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A REGULAR WORK SESSION OF THE VILLAGE COUNCIL OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD HELD VIA ZOOM, DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, ON OCTOBER 7, 2020 AT 7:30 P.M.

 

  1. CALL TO ORDER – OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT – ROLL CALL – FLAG     SALUTE

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon called the meeting to order at 7:30 P.M. and read the Statement of Compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act.  At roll call the following were present: Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh.  Also present were Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk; Donna Jackson, Deputy Village Clerk; and Matthew Rogers, Village Attorney.  Mayor Knudsen was absent.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon led those in attendance in the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag as well as in a Moment of Silence for all of our Servicemen and women and First Responders.

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

There were no comments from the public.

 

  1. MANAGERS REPORT

 

Voter Registration – Ms. Mailander stated that the last day to register to vote for the November election is Tuesday, October 13th.   Up until that time, you can come to register to vote at the Village Clerk’s Office or at the County Superintendent of Elections Office in Hackensack.  On October 13th the Village Hall will be open from 8:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. in the Village Clerk’s Office taking voter registration and then in the Public Library lobby from 4:30 P.M. to 9:00 P.M.  As long as you register by 9:00 P.M. on October 13th you will be able to vote in the November 3rd election.  You can also register to vote online at www.state.nj.us/stateelectionsvoterregistration.  All updated election information is on the Village website under the tile that says Election Information.  There is a video there that shows you how to fill out your mail-in ballot, and there is information about how you can vote on election day.  Just as a reminder, only those who are blind, illiterate, or those who cannot fill out a mail-in ballot, are those who can use an ADA machine in the polling location.  If you are able to fill it out, you will not be able to vote in the machine.  However, if you go to the polling location and do not have your mail-in ballot with you, they will give you a paper ballot to vote there at the polling place.

 

Leaf Collection – Ms. Mailander stated that a yellow postcard with the leaf collection schedule has been mailed to every household.  Leaf collection is done in four areas and will begin on October 19th.  Please remember that the dates on the postcard are the dates when you put your leaves out and then crews come after those dates.  If those dates that are indicated on the postcard have passed, do not put out any more leaves until the next set of dates.  Biodegradable leaf bags are available to Ridgewood residents at the Recycling Center while supplies last.  There are further details posted on the website.

 

Welcome Back to Ridgewood, New Jersey – Ms. Mailander stated that Welcome Back to Ridgewood events continue and includes outdoor dining and free music all day Saturday and Sunday on East Ridgewood Avenue from Broad Street to Walnut Street and the side streets of Oak, Chestnut, and Prospect Streets are closed to make a pedestrian mall.  In addition, the West Village over by the train station area has some wonderful shops and eateries and they also will have live music.  She encouraged visitors to enjoy this great event for the next few weeks.

 

Shredding Event – Ms. Mailander stated that the shredding event is on November 14th from 9:00 A.M. to 12:30 P.M. so it gives you time to get together all of the things you want to shred.  It will be done at the Graydon Pool parking lot.  You can watch your documents on camera as they are securely shredded.  This is free to Ridgewood residents and businesses.  You are limited to five cardboard boxes and no plastic bags.

 

Book Recycling Program – Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has a book recycling program.  Book donations can be dropped off at the Recycling Center.  Books must have a bar code so they can be scanned and Ridgewood will receive 15% of the sales.

 

Hudson Street Garage – Ms. Mailander stated that the first floor is open for business.  The cost is $1.00 per hour to be paid at the kiosk at the Hudson Street entrance and is a three hour limit.

 

Bergen County Utilities Authority – Ms. Mailander stated that the Household Hazardous Waste Collection is Sunday, October 18th from 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. at Bergen Community College.  You do need ID to show you are a Bergen County resident.

 

Election Signs – Ms. Mailander stated that election signs can only be placed on your own property.  They cannot be placed in the planting strip or on any public property.

 

ACCESS Ridgewood 20 – Ms. Mailander stated that the annual ACCESS Ridgewood 20 is scheduled for this week.  It will take place virtually through various platforms.  There are lots of activities to embrace our abilities, disabilities, special gifts, and special needs.  Which is a Netflix party, Crip Camp, senior workshop, disability visibility author event.  There will be a virtual fashion show and a virtual interfaith service.  Details are posted on the Ridgewood Library website.

 

Columbus Day – Ms. Mailander stated that Monday, October 12th is Columbus Day and all Village offices are closed.  There will be no recycling or garbage pickup, and the Recycling Center is also closed.

 

Upcoming Village Council Meetings – Ms. Mailander stated that the upcoming Village Council meetings are all televised live and are on Zoom.  October 14th at 8:00 P.M. is a Public Meeting, October 28th at 7:30 P.M. is a Work Session, and November 4th is a Work Session at 7:30 P.M.

 

  1. COUNCIL REPORTS

 

Planning BoardCouncilwoman Reynolds stated that the Planning Board met last night.  They listened to four applications under the Historic Preservation Review.  They were Sombrero Taqueria on Oak Street, Nueva Criatura Salon at 30 Wilsey Square, Dea European Café at 9 South Broad Street, and Christie’s International Real Estate at 50 West Ridgewood Avenue.  All four were for signs, one of them also was for painting the façade.  They have recommended all of them to the Village Council.

 

The big application last night was Hopper Ridge Condominium Associations on Durar Avenue.  This is a very large undertaking.  They have hundreds and hundreds of feet of landscape ties that are deteriorating and something has to hold it up.  The intention is to put up stone walls and it is going to be a very big project.  It was carried to October 20th for continuation.

 

Citizen Safety Advisory Committee – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that the next Citizen Safety Advisory Committee meeting would be held next Thursday at 7:30 P.M. in the Youth Center.

 

Fields Committee – Councilwoman Walsh stated that she had her Fields Committee meeting yesterday.  They have an abbreviated Fall schedule going on right now and then they are going to have an abbreviated Winter season.  The Winter season will start December 3rd and will go through until Presidents Day.

 

The Village and Recreation Facilities have been experiencing vandalism and it is unfortunately becoming an issue.  Apparently, there was a port-a-john by the Brookside Field that was burned to the ground.  They believe that maybe there was an accelerant put on it and there is nothing left of the port-a-john.  Another port-a-john was thrown into the river. 

 

There have been teens under the bleachers at the high school vandalizing and involved in other activities.  There was damage to the backstop.  There is nuisance and some damage on Maple Field.  They understand that these teens and children need to get out and stretch their legs, but as a Village we cannot have anyone vandalizing our facilities.  It costs all of us in the end when that happens and they are actively seeking these vandals.  They want to make sure that our facilities are kept safe for everyone but also that we don’t have any issues.  They did have some problems over by the right of way as well.

 

Councilwoman Walsh stated that the Maple Park lighting is moving along.  The foundations have been poured and five towers are up.  They are working on the electrical lines and then there is an additional tree trimming that they have to perform to make sure they have clearance when they start setting the lights to the field.

 

They have five summer camps that have already shown interest for next year.  They are hoping to start planning the Spring schedule.  All of the Fall maintenance is being done on the fields right now.

 

Stigma Free – Councilwoman Walsh stated that they meet on the 14th.

 

Parks and Recreation – Councilwoman Walsh stated that they meet the following week as well.

 

Green Ridgewood – Councilwoman Perron stated that Green Ridgewood met on October 1st.  They are starting to watch the Planning Board meetings because there is so much overlap with land use and environmental issues.  Their next meeting is November 5th at 7:00 P.M. with a presentation on Renewable Energy.  The meeting is open to the public, anyone interested in joining can contact her and she will make sure they get the link.

 

Open Space – Councilwoman Perron stated that Open Space has not met since their last meeting.   Their next meeting is October 15th at The Stable at 7:00 P.M., in person and socially distanced.

 

Chamber of Commerce – Councilwoman Perron stated that the Chamber of Commerce has not met since the last Village Council meeting.  The Chamber will meet October 14th.

 

Central Business District Advisory Committee – Councilwoman Perron stated that CBDAC are meeting every two weeks now, and on October 1st the big topic of discussion was how to keep the town alive during the winter.  That was a big topic of discussion.  They also discussed Grab and Go and Downtown for the Holidays.  They submitted a budget request to the Finance Department for the coming year and put out a request for quotes.  They have a concept in place to market the Central Business District to potential tenants who come to the four new multi-family housing complexes.  They put it out to several graphic designers and they got back four quotes.  They have submitted the results to the Village Manager and to the Finance Department and that will come up for Village Council discussion on October 28th.

 

Their next meeting is October 15th at 8:30 A.M. via Zoom.  They will have some interesting speakers from the Board of Directors of Downtown New Jersey, which is an organization that seeks to invigorate downtowns.  It is open to the public, so anyone who would like to join should let her know.

 

Shade Tree Commission – Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that the Shade Tree Commission will meet next Tuesday at 7:30 P.M. via Zoom.

 

Green Team – Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that the Green Team met last week, but the Village Council had interviews for Boards and Committees scheduled at the same time, so he was unable to attend that meeting.

 

Boards and Committees – Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that the interviews for Boards and Committees was a long process, over two days, but there seemed to be a lot of interest out there.  There were more people who applied for positions than there were positions available, so it made the decisions a little bit more difficult to make.  The new members will be appointed this evening.

 

  1. DISCUSSION

             

  1. Parking

 

  1. Extend Pilot Program for Grab and Go Spaces

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the Grab and Go Pilot Program ended on October 3rd, and Councilwoman Perron would explain what Phase II is all about.  Councilwoman Perron stated that Phase II would be from October 9th through November 9th.  They would continue with the price of $75 per week, so in total, merchants or sponsors would have to pay in advance $300.  They have put that out through the Guild, the Chamber, and other outlets including CBDAC.  Applications are due in by Friday.  She added that she doesn’t think they will be allocating a spot on Walnut Street as that does not seem to be as well used as North Broad, Oak, and Chestnut.  She added that she thinks they should move a spot over from Wilsey Square to one of those three blocks on the east side of the tracks.

 

Councilwoman Perron added that she thinks that at the end of this four week period, they should add a proposition that she received from the business community that spots could be bought for six months, from November 9th through May 9th, for $1,500.  That works out to about $62 per week per spot, and that would be during the winter months.  She spoke to Mr. Rooney about it and he is willing to hear the thoughts of the Village Council.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that they have enough time to discuss it at the next work session and to come to a resolution if they were going to keep this going forward and what form it was going to take.  Councilwoman Perron agreed, and added that for safety reasons they moved one spot on Oak Street from the corner where Raymond’s is, over to the other side of the street.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that if they were going to move a spot from Walnut to somewhere else, could they get a spot on Broad near Sook, because people are always parking illegally near there and running into Sook or Bamboo House.  If there was a legal Grab and Go spot, hopefully that would be better.  Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that he would like to see a spot there too, but this discussion came up in a previous meeting and it was determined that it would be unsafe. 

 

Sergeant Chuck stated that their issue isn’t that a parallel parking spot is the best spot, however, there are no other available spots on Broad Street.  So, you need to choose a spot with the available space in front of it which would be in front of the kids haircut place.  Councilwoman Walsh asked if they could put one in the garage.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they wouldn’t need one, as other than Friday or Saturday nights, there is ample parking in the garage.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked about the area of Café 37.  Sergeant Chuck stated that there are nine different options that they could pick over there, adding that besides the convenience of parking near those restaurants and getting the food, there isn’t any lack of parking in that area.  They are really feeding to the convenience of the residents more than a parking shortfall, so if they wanted to add a spot there it could be wherever they want.  Ms. Mailander stated that she would recommend that it would be on the side of Sook and Bamboo House because it seems like that is where people are going quickly and then parking on the crosswalk.  She added that crossing that street can be treacherous especially since it is getting darker earlier.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that he was going to suggest the parking spot in front of Sook because the person could swoop in with the extra space from the crosswalk and swoop out.  Sergeant Chuck stated that spot is already occupied by the restaurant area.  He added that there is a 2/3rds area for a car to squeeze into between the crosswalk and that is what people are trying to take advantage of.  He added that the Police Department put cones up to push that process away which he thinks has had a good response and is better than ticketing people.  That crosswalk doesn’t have a habit of bad pedestrian car interactions, so if they wanted to be as safe as possible for the restaurant pickup they would be on the other side of the Sook eating area which would be down by the haircut place.  He added that they could try to get PSE&G to do some light enhancements on that intersection and try parking on Hudson Street facing there, or the garage has ample space right now except for Fridays and Saturdays.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she thought it made sense not to make people use the crosswalk.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she thought they should put one space in the garage regardless because if it is going to get people into the garage.  If they are going to park, it is probably better to encourage that.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that if they could do two she didn’t have a problem with that.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that someone suggested an idea to her today but she knows that Mr. Rooney doesn’t like very much.  What if when you push the start button on the kiosks in the garage and it says “Would you like 15 minutes free?”  Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that maybe they could try a spot on Broad Street and then a spot in the garage, but he would definitely see what they could do with PSE&G to get light enhancements on the crosswalk as they do have documented issues there.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked what the price would be if they were going to do the 6 month period.  Councilwoman Perron stated that it was posed to her as $1,500 per spot for six months, and the 15 spots being on Oak, Chestnut, and North Broad.  That works out to $62 per spot per week.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that wouldn’t include if they added in the two new spots.  Councilwoman Perron stated that it really depends on who wants to buy the spots, so they almost don’t have anything to lose.  Ms. Mailander stated that they just have to make it clear that if for some reason some of those spots are filled with snow that they would not get a refund for the times it is not accessible.  She added that it won’t happen that often, and they do clear the CBD usually at night after the storm, but just in case, they do have to make it clear that there are no refunds.  Councilwoman Perron stated that makes the one in the garage look really attractive.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that if they want to use the garage, that one should be at a premium, because in bad weather a car could go in and out, so they might want to think about a different price for that one.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she foresees those spots being more in demand in the winter.  Right now, people are still eating outside but COVID is obviously going to continue through the winter, people are going to do much more take out, and those spots are going to be cranking.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that they would explore a spot in the parking garage and a spot on Broad Street, and then if they were all in agreement, they would extend the pilot program until past the next Village Council meeting when they can figure out what they are going to do with this.  Ms. Mailander stated that they have a resolution tonight to consider, which will go from October 9th to November 7th, then Phase III would be the six month and they do have time to discuss that at their future work session.  Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that they could come together at the next meeting hopefully knowing what they want to do.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if for this coming month they were going to do in the garage and on South Broad Street, as she thought that would be an interesting experiment.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she thought so, too.  Councilwoman Perron added that they had already put out the advertising and it is too close to the date to try it.  Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that was something to think about also as part of the next discussion they were going to have on this at the next work session.  Sergeant Chuck added that as the weather gets colder they are probably going to start breaking down those outdoor dining areas so they may be able to take advantage of closer spots. 

 

  1. Train Station Parking Lot

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this was the suggestion from the previous meeting, that they allow people without parking stickers or permits to park in the Train Station lot for as long as they want as long as they pay during the regular metered hours.  There is a resolution on tonight’s special public meeting for that.  It is different than the rest of the Central Business District, the hours are from 6:00 A.M. to 8:00 P.M., Monday through Friday, and then 10:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M. on Saturday.  Anyone parking there would have to pay either by having a hangtag, Parkmobile, or pay at the kiosk.  They would no longer require a Ridgewood Resident sticker, so anyone from anywhere could park there.  Right now it is fairly empty because people are not commuting into New York City.

 

Councilwoman Walsh stated that she thought they should put an expiration date of 12/31/20, just so that they have the ability to revisit it.  They are hoping that things will subside a little and that they will have people taking the train to work, but they just don’t know if that is going to happen.  Her guess is that they aren’t going to have many people buying the permits, so if that isn’t the case they could at least continue to get revenue in that lot. 

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that the resolution says “until further notice.”  Ms. Mailander said that was correct.  Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that he thought that was good because it allowed them to go back and review.  He added that it was a good suggestion, and thanked Councilwoman Walsh for suggesting it.

 

  1. Budget

 

  1. Vehicle Defeating Barriers – Police Department

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they are bringing this back to the Village Council.  As they discussed last time, it is the lowest of three written quotes, and will allow them to configure these barriers easily.  If an emergency vehicle had to get it they can be moved easily.  The cost is $43,986 for 78 metal barrier units, which work with some that the Police Department already has.

 

Sergeant Chuck stated that there had been a question about the linear footage, and through learning how to use them during the downtown promenade, they break them down into ten foot sections which is about six pieces each.  Then they have a three to four foot gap in between the sections which invites people to walk through them as they go into the downtown area.  So, it doesn’t exactly add up if you do the math to close off all the areas, but it really does when you include those gaps. 

 

Sergeant Chuck stated that this would also help them tremendously with set up and clean up.  Physically putting up the barriers on Saturday and Sunday is only taking a couple of hours, but filling up the water barriers is taking twice as long.  So, they are going to save a lot of man hours on the back end and won’t have to bring in the Water Department and the DPW employees.  This was a request towards the beginning of the promenade project and he thinks as it has grown, the result will be better looking, will keep the areas much safer, and is definitely going to be economical in terms of time.

