M I N U T E S
October 23, 2001
Mayor Torre stated that the meeting complied with the Sunshine Law, adequate notice of this meeting having been made to all members of the Council by personal service on January 1, 2001 and transmitted to The Observer, The Record and The Herald News on January 1, 2001.
ROLL CALL: Present: Mayor William J. Torre, Councilman Andrew Link III, Councilman Herbert D. Heeren, Councilman Justin A. DiPisa, Councilman Garrett R. Pepe, Councilwoman Marlene Verrastro, Councilman John Wassberg
SALUTE TO THE FLAG AND PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE: Mayor Torre led in the Salute to the Flag and the Pledge of Allegiance.
The following correspondence has been received as of this date:
1. Permission to hold Halloween window painting contest.
2. Letter from the NJ Dept. of Community Affairs regarding Lead Poisoning Prevention Week, Oct. 21-27.
Item #1 was referred to the Police Department. Item #2 was referred to the Board of Health.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES: (September 11, 2001)
On a motion by Councilman Heeren, seconded by Councilman DiPisa, and unanimously carried, the foregoing Minutes were approved.
BE IT RESOLVED that the claims and accounts amounting to $1,456,374.87 specified in the schedule hereto annexed, having been examined and approved by the Finance Commissioner, or his Deputy, be paid and that warrants be issued therefore.
Signed Andrew Link
On a motion by Councilman DiPisa, seconded by Councilman Wassberg, and unanimously carried, the foregoing Resolution was adopted.
REPORT OF MAYOR:
Mayor Torre departed from the agenda by giving his report first. He began by giving a summary of the Building Committee and background on the temporary relocation of the Fire Department. He wanted to expunge any rumors and one sided arguments. Firstly, he assured the residents that according to the Boroughs insurance carrier, NJIIF, homeowners insurance would not increase if the Fire Department was relocated to Teterboro. Because of the lack of space in town, the fact that the Fire Department wanted to keep all equipment together, a location that was safe to residents, there were few locations available. The four sites considered were Central Avenue, Teterboro, property adjacent to the Swim Club parking lot and the practice field of the Athletic Field. Issues to be considered were response time, safety of fire members and residents, and equipment. He continued that the Swim Club was actively used all year long, the Athletic Field afforded little parking for fire members cars, plus ingress and egress with Route 17 jug handle right there, and Central Avenue was the Municipal Building construction site. Teterboro appeared to be the least risk, the fact that this was brought to the attention of the mayor and council by the fire chiefs, and seemed to be the best site. Because of the feedback, this site would be reconsidered. The only alternative would be to remain at Hamilton and the committee would reconsider this site by phasing the demolition and construction of both projects.
FINANCE, HEALTH AND SANITATION:
Commissioner Link read portions of a thank you letter from the Borough of Lodi for use of
the sweeper. The cleaning of sanitary sewer lines on approximately one half mile of Route
17 South had begun and should be done by this Saturday. He asked residents to refrain from
putting tree branches into the leave piles in the streets.
Commissioner Heeren reported that the welfare clients were now being handled by the County. There were 40 incoming calls to the director for the month of September, and return calls to county welfare, social security, Hackensack Medical Center, etc., seven interviews, three clients referred to county Welfare and several to social security. Food packages and coupons were distributed. Letters were received from United Way and Salvation Army providing aid to Sept. 11 victims families. Back to school kits for distribution were received that had been prepared by the Presbyterian Church in Wood-Ridge. The director attended one workshop. The board will be meeting on Oct. 29, and discussion will include food distribution for the holidays.
PARKS AND RECREATION:
Commissioner DiPisa reported all scheduled picnics have ended. The field was seeded and
fertilized. Colonial Lawn and Sprinkler will winterize the sprinkler system next week.
When the soccer season concludes, the restrooms will be winterized. Eagle Scout Scott
MacDonald, for his service project, will be adding to the walking path which will stretch
from Harrison to Roosevelt, with the DPW providing the materials.
STREETS AND TRANSPORTATION AND PUBLIC FACILITIES:
Under Streets and
Transportation, Commissioner Pepe gave the third quarter report on permits with one street
opening, 11 dumpster, 19 sidewalk, and one sanitary sewer connection with the total amount
POLICE AND LAND USE:
Under Land Use,
Councilwoman Verrastro reported 55 new permits, with the total value of construction at
$374,720. Four summons were issued for debris, garbage, steps and lawn maintenance, two
letters received, two letters answered, 16 inspections, violations were eight property
maintenance, four garbage/debris violations and police assistance was requested four
times. She continued that the Zoning Committee was to meet the next night to discuss
changes in Boulevard businesses regarding restaurants and cafes. She reminded residents to
not place garbage out at the curb before 7 p.m. or on weekends.
