Meeting Agendas & Minutes

Regular Council Meeting Minutes 11/10/11

Minutes of the Conference Meeting of the Borough Council held November 10, 2011, at 7:41 p.m. in the Council Chambers, Borough Hall, 531 Speedwell Avenue, Morris Plains, New Jersey.

Mayor Druetzler called the meeting to order and read the following notice:

I HEREBY ANNOUNCE AND STATE THAT ADEQUATE NOTICE OF THIS MEETING WAS PROVIDED BY VIRTUE OF A RESOLUTION SCHEDULING THE TIME, DATE, AND PLACE OF MEETINGS OF THE BOROUGH COUNCIL OF THE BOROUGH OF MORRIS PLAINS FOR THE YEAR 2011; WHICH RESOLUTION WAS ADOPTED BY THE BOROUGH COUNCIL ON JANUARY 6TH 2011, AND WAS PUBLISHED IN THE MORRIS NEWSBEE AND IN THE DAILY RECORD AND BY THE FORWARDING OF SUCH RESOLUTION TO ALL PERSONS ON THE REQUEST LIST; BY THE POSTING OF SUCH RESOLUTION ON THE BULLETIN BOARD IN THE BOROUGH HALL; ALL OF THE ABOVE ACTIONS BEING IN ACCORDANCE WITH N.J.S.A. 10:4-6, ET SEQ.

Present on Roll Call: Mayor Frank J. Druetzler

Council President Suzanne B. McCluskey

Councilmembers: George J. Coogan

               Laurie J. Fu

               Jason C. Karr

               Roman Zabihach

Absent: Councilmember Joseph Cecala, Jr.

Also Present: Gail Fraser, Esq., Borough Attorney

DISCUSSION ITEMS

Mayor Druetzler advised that Councilmember Cecala is not present this evening as he is still recuperating from a serious infection, however, he is making progress.

Mayor Druetzler presented Councilmembers Zabihach, Fu and Karr with their official pins.

Mayor Druetzler discussed capital projects for 2012, including repaving Forest Drive and Park Road, and installing sidewalk on Littleton Road, Dayton Road and Mountain Way. The State Grant for Watnong Drive is pending, however, we plan on including the sidewalk from the bridge to Cutler. A decision on the grant will be made by the end of January.

Councilmember Karr advised that Sheryl McNichol completed the first tax collection course at the Police Academy and is waiting for the results.

Councilmember Fu advised that she and Finance Officer David Banks will be meeting with DonJon regarding the recycling bin for electronics.

Councilmember Zabihach advised that most of the electricity has been reestablished as of Sunday, November 6, 2011. Chase Bank experienced some additional problems with wires, which has been corrected. Mayor and Councilmembers discussed different methods of tree and branch removal. It was the consensus of the Governing Body to contact JCP&L and provide them with a list so that they can complete safeguarding the wires.

Councilmember Coogan added that the Department of Public Works has been picking up debris with their front loader and dumping it on property at Greystone, with the County’s consent. Mayor and Councilmembers complimented the DPW for doing a great job.

Mayor Druetzler advised that Leon Hall, Borough Engineer, will not be present this evening as he has a previous commitment.

Mayor Druetzler invited Matt Lombardi to come forward to discuss his school assignment. Matt stated that he is taking a State and Local Government Class and will be writing a paper on how attending a meeting has changed his perspective of local government. Mayor and Councilmembers provided Matt with a summary of their responsibilities.

Councilmember Coogan added that he has seen a difference in our electric bills this year as compared to last year, indicating that the bills are $1,500 less.

EXECUTIVE SESSION

Moved by Councilmember Coogan:

BE IT RESOLVED THAT Resolution No. 2011-120 entitled, "Executive Session" be adopted.

Seconded by Councilmember Zabihach. So ordered.

Councilmember Karr moved to adjourn the meeting at 7:58 p.m.

Seconded by Councilmember Zabihach. So moved.

_____________________________

Frank J. Druetzler, Mayor

June R. Uhrin, Borough Clerk

Minutes of the Regular Meeting of the Borough Council held on November 10, 2011, at 8:32 p.m. in the Council Chambers, Borough Hall, 531 Speedwell Avenue, Morris Plains, New Jersey.

