Minutes: June 14, 2021

YouTube video of the June 14, 2021 council meeting »

The regular meeting of the Township Council of the Township of Vernon was convened at 7:00 p.m. on June 14, 2021 via Zoom Webinar in the Vernon Municipal Center, 21 Church Street, Vernon, New Jersey with Council President Harry Shortway presiding.

Statement of Compliance

Adequate notice of this meeting has been provided to the public and the press on January 6, 2021 and on April 8, 2021 and was posted on the bulletin board in the Municipal Building in accordance with the Open Public Meetings Act, N.J.S.A. 10:4-7.

Roll Call

Present were Council Members John Auberger, Toni Cilli, Andrew Pitsker, Kelly Weller and Council President Harry Shortway. Also present were Mayor Howard Burrell, Business Administrator Charles Voelker, CFO Donelle Bright, and Township Attorney Josh Zielinski.

Salute to the Flag

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

Proclamation

Sussex County Pride

Public Comments (For Current Agenda Items Only, Limited to 3 minutes per person)

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to open the meeting to public comments.
MOVED: John Auberger
SECOND: Andrew Pitsker
All members present voted in favor.

Zoe Heath - Vernon Township, on behalf of Sussex County Pride and all of the LGBTQ residents of Vernon, she wanted to thank the Mayor and Council for recognizing June as Pride Month for the third yar in a row.

Seeing no other members of the public wishing to speak, Council President Shortway asked for a motion to close the meeting for public comments.
MOTION: John Auberger
SECOND: Andrew Pitsker
All members were in favor.

Discussion Item

Cannabis Legalization/Local Control

Council Member Cilli started the discussion by saying that we have until August 21, 2021 to decide if we want to opt out. If we do nothing that means we want to opt in. Council Member Cilli feels that opting in is a bad idea. She said there are six classes of licenses; Cultivator, Manufacturer, Wholesaler, Distributor, Retailor, and Delivery Service. Council Member Cilli said she is not opposed to growers and processors but she feels that our town should not have a distribution center. She said a lot of towns around us are opting out. She spoke to Karen D’Avino, Superintendent of Schools, and found out that our schools are loaded with kids vaping. Council Member Cilli said a retail store will cause a lot of issues for our police, Mountain Creek and our schools.

Council Member Weller agreed with Council Member Cilli, she does not want cannabis sold in the town. She feels that cannabis is a gateway drug and the small amount of tax dollars that will be bought back is not worth surrendering our town to. Council Member Weller said it opens the door to thongs we do not need.

Council Member Cilli said it is taught in school that marijuana is a gateway drug so why would we have that in our town. She agrees that it is not worth the taxes.

Council Member Auberger feels that this is a very hard subject. He said that when does government tell me what I want to do if something is legal.

Council Member Pitsker has been reviewing ordinances from other towns and he feels that there needs to be some kind of control on businesses or growers and we can work on zoning to establish this.

Mayor Burrell commented saying, let me first advise that I have asked our municipal attorney to prepare a legal presentation to the Mayor and Council as to our options, and the actions that we need to take within what time frame, in order to implement the options that the Mayor and Council collective choose, in regards to the cannabis issue.

I will sum up my current view on this issue with the following 4 points:

POINT 1: I clearly understand the various issues of concern about cannabis and any other substance with the potential to add to the awful problem that our nation and the world is dealing with in the form of addiction.

I have worked in the field of substance abuse, and have volunteered as part of a team that has the mission to curb addiction.

POINT 2: If I thought for one second that having our town to opt out of having any individual or company to us their legal cannabis license to establish a business in Vernon would ensure that not a single child or adult would get and misuse this product, I would strongly advocate with the Council that we opt out.

However, I don’t believe that to be the case.

Like cigarettes and alcohol, two other legal products that can be sold to individuals 21 years of age or older; and two other legal products that can be and often are misused in addictive manners, those individuals who want these legal products will simply go across our municipal boarders and purchase these products there.

And other municipalities, and not Vernon Township, will get the tax dollars that come from this legal product.

POINT 3: In addition to the greatly needed extra property tax dollars that will come to the town from the construction and improvement of facilities needed by the holders of Class 1 Cultivator, Class 2 Manufacturer, and Class 3 Wholesaler licenses, it’s my understanding that the town in which these facilities are located can also reap funds in the amount of 2% of the gross revenue earned by holders of Class 1 Cultivator and Class 2 Manufacturer licenses, and 1% of the gross revenue earned by holders of Class 3 Wholesaler licenses.

That could be a significant amount of money that could help reduce and/or stabilize property taxes for homeowners.

POINT 4: Last year, when the state of New Jersey had a state wide vote on whether the public was in favor of legalizing cannabis use and sale, 66% of the voters in our county said yes; 68% of the voters in our state said yes; and the percent of yes votes in our town was greater than either of those figures - - 70% of the Vernon voters said yes.

Therefore, based on everything that I know and understand to be true at this point in time, I believe that our town should not opt out of this legal revenue enhancement opportunity. And that we should instead focus on taking the actions necessary to ensuring that we don’t have a cannabis selling shop on every corner, nor in areas of our township where we don’t want them to be.

Council Member Cilli said we are trying to do a trail, a pump track and all healthy things to keep kids busy and doing sports and then have a cannabis shop in town. This does not make sense.

Council Members Weller and Cilli asked at what cost for the town if we say yes to this.

Minutes

May 24, 2021 - Regular Meeting
May 24, 2021 - Executive Session

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve the above minutes.
MOVED: Andrew Pitsker
SECOND: Kelly Weller

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion carried to approve the May 24, 2021 regular and executive session minutes.

Resolutions

Resolutions #21-146, 21-153, 21-154, 21-158 and 21-159 were pulled from this agenda.

Resolution #21-143: Resolution Providing for the Combination of Certain Issues of Bonds of the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, into a Single Issue of General Bonds Aggregating $15,017,000 in Principle Amount

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-143

Council Member Pitsker asked what the overall cost savings is to combine all of these bonds.