 

Ms. Mailander added that this is being paid out of a funding source that they are then going to go to FEMA and the New Jersey CARES Act for reimbursement under COVID expenses.  If they wait until the Spring they wouldn’t have the opportunity to request this reimbursement.  She added that these would have many uses, and they do prevent cars from going through.  They could also be used for leaf season when they block off roads during the use of heavy machinery.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that was an important consideration, and asked in terms of FEMA and CARES were they reimbursing dollar for dollar.  Ms. Mailander stated that if they get money from FEMA, they get 75% and then the other 25% would go to CARES.  If they get no money from FEMA, CARES will pay what they feel is proper.  Councilwoman Perron asked if getting these barriers would obviate the need for using dumpsters entirely.  Sergeant Chuck said yes.  Ms. Mailander added that would be a good thing, too.  Sergeant Chuck stated that changing over to the orange barriers would even be better, but these are going to look even cleaner.  On average, they do about 15 to 20 downtown events a year, and they will have 20 to 30 years to use these barriers for these events.

 

Councilwoman Walsh stated that she was in town for the Senior class fundraiser and she noticed that the barriers were on East Ridgewood Avenue.  She counted them, and it looked like there were about seven per lane of traffic, so it would be about 14 to block a road.  Sergeant Chuck stated that East Ridgewood Avenue has three sets of six or seven as it is slightly larger than some of the other roads.  Councilwoman Walsh asked that based on what Sergeant Chuck has proposed, that would be enough for about five streets, and they wouldn’t be using the water barricades anymore and they would be completely replaced.  Sergeant Chuck stated that almost everything they have now, they would replace with the yellow barriers.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked what they would do with the water barriers.  Sergeant Chuck stated that those are gold right now, as every Department tries to use them during the week, so there is plenty of work for those.  Ms. Mailander asked if the Village Council was in consensus to move forward with this resolution, to which the Village Councilmembers replied yes.

 

  1. Policy

 

  1. Continuation of Welcome Back to Ridgewood, NJ Event

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the event was technically going to end last weekend and they thought it was important that the Village Council be involved in deciding when it would end.  The proposal is for it to end October 31st/November 1st.  After that time it is probably going to be colder.  It may be that if it happens to be warmer weather in November, perhaps they will continue it.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds was in agreement.  Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that he thought it made sense to extend it to that point, and then if it stays warm they could make a decision.

 

Ms. Mailander added that they are keeping the pedestrian mall open on Monday, Columbus Day as it would be a three day weekend.

 

  1. Operations

 

  1. Update on NJDOT Decision – Warren Avenue/Glenwood Road

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they couldn’t discuss this yet as they were waiting to hear back from the Chief of Staff for the Commissioner who has been contacted three times and they have yet to hear back.  Hopefully they will hear back soon and do some kind of resolution after speaking to that Chief of Staff.

 

At 8:24 P.M., Councilwoman Perron made a motion to suspend the Work Session and go to a Special Public Meeting.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. SPECIAL PUBLIC MEETING - SEE SEPARATE MINUTES

 

At 8:29 P.M., Councilwoman Perron made a motion to adjourn the Special Public Meeting and reconvene the Work Session.   Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. PRESENTATION

 

  1. Elks Club Design

 

Rich Calbi stated that they had with them tonight Ben Attenborough and Ralph Walker, the two principles from RSC Architects that have been working on the new design for the Elks Club Renovation.  They are going to show the Village Council their progress.  They have been meeting since August, developing floor plans, renderings, the façade, and layout.  The goal tonight is to walk through those drawings, and to show some site plan alternatives.  The hope is to get the Village Council’s feedback to go to a Planning Board meeting on October 20th and do their informal review and keep this project moving.

 

Mr. Walker stated that he was going to share a presentation, and the first image that they were going to see is Maple Avenue with Village Hall, the Library, and the former Elks Club building with the façade improvements that they were proposing.  They have been working closely with Mr. Calbi and the Department in terms of the planning.  The upper floor has a street entrance where customers can come in to pay bills, and then within that they have the Department itself.  On the lower level, it is designed around the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) offices as well as the lab itself.  There is a multi-purpose education area adjacent to the lab with a viewing area.  He added that the project relocates all of the necessary functions including both equipment and personnel.

 

Mr. Walker stated that in terms of the design, they have been careful about trying to work within the language of both the Library and the Municipal Building.  The improvements that they are looking at for the exterior of the building are really meant to emulate the other municipal buildings in the area.  They are thinking of constructing a small portico across the front, doing some street improvements, including some landscaping, and adding a few windows, and then doing a brick frontage.  On the rear of the building, they will have a small entrance, along with new windows, stucco, and roof.

 

Mr. Walker stated that they were looking at different site options, and there has been some communication with the Police Department and Fire Department on how to deal with the parking layout.  They are only looking for onsite parking for staff, with a one way drive off Maple Avenue that would allow people to come down the hill and then egress into the Municipal parking area behind it.  They do have an area for the shared generator between the Library and the new Water Department, and then some parking areas for the staff at the rear of the building.  Mr. Walker stated that they were looking at a few different configurations, with one of them preferred.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that this was the first time she was seeing the parking.  She said it sounded like all of the spots behind the Water Department would be for employees, so a resident visiting the Water Department would have to park in the Library parking lot and then walk over.  Mr. Walker stated that there is also street parking along the frontage, there are currently three spots on North Maple Avenue directly in front, and for anyone just visiting the Water Department, they would be encouraged to use those spots first.  If you were going to both the Library and Water Department, it would make sense to park in the Municipal lot.  The access is an improved egress for this facility, in case of emergency in terms of getting in and out.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked if someone parked in the Library parking lot and walked through where there is a one way for a car to get through, is there going to be a sidewalk there.  Mr. Walker stated that they hadn’t planned for a pedestrian path to travel there, but there is certainly room to accommodate one.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she thought that was important for safety.  Mr. Walker stated that it was unlikely that they were going to have a high density of traffic, but he thinks to her point that they might have a couple of people on occasion who are going that way, so better to be safe than sorry.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon asked if there was going to be a spot or two on the street in front of the building, so if there were visitors who come in they could park there.  Mr. Walker stated that there are three spots currently that are directly in front before you get to the curb cut.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she didn’t think there were any spots in front of the Elks Club now.  Mr. Walker stated that nothing is striped right now, but there is the width and the frontage for three full spots.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked if they needed to get approval for three spots.  Mr. Walker stated that was why they needed to go before the Planning Board.  Mr. Attenborough stated that it would be a continuation of parking along that side of the street that is in front of the other Municipal Buildings.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she realized that, but that was a very busy corridor and she didn’t know if adding three spots in the street was going to be a safety issue.  Mr. Walker stated that they would look at it with the Planning Board but there was certainly adequate width for a parking lane in that area.  Ms. Mailander added that it would slow traffic down because it is a little bit narrower.

 

Mr. Calbi stated that one of the considerations that they talked about in an earlier meeting was to maybe sign these spots with a time limit so that they would be expressly available for the customers.  Councilwoman Reynolds agreed, adding that she could see people parking there and going to the Library.  Sergeant Chuck added that all of the parking spots on Maple Avenue are designated one hour, so this would just be a continuation.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that she loves the idea that the portico echoes the Library and Village Hall, but it is a one story building and she wondered how they calculate the proportion of that portico as it strikes her as a little large for the size of the building.  Mr. Walker stated that architecturally they were looking to create a reasonable proportion between the portico, existing façade, and the new location.  He explained in detail how they proportioned the portico using planters and the beltway surrounding the building.  He realizes that this is truly an application on a building that wasn’t designed in a classical way, but proportionally when you take into consideration the exterior features, and what they intend to do, he thinks it comes together very handsomely.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if there would be solar panels on the roof.  Mr. Walker stated that they haven’t considered it to date only from a budgetary standpoint, but it is certainly something that can be explored.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked if there was a reimbursement plan to add the solar panels.  Mr. Walker stated that he wished that were still true, adding that it is true where you have a high volume of solar panels and very little work to do on your roof.  This building is going through such a significant renovation, so he isn’t sure how much of a payback there is but they can certainly look into it.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if the interior is also being significantly rebuilt, is there any chance for geothermal energy.  Mr. Walker stated that in this particular project he didn’t believe it would have a reasonable payback.  They are not digging out new foundations.  If you are working in a new construction facility, geothermal makes a lot of sense because you are already digging foundations, but in this particular case the work is really limited to the interior with the exception of the refacing of the building.   

 

 

  1. DISCUSSION

             

  1. Ridgewood Water

 

  1. Award Lease – Wireless Telecommunication Antennas and Support Facilities at Glen Avenue Water Tank in Midland Park

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they accepted bids on September 23rd.  This involves the lease of the tank and ground space for the installation of new communication and related equipment.  Three bids were picked up and three bids were received.  The high bid was for $360,000 per year and the bidder is Apsara Networks, Inc. of New York, New York.  This space became available because one of the existing carriers terminated their lease.

 

  1. Award Contract – Payment Processor

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they were transitioning from MCC to Invoice Cloud, as MCC was acquired by Invoice Cloud.  Invoice Cloud has several advantages over our current payment processor including that VISA is currently not accepted as a payment option and more than 50% of the online payments are made using VISA credit and debit cards, so this will allow customers to use credit cards that are VISA.  Second, as a payment processor partner of WaterSmart, which will be rolling out shortly, this makes it easy for those using WaterSmart to use it.  However, you do not have to be a user of WaterSmart in order to use it.  Third, it gives a cleaner more user friendly experience and can be used to process payments directly from the Ridgewood Water website by customers who have not activated their WaterSmart account.  Finally, Invoice Cloud offers an automated over the phone payment option as well, which would allow customers another option to pay after hours.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that Invoice Cloud charges $0.40 per paperless billing account per quarter, so that will be $1,870.40 per year.  It will probably grow with the transition to Invoice Cloud, and their goal/estimate is 20% of it will be paperless billing by the end of year 2 which would represent a charge of $1,680 per quarter, of $6,720 per year.  Ridgewood Water has covered the ACH/E-check payments, and they would like to continue to do that with Invoice Cloud, as well.  The annual cost would be $10,021.50 with Invoice Cloud.  By moving to Invoice Cloud it is a huge step forward.  The acceptance of VISA credit cards is a huge improvement, single-sign-on WaterSmart integration, ease of use even if you don’t have WaterSmart, over the phone payments, and also improvements for bill payment processing for customers and the utility alike.

 

Dan Timmeny stated that the most important part of this is the acceptance of VISA as this has been a real shortcoming of their current billing process.  This is something that customers voice to them on a daily basis, and with VISA representing such a giant market share it was obviously something that they had to include in the next phase.  The biggest piece is not having to tell customers that they don’t accept the majority card.

             

  1. Parking – NONE

 

  1. Budget

 

  1. Declare Property Surplus – Streets 1996 GMC Dump Truck

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is a 1996 GMC Topkick Dump Truck that has been deemed unsafe and removed from service.  It has extensive decay, as the truck was used as a brine application truck during the winter and it probably rotted away more quickly.

 

  1. Award Additional Contract – Wetlands for Kings Pond Restoration

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they went out for bid in February, and received six bids.  The low bid was from Wetlands, Inc. of Saddle Brook with a quote of $239,184.00.  They made a partial award of this work in the amount of $118,000 to start the work.  That has been successfully completed.  They have created additional funding through a recent bond ordinance that the Village Council adopted, so they can have an additional award for the items that had been deleted initially.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this award will permit: goose netting, installing various trees, stone dust walking path, park bench with back, and backless park benches.  This is an additional partial award for finishing up that section of the project.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked what was goose netting and did this mean trees for this project that wouldn’t be taken from those being installed throughout the Village.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the trees are separate from the tree planting contracts that were awarded for planting in Area D.  The goose netting is a deterrent for the geese to eat the younger vegetation that they plant.  Councilwoman Perron added that the League of Women Voters is having a Kings Pond Walk this weekend, on Sunday the 11th at 1:00 P.M., and anyone is invited so long as they wear a mask and keep socially distanced.  They are meeting at the McKinley cul-de-sac.

 

  1. Award Contract – Snow Plowing Services

 

Ms. Mailander stated that there were five registered planholders and they received one bid from ConQuest Construction of Westwood.  They have successfully plowed for the Village for the past 8 years.  The sidewalk clearing bid will be used judiciously, and it will only be used in the event that staff is unable to handle a particular storm event.

 

  1. Award Contract Under State Contract – Ten Portable Radios – Police Department

 

Ms. Mailander stated that these are new radios that will better interface with the radio system and have a newer vocoder technology that allows better fidelity of transmissions in higher noise environments.  This purchase is part of a multi-year replacement program.  After this purchase, more than three quarters of the Police Department will have the upgraded portable radios.  This is an award of contract under State Contract to Motorola Solutions, Inc. of Paramus, in the amount not to exceed $33,868 and it is being funded through a capital account.

 

  1. Award Contract Under State Contract – Purchase Ammunition – Police Department

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is an award of contract under State Contract to Eagle Point Gun/T.J. Morris & Son – New Jersey of Thoroughfare, in an amount not to exceed $26,022.64.

 

  1. Award Contract Under Cooperative Purchasing Contract – Self-Contained Auger Compactor – Recycling Department

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is for a compactor and is under the Sourcewell Cooperative Purchasing Contract to Eagle Equipment Corporation of Uwchland, Pennsylvania.  It is an amount not to exceed $50,300, and funding if from capital accounts.  The equipment is for the collection of clean cardboard at the recycling drop-off center.  They had taken this compactor off the bond ordinance, but then decided that this was really a quality of life issue for those living around the Recycling Center so it is certainly something that is necessary.  This is the second compactor they are going to have and it seems like that will be enough and then they can get rid of the garbage truck for the compaction.

 

  1. Award Contract – Second Year – Disposal of Recyclable Materials – Recycling Department

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the Village awarded a three year contract last year for the Disposal of Recyclable Material to Atlantic Coast Fibers, LLC of Passaic.  This is the second year, and it is under a revenue share pricing model and it was the best proposal that the Village received last year.

 

  1. Ridgewood Senior Citizen Housing Corporation

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is an annual resolution where the Village of Ridgewood and the Ridgewood Senior Citizen Housing Corporation, which is what Ridgecrest is, have an agreement that exempts them from paying taxes.  In lieu of taxes they pay an annual service charge for municipal services which is 6.28% of their annual gross revenues plus the cost of sanitary sewers and solid waste collection disposal.  The Village, by ordinance, also guarantees their timely payment of principle and interest due on revenue bonds issued to the County Improvement Authority, and for this the Village receives an annual reimbursement of $25,000.

 

  1. Award Contract – 2021 Village Calendar

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the low quote is from Ridgewood Press of Ridgewood at $11,989.00.  This is funded through the operating budget, and it is a 2.7% increase over last year.

 

  1. Award Contract – Sale of Compost – Department of Public Works

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they received a quote from DTS Trucking of Hawthorne to purchase the finished compost produced by Lakeview Compost Facility for $2.50 per cubic yard, or approximately $25,000.  They have been purchasing finished compost for the past several years, and laboratory testing has confirmed that the compost is finished and ready to be disposed of.  Ms. Mailander asked Mr. Rutishauser if it had already been picked up by DTS.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it would hopefully be picked up in the next couple weeks.  The advantage of using DTS is they bring their own trucks in and get it out of there pretty quick.  Ms. Mailander added that the Village is not allowed to keep that on their property, so every September/October it needs to be cleared out.  Mr. Rutishauser added that they don’t have any room, as they need every bit of the land area at Lakeview for the incoming leaves.  They do keep a small pile for residents that call up and request some compost and try to serve them with that pile, but the bulk of it does have to be removed for the new leaves.

 

  1. Award Contract Under Cooperative Purchasing Contract – Final Phase of Security Upgrade – Village Hall and Additional Items

 

Ms. Mailander stated that in June of this year they awarded an additional $200,000 to SecureWatch for upgrades in Village Hall and various other buildings and areas in the Village.  They are now asking the Village Council to approve the remainder of the project which amounts to $84,531.00.  This brings it in under that $300,000 do not exceed amount.  They are being funded by a couple of different capital accounts. 

 

  1. Policy

 

  1. Discuss Exempt Certain Lighting Installed in a Right of Way

 

Ms. Mailander stated that she believes this concerns the West Village where they want to put lighting on top of the buildings and that was not permitted under the Village Code.  This would be to relax that restriction during this time of the pandemic so that they can attract people to come over to the West Side.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if this would be temporary or permanent.  Ms. Mailander stated that the Village Council could decide that.  It is a land use ordinance and so it does have to go the Planning Board for review if they introduce it, then it comes back to the Village Council.  They could approve it or say no, but the Planning Board makes the recommendations based on land use policy.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon asked if they could suspend this ordinance for the next four months and then revisit it after that and see if they want to make it more permanent.  Ms. Mailander asked if they wanted to do it to the end of the year or into next year.  Councilwoman Perron stated that she would do it into next year as it is a big deal to string those lights up on the roof.  Councilwoman Walsh agreed, adding that she didn’t know if they were going to be able to keep those lights up in inclement weather because if we get high winds those lights could flap around so she thinks it’s a safety issue. 

