All meeting minutes posted on the township website are unofficial minutes. Official copies of minutes may be obtained from the township clerk.

Minutes: February 11, 2013

The Regular Meeting of the Township Council of the Township of Vernon was convened at 6:33 p.m. on February 11, 2013, in the Vernon Township Municipal Building, 21 Church Street, Vernon, New Jersey, with Council President Patrick Rizzuto presiding.

Statement of Compliance

Adequate notice of this meeting had been provided to the public and the press on January 11, 2013, and was posted on the bulletin board in the municipal building in accordance with the Open Public Meetings Act, N.J.S.A. 10:4-6.

Roll Call of Members

Present were Council Members Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Brian Lynch, Dick Wetzel, and Council President Patrick Rizzuto. Also present were Mayor Vic Marotta, Business Administrator Jerry Giaimis, and Township Attorney Kevin Kelly.

Executive Session

WHEREAS, the Open Public Meetings Act, N.J.S.A. 10:4-6 permits the exclusion of the public in certain circumstances; and

WHEREAS, this public body is of the opinion that such circumstances presently exist;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Township Council of the Township of Vernon as follows:

1. The public shall be excluded from discussion of and action upon the hereinafter specified subject matters.

2. The general nature of the subject matters to be discussed are:

Litigation: Kosch vs. Reid
Lake Conway Dam vs. NJDEP

3. This resolution shall take effect immediately.

Moved: Brian Lynch
Second: Dick Wetzel

A roll call vote was taken:
Ayes: Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Brian Lynch, Dick Wetzel, Patrick Rizzuto
Nays: None
Time: 6:36 p.m.

Return to Open Session

Moved: Eddie Dunn
Second: Daniel Kadish

Ayes: Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Brian Lynch, Dick Wetzel, Patrick Rizzuto
Nays: None
Time: 7:32 p.m.

Salute to the Flag

Council President Rizzuto led the assemblage in the salute to the flag.

Special Presentation

Council President Rizzuto noted that Valentine’s Day was in a few days and presented Clerk Nelson with flowers and a card from the Mayor and Council. Council Member Wetzel presented each press member with a rose on behalf of the Council. Mr. Wetzel also gave Ms. Nelson a rose to give to Deputy Clerk Bates.

Public Comments

Council President Rizzuto asked for a motion to open the meeting to public comments at this time.
Moved: Brian Lynch
Second: Eddie Dunn
All were in favor.

Gary Martinsen—noted that he was glad for the Gran Fondo bicycle event as per Resolution #13-42. He felt the budget work session should have been taped.

Lynn Van Gorder—handed each Council member a 10-page decision by the Civil Service Commission for their review relative to the 2 former Fire Prevention officials. She then gave her opinion on the matter.

Robert Oliver—noted that the previous Council had researched getting out of the Civil Service system, and determined that it would be onerous.

Closed to Public Comments

No one else wished to speak at this time, and Council President Rizzuto asked for a motion to close the public portion of the meeting.

Moved: Brian Lynch
Second: Dick Wetzel
All were in favor.

Presentation—MUA

Municipal Utilities Authority Chair, Vincent Zinno, gave their first Annual Report, noting the following:

  • The timeline of events for the MUA, including prior to their being operational. He noted that the MUA consists of five (5) regular members and two (2) alternate members.
  • The professionals chosen—attorney, auditor, engineer, secretary, etc.
  • How the rates were determined, and amendments to those rates, noting that they had reached out to the Sussex County MUA for information.
  • They are looking into installment payments for businesses.
  • Mountain Creek EDU’s were noted and adjustments were subsequently made.
  • The operational concerns relative to three pump stations, as per engineering reports.
  • Clarification of bedroom units for the condos due to a conflict between the Assessor records and those of the condo associations which are still being resolved. Adjustments have been/will be made as a result.
  • Late notices have gone out, and extensions were granted to offset billing errors made.
  • They have passed a resolution which consents to the proposed water quality management amendment entitled Sussex County Water Quality Management Plan.

Council Member Kadish asked Mr. Zinno when the written report would be available. Mr. Zinno advised that it would be available by the end of the following week.

Council Member Wetzel noted that Vernon has the second lowest sewage rates in the County (Newton has the lowest).