CFO Donelle Bright explained that doing individual sales of the bonds costs more money than having a bond sale for one bond. The first resolution requires adoption in order for the Township to issue bonds at one time by combining each of these ordinances into one sale. As you can see, the useful lives of these ordinances are fairly low, but the inclusion of Bond Ordinance 11-22 (the purchase of the United Water sewer system) allows for a longer average useful life since its statutory useful life is 40 years. Combining these ordinances allows for not only one bond sale, but the ability to extend the debt schedule in order to avoid major fluctuations in debt service.

The second resolution details how the bonds are to be sold and structured. Section 1 explains the principal paydowns for these bonds. Because interest will be greater at the start of the bonds and lower at the end of the bond life, the principal is structured to be less at the beginning and greater at the end (similar to paying off a mortgage). Section 2 discusses the amount of each issuance ($5,000 increments at minimum); these and other conditions are standard on bond sales. Section 3 details the time frame the Township is locked into the bonds (seven full paydown years from 2022-2028); the Township is not permitted to refund/refinance these bonds until after March 2028 for obligations due after March 1, 2029.

As the Chief Financial Officer, it is my responsibility to offer advice on the best financial pathways available to the Township. Based on the current market trends for municipal bonds, I would strongly advise permanent financing on the debt portions listed in the first resolution within the next few months to ensure the Township takes advantage of low interest rates while available. Bonds that the Township refunded in 2020 had an average coupon rate of 4.125%-4.500%; after refunding, the Township was able to close on coupon rates with an average of2.997%. The market is still favorable for municipal bonding and it could save the Township significantly long-term rather than relying on short-term notes until 2023, when we will need to permanently finance based on State statute.

MOVED: Andrew Pitsker
SECOND: John Auberger

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-143.

Resolution #21-143: Resolution Providing for the Combination of Certain Issues of Bonds of the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, into a Single Issue of General Bonds Aggregating $15,017,000 in Principle Amount

BE IT RESOLVED BY THE TOWNSHIP COUNCIL OF THE TOWNSHIP OF VERNON, IN THE COUNTY OF SUSSEX, NEW JERSEY, AS FOLLOWS:

Section 1. Pursuant to the provisions of Section 40A:2-26 of the Local Bond Law of New Jersey, particularly paragraph (f) thereof and in lieu of the sale of more than one issue of bonds as provided for in said Local Bond Law, the several issues of bonds of this local unit described in Section 2 hereof, authorized pursuant to bond ordinances of the local unit heretofore adopted, shall be combined into a single and combined issue of bonds in the principal amount of $15,017,000.

Section 2. The principal amount of the bonds of the several issues of bonds to be combined into a single issue as above provided, the bond ordinance authorizing each of said several issues described by reference to its title and date of adoption, and the period or average period of usefulness determined in each of said bond ordinances are respectively as follows:

Principal Amount of BondsTitle of Ordinance and Date of AdoptionPeriod or Average Period of Usefulness (in Years)
$3,468,000 bonds"Bond ordinance providing for the acquisition of sanitary sewerage collection and transmission facilities in and by the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, appropriating $4,000,000 therefor and authorizing the issuance of $3,809,000 bonds or notes of the Township for financing such appropriation," finally adopted on November 14, 2011 (#11-22)40
$1,560,000 bonds"Bond ordinance appropriating $2,350,000, and authorizing the issuance of $2,066,000 bonds or notes of the Township, for various improvements or purposes authorized to be undertaken by the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey," finally adopted on June 23, 2014 (#14-12)12.72
$1,039,425 bonds"Bond ordinance appropriating $1,534,557, and authorizing the issuance of $1,266,625 bonds or notes of the Township, for various improvements or purposes authorized to be undertaken by the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey," finally adopted on May 28, 2015 (#15-16)11.73
$1,106,575 bonds"Bond ordinance appropriating $1,614,500, and authorizing the issuance of $1,307,000 bonds or notes of the Township, for various improvements or purposes authorized to be undertaken by the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey," finally adopted on June 13, 2016 (#16-15)10.31
$2,634,556 bonds"Bond ordinance appropriating $3,636,500, and authorizing the issuance of $2,948,000 bonds or notes of the Township, for various improvements or purposes authorized to be undertaken by the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey," finally adopted on June 26, 2017 (#17-09)9.65
$200,000 bonds"Bond ordinance making a supplemental appropriation of $210,000 for the acquisition of a new fire truck heretofore authorized to be undertaken by the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, and authorizing the issuance of $200,000 bonds or notes of the Township for financing such supplemental appropriation," finally adopted on February 15, 2018 (#18-07)10
$1,326,500 bonds"Bond ordinance appropriating $2,380,870, and authorizing the issuance of $1,453,000 bonds or notes of the Township, for various improvements or purposes authorized to be undertaken by the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey," finally adopted on April 23, 2018 (#18-17)9.23
$692,750 bonds"Bond ordinance providing for the installation of turf fields at Maple Grange Park in and by the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, appropriating $872,750 therefor and authorizing the issuance of $692,750 bonds or notes of the Township for financing such appropriation," finally adopted on July 22, 2019 (#19-15)15
$856,777 bonds"Bond ordinance appropriating $1,165,918, and authorizing the issuance of $856,777 bonds or notes of the Township, for various improvements or purposes authorized to be undertaken by the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey," finally adopted on July 22, 2019 (#19-16)11.91
$2,132,417 bonds"Bond ordinance appropriating $2,600,500, and authorizing the issuance of $2,132,857 bonds or notes of the Township, for various improvements or purposes authorized to be undertaken by the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey," finally adopted on May 28, 2020 (#20-11)10.68

Section 3. The following matters are hereby determined with respect to said combined issue of bonds:

(a) The average period of usefulness, taking into consideration the respective amounts of obligations authorized to be issued pursuant to each of said bond ordinances, respectively, is 17.66 years.

(b) The bonds of said combined issue shall be designated "General Bonds of 2021" and shall mature within the said average period of usefulness hereinabove determined.