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that the lights were not glass and were shatterproof.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she would think it’s a safety issue and they should think about it because in the winter months do they have any other buildings with lights strung at the top.  Ms. Mailander stated that they didn’t.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she didn’t know how the lights were secured, but there was hope that whoever put them up is accounting for wind.  Councilwoman Walsh asked if there was any liability for the Village.  Mr. Rogers stated that the Village Council has questions about it and he doesn’t know whether anybody has looked into it, but it needs to be confirmed that the safety issues involved are limited and it’s not going to be a major concern.

 

Ms. Mailander asked Mr. Rogers whether they should do it by resolution.  Mr. Rogers stated that it could fit into the same category and they can do it by resolution to be reviewed at a later date pending usage and the way it works out for further consideration.  He added that Deputy Mayor Sedon’s idea of having it reviewed by the Planning Board in the same breath is something that could be considered, but for the purposes of just dealing with the ordinance as it exists right now, the best way to do it is suspending enforcement and then to go ahead.

 

Ms. Mailander added that they would get more information about the lights and whether or not they were a safety hazard.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that maybe have them give the Village something explaining how they have secured them to the building, because if each person is doing their own building, is there symmetry to how they are securing them and what types of lights there are.  Ms. Mailander stated that her understanding is that they are all going to get them from the same manufacturer.  Councilwoman Perron stated that they should get the manufacturers insert, to which Councilwoman Walsh said was a good idea.

 

  1. Ordinance to Amend Graydon Pool Membership Fees and Tennis Membership Fees

 

Ms. Mailander stated that Nancy Bigos, Director of Parks and Recreation would discuss this.  Ms. Bigos stated that they were going to look at ordinance #3687, #3688, and #3697 all of which would cover recreation fees.  Ordinance #3687 discusses fees for the Summer Day Camp, #3688 would be the Graydon Pool Tennis Membership, and #3697 would be an ordinance to establish the daily guest fees and the coupon books.  Traditionally, the Village Council has reviewed these fees every two years, made a recommendation, and set this fee schedule for them to move forward.  Due to COVID and the uncertainty of the future, she would like to recommend that they leave the fees as set for next year but this was open to discussion by the Village Council.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that traditionally, they have increased by about $10 every two years, and that is so they don’t go up every eight years and now all of a sudden they need a $30 increase.  She supports Ms. Bigos’ recommendation as for 2021 they don’t know what it is going to be like in the summer.  They recently increased the Day Camp fees, and she thinks they should remain the same.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that he thinks it is a great idea, and instead of every two years, to revisit this next year because of the circumstances of COVID and everything else.  There was agreement from the Village Councilmembers.  Ms. Mailander stated that they could probably prepare the ordinances for them next week

 

  1. Change Start Date of Outdoor Cafes for 2021

 

Ms. Mailander stated that in the Welcome Back to Ridgewood, New Jersey meetings, there has been a request that the eateries are allowed to put out their outdoor cafés.  Currently, there is a prohibition against them in January and February.  They would like to be able to have it run from January through December in 2021 so they can put out their outdoor cafes as indicated in their application.  This is weather permitting, and to help out the restaurants, she would recommend that the Village Council consider it.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked when the applications were typically due.  Ms. Mailander stated that they are usually due in February, so they would probably have them due in December.  Councilwoman Walsh asked if they were going to pay the fee.  Ms. Mailander stated that they still pay the fee.

 

Councilwoman Walsh stated that she remembers when they deliberated on this, and her concerns were the same regarding if they had a snowfall which impeded pedestrians walking on the sidewalk with snow on one side and tables on the other.  She added that the businesses would have to assure them that they were being mindful of the weather.  Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that it had been partially snow removal but also just two months of a break so that the sidewalk could be inspected.

 

  1. Operations

 

  1. Shared Services Agreement – E-Procurement Software Services (Bergen County)

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they have offered all municipalities in Bergen County to join with them in the Bonefire E-Procurement Software Services.  There is no charge to the Village for this, and it is a five year contract.  The proposal includes the software and unlimited training and support.  It integrates the Village’s requirements for bids and proposals into the software, creates a portal with the specifications, are available to potential bidders, allows bidders to submit their bids through a portal, and also seals their bids.  It also has vendor participation tracking and a template that prepares an award of contract letter which is then sent out to the bidders.  In addition, it gives evaluation tools for ranking the bidders, gives ability to view other successful projects, and the availability of over 100,000 vendors nationwide.  Ms. Mailander added that it would allow them to work in a more streamlined process and hopefully attract more potential bidders.  

 

  1. Draft – Affordable Housing Element and Fair Share Plan

 

Ms. Mailander stated that these were all about the Affordable Housing ordinances which they were bringing back again.  If they had any questions Mr. Rogers could probably answer those.  They were going to introduce them at next week’s public meeting.

 

Councilwoman Walsh stated that she does know a couple of people that are going through the application process for some of the affordable units at The Dayton and it has been a very easy process for them filling out the application.  The process for the layperson seems to be an easy process.  Mr. Rogers asked if they were market rate units they were applying for or affordable units.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that they were affordable units.

 

Mr. Rogers stated that he did send around to everyone the Settlement Agreement, and if they read it they saw that the ordinances in the Fair Share Plan mimic in many ways the Settlement Agreement in what they have been able to work out with the court approval and the consent of the Fair Share Housing Center.  That is why that document is really pertinent to their review of these items.  There are three things in front of the Village Council, one is the Fair Share Plan which they went over last week.  A resident told him during the interim that he may have misstated something with regard to the unmet need.  Our unmet need is 838 units, which is in the Fair Share Housing Plan that they have.

 

Mr. Rogers stated that unless anyone had any questions, they were going to be asked to endorse the Fair Share Housing Plan and then adopt the ordinances that set into place not only the administrative aspect of providing Affordable Housing, but also the approach that they have to meet the unmet need and the overlay zones that they are utilizing to try and meet that in the future.  Mr. Rogers added that this period now, from 2015 to 2025, the Prospective Need Period, is really what this is designed to deal with.  He stated that they will go through a whole review of this again come the end and there may be interim issues after the passing of these ordinances that may deal with the proposed developments on these sites.

 

Mr. Rogers stated that the manner in which the Fair Share Plan is approved by the court addresses the unmet need and how the Village provides affordable housing in the future.

 

  1. Draft – Affordable Housing – Unmet Need Ordinance

 

  1. Draft – Affordable Housing – Administrative Ordinance

 

  1. Acceptance of 2019 Annual Audit & Corrective Action Plan

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is annually, and the Village Councilmembers received the audit.  They are required to read the general affidavit and the comments, and then they are required to sign that they read that which is then sent to the State of New Jersey.  They have less comments than they usually do, and she congratulated Mr. Rooney and his staff on that.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that when he started with the Village there were 18 comments, last year there were 7 and this year there were 4.  Based upon the cooperation that he gets from the Department Heads and the support he gets from the Village Council, they have been able to minimize the number of items that have been identified during the audit.  One comment has to do with funding of capital ordinances, there are some items on the report that showed deficit balances which means that they have not permanently or temporarily funded those ordinances and they have used the cash for other purposes.  They had a sale this year which eliminated almost all of them, though he thinks going forward they are chipping away at this to get it down to zero.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that the second one has to do with outside offices.  We are bifurcated as to how we account for revenues coming in for the various offices.  They use Spatial Data Logic for certain Departments, they use Capture Point for other Departments, and they use an excel spreadsheet for other Departments.  They are trying to coordinate that and pull together under Capture Point to cover all the offices, but they are running into little problems with how it works with the current accounting system that the Village has.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that the third finding has to do with adjustments that are made on water rent billings.  There hasn’t been a policy in the past, management is allowed to sign off on certain adjustments that are made for whatever reason.  They have now instituted a policy where he reviews anything up to $1,000 and goes over the process as to what created the adjustment and then they approve it or they correct it.  Any item over $1,000 is presented to the Village Council by resolution to either refund or make the adjustments.  He added that they instituted that process to increase the internal controls as it relates to the billing adjustments that go through.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that the last item is encumbrance of funds.  They encumber significant contracts that come through for capital purposes and as they work their way through the project, there may be times where they haven’t reduced it down to zero because there may be change orders at the end.  They are working to make certain that they review all the improvement authorizations as they come to completion to make sure that any funds that may be encumbered and are no longer needed are brought back and presented possibly for cancelation or reappropriation to other purposes.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that it was great that they have whittled this down and are getting closer to that zero goal.  Councilwoman Perron asked if they could do all that without hiring new employees.  Mr. Rooney said yes, this isn’t predicated on headcount, it’s more of a process.  Councilwoman Walsh thanked Mr. Rooney for all of the hard work he and his Department have put into this.

 

  1. REVIEW OF OCTOBER 14, 2020 PUBLIC MEETING AGENDA

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this was a review of the October 14, 2020 Public Meeting Agenda.

 

Proclamations include: National Diabetes Awareness Month; and Declare October National Bullying Prevention Month.

 

There are no ordinances for introduction for Ridgewood Water.

 

There are no ordinances for public hearing for Ridgewood Water.

 

Resolution for Ridgewood Water: Award Professional Services Contract – Public Policy Consultant Services and Water Consortium; Award Contract – Payment Processor; Award Contract Under State Contract – Ford Super Duty F350 – Chassis; Award Contract Under State Contract – Ford Super Duty F350 Truck Body; Award Contract Under State Contract – Ford; Award Additional Award of Contract – Servicing and Repairing of Electric Source at Various Facilities; Award Additional Partial Award of Contract – Resurfacing and Repair of Various Village Streets; Award Lease of Property – Wireless Telecommunications Antennas and Support Facilities – Glen Avenue Water Tank; and Declare Property Surplus – Ridgewood Water Department Vehicles.

 

The following ordinances are scheduled for introduction:  3815 – Amend Chapter 265 – Vehicles and Traffic – Placement of Stop Signs in Various Locations; 3816 – Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Affordable Housing Element and Fair Share Plan; 3817 – Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Affordable Housing – Amend B-1 and B-2 Districts; 3818 – Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Affordable Housing – Create the AH-3 Zone District; 3819 – Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Affordable Housing – Create the B-3 District; 3820 – Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Affordable Housing – Require an Affordable Housing Set-Aside; 3821 – Affordable Housing Administrative Ordinance; 3822 – Amend Chapter 145 – Fees – Graydon Pool Membership Fees; 3823 – Amend Chapter 145 – Fees – Day Camp Fees; and 3824 – Amend Chapter 145 – Fees – Tennis Badge Fees.

 

There are no ordinances for public hearing.

 

Resolutions include: Award Contract – Disposal of Recyclable Materials; Award Contract – Printing of 2021 Village Calendar; Award Contract – Sale of Compost Material; Award Contract – Purchase and Installation of Pumps and Appurtenances – Water Pollution Control Facility; Title 59 Approval – Furnishing and Delivering of Sodium Bisulfite Solution and Sodium Hypochlorite Solution – Water Pollution Control Facility; Award Contract – Furnishing and Delivering of Sodium Bisulfite Solution and Sodium Hypochlorite Solution – Water Pollution Control Facility; Title 59 Approval – Furnishing Laboratory Analysis Services – Water Pollution Control Facility and Graydon Pool; Award Contract – Furnishing Laboratory Analysis Services – Water Pollution Control Facility and Graydon Pool; Title 59 Approval – Snowplowing Services; Award Contract – Snow Plowing Services; Award Contract Under State Contract – In-Car Camera Storage Server – Police Department; Award Contract Under State Contract – Zetron Radio System – Police Department; Award Contract Under State Contract – Ammunition – Police Department; Award Contract Under State Contract – Portable Radios – Police Department; Award Contract Under Cooperative Purchasing Contract – Front End Loader – Streets Division; Award Contract Under Cooperative Purchasing Contract – Self-Contained Compactor – Recycling Department; Award Contract Under Cooperative Purchasing Contract – Final Phase of Security Upgrade – Village Hall and Additional Items; Award Professional Services Contract – 2020 Annual Audit; Authorize Shared Services Agreement – E-Procurement Software (Bergen County); Award Additional Partial Award of Contract – 2020 Resurfacing and Repairs of Various Streets – 2019/2020 NJDOT Municipal Aid Grant Program; Award Additional Award of Contract – Kings Pond Restoration; Declare Property Surplus – Ridgewood Parks and Recreation; Declare Property Surplus – Streets Division Vehicle; Establish Guidelines to Permit Electronic Signatures on Purchase Order/Vouchers; Change Start Date for Outdoor Cafes in 2021; Accept 2019 Annual Audit; Approve 2019 Corrective Action Plan; and Approve Design for Elks Club.  They are also going to do the lighting in the Central Business District to exempt it from violations.

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

Boyd Loving, 342 South Irving Street, stated that the sound was better on this meeting than it has been on any in the past and he thanked Mr. Hansen for this.  He also thanked the Village Council for holding the Graydon Pool fees the same as they were this past year.  The season at Graydon was wonderful this year and it was delightful to get outside.  Hopefully they will have the same thing next summer. 

 

Mr. Loving thanked Councilwoman Reynolds for bringing up the issue regarding the driveway behind 111 North Maple Avenue.  He agrees that there needs to be a pedestrian walkway adjacent to any driveway, as we don’t need any accidents where someone is walking in a path that is being shared with motor vehicles.  He added that he has some concerns about the three parking spaces in front of the building.  There are no spaces there now and there is a reason for that.  If you are driving northbound on Maple Avenue in front of that building, there is a crosswalk in front of the Library.  If you put three parking spaces there, that is going to partially obstruct the drivers view of that crosswalk.  That is a very dangerous crosswalk, he sees that they have recently put in user activated warning lights there as it is so bad.  His suggestion is to not put the spaces there, but rather to encourage people to park in the Library parking lot.

 

Mr. Loving stated that the Village Manager made some comments tonight regarding the election.  No matter how many comments we make about the election, unfortunately people are still confused and it is through no fault of Ms. Mailander or anyone else in the Village.  He suggested that people are going to go to their regular polling locations expecting to vote, even though this is a vote by mail election, he didn’t know if there were plans to put signs at the regular polling places indicating where people need to go.   He asked about people being illiterate and given a paper ballot.

 

There were no additional comments from the public.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they are going to have signs at the normal polling locations because they usually have ten locations, but are going to only have three.  It is based on your polling place numbers.  You are going to get a postcard from the County telling you where your polling location is.  Illiterate or blind voters will have someone to assist them, who will then sign on the ballot as an assistor.  The ADA voting machine will have the audio.  She added that anyone who shows up without their mail in ballot will be given a provisional paper ballot which they can fill out right there, and then there will be an envelope to seal.  She urged people to vote early by mail-in ballot.  Theoretically, there should be no one going to the polls, but they are cognizant that there may be people who don’t realize that it is mail-in.  She added that the County has done a lot to make sure that the ballots are picked up daily from the ballot boxes.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked if someone throws out their ballot because they thought it was a sample ballot, and they fill one out at the polling location, does that get counted on November 3rd.  Ms. Mailander stated that it goes back to the County that night and then they have days to count, up to a week, but she said that absolutely every ballot will get counted.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked if there was any possibility that they could put the flashing signs up with notices about the election.  Ms. Mailander stated that she was going to put up a reminder about Voter Registration because that is Tuesday, then they will out up one regarding mail in ballots.  She added that they are doing as much as they can to let people know.  She added that Village Councilmembers can use their Facebook or social media to share the information as well.  The more people who hear about it will pass it on.

 

  1. RESOLUTION TO GO INTO CLOSED SESSION

 

Deputy Village Clerk Donna Jackson read Resolution #20-293 to go into Closed Session as follows:

 

 

 

 

 

  1. ADJOURNMENT

 

There being no further business to come before the Village Council, on a motion by Councilwoman Perron, seconded by Councilwoman Walsh, and carried unanimously by voice vote, the Village Council’s Work Session was adjourned at 9:47 P.M.

 

 

 

 

  • Hits: 31

A SPECIAL PUBLIC MEETING OF THE VILLAGE COUNCIL OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD HELD VIA ZOOM, DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, ON OCTOBER 7, 2020 AT 7:30 P.M.

 

  1. CALL TO ORDER – OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT – ROLL CALL

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon called the meeting to order at 8:24 P.M. and read the Statement of Compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act.  At roll call the following were present: Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh.  Also present were Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk; Donna Jackson, Deputy Village Clerk; and Matthew Rogers, Village Attorney.  Mayor Knudsen was absent.

 

  1. RESOLUTIONS – RIDGEWOOD WATER

 

THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTIONS, NUMBERED 20-275 THROUGH 20-279, WERE ADOPTED BY A CONSENT AGENDA, WITH ONE VOTE BY THE VILLAGE COUNCIL:

  • Hits: 29

A SPECIAL PUBLIC MEETING OF THE VILLAGE COUNCIL OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD HELD VIA ZOOM, DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, ON AUGUST 5, 2020 AT 7:30 P.M.

