November 8, 2010


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 and The Star Ledger on January 5, 2010 and posted in the municipal building.


       Mayor Blair Bravo called the meeting to order at 8 p.m.



      All Council members were present. Councilman Happer and McWilliams arrived at 8:02 p.m.

      Also in attendance were Borough Manager Barry Lewis, Borough Attorney Marty Murphy,

      and Borough Clerk Christina Whitaker                                                                              .



The Mayor informed the Council that a survey done by Robert McDonald of Center Street indicated that he had 952 children as trick or treaters on Halloween. In the past few years there has been a significant increase in the number of children visiting houses in the Village section of the town on Halloween.

Mayor Bravo thanked the Police Department and DPW employees for keeping the streets clean and safe for the trick or treaters.

The Recreation Commission will discuss the increase of participating children before next year’s event.  Councilman Shaw said the special event on the night before Halloween went well but Recreation Director Celia Flynn said she would like to see more participation next year.


Councilman Jackson congratulated Mayor Bravo, Councilman Happer and Councilman Elect Peter Holmberg for winning the November election.


Councilman Shaw said the Herd Football Team ended its season undefeated. The Cross County men and women’s teams took their State Section Championships.



Mayor Bravo opened the public comment portion of the meeting with consent of the Council.


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


With no one wishing to be heard, Mayor Bravo closed the public comment portion of the meeting.






Mayor Bravo noted that pursuing shared services was one of the Council’s top priorities for 2010.


Councilman Shaw explained that the Shared Services Subcommittee objectives were different from those of the Citizen Task Force, which completed a town wide survey last year. As a result of the survey, the Council set three specific goals for 2010. Among them were the “review of shared service options for police, fire, public works, construction, recreation and other municipal services.” The Shared Services Subcommittee would also review the present shared services arrangement with the Board of Education and DPW and evaluate the merging of the Planning and Zoning Boards into a single Land Use Board.

Councilman Shaw noted that the Borough already have several shared service arrangements.


Councilman Shaw said the Subcommittee spent a great deal of time reviewing police issues because the cost of running the police department is the single highest cost in the municipal budget.


The Borough’s Fire Department is run by volunteers with the Borough purchasing vehicles and equipment. The Subcommittee did not feel there would be any significant savings to the Borough through a shared fire department.


Although the Borough currently has a shared service arrangement with the Mountain Lakes Board of Education to share the Public Works Director and other resources, the Subcommittee believes “that additional saving and efficiency opportunities may be identified through a comprehensive function and cost review of the DPW operations.”


It was determined by the Subcommittee that there was merit in exploring shared services in the Construction Department but agreed that the department is not a financial drain on the Borough because it is “revenue neutral.” However, better service might be achieved through an expanded office and inspection hours.


The Recreation program generates revenues through its recreation programs which offset a significant portion of the costs of those programs and the Subcommittee did not recommend pursuing shared recreation.


The merging of the Zoning and Planning Boards is usually necessary for smaller communities with little activities and even fewer volunteers. That has not been the case in Mountain Lakes. Most fees are covered by applicants. However, it is recommended that an escrow amount be collected with applications to the Zoning Board to cover review by Borough professionals.   


In conclusion the following recommendations were made by the Subcommittee.


·        Continues discussion and exploration of possible partial or complete shared police services with Boonton Township

·        Explore possible shared police services options with other neighboring municipalities, particularly focusing on possible partial night shift coverage and geographical jurisdiction contracting if legally permissible.






·        Review current operations and explore possible opportunities for outside contracting for discreet services.

·        Review existing staffing levels, particularly upon any retirement or departure from service, and evaluate cost effectiveness of full time year round staff replacements with part time seasonal staffing.

·        Engage the Board of Education in a comprehensive review of the existing shared services agreement to identify opportunities for restructuring outsourcing, or consolidation of operations to increase efficiency and service.



·        Review possible shared services with neighboring communities to expand office hours and convenience to the residents.


Motion by Councilman Jackson, second by Councilman McWilliams, to accept the Interim Report, with all members in favor signifying by “Aye.”


The Council agreed that zoning applications should include escrow money to cover any review by the Zoning Board Attorney or Borough Engineer.


The Mayor said she would like to have a formal letter from the Council sent to the Board of Education scheduling a meeting to discuss the shared services agreement with the Borough.


The Council directed Mr. Lewis to investigate any jurisdictional issues regarding shared police services, other possible shared services with the Board of Education and other outsourcing possibilities.


The Mayor noted that it would take some time to pursue the issues. However, Councilman Jackson and Mayor Bravo said they would like a status report from the Manager in February.  Councilmen Shaw and Happer said that it might not be enough time since the 2011 budget process would be in full force at that time.   



      R 119 Deferred Compensation Plan- pulled by Councilman Jackson

      R 121 Authorizing Transfer Appropriations

      R 122 Payment of Bills


       7. *MINUTES October 25, 2010   


Council Member






































































A.     Health Officer

B.     Construction Official

C.    DPW

E.   Police  



       Mr. Murphy had nothing to report.


      10. MANAGER’S REPORT (attached)

      Mr. Lewis said the meeting on the Cove project with the Centennial Committee was 

      productive and another meeting was schedule for November 15.


      The Manger addressed the issue of the Cobb Road signage and the sight line problems at

      the Boulevard and Powerville Road brought to his attention by Mr. Kanter at the previous



      Mr. Lewis updated the Council on well # 3 and the dams in his written report.



Councilman Jackson said the Personnel Committee would be meeting to discuss personnel benefit recommendations.


The Bulletin Board Committee has informed the Borough that it is having problems with maintaining a suitable number of members to handle posting notices on the board in front of the municipal building.                             



     On motion by Councilman Shaw, second by Councilman Happer, to adjourn the meeting at

     9:58 p.m., with all members in favor signifying by “Aye.”



*Consent Agenda




 Attest:___________________________                       _______________________

              Christina Whitaker, Clerk                                      Blair S. Bravo, Mayor