(c) The bonds of said combined issue shall be sold and issued in accordance with the provisions of said Local Bond Law applicable to the sale and issue of a single issue of bonds.

Section 4. The following additional matters are hereby determined, declared, recited and stated:

(a) None of the bonds of the several issues of bonds described in Section 2 hereof has been heretofore sold or issued and the several bond ordinances described in Section 2 hereof have not heretofore been rescinded and now remain in full force and effect as authorizations for the amount of bonds set forth opposite the title of the several bond ordinances described in said Section 2 hereof.

(b) No bonds are authorized by any of the bond ordinances described in Section 2 hereof, except bonds in the amount set opposite the title of said bond ordinances in Section 2 hereof.

(c) The several purposes for the financing of which the bonds described in Section 2 hereof have been authorized to be issued pursuant to the respective bond ordinances described in Section 2 hereof are purposes for which bonds of this local unit may lawfully be issued pursuant to said Local Bond Law and are not purposes for which a deduction may be taken in any annual or supplemental debt statement of the local unit.

Section 5. This resolution shall take effect immediately.

Resolution #21-144: Resolution Determining the Form and Other Details of $15,017,000 General Bonds of 2021 of the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, and Providing for Their Sale

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-144
MOVED: John Auberger
SECOND: Toni Cilli

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-144.

Resolution #21-144: Resolution Determining the Form and Other Details of $15,017,000 General Bonds of 2021 of the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, and Providing for Their Sale

BE IT RESOLVED BY THE TOWNSHIP COUNCIL OF THE TOWNSHIP OF VERNON, IN THE COUNTY OF SUSSEX, NEW JERSEY, AS FOLLOWS:

Section 1. Terms of Bonds. The $15,017,000 General Bonds of 2021 (the "Bonds") of the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey (the "Township"), referred to and described in the resolution adopted pursuant to the Local Bond Law of the State of New Jersey, by the Township Council of the Township on June 14, 2021, entitled "Resolution providing for the combination of certain issues of bonds of the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, into a single issue of General Bonds aggregating $15,017,000 in principal amount" and authorized by certain bond ordinances of the Township therein described, shall be dated the date of delivery thereof, shall bear interest payable semi-annually on March 1 and September 1 in each year, commencing March 1, 2022, expressed in a multiple of 1/100th of 1% or a multiple of 1/8 of 1%, shall mature in the principal amount of $832,000 on March 1, 2022, $885,000 on March 1, 2023, $905,000 on March 1, 2024, $925,000 on March 1, 2025, $940,000 on March 1, 2026, $960,000 on March 1, 2027, $980,000 on March 1, 2028, $1,000,000 on March 1, 2029, $1,020,000 on March 1, 2030, $1,040,000 on March 1, 2031, $1,060,000 on March 1, 2032, $1,085,000 on March 1, 2033, $1,105,000 on March 1, 2034, $1,130,000 on March 1, 2035 and $1,150,000 on March 1, 2036, and shall each bear a distinctive number to distinguish it from all other Bonds of said issue.

Section 2. Book-Entry-Only Bonds. The Bonds shall be issued by means of a book-entry system with no physical distribution of bond certificates made to the public. The Bonds shall be issued in registered form and bond certificates for each maturity will be issued to The Depository Trust Company, New York, New York ("DTC"), registered in the name of its nominee Cede & Co., and immobilized in its custody. A book-entry system will be employed, evidencing ownership of the Bonds in principal amount of $5,000 or any $1,000 increment in excess thereof, with transfers of ownership affected on the records of DTC and its participants pursuant to rules and procedures adopted by DTC and its participants. The successful bidder, as a condition to the delivery of the Bonds, will be required to deposit the bond certificates with DTC, registered in the name of Cede & Co. So long as Cede & Co. is the registered owner of the Bonds, principal and redemption price, if any, of and interest on the Bonds will be payable by the Township or its agent to DTC or its nominee as registered owner of the Bonds. The Bonds shall be executed in the name of the Township by the manual or facsimile signatures of its Mayor and its Chief Financial Officer, under the seal of the Township affixed, imprinted or otherwise reproduced thereon and attested by the manual signature of its Township Clerk.

Section 3. Redemption. (A) The Bonds maturing prior to March 1, 2029 are not subject to redemption prior to maturity at the option of the Township. The Bonds maturing on or after March 1, 2029 are subject to redemption prior to maturity at the option of the Township upon notice as described below in whole or in part, in any order of maturity and by lot within a maturity if less than all the Bonds of such maturity are to be redeemed, on any date on or after March 1, 2028, at a redemption price equal to 100% of the principal amount thereof, together with interest accrued, if any, to the date fixed for redemption.

(B) Notice of redemption shall be given by first-class mail, postage prepaid, to the registered owners of the Bonds or portions thereof to be redeemed, not less than thirty (30) days nor more than sixty (60) days prior to the redemption date, but such mailing shall not be a condition precedent to such redemption and failure so to mail any such notice shall not affect the validity of any proceedings for the redemption of Bonds. If notice of redemption shall have been given as aforesaid, the Bonds or portions thereof specified in said notice shall become due and payable at the redemption price on the redemption date therein designated and if, on the redemption date, moneys for payment of the redemption price of all the Bonds to be redeemed, together with interest to the redemption date, shall be available for such payment on said date, then from and after the redemption date interest on such Bonds shall cease to accrue and become payable. Less than all of a Bond in a denomination in excess of $5,000 may be so redeemed, and in such case, upon the surrender of such Bond, there shall be issued to the registered owner thereof, without charge therefor, for the unredeemed balance of the principal amount of such Bond, Bonds of like series, designation, maturity and interest rate in any of the authorized denominations. So long as DTC (or any successor thereto) acts as securities depository for the Bonds, notice of redemption shall be sent to such securities depository in accordance with its customary procedures and shall not be sent to the beneficial owners of the Bonds.