 

  1. CALL TO ORDER – OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT – ROLL CALL

 

Mayor Knudsen called the meeting to order at 8:43 P.M. and read the Statement of Compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act.  At roll call the following were present: Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen.  Also present were Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk; Donna Jackson, Deputy Village Clerk; and Matthew Rogers, Village Attorney. 

 

  1. PUBLIC HEARING ON ORDINANCES

 

  1. # 3803 – Amend Chapter 265 Vehicles and Traffic – Allow Changes to Parking Regulations in Hudson Street Parking Garage and on Streets

 

Mayor Knudsen moved the reading of ordinance 3803 by title on second reading and that the Public Hearing thereon be opened.  Deputy Mayor Sedon seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3803 by title:

 

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND CHAPTER 265 OF THE CODE OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD, VEHICLES AND TRAFFIC, AT SECTION 265-18, “REGULATIONS NOT EXCLUSIVE” AND SECTION 265-19, “PARKING PROHIBITED AT ALL TIMES”

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that the Public Hearing was now open.  There were no comments from the public, and Mayor Knudsen closed the Public Hearing.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

Councilwoman Walsh moved that ordinance 3803 be adopted on second reading and final publication as required by law. Deputy Mayor Sedon seconded the motion.  

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. # 3805 – Amend Chapter 265 Vehicles and Traffic – Establish Grab and Go Parking Spaces in the Central Business District

 

Mayor Knudsen moved the reading of ordinance 3805 by title on second reading and that the Public Hearing thereon be opened.  Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3805 by title:

 

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND CHAPTER 265 OF THE CODE OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD, VEHICLES AND TRAFFIC, AT SECTION 265-1, “DEFINITIONS” AND SECTION 265-23, “TIME LIMIT PARKING” AND SECTION 265-26, “LOADING ZONES” AND SECTION 265-34, “UNLAWFUL ACTS”

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that the Public Hearing was now open.  There were no comments from the public, and Mayor Knudsen closed the Public Hearing.  Councilwoman Perron seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

Councilwoman Reynolds moved that ordinance 3805 be adopted on second reading and final publication as required by law. Deputy Mayor Sedon seconded the motion.  

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. # 3806 – Amend Chapter 265 Vehicles and Traffic – Fees for Grab and Go Parking Spaces in the Central Business District

 

Mayor Knudsen moved the reading of ordinance 3806 by title on second reading and that the Public Hearing thereon be opened.  Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3806 by title:

 

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND CHAPTER 145 OF THE CODE OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD, FEES, AT SECTION 145-6, “ENUMERATION OF FEES RELATING TO CODE CHAPTERS”

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that the Public Hearing was now open.  There were no comments from the public, and Mayor Knudsen closed the Public Hearing.  Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon moved that ordinance 3806 be defeated on second reading and final publication as required by law. Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion.  

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. # 3807 – Amend Chapter 145 – Fees – Fees for Grab and Go Parking Spaces in Central Business District

 

Mayor Knudsen moved the reading of ordinance 3807 by title on second reading and that the Public Hearing thereon be opened.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3807 by title:

 

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND CHAPTER 145 OF THE CODE OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD, FEES, AT SECTION 145-6, “ENUMERATION OF FEES RELATING TO CODE CHAPTERS”

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that the Public Hearing was now open.  There were no comments from the public, and Mayor Knudsen closed the Public Hearing.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

Councilwoman Walsh moved that ordinance 3807 be adopted on second reading and final publication as required by law. Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.  

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. RESOLUTIONS

 

THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTIONS, NUMBERED 20-225 THROUGH 20-226, WERE ADOPTED BY A CONSENT AGENDA, WITH ONE VOTE BY THE VILLAGE COUNCIL:

 

 

THE FOLLOW RESOLUTION, NUMBERED 20-227, WAS CONSIDERED SEPARATELY AND READ IN FULL:

 

 

  1. ADJOURNMENT

 

There being no further business to come before the Village Council, on a motion by Councilwoman Walsh, seconded by Deputy Mayor Sedon, and carried unanimously by voice vote, the Village Council’s Special Public Meeting was adjourned at 8:54 P.M.

 

 

 

 

______________________________

                                                                                      Susan Knudsen                                                   

                                                               Mayor                     

 

 

______________________________

              Donna M. Jackson

           Deputy Village Clerk

  • Hits: 60

A REGULAR WORK SESSION OF THE VILLAGE COUNCIL OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD HELD VIA ZOOM, DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, ON SEPTEMBER 2, 2020 AT 7:30 P.M.

 

  1. CALL TO ORDER – OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT – ROLL CALL – FLAG     SALUTE

 

Mayor Knudsen called the meeting to order at 7:36 P.M. and read the Statement of Compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act.  At roll call the following were present: Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen.  Also present were Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk; Donna Jackson, Deputy Village Clerk; and Matthew Rogers, Village Attorney.

 

Mayor Knudsen led those in attendance in the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag as well as in a Moment of Silence to honor the brave men and women serving in our nation’s armed forces, all our first responders, and especially for our Ridgewood Police Officers.

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

There were no comments from the public.

 

  1. VILLAGE CLERK – CERTIFICATION OF PETITION – ONE VILLAGE, ONE VOTE

 

Mr. Rogers stated that it has always been custom and practice for the Village Council not to comment on pending litigation.  A decision came down after 5:00 P.M. today, and he needs time to review it and will talk with all of the members of the Village Council tomorrow with regard to the next steps.

 

  1. MANAGERS REPORT

 

Welcome Back to Ridgewood, New Jersey – Ms. Mailander stated that Welcome Back to Ridgewood includes outdoor dining and free music all day Saturday and Sunday on East Ridgewood Avenue from Broad Street to Walnut Street and the side streets of Oak, Chestnut, and Prospect Streets.  Everything is closed to cars in that area and it creates a pedestrian mall.

 

Hudson Street Garage – Ms. Mailander stated that the first floor is open for business, it is $1.00 per hour to be paid at the kiosk at the Hudson Street entrance and is a three hour limit.

 

Labor Day – On Monday, September 7th, Village Offices will be closed.  Recycling and Sanitation pickup services are suspended and the Recycling Center will also be closed.

 

September 11th Memorial – To honor the memory of the 12 Ridgewood residents lost on 9/11, portraits of each resident are displayed in the Ridgewood Public Library Auditorium for the month of September.  The Library is open seven days a week and offers a place for reflection.

 

                                                                                                                                      

U.S. Census – Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has increased to an 83% response rate, and she asked that residents please fill out the census online or by phone no later than September 30th as we have our goal of a 100% response rate.

 

Rear Yard Garbage Collection – Ms. Mailander stated that rear yard garbage pickup resumed in July, so residents no longer need to bring their garbage cans to the street.

 

Election – Ms. Mailander stated that election season is upon us and election signs or any other signs may not be placed in the planting strip between the curb and sidewalk or on any public property.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the General Election will be primarily vote by mail.  Voters may mail back their ballots to the County via U.S. Mail or they may put it in the ballot box outside of the Village Hall lobby, or may bring it to their polling location.  You can also vote by provisional paper ballot at the polling location.  There will be ADA voting machines available in the polling locations, but they would only be used for those unable to mark the mail in ballots.

 

Resident Volunteers – Ms. Mailander stated that the Village Council is seeking resident volunteers to serve on Boards and Committees.  These include the Planning Board, Zoning Board of Adjustment, Central Business District Advisory Committee, Ridgewood Community Center Advisory Board, Ridgewood Arts Council, Shade Tree Commission, Green Ridgewood, Ridgewood Green Team, and the Open Space Committee.  The deadline to apply is September 8th.  Please submit the Citizen Volunteer Leadership Form, which is found on the website under Forms, page 2, it says Village Clerk, and then you will see the form.  Also, submit a resume or biography of your accomplishments or what you have done in life and a cover letter indicating which Boards you would like to serve on. 

 

Cancellations of Events – Ms. Mailander stated that due to COVID-19, there are various cancellations of events.  The Chamber of Commerce Car Show, scheduled for 9/11, has been canceled, as has Coffee with the Council which was scheduled for 9/12, and then the Parks and Recreation Street Fair was also canceled which was scheduled for 9/20.

 

Chamber of Commerce – Ms. Mailander stated that the Chamber of Commerce will host their Sidewalk Sale Days inside and out on October 1st, 2nd, and 3rd.

 

Household Hazardous Waste Collection – Ms. Mailander stated that the Bergen County Utilities Authority will be holding their Household Hazardous Waste collection on September 12th from 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. at Bergen County Campgaw Reservation in Mahwah. 

 

Upcoming Village Council Meetings – Ms. Mailander stated that the upcoming Village Council meetings are all televised live and are on Zoom.  September 9th is the Village Council Public Meeting, September 23rd is the Village Council Public Work Session, and October 7th is a Village Council Public Work Session.

 

Social Security Administration – Ms. Mailander stated that on behalf of the Social Security Administration, during the Coronavirus Pandemic, they continue to provide help to anyone who may need social security help.  You can apply for disability, Medicare benefits, check the status of an application or appeal, request a replacement social security card, print a benefit verification letter, and much more services are provided online.  They know that many people want to converse with someone, so they do have phone help.  There will be information about this posted on the Village website

 

  1. COUNCIL REPORTS

 

Chamber of Commerce – Councilwoman Perron stated that the next meeting is September 9th, although work has been getting done over the past month, especially with respect to the pedestrian mall.

 

Green Ridgewood – Councilwoman Perron stated that Green Ridgewood will meet on Thursday at 7:00 P.M. and it is open to the public.

 

Open Space – Councilwoman Perron stated that Open Space met on August 20th and Rob Kearny who is an employee of the Ridgewood Water Utility presented.  He is going for a Graduate Degree in GIS Mapping, so it was really interesting how you map natural resources.  He is urging people to help him draft an Environmental Resources Inventory for the town, and she signed up to do the Dunham Trail.  They are looking for more volunteers to help with that endeavor, which overlaps with his membership in Green Ridgewood.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if people interested in participating in the Inventory could email Councilwoman Perron directly.  Councilwoman Perron stated yes, adding that her email is pperron@ridgewoodnj.net.

 

Central Business District Advisory Committee – Councilwoman Perron stated that the CBD Advisory Committee is really trying to help the downtown businesses thrive during this difficult time.  The Pilot Program for “Grab and Go” parking spaces is up and running and they are all really excited about that.  There are ten spaces throughout town on the North/South streets.  Those are free, 15-minute parking spaces for people who are either picking up contactless delivery from a restaurant or they can run a very quick errand in that time.  She encouraged people to look for those signs and use those spots.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that they are also considering a Visitors Bureau for the Central Business District in the form of a website, so that people from Franklin Lakes or Glen Rock can see what is going on in Ridgewood.  They are continuing to work on handouts and literature for potential tenants in the multi-family housing complexes, to again provide coupons to businesses downtown, invite them to look around the Village and see what’s attractive, and if they want to move here.

 

Planning Board – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that the Planning Board met last night and reviewed the final draft of the first section of the Master Plan – Our Village, Our Future.  It was a huge step in the right direction for the Master Plan.  There was going to be a Hopper Ridge Condominium Association application but it was moved to October 6th.

 

Citizen Safety Advisory Committee – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that they will be meeting on September 17th, and they hopefully will be meeting in person but that will be announced in the future.

 

Welcome Back, Ridgewood – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she hoped everyone was able to take advantage of the concerts on Saturdays and Sundays at Van Neste downtown as they have been fabulous.

 

Green Team – Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that tomorrow at 7:30 P.M. the Green Team will meet via Zoom.

 

Kasschau Shell – Mayor Knudsen pointed out that the Kasschau Shell ended their season and she gave a great shoutout to the Kasschau Shell Committee, Parks and Recreation, and especially Gail McCarthy for her leadership this fabulous season and all of that hard work, energy, and effort are greatly appreciated.

 

  1. DISCUSSION

             

  1. Ridgewood Water

 

  1. Award Contract – Roof Repairs to Various Ridgewood Water Facilities

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is for two of the facilities.  Three quotes were obtained.  This is the third year of continuing these improvements.  There were eleven roof structures improved in 2018, eight were improved in 2019, and two are scheduled for this year.  American Construction Chimney and Roofing Specialist of Cliffside Park had the lowest quote of $25,800.  So, the recommendation is to award it to this company and the funding is established in the Water Utility capital budget.

 

  1. Award Professional Services Contract – Preliminary Design Services for PFAS Treatment & Associated Projects

 

Ms. Mailander stated that in June of this year, Mott MacDonald, our consultant, completed the PFAS Planning and Treatment Study.  The Study mapped out a master plan of alternatives to reconfigure some of the treatment systems to eliminate concentrations of PFAS.  The primary focus of the plan is to centralize treatment for efficiency and to take advantage of sites that have more space for the required treatment equipment.  Ridgewood Water would like to proceed with the preliminary design and four of the thirteen proposed treatment plans.  So far, treatment has been installed and is operational at the Carr Treatment Plant.  Design evaluations are underway for the Marr Ravine, Irving/Linwood, Upgraded Carr, and Twinney Plants.  All of these plants serve the largest pressure zone for the system which is a low pressure zone.  The focus for the next preliminary design is to design treatment plants in other operational zones, such as the intermediate and high zones, and one other geographical location in the low.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that in addition to the preliminary design services, Mott MacDonald with assist with the treatment plant at Carr, evaluate all of the raw water pipeline that are required for the new system buildout, and participate in the rate making analysis with our hired rate professional and attend meetings with NJDEP to lay out the compliance schedule for meeting the new PFAS regulations.  Mott MacDonald was previously Hatch Mott MacDonald, and so they have been involved with numerous projects with Ridgewood Water for decades.  Based on their past project experience and working knowledge of our system, they will be best suited to perform this professional engineering service.  The recommendation is to award it to Mott MacDonald of Iselin in an amount not to exceed $277,600.  Funding for this is in the Water capital budget.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if these were the types of costs that the Village is asking for reimbursement in the pending litigation.  Mr. Calbi stated that yes, they were.

 

  1. Award Contract – Replacement of Water Mains

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is on Jefferson Street and Salem Lane.  Bids were received yesterday, and there were 22 plan holders eligible to bid and they received 15 bids.  They range from a low of $814,290 to a high of $1,821,750.  The low bid received was from On Cue Technologies of Oradell.  They submitted a complete bid package and all necessary information, and they have also successfully worked for the Village in the past.  This will be funded from the Ridgewood Water capital budget.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked with a spread of $1 million between bids, if are we missing something, and could they come back with change orders later on in the project.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is a huge spread, and the low bidder did put a number of items where they bid a minimal amount of $1, which are the items that were in the bid that they may or may not use.  They are taking a gamble that they will not use them.  Mr. Rutishauser knows that the contractor is very eager to start work, and the high bidder has plenty of work and put out a what is it worth to me number, which is why they were so high.  He added that the second bidder was around $830,000.

 

  1. Award Professional Services Contract – Risk Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan Updates

 

Ms. Mailander stated that on August 28th, proposals for the Professional Services for the Risk and Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan Updates were received.  Mott MacDonald of Iselin provided the lowest quote in an amount not to exceed $37,750.  Funding for this project is in the Ridgewood Water operating budget.  This is required under the America’s Water Infrastructure Act.  They have done the Emergency Response Plan and it has been updated periodically and it is time to update it again.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that this really gives her reassurance to see that Ridgewood Water is getting this design for risk assessment and an emergency response plan.  She had been wondering about this with regard to climate change.  She didn’t realize that the law had changed in 2018 such that the Water Utility had security measures for physical breaches and for cyber-attacks.  She was wondering what is it with resiliency to climate change and this answers her question.  She is glad this planning is happening.

 

  1. Parking

 

  1. Discuss Parking on Colonial Road

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that there has been ongoing issues on Colonial Road, specific to one resident having some difficulties backing out of her driveway, and because of the narrowness of the road and configuration of the limited time parking on the South side of the road versus the no parking on the North side of the road.  This particular resident has a driveway that is on a steep hill and coupled with the narrow roadway, when she backs out if someone is parked immediately on the opposite side of her driveway, she often runs into problems.  When Mayor Knudsen visited the location and had the opportunity to speak to the resident, it occurred to her that a number of years ago she recalled another resident who backed out of her driveway similarly situated and hit a tree.  When they look at the homes along the north side of the road, about six of them are high on the hill.  Their driveways are rather narrow and when they are backing out, it is difficult to maneuver.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that upon visiting the site, it occurred to her that one option might be to simply flip the no parking on the north side to the south side and the timed parking from the south side to the north side.  She added that it might be prudent to have the Police Department look into that and have Mr. Rutishauser possibly send letters to all of the residents to see if that is a solution they would be willing to work with.  It would be at least something that begins some work towards a solution there.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that if this was the same road she was thinking about, several years ago there was a fatality with a car backing out.  Mayor Knudsen stated that was a different road.  She added that there are six homes on a hill and they have narrow driveways with concrete retaining walls which make it uncomfortable to back up their driveways and pull out straight.  Flipping the parked cars along the street in that section might offer a simple solution to their struggles, and in particular this one resident.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that she didn’t know if Mr. Rutishauser or Sergeant Chuck had looked at this location before.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that he has looked at the location and has spoken to a number of residents in confidence, and they are not particularly fond of this one resident who is making this request.  They have had some vandalism of Village property on that street, consisting of someone painting their own curb yellow which required the Village to spend a considerable amount of effort with the Traffic, Signal, and Water Pollution crew to scrub the yellow paint off the curb.  There is a Police report with a certain resident threating to relocate No Parking signs for her convenience, so the history on this is kind of murky.  Mayor Knudsen stated to that point, she and Mr. Rutishauser have had this conversation, and it really speaks to whether or not the other folks would at least be receptive to just making this flip if it helps and resolves a neighborhood issue.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they could send out the survey letters, and he would talk to Ms. Mailander and Ms. Jackson about preserving the confidentiality of the replies with regards to OPRA.

