparts, which shall constitute on and the same instrument.
  7. Except as amended hereby all capitalized terms used herein shall have the same meaning ascribed to them in the Lease.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties have caused these presents to be signed by their authorized representatives as of the date first written above.

APPENDIX 1 AMENDMENT TO SUBLEASE
Attachment B
AMENDMENT TO SUBLEASE

This Amendment to Sublease (“Amendment”) is made as of this ______, day of ______ 2015, BETWEEN TOWNSHIP OF VERNON, NEW JERSEY, a municipal corporation of the State of New Jersey, with offices located at 21 Church Street, Vernon, New Jersey 07462 (the “Tenant”); AND DOG OWNERS GATHERING SOCIETY OF VERNON TOWNSHIP, INC. (D.O.G.S. OF VERNON, a tax-exempt organization pursuant to Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended, whose postal address is P.O. Box 221, Vernon, New Jersey 07462 (the “Subtenant”).

RECITALS

WHEREAS, by Sublease dated November 1, 2009, as amended by the July 9, 2012 amendment (collectively the “Sublease”) the Tenant leased to Subtenant certain unimproved property consisting of a portion of Lot 2.05, Block 133, located at the intersection of Dorfred Terrace and Route 517 (the “Premises”) for the sole and express purposes of having the Subtenant use the area for a public off-leash dog park to be operated and maintained by the Subtenant; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 3, the Sublease expired on October 31, 2014; and

WHEREAS, the parties wish to amend the Sublease to extend the term thereof;

NOW, THEREFORE, the parties hereby agree that in consideration of these presents that the Sublease is hereby amended as follows:

  1. Section 3 of the Sublease is revised to read as follows:
    Subject to Section 2, above, the term of this Sublease shall be five (5) years commencing on November 1, 2014 and ending on October 31, 2019 unless terminated earlier in the manner set forth in this Lease or the Sublease. The term of this Sublease shall run concurrently with, and shall be coterminous with, the term of the Lease and in the event of the expiration or earlier termination of the Lease and regardless of whether or not the early termination is beyond the Tenant’s control, fault or status, then this Sublease shall likewise terminate simultaneously with such expiration or earlier termination of the Lease. The Subtenant shall have no right or cause of action against the Landlord or the Tenant by reason of such expiration or earlier termination of the of the Lease and Sublease.
  2. The parties acknowledge that the Landlord will be using a significant portion of the remainder of Lot 2.05, Block 133 for the development and installation of a solar renewable energy project intended to provide low cost energy to the Lounsberry Hollow and Rolling Hills schools. The renewable energy project is currently in the design and permitting phase but the Landlord does not anticipate that it will interfere with the Subtenant’s use of the Premises.
  3. If there is a conflict between this Amendment and any provisions of the Sublease, this Amendment shall govern.
  4. Except as amended hereby the sublease remains in full force and effect.
  5. This Amendment may be executed in one or more counterparts, which shall constitute on and the same instrument.
  6. Except as amended hereby all capitalized terms used herein shall have the same meaning ascribed to them in the Sublease.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties have caused these presents to be signed by their authorized representatives as of the date first written above.