7:30 p.m.

M I N U T E S 



1.      CALL TO ORDER; OPENING STATEMENT:  This meeting is being held in compliance

with Public Law 1975, Chapter 231, Sections 4 and 13, as notice of this meeting and the agenda thereof had been reported to The Citizen and the Morris County Daily Record on January 6, 2009 and posted in the municipal building.


Mayor Stephen Shaw called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.



All Council members were present except for Deputy Mayor Gormally, who arrived at

7:31 p.m. Also in attendance were Borough Attorney Marty Murphy, Borough Manager Joe Tempesta, and Deputy Registrar Michele Reilly, filling in for Borough Clerk Christina Whitaker.



         Resolution 56-09

WHEREAS, the Borough Council of the Borough of Mountain Lakes, County of

Morris, State of New Jersey finds it necessary to discuss matters relating to,


·         Attorney – Client Privilege / Settlement – Trash Bag Agreement

·         Tax Appeal – King of Kings Property


WHEREAS, the Borough Council believes it to be in the best interest of the public to discuss such matters in closed session.


NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Borough Council of the Borough of Mountain Lakes, that it shall enter Executive Session to discuss only those matters mentioned above; the results of which will be disclosed when the matters are resolved and upon vote of the Governing Body to release the minutes.


Motion by Councilman Gormally, second by Councilwoman Wilson, to enter into Executive 

Session, with all members in favor signifying by “Aye.”


Motion by Councilwoman Wilson, second by Councilman Jackson, to close the Executive

Session and return to the public portion of the meeting at 8 p.m., with all members in favor

signifying by “Aye.”



Mayor Shaw congratulated the men’s & women’s swim teams, as both are sectional champs. Mayor Shaw also thanked those who assisted the Borough with the recent power issues.



Councilman McWilliams pointed out that several surrounding towns helped the Borough including Boonton, Boonton Township, Denville, and Rainbow Lakes. He said that the action on the part of the other municipalities was an excellent example of how mutual aid works. There were four homes affected by the power surge with one condo fire, but no injuries were reported.  He commended all the first responders.



 Mayor Shaw explained the Council’s policy of limiting each speaker to five (5) minutes and no yielding of time to another person.


 Mayor Shaw explained that the agenda tonight would cover the current budget appropriations, with the capital budget & utilities to be discussed at the March 9th meeting. The Council would like to introduce the 2009 Budget at the March 23rd meeting.


 Mayor Shaw opened the public comment portion of the meeting with the consent of the



 Fred Kanter –Hanover Road.

 Mr. Kanter expressed his displeasure with some members of the Council and the former

 Borough Manager.


With no one else wishing to be heard, Mayor Shaw closed the public comment portion of the



6.         2009 MUNICIPAL BUDGET

·         Legal 

·         Engineering

·         Construction

·         Recreation

·         Library 

·         Courts

·         Boards, Commissions, Committees

·         Water and Sewer Utilities


Mayor Shaw recognized Mr. Moody, the President of the Library Board of Trustees. Mr. Moody explained that the library is a free public library and not a municipal library and therefore the operating budget is lower than if it were Borough owned. This meant that there was a savings to the Borough. He explained that the Library Board believed the budget as presented was reasonable and asked the Council to accept it as submitted. If the library goes over its budget the additional money would be recouped from its own funds. Mr. Chris Sullivan, a library board member, also spoke on behalf of the library budget.



Councilwoman Wilson asked what the legal expenses were in reference to fair share housing, and Mr. Tempesta explained the money would be used in connection with COAH, if necessary.



Mr. Tempesta said Borough Engineer Bill Ryden was charged to several different areas in the budget and that there was no increase in his hourly costs for 2009.  Mr. Ryden and Kimball & Kimball are expected to play a big part in the Highlands/COAH review. The Borough has submitted an application for $50,000 maximum reimbursement for its COAH fees, and hopes to receive some of the grant money.


 Planning Board

The Planning Board attorney’s contract was changed to billable hours versus retainer. This has resulted in a savings as the attorney was not needed in January and February.



Money was budgeted for the author of the Centennial book.


Zoning Board of Adjustment

Mr. Tempesta said the Zoning Board of Adjustment has seen more activity compared to the Planning Board. Councilman Jackson commented on the decrease in the zoning officer’s salary, and Mr. Tempesta said that it was a direct result of personnel changes made last year.


Construction Office

Mr. Tempesta said there would be no increase in salary for certain officials due to lack of activity. Councilman Happer had some questions on the salary structure, hours, and number of employees, which was explained by Mr. Tempesta. Councilman Jackson discussed cutting back hours and/or resizing the department but Mr. Tempesta explained it was too early in the year to do that as activity might pick up.



Mr. Tempesta explained the Borough did well with the Joint Insurance Fund because the costs actually went down. Also the health insurance cost increase was reasonable.


Board of Health

Mr. Tempesta reminded the Council that some of our Health Services are combined with the Township of Montville. The Borough is also in the process of renegotiating public health services with Montville since the Borough’s public health nurse has left to work in the private sector.


Environmental Commission

The budget has stayed fairly flat. Councilwoman Emr said the Borough is looking for grant money. Mayor Shaw said grant money might be available from one of the modules as the Borough participates with COAH/Highlands.


Woodlands Committee

This is a new line item for the budget. Councilwoman Emr asked if the budget included the cost of pesticides for the removal of invasive vegetation. She asked if volunteers would be required to have pesticide licenses. Mr. Tempesta said it was possible the Committee may have already talked to Mr. Prusina, because there are DPW employees that have the necessary licenses. Councilwoman Wilson explained that the Woodlands project included work for the future, and its project with the High School would help the Borough with the aging tree canopy.