 

Sergeant Chuck stated that the Police Department would definitely suggest that they do the entire roadway as it would get too confusing to have many different sections.  Ms. Mailander agreed.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she thinks CSAC hasn’t seen this yet and the resident that sent everyone an email, emailed back and forth, and the recommendation that Councilwoman Walsh had given her was to first meet with CSAC and talk about the problem there.  In the past, Colonial Road came up when Stevens Field was finished and that’s why there was this change in parking back then because there were so many people parking on Colonial Road because of Stevens Field.  She added that she thinks they have to bring that into the conversation because she knows that was one of the challenges a few years back.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that Stevens Field has been out of service for at least the last month and a half, so that has reduced the parking demand.  When he has been on the street, there are cars parked there.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that her thought is that she doesn’t necessarily think it’s a CSAC issue, per say, because it is just one of those things that it doesn’t impact the decisions that were made as a result of Stevens Field.  It maintains the same parking configurations and is merely flipping it.  It is likely because of COVID-19 and people having cars home may be part of the issue, but there was one accident that had some significant damage.  They should first establish if the residents are open to this and if there is going to be some pushback, then at least there is a starting point.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she thinks the benefit of CSAC is that you bring the residents together and they can have a conversation, as opposed to here are the results of a survey take it or leave it.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that the survey would take into consideration everyone on the block, and she is sure that not everybody is going to come to a CSAC meeting or speak, and they may only be the three or four people that want it the most or don’t want it the most.  Mayor Knudsen suggested that maybe they send out the resident survey and ask them for an email address.  Then if there is a desire to have a conversation at least they have those email addresses and before any final decision is made, they can email everyone and invite them to the CSAC meeting and this would just be a preliminary step. 

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon asked if they could put the date for the next CSAC meeting in the survey letter they send out, so if somebody gets the letter they know this is a topic of discussion and if they are interested they could come to the next CSAC meeting.  Councilwoman Walsh and Mayor Knudsen agreed.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that it was September 17th, but they don’t know where it is yet.  Ms. Mailander stated that they should know by next week.

 

  1. Budget

 

  1. Quarterly Financial Statements

 

Robert Rooney, Chief Financial Officer, stated that he provided the Village Council with revenue and expense reports through June 30th for the Current Fund, Water Fund, and Parking Utility Fund.  Tax collection through three quarters are slightly above what they did last year, which is very promising.  On sheet one of the revenues, he put asterisks by those revenues that will be in jeopardy this year.  The significant ones are municipal court, the recreation fees and permits, and uniform construction code, because of COVID those will be challenged this year and hopefully they can come close to what they anticipate.  Some of the other challenges are the timing of billing.  Overall, the revenues of the General Fund are about 46% of what they anticipate which is good news under the circumstances.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that on the appropriations side, some of the COVID expenses are recorded in the specific line items where they have been incurred, such as Signal, Building Maintenance, and then there is a catchall where they are holding expenses for COVID that have not hit these appropriations.  Those are the ones they are going to have to take a look at as they get closer to the end of the year to determine how they are going to fund those to move forward.  They have submitted requests to FEMA and to CARES for reimbursement for those expenses the Village has incurred related to COVID.  This would include overtime for the Police Department and any other Departments, so they are waiting to hear back on that.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked for those line items that aren’t timing, when would we be able to realize what the potential loss would be for that total dollar amount.  Mr. Rooney stated that probably by the end of September he would be in a better position to let them now if that is going to be in jeopardy.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that the Water Department has received 43% of their anticipated revenues, but Rich Calbi states in their conversations that July was a banner month.  There were a lot of billings because of the heat and the use of water.  We are past what he would call the hot part of the year where they have to be concerned about the purchase and usage of water.  Under appropriations for water, we have spent about 41% of what we have budgeted and they do have some capital outlay funds that are projects that are ongoing and haven’t kicked in full stream yet because of COVID.  He anticipates they are going to be ratcheting up by the end of the year.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that regarding Parking Utility Fund, they are at 31% as of June 30th.  They have suspended parking meter enforcement, so that is down, in addition to interest on investments interest rates dropped drastically as a result of COVID.  Through August, parking meter revenue has been up roughly to about 33%.  The key is commuters going back to the city, businesses start to get back in action, so we are going to keep an eye on this one.  For appropriations, they are about 38% for what they budgeted and probably have about $100,000 that they can cancel by the end of the year for other expenses that they may not have a use, for so that will temper the problem.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that on Monday, the State passed a bill, A3971, which allows the municipalities and counties and authorities to issue short term or long term, five years to ten years, of debt to compensate for the shortage of revenues and any COVID expenses that they have incurred, after reimbursement from FEMA or CARES.  Local Government will be coming out probably by the end of next week with some guidance and regulations as to how to proceed with this.  This will assist in preventing deficits in these funds that will have to be raised in future years and levelling the cost of these out.  Under circumstances like this, you can issue a special emergency which is similar to what they do for the Master Plan which allows the cost to be spread over five years.  Under this bill you would be given one year free without any interest or appropriation to put in for next year and then it’s five years after that.  They are trying to help balance these shortfalls to make sure that this doesn’t impact taxes drastically next year.  Mr. Rooney stated that hopefully by the end of September they will have all the guidance they need and he will be able to present the Village Council with a plan with his recommendation as to how to move forward and they can mitigate these issues that they are faced with right now.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that it looked like the Parking Utility was going to be in the deficit, but they could issue the bonds and then spread it out so they wouldn’t then have to cover the deficit as it has been done in the past through taxation.  Mr. Rooney stated that was correct, and under this scenario this bill would also apply to any utility.  So, if they anticipate a shortfall in these revenues which are COVID related, they will be able to issue financing to cover that so it will not impact the tax rate next year.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if the numbers meant they were anticipating an $800,000 loss or was her math off.  Councilwoman Walsh stated on the Parking Utility Fund, they should get at least 70% of the revenues.  Mr. Rooney stated no, up through August they are about 33% of what they anticipate for parking.  As far as any deficit, that remains to be seen as to what he is going to get in through September.  Right now, he is looking at a potential deficit.  There has to be an increase in volume to be able to move forward, but there is a vehicle that they can put in place moving forward so that it will not impact the General Fund.

 

  1. Declare Surplus – Abandoned Vehicle – Signal Division

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is a 2007 Nissan Xterra that was seized by the Police Department.  They have obtained a New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission Certificate of Title for this abandoned vehicle.  The request is to declare it surplus so that it can be auctioned.  Councilwoman Perron asked when the vehicle was seized.  Sergeant Chuck stated 2014.  Councilwoman Perron asked when it was forfeited.  Sergeant Chuck stated about two months ago, it was a long court process and after that the defendant passed away.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked what the value of it was.  Sergeant Chuck stated almost nothing, and actually there is some sort of trigger on it so they can’t start the car.  Mayor Knudsen stated that it is probably in really bad shape from sitting all these years.  Sergeant Chuck stated that it probably needs another coat of paint and definitely some vacuuming inside.

 

  1. Award Contract – 2021 Ford Escape – Parking Enforcement

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they have had only one vehicle for the PEO’s for over a year, and sometimes there are multiple tasks that they have to accomplish and it requires more than one car.  There are also days when the one car that they have is in service and therefor it is out of service.  They are also trying to move towards the License Plate Reader system of enforcement, so therefore they will need a second car for that, as well.  This would be from Mahwah Ford which was the lowest bidder of three quotes at a cost of $29,000.  They are also requesting to add the same warning lights as the current car which is $2,500 from Regional Communications in Paramus, and striping from American Graphics in Fair Lawn which costs $2,500.  There are already standing contracts for Regional Communications and American Graphics, so the total cost of the vehicle would be $34,000.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked why is it that they never look at the more utility type vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they did a trial with an electric model last summer.  They ran into two problems.  When it rained they weren’t getting much rain protection and the equipment that the PEO’s were using wasn’t able to recharge in that vehicle.  Also, a couple of their responsibilities took them over the highway and roadways that are over 25 mph.  The Cushman’s are low speed vehicles only, so there are a few places where they can’t travel with that vehicle.  Mayor Knudsen asked what the cost is for one of those vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that the Cushman was about $18,000.  They also looked at two door Smart cars, which are more expensive.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked about other electric vehicles or hybrid vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they didn’t look that deeply into it as the fuel economy on this Escape is pretty good.  They hybrids are normally a little more expensive to purchase, and the problem they ran into this year is that most State contracts expired, so they are pretty much just buying what is out there and its driving the costs up a little more.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked about the license plate reader, and if there was a specific setup for it, or could they use it in a sedan as opposed to an SUV.  Sergeant Chuck stated that the difference between the sedan and the SUV was $1,100, and then they lose 4 wheel drive capabilities.  Also, the set up takes a little more space inside the car and the sedan is a little tighter, so it may have been more uncomfortable for the driver.  They don’t want to install a $20,000 license plate system in a car that they would be getting maybe 6 months out of because then they would have to take all that equipment out and put it in another reused car.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked since they were in a deficit with the Parking Utility was it prudent to be buying a new vehicle or should they wait until the Spring.  Mr. Rooney stated that these funds have already been passed in capital through last year’s capital budget so they have been funded already.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if the license plate reader was coming soon, and also if it goes in the front seat or the back seat.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they have it in place already, and it just started last week.  The cameras are outside the car, with two cameras on the roof and two on the back of the car.  The computer system that runs the cameras, one part is in the trunk and then the part that the operator uses is attached to the car, half in the passenger seat.

 

  1. Award Contracts – Tree Plantings in Area D and Various Locations

 

Ms. Mailander stated that there were approximately 12 plan holders eligible to bid and they received 7.  There were 3 bidders that each presented the lowest price for specific trees and the general instructions indicated that they could make partial awards based on the bid results.  Therefore, they are recommending that portions of the tree planting in form of proposal solicitations be awarded to three lowest bidders, described as the lowest bid for those particular trees.  Faircut Services LLC of Little Falls, will supply 44 Yellow Wood and 40 Saw Tooth Oak, for a total of $43,832.  Downes Tree Service of Hawthorne, will supply 33 Persian Iron Wood, 24 Sugar Maple, and 23 Trident Maple, for a total of $42,320. Clarke Moynihan Landscaping and Construction LLC of Andover, will supply 13 Japanese Tree, Lilac, Maple Amoricaya, and Swamp Tooth Oak, for a total of $23,570.  The grand total of the award is $109,722 for 218 trees to be planted in the Village.  Funding for this work is in a capital ordinance.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if all of those trees are native.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they were all trees that were recommended for the Village.  Declan Madden, the Village Arborist was intimately involved in the selecting species that they put into the bid documents.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked about the species, because she looked up a couple of them and she doesn’t know for sure but it looks like some of the branches are going to be low and that would obviously be a problem.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that there were two type of species they were looking at.  They were looking for trees that are suitable for under utility wire locations, and trees for locations that don’t have any utility wires that would compromise them as they grow.  Low growing trees would go under areas with utility wires.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that if they are under utility wires, they are going to be in areas where trucks are driving.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they are trying to talk to people to plant the trees not between the curb and the sidewalk in the strip, but behind the sidewalk on the property to remove them further from the travel lane where their growth could be impeded.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked if they could tell people where the trees need to be planted, or only suggest.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the Parks Department works with the people both on the species and where it gets planted.  They also have to look at a mark out as it is ill advised to plant a tree right on top of somebody’s sanitary sewer, water service, or gas service because they may be struck during the digging.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if this was an effort to move planting the trees out of the grass strip, and do they have the ability to make that as a requirement.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the Parks Department talks to the residents and tries to convince them to plant on the inside of the sidewalk away from the parkway strip, particularly if it is very narrow.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked what they would do if someone said they didn’t want it on their part of the grass.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that was up to the arborist, if he and the homeowner cant come to an agreement then maybe they will move onto the next location.  This is in Area D, and if they get all these trees planted great, but if not everybody wants a tree they will move onto other sections.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that he would like to make a request that the arborist’s time is freed up while this planting is going on because they have had issues in the past where people were improperly planting trees or just tossing them in the ground.  Seeing that this is an investment with costs of $500 per tree, he would hate to see these dying because they weren’t being planted correctly.  He would like to see the arborist out there supervising these plantings.  Councilwoman Perron asked what the maintenance is on these trees.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that he thinks the Parks Department has a flyer that they give the homeowners that discusses the maintenance and care of the trees.  Councilwoman Perron asked if the homeowners are given gator bags and stakes to help the trees stay straight up.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the trees are staked and he believes they are supplied with a gator bag; however, the resident is asked to fill the gator bag.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked since there is only watering two days a week, is there any kind of exception if they are getting a tree and allowed to water more often.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the gator bags are there and can be filled with a hose any time and that is not a restricted item under the stage two requirements.  For an exemption to the irrigation restrictions, they would have to contact the Water Company and present their case.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked if these plantings were for this Fall.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is intended for this Fall.  That’s why if the Council is in favor of what is presented, and it is approved next week, he will start issuing the contracts right away.  Each of the three vendors will be lined up to get their trees ordered and then get ready to plant them once they’re in a dormant state.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if the Village ordinance states that if you have a new tree planted you are permitted to water it.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that you are always permitted to hand water.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated not between the hours of 10:00 A.M. and 6:00 P.M., which a lot of people don’t know.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that they could pull a hose out to it and water for a half hour once a week and that should be enough.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the watering instructions are on the flyer the resident will get when the tree is planted.  Councilwoman Perron asked that when this comes up next week, can they be reminded where Area D is.  Ms. Mailander stated that over the last three years they have completed Areas A, B, and C.

 

  1. Award Change Order – Renovation and Upgrades – Graydon Pool

 

Ms. Mailander stated that Tri-Plex Industries of South Amboy successfully performed the renovation and upgrades of the restrooms at Graydon Pool.  Their workmanship was satisfactory and they asked Tri-Plex to provide a quote for a number of items that were not in the original bid documents.  The attached change order request has been approved by the architects Connolly and Hickey.  The Change Order Number 2 to Tri-Plex Industries would be for $5,372.88.  There is sufficient funding in a capital account.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked when they were figuring this original project, why stainless steel ADA complaint grab bars, or stainless steel tamper resistant toilet paper dispensers weren’t in the plan as it seems like those are things would have to put in by an architect to be up to code.  Ms. Mailander stated that she could go to Connolly and Hickey and ask why those things weren’t included.

 

  1. Additional Award – Disposal of Ground Yard Waste

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they previously awarded a contract to B and B of West Milford for $17.00 per cubic yard for disposal of yard waste.  Nature’s Choice was $20.00 per cubic yard for disposal of grass clippings.  An additional award to B and B in the amount of $30,000 for yard waste removal is now needed.  The previous award was in the amount of $50,000.  The reason the additional yard waste was generated and needed to be disposed was due to Tropical Storm Isaias.  The good news is the expenditure for disposal of grass clippings is significantly less than what was anticipated.  The Village has spent approximately $4,950 out of a budget of $50,000, so they can actually put that money towards the disposal of yard waste.  The Village is prohibited from disposing of its yard waste materials in our leaf compost facility by our permit from the NJDEP.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she was curious why the grass clippings was so far off, and suggested it was because of less rain this year.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it depends on the growing season how much the trucks collect off the street, and it depends what residents landscapers take with them or whether they leave it at the curb.  Sometimes the loads are not always pure grass and then B and B has accepted them, and they are trying to direct materials to B and B because there is a $3 difference.

 

  1. Additional Award – Project Closeout Services – Hudson Street Garage

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has been dealing with the contaminated soils encountered during the excavations for footings for the garage and the structural soil for the Hudson Street tree planting with the assistance of First Environment.  First Environment has been providing Licensed Site Remediation Professional (LSRP) and material removal services for the garage.  They gave a proposal and an award was made in the amount of $13,600.  Since then, additional effort has been needed primarily with the structural soil that was installed for the shade trees along Hudson Street estimating that it will be another $11,800 to close out the environmental items for the garage site.  Mr. Rutishauser is recommending an award of $15,000 with this final closeout change order.  Money is available in that project construction account.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if this was for documentation of the close out as this seems like a lot for that, or is it actual substantive changes.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is substantial.  One of the things they have to do is a deed notice because there is residual contamination in place, and the LSRP also has to satisfactorily demonstrate to the DEP that the Village has put a satisfactory barrier between any residual contaminated material and the public as an institutional barrier, and for the garage that is the concrete floor.  Councilwoman Perron asked if they were paying for the professional services of the LSRP to get the final sign off from NJDEP.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that was correct.