Pledge of Allegiance and Prayer.

Mayor Druetzler called the meeting to order and read the following notice:

I HEREBY ANNOUNCE AND STATE THAT ADEQUATE NOTICE OF THIS MEETING WAS PROVIDED BY VIRTUE OF A RESOLUTION SCHEDULING THE TIME, DATE, AND PLACE OF MEETINGS OF THE BOROUGH COUNCIL OF THE BOROUGH OF MORRIS PLAINS FOR THE YEAR 2011; WHICH RESOLUTION WAS ADOPTED BY THE BOROUGH COUNCIL ON JANUARY 6TH 2011, AND WAS PUBLISHED IN THE MORRIS NEWSBEE AND IN THE DAILY RECORD AND BY THE FORWARDING OF SUCH RESOLUTION TO ALL PERSONS ON THE REQUEST LIST; BY THE POSTING OF SUCH RESOLUTION ON THE BULLETIN BOARD IN THE BOROUGH HALL; ALL OF THE ABOVE ACTIONS BEING IN ACCORDANCE WITH N.J.S.A. 10:4-6, ET SEQ.

Present on Roll Call: Mayor Frank J. Druetzler

Council President Suzanne B. McCluskey

Councilmembers: George J. Coogan

               Laurie J. Fu

              Jason C. Karr

              Roman Zabihach

Absent: Councilmember Joseph Cecala, Jr.

Also Present: Gail Fraser, Esq., Borough Attorney

Mayor Druetzler advised that Councilmember Cecala is not present this evening as he is still recuperating from a serious infection, however, he is making progress.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

Councilmember McCluskey moved:

BE IT RESOLVED that the minutes of the Executive, Conference and Regular Meeting of October 6, 2011 be approved.

Seconded by Councilmember Zabihach. All in favor.

Councilmember McCluskey moved:

BE IT RESOLVED that the minutes of the Executive, Conference and Regular Meeting of October 20, 2011 be approved.

Seconded by Councilmember Coogan. All in favor.

APPROVAL OF CONSENT CALENDAR

BE IT RESOLVED by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Morris Plains, that the attached reports be accepted and that said reports be kept on file in the Clerk’s Office:

REPORTS

Fire Prevention, October 2011

Police Department, October 2011

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED

THAT Resolution No. 2011-121 entitled, "TRANSFER OF FUNDS," be adopted as attached. THAT Resolution No. 2011-122 entitled, "A RESOLUTION OF SUPPORT AND CONCURRENCE TO THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A "NO PASSING ZONE" ON ROUTE 53 IN THE BOROUGH OF MORRIS PLAINS, NEW JERSEY BY THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION," be adopted as attached. THAT Resolution No. 2011-123 entitled, "RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE AWARD OF A NON-FAIR AND OPEN CONTRACT FOR PROFESSIONAL PLANNING BOARD COUNSEL SERVICES," be adopted as attached.

THAT Resolution No. 2011-124 entitled, "RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE AWARD OF A NON-FAIR AND OPEN CONTRACT FOR PROFESSIONAL BOARD OF ADJUSTMENT COUNSEL SERVICES," be adopted as attached. THAT Resolution No. 2011-125 entitled,

"RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE AWARD OF A NON-FAIR AND OPEN CONTRACT FOR PROFESSIONAL LEGAL SERVICES," be adopted as attached. THAT Resolution No. 2011-126 entitled, "RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE AWARD OF A NON-FAIR AND OPEN CONTRACT FOR PROFESSIONAL APPRAISER SERVICES," be adopted as attached.

THAT the Borough Council approve the membership application of Steven C. Windt, 6 Whitebirch Drive, Morris Township NJ, as a member of the Morris Plains Junior Fire Auxiliary.

THAT the Morristown High School Senior Class, Project Graduation, be granted permission to solicit donations on Saturday, November 19th 2011, in the Merchant Block, from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM.

THAT Maria Bevacqia, be hired as a part time Violations Clerk, for Municipal Court at an hourly rate of $16.00, effective October 18th 2011.

THAT Lisa Conover, be hired as a part time Violations Clerk, for Municipal Court at an hourly rate of $16.00, effective November 11th 2011.

