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March 3, 2009

 

A Budget Meeting of the Township Council of the Township of Roxbury was held on March 3, 2009 at 1715 Route 46, Ledgewood, New Jersey at 7:30 PM.

 

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

 

OPEN PUBLIC MEETING STATEMENT

Notice is hereby given that a Special Meeting of the Township Council of the Township of Roxbury will be held on Tuesday, March 3, 2009 at 7:30 PM at 1715 Route 46, Ledgewood, New Jersey.  This meeting is being held for the purpose of discussing the 2009 Budget.

 

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 February 25, 2009; notice was posted on the bulletin board in the main hallway of the Municipal Building on February 25, 2009.

 

ROLL CALL:  Mayor Kathy DeFillippo, Deputy Mayor Jim Rilee, Councilmen Gary Behrens, Fred Hall, and Martin Schmidt

 

ALSO PRESENT:  Christopher Raths, Township Manager; Lisa Spring, Chief Financial Officer; Dave Stierli, Director of Parks and Recreation; Dave Ward, Building and Grounds Supervisor; and Janet Rieth, Township Deputy Clerk

 

Absent:  Councilmen Timothy Smith and Richard Zoschak

 

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

1).  2009 Capital Budget Department Review

a.  Buildings and Grounds

Ø      Window Replacement at Town Hall, 1715 Rt. 46 Ledgewood.  Mr. Raths distributed information about the estimated cost and energy savings regarding the proposal to replace the windows at Town Hall.  Mr. Schmidt stated that we should look at more economical alternatives.  Mr. Stierli, Director of Parks and Recreation, stated that the option of using Interior Storm Windows was explored and was not recommended by the contractor.  Mr. Raths suggested waiting for the recommendations that result from the completion of the Energy Audit before making any decisions.  Mr. Schmidt offered to investigate the price, efficiency and life expectancy of Interior Storm Windows for Council members to review.

Ø      Repairs at Port Morris Fire House.  Although this building is slotted to be torn down eventually, in order to ensure the safety of the structure, the following items are still being recommended at this time (at a cost of approximately $20,000):

o       Upper and lower roof repairs

o       Replacing of some of the windows

o       Painting

o       Sheet rocking of interior roof areas

o       Tile replacement

o       Upgrading of emergency lighting

In answer to a question from Deputy Mayor Rilee, Mr. Dave Ward, Buildings and Grounds Supervisor, advised the Council members that the building is still used for voting, Fire Department meetings and the storage of one fire truck and one boat.  Council members agreed that the work is necessary and support the funding as recommended.

 

b.  Parks and Recreation

Ø      “Imagination Station” Playground at Horseshoe Lake.  Mr. Raths discussed the revised estimated costs associated with repairs needed at “Imagination Station”.  The playground is scheduled for replacement in 2010.

 

 

Ø      Athletic Field designs and locations.  Mr. Raths advised that changes were made to the Athletic Field proposals to allow flexibility in the location since we do not know the timing of the acquisitions yet.  Council members stated that they want to see details on the use of revenue from the Recreation fees.

Ø      Repair of bridge at Horseshoe Lake.  Scheduled for this year.

Ø      Dredging of Horseshoe Lake in the swim lanes.  Necessary for safety reasons.

Ø      Lines Farm Environmental Center.  Mr. Schmidt discussed the costs associated with the “Community Garden” proposal:  fence, water lines, electricity, landscaping, new roof, and building repairs.  Discussion ensued regarding the items that could possibly be deferred to next year.  It was agreed that $10,000 would remain in this year’s budget for the “Community Garden” project.

 

2).  2009 Operating Budget: Buildings & Grounds / Parks & Recreation

a.  Overall review

Ø      Line Item Review of Budget.  Mr. Raths reviewed reasons for specific line items that have been increased or reduced since the last budget discussion.

Ø      Overtime Costs.  Mayor DeFillippo asked about the discrepancies from year to year in the overtime costs.  Mr. Raths stated that the higher overtime costs were due to the need for other employees to cover the duties for an employee who was out on disability for an extended time. 

Ø      Janitorial Supplies.  Mayor DeFillippo questioned the reasons for the decrease in the cost of janitorial supplies from previous years.  Mr. Raths stated that the savings were due to the spending freeze that was implemented in August of 2008.  Mr. Hall asked if the Township had actually gotten to a point where employees were purchasing cleaning products to be used at work.  Mr. Raths confirmed that the employees were purchasing items, such as soap and other cleaning supplies, during the spending freeze.

Ø      Pest Control.  Mayor DeFillippo asked for justification for the reduction in this line item since the actual amounts expended were higher in each previous year.  Mr. Raths stated that, since the Nutrition Center has relocated, the cost associated with pest control at the previous building has been eliminated.

Ø      On line registration service for Recreation Department.  Mayor DeFillippo asked about the reduction in the amount we are budgeting for this service.  Mr. Raths stated that the amounts we are being charged for merchant services have decreased.  Mr. Hall discussed the benefits to the public and to the staff of having this service.  Deputy Mayor Rilee stated that we should make sure that we do not lose money by offering merchant services and would like to get a copy of all the proposals.