Council President Rizzuto asked Mr. Zinno to address the frequent suggestion by residents about spreading the usage fees across the entire Township. Mr. Zinno noted that State statutes direct that the usage fees are for users only.

Council Member Lynch applauded the MUA’s efforts to keep the EDU’s so low, noting that it shows the residents that we care to keep the taxes lower.

Council Member Wetzel addressed the taxpayer watchdogs, advising that the flowers and card were paid for by the Mayor, Administrator, and Council members individually.

Council President Rizzuto and Council Member Dunn had more questions for Mr. Zinno, who noted that the MUA is considering making a new calculation of EDU’s by rounding by fractions, and making it retroactive for 2012. He advised that the businesses were on-line with the system. He further advised that the Sussex County MUA has raised their rates 11% for the last two years. After further questions relative to installation fees, Mr. Zinno reported that the MUA is responsible for providing pipe to the curb, with the owners responsible for anything on their properties.

Mayor’s Report

Mayor Marotta advised that he would be away from February 19 to March 4, and that Mr. Giaimis would be the Acting Mayor in his absence.

Approval of Minutes

December 10, 2012 Executive Session Minutes

Moved: Daniel Kadish
Second: Eddie Dunn

A roll call vote was taken:
Ayes: Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Dick Wetzel, Patrick Rizzuto
Nays: None
Abstain: Brian Lynch
Executive Session Minutes of 12/10/12 were approved.

December 10, 2012 Regular Meeting Minutes

Moved: Daniel Kadish
Second: Eddie Dunn

A roll call vote was taken:
Ayes: Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Dick Wetzel, Patrick Rizzuto
Nays: None
Abstain: Brian Lynch
Regular Minutes of 12/10/12 were approved.

December 17, 2012 Regular Meeting Minutes

Moved: Brian Lynch
Second: Daniel Kadish

A roll call vote was taken:
Ayes: Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Brian Lynch, Dick Wetzel, Patrick Rizzuto
Nays: None
Abstain: None
Minutes of 12/17/12 were approved.

February 4, 2013 Work Session Minutes

Council Member Dunn made a motion to table these minutes to 2/25/13
Moved: Eddie Dunn
Second: Brian Lynch

A roll call vote was taken:
Ayes: Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Patrick Rizzuto, Dick Wetzel, Brian Lynch
Nays: None
Abstain: None
Minutes of 2/4/13 were tabled to 2/25/13.

Resolution for Discussion

#13-36 Waiver to Allow AT&T Cell Tower Repairs and Replacements

Council discussed this resolution with the AT&T representatives in attendance: Debra Cuccia, Evan Joseph, and Harold Weezer. Ms. Cuccia handed out material, and explained the scope of the work being requested for permits. Mayor Marotta noted that the Township ordinance prevents the zoning official from approving permits without Council waiving the requirements of the ordinance. Council Member Kadish noted the issue of unpaid taxes on the property, and asked if the lease payments made by the owner (Metairie) to AT&T could be paid to the Township instead of Metairie. Ms. Cuccia advised that all hazardous materials/conditions had been removed, and that AT&T was requesting to replace those materials. Ms. Cuccia explained that the original approvals included three (3) more antenna units than originally installed and that they would like to install them at this time, noting that national upgrades have determined that they are necessary. Council Member Lynch felt that AT&T was being held up, despite the fact that they have no responsibility for the unpaid taxes. Mayor Marotta asked about 9-1-1 service, wondering if it was included. They advised that it was. Council Member Kadish asked about other locations being available. The consensus was that there were no other available locations.

Motion was made to approve Resolution #13-36
Moved: Brian Lynch
Second: Patrick Rizzuto

Council President Rizzuto felt that if the request was not approved, the residents could be impacted with 9-1-1 calls. Council Member Lynch asked the Mayor to inform the Zoning Officer that the requirements were being waived, advising that he did not want any safety issues to be impacted by not having 9-1-1 service.

Council President Rizzuto asked if there was a way to force Metairie to pay their taxes. Mr. Kelly advised that State statutes allow for application for receivership of the fees, but noted that it was not an easy process (though a viable one).