Section 4. Form of Bonds. The Bonds shall be in substantially the following forms with such changes and modifications as may be required, necessary, convenient or desirable for delivery thereof:

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
STATE OF NEW JERSEY
THE TOWNSHIP OF VERNON,
IN THE COUNTY OF SUSSEX
GENERAL BOND OF 2021

Number:R - G - ___
Registered Owner:Cede & Co
Principal Amount:$___________
Dated Date:July 21, 2021
Interest Rate:_______%
Maturity Date:March 1, ______
CUSIP Number:924735

THE TOWNSHIP OF VERNON, IN THE COUNTY OF SUSSEX (the "Township"), a municipal corporation of the State of New Jersey, situate in said County of Sussex, hereby acknowledges itself indebted and for value received promises to pay to the above-stated Registered Owner or registered assigns, the above-stated Principal Amount on the above-stated Maturity Date upon presentation and surrender of this bond, and to pay to the registered owner hereof interest on such sum, from the date of this bond until it matures or is redeemed, at the above-stated Interest Rate per annum payable semi-annually on March 1 and September 1 in each year, commencing March 1, 2022. Principal or redemption price, if any, of this bond will be paid in lawful money of the United States of America at the office of the Chief Financial Officer, Municipal Building, 21 Church Street, Vernon, New Jersey. Interest on this bond will be payable by check or draft mailed to the registered owner hereof whose name appears on the registration books of the Township on February 15 and August 15 next preceding each interest payment date.

This bond is transferable only upon the books of the Township kept for that purpose at the office of the Chief Financial Officer, Municipal Building, 21 Church Street, Vernon, New Jersey (the "Transfer Agent"), by the registered owner hereof in person or by his attorney duly authorized in writing, upon surrender hereof together with a written instrument of transfer satisfactory to the Transfer Agent duly executed by the registered owner or such duly authorized attorney, and thereupon the Township shall issue in the name of the transferee a new bond or bonds of the same aggregate principal amount and series, designation, maturity and interest rate as the surrendered bond. The Township, the Transfer Agent and any paying agent of the Township may treat and consider the person in whose name this bond is registered as the holder and absolute owner hereof for the purpose of receiving payment of, or on account of, the principal and interest due hereon and for all other purposes whatsoever.

This bond is one of an authorized issue of bonds and is issued pursuant to the Local Bond Law of the State of New Jersey, and as provided by resolution of the Township Council of the Township, entitled: "Resolution providing for the combination of certain issues of bonds of the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, into a single issue of General Bonds aggregating $15,017,000 in principal amount," adopted on June 14, 2021 and the bond ordinances referred to therein.

The bonds maturing prior to March 1, 2029, are not subject to redemption prior to maturity at the option of the Township. The bonds maturing on or after March 1, 2029, are subject to redemption prior to maturity at the option of the Township upon notice as described below in whole or in part, in any order of maturity and by lot within a maturity if less than all the bonds of such maturity are to be redeemed, on any date on or after March 1, 2028 at a redemption price equal to 100% of the principal amount thereof, together with interest accrued, if any, to the date fixed for redemption.

Notice of redemption shall be given by first-class mail, postage prepaid, to the registered owners of the bonds or portions thereof to be redeemed, not less than thirty (30) days nor more than sixty (60) days prior to the redemption date, but such mailing shall not be a condition precedent to such redemption and failure so to mail any such notice shall not affect the validity of any proceedings for the redemption of bonds. If notice of redemption shall have been given as aforesaid, the bonds or portions thereof specified in said notice shall become due and payable at the redemption price on the redemption date therein designated and if, on the redemption date, moneys for payment of the redemption price of all the bonds to be redeemed, together with interest to the redemption date, shall be available for such payment on said date, then from and after the redemption date interest on such bonds shall cease to accrue and become payable. Less than all of a bond in a denomination in excess of $5,000 may be so redeemed, and in such case, upon the surrender of such bond, there shall be issued to the registered owner thereof, without charge therefor, for the unredeemed balance of the principal amount of such bond, bonds of like series, designation, maturity and interest rate in any of the authorized denominations. So long as DTC (or any successor thereto) acts as securities depository for the Bonds, notice of redemption shall be sent to such securities depository in accordance with its customary procedures and shall not be sent to the beneficial owners of the Bonds.

The full faith and credit of the Township are hereby irrevocably pledged for the punctual payment of the principal or redemption price, if any, and interest on this bond according to its terms.

It is hereby certified and recited that all conditions, acts and things required by the Constitution or statutes of the State of New Jersey to exist, to have happened or to have been performed precedent to or in the issuance of this bond exist, have happened and have been performed, and that the issue of bonds of which this is one does not exceed any limitation imposed thereon by said Constitution or statutes.

Resolution #21-145: Resolution of the Council of the Township of Vernon, County of Sussex, Requesting Permission from and to Make Application to Sussex County for the Placement of a “Welcome to Vernon” Sign on Route 515, Prices Switch Board

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-145
MOVED: John Auberger
SECOND: Kelly Weller

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-145.

Resolution #21-145: Resolution of the Council of the Township of Vernon, County of Sussex, Requesting Permission from and to Make Application to Sussex County for the Placement of a “Welcome to Vernon” Sign on Route 515, Prices Switch Board

WHEREAS, the Township of Vernon desires to welcome motorists to the Township as they enter Vernon’s borders; and

WHEREAS, a heavily motored point of access in the Township is County Route 515 at the border of the State of New York; and

WHEREAS, the Township would like to request that Sussex allow the Township to place 36" x 48" sign on Route 515 at its border, but within the Township of Vernon.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, by the Council of the Township of Vernon that it is requested that Sussex County Board grant permission for the placement of one (1) 36" x 48" signs, within the Township of Vernon, at the borders as noted below:

* Route 515 at the border of Vernon and New York State; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOVLED, that the Township Mayor, Administration, Director of Public Works, Chief of Police and Municipal Clerk are authorized to sign and/or submit an application and the necessary documentation for Application for Opening a County Highway to facilitate the placement of the aforementioned signs.

Resolution #21-147: Chapter 159 Resolution Requesting Approval of Revenue and Appropriation Amending the 2021 Budget as a Revenue and Appropriation of $61,140.00

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-147
MOVED: Andrew Pitsker
SECOND: Toni Cilli

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-147.

