Mt. Olive Township Council Minutes
January 6, 2004

The Reorganization Meeting of the Mount Olive Township Council was called to Order at 7:30 pm by Council President Guenther with the Pledge of Allegiance.

MOMENT OF REFLECTION in recognition of the men and women fighting terrorism and those who have lost their lives defending the freedom we all enjoy

Open Public Meetings Law Announcement

According to the Open Public Meetings Act, adequate notice of this meeting has been given to the Daily Record. Notice has been posted at the Municipal Building, 204 Flanders-Drakestown Road Mount Olive Township, New Jersey and notices were sent to those requesting the same.

Swearing In: Mayor Richard DeLaRoche
Councilman James Buell
Councilman Robert Elms
Councilwoman Colleen Labow

I, Richard DeLaRoche, James Buell, Robert Elms, and Colleen Labow do solemnly swear that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of New Jersey, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same and to the Governments established in the United States and in this State, under the Authority of the people; and that I will faithfully, impartially and justly perform all the duties of the Office of Mt. Olive Township Councilman/Woman according to the best of my ability. So help me God.

Roll Call of 2004 Council:

Present: Mr. Buell, Mrs. Labow, Mr. Elms, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Greenbaum, Mr. Perkins, Mr. Guenther
Absent: None

Election of 2004 Council President

Mr. Perkins nominated Steve Rattner, Mr. Greenbaum seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

Mr. Guenther: I guess that kicks me out of here, right?

New Council President Takes Chair

President Rattner: I just wish to thank my colleagues for this honor and I will work to be fair and open and we hope to have an open and we hope to have a very productive year. I also want to thank my wife and daughter in the front row, I thank you. Somebody to my left who reminds me of that every time and that is why I always remember to mention that. Thank you very much. Next on the Agenda is the election of the Council Vice President.

Election of 2004 Council Vice-President

Mr. Guenther nominated Robert Greenbaum. Mr. Perkins seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Any other nominations?

Mrs. Labow nominated Bob Elms for Vice President. Mr. Buell seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Any other nominations? Seeing none, we’ll close the nominations and since the first nomination was Mr. Greenbaum, we’ll take a Roll Call vote on Mr. Greenbaum for Vice President.

Mr. Greenbaum, Mr. Perkins, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Guenther voted yes.
Mr. Buell, Mrs. Labow, Mr. Elms voted no.

President Rattner: Mr. Greenbaum is our new Vice President.

New Council Vice-President Takes Chair

Invocation – Pastor Robert Mitchell

Pastor Robert Mitchell: I’ll just read to you this evening a little passage from the Old Testament prophet, Mica. “You have been told old man what is good and what the Lord requires of you. Only to do the right in to love goodness, and to walk humble with your God. We come here this evening as people willing to serve our community with humility, may we always know that humility that we experience through service. May we know it in the way we reach out to the elderly. May we know it in the way we walk with our young. May we know it in the way we come to our places of workship, may we know it in the way we live with our families. May we know it in the way we pray for our military, and may we know it in the way that God has brought us here. May that humility be our word throughout this new year, and as new people have joined our Township as a Governing Body, may we bond as one in being humble service of God and we pray through the God we believe in. Amen. I wish you all a lot of luck and best in the end.

Council: Thank you.

President Rattner: Mrs. Labow, do you have a list of different people, I just want to make sure I recognize in the audience who have come different distance to see different public officials who are here tonight. Lew Candura, long time resident, sometime candidate and executive director of the Morris County Democratic party, we have Paul Bangiola, former County Chair, and Diane Weeks, Chair for Mendham. Moving right along, we have an open space presentation for Charlene Miller given by Laura Szwak of the Open Space Committee.

Presentation to Charlene Miller – Open Space Committee

Laura Szwak, Open Space Committee: This is the Open Space Committee so far of Mount Olive Township and the Open Space Committee has been in existence since 1997 and Charlene Miller has been the founding member behind this committee and behind the drive to preserve Open Space for this many years. Her legacy includes a continuous buffer of Green Space on the north side of Budd Lake, 200 acres that extends Turkey Brook Park, a 67 acre farm off Stephens State Park Road, and coming up 600 acres above Budd Lake, but the crown jewel that would not be in Mount Olive without Charlene’s vision and inspiration is Turkey Brook Park. We should all give her a big pat on the back because we are going to enjoy that park and that land forever. This is your legacy because when you come back to visit us which I hope you will, those places will still be there, it will still be filled with families enjoying the great outdoors, it will still be full of those natural things, birds, plants, animals that you love and they are preserved forever because of Charlene, your vision and your work. So we wanted to at least let you know of our great appreciation. I have always called you the environmental conscience of Mount Olive, so we are going to try to carry on that legacy and we look forward to working with the Council to continue this legacy. But we have this plaque, it says the Township of Mount Olive Open Space Advisory Committee awards this certificate of appreciation to Charlene Miller for outstanding community service to preserve Mount Olive natural lands. 1996 – 2003, the land you help preserve will remain a part of Mount Olive landscape forever. Thank you. It’s got a picture of Myers pond, which is in Turkey Brook Park, 267 Parkland Acres Preserved 1996.

President Rattner: We have given Mrs. Miller some awards and plaques recently, but there was one that we haven’t given that was just a certificate in honor of your dedicated service to the Township of Mt. Olive for the past eight years. 1996-2003 presented on this 6th day of January 2004 by the Council of Mount Olive Township, Morris County, NJ. We are going to miss you, your point of view, and everything that you brought to this Council. I know you are going to be moving out west and doing something that you really love which is going back and I guess instructing on your heritage, right?

Charlene Miller: I just want to say thank you. I am going to miss Mount Olive. I’m coming back to visit my grandchildren and I will take them to Turkey Brook Park.

President Rattner: Okay, I have been advised that there are more people trying to get in tonight so is there a way that we can move so that more people can fit in the room?

Mr. Elms: Hopefully the Fire Marshall is not here.

President Rattner: The Fire Marshall is in the back. 250 is the occupancy for the room, I don’t know how they figured that out. I just want to acknowledge other people that are in the audience. We have former Councilmen, Bill Sohl, & David Scapicchio. We have Don Rutledge, former member of the Mount Olive Board of Education, we have two current members of the Board of Education, Tony Strillacci and Daniel Amianda, and I believe we have Don Hill from our Board of Adjustment. We are still finding people in this crowd, Judy Johnson, also from the Board of Education. Hopefully we didn’t miss anybody, if we do notice you during the meeting, we will make sure to acknowledge you.
Now we come to the part of the agenda where we have the appointment that they Mayor makes with advice and President Rattner (cont’d): consent of the Council. Mayor, I guess I’ll put up the names one at a time?

Mayor De Le Roche: You could go ahead do that.

President Rattner: Okay, I will read them from the list.


a. Mayor's Appointments with Advice & Consent of Council

Public Defender, Marshall Gates, 1 year term expires 12/31/04

Mr. Elms moved for approval of the Public Defender, Marshall Gates, 1 year term expires 12/31/04. Mrs. Labow seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Council Discussion? Seeing none.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

Township Attorney, Garofalo & Pryor, 1 year term expires 12/31/04

Mrs. Labow: What am I supposed to say?

President Rattner: So moved. You’ll get the hang of it.

Mrs. Labow made a motion to approve the Township Attorney, Garofalo & Pryor, 1 year term expires 12/31/04. Mr. Elms seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Council Discussion? Seeing none.

ROLL CALL: Defeated – Mr. Rattner, Mr. Greenbaum, Mr. Guenther and Mr. Perkins Voted No and Mr. Buell, Mrs. Labow and Mr. Elms Voted yes.

