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Minutes of Commissioners Meeting   -   February 10, 2010

Note: Complete Meeting Appears on CD #03-10 and 04-10 on File in the Wildwood Crest, NJ Borough Clerk’s Office February 10, 2010
Wildwood Crest, NJ

Prior to the opening of the meeting, Mr. Groon led those present in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.

 

The meeting of the Board of Commissioners, Borough of Wildwood Crest, Cape May County , New Jersey , was held in the Municipal Court Room at 9:30 a.m.  On roll call the following answered to their names:

 

Gould - Cabrera – Groon – Yes

 

Mr. Groon read the following statement:  In compliance with the Open Public Meeting Act, Chapter 231, P.L. 1975, the notice requirements have been satisfied as to the time, place and date of holding said meeting by posting notice on the bulletin board in the Borough Hall and by mailing same to the Gazette-Leader, the Herald and The Press on October 23, 2009.

 

Mr. Groon next announced the one-way in and the one-way out method of ingress and egress in case of emergency.

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that Ordinance No. 1092 be placed on second reading and final passage by title only.

Vote:          Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING ORDINANCE BY TITLE ONLY:

ORDINANCE NO. 1092

BOND ORDINANCE APPROPRIATING $2,570,000, AND AUTHORIZING THE ISSUANCE OF $2,447,000 BONDS OR NOTES OF THE BOROUGH, FOR VARIOUS IMPROVEMENTS OR PURPOSES AUTHORIZED TO BE UNDERTAKEN BY THE BOROUGH OF WILDWOOD CREST, IN THE COUNTY OF CAPE MAY , NEW JERSEY .

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that a public hearing be held on Ordinance No. 1092.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

There being no public comments, Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the public hearing on Ordinance No. 1092 be closed.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that Ordinance No. 1092 be passed on second and final reading and advertised according to law.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that Ordinance No. 1093 be placed on second reading and final passage by title only.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING ORDINANCE B Y TITLE ONLY:

ORDINANCE NO. 1093

AN ORDINANCE AMENDING AND SUPPLEMENTING CHAPTER 46, OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES, OF THE CODE OF THE BOROUGH OF WILDWOOD CREST, TO INCLUDE ARTICLE VII, VOLUNTEER BOARD AND COMMISSION MEMBERS

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that a public hearing be held on Ordinance No. 1093.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

There being no public comments, Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the public hearing on Ordinance No. 1093 be closed.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that Ordinance No. 1093 be passed on second and final reading and advertised according to law.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 201-10

(Opposing Senate Bill S-458, regarding centralization of the Tax Collections, Assessments, and related municipal functions to the County)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 202-10

(Authorizing refund of a tax overpayment in the amount of $1,767.74 to Chase Bank for property situated at Block/Lot 99.02-1-C0406)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 203-10

(Authorizing refund of tax overpayment in the amount of $6,912.33 to Frank and Jessica Schimmel for property situated at Block/Lot 133.01-4)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 204-10

(Authorizing refund of tax overpayment in the amount of $9,081.45 to Archer & Greiner for property situated at Block/Lot 59.04-1)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 205-10

(Authorizing submission of grant application in the amount of $250,000 for the Community-Defined Solution to Violence Against Women Program, with -0- matching funds)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 206-10

(Authorizing issuance of a Special Events Permit to Ocean Drive Run Club, Inc. to hold a foot race on March 28, 2010 on Pacific Avenue )

 

Mr. Cabrera motioned, seconded by Mrs. Gould, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 207-10

(Authorizing issuance of a Special Events Permit to National Multiple Sclerosis Society to hold a bid ride on May 23, 2010 on Atlantic Avenue )

 

Mr. Cabrera motioned, seconded by Mrs. Gould, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 208-10

(Authorizing advertisement of Notice to Bidders for Sewer Jet/Catch Basin Cleaner with bid receipt on March 2, 2010)

 

Mr. Cabrera motioned, seconded by Mrs. Gould, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 209-10