A roll call vote was taken:
Ayes: Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Brian Lynch, Patrick Rizzuto
Nays: Dick Wetzel
Resolution #13-36 was approved.

Resolution #13-36: Authorizing Waiver of Vernon Township Code §330-155 for the Purpose of Repair and Replacement of AT&T Cell Tower Units on Block 231.01 Lot 1 Legends Resort

WHEREAS, Vernon Township Code §330-155 states: “as a condition of any approval or permit which is required pursuant to this article, no taxes or assessments for local improvements shall be due or delinquent on the property for which any application is made pursuant to this article”; and

WHEREAS, AT&T has made application to the Township for repairs and replacement of AT&T units on the roof of a building at Block 231.01 Lot 1, Legends Resort; and

WHEREAS, the Township has denied approval of this application pursuant to Township Code §330-155, delinquency of payment of taxes; and

WHEREAS, the property owner has requested a waiver of the Township Ordinance to proceed with this application for the necessary safety repairs and replacement.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, by the Council of the Township of Vernon, waiver of Township Code §330-155 is hereby approved for the application by AT&T for the repair and replacements of cell tower units on property located at Block 231.01 Lot 1.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a copy of this resolution be forwarded to the Zoning and Building Departments for their records.

This Resolution will take effect immediately according to law.

Council President Rizzuto asked Mr. Kelly what the process would be to gain the fees from AT&T. Mr. Kelly advised that the Township would need to ask to be named receiver of the AT&T fees paid by Metairie. Mayor Marotta advised that the taxes on this property are paid by tax sale holders, and therefore we are not losing revenue. A further discussion followed on this issue.

Resolutions #13-37 through #13-46

Council President Rizzuto gave a brief explanation of all resolutions, and noted that #12-42 for the Gran Fondo bicycle run could be a problem with the Vernon Day 5K and activities at Maple Grange. Mayor Marotta read an email he had received, noting that the event planner was willing to alter their route to avoid a conflict, and that they would work with Ms. Wiedbrauk to resolve the issue.

Council Member Kadish asked to separate out #13-46.

Council Member Dunn asked if police presence was required for the Gran Fondo race. The Mayor noted that the event planners would be charged accordingly if any officers were needed.

The Council President asked for a motion to approve Resolutions #13-37 through 13-45.
Moved: Brian Lynch
Second: Daniel Kadish

A roll call vote was taken:
Ayes: Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Brian Lynch, Dick Wetzel, Patrick Rizzuto
Nays: None
Resolutions #13-37 through 13-45 were approved.

Council Member Dunn asked Mayor Marotta about Resolution #13-45. The Mayor advised that the Speaker of the Assembly was the sponsor. Council President Rizzuto noted the names of the other sponsors.

Resolution #13-37: Authorizing the Award of Contract for Professional Services

WHEREAS, there is a need for Professional Services to the Township of Vernon for updating the tax and zoning maps; and

WHEREAS, N.J.S.A. 40A:11-5 specifically exempts professional services from provisions of public bidding as provided in the Local Public Contracts Law; and

WHEREAS, said specified professional services are to be rendered or performed by a person or persons authorized by law to practice a recognized profession, and whose practice is regulated by law within the meaning of N.J.S.A. 40A:11-1 et seq., as amended; and

WHEREAS, the performance of said professional services requires knowledge of an advanced field of learning acquired by a prolonged formal course of specialized training and study as distinguished from general academic instruction or apprenticeship and training; and

WHEREAS, the Township of Vernon is desirous to enter into an agreement with this professional as a non-fair and open contract pursuant to the provisions of the Local Public Contracts Law, N.J.S.A. 40A:11-1 et seq., as amended; and

WHEREAS, the Chief Finance Officer has certified in writing that the value of the contract is available for this purpose subject to the adoption of the 2013 Municipal Budget; and

WHEREAS, the Local Public Contracts Law N.J.S.A. 40A:11-1 et seq., as amended, requires that this Resolution be publicly advertised.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Council of the Township of Vernon that they hereby authorize and approve the award of contract of a Professional Service Contract pursuant to the provisions of the Local Public Contracts Law, N.J.S.A. 40A:20-1 et seq. to provide Services in accordance with the attached Contract for Professional Services pursuant to a non-fair and open contract to the following:

1. VS Land Data, Inc.—to update the tax and zoning maps; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the award of contract shall be contingent upon the completion and receipt of the following:

  1. A fully-executed professional services agreement detailing the scope of services, established fees for said professional services, mandatory Equal Opportunity Language and Affirmative Action Certificate; and
  2. Receipt of all statutorily mandated “pay to play” political contribution forms pursuant to N.J.S.A. 19:44A-20.4 et seq.; and
  3. New Jersey Business Registration Certificate; and
  4. Upon the aforementioned professional being a member in good standing in their respective profession.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Mayor and Municipal Clerk are hereby authorized and directed to execute, seal and deliver the attached Contracts for Professional Services on behalf of and in the name of the Township of Vernon and that the Municipal Clerk shall publish the award of contract as required by law with ten (10) days of passage of this Resolution.

Resolution #13-38: Authorizing the Award of a Contract Between the Township of Vernon and Spatial Data Logic for Geologic Software Support and Upgrades in the Amount of $6,500.00

WHEREAS, there exists a need for Geologic Software Support for the Township of Vernon in the Planning & Zoning Department, Building Department, Administrative Offices, and the Assessor’s Office; and

WHEREAS, the Township had previously invested in Geologic Software from Spatial Data Logic, and this software is currently being used in the above-referenced departments for permitting, licensing, electronic maintenance of all inspection reports and the transmission of monthly activity reports to the Department of Community Affairs; and

WHEREAS, customer support and upgrades are needed for this software to operate efficiently and Spatial Data Logic is the only provider of such support and upgrades; and

WHEREAS, the cost for this service during 2013 is $6,500; and

WHEREAS, the Chief Financial Officer of the Township of Vernon has determined and certified that funds for this agreement are subject to the adoption of the 2013 Municipal Budget.

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

  1. The Township of Vernon is authorized to engage Spatial Data Logic for the purpose of customer support and upgrades for its Geologic Software.
  2. The Mayor and Township Clerk are hereby authorized and directed to execute a Professional Services Contract with Spatial Data Logic, Somerset, NJ, for calendar year 2013.

Resolution #13-39: Authorizing the Cancellation of Capital Appropriation Balances

WHEREAS, certain General Capital Improvement appropriation balances remain dedicated to projects now completed; and

WHEREAS, it is necessary to formally cancel said balances so that the unexpended balances may be returned to each respective Capital Improvement Fund or credited to Capital Fund Balance, and unused debt authorizations may be canceled.

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the Council of the Township of Vernon, that the following unexpended and dedicated balances of the General Capital Appropriations be cancelled:

ORDDATEPROJECTAMOUNT CANCELLED
05-073-28-05Rehab. Low & Mod. Housing$23,200.00
05-145-09-05Various Improvements55.72
06-196-26-06Various Improvements599.80
08-105-29-08Various Improvements5,277.43
08-178-28-08Various Improvements10,012.65
09-158-13-09Repair & Maintenance of Roads1,027.15
09-168-13-09Drainage Improvements380.56
  TOTAL$40,553.31

Resolution #13-40: To Award a Contract to Konica Minolta Business Solutions Using the Western State Contracting Alliance (WSCA) Contract #1715

WHEREAS, the Township of Vernon has a need to purchase and/or lease copiers; and

WHEREAS, N.J.S.A. 52:34-6.2 et seq., allows local contracting units to utilize national cooperative contracts as a method of procurement when cost effective; and

WHEREAS, The Western State Contracting Alliance is a national cooperative which awarded contract #1715-For Multifunction Copiers and Related Software to Konica Minolta Business Solutions; and

WHEREAS, the Qualified Purchasing Agent has determined that using the WSCA contract to purchase and/or lease copiers is more cost effective than utilizing the state (GSA) contract; and

WHEREAS, the Qualified Purchasing Agent has also determined that WSCA’s contract #1715 was awarded in a fair and open process.

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Township Council award a contract in the amount of $26,004.74 to Konica Minolta Business Solutions, 500 Dayhill Road, Windsor CT, 06095 under WSCA contract #1715.