President Rattner: With three affirmative votes, I declare at this point John Dorsey is a carryover as Township Attorney.

Mr. Elms: Under what authority Steve?

Mayor DeLaRoche: How did you conclude from that, that he is the carryover?

President Rattner: Based on the way that we evaluated the law. Also with the opinion we have from the attorney from the League of Municipalities. I happen to know that is scheduled for court tomorrow morning. So I imagine that if we are wrong, it will be decided at that time.

Mayor DeLaRoche: Just as long as you note on the record my objection to it.

President Rattner: So noted.

Mr. Elms: I would like to make an objection too. His contract expired on 12/21/03 according to his written and signed contract and therefore, if he is working pro bono tonight, fine.

President Rattner: Also noted.

Prosecutor, Paul Bangiola, 1 year term expires 12/31/04

Mr. Buell made a motion to approve Prosecutor, Paul Bangiola, 1 year term expires 12/31/04. Mrs. Labow second the motion.

President Rattner: Council Discussion? Seeing none.

ROLL CALL: Defeated Mr. Guenther, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Perkins, & Mr. Greenbaum each voted no. Mr. Buell, Mrs. Labow and Mr. Elms each voted yes.

President Rattner: With three affirmative votes, I declare at this point Brian Mason, our current prosecutor is a carryover at this time.

Mayor DeLaRoche: Continued objection to that. One does not necessarily follow from the other.

President Rattner: So noted.

Township Consulting Engineer, Schoor DePalma, 2 year term expires 12/31/05

Mrs. Labow made a motion to approve the Township Consulting Engineer, Schoor DePalma, 2 year term expires 12/31/05. Mr. Buell seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Council Discussion? Seeing none.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

Business Administrator, William Ruggierio, 4 year term expires 12/31/07

Mr Buell: Made a motion to approve Business Administrator, William Ruggierio, to a 4 year term which expires 12/31/07. Mrs. Labow seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Council Discussion?

Mr. Perkins: I would like to make a motion that we table this, at this particular time. The full council has not had the opportunity to adequately interview the candidate. On of them was out of town, it would be unfair for him not to be involved in this process.

Mr. Perkins made a motion to table the appointment of the Business Administrator. Mr. Greenbaum seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed to Table. Mr. Greenbaum, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Guenther, and Mr. Perkins voted yes and Mr. Elms, Mrs. Labow and Mr. Buell voted no.

President Rattner: Okay, so this is effectively tabled.

Township Planner, 4 year term expires 12/31/07
Director of Health, 4 year term expires 12/31/07
Finance Director/CFO, 4 year term expires 12/31/07
Tax Collector, 4 year term
Director of Public Works, 4 year term expires 12/31/07

President Rattner: For the Township Planner, Director of Health, Finance Director/CFO, Tax Collector and Director of Public Works, at this time you don’t have names, is that correct?

Mayor DeLaRoche: That is correct.

Mr. Elms: I would like to make a motion to put on the Mayor’s appointments, three positions that are supposed to be there. There are two positions that should be on the Mayor’s appointments with advice and consent, that’s the Court Administrator and the auditor.

Mr. Dorsey: The Auditor is clearly the appointment soley of the Council because the statute specifically provides that the appointing authority is the one that controls money and that is….

Audience: We can’t hear.

Mr. Dorsey: The position of Auditor is not one in which the Mayor plays any role, the position of Auditor is an appointment by the Council in accordance with the applicable statute. Does someone from the Council wish to move the name of the Auditor. I don’t know why we are out of sync here.

President Rattner: That’s because we are at the Mayor appointments and they wanted to put on couple more Mayor’s appointments.

Mr. Dorsey: But it is a Council appointment.

President Rattner: So I will not accept that motion at this time because it is our belief that it does not conform with the applicable State Statutes.

Mayor DeLaRoche: Though I suggest you seek advice of the Board’s Council. They are in the audience if you would like to speak to them.

Mr. Dorsey: I think you are out of order sir.

Mayor DeLaRoche: So noted.

President Rattner: This is a Council Meeting. I believe that under any way of looking at law, I run the meeting, it is not where we are going to have a debate on law, because I don’t think it could be answered here, furthermore, I am satisfied that we are meeting the requirements of the law and we are conforming with all applicable state statutes and with that I am ruling that is out of order at this point and I will continue forward, there are remedies that can be taken if you think that I am wrong. So with that, I will move on to the next Mayor Appointment, that’s with Advice and consent of the Council, and that is to the Library Board.

Library Board

Colleen Labow made a motion to approve David Jones, to the Library Board for a 5 year term which expires 12/31/08. Mr. Guenther seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Council discussion? Seeing none.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously.

Pride Committee

Mrs. Labow made a motion to approve Anthony White, to the Pride Committee to 3 year term expires which 12/31/06. Mr. Elms seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously.

b. Council Appointments

All Subcommittees of the Township Council previously created are extended through 2004:

Budget/Audit Control Committee – Jim Buell & Steve Rattner, 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Library Board Liaison, Colleen Labow1 year term expires 12/31/04
Board of Adjustment Liaison, Ray Perkins, 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Recreation Board Liaison, Bob Elms, 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Board of Education Liaison, Steve Rattner & Jim Buell, 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Safety Committee Liaison, Bernie Guenther, 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Planning Board, Rob Greenbaum, Councilmember, Class III, 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Pride Committee Liaison, Colleen Labow, 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Legislative Committee, Bob Elms, 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Committee RE: Lake/Environment Issues, Steve Rattner, 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Community Development Revenue Sharing Committee, Steve Rattner,1 year term expires 12/31/04
Township Clerk, Lisa Lashway, 3 year term expires 12/31/06
Court Administrator, Jennifer Gentilucci, 2 year term expires 12/31/05
Auditor, Gary Higgins, 2 year term expires 12/31/05

Mr. Perkins made a motion to approve the Council Appointments as listed above. Mr. Greenbaum seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Council discussion?

Mr. Elms: I don’t have a problem with the Court Administrator, but I believe that is a Mayor’s Appointment as I said before.

President Rattner: That has been noted.

Mr. Elms: Also, the Auditor I believe is a Mayor’s appointment.

President Rattner: That has been so noted too. Thank you very much, if there is not further discussion.

ROLL CALL: Passed. Mr. Elms voted no.

Crossing Guards
Theresa Petrocelli - 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Cathy Wallwork - 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Lisa Jopp - 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Maria Masini - 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Donna Hickey - 1 year term expires 12/31/04

Mr. Perkins made a motion to approve the Council Appointments as listed above. Mr. Guenther seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

Board of Adjustment
Don Hill, 4 year term expires 12/31/07
Mark Williams, 4 year term expires 12/31/07
Anthony Ranieri, 4 year term expires 12/31/07
Russ Tepper, Alt. I, 2 year term expires 12/31/05

Mr. Buell made a motion to nominate Glenn Novola, Richard Escobar, Joe McNaughton, and Jim Schiess as the Alternate.

President Rattner: The way I think we will handle this is that we will take it in order of the nominations being made. We have the first set of four; Don Hill, Mark Williams, Anthony Ranieri, and Russ Tepper. We will take a motion, see how the vote goes and see if we need a second vote. So with that do I have a motion for those.

Mr. Greenbaum made a motion to approve the Council Appointments as originally listed above. Mr. Guenther seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Is there any discussion?

Mr. Elms: Yes there is. I believe that this ought to be tabled just like the other was tabled because we have not had an opportunity to review their resumes and meet with them.

President Rattner: You could make the motion.

Mr. Elms made a motion to table the list of original appointments as listed for the Board of Adjustment. Mrs. Labow seconded the motion.

