View Other Items in this Archive | View All Archives | Printable Version

February 20, 2007

 

A Workshop Meeting of the Township Council of the Township of Roxbury was held on February 20, 2007 at 1715 Route 46, Ledgewood, New Jersey at 7:30 PM.

 

OPEN PUBLIC MEETING STATEMENT

Adequate notice of this meeting of the Township Council of the Township of Roxbury was given as required by the Open Public Meetings act as follows:  Notice was faxed to the Daily Record, the Newark Star Ledger and the Roxbury Register on January 5, 2007; notice was posted on the bulletin board in the main hallway of the Municipal Building on January 5, 2007.

 

ROLL CALL  (Present):  Councilwoman Kathy DeFillippo, Councilmen Fred Hall,  Martin Schmidt, Tim Smith, Richard Zoschak and Mayor John Ciaramella

 

Also Present:  Christopher Raths, Township Manager; Anthony Bucco, Township Attorney and Janet Rieth, Deputy Township Clerk

 

Absent:  Councilman Jim Rilee

 

REPORTS OF COUNCIL LIAISON REPRESENTATIVES, COUNCIL COMMITTEES AND NEW BUSINESS/OLD BUSINESS

Mayor Ciaramella amended the Agenda to discuss the Social Services Department Budget

Mayor Ciaramella read the following statement:

 

“It is very important that the public understand that it was never the intent of this Council to shut down Social Services.  This was simply a rumor without substance.  It is very unfortunate that this incited so many Roxbury residents and it was simply not true and, frankly, we are going to deal with this issue right now.  At this time I would like Chris Raths to please comment on this issue.”

 

Mr. Raths stated that the Township takes opportunities to look at ways of saving money. Over the last nine years the Township has eliminated 9 positions, saved the taxpayers approximately $500,000.00, or $200.00  per year for the property owners of the Township.  As he advised Council previously and after a thorough review of the Social Services Department and meeting with the Township Clergy Council, Department Heads, Mrs. Gruen, Frank Grisi, Council members and citizens, Mr. Raths stated that he  is not recommending the elimination of the part time position.  He does recommend that the position be filled as soon as possible.

 

Mr. Hall made a motion to keep the Roxbury Social Services in tact and immediately start the process to replace Mrs. Gruen and, where possible, augment the Department with assistance that may be available from other agencies or the community that would improve upon the services that the Township is providing to those most in need in Roxbury.  Mr. Zoschak seconded the motion.

 

Mr. Smith stated that he is in agreement.  He further stated that  everything  the Township has attempted to do in cost reduction in other areas has been  possible because technology has allowed the work to be done without a human.  The Social Services Department cannot be run that way.

 

Mr. Zoschak stated that it is sad to see Gail  retiring and we will all miss her.

 

Mrs. DeFillippo stated that she is in agreement that the Township never intended for Social Services to be disbanded.  Council was just looking to see if the Township could  improve on services that are already provided.

 

Mr. Schmidt stated that he has worked with Gail on a number of projects and has come to appreciate what she does for the people in the Township and he is totally in support of retaining the Social Services Department.

 

Mayor Ciaramella feels that we will see improvements with Social Services through the next few years.

 

Roll Call:

Mr. Hall – yes              Mr. Zoschak – yes

Mrs. DeFillippo – yes   Mr. Schmidt – yes

Mr. Smith – yes            Mayor Ciaramella – yes

 

Motion carried 6 - 0

 

Mayor Ciaramella amended the Agenda to the Public Portion

Mrs. Adams, 33 Mt. Road, Ledgewood, stated that everything that has been said is sketchy and she questioned how long  it will it take to hire someone to fill Gail Gruen’s position.  Mr. Raths stated that the Township will advertise, take applications and hopefully be able to hire someone in 3-4 weeks. 