(Authorizing the Tax Assessor to pursue and defend tax appeals on behalf of the Borough for CY2010)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 210-10

(Affirming Wildwood Crest’s support of and partnership with the 2010 Census)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 211-10

(Authorizing refund to Overpayment Recovery Services in the amount of $238.90 in conjunction with an ambulance transport overpayment for Janet Fitzgerald)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 212-10

(Authorizing the County of Cape May to serve as lead agency for the submission of a 2010-11 PARIS Grant Application)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 213-10

(Authorizing refund to Jeffrey Kline in the amount of $400 for ambulance transport overpayment)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 214-10

(Authorizing refund to Steven Thompson in the amount of $400 for ambulance transport overpayment)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

Mr. Cabrera motioned, seconded by Mrs. Gould, that all bills properly authorized, as submitted and which appear in full herein below, be paid.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

With regard to the Fern Road Park pavilion bids as well as the Rosemary Road bulkhead project, the Clerk reported that there was an indication that the funds would have an effective date of March 9, 2010 after consultation with the Chief Financial Officer. Therefore, an award of those bids could be made at that time based upon representations and documentation submitted by the Borough Engineer to reduce the scope of the project for the recreation facilities upgrades. Mr. Cabrera inquired if the projects could be awarded at the present time contingent upon the March 9, 2010 effective date of the funds. The Solicitor and the Clerk both responded that it could not be done. The Clerk added that a regular meeting of the governing body was scheduled for March 10, 2010 at which time both projects could be awarded. The Engineer indicated that both projects should be completed by Memorial Day.

 

With regard to the funding source and how payments are to be made regarding the beach grading project, the Clerk indicated that based upon the dollars involved he questioned whether it would be processed through the Engineer or a direct contract with the lowest bidder. Mr. Groon stated that nothing could be done until a determination is received from the Department of Environmental Protection regarding the emergency application. The Clerk stated that from a standpoint of having the work mandatorily completed prior to the start of the summer season must be included in any contract award and Solicitor would have to verify the emergency aspect.

 

Mr. Cabrera reported that the Recreation Commission met with regard to the planning assessment, and recommendations would be forthcoming from the Recreation Commission in that regard.

 

Mr. Groon reported that, concerning the Rambler Road Park project, if the Borough chooses to proceed, the plans would have to be finalized within the next two months. He indicated that there would be roughly a four month application process which would permit bidding in the fall prior to the grants expiring. He asked that the Commissioners reconsider the north end relocation of the bicycle stand and the gazebo. Mr. Cabrera indicated that he wanted to review the most recent set of plans prior to making a final determination. Mrs. Gould indicated that she has reviewed the plans and done a physical review of the location, and it was her opinion that the gazebo was a landmark in Wildwood Crest and should remain.

 

The Clerk outlined the reconfiguring of funding for the various projects as set forth by the Engineer, and asked the CFO if he would be able to certify availability of funds for the various items. The CFO responded that he would require cost estimates for all projects before he could certify availability of funds for any of the projects. He added that if there is not enough funding available to complete all five projects, the projects would have to be prioritized.

 

There being no public comments, and no further matters for discussion, THE CLERK READ THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION BY TITLE ONLY:

RESOLUTION NO. 215-10

(Closed session: potential litigation involving NJDEP)

 

Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the foregoing Resolution be adopted.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

Upon returning from closed session, Mr. Cabrera motioned, seconded by Mrs. Gould, that Lomax Consulting Group be authorized to submit an application to the NJDEP for an individual beach maintenance permit, and that the Mayor be authorized to be signatory thereon.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

The CFO appeared before the governing body to discuss the projects contained in Bond Ordinance No. 1092. He spoke to his memorandum presented earlier to the governing body regarding the debt being incurred by the Borough. He indicated that the nature of his memorandum was a warning to the governing body regarding the increasing debt of the Borough by over 100%. He added that the issue was that the Borough is required annually to provide a copy of the audit report to the rating agencies, who historically have rated the Borough’s debt as “moderate.” It was his concern that the increase in debt could change the Borough’s rating, and he urged the governing body to also be concerned.