Resolution #13-41: Release of Performance Guarantee for the Day Lodge at Mountain Creek

WHEREAS, Mountain Creek did post an Irrevocable Standby Letter of Credit from M and T Bank, #SB1352470001 dated March 12, 2012, in the amount of $36,000.00; and

WHEREAS, the Day Lodge at Mountain Creek project has been completed; and

WHEREAS, Mountain Creek has requested the release of the $36,000.00 performance guarantee; and

WHEREAS, the Township Engineer, Cory Stoner, has no objection to the Township releasing the Irrevocable Standby Letter of Credit.

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Township Council that the Municipal Clerk shall return the M and T Bank Irrevocable Standby Letter of Credit for $36,000.00.

Resolution #13-42: NJ Highlands Gran Fondo on June 9, 2013

WHEREAS, the Gran Fondo National Championship Series LLC has applied for permission to use roadways within the Township of Vernon to conduct a NJ Highlands Gran Fondo on Sunday, June 9, 2013; and

WHEREAS, the proceeds raised by the event will be donated to the Patriots Path Counsel Boy Scouts of America which stresses a healthy lifestyle; and

WHEREAS, the NJ Highlands Gran Fondo will encompass several towns and counties including Township of Vernon for 26-mile, 58-mile, and 98-mile routes providing a great opportunity to highlight the New Jersey Highlands area as a beautiful recreation destination, and that will offer all individuals the opportunity to challenge themselves.

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED by the Township Council of the Township of Vernon that there is no objection to the Gran Fondo National Championship Series LLC holding a NJ Highlands Gran Fondo on Sunday, June 9, 2013.

Resolution #13-43: Authorizing and Directing the Reinstatement of Installment Payments for the Woodland Hills Road Assessment on Block 123 Lot 6 Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:56-35(b)

WHEREAS, the Township Council confirmed the Special Assessment of the Woodland Hills Road Project by Resolution #06-152 dated October 2,2006; and

WHEREAS, Block 123 Lot 6 was assessed pursuant to said Resolution; and

WHEREAS, the Township Council is satisfied that the owners of said property failed to make the installment payment due as a result of extenuating circumstances over which they had no control as stated in their letter request dated January 25,2013; and

WHEREAS, the Township Council is authorized to reinstate the installment payments due under the assessment pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:56-35 (b).

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

  1. Upon payment by the owners of Block 123 Lot 6 of any and all delinquent payments for the Woodland Hills Road Special Assessment herein referenced together with any interest and/or penalties thereon, the Tax Collector is hereby authorized and instructed to accept said payment, interest and penalties and to restore to said owner the right to make future assessment payments pursuant to and under the installment payment plan established for the said assessment.
  2. Nothing herein should be construed to alter, amend or terminate the payments, past or future, owed by the owners of Block 123 Lot 6 due and owing under the referenced special assessment.
  3. This Resolution shall take effect immediately upon adoption according to law.

Resolution #13-44: A Resolution of the Township of Vernon, County of Sussex and State of New Jersey Demanding Ten (10) Days Credit to Be Awarded by Service Electric Cable TV and Communications to the Township of Vernon for Loss of Service During Superstorm Sandy

WHEREAS, Service Electric Cable TV and Communications (“Service Electric”) is the franchise cable provider for the Township of Vernon (“Township”); and

WHEREAS, during Superstorm Sandy, Township residents were without power, including cable services, for a period of at least ten (10) days; and

WHEREAS, utilities have rightfully agreed to give credit for lost services during Superstorm Sandy; and

WHEREAS, Service Electric has only agreed to give a credit of two (2) days for lost cable services during Superstorm Sandy

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Township Council of the Township of Vernon, County of Sussex and State of New Jersey that the Township is demanding a credit of ten (10) days from Service Electric for lost services during Superstorm Sandy on behalf of its residents based upon the suffering, volunteering and other efforts of Township residents during the storm.

This Resolution shall take effect immediately.