Commissioner Wassberg reported the hook and ladder was being repaired in Wisconsin. Additional repairs in the amount of $6,125 were needed as well. Total repairs amounted to $96,765, and work should be completed by February or March. The new pumper was ordered on September 28, with the cost at $448,603 and delivery is expected in May 2002. Tonights agenda includes an ordinance for the purchase of a new ambulance with a special legislative grant of $150,000. He also reported that the upgrade of radio equipment was funded through a special legislative grant of $364,000. He also encouraged residents to vote yes for LOSAP.
156. Authorizing Sale of Bond Anticipation Note
On a motion by Councilwoman Verrastro, seconded by Councilman DiPisa, and unanimously accepted, for foregoing Consent Agenda Resolutions were approved (copies attached).
Before the Resolutions were read Mayor Torre explained the reasoning behind Resolution No. 157 and the need to urge the county to consider a traffic light at this intersection.
157. Urging Bergen County to Provide a Traffic Light at the Intersection of Central Avenue and the Boulevard
158. Authorizing Award of Bid for Demolition of Three Buildings: 320 Boulevard, 322 Boulevard and 202 Madison Avenue
On a motion by Councilman Pepe, seconded by Councilwoman Verrastro, and unanimously accepted, the foregoing Resolutions were approved. (Copies attached)
ORDINANCES ON INTRODUCTION:
ORDINANCE NO. 1948:
BE IT RESOLVED that an ordinance entitled "AN ORDINANCE AUTHORIZING THE PURCHASE OF A NEW AMBULANCE FOR THE USE OF THE FIRE DEPARTMENT OF THE BOROUGH OF HASBROUCK HEIGHTS AND TO APPROPRIATE THE TOTAL SUM OF $150,000.00 PROVIDED BY A SPECIAL LEGISLATIVE GRANT TO ABIDE THE COST OF THE SAME" introduced this date be and the same is hereby passed on first reading and the Borough Clerk be directed to advertise notice of public hearing on said Ordinance to be held at the regular meeting of the Borough Council on November 13, 2001.
ORDINANCE NO. 1949:
BE IT RESOLVED that an ordinance entitled "AN ORDINANCE PURSUANT TO N.J.S.A. 40:48B-14 ET SEQ. TO AMEND AND SUPPLEMENT ARTICLE V ENTITLED "JOINT MUNICIPAL TAX ASSESSOR" OF CHAPTER 45 ENTITLED "OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES" OF THE CODE OF THE BOROUGH OF HASBROUCK HEIGHTS SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT THE OFFICE OF JOINT MUNICIPAL TAX ASSESSOR AS IS HITHERTO ESTABLISHED MAY ALSO SERVE THE TOWNSHIP OF ROCHELLE PARK UPON ITS ADOPTION OF THE NECESSARY ORDINANCE OR RESOLUTION CREATING THE SAME AND UPON ITS ENTRY INTO AN AGREEMENT OF CONDITIONS FOR THE OPERATION OF THE SAME WITH THIS BOROUGH AND THE TOWNSHIP OF SOUTH HACKENSACK" introduced this date be and the same is hereby passed on first reading and the Borough Clerk be directed to advertise notice of public hearing on said Ordinance to be held at the regular meeting of the Borough Council on November 13, 2001.
Before asking for a motion, Mayor Torre made several comments at this point to thank the legislature for their intercession in the awarding of grants including the ambulance, radio communications equipment and library which he was proud to report amounted to almost two million dollars.
On a motion by Councilman Wassberg, seconded by Councilman Heeren, and unanimously accepted, the foregoing Ordinances on Introduction were approved.
ORDINANCE(S) ON PUBLIC HEARING:
Mayor Torre opened the meeting to the public for anyone wishing to speak on Ordinance No. 1947.
ORDINANCE NO. 1947:
Ethel Ball, 113 Central Avenue, questioned the reasoning behind buying and running this type of equipment and the cost to tax payers and was told this was on a trial basis, this was an additional cleaning tool and would also be used for other special events.
Jack Ball, 113 Central Avenue, asked if shop owners would be taxed extra, and was told this was not to be used exclusively for the Boulevard. He also questioned the manpower to run the machine.
Patrick Vella, 147
Columbus Avenue, who is the property maintenance official, walks the Boulevard daily,
follows up on any concerns he sees, and that this is a constant problem.