 

  1. Award Cooperative Purchasing Contract – Compressor Breathing Air Filling System – Fire Department

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they were going to discuss this previously but it was removed from the agenda because they didn’t have a funding source.  A general capital ordinance was introduced which included the compressor to fill the bottles, for $29,990 under NPP.GOV Contract, which is a cooperative purchasing contract.  They will pay for it from the Operating Budget until the Capital Account becomes available.  The award is to Air & Gas Technologies of Cliffwood Beach.

 

  1. Policy

 

  1. Discussion of Suspended CBD Ordinances

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that over the past couple of months, Welcome Back to Ridgewood, New Jersey has been meeting and during the course of that time a number of ordinances have been suspended to help facilitate the Pedestrian Plaza to accommodate on-street dining to add balloons and other such things.  She thought it was important to put together a list of all the ordinances that have been suspended as she thinks it should be handled through a resolution by the Village Council.  In the interim, one of the things that came up was the opportunity to bring the west side of West Ridgewood Avenue/Wilsey Square into this and encourage shoppers and diners to go to that side of the train tracks, and conversely to the east side of the pedestrian plaza.  One of the suggestions was to add lights to the top of the buildings along Wilsey.  The building owner has ordered lights and they would test them on one building and then they would continue to do the entire run of Wilsey and continue onto West Ridgewood Avenue.  Mayor Knudsen stated that if the Village Council is in favor of suspending ordinances that would be required in order to keep those lights there.  

 

Mayor Knudsen referred to the Village Code Chapters, and added that the Planning Board took a look at this last night and determined that it was a positive impact and something worthwhile looking at and allowing to happen.  She asked if the Village Council was willing to do a resolution next week, and in the interim if they do the lights tomorrow night as a test run, they would allow them to leave those up until the resolution has passed.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if it was a string of lights.  Mayor Knudsen stated that they are string lights that are going to be a warm yellow light to give a glow over on Wilsey.  There is some signage that would appear as you are walking into the tunnel encouraging folks to visit the West side and way finder stickers to put on the ground.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she has those lights on her back deck and they are very nice.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that she didn’t circulate the letter from the Planning Board, but she read the contents of the letter to the Village Council.  It is really a review and trying to give some attention to that other side of the railroad tracks.  If everybody is agreeable and they are going to do that, then they would allow the building owner to keep the lights up.  Over Zoom Councilwoman Reynolds showed some documents from the Planning Board to the Village Council.  Councilwoman Walsh asked if each property owner does their own.  Mayor Knudsen stated that she thinks they are going to work together to accomplish this so it all appears as a seamless effort.  Councilwoman Perron stated that she had been going to the Subcommittee meetings twice a week for this, and basically it is two landlords for all of those shops and one of them also owns the property where Smoked is located, which would look great with some lights.  Mayor Knudsen stated that the Planning Board recommended expanding on this along Garber and West Ridgewood Avenue, as well.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that the important piece is that they are open and agreeable to suspending that ordinance temporarily and then looking at whether or not down the road there is an ability to rethink that ordinance entirely.  The Village Council was agreeable to that.  Mayor Knudsen stated that they would have a list of the other ordinances compiled by next week.  They did a pilot of expanding Steel Wheel and S. Egidio into the parking spaces temporarily to allow them to participate in the pedestrian plaza, but the thought was to allow them to leave it there as the restaurants increase to 25% capacity.  Felina and Sook also wanted to give it a shot, so two of them have decided they would do a pilot program and it has been successful.  This piece is very temporary and they have worked with the Police Department.

 

  1. Operations

 

  1. Authorize Joining Omnia Partners Cooperative Purchasing Program

 

Ms. Mailander stated that there was a memo from Mr. Rooney stating that they are always trying to reduce costs and provide services to our residents.  The Village has used various Cooperative Purchasing Programs and currently participates in 14 of them.  This allows them to find cost savings and expand on valuable resources.  Omnia Partners Public Sector is another cooperative purchasing program that will add numerous vendors to our database.  It is free for the Village to join.

 

  1. Authorize Online Auction Service – GovDeals – Sourcewell

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has participated in the Cooperative Purchasing through Sourcewell.  GovDeals, Inc. is an authorized auction site through Sourcewell, and the Village has used them in the past.  Municibid was used over the past year as it is now under State Contract.  GovDeals is nationwide and has greater traffic, and there is also more customer service with them.  This is a resolution to authorize the use of GovDeals to auction surplus property when MuniciBid is ineffective, and it is also an additional resource to dispose of Village property so that they get the greatest return for the taxpayer.

 

  1. REVIEW OF SEPTEMBER 13, 2020 PUBLIC MEETING AGENDA

 

Proclamations: Fire Prevention Week; Gold Star Mother’s Day; National Breast Cancer Awareness Week; and Proclaim September National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.

 

There are no ordinances for introduction for Ridgewood Water.

 

There are no ordinances for public hearing for Ridgewood Water.

 

Resolutions for Ridgewood Water include: Award Contract – Roof Repairs to Various Ridgewood Water Facilities; Title 59 Approval – Water Main Replacement – Jefferson Street and Salem Lane; Award Contract – Water Main Replacement – Jefferson Street and Salem Lane; Award Professional Services Contract – Preliminary Design Services for PFAS Treatment and Associated Projects; and Award Professional Services Contract – Risk Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan.

 

There are no ordinances for introduction.

 

Ordinances for public hearing include: Amend Chapter 265 – Vehicles and Traffic – Placement of Stop Signs in Hudson Street Garage; Amend Village Code to Allow Additional Village Employees to Perform General Code Enforcement Duties; Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Allow Accessible Ramps on One-Family and Two-Family Dwellings to be Reviewed by the Site Plan Exemption Committee; Bond Ordinance – General Capital; Bond Ordinance – Supplemental Appropriation for Front End Loader; and Bond Ordinance – Circle Avenue Drainage Improvements.

 

Resolutions include: Award Contract – Purchase of 2021 Ford Escape – Police Department; Award Contract – Additional Award – Disposal of Yard Waste; Award Contract – Hudson Street Lots – Additional Environmental Technical Support for Project Closeout; Award Contract – Compressor Breathing Air Filling System; Title 59 Approval – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Contract Under Sourcewell Cooperative Purchasing Program – On-line Auction Services for Surplus Property; Authorize Change Order – Renovation and Upgrades – Graydon Pool Bathrooms; Authorize Joining Omnia Partners Public Sector Cooperative Purchasing Program; and Declare Property Surplus – Abandoned Vehicle.

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

Boyd Loving, 342 South Irving Street, stated that he is eagerly awaiting the reopening of Graydon Pool this coming Saturday, as it was closed Monday through Friday because of the unavailability of lifeguards.  He thanked the Village Council for pushing to have the pool open this year as it has been absolutely delightful.  There were many communities that did not open their pools this year and he is thankful that the Council made the decision to open ours.  The water quality has been the best he has ever seen, and he wanted to thank the staff that are taking care of the pool.  As far as he knows, there have been no virus outbreaks at the pool and it has been an absolute delight to be over there.

 

Mr. Loving stated that Mr. Rooney talked about revenue which brings to mind that they have the Airbrook space that was vacated and he has heard no discussion during open meetings about what is being done to fill that space as it was a significant revenue loss when that space was vacated.  There was also some talk about parking, and his concerns were they ever going to get back to a demand that meets or exceeds what happened pre-pandemic or do they have too much parking inventory now.  Obviously, they have to wait and see, but there is a possibility that exists that people will not be commuting to the City as much and there may not be a need for all this parking.  Mr. Loving stated that he hopes an evaluation takes place at some point regarding the parking.  Possibly they have too much parking and can turn some of this into a ratable in some fashion.

 

Mr. Loving stated that effective this past week, the Board of Education returned to in-person meetings.  They are not allowing the public to attend the meetings, but they are meeting in-person and taking comments via phone and email.  As they have seen this evening, there are still some glitches with respect to Zoom, and he hopes that the Village Council considers at least them meeting in person someplace so that we are done with those technical glitches.  Schools are back in session, and he thinks it is time that the Village Council starts to meet again in-person.

 

Matthew Lindenberg, 165 Claremont Road, stated that on behalf of the entire One Village One Vote committee of petitioners he wanted to thank their supporters throughout the Village.  They are thrilled that the question of consolidating Ridgewood’s Village Council and Board of Education elections to November will be put to the voters on this Novembers ballot.  They are committed to spending the next two months until election day continuing to educate the community on the benefits, especially the historically significantly higher voter turnout in November.  They believe this ensures better representation on all Board of Education matters and Village Council matters, including the budgeting processes, as well as the ability to save tens of thousands of dollars or more per year.  They know and respect the fact that some members of the community disagree with them and they are happy to continue to engage in fact based discussions on this issue.  He added that it is important to share the facts and the data behind their efforts.  In an effort to do so, they have shared all of their data and sources on their webpage onevillageonevote.com.  Mr. Lindenberg stated that they encourage everyone in the community to vote yes on this important ballot question when they vote this Fall and join them in helping to make this progress.

 

Laurie Weber, 235 South Irving Street, stated that putting a question on the ballot that seeks to remove a voting right on the school budget requires five times the signatures that were stated on the petitions circulated by the One Vote campaign.  She added that every allegation made on the One Vote website, including the ones that Mr. Lindenberg cited in his comments can be factually disputed.  Ridgewood statistics support that our local elections have enjoyed a larger turnout in the Spring than the Board of Education enjoyed in November.  She stated that the school safety issues, and other issues can all be addressed.  What disturbs her about the way that this process has proceeded is that now they are trying to put this directly on the ballot, completely bypassing the opportunity for a public hearing where the Village Council gets to have a reading of this and the community gets to have a vigorous and thorough discussion of this.

 

Ms. Weber stated that this attempt by the One Vote campaign to bypass the laws that exist to protect voter rights, to propagate misinformation, and now to bypass the entire public participation process and move this to a vote is beyond offensive.  She would sincerely hope that the Village Council and the Village Attorney stand up for the rights of the entire community of voters here and not just for five of them who have managed to convince 500 of promises they will not be able to keep.  

 

Lauren Riker, 224 South Irving Street, stated that she would like to echo what Ms. Weber just said and the right to have the vote on the school budget when it’s a meaningful time is important to her and her family.  She has a son that is in the Ridgewood School System and she thinks it is important that she retains that right and she does not think it’s fair that the proper process is being bypassed by going to a court and not having a public hearing regarding this.

 

Deborah Steinbaum, 295 Grandview Circle, stated that she is one of the One Village One Vote petitioners and she appreciates all the spirited discussion about the ballot initiative.  She thinks it is really important for us to sit down with a deep breath and realize the best way for people to have their say in the matter is to put it to a vote.  It is something that people do care deeply about and truly what better way for people to have a full community airing of this topic than by letting them go to the ballot.  November will be the perfect time for us to address this and she appreciates that everyone cares deeply about our community, as does she, and she thinks this is going to be a really productive discussion among people who care about Ridgewood.  She stated that they would encourage everyone to come out and they are more than willing to discuss the facts that they have put on the website, as there is nothing that is alternative or questionable about them, and interpretation may differ.  She thinks it is important that they come to a community determination of them.  

 

Siobhan Crann Winograd, 274 Ivy Place, stated that she thinks at this point everyone should be on the same page that no matter what your vote would be in November there is a public question.  They spent the past 18 months engaging with the community, Board of Education, and the Village Council.  Every time they issue a fact, all of their facts are submitted directly to the Village Council and the Board of Education.  If there is any discrepancy or something that they are promoting, they do feel that including the Village Council as public officials with their messaging would be the perfect opportunity, if there was a mistake, the Council would let them know.  Ms. Winograd stated that there is no doubt there is a question and the best place for a question such as this is on the ballot.  She added that it is important for the people who are listening to this, they are a group of citizens who motivated to do this, but the Village Council could have placed the question there.  Since they have been writing about this for almost two years, and several of their requests have gone unresponded to, they are motivated to do this.

 

Ms. Winograd stated that she thinks at this point, in time to move forward, they should all acknowledge there is going to be a question and how people want to answer it is up to them.  People can vote their will and their way, and all of us should want that.  She said that if they got something wrong, the Village Council gets emails from them every time they issue a fact, and they would welcome an email if they got something wrong, rather than comments from the dais that something is wrong.  They could have made a mistake some way but they feel that their facts are cited, thorough, and vetted.  There is a question and there is no better place to answer it than on the ballot this November.

 

Linda Tarzian, 576 Highland Avenue, stated that she wanted to make a comment in support of maintaining the citizen taxpayer right to vote and the need to adhere to all appropriate protocols and not eliminate them in the face of pressure tactics to remove our civic duty to vote.  She encouraged the Board of Education to disregard this nefarious motion to remove the right to vote and to take seriously the responsibility to us as taxpayers.

 

Anne Loving, 342 South Irving Street, stated that she is calling to say that they have been doing great work in the downtown to help support the businesses and she is very happy that they are moving to the west side and to the businesses over there.  She has concerns about the east end of Ridgewood Avenue as they seem to be quite neglected and she hopes that they will do something in that important area, as well.

 

Ms. Loving stated that regarding One Village One Vote, she is completely opposed to it because it would take away their legal right to vote on the Board of Education budget.  She added that it is really outrageous, possibly hilarious, that they are proposing that we have a vote on denying us our right to vote.  Her opinion on this initiative is not really the main concern here; this group has put forth false information during their petition drive and their lawyer gave false information to the Judge.  This is disgraceful and she sincerely hopes that the Judge’s decision is going to be challenged by our government. 

 

There were no additional comments from the public, and Mayor Knudsen closed public comment.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that she has expressed her concerns repeatedly that the information shared relative to the cost savings by election consolidation the numbers are inaccurate and she will certainly be happy to detail those next week.  She added that a few weeks ago they were told $100,000 and now its tens of thousands of dollars, she thinks it is important to note the savings to the Village taxpayers by maintain those elections is far greater than $100,000 and she will outline that significant savings to not consolidating next week during the Public Meeting.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that she looked at the figures that One Village One Vote has put forward and it comports with what she has seen in our budget figures so far so she hasn’t seen so far that their facts are inaccurate.  Mayor Knudsen stated that she will detail the figures next week, but reiterated that it is a significant savings to Ridgewood taxpayers to maintain the Spring vote on the budget, a long term tax savings to the taxpayers.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked Mr. Rogers about at the beginning of the meeting how he talked about the litigation and is there an opportunity for the Village Council to get a special meeting so that they can talk maybe before the next meeting.  Mr. Rogers stated that the Village Council could schedule a special meeting according to the Open Public Meetings Act and he doesn’t know when they could fit that it.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that because all of this is going on and they have not been able to meet as a Council to even discuss it, she would feel more comfortable if the five Village Councilmembers could get together to discuss it.  Mr. Rogers stated that unfortunately it can’t be done without the Open Public Meetings Act being satisfied, and it would be difficult with the next meeting a week away and the holiday weekend.  Councilwoman Walsh asked if they could set it for Tuesday.  Mr. Rogers stated that they could talk to Ms. Mailander to see if that could be done.  Mayor Knudsen stated that it was a great point and they would see what they could do with that.

 

  1. ADJOURNMENT

 

There being no further business to come before the Village Council, on a motion by Deputy Mayor Sedon, seconded by Councilwoman Walsh, and carried unanimously by voice vote, the Village Council’s Work Session was adjourned at 9:31 P.M.

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________

                                                                                      Susan Knudsen                         

                                                                                                              Mayor                                    

 

 

 

 

______________________________

              Donna M. Jackson

           Deputy Village Clerk

 A REGULAR WORK SESSION OF THE VILLAGE COUNCIL OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD HELD VIA ZOOM, DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, ON SEPTEMBER 2, 2020 AT 7:30 P.M.

 

  1. CALL TO ORDER – OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT – ROLL CALL – FLAG     SALUTE

 

Mayor Knudsen called the meeting to order at 7:36 P.M. and read the Statement of Compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act.  At roll call the following were present: Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen.  Also present were Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk; Donna Jackson, Deputy Village Clerk; and Matthew Rogers, Village Attorney.

 

Mayor Knudsen led those in attendance in the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag as well as in a Moment of Silence to honor the brave men and women serving in our nation’s armed forces, all our first responders, and especially for our Ridgewood Police Officers.

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

There were no comments from the public.

 

  1. VILLAGE CLERK – CERTIFICATION OF PETITION – ONE VILLAGE, ONE VOTE

 

Mr. Rogers stated that it has always been custom and practice for the Village Council not to comment on pending litigation.  A decision came down after 5:00 P.M. today, and he needs time to review it and will talk with all of the members of the Village Council tomorrow with regard to the next steps.

 

  1. MANAGERS REPORT

 

Welcome Back to Ridgewood, New Jersey – Ms. Mailander stated that Welcome Back to Ridgewood includes outdoor dining and free music all day Saturday and Sunday on East Ridgewood Avenue from Broad Street to Walnut Street and the side streets of Oak, Chestnut, and Prospect Streets.  Everything is closed to cars in that area and it creates a pedestrian mall.