Resolution #21-147: Chapter 159 Resolution Requesting Approval of Revenue and Appropriation Amending the 2021 Budget as a Revenue and Appropriation of $61,140.00

WHEREAS, N.J.S.A. 40A:4-87 provides that the Director of the Division of Local Government Services may approve the insertion of any special item of revenue in the budget of any county or municipality when such item shall have been made available by law and the amount thereof was not determined at the time of the adoption of the budget; and

WHEREAS, said Director may also approve the insertion of an item of appropriation for an equal amount; and

WHEREAS, the Township has been awarded a $61,140.00 State of New Jersey Body-Worn Camera Grant; and wishes to amend its 2021 budget for the difference of the awarded amount as a revenue.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Township Council of the Township of Vernon hereby requests the Director of the Division of Local Government Services to approve the insertion of an item of revenue in the budget of the year 2021 in the sum of $61,140.00 which is now available as a revenue,

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a like sum of $61,140.00 is hereby appropriated under the caption State of New Jersey Body-Worn Camera Grant.

Resolution #21-148: Chapter 159 Resolution Requesting Approval of Revenue and Appropriation Amending the 2021 Budget as a Revenue and Appropriation of $55,831.51

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-148
MOVED: Kelly Weller
SECOND: Andrew Pitsker

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-148.

Resolution #21-148: Chapter 159 Resolution Requesting Approval of Revenue and Appropriation Amending the 2021 Budget as a Revenue and Appropriation of $55,831.51

WHEREAS, N.J.S.A. 40A:4-87 provides that the Director of the Division of Local Government Services may approve the insertion of any special item of revenue in the budget of any county or municipality when such item shall have been made available by law and the amount thereof was not determined at the time of the adoption of the budget; and

WHEREAS, said Director may also approve the insertion of an item of appropriation for an equal amount; and

WHEREAS, the Township has been awarded a $55,831.51 Clean Communities Grant; and wishes to amend its 2021 budget for the difference of the awarded amount as a revenue.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Township Council of the Township of Vernon hereby requests the Director of the Division of Local Government Services to approve the insertion of an item of revenue in the budget of the year 2021 in the sum of $55,831.51 which is now available as a revenue,

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a like sum of $55,831.51 is hereby appropriated under the caption Clean Communities Grant.

Resolution #21-149: Authorizing Negotiations for Fire Alarm Installation Under N.J.S.A. 40A:11-5(3)

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-149
MOVED: Kelly Weller
SECOND: Toni Cilli

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-149.

Resolution #21-149: Authorizing Negotiations for Fire Alarm Installation Under N.J.S.A. 40A:11-5(3)

WHEREAS the Township publicly advertised and sought receipt of public bids on June 30, 2020 at 9:00am and September 16, 2020 9:00 A.M. for a total of two (2) times for Fire Alarm Installation; and,

WHEREAS, the Township has duly advertised for Bids 2-2020 and 2R-2020 where all responses were over budgetary allotments; and,

WHEREAS, the New Jersey State Local Publics Contract Law, N.J.S. A40A:11-5(3) allows for negotiations subsequent to two (2) rejected or non-received bids; and,

WHEREAS it remains the desire of Township of Vernon to secure a contract with a local and economically efficient provider of Fire Alarm systems; and,

WHEREAS relief is available through the New Jersey Local Public Contract Law N.J.S.A.40A:11-5(3) and the Township desires to avail itself of this remedy through negotiations

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Township Council of the Township of Vernon, Sussex County, that the Township Administrator and Qualified Purchasing Agent or their designee are authorized to enter into negotiations with contractors under the provisions of N.J.S.A. 40A:11- 5(3) which correspond to available funding.

This Resolution shall take effect immediately.

Resolution #21-150: Authorize the Award of a Required Disclosure Contract with “Rapid Recovery Services, LLC” for Municipal Building Front Door Construction

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-150
MOVED: Andrew Pitsker
SECOND: Toni Cilli

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-150.

Resolution #21-150: Authorize the Award of a Required Disclosure Contract with “Rapid Recovery Services, LLC” for Municipal Building Front Door Construction

WHEREAS, the Township of Vernon has a need for contractor for construction and repair of Municipal Building front entrance at 21 Church Street through Rapid Recovery Services, LLC, 375 North St. Unit Q, Teterboro, NJ 07608 as a required disclosure contract pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 19:44A-20.5; and,

WHEREAS, it has been determined that the value of the acquisition will exceed $17,500; and,

WHEREAS, Rapid Recovery Services, LLC, in the aggregate is expected to provide more than the pay to play threshold of $17,500.00; and

WHEREAS, Rapid Recovery Services, LLC, has completed and submitted a Business Entity Disclosure Certification and a Personal Contribution Disclosure form which certifies that Rapid Recovery Services, LLC has not made any reportable contributions to a political or candidate committee in the Township of Vernon in the previous one year, and that the contract will prohibit Rapid Recovery Services, LLC from making any reportable contributions through the term of the contract, and

WHEREAS the Chief Financial Officer hereby certifies that funds not to exceed $22,242.00 are available effective June 17, 2021 in Line Items C-04-20-011 and C-04-21-012

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Mayor and Council of the Township of Vernon authorizes the Mayor to enter into a contract with Rapid Recovery Services, LLC, 375 North St. Unit Q, Teterboro, NJ 07608, not to exceed $22,242.00 for construction and repair of the Municipal Building front entrance at 21 Church Street; and,

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Business Disclosure Entity Certification and Personal Contribution Disclosure form, Determination of Value be placed on file with this resolution.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this resolution shall take effect June 17, 2021.

Resolution #21-151: Authorizing Contracts with Certain Approved Educational Services Commission of New Jersey Cooperative Contract Vender Shaw Sports Turf for Turf Installation at Maple Grange Park through ESCNJ Contract ESCNJ/AEPA 20-A

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-151
MOVED: Toni Cilli
SECOND: Andrew Pitsker

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-151.