ROLL CALL: Defeated. Mr. Buell, Mrs. Labow and Mr. Elms each voted yes.

President Rattner: Now have the original motion that has been moved and seconded for Mr. Hill, Mr. Williams, Mr. Ranieri and Mr. Temper.

ROLL CALL: Passed. Mr. Buell, Mrs. Labow and Mr. Elms each voted no.

Board of Health
Bernie Guenther, Chairman, 2 year term expires 12/31/05
Steve Abrams, 3 year term expires 12/31/06
Chen Ya Huang, 3 year term expires 12/31/06
Eugene Terrezza, 3 year term expires 12/31/06

Mr. Perkins made a motion to approve the Council Appointments as listed above. Mr. Greenbaum seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Council discussion?

Mr. Buell: I would like to make a motion to nominate Mr. Alvin Melvega to replace Eugene Terrezza. Mrs. Labow seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Again, we have five candidates for four spots so we will take the first four, which would be Guenther, Abrams, Huang, and Terrezza, and ask for a vote. Is there any discussion?

Mrs. Labow: Could I ask a question?

President Rattner: You can ask a question.

Mrs. Labow: Wouldn’t you want to take each one separately instead of the whole group.

President Rattner: We could do that. Do you request we do each one differently?

Mrs. Labow: Please.

President Rattner: Okay, I will honor that request. The first one is required to be an elected official, so the name that is up is Mr. Guenther. Roll on Mr. Guenther.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Rattner: Next is Steve Abrams, 3 year term which expires 12/31/06.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Rattner: Next is Chen Ya Huang, 3 year term which expires 12/31/06.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Rattner: Last is Eugene Terrezza, 3 year term which expires 12/31/06.

ROLL CALL: Passed. Mr. Guenther, Mr. Rattner, Mr. Perkins, & Mr. Greenbaum each voted Yes. Mr. Buell, Mrs. Labow and Mr. Elms each voted no..

President Rattner: That means for the fifth candidate, there is no vote.

Open Space Committee
Council Liaison, Bob Elms, term expires 12/31/07
Chip Woltz, 3 year term expires 12/31/06

Mr. Perkins made a motion to approve the Open Space Appointments as listed above. Mr. Guenther seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Council discussion?

Mr. Elms: It would have been nice if I was asked before I got put on the Agenda, but that is alright.

President Rattner: You can refuse to serve.

ROLL CALL: Passed unanimously

Ethics Committee
vacant, 5 year term expires 12/31/08
R. Scott Urbach, 5 year term expires 12/31/08
Pat Maselli, 5 year term expires 12/31/08

President Rattner: We still are looking for one vacant term and we have two other names, these are prescribed by law and based on party and so on. So the names at the current time for two of the three open spots which expire 12/31/08 will be Mr. Urbach and Pat Maselli.

Mr. Greenbaum made a motion to approve the Ethics Appointment as listed above. Mr. Guenther seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Council Discussion?

Mr. Guenther: What is the vacant spot? What is that assigned to? A particular party, or a citizen at large?

Mrs. Lashway: Non-republican. Independent or Democrat. I have an advertisement that is going into the Chronicle. For any interested parties send a resume.

Mrs. Labow: I thought the spot that was filed was republican before, did somebody switch parties, that made it now a non-republican.

Mrs. Lashway: After the appointments were made, two of the appointments who were non affiliated, afilliated themselves with the republican party. So it overload the board with Republican members.

Mrs. Labow: At that time that they changed their party and you had more Republicans than you were supposed to have, weren’t they supposed to resign from the committee?

Mr. Dorsey: I don’t think the ordinance provides for that resolution.

Mrs. Labow: Yes it does.

Mr. Dorsey: Well if it does then they should have.

Mrs. Labow: It specifically says that in the selection criteria.

Mrs. Lashway: It wasn’t until I went through the appointments that were up that I checked their parties and I realized they had affiliated with the Republican party.

Mrs. Labow: In the selection criteria as the Town Ordinance says in the State Statute, it is by political makeup and if someone does change parties, they are supposed to notify, it should be made clear to any of the members of the ethics committee if they do choose to change party, they certainly can, but then they have to resign their position and it has to be filled with whatever party they were.

Mr. Guenther: When did they change that affiliation?

President Rattner: There is nothing we could do about that today, but I believe that the Ethics Committee came up with by laws and I think we have to make sure that will be included so that every member understands exactly what their roles and responsibilities are.

Mr. Elms: The two names that you have up there; would you like to tell us which parties they are associated with?

Mrs. Lashway: Pat Maselli is Democrat and Scott Urbach I believe is Republican.

Mr. Guenther: If these are slots that have to be filled either Democrat or Republican, we really have no choice unless somebody proposes an alternate person to these particular persons. I mean it doesn’t really matter what they are, these are the way they have been slotted.

Mrs. Lashway: These are reappointments.

Mr. Greenbaum: I just had wondered how these names had appeared on our list. It has been answered that they are reappointments, that they are not new people to the committee. As far as I know with regard to Colleen’s concern, and I agree with Colleen that if that is what the ordinance says, or statute says then we need to follow it, but just so the record is clear, the ethics committee as far as I know, has never dealt with any subtenant matter, and therefore if there was an error it was not anything of any creditial nature. I agree with Colleen that if it does say that, then we need to follow the letter of the law.

Mrs. Lashway: I will send a note out to everyone. But it wasn’t until I started to set the Agenda that I checked the parties, that I realized that people had affiliated. Nobody notified me when they established their party.

Mr. Elms: For the vacant position, I would like to nominate Father Bob from St. Judes. I believe he is unaffiliated.

President Rattner: I think we have always had a process where at least we reviewed blindly the resumes before haven’t we? We have in the past I believe taken resumes, we blinded out the name and any references that could be identified who the person is, what they work for obviously. That one could be identified.

Mr. Guenther: I think he is a fairly well known member of the community, by ethical standing, so I think that possibly we could forego that review.

Mr. Greenbaum: If he is interested in taking the position?

Mrs. Labow: Is he still here?

Mrs. Lashway: I believe he left.

President Rattner: Okay, so we’ll add Pastor Robert Mitchell. For the Ethics Committee, we’ll take as we have been doing, we’ll take each one separately. Roll call on Father Mitchell.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Rattner: Roll call on Mr. Urbach.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Rattner: Roll call on Ms. Maselli.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Rattner: Moving right along. I think another official did arrive and that’s Mr. Dick Kamin, he is the Republican State Co-Chair; thank you for coming. Okay the next item, and I will do an explanation because we have three new council members, just so they understand what they are voting for. We have an Ordinance on for first reading. This is something that we were working on in December. We could not vote on it because we did not have the number of votes required. Anything to do with awarding a capital project, you need five votes. Not four. Since this is a new Council, with new people, we have to reintroduce it. If the people who vote for this today are not saying that they are approving of it at this time, what they are doing is approving for it to move forward to a public hearing at our next public meeting. What this is going to do is, I am going to ask for a motion to introduce and this is just so we can publish it in the paper and then act on it at the next meeting.

ORDINANCES for First Reading (2nd reading December 20, 2004)

Ord. #1-2004 Bond Ordinance Providing for Improvements to the Water Utility in and by the Township of Mount Olive, in the County of Morris, New Jersey, Appropriating $151,000 Therefore and Authorizing the Issuance of $151,000 Bonds or Notes of the Township for Financing the Cost Thereof. (installation of meter pits).