 

Robert Kluska, Emmans Road, stated that there was discussion at the last meeting pertaining to an  $800,000 expenditure for new field development and asked what it is for.  Mr. Hall stated that there are 1600 acres of open space in Roxbury, but only 50 acres are being utilized for recreational purposes. The Recreational Master Plan shows that the Township is short 8 to 10 fields for sports for the kids. Mr. Hall further stated that the Township is trying to get fields that are basically maintenance free and we are looking at turf options.  The Township is looking at shared services with the Board of Education for the high school field and it would be used for all recreational purposes.  Mayor Ciaramella stated that the decision for the turf field has not been made between the Board of Education and the Township. There is extensive financial review that must take place. Mr. Smith stated that he has requested that Mr. Hall  look at the cost of new fields developed as grass, the possibility of people committing to help fund the turf field, the cost of maintaining a regular field versus a turf field and how many fewer turf fields would the Township need than grass fields.  Mr. Hall advised that the Township will be soliciting local business to help keep the costs down.  Mr. Kluska stated that many seniors are being forced to leave Roxbury because of the increase in taxes and this new field would add to the increase.

 

Kim Synelovski, 4 East Circuit Drive, Succasunna, asked if there is a tax discount for seniors.  Mr. Raths advised that there is a State program for seniors who are in need. He further advised that the Recreation Department charges fees for their  programs that help cover a significant portion of the costs.  Mrs. DeFillippo stated that the Township is exploring the possibility of residents making a donation to Recreation when they register for programs.  Mr. Schmidt stated that this system is already in place.

 

Tamara Brown, Randolph, stated that she is appreciative that the Township has decided to retain the Social Services Department.  She asked if the Township is  aware, environmentally, of what turf can do versus regular grass.  Mr. Raths stated that we do know the drainage system that is needed for run off. He further stated that with the turf field there would be no need for herbicides, pesticides or fertilizer. 

 

Ed Kirchgessner, 27 Honeyman Drive, Succasunna, stated that the people who built recreation in Roxbury are the ones who could be driven out of town. 

 

Frank Harold, 43 Flanders Drakestown Road, Mt. Olive, spoke in support of Gail Gruen and the Social Services Department.

 

Ed Kirchgessner, 27 Honeyman Drive, Succasunna, stated that even though Board of Education helps financially with the fields, it still comes out of taxpayers’ pockets.

 

Charles Alpaugh, Eyland Avenue, Succasunna, stated the he supports the work of Social Services.

 

At 8:05 PM Council took a short break.

At 8:15 Pm Council returned to the Workshop Meeting.

 

Mayor Ciaramella amended the Agenda to discuss the Health Dept Budget

Health Dept Budget

Mr. Raths advised that the Township has entered into shared services contract with Mine Hill Township, with no additional personnel necessary.  This has brought $44,210 of revenue to Roxbury Township.

 

Mr. Raths advised that there is an 8% increase in the Health Department budget, with the bulk of this being salaries.

 

Account No. 205 – Health Programs

Mr. Grisi advised that the additional $1,000 is to purchase flu vaccines. The Township does get reimbursed by Medicare Part B to offset the expenditure.  Mr. Grisi will look into the possibility of not using the State contract for the vaccine. 

 

Account No. 206 - Professional Dues increase

Mr. Grisi advised that there are mandated recertifications for employees that are due this year.

 

Account No. 241 – Golub Contract, Cat Impound Services

Mr. Grisi advised that he met with Sheriff Rochford regarding a County impound facility, which is part of the County shared services. 

 

Account No. 242 – Morris Regional Public Health Partnership

The contributed amount is not mandated.  Council agreed to leave the amount at $1,000.

 

Dog Trust Fund

Mr. Bucco has prepared an Ordinance to raise the Township fees for dog licensing.  Mr. Grisi will provide Mr. Bucco with the new amount.

 

Account No. 208 FICA Contribution

Council agreed to cut this account by $1,000 to $2,400.

 

Account No. 219  Material  & Supplies

Council agreed to cut this to $2,800. 

 

Department of Public Works and the Library budgets will be discussed at the next Budget Meeting.

 

Presentation: 

Russ Stern, Planning

Overview of proposed Highland – Draft Master Plan

 

Mr. Zoschak questioned if there is any way the Township could start a class action lawsuit against the State of New Jersey for changing the COAH rules.  Mr. Bucco stated that there is not. Mr. Raths advised that the Township is drafting a letter to the Department of Community Affairs regarding moving forward with our contributions to East Orange and 133 Landing Road.