Resolution #13-45: Opposition to A-1196

WHEREAS, public safety employees and volunteers should be adequately compensated for on-duty accidents and illnesses; and

WHEREAS, New Jersey’s current Workers’ Compensation law is already one of the broadest in the country; and

WHEREAS, A-1196, as currently drafted, will make it almost impossible to contest claims from injuries and illnesses caused off-the-job; and

WHEREAS, this bill places the burden of proof on governmental employers to establish that an injury or illness, such as cancer, heart attack or hyper tension did not occur on the job; and

WHEREAS, the actuary for the Municipal Excess Liability Joint Insurance Fund (MEL) has estimated that A-1196 could easily double municipal Workers’ Compensation expense of $400 million per year; and

WHEREAS, the MEL and the League of Municipalities have offered to sit down with the supporters of this legislation to develop less expensive ways of improving the compensation to first responders.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Township Council of the Township of Vernon urge the legislature to reject A-1196, and urges the supporters of this legislation to work with the MEL and the League of Municipalities to develop less expensive ways to improve compensation to first responders; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Municipal Clerk is hereby directed to send certified copies of this resolution to Senate President Sweeney, Assembly Speaker Oliver, their Assembly representatives and Senators, Governor Christie, and the League of Municipalities.

Resolution #13-46: Authorizing Contract with Police Athletic League

The Council President asked for a motion to approve Resolution #13-46, renewing the contract with the PAL for administrative services for various recreational programs at $25,000.

Moved: Brian Lynch
Second: Dick Wetzel

Council Member Kadish noted concern for drug abuse funding. Mayor Marotta advised that the PAL has no authority over granting field usage, and that there was only 1 reference to the MAC program. Mr. Giaimis advised that it just relates to what they can charge families. Council President Rizzuto asked if the PAL could develop a program relative to drug abuse. The Mayor advised that they already do, and on a regular basis. Council Member Kadish asked for a statistical analysis of drug incidents and drug deaths from the Mayor. Council Member Wetzel advised that accurate information is available. Mayor Marotta advised that this information would be found in a police report, but that you would be faced with privacy laws, as well as HIPAA issues to review them and/or disclose the information. Council Member Dunn asked about a broader look at asking if we are doing everything we possibly can to combat drug abuse.

A roll call vote was taken:
Ayes: Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Brian Lynch, Dick Wetzel, Patrick Rizzuto
Nays: None
Resolutions #13-46 was approved.

Resolution #13-46: Resolution Authorizing the Execution of a Contract for Recreation Administrative Services to the Vernon Township Police Athletic League (PAL)

WHEREAS, the Township of Vernon runs various recreation programs;

WHEREAS, the Vernon Township Police Athletic League (PAL) is an established administrator and provider of recreational programs;

WHEREAS, there is a recommendation to transfer the administration of certain recreational programs to the PAL;

WHEREAS, providing these services through the PAL will result in less administrative responsibility for Township employees;

WHEREAS, paying the Vernon Township PAL the sum of $25,000.00 will reduce the budgeted contribution to the Vernon Township PAL;

NOW THEREFORE IT BE RESOLVED that the Mayor and Clerk are authorized to execute a contract with the Vernon Township PAL to provide recreation administration services for the sum of $25,000.00.

Ordinances

Introduction/1st Reading of Ordinance #13-01 by Title Only

Council President Rizzuto asked for a motion to approve Ordinance #13-01 on 1st reading by title only.
Motion: Brian Lynch
Second: Dick Wetzel

Council Member Daniel Kadish asked for details of this ordinance. Mayor Marotta noted that the capital budget had not yet been determined, but would be finalized based in part on the decision of Council with this ordinance.

A brief discussion was held on all-terrain vehicles for emergencies.

A roll call vote was taken:
Ayes: Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Brian Lynch, Dick Wetzel, Patrick Rizzuto
Nays: None
Ordinance #13-01 was approved on 1st reading by title only.

Ordinance #13-01: Ordinance Providing for Various Improvements or Purposes to be Undertaken by the Township of Vernon in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, Appropriating $100,000 Therefor, Constituting Proceeds of Obligations of the Township Heretofore Issued


Introduction/1st Reading of Ordinance #13-02 by Title Only

Council President Rizzuto asked for a motion to approve Ordinance #13-02 on 1st reading by title only.
Motion: Daniel Kadish
Second: Eddie Dunn

A roll call vote was taken:
Ayes: Eddie Dunn, Daniel Kadish, Brian Lynch, Dick Wetzel, Patrick Rizzuto
Nays: None
Ordinance #13-02 was approved on 1st reading by title only.