Resolution #21-151: Authorizing Contracts with Certain Approved Educational Services Commission of New Jersey Cooperative Contract Vender Shaw Sports Turf for Turf Installation at Maple Grange Park through ESCNJ Contract ESCNJ/AEPA 20-A

WHEREAS the Township of Vernon may by resolution, and without advertising for bids or obtaining quotations, purchase any goods or services as per N.J.S.A. 40A:11-11, under the Educational Services Commission of New Jersey Cooperative Pricing System; and

WHEREAS, the Township has the need on a timely basis to purchase goods and services utilizing Educational Service Commission of New Jersey Contracts, duly authorized under law to extend contract pricing to local units, per N.J.A.C. 5:34-7 et. Seq.; and

WHEREAS Shaw Sports Turf 185 South Industrial Blvd, Calhoun, GA 30701, currently holds the ESCNJ contract ESCNJ/AEPA 20-A for such procurements; and

WHEREAS the Township intends to enter into contract for procurement and installation of a synthetic turf field at Maple Grange Park in the amount of $484,795.00 through Shaw Sports Turf 185 South Industrial Blvd, Calhoun, GA 3070; and

WHEREAS, the Chief Financial Officer has certified that funds in the amount of $484,795.00 are available effective June 17, 2021 in Line Items: C-04-19-015, C-04-21-012, T-16-56-809, and the Reserve for Maple Grange Turf Fields.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Township Council of the Township of Vernon, authorizes the Mayor to enter into a contract for procurement and installation of synthetic turf field at Maple Grange Park in the amount of $484,795.00 through Shaw Sports Turf 185 South Industrial Blvd, Calhoun, GA 3070, through ESCNJ/AEPA 20-A; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this resolution shall take effect June 17, 2021.

Resolution #21-152: Resolution Enabling Agent and Contracting for Online Power Purchase

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-152
MOVED: Kelly Weller
SECOND: Toni Cilli

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-152.

Resolution #21-152: Resolution Enabling Agent and Contracting for Online Power Purchase

WHEREAS the NJ Department of Community Affairs, Division of Local Government Services, permits public entities - as per P.L.2001, c.30 - to utilize Division-approved online purchasing agents to secure energy supply contracts through an online bidding/reverse auction process; and

WHEREAS the services of said approved agents are exempt from public bidding, as per P.L.2001, c.30; and

WHEREAS the governing body of the Township of Vernon desires to utilize Transparent Energy ("TE") - a BPU certified and DCA approved provider of online energy procurement services - to secure natural gas and electricity supply contracts; and

WHEREAS the NJDCA and NJBPU advise that contracts for power supply should be awarded shortly after an online auction is conducted in order to ensure the lowest possible rates;

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the governing body of the Township of Vernon authorizes TE to investigate market conditions and, when directed by approved Township of Vernon officer(s), conduct online auctions for the purpose of securing natural gas and electricity supply contracts for its utility accounts.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the governing body of the Township of Vernon authorizes Mayor Burrell or his designee to award and sign power supply contracts on the day that the auctions close, provided that the natural gas and electricity rates procured are at least 7% and 12% lower - respectively - than those provided by the local utility company.

Resolution #21-155: Authorize the Award of a Required Disclosure Contract with Host Compliance LLC for Compliance Software

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-155
MOVED: John Auberger
SECOND: Kelly Weller

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-155.

Resolution #21-155: Authorize the Award of a Required Disclosure Contract with Host Compliance LLC for Compliance Software

WHEREAS, the Township of Vernon has a need for contractor, power and safety supplies for its operations in service of the residents of the Township, through Host Compliance LLC, 408 St. Peter Street, Suite 600, St. Paul, MN 55012 as a required disclosure contract pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 19:44A-20.4; and,

WHEREAS, the Sean Canning, Q.P.A., of the Canning Group, LLC has determined and certified in writing that the value of the acquisition will exceed $17,500; and,

WHEREAS, the anticipated term of this contract is for the year of 2021-2022; and

WHEREAS, Host Compliance LLC, 408 St. Peter Street, Suite 600, St. Paul, MN 55012, in the aggregate is expected to provide more than the pay to play threshold of $17,500.00; and

WHEREAS, Host Compliance LLC, 408 St. Peter Street, Suite 600, St. Paul, MN 55012, has completed and submitted a Business Entity Disclosure Certification and a Personal Contribution Disclosure form which certifies that Host Compliance LLC has not made any reportable contributions to a political or candidate committee in the Township of Vernon in the previous one year, and that the contract will prohibit Host Compliance LLC from making any reportable contributions through the term of the contract, and

WHEREAS, the subject to the governing bodies approval of future budgets the Chief Financial Officer hereby certifies that funds NOT TO EXCEED $27,175.51 are available in Line Items:

2021: 1-01-20-100-20
2022: 2-01-20-100-20 (subject to the 2022 Budget)

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Mayor and Council of the Township of Vernon authorizes the Business Administrator to enter into a contract with Host Compliance LLC, 408 St. Peter Street, Suite 600, St. Paul, MN 55012, not to exceed $27,175.51 for the 2021-22 budget year for contractor, power and safety supplies; and,

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Business Disclosure Entity Certification and Personal Contribution Disclosure form, Determination of Value be placed on file with this resolution.

Resolution #21-156: Authorizing Contracts with Certain Approved Sussex County Cooperative Contract Vendors

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-156
MOVED: Andrew Pitsker
SECOND: Kelly Weller

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-156.