 

Mr. Stern, Township Planner, gave an overview of the Draft Master Plan and answered questions from Council.  Mr. Stern advised that the public comment period has been extended to April 2nd.  Regarding map changes, Mr. Stern stated that, if the Council agrees, the Township should pursue the land use map changes now.  The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection will base their permitting opinions upon the protection zones.

 

Regarding the land use capability area map, Mr. Bucco advised that there will be an opportunity for the Township to go to the Highlands Council to have the map changed to reflect what we had under the State plan.  As a result of that, if the Township is able to get the Highlands Council to change the map, then we will not have problems with the DEP.

 

The Township will respond to the two areas (Hercules Tract and Dell Avenue area) through the technical and parcel data reports as requested by the Highlands Councils and draft a letter indicating that we do not believe those are the proper designations for these two areas.  A copy of Mr. Stern’s report will be included with the letter. 

 

Mr. Bucco stated that the Township has been approached regarding the Eden Lane Development and this issue needs to be addressed.  Mr. Raths stated that there may be an exception since they had their permits in place at about the same time as the Highlands Council was formed.

 

At this time, Mayor Ciaramella opened the meeting to the public for their comments.

 

Tom Hunsberger, Hercules, Inc., stated that, pertaining to the Hercules property, there is PA2 and PA5. He questioned if it would make a difference to make the whole area PA2.  Mr. Stern stated that there are ridge lines and areas that are not desirable for development.  Mr. Bucco stated that we want to be consistent with the planning that has been done in making our recommendation to keep credibility in order to obtain the corrections that we are requesting.

 

At this time, Mr. Smith left the meeting.

 

 New Business:

 A.  Social Services Department – 2007 Budget – Previously Discussed

 B.  Health Department –Previously Discussed

 

Old Business

Procurement Policy – Mr. Bucco is working on this.

 

PUBLIC PORTION – Previously discussed

 

MATTERS REQUESTED/REFERRED BY COUNCIL MEMBERS, MANAGER, ATTORNEY OR CLERK 

A.         Social Affair Permit request by St. Therese Home School Association for    Dinner Party on March 31, 2007 from 5 to 11:30 pm

 

B.         A request from Mr. Rallo to name the Street Subdivision of Sheep Meadow Farms “Shepherds Lane”

 

Mr. Schmidt made a motion to approve Items A & B.  Mr. Zoschak seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call:

Mr. Schmidt – yes (Abstain on Item A) Mr. Zoschak – yes

Mrs. DeFillippo – yes                                       Mr. Hall – yes (Abstain on Item A)

Mayor Ciaramella – yes

 

Motion carried 5 – 0 with 2 abstentions on Item A

 

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

October 24, 2006 - Executive Session – Hold

January 9, 2007 - Regular Meeting

January 23, 2007 - Executive Session

January 31, 2007 - Neighborhood Meeting

 

Mr. Schmidt made a motion to approve the Minutes of January 9, 2007, Regular meeting; January 23, 2007, Executive Session and January 31, 2007, Neighborhood Meeting.  Mr. Hall seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call:

Mr. Schmidt – yes                    Mr. Hall – yes

Mrs. DeFillippo – yes              

Mr. Zoschak – yes (abstain on January 23rd and January 31st)

Mayor Ciaramella – yes

 

Motion carried 5 – 0 with one abstention on January 23rd and January 31st

 

DRAFT ORDINANCES FOR DISCUSSION

None

 

INTRODUCTION OF PROPOSED ORDINANCES

None

 

HEARING AND ADOPTION OF ORDINANCES ON SECOND READING

None

 

DRAFT RESOLUTION FOR DISCUSSION

None

 

INTRODUCTION AND ADOPTION OF RESOLUTIONS

07-74    A resolution incorporating by reference herein and approving the following

numbered resolutions listed on the workshop council meeting agenda for this date: 07-75, 07-76, 07-77, 07-78, 07-79, 07-80, 07-81, 07-82, 07-83, 07-84, 07-85

 

Mr. Zoschak made a motion to adopt Resolution 07-74.  Mr. Schmidt seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call:

Mr. Zoschak – yes       Mr. Schmidt – yes

Mrs. DeFillippo – yes (recuse on check #42925)

Mr. Hall – yes              Mayor Ciaramella – yes

 

Motion carried 5 – 0 with one recusal on check #42925

 

07-75   A resolution authorizing the release of the performance guarantee of Ledgewood

Management, LLC for the preliminary site plan location on Rt. 46, 6502, Lot 1,2.