Ø      Leisure Activities.  Revenue details and uses of those proceeds were discussed.

Ø      Recreation Program fees:  Mr. Hall stated that the monies derived from Recreation fees were intended for “building fields and expanding recreation facilities” and that the money cannot be used for any other purpose.  Mr. Hall stated that the Township needs to be able to clearly identify the exact amount of money that each sports Recreation program is bringing in, and exactly how that money is spent.  Mr. Raths stated that the budget does not currently separate the revenues and expenditures for the various sports Recreation programs by separate line item, but will work on amending it so that it shows up the way Mr. Hall is requesting.

Ø      Imagination Station:  Council members agreed that they would not use funds derived from either Recreation fees or Open Space Tax for Imagination Station because that was not the intended purpose of the money.  The funding for Imagination Station will come from general taxation.

Ø      Open Space Tax funds:  Council members agreed that Open Space Tax funds would not be used for the Imagination Station playground because those funds are solely designated for capital improvement of our recreation facilities.  Discussion ensued regarding the use of Open Space Tax funds for the creation of the Landing athletic fields and for the Community Garden project (Lines Farm property was originally purchased with Open Space Tax funds).

Ø      Park Maintenance.  Deputy Mayor Rilee asked what would offset the increase in this portion of the budget.  He stated that he does not support an increase in this area without detailed rationale explaining why we would retain part-time employees even though we will be outsourcing the maintenance of the detention basins.  Mr. Schmidt stated that he has felt that the department has been short-staffed for a long time.  Mr. Raths will obtain more quotes for the outsourcing of the detention basin maintenance to determine the competitiveness of the quote we have.

 

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

None

 

PUBLIC PORTION

No Public Present

 

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

None

 

COMMUNICATIONS

March 3, 2009

#1, Item T.  Interoffice Memo-School Busing Regulations

Mr. Hall asked if we are still awaiting a response from the JIF, the Township’s insurance carrier, regarding the request from the Board of Education for a list of “hazardous routes”.  Ms. Rieth stated that JIF should be responding within the week.  Council members want more information on the resolution that the Board of Education was proposing.  Members discussed the fact that the Board of Education has not discussed any of this with the Council and their concerns that some of the wording in the school’s Director of Transportation’s memo seemed to imply that the Council was not cooperating.

 

# 4  Correspondence from Colette Campbell, State Director-NJ Chapter for Americans for Prosperity, to Mayor and Council, dated February 26, 2009, re:  COAH Seminar scheduled for March 11, 2009

Mr. Raths verified that this item is in reference to the seminar for Russell Stern.

 

#5  Correspondence from Steven C. Levinson, Chairperson of the Rockaway River Watershed Cabinet, to Mayor and Council, dated February 19, 2009, re:  request for $1,500 contribution to the Rockaway River Watershed Cabinet for 2009

Mr. Schmidt asked about this.  Deputy Mayor Rilee stated that it would be discussed at a Budget Meeting only if it was in the previous budget; otherwise, it won’t even be brought up.

 

#6  Correspondence from Ella F. Filippone, Executive Director of the Passaic River Coalition, to Mayor and Council, dated February 19, 2009, re:  request for $125 contribution to the Passaic River Coalition for 2009

It was decided that the Township would not be contributing to this.

 

#23  Mayors Fax Advisory, dated February 23, 2009, re:  Legislative Alert:  S-2577 & A- 3772, “Concerning the Development of Non-Age Restricted Communities”

The Council members advised Deputy Mayor Rilee that this was discussed last week and had decided that the Township would first send a letter opposing this, and, then, follow-up with a Resolution in opposition of the proposed legislation.  Mr. Raths stated that the letter would be generated by the end of the week.

 

Deputy Mayor Rilee asked if there had been a discussion last week regarding the Communications of 2/20/09  #9  “Correspondence from the Roxbury Economic Development Committee, to Mayor and Council, dated February 17, 2009, re:  Recommendations Regarding the B-3 Planned Shopping Center District”.  Mayor DeFillippo advised that this was not discussed last week.  Mr. Raths stated that it will be on the next agenda under MATTERS REQUESTED/REFERRED BY COUNCIL MEMBERS, MANAGER, ATTORNEY OR CLERK”.

 

EXECUTIVE SESSION

None

 

ADJOURNMENT

At 9:50 PM, Deputy Mayor Rilee made a motion to adjourn the meeting.  Mr. Hall seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call:          All in Favor – Yes

 

Motion carried 5 to 0.

 

Submitted By:

 

 

________________________________

BettyLou DeCroce

Township Clerk

MINUTES APPROVED BY COUNCIL

DATE:                        April 14, 2009

ROLL CALL:            Mr. Rilee – yes Mr. Behrens – yes

                                    Mr. Hall – yes              Mr. Schmidt – yes

                                    Mr. Zoschak – abstain   Mayor DeFillippo - yes