Mrs. Labow moved that Ord. #1-2004 be introduced by title and passed on first reading and that a meeting be held on January 20, 2004. at the municipal building, 204 Flanders-Drakestown Road Mount Olive, NJ for a Public Hearing, consideration of second reading and passage of said ordinance and that the Clerk be directed to Publish, Post, and make available said ordinance and that the Clerk be directed to publish, post and make available said ordinance in accordance with the requirements of the law. Mr. Perkins seconded the motion.

Mr. Perkins: I had spoken with our DPW Director and we had looked at the Goldmine system which was the one we had discussed with him on the metering. I believe we are going to relook at those customers metered. If and when Toll Brothers builds out Morris Chase and that tank gets connected, we can take any appropriate steps necessary, that we don’t think that the pressures are going to be that absorbent so with luck we may not need the pressure reducing valve. That would meter every single one of the water utility customers within the Township, so everybody would be charged an equitable rate and we can conserve some water and actually start making the right amount of money.

Mr. Guenther: You mean to tell me this $151,000 is for metering just Goldmine Estates or other areas as well?

Mr. Perkins: This isn’t Goldmine. Goldmine is the one that is still left to be done.

Mr. Guenther: Oh that is still left. Okay, I misunderstood you then. So it’s all the other customers that we now have who obviously have a flat fee. Okay.

President Rattner: I’ll just mention that Mrs. Labow did a very good job. It’s very structured and there are things that we have to say on every ordinance and we all had to get use to it. You did it very well. Okay, with no further discussion, we’ll take a roll call.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously



Resolutions on Consent Agenda List are considered to be routine and non-controversial by the Township Council and will be approved by one motion (one vote). There will be no separate discussion or debate on each of these resolutions except for the possibility of brief clarifying statements which may be offered. If one or more council members requests, any individual resolution on the consent agenda may be removed from the Consent Agenda List and acted on separately.


Mrs. Labow: I request to remove No. 1, 2 & 6.

President Rattner: Is there anybody else who would like to have any others taken off. This is because these are different resolution that people either want a better explanation for, make changes, or have questions on so we don’t get tied up in the routine stuff. With that could I get a motion?

Mr. Guenther made a motion to approve Resolution No. 3, 4,5, & 7 through 13. Mr. Perkins seconded the motion.


1. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Designating the Official Newspapers of the Municipality for the Purpose of Publication of Legal Notices.

2. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Establishing the Annual Schedule of Meetings and Other Requirements Pursuant to the Open Public Meetings Act.

3. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Establishing a Temporary Budget for 2004 for the Current, Water, Sewer and Sanitation Budgets.

4. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Establishing A Petty Cash Fund for 2004.

5. Resolution of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing Acceptance of a Cash Management Plan as Prepared by the Director of Finance/Chief Financial Officer/Treasurer.

6. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Retaining Professional Services Without Competitive Bidding.

7. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Appointing Steven W. Rattner as Council Representative to the Community Development Revenue Sharing Committee.

8. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing Participation in the State of New Jersey Cooperative Purchasing Program for the Year 2004.

9. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Fixing the Rate of Interest to be Charged on Delinquent Taxes or Assessments.

10. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Purchase of Necessary Goods and Services Under Any Contract Competitively Bid by the Morris County Cooperative Pricing Council.

11. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Authorizing the Tax Assessor and/or the Township Attorney to File and Tax Appeals/Rollbacks.

12. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Establishing Various Change Funds for the Year 2004.

13. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive, County of Morris, State of New Jersey, Creating and Continuing the Mount Olive Municipal Alliance Committee.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously


1. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Designating the Official Newspapers of the Municipality for the Purpose of Publication of Legal Notices. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Establishing the Annual Schedule of Meetings and Other Requirements Pursuant to the Open Public Meetings Act.

Mrs. Labow made a motion to approve Non-Consent Resolution No.1. Mr. Elms seconded the motion.

Mr. Rattner: Is there anybody from the public that would like to address Resolution No. 1? Seeing none, I’ll close the pubic hearing and ask for Council comment?

Mrs. Labow: I would like to suggest that we have our paper of record be put back to the Mount Olive Chronicle.

Mr. Rattner: Any other discussion?

Mr. Greenbaum: It is actually a legal question. Is the Mount Olive Chronicle even eligible for consideration in light of the fact that they don’t have an office in the Township and they don’t technically publish the paper within the County. I believe those are the two criteria which are required to be considered to be the official newspaper of the Township. Even beyond that question, I think that the Daily Record offers us far greater flexibility in terms of getting our legal notices published because it is a daily newspaper rather than a weekly newspaper. It also has throughout the County a greater circulation than the Mount Olive Chronicle does. My understanding is circulation within the Township is of comparable size. The circulation of both the Daily Record and the Mount Olive Chronicle within township is actually fairly even. So to me, it seems like the advantages of going with the Daily Record outweigh the advantages of going with the Chronicle. I for one believe that the Daily Record is the appropriate official newspaper for those reasons, but I need an answer to the legal question first before I can get to the second issue.

Mr. Dorsey: The answer that I can give off the top of my head is for a number of years the Mount Olive Chronicle was the newspaper, then there was difficulty with the printing in a timely fashion of various legal advertisements, but I think the answer in recollection is the statute does mention an office in being printed within the municipality. If that were true, I think the Township would have to make them the official newspaper. But their paper is no longer printed in Mount Olive Township and therefore I think you can appoint whomever you would like too.

Mrs. Labow: I think the law didn’t say printed, it said published and they are infact still published within Morris County. The reasons why I feel that we should bring our paper of record back to the Mount Olive Chronicle is for a number of reasons. First, it cost us more money to use the Daily Record than it does to use the Mount Olive Chronicle. We could always have the Daily Record as our back up for when we have emergency notification and we’ve missed the deadline for the Mount Olive Chronicle. The other thing is, that for the public to read the legal notices, if it is in the Daily Record, first of all they have to have a year subscription because you don’t know which day it is going to be in there, so our public has to spend over $130.00 a year just to be notified whereas with the Mount Olive Chronicle, you only have to pay $18.00 a year. As far as the definition of publish goes, it is published within the County, it says right in their paper on the editorial page where it is published and the definition of publish which I looked up says to make generally known, to disseminate to the public, to release for distribution, to put an edition out and to have one’s work accepted for publication. That is all done within the boundaries of Morris County.

Mr. Elms: I for one get both papers. In the Daily Record you have to look through a very thick paper to try and find the legal notices, for Mount Olive where the Chronicle gives us legal notices once a week and they are all in the same place. So I would prefer to have the Chronicle as the official newspaper.

Mr. Buell: The Chronicle actually surpassed 1,342 subscribers in the Township of Mount Olive. We can’t get a subscribership in Mount Olive from the Record, despite the fact that we have asked several times. Lisa Lashway has also asked for that same information. Just a count of the number of records on the street left in Mount Olive on any given day, there are very few of them. So I think in terms of subscription coverage of the Township affairs, I think the Mount Olive Chronicle would by the better choice.

Mr. Greenbaum: In light of the comments which were made in Colleen’s legal description of what published means and that I am now convinced that the paper is actually published in Morris County as opposed to Bernardsville where it is actually printed, I will withdraw my objections. I really don’t feel that strongly either way and it seems like there is ample argument on both sides to support either paper and it seems to me that is Mr. Greenbaum (cont’d): just an issue which the other Council members who have spoken feel a lot stronger about the issue that I do, so I will support the Chronicle as the official newspaper.

President Rattner: With that, I just want to state that we did have problems a few years ago and the Chronicle actually said that it was because of their technology. I have had contact with their publisher and also the editor, Phil Garber, who assured me that they have corrected those issues, and they are going to do the darnest because they don’t want to be as they call it embarrassed again, with that, and if not we will pull it away from them again. But it is our local newspaper, I know a lot of different people buy it, because they want to see what their kids did in sports, the band and a lot of other activities, so it is a widely read newspaper. So is there any other discussion?