THAT the Mayor and Clerk be and they are hereby authorized to execute an Agreement with Fredric M. Knapp, Esq., Knapp, Trimboli & Prusinowski, LLC for 2012 Special Labor Counsel services.

THAT the Mayor and Clerk be and they are hereby authorized to execute the Agreement with Thomas Olson, Esq., McKirdy and Riskin for 2012 Special Tax Counsel services.

THAT the Mayor and Clerk be and they are hereby authorized to execute the Agreement with Elizabeth VanNess for 2012 Youth Counseling services.

THAT the Mayor and Clerk be and they are hereby authorized to execute the Agreement with Joe North, Norton Conservation Company, Inc. for 2012 Environmental services.

THAT the Mayor and Clerk be and they are hereby authorized to execute the Agreement with Kenneth Werner, DVM, for the annual Animal Rabies Clinic to be held Saturday, January 14th 2012.THAT Marjorie McEntee, 15 Morris Plains Avenue, be hired as a substitute Crossing Guard for the Police Department effective November 14th 2011, at a daily rate of $70.00.

THAT Gerald Rota, 18H Foxwood Drive, be hired as a substitute Crossing Guard for the Police Department effective November 14th 2011, at a daily rate of $70.00.

THAT the Borough Council authorize the release and return of the 2-year Maintenance Bond to Johnson & Johnson, per the Borough Engineer’s correspondence dated November 8th 2011.

THAT the Borough Council authorize the release and return of the Stabilization Maintenance Bond to Johnson & Johnson, per the Borough Engineer’s correspondence dated November 8th 2011.

THAT the Borough Council authorize the release and return of the $3,000 Cash Maintenance Bond to Keystone Property Group, per the Borough Engineer’s correspondence dated November 9th 2011.THAT the Borough Council authorize the release and return of the $1,000 Replacement Fee to RT Environmental Services, Inc, per the Borough Engineer’s correspondence dated November 9th 2011.

Mayor Druetzler advised that the Consent Calendar contains routine business.

Mayor Druetzler added that Leon Hall, Borough Engineer, will not be present this evening as he has prior commitment.

Mayor Druetzler reminded that tomorrow is Veteran’s Day and there will be a service at the VFW.

Seconded by Councilmember Zabihach.

Yeas: Councilmembers McCluskey, Coogan, Fu, Karr & Zabihach

Nays: None

Abstain: None

Absent: Councilmember Cecala

GREETING OF PUBLIC AND INVITATION FOR DISCUSSION

Mayor Druetzler opened the meeting to the public. Seeing no one, Mayor Druetzler closed the public hearing.

REPORTS OF COMMITTEES AND/OR DEPARTMENT HEADS

Finance

Councilmember Karr advised that the State Health Benefits Program is holding their annual Open Enrollment for plan year 2012. Most employees stayed with their existing plans.

Councilmember Karr stated that there were no major difficulties at the polls for this past General Election. He thanked everyone for their work.

Public Safety

Chief Thompson provided a report on Public Safety and Police Department activities.

Chief Scott Thompson advised that the Police Department participated in a program entitled "Operation Take Back" on Saturday, October 29, 2011 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. This was a joint effort with the Prosecutor’s Office in conjunction with Wells Fargo Bank. They collected 94 lbs of unwanted prescription drugs.

Chief Thompson stated that he will be meeting with FEMA regarding Hurricane Irene and he will have a better idea of what funds we can get thereafter. He has not heard anything to date on Tropical Storm Irene.

Chief Thompson stated that the Police Department has done a few motor vehicle enforcement details the last couple of weeks resulting in quite a few cell phone and speeding tickets.

Chief Thompson advised that he has been in contact with the e-ticket vendor, who is very happy with the progress being made.

Chief Thompson said deer cull totals include 40 deer; 10 male through the cull; five male through midge bites; one male by car crash; 20 females through deer cull, and four by midge bites.

Chief Thompson advised that the second round of interviews for the Police Officer hiring process will continue next week.

Public Works

Councilmember Coogan stated that the Fire Department responded to approximately 80 calls in a day and a half during the recent snow storm; they usually get approximately 300 calls annually. The Fire Department worked closely with the Department of Public Works and helped cut the trees in the roadways so the Department of Public Works could plow. Don Geary, 1st Assistant Fire Chief, helped eliminate potential danger with fallen wires.