 

07-76   A resolution authorizing refund of unused escrow monies previously deposited

with the Township of Roxbury for development matters pursuant to Chapter XIII (land use) of the revised general ordinances of the Township of Roxbury

 

07-77   A resolution authorizing the execution of a right-of-entry agreement between the W.W.R.M. Partnership and The Township of Roxbury for access to block 10101, Lots 13 and 23 (The McNEAR Property)

 

07-78   A Resolution authorizing the Acceptance of a Maintenance Agreement and

Approving the release of the Final Payment to Pave-King, Inc., Kenvil, New Jersey for the 412 Mount Arlington Boulevard Drainage Improvement Project

 

07-79   A resolution authorizing the refund of Sewer Utility Overpayment

 

07-80   A resolution supporting State Funding for Lake Musconetcong Weed Harvesting

 

07-81   A resolution of the Township of Roxbury opposing A-3857 and S-2451 which, if

enacted, would eliminate RCAs as a tool to facilitate municipal compliance with Mount Laurel

 

07-82   A resolution authorizing the refund of taxes

 

07-83   A Resolution authorizing the Refund of Unused Engineering Inspection Fees to

            Atkins Roxbury Associates, L.L.C. for Roxbury Commons Project

Howard Boulevard, Block 12201, Lots 1.1 & 1.4

 

07-84   A resolution in support of the establishment of the permanent source of funding

 for Lake Hopatcong Commission

 

07-85   A resolution authorizing payment of bills

 

COMMUNICATIONS

February 16, 2007

#1 – Correspondence from Christopher Raths, to Mayor/Council, dated February 16, 2007, re: Information Update – (#8) Horseshoe Lake Entrance – This will be brought to Council at the next meeting.

 

#4 – Memorandum from Ptl. Gregg Prendergast, to Christopher Raths, dated February 6, 2007, re: Route 206 Motor Vehicle Accidents – Excellent Report.  Mr. Raths will follow up with Mt. Olive Township and the DOT.

 

#5 – Correspondence from Pinnacle Wireless, To Roxbury Township Administrator, re: Acquisition of Warner Communications – Mr. Raths will schedule a meeting with Pinnacle and the Fire Department.

 

#6 – Resolution from Lake Hopatcong Commission, re: Request to Include Construction for Lake Hopatcong Commission on List of Proposed Projects Financed Through 2006 Public Question Two – A Resolution Supporting this will be on the next Agenda.

 

#10 – Mayors Fax Advisory from NJLM, dated February 9, 2007, re: I – Documentation of COAH Plan Costs, II – Unused Sick Leave and Dual Office Holding, III – Levy Cap Information (A-1/S-20, as passed by Legislature) – Mr. Raths will respond regarding I – Documentation of COAH Plan Costs.

 

EXECUTIVE SESSION

07-86   A resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Roxbury, in the County

of Morris, New Jersey, authorizing conference of the Township Council with the public excluded

 

Mr. Schmidt made a motion to adopt Resolution 07-86 for Executive Session.  Mrs. DeFillippo seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call:

Mr. Schmidt – yes        Mrs. DeFillippo – yes

Mr. Hall – yes              Mr. Zoschak – yes      

Mayor Ciaramella – yes

 

Motion carried 5 – 0

 

ADJOURNMENT

At 10:00 PM Mrs. DeFillippo made a motion to adjourn the Workshop Meeting.  Mr. Schmidt seconded the motion.

 

All In Favor – yes

 

Submitted By:

 

 _____________________________________

BettyLou DeCroce

Township Clerk

MINUTES APPROVED BY COUNCIL

DATE:                        August 14, 2007

ROLL CALL:            Mr. Schmidt – yes        Mrs. DeFillippo – yes

                                    Mr. Hall – yes              Mr. Rilee – abstain

                                    Mr. Smith – yes            Mayor Ciaramella - yes