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MANAGER'S BLOG

From the desk of Thomas S. Russo, Jr.

Jan 20

January 20, 2017

Posted on January 20, 2017 at 1:28 PM by Thomas Russo, Jr.

Thank you to former president Barack Obama for his eight years of service and best wishes to our 45th president Donald J. Trump. May true wisdom and purpose guide his decision-making for the next four years.

I have scheduled two interviews for Monday night to fill a vacancy on the Housing Authority:
6:30pm George Wink.
6:45pm Jack Durkin

Our next Town Council meeting will follow beginning at 7:00pm.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Lorraine's office has prepared the minutes from the January 9th Special, Regular and Executive meetings for consideration and approval.

OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
This is for those that wish to address the Town Council but do not plan on staying for the whole meeting. There is a note to the public on the agenda to please keep their comments to a maximum of 5 minutes. This allows ample time for all whom wish to speak and keeps the meeting moving forward. The public can speak on any matter.

COUNCIL & MANAGER REPORTS
1. Forestry Plan Update

ORDINANCES
There are two ordinances for 2nd Reading and Public Hearing:

Ordinance 2017-1 will amend the current sign ordinance with regards to EMB illumination.

Ordinance 2017-2 will reappropriate funds for the purchase of an unmarked 4WD police vehicle.

OLD BUSINESS

CONSENT AGENDA
Resolution #10-2017* will authorize the waiving of late payment penalty fees for utility payments received between June 25, 2017 and June 30, 2017. This will be the first quarter which the new payment due dates go into effect.

Resolution #11-2017* will execute an agreement with Robert B. McBriar, Esq., for his services as conflict counsel.

Resolution #12-2017* will approve the submission of a grant application and grant contract execution with NJDOT for the Plainfield Avenue Project

Resolution #13-2017* will approve the renewal of the Junk Dealers License for George’s Salvage.

Resolution #14-2017* will approve the renewal of the Junk Dealers License for Newton Auto Exchange.

Resolution #15-2017* will authorize 2016 appropriation reserve transfers.

Resolution #16-2017* will authorize the payment of bills and vouchers.

Resolution #17-2017* will reappoint Brian Lockwood to the Utility Advisory Board for five (5) years.

Resolution #18-2017* will reappoint Matt Smith to the Advisory Shade Tree Commission for five (5) years.

Resolution #19-2017* will certify the list of LOSAP participants for the Fire Department for 2016.

INTERMISSION

DISCUSSION

OPEN TO THE PUBLIC

COUNCIL & MANAGER COMMENTS

THE WEEK IN REVIEW
Morris Lake is 53 ½ inches below spillway. Water restrictions are still in place.

I met with representatives from the SCCC Foundation to discuss partnering on one of their summer concerts to benefit Veterans. We are looking at the end of June for same.

We will be working with our friends at the SC Food Pantry on volunteer hours for municipal staff as a way to give back to the greater Newton community in a different way. I will keep you posted.

The proposed 2017 municipal budget will be available to Council members next Friday.

We met with our friends at TransOptions to discuss Round II of the Street Smart Newton campaign which will commence this year after Labor Day. We look forward to another successful partnership on vehicle and pedestrian safety in Newton.

Have a great weekend!

Yours in Service,
TSRJR
Jan 13

January 13, 2017

Posted on January 13, 2017 at 2:49 PM by Thomas Russo, Jr.

A reminder – municipal offices are closed on Monday, January 16th in recognition of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

Our next Town Council meeting will be on Monday, January 23rd at 7:00pm. Prior to same will be two volunteer interviews commencing at 6:30pm.

THE WEEK IN REVIEW
Morris Lake is 55 inches below the top of the spillway. Water restrictions are still in effect.

Many thanks to the Clerk’s Office and DPW for managing another successful Rabies Clinic last weekend.

We have hired a new Code Enforcement Director, Bernard Hattersley, who will start work on Tuesday the 17th. We welcome Bernie to his new position and to our team!

Many staff members attended the Defensive Driving Course sponsored by our insurance fund and conducted by Ivan Cohen.