Ordinance #13-02: Capital Ordinance of the Township of Vernon in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, Authorizing the Purchase of Right Side Mounted Flail Mower, Appropriating Therefore the Sum of $35,000.00 and Providing that Such Sum So Appropriated Shall be Raised from the Capital Improvement Fund of the Township

Council Business

Council Member Lynch noted that Council President Rizzuto had asked for goals at the reorganization meeting of January 7. Mr. Lynch felt that Council had done so much in the past 11/2 years, but that he was concerned about the daily reporting by the local newspaper of a more political leaning with very little being said about actual positive actions—i.e. lake communities’ reimbursements being resolved as well as payments being brought current. As an example, it was reported that he had resigned as Council President, when his term was only for one year per Administrative Code. He further noted that the Vernon Vibes videos that are done after every meeting only generated one article about the Council President suggesting curb markers to guide snow plows. Mr. Lynch advised that he would like to develop a communication system to keep the residents apprised of activities, with emphasis on more of an editorial nature, rather than actual reporting.

Council Member Wetzel wished everyone a Happy Valentine’s Day.

Council Member Kadish handed out a notice to all members, which he read aloud, and asked to have the paper read into the record:

“On September 12, 2011, the Vernon council approved Resolution #11-175: Resolution Making a Special Emergency Appropriation of $1,000,000 and Authorizing the Issuance of Not Exceeding $1,000,000 Special Emergency Notes of the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, for the Purposes of Financing Such Appropriation.

This was subsequent to and in response to repairing the storm damage of ’Irene’ in Vernon Township. During discussion prior to the vote, Council President Lynch said that FEMA money would reimburse the cost of the bond. Mayor Marotta said FEMA would reimburse the bond. At that time I asked for updates and/or monthly reports on the spending related to the bond.

It is now one year and five months later, and there have been no reports to this Council regarding this $1,000,000 bond. It is at this time, I am requesting a thorough report from the Mayor, in writing, to the Council of all pertinent details of this bond. Those details need to include, but are not limited to:

  • How much of the $1,000.000 has been spent, to date?
  • How much has FEMA reimbursed Vernon of the expenses, to date?
  • What projects have been done—location and scope of work in detail, to date?
  • Who was paid for each project done, to date?
  • How much of the $1,000,000 was paid back by FEMA funds, to date?
  • How much of the $1,000,000 bond is still available, to date?
  • What is the plan to pay off this bond debt, in total?

Consider this my formal request for this information, in writing. Accurate and ongoing journalizing of the use of this bond money should make this report available to the council, by the mayor, in writing, by the next council meeting. Please furnish the entire council with the report.

Respectfully,
Councilman Dan Kadish”

Mayor Marotta asked if Council wished him to do so, he would provide such a report, though he felt that all questions asked had already been answered.

Motion

Council President Rizzuto asked for a motion to have the Mayor provide a report based on Council Member Kadish’s request.
Moved: Daniel Kadish
Second: Brian Lynch

Council Member Lynch advised that all questions he had were always answered, and the information on this bond was provided at all budget meetings.

A roll call vote was taken:
Ayes: Daniel Kadish, Dick Wetzel, Patrick Rizzuto
Nays: Eddie Dunn, Brian Lynch
Motion carried.

Council Member Dunn advised that the next EDAC meeting was scheduled for March 4, and that all were welcome. He suggested everyone participate in the Buy Local Campaign.

Council President

Council President Rizzuto noted the following items:

  • Due to this week’s snowstorm, there were record numbers of skiers and excessive traffic.
  • The DPW did a fantastic job on the roads.
  • The Mayor and Council Member Lynch joined him to meet with the Board of Education (and Mr. Lynch met with him and the Board as a whole on another occasion), advising that the Board was very receptive to comments/suggestions relative to reducing their tax base if possible. They are all committed to the children and the community.

Adjournment

There being no further items of business to be conducted at the Regular Meeting, a motion for Adjournment was made by Council Member Dunn. Motion seconded by Council Member Wetzel, with all members voting in favor.

The Regular Meeting of the Township Council of the Township of Vernon was adjourned at 9:23 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Susan S. Nelson, RMC
Municipal Clerk

Minutes approved: May 13, 2013