 

Hudson Street Garage – Ms. Mailander stated that the first floor is open for business, it is $1.00 per hour to be paid at the kiosk at the Hudson Street entrance and is a three hour limit.

 

Labor Day – On Monday, September 7th, Village Offices will be closed.  Recycling and Sanitation pickup services are suspended and the Recycling Center will also be closed.

 

September 11th Memorial – To honor the memory of the 12 Ridgewood residents lost on 9/11, portraits of each resident are displayed in the Ridgewood Public Library Auditorium for the month of September.  The Library is open seven days a week and offers a place for reflection.

 

                                                                                                                                      

U.S. Census – Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has increased to an 83% response rate, and she asked that residents please fill out the census online or by phone no later than September 30th as we have our goal of a 100% response rate.

 

Rear Yard Garbage Collection – Ms. Mailander stated that rear yard garbage pickup resumed in July, so residents no longer need to bring their garbage cans to the street.

 

Election – Ms. Mailander stated that election season is upon us and election signs or any other signs may not be placed in the planting strip between the curb and sidewalk or on any public property.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the General Election will be primarily vote by mail.  Voters may mail back their ballots to the County via U.S. Mail or they may put it in the ballot box outside of the Village Hall lobby, or may bring it to their polling location.  You can also vote by provisional paper ballot at the polling location.  There will be ADA voting machines available in the polling locations, but they would only be used for those unable to mark the mail in ballots.

 

Resident Volunteers – Ms. Mailander stated that the Village Council is seeking resident volunteers to serve on Boards and Committees.  These include the Planning Board, Zoning Board of Adjustment, Central Business District Advisory Committee, Ridgewood Community Center Advisory Board, Ridgewood Arts Council, Shade Tree Commission, Green Ridgewood, Ridgewood Green Team, and the Open Space Committee.  The deadline to apply is September 8th.  Please submit the Citizen Volunteer Leadership Form, which is found on the website under Forms, page 2, it says Village Clerk, and then you will see the form.  Also, submit a resume or biography of your accomplishments or what you have done in life and a cover letter indicating which Boards you would like to serve on. 

 

Cancellations of Events – Ms. Mailander stated that due to COVID-19, there are various cancellations of events.  The Chamber of Commerce Car Show, scheduled for 9/11, has been canceled, as has Coffee with the Council which was scheduled for 9/12, and then the Parks and Recreation Street Fair was also canceled which was scheduled for 9/20.

 

Chamber of Commerce – Ms. Mailander stated that the Chamber of Commerce will host their Sidewalk Sale Days inside and out on October 1st, 2nd, and 3rd.

 

Household Hazardous Waste Collection – Ms. Mailander stated that the Bergen County Utilities Authority will be holding their Household Hazardous Waste collection on September 12th from 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. at Bergen County Campgaw Reservation in Mahwah. 

 

Upcoming Village Council Meetings – Ms. Mailander stated that the upcoming Village Council meetings are all televised live and are on Zoom.  September 9th is the Village Council Public Meeting, September 23rd is the Village Council Public Work Session, and October 7th is a Village Council Public Work Session.

 

Social Security Administration – Ms. Mailander stated that on behalf of the Social Security Administration, during the Coronavirus Pandemic, they continue to provide help to anyone who may need social security help.  You can apply for disability, Medicare benefits, check the status of an application or appeal, request a replacement social security card, print a benefit verification letter, and much more services are provided online.  They know that many people want to converse with someone, so they do have phone help.  There will be information about this posted on the Village website

 

  1. COUNCIL REPORTS

 

Chamber of Commerce – Councilwoman Perron stated that the next meeting is September 9th, although work has been getting done over the past month, especially with respect to the pedestrian mall.

 

Green Ridgewood – Councilwoman Perron stated that Green Ridgewood will meet on Thursday at 7:00 P.M. and it is open to the public.

 

Open Space – Councilwoman Perron stated that Open Space met on August 20th and Rob Kearny who is an employee of the Ridgewood Water Utility presented.  He is going for a Graduate Degree in GIS Mapping, so it was really interesting how you map natural resources.  He is urging people to help him draft an Environmental Resources Inventory for the town, and she signed up to do the Dunham Trail.  They are looking for more volunteers to help with that endeavor, which overlaps with his membership in Green Ridgewood.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if people interested in participating in the Inventory could email Councilwoman Perron directly.  Councilwoman Perron stated yes, adding that her email is pperron@ridgewoodnj.net.

 

Central Business District Advisory Committee – Councilwoman Perron stated that the CBD Advisory Committee is really trying to help the downtown businesses thrive during this difficult time.  The Pilot Program for “Grab and Go” parking spaces is up and running and they are all really excited about that.  There are ten spaces throughout town on the North/South streets.  Those are free, 15-minute parking spaces for people who are either picking up contactless delivery from a restaurant or they can run a very quick errand in that time.  She encouraged people to look for those signs and use those spots.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that they are also considering a Visitors Bureau for the Central Business District in the form of a website, so that people from Franklin Lakes or Glen Rock can see what is going on in Ridgewood.  They are continuing to work on handouts and literature for potential tenants in the multi-family housing complexes, to again provide coupons to businesses downtown, invite them to look around the Village and see what’s attractive, and if they want to move here.

 

Planning Board – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that the Planning Board met last night and reviewed the final draft of the first section of the Master Plan – Our Village, Our Future.  It was a huge step in the right direction for the Master Plan.  There was going to be a Hopper Ridge Condominium Association application but it was moved to October 6th.

 

Citizen Safety Advisory Committee – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that they will be meeting on September 17th, and they hopefully will be meeting in person but that will be announced in the future.

 

Welcome Back, Ridgewood – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she hoped everyone was able to take advantage of the concerts on Saturdays and Sundays at Van Neste downtown as they have been fabulous.

 

Green Team – Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that tomorrow at 7:30 P.M. the Green Team will meet via Zoom.

 

Kasschau Shell – Mayor Knudsen pointed out that the Kasschau Shell ended their season and she gave a great shoutout to the Kasschau Shell Committee, Parks and Recreation, and especially Gail McCarthy for her leadership this fabulous season and all of that hard work, energy, and effort are greatly appreciated.

 

  1. DISCUSSION

             

  1. Ridgewood Water

 

  1. Award Contract – Roof Repairs to Various Ridgewood Water Facilities

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is for two of the facilities.  Three quotes were obtained.  This is the third year of continuing these improvements.  There were eleven roof structures improved in 2018, eight were improved in 2019, and two are scheduled for this year.  American Construction Chimney and Roofing Specialist of Cliffside Park had the lowest quote of $25,800.  So, the recommendation is to award it to this company and the funding is established in the Water Utility capital budget.

 

  1. Award Professional Services Contract – Preliminary Design Services for PFAS Treatment & Associated Projects

 

Ms. Mailander stated that in June of this year, Mott MacDonald, our consultant, completed the PFAS Planning and Treatment Study.  The Study mapped out a master plan of alternatives to reconfigure some of the treatment systems to eliminate concentrations of PFAS.  The primary focus of the plan is to centralize treatment for efficiency and to take advantage of sites that have more space for the required treatment equipment.  Ridgewood Water would like to proceed with the preliminary design and four of the thirteen proposed treatment plans.  So far, treatment has been installed and is operational at the Carr Treatment Plant.  Design evaluations are underway for the Marr Ravine, Irving/Linwood, Upgraded Carr, and Twinney Plants.  All of these plants serve the largest pressure zone for the system which is a low pressure zone.  The focus for the next preliminary design is to design treatment plants in other operational zones, such as the intermediate and high zones, and one other geographical location in the low.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that in addition to the preliminary design services, Mott MacDonald with assist with the treatment plant at Carr, evaluate all of the raw water pipeline that are required for the new system buildout, and participate in the rate making analysis with our hired rate professional and attend meetings with NJDEP to lay out the compliance schedule for meeting the new PFAS regulations.  Mott MacDonald was previously Hatch Mott MacDonald, and so they have been involved with numerous projects with Ridgewood Water for decades.  Based on their past project experience and working knowledge of our system, they will be best suited to perform this professional engineering service.  The recommendation is to award it to Mott MacDonald of Iselin in an amount not to exceed $277,600.  Funding for this is in the Water capital budget.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if these were the types of costs that the Village is asking for reimbursement in the pending litigation.  Mr. Calbi stated that yes, they were.

 

  1. Award Contract – Replacement of Water Mains

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is on Jefferson Street and Salem Lane.  Bids were received yesterday, and there were 22 plan holders eligible to bid and they received 15 bids.  They range from a low of $814,290 to a high of $1,821,750.  The low bid received was from On Cue Technologies of Oradell.  They submitted a complete bid package and all necessary information, and they have also successfully worked for the Village in the past.  This will be funded from the Ridgewood Water capital budget.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked with a spread of $1 million between bids, if are we missing something, and could they come back with change orders later on in the project.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is a huge spread, and the low bidder did put a number of items where they bid a minimal amount of $1, which are the items that were in the bid that they may or may not use.  They are taking a gamble that they will not use them.  Mr. Rutishauser knows that the contractor is very eager to start work, and the high bidder has plenty of work and put out a what is it worth to me number, which is why they were so high.  He added that the second bidder was around $830,000.

 

  1. Award Professional Services Contract – Risk Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan Updates

 

Ms. Mailander stated that on August 28th, proposals for the Professional Services for the Risk and Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan Updates were received.  Mott MacDonald of Iselin provided the lowest quote in an amount not to exceed $37,750.  Funding for this project is in the Ridgewood Water operating budget.  This is required under the America’s Water Infrastructure Act.  They have done the Emergency Response Plan and it has been updated periodically and it is time to update it again.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that this really gives her reassurance to see that Ridgewood Water is getting this design for risk assessment and an emergency response plan.  She had been wondering about this with regard to climate change.  She didn’t realize that the law had changed in 2018 such that the Water Utility had security measures for physical breaches and for cyber-attacks.  She was wondering what is it with resiliency to climate change and this answers her question.  She is glad this planning is happening.

 

  1. Parking

 

  1. Discuss Parking on Colonial Road

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that there has been ongoing issues on Colonial Road, specific to one resident having some difficulties backing out of her driveway, and because of the narrowness of the road and configuration of the limited time parking on the South side of the road versus the no parking on the North side of the road.  This particular resident has a driveway that is on a steep hill and coupled with the narrow roadway, when she backs out if someone is parked immediately on the opposite side of her driveway, she often runs into problems.  When Mayor Knudsen visited the location and had the opportunity to speak to the resident, it occurred to her that a number of years ago she recalled another resident who backed out of her driveway similarly situated and hit a tree.  When they look at the homes along the north side of the road, about six of them are high on the hill.  Their driveways are rather narrow and when they are backing out, it is difficult to maneuver.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that upon visiting the site, it occurred to her that one option might be to simply flip the no parking on the north side to the south side and the timed parking from the south side to the north side.  She added that it might be prudent to have the Police Department look into that and have Mr. Rutishauser possibly send letters to all of the residents to see if that is a solution they would be willing to work with.  It would be at least something that begins some work towards a solution there.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that if this was the same road she was thinking about, several years ago there was a fatality with a car backing out.  Mayor Knudsen stated that was a different road.  She added that there are six homes on a hill and they have narrow driveways with concrete retaining walls which make it uncomfortable to back up their driveways and pull out straight.  Flipping the parked cars along the street in that section might offer a simple solution to their struggles, and in particular this one resident.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that she didn’t know if Mr. Rutishauser or Sergeant Chuck had looked at this location before.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that he has looked at the location and has spoken to a number of residents in confidence, and they are not particularly fond of this one resident who is making this request.  They have had some vandalism of Village property on that street, consisting of someone painting their own curb yellow which required the Village to spend a considerable amount of effort with the Traffic, Signal, and Water Pollution crew to scrub the yellow paint off the curb.  There is a Police report with a certain resident threating to relocate No Parking signs for her convenience, so the history on this is kind of murky.  Mayor Knudsen stated to that point, she and Mr. Rutishauser have had this conversation, and it really speaks to whether or not the other folks would at least be receptive to just making this flip if it helps and resolves a neighborhood issue.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they could send out the survey letters, and he would talk to Ms. Mailander and Ms. Jackson about preserving the confidentiality of the replies with regards to OPRA.

 

Sergeant Chuck stated that the Police Department would definitely suggest that they do the entire roadway as it would get too confusing to have many different sections.  Ms. Mailander agreed.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she thinks CSAC hasn’t seen this yet and the resident that sent everyone an email, emailed back and forth, and the recommendation that Councilwoman Walsh had given her was to first meet with CSAC and talk about the problem there.  In the past, Colonial Road came up when Stevens Field was finished and that’s why there was this change in parking back then because there were so many people parking on Colonial Road because of Stevens Field.  She added that she thinks they have to bring that into the conversation because she knows that was one of the challenges a few years back.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that Stevens Field has been out of service for at least the last month and a half, so that has reduced the parking demand.  When he has been on the street, there are cars parked there.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that her thought is that she doesn’t necessarily think it’s a CSAC issue, per say, because it is just one of those things that it doesn’t impact the decisions that were made as a result of Stevens Field.  It maintains the same parking configurations and is merely flipping it.  It is likely because of COVID-19 and people having cars home may be part of the issue, but there was one accident that had some significant damage.  They should first establish if the residents are open to this and if there is going to be some pushback, then at least there is a starting point.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she thinks the benefit of CSAC is that you bring the residents together and they can have a conversation, as opposed to here are the results of a survey take it or leave it.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that the survey would take into consideration everyone on the block, and she is sure that not everybody is going to come to a CSAC meeting or speak, and they may only be the three or four people that want it the most or don’t want it the most.  Mayor Knudsen suggested that maybe they send out the resident survey and ask them for an email address.  Then if there is a desire to have a conversation at least they have those email addresses and before any final decision is made, they can email everyone and invite them to the CSAC meeting and this would just be a preliminary step. 

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon asked if they could put the date for the next CSAC meeting in the survey letter they send out, so if somebody gets the letter they know this is a topic of discussion and if they are interested they could come to the next CSAC meeting.  Councilwoman Walsh and Mayor Knudsen agreed.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that it was September 17th, but they don’t know where it is yet.  Ms. Mailander stated that they should know by next week.

 

  1. Budget

 

  1. Quarterly Financial Statements

 

Robert Rooney, Chief Financial Officer, stated that he provided the Village Council with revenue and expense reports through June 30th for the Current Fund, Water Fund, and Parking Utility Fund.  Tax collection through three quarters are slightly above what they did last year, which is very promising.  On sheet one of the revenues, he put asterisks by those revenues that will be in jeopardy this year.  The significant ones are municipal court, the recreation fees and permits, and uniform construction code, because of COVID those will be challenged this year and hopefully they can come close to what they anticipate.  Some of the other challenges are the timing of billing.  Overall, the revenues of the General Fund are about 46% of what they anticipate which is good news under the circumstances.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that on the appropriations side, some of the COVID expenses are recorded in the specific line items where they have been incurred, such as Signal, Building Maintenance, and then there is a catchall where they are holding expenses for COVID that have not hit these appropriations.  Those are the ones they are going to have to take a look at as they get closer to the end of the year to determine how they are going to fund those to move forward.  They have submitted requests to FEMA and to CARES for reimbursement for those expenses the Village has incurred related to COVID.  This would include overtime for the Police Department and any other Departments, so they are waiting to hear back on that.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked for those line items that aren’t timing, when would we be able to realize what the potential loss would be for that total dollar amount.  Mr. Rooney stated that probably by the end of September he would be in a better position to let them now if that is going to be in jeopardy.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that the Water Department has received 43% of their anticipated revenues, but Rich Calbi states in their conversations that July was a banner month.  There were a lot of billings because of the heat and the use of water.  We are past what he would call the hot part of the year where they have to be concerned about the purchase and usage of water.  Under appropriations for water, we have spent about 41% of what we have budgeted and they do have some capital outlay funds that are projects that are ongoing and haven’t kicked in full stream yet because of COVID.  He anticipates they are going to be ratcheting up by the end of the year.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that regarding Parking Utility Fund, they are at 31% as of June 30th.  They have suspended parking meter enforcement, so that is down, in addition to interest on investments interest rates dropped drastically as a result of COVID.  Through August, parking meter revenue has been up roughly to about 33%.  The key is commuters going back to the city, businesses start to get back in action, so we are going to keep an eye on this one.  For appropriations, they are about 38% for what they budgeted and probably have about $100,000 that they can cancel by the end of the year for other expenses that they may not have a use, for so that will temper the problem.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that on Monday, the State passed a bill, A3971, which allows the municipalities and counties and authorities to issue short term or long term, five years to ten years, of debt to compensate for the shortage of revenues and any COVID expenses that they have incurred, after reimbursement from FEMA or CARES.  Local Government will be coming out probably by the end of next week with some guidance and regulations as to how to proceed with this.  This will assist in preventing deficits in these funds that will have to be raised in future years and levelling the cost of these out.  Under circumstances like this, you can issue a special emergency which is similar to what they do for the Master Plan which allows the cost to be spread over five years.  Under this bill you would be given one year free without any interest or appropriation to put in for next year and then it’s five years after that.  They are trying to help balance these shortfalls to make sure that this doesn’t impact taxes drastically next year.  Mr. Rooney stated that hopefully by the end of September they will have all the guidance they need and he will be able to present the Village Council with a plan with his recommendation as to how to move forward and they can mitigate these issues that they are faced with right now.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that it looked like the Parking Utility was going to be in the deficit, but they could issue the bonds and then spread it out so they wouldn’t then have to cover the deficit as it has been done in the past through taxation.  Mr. Rooney stated that was correct, and under this scenario this bill would also apply to any utility.  So, if they anticipate a shortfall in these revenues which are COVID related, they will be able to issue financing to cover that so it will not impact the tax rate next year.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if the numbers meant they were anticipating an $800,000 loss or was her math off.  Councilwoman Walsh stated on the Parking Utility Fund, they should get at least 70% of the revenues.  Mr. Rooney stated no, up through August they are about 33% of what they anticipate for parking.  As far as any deficit, that remains to be seen as to what he is going to get in through September.  Right now, he is looking at a potential deficit.  There has to be an increase in volume to be able to move forward, but there is a vehicle that they can put in place moving forward so that it will not impact the General Fund.