Resolution #21-156: Authorizing Contracts with Certain Approved Sussex County Cooperative Contract Vendors

WHEREAS, the Township of Vernon may by resolution, and without advertising for bids or obtaining quotations, purchase any goods or services under the Sussex County Cooperative; and

WHEREAS, the Township has the need on a timely basis to purchase goods and services utilizing Sussex County Cooperative Contracts, duly authorized under law to extend contract pricing to local units, per N.J.A.C. 5:34-7 et. Seq.; and

WHEREAS the Township intends to enter into contract for a Freightliner 108SD Conventional Chassis Materials authorized under Sussex County Cooperative Purchasing award in the amount of $105,524.00; and

WHEREAS, the County of Sussex has extended pricing authorized under the cooperative for the following companies and prices units Robert H. Hoover & Sons 149 Gold Mine Road, Flanders, N.J. 07836; and

WHEREAS the Chief Financial Officer certifies funding is available in the amount of $105,524.00 effective June 17, 2021 in Line Item: C-04-21-012.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Township Council of the Township of Vernon, authorizes the Mayor to enter into a contract with approved Sussex County Cooperative Contracts extended to municipal units, pursuant to all conditions of the individual State contracts to wit Freightliner 108SD Conventional Chassis through Robert H. Hoover & Sons in the amount of $105,524.00

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this resolution shall take effect June 17, 2021.

Resolution #21-157: Authorizing the Use of Open Space Funds for the Construction & Maintenance of the Vernon Town Center Bike & Walking Trail

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-157
MOVED: Andrew Pitsker
SECOND: John Auberger

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-157.

Resolution #21-157: Authorizing the Use of Open Space Funds for the Construction & Maintenance of the Vernon Town Center Bike & Walking Trail

WHEREAS, the Township wishes to develop a bike and walking trail system in the Township and promote the development of a community that offers free hiking, biking and performing arts programs; and

WHEREAS, the Township approved by Referendum to allow a portion of the Open Space Trust Fund for trail development and other improvements to properties already preserved as open space; and

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, by the Council of the Township of Vernon that it hereby approves the use of funds from the Township Open Trust Fund for the engineering design for the construction of the Town Center Bike and Walking Trail of up to a maximum amount of $106,603.88.

Resolution #21-160: Resolution Authorizing a Microsoft Cloud Agreement with Tangent Solutions to Provide Cloud Computing Services

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to approve resolution #21-160
MOVED: Andrew Pitsker
SECOND: Kelly Weller

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to approve Resolution #21-160.

Resolution #21-160: Resolution Authorizing a Microsoft Cloud Agreement with Tangent Solutions to Provide Cloud Computing Services

WHEREAS, the Township of Vernon ("Township") has a need for cloud computing services to store email communications; and

WHEREAS, Tangent Solutions currently provides the Township with email server and maintenance services; and

WHEREAS, Tangent Solutions has provided the Township with a proposed Microsoft Cloud Agreement to provide cloud storage for emails for a term of one year in the amount of $3,360.00; and

WHEREAS, a determination has been made that it is in the best interests of the Township to obtain these services from Tangent Solutions; and

WHEREAS, funds are available in the amount of $3,360.00 in Line Item 1-01-20-140-20 and

WHEREAS, the Township is acquiring these services directly and openly as a statutorily permitted contract pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 19:44A-20.5; and

WHEREAS, has completed and submitted a Business Entity Disclosure Certification which certifies that Tangent Solutions has not made any reportable contributions to the political or candidate committees listed in the Business Entity Disclosure Certification in the previous one year and Tangent Solutions will be prohibited from making any reportable contributions during the term of the contract; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:11-5(1) (dd), authorizes the Township to award a contract without public advertising if said contact is for goods and services to support or maintain proprietary computer hardware and software owned by the City.

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

  1. A contract is awarded to Tangent Solutions in a form similar to that attached hereto in an amount not to exceed $3360.00.
  2. The term of the contract shall be 7/1/2021 to 6/30/2022.
  3. The Business Entity Disclosure Certification shall be placed on file with this resolution.

Introduction/1st Reading of Proposed Ordinances

Ordinance #21-14: An Ordinance of the Township of Vernon, County of Sussex, State of New Jersey, Amending and Supplementing Chapter 250 of the Municipal Code of the Township of Vernon Entitled “Fees and Escrows” to Add Fees for Background Checks by the Vernon Police Department

Municipal Clerk Gianattasio read by title Ordinance #21-14.

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to introduce Ordinance #21-14.
MOVED: John Auberger
SECOND: Kelly Weller

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN: Auberger
ABSENT:
Motion passed to introduce Ordinance #21-14.

Ordinance #21-15: Capital Ordinance Providing for Various Improvements by the Township of Vernon, in the County of Sussex, New Jersey, Appropriating Therefore the Sum of $8,000.00 and providing that such Sum so Appropriated Shall be Raised from the Capital Improvement Fund of the Township

Council President Shortway read by title Ordinance #21-15.

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to introduce Ordinance #21-15.
MOVED: Andrew Pitsker
SECOND: John Auberger

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Auberger, Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN:
ABSENT:
Motion passed to introduce Ordinance #21-15.

Public Hearing/2nd Reading of Ordinance

Ordinance #21-13: Ordinance of the Township of Vernon, County of Sussex, State of New Jersey, to Amend and Supplement Chapter 5, Article XII, “Department of Public Safety” and to Repeal and Replace Chapter 52 of the Municipal Code of the Township of Vernon, “Fire Department” to Establish a Division of Fire Suppression

Council President Shortway read by title Ordinance #21-13

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to open public hearing for Ordinance #21-13.
MOVED: Kelly Weller
SECOND: Andrew Pitsker
All members were in favor.

Seeing no one wishing to come forward, Council President Shortway asked for a motion to close public hearing for Ordinance #21-13.
MOVED: John Auberger
SECOND: Toni Cilli
All members were in favor.

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to adopt Ordinance #21-13.
MOVED: Andrew Pitsker
SECOND: Kelly Weller

A roll call vote was taken:
AYES: Cilli, Pitsker, Weller, Shortway
NAYS:
ABSTAIN: Auberger
ABSENT:
Motion carried to adopt Ordinance #21-13.

Public Comments (Limited to 3 Minutes On Any Topic)

Council President Shortway asked for a motion to open the meeting for public comments.
MOTION: John Auberger
SECOND: Kelly Weller
All members were in favor.