Councilmember Coogan stated that the Department of Public Works has received assistance from the County, as they have been given permission to bring storm related debris to County property at Greystone. The DPW has rented a chipper and Sal Cortese offered his chipper to assist in the clean up. One round of leaf collection was done; however, it was discontinued so that attention could be given to removing brush from the roadways. It is hopeful that by Saturday, November 12, 2011, one round of the town will be completed. A second round will be done thereafter, and leaf collection will resume mid to late next week. The DPW workers have worked ten days straight on the brush.

Councilmember Coogan advised that the Department of Public Works had to repair the platforms at the Recycling Center again. The MUA trucks cause the damage when they pick up the recycling.

Councilmember Coogan added that this past summer, the municipal building’s lighting was replaced, a new air conditioner unit installed, and controllers were put in the boiler room through an energy grant from the State. A month-to-month comparison indicates a $1,500 drop in one month. He will prepare a year-to-year comparison. Another grant is pending for the Department of Public Works Building.

Public Buildings & Grounds

Councilmember McCluskey stated the Bon Fire held on Saturday, October 22, 2011 was a success. The Borough was fortunate to be able to hold the Halloween Parade on Halloween considering the snow storm two days prior. We were one of the few communities who did not cancel the holiday.

Councilmember McCluskey advised that the two Radio City Christmas Show trips are sold out for November 19, 2011. The Recreation Commission will offer a program in January and February 2012 entitled "Kids in the Kitchen." There will be a Ginger Bread contest on December 2, 2011 at the Community Center. Adult Basketball will be held on Thursday evenings from 8:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. and Adult Soccer on Wednesday evenings from 8:30 to 10:00 p.m. at Borough School.

Councilmember McCluskey stated that the Morris Plains Basketball Association has begun, and will be at the Community Center three evenings per week, as well as Mountain Way and Borough Schools.

Councilmember McCluskey advised that the Community Center was open after the snow storm as a warming center and a place to recharge electronics.

Public Welfare, Sanitation & Sewers

Councilmember Fu stated that the Teen Center had 107 attendees at the ice skating event at Mennen Arena on November 4, 2011 and enjoyed the live DJ. Another ice skating event will be scheduled for February 3, 2012. Other events coming up are Black Out Dance, at the Community Center and all grades are invited on November 18, 2011, and an 8th grade house event on December 2, 2011. The next Teen Center Board will not meet in December, but will meet on January 3, 2012.

Councilmember Fu advised the Board of Health met last night, November 9, 2011 and reviewed Wellness Day that was held on Saturday, October 15, 2011. There were 62 blood screening participants, up from 47 last year. Credit for the rise in numbers was given to advertising. A total of 207 flu shots were given out during both clinics. They are preparing for the Rabies Clinic in January 2012.

Councilmember Fu stated that Municipal Alliance will meet on November 21, 2011.

Councilmember Fu stated the annual MUA Awards Dinner, organized by Penny Jones, was held on November 4, 2011. Valerie Bai, a high school student from Morris Plains, was recognized for participating in the Slam Dunk the Junk contest.

Councilmember Fu advised that the Sustainable New Jersey Committee will meet on November 29, 2011. A $1,000 Capacity Building Grant was received and we will be recognized at the League of Municipalities Convention.

Ordinance & Public Utilities

Councilmember Zabihach stated that the Ordinance Committee will continue to review the fee changes requested. The Committee will also be addressing JCP&L’s response during the snow storm. Councilmember Zabihach acknowledged the Police, Fire and Road Departments did a stellar job.

Councilmember Zabihach stated that the Planning Board will meet on Monday, November 21, 2011 and will have a full agenda.

PRESENTATION OF COMMUNICATION, PETITIONS, ETC.

Mayor Druetzler opened the meeting to the public. Hearing no one, Mayor Druetzler closed the public portion.

ORDINANCES OF FIRST READING

Councilmember Zabihach introduced the following ordinance and read the same by title and moved that it be passed on first reading.