Mr. Greenbaum: In light of your comment, Ms. Parker, where is her office located?

President Rattner: I am not sure. That’s the Recorder Newspaper, the parent company, the definition I found, and I talked to Washington Township who uses them, they looked at it and said the editor, where the actual newspaper is constructed, not where it is physically printed is what they considered and they felt it met their legal requirements.

Mr. Greenbaum: I guess one could even say that they had an office in the Township and that Liz Hamlin lives here in the Township and covers the newspaper. One can say, that…

President Rattner: Thank you Mr. Greenbaum.

Mr. Perkins: I have no personal problem with utilizing the Mt. Olive Chronicle. I do know that we have had some publication issues, which did cause us I believe some legal fees and things that were not done, plus and embarrassment to the Township. If we are talking about the sports coverage, I think that the Warren Reporter and the Mount Olive/Netcong Paper do a more than admirable job in covering all of the children’s sports. I like Liz Hamlin personally. I am not overly found of the paper itself. I take it online because I won’t spend the $.50, that was a choice. I’ll buy the Daily Record. The Daily Record gives us the flexibility for all the departments, not just the Council, but it gives us that for the planning, zoning, health when they need to get something in there at a quick nature, instead of waiting the one week turnaround. I don’t mind using them, as the Council President has said, we could always yank it back out. I will support it, you are twisting my arm a little bit.

President Rattner: Right now, just so we understand where we are. The resolution has been moved for the current paper. I believe Mrs. Labow will have to make, if she wants to move forward with this, make a motion to amend the resolution to name the Mount Olive Chronicle, and name the back up paper as the Daily Record. Why don’t you make that motion.

Mrs. Labow: So moved

Mr. Perkins: Second

President Rattner: With that I am going to take a vote on the motion to amend the resolution and we’ll vote on the resolution.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Rattner: Now we will take a vote on the resolution as amended which will name the Mount Olive Chronicle, the major metropolitan newspaper, our newspaper.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Rattner: Congratulations Mrs. Labow, you just wrote your first piece of legislation.

2. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Establishing the Annual Schedule of Meetings and Other Requirements Pursuant to the Open Public Meetings Act.

Mr. Elms: I’ll make a motion to that resolution No. 2 be tabled because the dates need changes.

President Rattner: First we have to get it on the table before we can table it. Second I believe there is a Statute that says this has to be approved by the 10th. So we have to resolve this tonight.

Mr. Dorsey: If you adopt it tonight, you can always amend it when you get around to…

President Rattner: Do you have specific dates you have a problem with that maybe we can address now?

Mr. Elms: The copy that I got was marked to be revised.

Mrs. Lashway: Everyone was sent an email yesterday with the revised dates asking them to get back to me by today. The one that is in your packet is revised going back to the schedule of having four meetings per month with the exception of holiday, and elections and conflicts.

Mrs. Labow: Are we still moving it or is this moved and seconded?

President Rattner: Nobody moved it, we ended up with a discussion in the middle which I allowed. Do you want to move it now?

Mrs. Labow moved for approval of Resolution No. 8. Mr. Guenther seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Any comment from the public?

Richard Bonte, Budd Lake: I just want to thank the Council for moving back to the regular Agenda that we used to have in years earlier for workshops and regular meetings being on different dates, and I encourage that you pass the calendar as it is listed on the resolutions.

Mr. Perkins: Anybody else? Okay, if we have ready the resolution, the resolution also states that we will need a modification or amendment; it names the Daily Record is where we print the official meeting. Mr. Perkins would you modify that. We are making an amendment to change the newspaper.

Mr. Perkins moved to modify that resolution from the Daily Record to the Mount Olive Chronicle. Mr. Greenbaum seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Okay, now we are voting on the amendment.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

President Rattner: Now we will vote on the amended resolution.

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

6. Resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive Retaining Professional Services Without Competitive Bidding.

Mr. Perkins moved for approval of Resolution No. 6. Mr. Guenther seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Would anybody from the Public like to comment on Resolution No. 6?

Mr. Bonte: Resolution No. 6, dealing with the first item; Dorsey and Fisher is the legal representation for the Township. As you know I have been coming here for about 14 years and during that 14 year period of time, me and Mr. Dorsey have disagreed on quite a number of issues. We have also agreed on issues. But I have never found Mr. Dorsey to not be knowledgeable in municipal law or to provide guidance to this Council or Township that has hurt us. There has been many issues that Mr. Dorsey has taken on for the Township and been successful for the Township. One of the most notable ones, is the upholding of the 5 acre zoning just a couple of years ago. Had that not been upheld, there would be over 1,000 homes being built behind this building. I know there has been criticism of Mr. Dorsey because he takes on a lot of litigation. That is exactly why we have Mr. Dorsey, to fight for the issues that we believe are right for the Township. I think Mr. Dorsey has done an exceptional job and I would urge that this Council consider retaining him, I have seen many municipal attorneys and attorneys in other governmental bodies both within this town and with other towns. I have never personally ever seen anybody that has done a finer job and knows the law better than Mr. Dorsey has. Therefore I would encourage that the Council encourage Mr. Dorsey and that those that are opposed to his appointment reconsider what is for the best interest of the Township, and I think if you were to look at the record in what has occurred in the time that Mr. Dorsey has been the attorney for the Township, I think you will come to the conclusion that he has done a very ample job for this Township. Thank you.

Dave Jones, Budd Lake: Not to say that Mr. Dorsey has not done an excellent job, and I know he is an excellent attorney, but there are a lot of other attorneys out there and I think we should consider replacing Mr. Dorsey with another firm. Maybe with a firm that all of the Council is more happy with. In November, the
Mr. Jones (cont’d): Public spoke out when they replaced four Republicans with four Democrats. That means they wanted a change from business as usual and I believe that includes Mr. Dorsey. I would like to go on to say that in my opinion, I think the Township has been involved in a lot of needless litigation. In my opinion the Republican support of Mr. Dorsey has more to do with his ability to raise campaign funds for the Republican party.

President Rattner: Thank you Mr. Jones. Would anyone else like to speak on this resolution? Seeing none, I close the public portion and open it up for Council Discussion.

Mr. Greenbaum: I am in need of some clarification on this resolution. Is it my understanding that this resolution does not actually retain anybody?

Mr. Dorsey: This is a professional services contract.

Mr. Greenbaum: Okay, so by passing this we are not actually retaining anybody?

Mr. Dorsey: You are authorizing those professional services, not necessarily the terms of those contracts.
Mr. Greenbaum: I understand, thank you.

President Rattner: What I think in common language is that this gives us the ability to deal with the professionals listed on there. Also throughout the year we add as we have different needs, different specialties or different people that we want to bring on.

Mr. Elms: I also believe that any contract with any of these vendors requires the Mayor’s signature. He has to approve any contracts, right?

Mr. Dorsey: No, he doesn’t approve them, he is required to sign contracts approved by the Council.

Mr. Elms: I am sorry I didn’t hear you.

Mr. Dorsey: He signs the contracts; it is the Council that authorizes the contracts.

Mrs. Labow: The reason why I asked for this to be pulled is because I want a clarification on this. We have a court hearing tomorrow which may determine who our municipal attorney may or may not be. Is it prudent to pass this this evening or table it until we have the results of the Court date tomorrow?