Peg Distasi - Vernon Township, is in agreement with Council Members Cilli and Weller. She feels that we will be sending a mixed message to our youth if we allow the cannabis ordinance to go through. Ms. Distasi said what price do we sell out our youth by bringing in money to reduce our taxes by selling a drug. She is looking at this a protecting our youth and not as a business proposition.

Natalie Buccieri -Vernon Township, agrees with Council Members Cilli and Weller. She feels that this is not something we want in our town and it does not go with a family-oriented town. Ms. Buccieri mentioned the Vernon Coalition and said they would be opposed to have this in the town. The Vernon Coalition has a lot of data. Ms. Buccieri explained that the data showed that tax increases were not recognized because there is an increase in services such as EMS, drug counseling and police. Ms. Buccieri said just because something is legal does not mean it is moral. She does not want something in our town that can harm our community.

Ms. Buccieri requested that the Council go back to in-person meetings.

Jessi Paladini - Vernon Township, feels that the Mayor and Council used Clean Communities money to clean the illegal township dump. Ms. Paladini said she contacted the director of Clean Communities and she confirmed this. Ms. Paladini believes that what was removed from the site was the old hand in hand playground and that is township garbage and we need to put the money back into the Clean Communities fund.

Ms. Paladini also commented that the Beautification Committee gets more taxpayer funds than any other board of commission in our town with the exception of the Land Use Board. Ms. Paladini feels that the Beautification Committee should be doing meeting minutes.

Walter Marsico - Vernon Township, is curious why people have to go to the State to get the Council to do the right thing or get things fixed that have been done wrong. He feels that Mr. Westenberger should resign from his job because he has done several things wrong. Mr. Marsico is upset with Mr. Voelker and the Mayor and feels that he is not getting responses to emails and phone calls.

Seeing no other members of the public wishing to speak, Council President Shortway asked for a motion to close the meeting for public comments.
MOTION: John Auberger
SECOND: Kelly Weller
All members were in favor.

Mayor’s Comments

Mr. Council President and other Council members, I received a host of very positive comments from attendees at the VFW’s Memorial Day Ceremony, held at Veterans Memorial Park on May 31st.

These positive comments were not only about the ceremony, but also about the clean, beautiful condition of Vernon’s memorial to its veterans.

For this, our thanks and appreciation go to our Department of Public Works and the Beautification Committee.

I use my comments tonight to update the public on efforts that have been taken, and are being taken, by the Mayor and Council to ensure that this park which is dedicated in the honor of those who have served our nation in our U.S. Military, is reflective of the pride that we feel for them and in our town.

While much of the park activity in our town is at our Maple Grange Park, there are a host of other activities and events that take place at the town’s original park, Veterans Memorial Park, also known as "The Flats."

In addition to being the home of Vernon’s memorial to its veterans, this original and still very special park, is the host for a large number of significant Vernon activities

For example:

a. This park is the home of three baseball fields that are used by our town’s very successful leagues for Girls Softball, Little League Baseball, and Men’s Softball;

b. This park has a multipurpose field that’s actively used for Soccer and Football practices;

c. This park is the home of an active Horseshoe League; and ...

d. This park has a small children’s playground.

With the approximate 2% of our municipal budget that we have allocated for the care and maintenance of the municipality’s buildings and grounds, and our two parks, we have just completed an ADA compliant walking path that will connect the parking lots located on both ends of Veterans Memorial Park.

This eliminates a safety hazard for children, parents, and other visitors to the park, in that this ADA compliant walking path will allow them to walk from one end of the park to the other without having to risk the hazard of walking down County Highway 644.

The lights on the fields in this park are decades old, and they no longer meet municipal electrical safety standards. And therefore, we will be replacing these lights.

Because this park was built, in part, with Green Acres funds; and because wetlands issues at this park creates cost and compliance issues for the town in maintaining the bathrooms and snack bar facility in accordance with Green Acres’ standards, we will be providing portable bathrooms facilities, and renovating the snack bar/storage areas.

The Mayor and Council are also proud to announce that Cub Scout Pack 183 has adopted the grounds around the veterans’ memorial at this park as one of their areas of focus and cleanup, and will be joining with our Beautification Committee and our Department of Public Works in performing needed ground’s maintenance at this site.

In addition to ensuring that this special park reflects the pride that we feel for our veterans, our maintenance and upgrades to this park are part of the Mayor and Council’s ongoing efforts to Move Vernon Forward towards becoming an even more desirable town where individuals want to live and raise their families; and where businesses want to locate, prosper, provide our residents with services and conveniences that they want and need, and help our homeowners pay the tax bill for a cost effective and efficient municipal government.

Council Comments

Council Member Auberger commented that it was a really nice turnout from the public for the VFW for their services.

Council Member Auberger clarified that at the June 10, 2021 Special Town Hall meeting where the walking path and pump track were discussed, a rendering in a power point was shown of a pathway around the pond on the Fire Department property. This should be retracted because the town has never contacted the Fire Department and the Fire Department would not do anything with the dam integrity.

Council Member Weller had no comment.

Council Member Pitsker announced that the VTMUA who runs the operations for the sewer system had their 2020 audit and the review was completed with flying colors. We have an improvement in the fund balance. In 2019 we have $242,000 in our net possession and in 2020 that was doubled to $416,000. This gives us a net capital gains of $658,000. This is good because it helps us to start controlling the rates of our users. Council Member Pitsker gave a hat off the VTMUA Commissioners, Administration and the people in the field.

Council Member Cilli had no comment.

Council President Comments

Council President Shortway commented saying that he has an opportunity to go the Farmer’s Market and they are doing a great job. It has really grown and a lot of people are going to it.

Council President Shortway said that Memorial Day was a special day. The park means a lot to may of us and he loves the way it looks now. Council President Shortway told the Mayor he did a great job getting it ready.

Adjournment

There being no further items of business to be conducted on the agenda, a motion for adjournment was made by Council Member Auberger, seconded by Council Member Pitsker with all members voting in favor.

The Meeting of the Township Council of the Township of Vernon was adjourned at 8:14 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Marcy Gianattasio, RMC, CMR
Municipal Clerk

Minutes approved: June 28, 2021