ORDINANCE #_14-2011__

BOND ORDINANCE PROVIDING FOR THE IMPROVEMENT OF SUN VALLEY WAY AND LAUREL STREET IN AND BY THE BOROUGH OF MORRIS PLAINS, IN THE COUNTY OF MORRIS, NEW JERSEY, APPROPRIATING $260,000 THEREFOR AND AUTHORIZING THE ISSUANCE OF $50,000 BONDS OR NOTES OF THE BOROUGH FOR FINANCING SUCH APPROPRIATION.

Councilmember McCluskey seconded the motion.

Mayor Druetzler stated this Ordinance represents a grant we received from the State in the amount of $200,000 to work on the roads.

Yeas: Councilmembers McCluskey, Coogan, Fu, Karr & Zabihach

Nays: None

Abstain: None

Absent: Councilmember Cecala

Thereupon, Councilmember Zabihach offered the following resolution:

WHEREAS, the above ordinance was introduced and read by title at this meeting on November 10, 2011 and passed on first reading.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED at a meeting to be held on December 1, 2011 at 8:30 P.M. prevailing time in the Municipal Building in the said Borough, this Council will further consider for second reading and final passage of said ordinance.

AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Clerk of this Borough be and she is hereby directed to publish the proper notice therefore, including the ordinance, post the ordinance on the Bulletin Board in the Municipal Building and make copies available to members of the general public.

Councilmember McCluskey seconded the resolution. All in favor.

Councilmember Zabihach introduced the following ordinance and read the same by title and moved that it be passed on first reading.

ORDINANCE #_15-2011__

AN ORDINANCE CONCERNING COMPENSATION FOR FIRE INSPECTORS OF THE BOROUGH OF MORRIS PLAINS

Councilmember Coogan seconded the motion.

Mayor Druetzler stated this Ordinance sets the compensation for the Fire Inspectors.

Yeas: Councilmembers McCluskey, Coogan, Fu, Karr & Zabihach

Nays: None

Abstain: None

Absent: Councilmember Cecala

Thereupon, Councilmember Zabihach offered the following resolution:

WHEREAS, the above ordinance was introduced and read by title at this meeting on November 10, 2011 and passed on first reading.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED at a meeting to be held on December 1, 2011 at 8:30 P.M. prevailing time in the Municipal Building in the said Borough, this Council will further consider for second reading and final passage of said ordinance.

AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Clerk of this Borough be and she is hereby directed to publish the proper notice therefore, including the ordinance, post the ordinance on the Bulletin Board in the Municipal Building and make copies available to members of the general public.

Councilmember Karr seconded the resolution. All in favor.

Councilmember Zabihach introduced the following ordinance and read the same by title and moved that it be passed on first reading.

ORDINANCE NO. 16 -2011

AN ORDINANCE CONCERNING SALARIES AND LONGEVITY PAY

Councilmember Coogan seconded the motion.

Mayor Druetzler stated this Ordinance sets the compensation for non-union employees.

Yeas: Councilmembers McCluskey, Coogan, Fu, Karr & Zabihach

Nays: None

Abstain: None

Absent: Councilmember Cecala

Thereupon, Councilmember Zabihach offered the following resolution:

WHEREAS, the above ordinance was introduced and read by title at this meeting on November 10, 2011 and passed on first reading.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED at a meeting to be held on December 1, 2011 at 8:30 P.M. prevailing time in the Municipal Building in the said Borough, this Council will further consider for second reading and final passage of said ordinance.

AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Clerk of this Borough be and she is hereby directed to publish the proper notice therefore, including the ordinance, post the ordinance on the Bulletin Board in the Municipal Building and make copies available to members of the general public.

Councilmember Karr seconded the resolution. All in favor.

ORDINANCES ON SECOND READING

None.

RESOLUTIONS

None.

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

None.

NEW BUSINESS

None.

VOUCHERS

Councilmember Karr moved:

BE IT RESOLVED that the following vouchers for November 2011 be approved.

Seconded by Councilmember Zabihach.

Yeas: Councilmembers Karr, Coogan, Fu, McCluskey and Zabihach

Nays: None

Absent: Councilmember Cecala

Abstain: None

Councilmember Karr moved to adjourn the meeting at 9:08 p.m.

Seconded by Councilmember McCluskey. So moved.

Frank J. Druetzler, Mayor

_____________________________

June R. Uhrin, Borough Clerk