President Rattner: My personal view is that because the name is on there, as I said we don’t use everybody, it just gives us currently the ability to deal with any of those professionals as the need be and it is my opinion that all of the names on there we need on there if we are going to add as we go along, and we could take off anybody I guess by resolution as we go forward. Right now I understand based on the law that we have a certain amount of carryovers and we still have to run the government, so at such time that we are giving different direction from the judicial branch, we have to keep operating the government.

Mrs. Labow: Can I suggest we add three more to this list?

President Rattner: Well, if we haven’t had appointments, then it doesn’t make any sense that nobody could work, because unless they are officially appointed, then why have a contract? You could make a motion, I don’t know if you will get four votes.

Mrs. Labow: So you are saying…

President Rattner: Next meeting we could add as many as we want to, as a Board. Is there anything else?

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously with the exception of Mrs. Labow who abstained.

President Rattner: We have one more resolution that I believe everybody got tonight. This has to do with an emergency we had on Sandshore Road where we had a culvert that collapsed some weeks ago. Even to do a repair, we need DEP approval, we just got it and they’ll have to close the road to make the repair. Has everybody had time to look at that? The Clerk has just advised me this needs to be read into the record, so I will ask her to do so.

WHEREAS A resolution of the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive authorizing the closure of Sandshore Road between Knolls Lane and Budd Lake Heights Road.

WHEREAS it is necessary that the Sandshore Road culvert be repaired; and in order to provide for orderly repair of the Culvert it is necessary for this road to be closed between January 13, 2004, through January 15, 2004, with the understanding that the work will generally be performed between the hours of 9:00 am and 4:00 pm on those days.

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Township Council of the Township of Mount Olive that it does hereby authorize the Mount Olive Public Works Department to close Sandshore Road between January 13, 2004 to January 15, 2004 for the necessary repairs to the culvert between 9:00 am and 4:00pm.

Mr. Greenbaum moved for approval of this resolution and Mr. Perkins seconded the motion.

President Rattner: Would anybody from the Public like to comment on this?

Mrs. Miller: I would like to suggest that after you pass this that you send it to the Department of Transportation for the School Board because this is going to affect a lot of school buses.

President Rattner: Thank you very much former Councilwoman Miller. That is a good idea. I believe we have that policy. Is that right, Lisa?

Mrs. Lashway: I believe so.

President Rattner: Are there any other comments?

Richard Bonte, Budd Lake : First of all I would like to suggest that you change the section that is closed to from Knolls Lane to Firetower Road rather than Budd Lake Heights Road. It allows traffic to proceed eastbound a little further. Secondly I would like to see signs out there at least a week ahead of this closure. A lot of people use this road. The signs out there alerting people that the road will be closed and the appropriate detour signs will be posted. Because we have a habit in this town of doing things like this and not putting any detour signs up or any advanced notification. I would like to make sure that is done. A lot of people use this road every day.

President Rattner: I’m trying to think, I guess Firetower is closer, I’m not sure.

Mr. Bonte: Firetower is about ¼ mile closer to where the bridge is. So we’ll still allow people to have to go up and down Firetower Road access off of Sandshore. There is really no reason to close it further back.

Mr. Greenbaum: We have members of the Police Department here, perhaps they have something to offer, whether or not one is a better solution than the other, or why this particular solution.

Ed Katona, Chief of Police: Just to clarify, this has been an emergent situation, the DPW has been working with our traffic officer to secure the appropriate signage and the detours. Budd Lake Heights Road is a better road for traffic to make their left turn. It is easier to negotiate, the times have been negotiated as well, so that most people can get their commute in the morning and get their commute in in the evening after the work is done. We have had conversations with the contractor. The contractor will have the road open at the close of their construction by 4:00 pm and then open it up the next day, complete what they have to do, and then seal it up. It should be a two day job is what they are telling us at this point. The signs are being prepared, well not as we speak, but probably by tomorrow and will be posted hopefully by Thursday or Friday of this week.

Mr. Greenbaum: So it is the Police Department’s decision that the original proposal in terms of where the road is to be closed from and to is more acceptable than the proposal from Mr. Bonte.

Chief Katona: It was thought out, it allows for an easier turn for some larger vehicles.

Mrs. Labow: I wanted to agree with Chief Katona because I’ve lived in that area and it is very hard to make a left onto Firetower Road, it is much easier to make a left onto Budd Lake Heights Road.

Tom Casserly, Lozier Road, Budd Lake: I guess that Lozier Road is going to be the detour route; a very narrow road.

Chief Katona: Lozier Road is going to be one of two detour routes. One route going to Lozier Road to Woodland and out to Route 46. The other would be Sandshore Road to Smithtown Road and out to Route 46 at that traffic light go back to that intersection would really create gridlock and probably add 30-45 Chief Katona (cont’d): minutes of travel time to the average commuter in the morning. The detours will not be in place until after the rush hour of 9:00 am and it will be open before the rush hour of 5:00 pm in the afternoon. The impact on Lozier Road will be lessened by that. It won’t be all day, and it won’t be during the rush hour.

Mr. Casserly: Can I ask that there might be some extra police patrol in back there. I don’t know if the Town Council can do that. It is a very narrow road, typically kids out and people walking back there. They are going to be using that road all day long instead of Sandshore Road. It certainly is not the grade of road compared to Sandshore Road.

President Rattner: I am sure the Chief of Police and with consultation of the work actually being done and when, we will make sure that will happen. We all have the best interest of the children and all the citizens in mind. Thank you. Any other discussion? Nobody else from the public. Any other final comments?

ROLL CALL: Passed Unanimously

Mayor’s Appointments

Comm. Dev. Revenue Sharing Committee

Kathy Murphy,1 year term expires 12/31/04,
Bob Scholtz, Alt., 1 year term expires 12/31/04

Open Space Committee
Tracy Wadhams, 3 year term expires 12/31/06

Environmental Commission
Judith Hirky, 3 year term expires 12/31/06
Chris Ide, 3 year term expires 12/31/06
James Smith, Planning Board Liaison, 3 year term expires 12/31/06
Andrew Egan, Alt. II, 2 year term expires 12/31/05

Planning Board
Ralph DeFranzo, 4 year term expires 12/31/07
James Smith, Environmental Comm. Liaison, 3 year term expires 12/31/06
Scott VanNess, (Class II) 1 year term expires 12/31/04
Lewis Candura, Alt I, 2 year term expires 12/31/05

President Rattner: I do want to mention one more official that did come in. Bill Kersey, former Morris County Chair, current chair of Wharton, I believe he is also the commissioner of the Morris County Tax Board. Thank you for coming.

Public Portion

President Rattner: This is where the public can bring up anything they would like to address to the Council. I just ask with the number of people and the festive night that this should be, that we keep it light and brief. Would anybody from the public like to address the Council at this time?

Nelson Russell, Budd lake Heights Road, Budd Lake: While we are having the Sandshore Road area work done, that particular area of Sandshore Road is a trash pit at the moment. There is all kinds of garbage along the shoulders, and I am wondering if we can get that cleaned up.

President Rattner: Thank you.

Tom Casserly, Lozier Road, Budd Lake: While we are on the subject of the trash pit. All of you people live in Town, do you get these in (newspapers) your driveway once a week?

Mrs. Labow: I don’t anymore.

Mr. Casserly: Well I have tried not to get it. I have called them. This is like legal littering I would have to say. Is there any way the Town could do anything about it.

President Rattner: Mr. Guenther addressed this and tried to do something when he was Council President. I’ll let him explain it.

Mr. Guenther: I took that up with a complaint from a citizen. I thought it was a legitimate complaint. I received a four or five page letter from the publications attorney citing all kinds of legal opinions that support their rights under the 1st amendment. It’s not something were we could have had the choice of fighting it and spending thousands of dollars. I didn’t think that was of interest to the Township. You can, if you are having problems; you said you have called them.

