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MANAGER'S BLOG

From the desk of Thomas S. Russo, Jr.

Mar 27

March 27, 2015

Posted on March 27, 2015 at 9:56 AM by Thomas Russo, Jr.

The Easter Egg Hunt is tomorrow at 10:30am.

The Senior Luncheon is Noon on Sunday. Special thanks to Thorlabs for purchasing 100 tickets for seniors to attend the high school musical!

We are closed next Friday for Good Friday. There will be no newsletter next week – enjoy the Easter holiday!

The next Town Council meeting is Monday, April 13th at 7:00pm.

THE WEEK IN REVIEW
Morris Lake was 16 inches below the top of the spillway on 3.25.15.

I am looking into moving the Neighbors Helping Neighbors event to the fall for a change of pace. I will keep you posted.

Jenn Credidio is in the process of updating the proforma for Hicks based on the Council discussion Monday night.

The pre-construction meeting was held on Thursday with the contractor for 85 Sparta LLC, Sparta for the relocation of the 10” and 16” watermain. Work will commence on the valve insertion and relocation on Tuesday, April 7th. A plan has been put in place to provide water through the Sparta water system for about 25 residents that would be affected with placement of valves as the first phase of the project. The second phase of the project the entire town will be on Sparta water for approximately 4 days. Timeframe on that portion will be the week of the April 13th. The cost of any water from Sparta will be paid by the contractor.

Our new part-time HR Director will start Tuesday, March 31st. I will introduce Jennifer to the team on Tuesday.

Have a great weekend!

Yours for a Better Newton,
TSRJR
Mar 20

March 20, 2015

Posted on March 20, 2015 at 10:30 AM by Thomas Russo, Jr.

A friendly reminder the St. Patrick’s Day Parade is Saturday at 11:30am!

I have scheduled an interview with Blake Panio beginning at 6:45pm on Monday night; immediately following will be our Town Council meeting at 7:00pm. Mr. Panio’s application has been shared with you on the Google Drive.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Lorraine's office has prepared the minutes from the February 23rd Executive Session and the March 9th Regular 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
I have a proclamation for William Dressel for his 40 years of service to the NJ State League of Municipalities to be entered into the record.

We will have an update on the Fire Museum Project from Cory Stoner, Town Engineer.

ORDINANCES
There are five ordinances for public hearing and adoption:

Ordinance 2015-5 is a fully funded general capital improvement ordinance for $25,000 towards the acquisition of a new fire truck and equipment.

Ordinance 2015-6 will eliminate run-off elections.

Ordinance 2015-7 will repeal Ordinance 2003-6; a memo on this has been shared with you on the Google Drive.

Ordinance 2015-8 will adopt amendments to the Merriam Gateway Redevelopment Plan with comments from the Planning Board.

Ordinance 2015-9 will adopt the McGuire’s Area Redevelopment Plan.

There are three ordinances for introduction:

Ordinance 2015-10 will establish a Tree Bank.

Ordinance 2015-11 will create a section in the Newton Code Book regulating emergency standby generators.

Ordinance 2015-12 will amend Chapter 100 of the Code Book to update the fee for Garage Sale Licenses.

OLD BUSINESS

CONSENT AGENDA
Resolution #43-2015* will accept the bid for the lease of space on the High Street/Route 94 Water Tank to T-Mobile Northeast LLC.

Resolution #44-2015* will award the purchase contracts for sludge and chemical waste trucking.

Resolution #45-2015* will approve 2014 appropriation reserve transfers.

Resolution #46-2015* will authorize credits due water and sewer utility accounts.

Resolution #47-2015* will authorize Change Order No. 2 for the Fire Museum Masonry Renovations Project.

Resolution #48-2015* will award purchase contracts for the acquisition of chemicals.

Resolution #49-2015* will approve bills and vouchers for payment.

Application(s)*
There are two applications for consideration:
1. Application for an off-premise raffle (50/50) from the Pride Foundation to be held on October 31, 2015 form 11:00am to 1:00pm at Newton High School.
2. An application for a junior firefighter from Jose Urena, 127 High Street into the Newton Fire Department.

INTERMISSION

DISCUSSION

OPEN TO THE PUBLIC

COUNCIL & MANAGER COMMENTS

EXECUTIVE SESSION
Resolution #50-2015 will authorize discussions on the Hicks Avenue Redevelopment.

THE WEEK IN REVIEW
Morris Lake was 18 inches below the top of the spillway on 3.18.15.

A preconstruction meeting was held on Wednesday with JEV regarding the primary tank covers and drive replacement project at the WWTP. JEV is in the process of getting submittals into HMM and should be onsite to do the actual construction work the beginning of June. The project construction time will take approximately 3 weeks.

Dawn and I are working on the budget PowerPoint presentation which I will present on April 13, 2015.

We had the Armory Conference Call this week and anticipate a follow-up sometime in mid-April. I presented the Town requirements – we have yet to receive same from our friends at the State of NJ. I will keep you posted.

We met with the County Administrator and County Counsel to discuss the wireless 9-1-1 calls for service we are still receiving. It is anticipated that most of the transition will occur in April. Chief Richards is working on a proposal for the County to recoup the costs of same. I will keep you posted.

We are working with NFAS on the acquisition of their new ambulances, one of which will be paid for and owned by the Town.

Routine business discussed at the health insurance fund meeting.

Our new part-time HR Director will start Tuesday, March 31st.

Kayleen Pickering will be leaving the organization for a full-time position elsewhere – we wish her all the best!

Have a great weekend! Enjoy the Parade!

Yours for a Better Newton,
TSRJR
Mar 13

March 13, 2015

Posted on March 13, 2015 at 12:50 PM by Thomas Russo, Jr.

Our next Town Council meeting will be Monday, March 23rd at 7:00pm.

THE WEEK IN REVIEW
Morris Lake was 18 inches below the top of the spillway on 3.9.15.

Interviews are continuing for the HR Director replacement.

We had a wonderful meeting with local student Riley Struble (age 9) this week as she brought forth some interesting ideas on how to get the children of Newton more involved in the community. Kerry will be working on some of Riley’s ideas. Good job Riley!

I visited the RPM offices in Montclair this week to discuss the status of the Newton senior housing project and applicable funding. Applications for same are due in July with funding announced in the fall.

Routine business discussed at the staff, safety, and administrative assistant meetings.

We are still working on the pro-forma and PILOT options for the Hicks Avenue Redevelopment Project.

Routine business discussed at the monthly Statewide Insurance meetings.

The Armory Conference Call was rescheduled to March 17th.

Have a great weekend! Let’s Go Rangers!

Yours for a Better Newton,
TSRJR