 55 Plus

Councilman Jackson said the Council needed an accounting on how the money was being spent.  Mr. Tempesta said he would get more information for the next meeting.



Councilman Happer asked if the Borough had looked at other options for telephones. According to Chief Financial Officer Dana Mooney, the Borough did this about five (5) years ago. Mayor Shaw thought it should be reviewed again. Councilman Gormally asked about the line item for police and fire, and Mr. Tempesta explained this was in reference to the mobile data terminals, cell phones, and landlines. Councilman Jackson also asked about the new gas monitoring system, which Mr. Tempesta explained was working after a few glitches.



Mr. Tempesta explained that the budget fully funds these two accounts. Although there has been discussion in the press about only funding 50%, Mr. Tempesta said he still recommended putting aside the money that was due. The Council supported his decision.



Councilwoman Emr asked about the line item for the prosecutor. Chief Financial Officer Mooney explained this was in a different part of the budget.



Councilman Jackson asked Recreation Director Celia Flynn about the ten percent (10%) increase for parks and beaches in her budget. Ms. Flynn explained that the difficulty the Borough had last year in staffing lifeguard positions was because lifeguards are in high demand and other private clubs pay higher wages. Councilman Jackson also asked for information regarding summer recreation and the trust accounts. Councilwoman Emr asked about the assistant beach director line item, and Ms. Flynn explained Ms. Conlan is not retiring yet so there will not be a need to train a new Beach Director now.


Water & Sewer

Deputy Treasurer Kenny Huelbig explained the Borough had reallocated costs for energy to 80% current fund, 10% water and 10% sewer. The Borough had a cash-operating deficit for water and sewer, which had to be raised in full. Mr. Tempesta spoke about the excellent job the Borough does in water conservation. He said the Borough was using less water today then ten (10) years ago, however, this means revenues are down. Also, the DPW has worked hard to repair and stop leaks. Councilman Jackson asked for a spreadsheet of water usage. Mr. Tempesta said more information regarding utilities would be forthcoming at the next meeting.


Mr. Tempesta spoke about the areas where the Borough was able to make cuts, such as lakes management and some police items. Councilman Happer asked about the current fund surplus, and was curious as to what caused the decrease. Mr. Tempesta said the increase in tax appeals and raising the reserve for uncollected taxes were contributing factors.


Councilman Jackson asked whether or not other members of Council would support asking the Library Board to decrease the four percent (4%) raise to three percent (3%). The majority of Council members supported the four percent (4%) raise.


Councilwoman Wilson indicated she felt Borough Manager Joe Tempesta should receive an increase. Councilman Jackson said the Personnel Committee should discuss the matter.


Mayor Shaw asked members of the Council how they felt about the budget as presented. The majority of Council members were comfortable with the current budget figures as long as State aid remained the same.



R54-09 Award of Contract/Lake Management Treatment

R55-09 Payment of Bills



 February 9, 2009 – Regular


 Councilwoman Wilson made some changes to the minutes regarding the date of the Fire

 Department Pancake Breakfast.


Council Member
























































                    Consent Agenda Vote















Mr. Murphy addressed the Ippolitto matter, which was brought before the Council at the last meeting. He spoke to the Ippolitto’s attorney, who was going to do title searches and then contact Mr. Murphy. There was a discussion on what it meant to vacate a paper road.  Mr. Murphy explained that it meant there was no public interest in the road. Mr. Murphy will report again on the matter at the next meeting.



The Manager’s memo regarding power outages was discussed earlier in the meeting. Mr. Tempesta addressed the question of liability for volunteers. He spoke to a representative from the JIF, and was told that any committee created by and for the Borough was covered under its liability provision.


The Council discussed creating a policy on the use of power equipment; i.e. power saws, etc.


Mr. Tempesta said JCP&L has been contacted regarding the lights at the train station, and    the issue is being addressed. A survey of the town has indicated that many streetlights are out. In addition, the lanyard was repaired at Memorial Park and the Pickwick Lane Street sign was fixed.



 Resignation of Ralph Loveys/Planning Board


 Citizen of the Year Award

 Janice Hunts Award


Motion by Councilwoman Wilson, second by Councilwoman Emr, to appoint Jim Bailey as the first alternate to the Planning Board and Martin Kane as the second alternate, with all members in favor signifying by “Aye”. Peter Holmberg and Paul Selver have been moved from alternate to Class 4 positions.



Councilman Jackson said Andy and Peggy Bulfer will continue as co-chairs of the HPC for the time being.


Web Site Committee

Councilman Jackson said Andy Bulfer will continue to chair the Web Site Committee.


55 Plus

Councilman McWilliams had nothing to report on Fifty-Five Plus.


Joint Ordinance Committee

Councilman McWilliams said the Joint Ordinance Committee was very close to bringing something to the Council.


Recreation Commission

Councilman Happer said the Commission had a speaker from Stanford University regarding training coaches, which he found very interesting.


Woodlands Committee

Councilwoman Wilson said the Woodlands Committee reviewed its program for the year, as well as the tree-planting program at the High School.



Mayor Shaw said the COAH/Highlands Committee met twice and was working with the town engineer and planner on module 1.


Deputy Mayor Gormally asked about the break-ins which recently occurred in the Borough.  Mr. Tempesta said Chief Tovo informed him about them today, and they are all under investigation.



Motion by Deputy Mayor Gormally, second by Mayor Shaw, to adjourn the meeting at

10:47 p.m., with all members in favor signifying by “Aye”.


*Consent Agenda





___________________________                            _____________________

Joseph Tempesta, Deputy Clerk                              Stephen H. Shaw, Mayor