 

The CFO was thanked for his statements, and was asked about the many emergencies incurred on a yearly basis and how to better financially prepare for those emergencies. It was added that the Engineer had recently provided a long list of pending emergencies. The CFO responded that the Borough can “afford” to do whatever is necessary, and he agreed that infrastructure improvements were necessary. He stressed that his concern was that the rating agencies do not know what the debt is for.

 

The statement was made that the goal was to annually spend in the mid-$2 millions on infrastructure and the CFO was asked if that was a reasonable goal financially. The CFO responded that if the Borough retires $2.5 million annually, and $2.5 million is authorized, some of which is to be pay as you go, the amount of debt will decrease. However, the CFO indicated that the levy cap law would impact any long term debt plan.

 

The CFO was once again asked if a budget of $2.5 million would be reasonable and slow down the debt. The CFO responded that it all depends upon what the governing body wants to present to the public in the form of taxation. The CFO was again asked for his position on whether a $2.5 million budget will slowly bring the Borough back into the norm. The CFO responded that it will bring the Borough back if the current structure of how $2.5 million is financed is not changed. He added that in his opinion that would be the right direction to go.

 

The Clerk inquired of the CFO as to whether the “red flag” would go up not in terms of dollars but in terms of how close the Borough would get to the 3.5% net debt limit. The CFO responded that the 3.5% goal is not necessarily a flag; however, the 3.5% is a limit whereby the municipality must go to the Local Finance Board for approval. He added that the Borough is not close to the 3.5% limit.

 

Richard Saad, 7701 Pacific Avenue , commented on the loss of electricity due to the major snow storm the previous weekend, and asked if the Borough had any idea when the electricity would be restored. Mr. Groon responded that he had spoken to a representative of Atlantic City Electric the previous day, and was advised that it would be a difficult process and, due to lack of personnel, would not commit to any type of schedule for any neighborhood. The Clerk interjected that he was scheduled for have a conference call later in the day to be hosted by Atlantic City Electric in which he would be conveying the Borough’s needs. He added that Atlantic City Electric had dedicated one-third of their entire work force (70 crews out of 200) to the Wildwoods. Mr. Saad asked that the Clerk convey to Atlantic City Electric that perhaps they could give consideration as to when the calls came into them (who went out first). The Clerk stated that that was a reasonable request and he would indicate that to Atlantic City Electric. Mr. Cabrera added that he has spoken to several of the electric company work crews, and they have indicated to him that it is much more complicated because the island is separated into grids and that can create a safety issue. Mrs. Gould added that the Wildwood Convention Center was available as a shelter for those who were without electricity.

 

Joe Lechner stated that he had spoken to the electric company and was told not to expect electric before the end of the week. He commented on that lack of maintenance and upgrading over the years in the area by the electric company. He also asked how the Borough would be communicating with the public as to what is being done. Mr. Cabrera stated that the only way would be through the internet or by calling Borough Hall. Mr. Lechner stated that he was unable to get through to anyone at Borough Hall and refused to leave a message on a voice mail. Mr. Groon stated that if he would leave a message, the call would be returned. The Clerk added that Borough Hall was receiving hundreds of calls. Mr. Lechner gave his telephone number, and asked that the Clerk contact him after the conference call with the electric company.

 

Another member of the audience asked for a number for the public to call, other than the electric company, to obtain information. The Clerk gave him the Borough Clerk’s telephone number.

 

There being no further public comments or discussion, Mrs. Gould motioned, seconded by Mr. Cabrera, that the meeting be adjourned.

Vote:               Gould-Cabrera-Groon-Yes

 

Dated:             February 24, 2010

                                                                        

Kevin M. Yecco, Borough Clerk

MINUTES OF MEETINGS INDEX