Monthly Archives for February 2017

Electronic Waste Recycling Day

Posted: February 25, 2017

The Sussex County Municipal Utilities Authority (SCMUA) will be conducting an electronic waste recycling event on Saturday, March 18, 2017 from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at its facilities located at 34 South Route 94 in Lafayette. This program is available to Sussex County residents, businesses, school districts and municipalities.

According to the SCMUA, it holds this type of disposal event to keep hazardous materials and heavy metals such as lead, mercury, nickel and cadmium—commonly found in household electronics—from polluting our environment.

Examples of acceptable e-waste items:

  • computers
  • monitors
  • laptops
  • computer peripherals such as keyboards and mice
  • fax machines
  • VCRs
  • DVD & CD players
  • copiers
  • printers
  • televisions
  • radios
  • stereo equipment
  • cell phones

Residents may bring up to five electronic items for disposal free of charge per vehicle. For larger quantities, please consult the SCMUA website or contact them at 973.579.6998.

Congressman Opens Office at Municipal Building

Posted: February 22, 2017

Congressman Josh Gottheimer is opening a satellite office at the Vernon municipal building. The official ribbon-cutting ceremony, to which the public is invited, will take place on Saturday, February 25, 2017 at 11:00 a.m.

The Vernon satellite office will operate for residents of surrounding municipalities, connecting constituents to trained caseworkers and advocates who will help them navigate the federal government. The constituent service center can provide assistance on issues ranging from veterans’ benefits, Social Security and Medicare, to visa and passport issues, taxes, healthcare, and federal grant applications.

The office will be open on Tuesdays from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

The congressman has also opened an office in Newton at 93 Spring Street, Suite 408, as well as offices in Hackensack, Washington Borough and Ringwood.

Financial Analysis of Vernon’s Sanitary Utility System Now Available

Posted: February 17, 2017

Independent consultant Remington & Vernick Engineers was retained to review Vernon’s sanitary utility system from a financial perspective. The analysis was conducted for a 10-year period beginning in 2017 and ending in 2027. To assist the township in determining the viable future of the VTMUA, three different scenarios were examined by the consultant.

View the analysis 

A presentation on the matter, including a question and answer session, will be held on an as-yet-to-be-determined date. To submit questions and/or comments, e-mail .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this e-mail address).

Nominate a Vernon Resident for Senior of the Year

Posted: February 16, 2017

The Vernon Township Department of Recreation and Community Development is accepting nominations for 2017 Vernon Township Senior Citizen of the Year. A senior citizen will be selected from submissions and the winner will be announced at the annual senior luncheon in May.

Nominees must meet eligibility requirements which include the following:

  • minimum five year Vernon residency
  • contributed services that benefited our community and surrounding areas
  • cannot be a township employee or member of the Vernon Township Senior Citizens Committee

To nominate a deserving senior, download, complete and return our fillable nomination form  via mail, fax or e-mail. Nominations are due by April 7, 2017.

Vernon seniors interested in attending the luncheon may sign-up at the Vernon Senior Center on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 between the hours of 10:00 am. and 12:00 noon. No reservations will be accepted after this date. Proof of residency must be provided at the time of sign-up. The cost to attend is $10.00 per person.

Have questions or need more information? Contact Jane Damstra at 973.764.5454.

Project Self-Sufficiency Offering Free Mammograms

Posted: February 6, 2017

Project Self-Sufficiency is offering free mammograms to women age 40+ who are uninsured/underinsured on Thursday, February 23, 2017 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at St. Francis de Sales Church in Vernon.

Sussex County has the highest rate of late-stage diagnoses of breast cancer in the entire state and we are attempting to make early detection as easy as possible for all women, even if you don’t have insurance.

Please call 973.940.3500 to determine your eligibility and schedule an appointment.

Press Release from Mayor Shortway About Legends

Posted: February 1, 2017

In February 2016, Vernon Township became aware of numerous zoning and code violations in the Legends building. Those violations placed the residents in danger and were caused solely by the inaction and negligence of the property owners.

The township contacted the property owners in an effort to protect vulnerable residents, and the property owners ignored the township officials. In August 2016, the township served the property owners with a first Notice of Violation in Order to Correct for failure to comply with the township’s zoning and other code provisions.

The property owners did nothing to protect the welfare of the residents or adhere to township codes. A second Notice of Violation in Order to Correct was issued in September 2016 with no action taken by the owners.

The township had no choice but to enforce its codes for the safety of its residents and in December 2016 the township issued 5 summonses for the zoning violations for which they had received two prior zoning violation notices.

The summonses were served on the owners of Legends and it was up to them as to which five residents of the building would have to vacate. Those summonses are pending before the court for disposition. The township chose to only issue five summonses so fewer residents would be inconvenienced, however, the township will move forward with issuing more summonses once the disposition of the first five are finalized.

In November 2016, the township adopted Ordinance 16-24 to protect residents in situations like that in the Legends building. The ordinance requires owners to pay relocation assistance equal to six times a tenant’s monthly rent or up to $10,000 when a tenant is evicted due to the owner’s own negligence in failing to meet the minimum standards contained in the zoning, property maintenance, or construction codes.

In 1999, the same owners petitioned the township to change the property’s zoning to allow long-term tenancy but they did not succeed. Now, they are openly and blatantly violating those zoning restrictions by renting to long-term residents.

The property owners in the Legends building have had a year to address the safety and other violations in the building. Many of the tenants are living in units without proper kitchens and are cooking on hot plates, which has created numerous electrical issues and other fire hazard concerns. In addition, the township was notified by the maintenance manager that some tenants were using washing machines in the units that discharged water into the bathtubs which caused overflow situations in which water spilled onto the floor in the units and the hallways.

The township issued ten first Notices of Violation and Order to Correct in February of 2016 and second Notices of Violation and Order to Correct for same ten fire code violations in June. A third Notice of Violation and Order to Correct is currently pending.

Instead of acting in everyone’s interest to abate the safety hazards, the owners sat idly by, collected rent checks from, in many cases, individuals and families receiving disability and other public assistance, and jeopardized the health and safety of the building’s residents.

Simply stated, the living conditions in Legends are in violation of township zoning and state fire codes and the township is merely enforcing these codes to protect its residents by relocating them.

It is time for the owners to correct any outstanding safety violations and provide relocation assistance so its residents can find safe, permanent residences.

Harry J. Shortway, Mayor
Vernon Township