The proposed redeveloper of the McGuire’s Redevelopment Area, Woodmont Properties, continues to work on schematics for their proposed redevelopment.

Routine business was discussed at the first EDC meeting of the year.

A new copier has been ordered for the 2nd floor of the municipal building – same will come out of the 2017 CIF budget and prevent a minor mutiny amongst certain staff members.

No response as of yet from our friends at the County of Sussex regarding our Hicks Avenue resolution.

Dawn and I continue to craft the 2017 operating and capital budgets for dissemination to the Governing Body by the end of the month.

New 2’ x 3’ signs have been ordered from Sign-A-Rama for Lot # 1 Adams Street and Lot #4 Central Plaza detailing the new “buy ½ hour get 2 hours free” parking provision.

Enjoy your weekend! Go Patriots?!?

Yours in Service,
TSRJR
Jan 06

January 6, 2017

Posted on January 6, 2017 at 3:09 PM by Thomas Russo, Jr.

Happy New Year!

I have scheduled two interviews for Monday, January 9th for the position of Conflict Town Attorney: 6:30pm Robert McBriar, Esq. and 6:45pm Megan Ward, Esq.

Our next Town Council meeting will follow beginning at 7:00pm.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Lorraine's office has prepared the minutes from the December 28th Regular and Executive meetings for consideration and approval.

OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
This is for those that wish to address the Town Council but do not plan on staying for the whole meeting. There is a note to the public on the agenda to please keep their comments to a maximum of 5 minutes. This allows ample time for all whom wish to speak and keeps the meeting moving forward. The public can speak on any matter.

PRESENTATION
Mayor Diglio will present Sgt. Frank Philhower a proclamation for his 22 years of service to the Town.

Steve Van Nieuwland will be promoted to the rank of Sergeant. The Mayor will do the swearing-in.

COUNCIL & MANAGER REPORTS
I will review the proposed Budget Hearing dates.

ORDINANCES - Introduction

Ordinance 2017-1 will amend the current sign ordinance with regards to illumination.

Ordinance 2017-2 will reappropriate funds for the purchase of an unmarked 4WD police vehicle.

OLD BUSINESS

CONSENT AGENDA
Resolution #1-2017* will authorize the execution of an employment agreement with the Town Manager.

Resolution #2-2017* will authorize a 2016 capital budget amendment. This is done in conjunction with Ordinance 2017-2 above.

Resolution #3-2017* will adopt a temporary operating and water and sewer budget.

Resolution #4-2017* will authorize 2016 appropriation reserve transfers.

Resolution #5-2017* will appoint the Town’s Environmental Counsel and Deputy Public Defender for 2017.

Resolution #6-2017* will authorize the auction of surplus items on Govdeals.com.

Resolution #7-2017* will authorize the payment of bills and vouchers.

Resolution #8-2017* will reappoint Neil Flaherty to the Planning Board for four (4) years.

Application(s)*
1. An application for an off-premise raffle (50-50) from the Karen Ann Quinlan Charitable Foundation to be held on Friday, December 29, 2017 at 12:00 pm at 99 Sparta Avenue, Newton.
2. An application for an on-premise Bingo from the Newton Pride Foundation to be held on Friday, February 10, 2017 from 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm (rain date of Friday, February 17, 2017 from 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm) at 44 Ryerson Avenue, Newton.
3. An application for an on-premise Raffle (50-50) from the Newton Pride Foundation to be held on Friday, February 10, 2017 from 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm (rain date of Friday, February 17, 2017 from 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm) at 44 Ryerson Avenue, Newton.

INTERMISSION

DISCUSSION

OPEN TO THE PUBLIC

COUNCIL & MANAGER COMMENTS

EXECUTIVE SESSION
Resolution #9-2017 will authorize entering into closed session for one item:
1. Contract Negotiations – PBA/SOA

Morris Lake is 54 inches below the top of the spillway. Water restrictions are still in effect.

Enjoy your weekend – let’s go GIANTS!

Yours in Service,
TSRJR