Mr. Casserly: I’ve attempted. It did stop for a while and then they came back. I called them and had them pick up ten of them at the bottom of my driveway that I left there. Actually they came out and picked them up and a couple weeks later they started coming back again. I am at a loss. So what you are saying is that it is up to the individual to attempt to deal with it.

Mr. Guenther: Unfortunately unless we want to challenge it in court and based on the decisions that they decided. There were any number of decisions. It didn’t appear likely that we would be successful. So I did not think it was something that I could recommend to the Council to consider.

Mr. Greenbaum: There were very valid reasons beyond the trash reason for trying to get the newspaper to stop doing it in the fashion that they are doing it. It alerts people to a home which is unoccupied, and the trash issue, unfortunately without litigating the issue and it would be very costly.

Mr. Casserly: I watched the mail truck slide right by my driveway yesterday. Stepped on the brakes and landed on one of these, wooooo it went right by.

Mr. Greenbaum: I agree with you. I would like to see the practice stopped. I don’t know how it could get done.

Mr. Casserly: Typically there is nothing that could be done except for something that the individual would have to do.

Mr. Guenther: The only thing I could suggest is if we keep continuing to have the problem, possibly we could write a letter on your behalf or anybody else that is having a problem and state to the publication “please you have been advised several times, you have stopped the practice, this individual no longer wishes to have it. Please respect his wishes.”

Mr. Greenbaum: You may actually want to get a copy of the letter Bernie sent and their response and we can provide that to you. Contact Lisa and she will get you both of those. I would like to say one thing to Mr. Casserly.

Mrs. Labow: I had the same situation. They keep putting the paper in my front yard as well as on my property, that there is no house repeatably. I called them up and told them if they do it again, I will sue them, it worked, I haven’t had a paper from them since. A few days later I called again and I said what is it that you guys don’t understand? I said do I really need to take legal action, you are littering my property.

Mr. Casserly: I had them come out; they came out and picked them up.

Mrs. Labow: Do you want me to call them?

President Rattner: The Clerk does have something to add.

Mrs. Lashway: The procedure is, if the resident calls and they do not stop, if you call me, and I place the call and demand stopping delivery in your home, it will stop. If it does not, then we handle it in a different way, so if you just give me your address, I will put the call in for you. Which paper is it?

Mr. Casserly: The Reporter.

Closing Mayoral Comments

Mayor De La Roche: I thank you all for coming out. I appreciate it. This is what we meant by participatory government. We hope that you continue to be interested in your government, because that is how we make changes. I haven’t prepared any special remarks because this is supposed to be a ceremonial sort of swearing in and everybody was on the same plane. But I have to admit, you may have noticed that some of the desires were frustrated, but that’s that what we have courts for, and we’ll be proceeding there in order to resolve these issues. Mayor De La Roche (cont’d): Hopefully you’ll understand that many of these appointments belong to the Mayor and they have been eroded over the years, but they will be returning, and that’s what elected officials do. They go by whatever laws are on the books and we live with that and if we want to change it we go to the legislature. We don’t change everything by ordinances, we live by Statutes and that is what we are going to do. Again, without turning it into a political thing which I certainly do not want to do, I just want to say to you I appreciate you coming out. I am glad to see that the Township is alive and healthy and as you know I have invited everyone to go over to the Senior Citizens Building. We are providing refreshments. We especially appreciate you coming out on a night like this and I hope you continue to do that because it is the public’s comments that make us function well. Again, I don’t know how to say this in any other way other than we deeply appreciate your continuing interest in your government. This is going to be a government of the people of Mount Olive. There will be no special interests, there will be none of that going on. We are going to take this government and put it back into the hands of the people, the electorate, and that’s what we are going to do. As hard as it may seem at times and believe me, it is hard at times; we are going to do it, with your continuing support and continuing vigilance to see that we do it, we will do it. So again, without getting on a soap box, because my throat is already gone, I just want to say to you, please join us. We have prepared some nice refreshments over in the Senior Citizens building. Everyone is welcome, we don’t care what party you are with. You might have seen that even in my appointments. There has been no party affiliations considered. I appoint according to what I consider to be ability and we’ve read every resume that was submitted to us. Again, let me say without getting into it in great detail, we will turn it around. We will seek the courts help, and we will resolve these issues. There are not any personalities involved, it is just a matter of doing what I feel I was elected to do and that was to change what was going on in the Township. I and my fellow Council people will do what you have asked us to do. It will be hard, believe me it’s going to be hard. You can see evidence of that already, but we will do it, and with your help, no one will stop us, okay? Again, come over, enjoy it, we want to keep this a festive night. Hopefully that is what we will all do. Thank you very much.

Closing Council Comments

Mr. Buell: During the recent campaign, Colleen Labow and I made the commitment that we were going to continue to go around, knocking on doors, talking to people. The thing we want to know is what is on your mind? As part of that process, we will be handing out and some other people will be joining us, a questionnaire that I will be compiling the data on and publishing the data on a periodic basis as it is produced. If we knock on your door and ask you to fill out the form, that is the purpose and I just wanted to let everybody know that this will be ongoing as soon as I get our website up on Mount Olive Thank you very much.

Mrs. Labow: I just want to thank everyone for coming this evening, I want to particularly thank my family, my husband, Mark is still here, my sons Jeremy and Curtis already booked and all of my friends who have been there for me, it’s been along time, three years I have been campaigning and I want to say that the public spoke very loud and clear on November 4, 2003 for a change. I had a bet going with Mr. Greenbaum that I would never be elected to Council as a Democrat, glad to say I won and I want to thank everybody. I look forward to seeing you across the street.

Mr. Elms: I want to thank all of you for coming tonight. I realize it is a weekday night. I want to thank all the voters who put me up here. It’s a responsibility, and I take it seriously.

Mr. Guenther: I just want to make a few remarks about the Mayor’s comments. Even though he said they weren’t political, I believe they were. He mentioned the fact that he made certain appointments according to ability. It is my personal opinion that is not the case, at least compared to some of the other people that were available. He mentioned that we live by Statutes and he is trying to overturn statutes, that through the Court system that were established for certain appointments that are made by Council or approved by Council. He is going to cause the Township amounts of money. This I find is hypocritical, because in the campaign that they waged they citied legal expenses incurred by this Council. So he is already starting on off on the foot on his first day in office incurring additional legal expenses, which really aren’t necessary. He says no special interests were served, I believe they were. When you look at some of the appointments, they were strictly political appointments so that’s really all I have to say and as we go along we’ve seen some of the appointments. We may have not been along party lines from people that we choose according to ability. The inference that we the Republicans do not choose people according to ability is completely false.

Mayor De La Roche: I would like to respond to that if I may.

President Rattner: No, no. Responding would be against…

Mayor De La Roche: Yes I will respond to it.

President Rattner: No, no, no. This is a Council meeting. You are here as our guest. We have the comments, we are going down the row with closing comments. Mr. Guenther his making his comments and we are just going to go down the line.

Mayor De La Roche: There will be no illegal expenses being absorbed by the lawyers themselves. So there is no legal expense involved in contesting to make sure your government is in the hands where it belongs.