BE IT RESOLVED that an Ordinance entitled "AN ORDINANCE TO APPROPRIATE THE SUM OF $28,000.00 TO PROVIDE FOR THE ACQUISITION OF A MOBILE LITTER VACUUM FOR THE USE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS OF THE BOROUGH OF HASBROUCK HEIGHTS AND FURTHER TO AUTHORIZE THE FINANCING OF THE COST THEREOF IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THE LOCAL BOND LAW BY THE ISSUANCE OF BONDS OR NOTES NOT TO EXCEED THE SUM OF $26,600.00" be now passed on second and final reading and the Borough Clerk be and hereby authorized and directed to publish said Ordinance, same to be published in The Observer, a newspaper circulating and published in the Borough of Hasbrouck Heights.
On a motion by Councilman DiPisa, seconded by Councilman Pepe, and unanimously accepted, the foregoing Ordinance on Public Hearing was approved.
MISCELLANEOUS FROM PUBLIC:
At this point, Mayor Torre invited anyone wishing to speak to please come forward.
Arthur Knobloch, 324 Hamilton Avenue, who is fire chief, reported that the entire fire department was present at tonights meeting, and that having met over the weekend wanted to let the mayor and council know they had deemed being in Teterboro would extend the response of the department, endanger the residents and property of Hasbrouck Heights due to the traffic on Terrace and the Boulevard in the high traffic hours, and the safety of female ambulance members going to an empty parking lot in the early morning hours. He was told every effort would be made to keep the Fire Department at Hamilton Avenue. The engineer and architect would be consulted.
Harold Jacobus, 420 La Salle Avenue, asked if the bottom of Ravine Avenue at the Board of Education property was considered, was told it had been considered and discussion of temporary buildings followed.
Audrey Maisch, 132 Division Avenue, was concerned with the response time and keeping the fire department in town, especially regarding the safety of school children..
Bettina Direse, 109 Franklin Avenue, regarding airport noise increasing, even on Sunday evening.
Elaine Adamkiewicz, 128 Oak Grove Avenue, who had a devastating fire in her home one month ago, speaking for two others who had devastating fires, pleading to keep the Fire Department in town.
Mayor Torre repeated that the Teterboro site had originally been recommended by the Fire Department.
Stan Rode, 109 Franklin Avenue, had a question regarding the airport, but upon hearing the other speakers regarding the fires, became adamant in keeping the Fire Department in town and response time. He also questioned the airport noise, bigger planes, and Councilwoman Verrastro told him about the Coalition for Teterboro Airport and the environmental study with more forthcoming. He was also given an update of resolutions opposing the airport. He was encouraged to call his legislative representatives.
Patricia Thomasey, 307 Franklin Avenue, questioning the Central Avenue site for the fire department, and asked if any thought had been given to building the public safety building first, and the municipal building later. She was told it had been considered, that there were some problems with the public safety building due to safety approvals which could delay the construction, and that the economic intent had been to build both simultaneously and that losing grant monies was also a factor and locking into bonding rates. She asked it was 22 months since the fire, why plans were not more progressed. She went on record to say that if the fire department was moved to Teterboro, the lives of her son and husband were at stake.
Robert Salerno, 129 Columbus Avenue, questioned if the mileage to Teterboro and response time had been investigated.
Patricia Godfrey, 225 Boulevard, a pedestrian, questioned the Green Street versus coming across Route 46.
Elaine Adamkiewicz, worked at Teterboro Airport for three years, has been diagnosed with chronic bronchitis, and was advised by her physician to find another job. She also said the noise was something that should be addressed environmentally.
Robert Thomasey, 307 Franklin Avenue, First Assistant Chief, said that 22 months ago and still today, they are doing it wrong, that by not placing the Fire Department on Central Avenue then and now, the lives of the community are in jeopardy. He questioned the construction project, that he had placed Teterboro on a list with other places which were not investigated, and that in four minutes time the Adamkiewicz home had been destroyed. He was told the list of sites had been looked into, that over the 22 months they had listened and considered suggestions from all departments. Dialogue went back and forth regarding construction plans, what had transpired over the past 22 months, etc.
Theresa Errig, 333 Raymond Street, asked why the fire department wasnt the first priority, and was told they were.
Christian Semenecz, 415 Jefferson Avenue, said that no member of the council was showing the fire department any respect, that they were inept in not having the public safety complex done by now, and that they were jeopardizing response time. He was told that it could not have moved any faster than this with state safety approvals, changes to be updated, with the plans going to the state.
Brian Foley, 7 Franklin Avenue, questioned breaking ground in December and was told there was no reason why it couldnt commence in December. If the fire department was to remain on Hamilton, where was he going to park his car and was told this had all been discussed previously.
There being no further business to be conducted by the Mayor and Council, the meeting was adjourned.
I, ROSE MARIE SEES, Borough Clerk of the Borough of Hasbrouck Heights, do hereby certify that the foregoing Minutes are to the best of my knowledge a true account of the Regular Meeting held on October 23, 2001.
Rose Marie Sees, RMC