Mr. Perkins: Good evening ladies and gentlemen. It is an honor to be back up here serving another year. It has been an interesting year. Anybody who still has that question that thought I was moving from the vice presidency up to the presidency’s position this year. I had informed all of the Council including the newly elected that I would be refusing that nomination. I have recently gained new employment that takes me away from this Township quite a bit. I don’t think I could do you folks justice in that position of President. It is a very responsible position and so I defer it over to Mr. Rattner. It’s not that it is something I haven’t dreamed about when we first started talking about politics a year ago. It wasn’t easy, but it is a decision I think is in the best interest of the Township. Just in case anybody was wondering, that it is the reason why I did not accept that nomination. I would like to thank my wife Lauren, she still supports me, I’ll never understand why. But I love this Township, I have watched it grow. We have all had differences, some people think money has been spent wisely in some places and unwisely in others and I have my own personal opinion upon that. I know exactly how I feel about any item when I walk up on this dais on any given Tuesday night, and without the input of the residents of Mount Olive Township, you get a very tainted vote because everybody has their own personal opinion. So I always encourage people to come out. Not that I don’t like the handful of people that show up here every single meeting. I would like to see more people show up, it would be nice. Which leads me into the one Agenda item that is being changed to go into four meetings a month, I understand the pros and the cons, I hope everybody understands the cons. If you are at a workshop meeting you don’t get a whole lot of opportunity as the public to make comments about things that are being discussed. That you are really there as an observer. So you need to wait one more week after that to be able to come back and make any comment about it. So you give up two Tuesday night’s instead of one. I had always sided with last year’s Council President Mr. Guenther, when we had gone to the summer schedule and then continued it on. I think if the meetings are run productively you can get two of them done. If there is a necessity to have a longer meeting, because of interested parties that come up, I think you can have those meetings. But be aware that if you are going to participate in the government, now the Council will be meeting four times a month. Two of those you really don’t get a lot to say, two of them you do. So you guys need to remember that, happy New Year, and I hope you brought an appetite for the Mayor’s food. Good night.

Mr. Greenbaum: I wasn’t going to say anything tonight, but my position has changed in light of the Mayor’s comments. I agree with Bernie that although couched in terms of, I am not going to make a political comment which to me sounds like I am glad you all came, join me for coffee and cake afterwards. That is not what we heard from the Mayor. We heard his position on why he thought the action we took was wrong and I think that the Mayor sometimes forgets that there are seven Council Members, and himself. We are all elected officials and we represent the entire Township. The ordinances of the township are set up in such a way and in the State of New Jersey that the power is shared so that there is continuity in government. So that someone doesn’t just come in and change the balance of everything that’s gone on. That could only be done by the voters. The reason that advice and consent is an option or is the required law is because one person can’t make all the decisions for the entire community. It’s a checks and balances issue. That is what we have here. Now the Mayor and Council disagree on what the Statute said. To me, the clear reading of the Statutes is the Mayor cannot make changes in advice and consent positions and the person who is currently in power stays in and that is my understanding of the clear reading of the Statute. The Mayor believes he has found I don’t want to characterize his words, but a way around. Or maybe he disagrees with my opinion, I don’t want to characterize his words, but I tell you as I sit up here, that as an elected official, I would not violate the letter of the law if I believed it not to be the appropriate action. So you may not agree, and certainly the Mayor does not agree with some of the decisions we made up here, but we will all be bound by whatever Court decision comes down and we will move on as a group disagreeing and agreeing as we did tonight on certain issues. I also have to disagree with the Mayor’s comment that his appointments were the most qualified people which was one of their election campaign items. In certain cases I think his appointments were very qualified. In certain other cases I have a real problem and let me point out why. With regard to the appointment of Paul Bangiola to the position of Prosecutor, I believe that the Mayor made a big mistake. As a lawyer in Morris County and a practitioner in Morris County I have the opportunity to practice in the different Municipal Courts throughout the County. I can tell you as a lawyer, there is not one individual who has not come up to me and said that Mount Olives Municipal Court is the best run Municipal Court in the County. There was no reason to appoint somebody else to that position other than political change. To appoint Paul Bangiola, who I am sure is a very good attorney, I have dealt with Paul a couple of times in the past, but Brian is an excellent prosecutor and he is involved specifically in the administration of that court and in the way that justice is presented to the Judge. I can tell you that I am not the only one that thinks so because there was a letter from the Police Department urging the Mayor to retain Brain Mason as Prosecutor because it works for the administration of the Court. I just had a Mr. Greenbaum (cont’d): real problem with that particular change out of all of the other changes that were proposed.

President Rattner: Thank you Mr. Greenbaum. First I want to say that I thank everybody up here because I was elected unanimously, one of the few votes that went that way. But seriously, it is going to be an interesting year, it is going to be a tough year I think for me keeping this crew together and not looking at anybody individually. We are seven individuals plus the Mayor as the eighth individual and I really believe that we all have the best interests of the Town in mind. We have different ways of getting there, we have different skills. We have different ideas. We’ve gone; he’s gotten his advice, we have gotten advice to. We have attorneys but We also go to the State Agencies like the Division of Community Affairs, the Government Agency, The League of Municipalities who have given us written opinions on exactly how it goes back and forth. You can look at things differently and people take it away. The other interesting thing I think you saw up here which makes me wonder why I took this position is the largest criticism I think I took was from one of my Republican Council mates when he was talking about the meetings and so we do think independently. Even in the past. The Mayor is somebody new that I met just recently, actually Mr. Buell probably the same thing. I have known Colleen a while, she has been involved in the town, she has run against me before. You made it. Mr. Elms and I have had a lot of discussions on a lot of different things he has been involved in. Probably before we agreed more than we’re agreeing right now, but that is just because of the side of the table that we are on. In our form of Government, we’re modeled after the federal government. It is called Mayor/Council form of Government. There are shared responsibilities. There are some responsibilities that are strictly the Mayors, some responsibilities that are strictly the Councils and some where they are shared and they are going to be difficult. They cause different problems, it’s not real efficient, I think it was put in the law for that one reason, to make sure that one does not become too strong, it is supposed to be shared. As we start working it out, you have to understand, I am sure we are feeling each other out. We are new to each other, it’s a new situation and we are going to move forward and I am going to make sure that this Council moves forward for the best interest of the Council for the people that were appointed and confirmed tonight, I congratulate you. The other people who have had names put up and we are constantly looking for people. We have always had a file of resumes because there are a lot of times when different boards need people, we do want to keep your interest and make sure that you’ll have your availability when the need does come up and openings will open up. Thank you very much.
Reverend Mark Jernigan: After hearing everyone’s comments I can’t think of a more appropriate thing to do than pray. So if you would join me please in prayer. Mighty and gracious God we give thanks for each person who has been elected to office, who is giving of themselves for the betterment of the Township of Mt. Olive. We would pray that in this coming year consensus will win out over conflict, that personal agendas will be put aside in lieu of progress, that hot heads would cool down, and humility would rule. That egos would be set aside so that understanding could take place, and that division would give way to vision. You have blessed our country with the Government of the people by the people and for the people. May all of those who have been elected as the servants of the people remember that and take seriously that which they have been called to do, remind us all that there is wisdom greater than our own. May we all continually seek that wisdom and be guided by that wisdom as we work together for the Township of Mt. Olive and all of it’s residents. We pray all of this is the name of our Lord. Amen.

President Rattner: Thank you very much. Before we move for adjournment, I just want to mention on the bottom of the agenda we have a workshop, there is not one scheduled, so after this is over I guess this is the Mayor and new Council Member’s party.

Motion to adjourn made and seconded, all in favor, none opposed. The meeting adjourned at 9:25 pm.


Council President

I, LISA M LASHWAY, Township Clerk of the Township of Mount Olive do hereby certify that the foregoing Minutes is a true and correct copy of the Minutes approved at a legally convened meeting of the Mount Olive Township Council duly held on February 24, 2004.


Mount Olive Township Clerk




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