 

  1. Declare Surplus – Abandoned Vehicle – Signal Division

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is a 2007 Nissan Xterra that was seized by the Police Department.  They have obtained a New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission Certificate of Title for this abandoned vehicle.  The request is to declare it surplus so that it can be auctioned.  Councilwoman Perron asked when the vehicle was seized.  Sergeant Chuck stated 2014.  Councilwoman Perron asked when it was forfeited.  Sergeant Chuck stated about two months ago, it was a long court process and after that the defendant passed away.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked what the value of it was.  Sergeant Chuck stated almost nothing, and actually there is some sort of trigger on it so they can’t start the car.  Mayor Knudsen stated that it is probably in really bad shape from sitting all these years.  Sergeant Chuck stated that it probably needs another coat of paint and definitely some vacuuming inside.

 

  1. Award Contract – 2021 Ford Escape – Parking Enforcement

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they have had only one vehicle for the PEO’s for over a year, and sometimes there are multiple tasks that they have to accomplish and it requires more than one car.  There are also days when the one car that they have is in service and therefor it is out of service.  They are also trying to move towards the License Plate Reader system of enforcement, so therefore they will need a second car for that, as well.  This would be from Mahwah Ford which was the lowest bidder of three quotes at a cost of $29,000.  They are also requesting to add the same warning lights as the current car which is $2,500 from Regional Communications in Paramus, and striping from American Graphics in Fair Lawn which costs $2,500.  There are already standing contracts for Regional Communications and American Graphics, so the total cost of the vehicle would be $34,000.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked why is it that they never look at the more utility type vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they did a trial with an electric model last summer.  They ran into two problems.  When it rained they weren’t getting much rain protection and the equipment that the PEO’s were using wasn’t able to recharge in that vehicle.  Also, a couple of their responsibilities took them over the highway and roadways that are over 25 mph.  The Cushman’s are low speed vehicles only, so there are a few places where they can’t travel with that vehicle.  Mayor Knudsen asked what the cost is for one of those vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that the Cushman was about $18,000.  They also looked at two door Smart cars, which are more expensive.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked about other electric vehicles or hybrid vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they didn’t look that deeply into it as the fuel economy on this Escape is pretty good.  They hybrids are normally a little more expensive to purchase, and the problem they ran into this year is that most State contracts expired, so they are pretty much just buying what is out there and its driving the costs up a little more.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked about the license plate reader, and if there was a specific setup for it, or could they use it in a sedan as opposed to an SUV.  Sergeant Chuck stated that the difference between the sedan and the SUV was $1,100, and then they lose 4 wheel drive capabilities.  Also, the set up takes a little more space inside the car and the sedan is a little tighter, so it may have been more uncomfortable for the driver.  They don’t want to install a $20,000 license plate system in a car that they would be getting maybe 6 months out of because then they would have to take all that equipment out and put it in another reused car.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked since they were in a deficit with the Parking Utility was it prudent to be buying a new vehicle or should they wait until the Spring.  Mr. Rooney stated that these funds have already been passed in capital through last year’s capital budget so they have been funded already.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if the license plate reader was coming soon, and also if it goes in the front seat or the back seat.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they have it in place already, and it just started last week.  The cameras are outside the car, with two cameras on the roof and two on the back of the car.  The computer system that runs the cameras, one part is in the trunk and then the part that the operator uses is attached to the car, half in the passenger seat.

 

  1. Award Contracts – Tree Plantings in Area D and Various Locations

 

Ms. Mailander stated that there were approximately 12 plan holders eligible to bid and they received 7.  There were 3 bidders that each presented the lowest price for specific trees and the general instructions indicated that they could make partial awards based on the bid results.  Therefore, they are recommending that portions of the tree planting in form of proposal solicitations be awarded to three lowest bidders, described as the lowest bid for those particular trees.  Faircut Services LLC of Little Falls, will supply 44 Yellow Wood and 40 Saw Tooth Oak, for a total of $43,832.  Downes Tree Service of Hawthorne, will supply 33 Persian Iron Wood, 24 Sugar Maple, and 23 Trident Maple, for a total of $42,320. Clarke Moynihan Landscaping and Construction LLC of Andover, will supply 13 Japanese Tree, Lilac, Maple Amoricaya, and Swamp Tooth Oak, for a total of $23,570.  The grand total of the award is $109,722 for 218 trees to be planted in the Village.  Funding for this work is in a capital ordinance.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if all of those trees are native.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they were all trees that were recommended for the Village.  Declan Madden, the Village Arborist was intimately involved in the selecting species that they put into the bid documents.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked about the species, because she looked up a couple of them and she doesn’t know for sure but it looks like some of the branches are going to be low and that would obviously be a problem.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that there were two type of species they were looking at.  They were looking for trees that are suitable for under utility wire locations, and trees for locations that don’t have any utility wires that would compromise them as they grow.  Low growing trees would go under areas with utility wires.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that if they are under utility wires, they are going to be in areas where trucks are driving.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they are trying to talk to people to plant the trees not between the curb and the sidewalk in the strip, but behind the sidewalk on the property to remove them further from the travel lane where their growth could be impeded.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked if they could tell people where the trees need to be planted, or only suggest.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the Parks Department works with the people both on the species and where it gets planted.  They also have to look at a mark out as it is ill advised to plant a tree right on top of somebody’s sanitary sewer, water service, or gas service because they may be struck during the digging.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if this was an effort to move planting the trees out of the grass strip, and do they have the ability to make that as a requirement.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the Parks Department talks to the residents and tries to convince them to plant on the inside of the sidewalk away from the parkway strip, particularly if it is very narrow.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked what they would do if someone said they didn’t want it on their part of the grass.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that was up to the arborist, if he and the homeowner cant come to an agreement then maybe they will move onto the next location.  This is in Area D, and if they get all these trees planted great, but if not everybody wants a tree they will move onto other sections.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that he would like to make a request that the arborist’s time is freed up while this planting is going on because they have had issues in the past where people were improperly planting trees or just tossing them in the ground.  Seeing that this is an investment with costs of $500 per tree, he would hate to see these dying because they weren’t being planted correctly.  He would like to see the arborist out there supervising these plantings.  Councilwoman Perron asked what the maintenance is on these trees.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that he thinks the Parks Department has a flyer that they give the homeowners that discusses the maintenance and care of the trees.  Councilwoman Perron asked if the homeowners are given gator bags and stakes to help the trees stay straight up.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the trees are staked and he believes they are supplied with a gator bag; however, the resident is asked to fill the gator bag.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked since there is only watering two days a week, is there any kind of exception if they are getting a tree and allowed to water more often.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the gator bags are there and can be filled with a hose any time and that is not a restricted item under the stage two requirements.  For an exemption to the irrigation restrictions, they would have to contact the Water Company and present their case.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked if these plantings were for this Fall.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is intended for this Fall.  That’s why if the Council is in favor of what is presented, and it is approved next week, he will start issuing the contracts right away.  Each of the three vendors will be lined up to get their trees ordered and then get ready to plant them once they’re in a dormant state.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if the Village ordinance states that if you have a new tree planted you are permitted to water it.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that you are always permitted to hand water.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated not between the hours of 10:00 A.M. and 6:00 P.M., which a lot of people don’t know.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that they could pull a hose out to it and water for a half hour once a week and that should be enough.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the watering instructions are on the flyer the resident will get when the tree is planted.  Councilwoman Perron asked that when this comes up next week, can they be reminded where Area D is.  Ms. Mailander stated that over the last three years they have completed Areas A, B, and C.

 

  1. Award Change Order – Renovation and Upgrades – Graydon Pool

 

Ms. Mailander stated that Tri-Plex Industries of South Amboy successfully performed the renovation and upgrades of the restrooms at Graydon Pool.  Their workmanship was satisfactory and they asked Tri-Plex to provide a quote for a number of items that were not in the original bid documents.  The attached change order request has been approved by the architects Connolly and Hickey.  The Change Order Number 2 to Tri-Plex Industries would be for $5,372.88.  There is sufficient funding in a capital account.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked when they were figuring this original project, why stainless steel ADA complaint grab bars, or stainless steel tamper resistant toilet paper dispensers weren’t in the plan as it seems like those are things would have to put in by an architect to be up to code.  Ms. Mailander stated that she could go to Connolly and Hickey and ask why those things weren’t included.

 

  1. Additional Award – Disposal of Ground Yard Waste

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they previously awarded a contract to B and B of West Milford for $17.00 per cubic yard for disposal of yard waste.  Nature’s Choice was $20.00 per cubic yard for disposal of grass clippings.  An additional award to B and B in the amount of $30,000 for yard waste removal is now needed.  The previous award was in the amount of $50,000.  The reason the additional yard waste was generated and needed to be disposed was due to Tropical Storm Isaias.  The good news is the expenditure for disposal of grass clippings is significantly less than what was anticipated.  The Village has spent approximately $4,950 out of a budget of $50,000, so they can actually put that money towards the disposal of yard waste.  The Village is prohibited from disposing of its yard waste materials in our leaf compost facility by our permit from the NJDEP.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she was curious why the grass clippings was so far off, and suggested it was because of less rain this year.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it depends on the growing season how much the trucks collect off the street, and it depends what residents landscapers take with them or whether they leave it at the curb.  Sometimes the loads are not always pure grass and then B and B has accepted them, and they are trying to direct materials to B and B because there is a $3 difference.

 

  1. Additional Award – Project Closeout Services – Hudson Street Garage

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has been dealing with the contaminated soils encountered during the excavations for footings for the garage and the structural soil for the Hudson Street tree planting with the assistance of First Environment.  First Environment has been providing Licensed Site Remediation Professional (LSRP) and material removal services for the garage.  They gave a proposal and an award was made in the amount of $13,600.  Since then, additional effort has been needed primarily with the structural soil that was installed for the shade trees along Hudson Street estimating that it will be another $11,800 to close out the environmental items for the garage site.  Mr. Rutishauser is recommending an award of $15,000 with this final closeout change order.  Money is available in that project construction account.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if this was for documentation of the close out as this seems like a lot for that, or is it actual substantive changes.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is substantial.  One of the things they have to do is a deed notice because there is residual contamination in place, and the LSRP also has to satisfactorily demonstrate to the DEP that the Village has put a satisfactory barrier between any residual contaminated material and the public as an institutional barrier, and for the garage that is the concrete floor.  Councilwoman Perron asked if they were paying for the professional services of the LSRP to get the final sign off from NJDEP.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that was correct.

 

  1. Award Cooperative Purchasing Contract – Compressor Breathing Air Filling System – Fire Department

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they were going to discuss this previously but it was removed from the agenda because they didn’t have a funding source.  A general capital ordinance was introduced which included the compressor to fill the bottles, for $29,990 under NPP.GOV Contract, which is a cooperative purchasing contract.  They will pay for it from the Operating Budget until the Capital Account becomes available.  The award is to Air & Gas Technologies of Cliffwood Beach.

 

  1. Policy

 

  1. Discussion of Suspended CBD Ordinances

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that over the past couple of months, Welcome Back to Ridgewood, New Jersey has been meeting and during the course of that time a number of ordinances have been suspended to help facilitate the Pedestrian Plaza to accommodate on-street dining to add balloons and other such things.  She thought it was important to put together a list of all the ordinances that have been suspended as she thinks it should be handled through a resolution by the Village Council.  In the interim, one of the things that came up was the opportunity to bring the west side of West Ridgewood Avenue/Wilsey Square into this and encourage shoppers and diners to go to that side of the train tracks, and conversely to the east side of the pedestrian plaza.  One of the suggestions was to add lights to the top of the buildings along Wilsey.  The building owner has ordered lights and they would test them on one building and then they would continue to do the entire run of Wilsey and continue onto West Ridgewood Avenue.  Mayor Knudsen stated that if the Village Council is in favor of suspending ordinances that would be required in order to keep those lights there.  

 

Mayor Knudsen referred to the Village Code Chapters, and added that the Planning Board took a look at this last night and determined that it was a positive impact and something worthwhile looking at and allowing to happen.  She asked if the Village Council was willing to do a resolution next week, and in the interim if they do the lights tomorrow night as a test run, they would allow them to leave those up until the resolution has passed.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if it was a string of lights.  Mayor Knudsen stated that they are string lights that are going to be a warm yellow light to give a glow over on Wilsey.  There is some signage that would appear as you are walking into the tunnel encouraging folks to visit the West side and way finder stickers to put on the ground.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she has those lights on her back deck and they are very nice.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that she didn’t circulate the letter from the Planning Board, but she read the contents of the letter to the Village Council.  It is really a review and trying to give some attention to that other side of the railroad tracks.  If everybody is agreeable and they are going to do that, then they would allow the building owner to keep the lights up.  Over Zoom Councilwoman Reynolds showed some documents from the Planning Board to the Village Council.  Councilwoman Walsh asked if each property owner does their own.  Mayor Knudsen stated that she thinks they are going to work together to accomplish this so it all appears as a seamless effort.  Councilwoman Perron stated that she had been going to the Subcommittee meetings twice a week for this, and basically it is two landlords for all of those shops and one of them also owns the property where Smoked is located, which would look great with some lights.  Mayor Knudsen stated that the Planning Board recommended expanding on this along Garber and West Ridgewood Avenue, as well.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that the important piece is that they are open and agreeable to suspending that ordinance temporarily and then looking at whether or not down the road there is an ability to rethink that ordinance entirely.  The Village Council was agreeable to that.  Mayor Knudsen stated that they would have a list of the other ordinances compiled by next week.  They did a pilot of expanding Steel Wheel and S. Egidio into the parking spaces temporarily to allow them to participate in the pedestrian plaza, but the thought was to allow them to leave it there as the restaurants increase to 25% capacity.  Felina and Sook also wanted to give it a shot, so two of them have decided they would do a pilot program and it has been successful.  This piece is very temporary and they have worked with the Police Department.

 

  1. Operations

 

  1. Authorize Joining Omnia Partners Cooperative Purchasing Program

 

Ms. Mailander stated that there was a memo from Mr. Rooney stating that they are always trying to reduce costs and provide services to our residents.  The Village has used various Cooperative Purchasing Programs and currently participates in 14 of them.  This allows them to find cost savings and expand on valuable resources.  Omnia Partners Public Sector is another cooperative purchasing program that will add numerous vendors to our database.  It is free for the Village to join.

 

  1. Authorize Online Auction Service – GovDeals – Sourcewell

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has participated in the Cooperative Purchasing through Sourcewell.  GovDeals, Inc. is an authorized auction site through Sourcewell, and the Village has used them in the past.  Municibid was used over the past year as it is now under State Contract.  GovDeals is nationwide and has greater traffic, and there is also more customer service with them.  This is a resolution to authorize the use of GovDeals to auction surplus property when MuniciBid is ineffective, and it is also an additional resource to dispose of Village property so that they get the greatest return for the taxpayer.

 

  1. REVIEW OF SEPTEMBER 13, 2020 PUBLIC MEETING AGENDA

 

Proclamations: Fire Prevention Week; Gold Star Mother’s Day; National Breast Cancer Awareness Week; and Proclaim September National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.

 

There are no ordinances for introduction for Ridgewood Water.

 

There are no ordinances for public hearing for Ridgewood Water.

 

Resolutions for Ridgewood Water include: Award Contract – Roof Repairs to Various Ridgewood Water Facilities; Title 59 Approval – Water Main Replacement – Jefferson Street and Salem Lane; Award Contract – Water Main Replacement – Jefferson Street and Salem Lane; Award Professional Services Contract – Preliminary Design Services for PFAS Treatment and Associated Projects; and Award Professional Services Contract – Risk Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan.

 

There are no ordinances for introduction.

 

Ordinances for public hearing include: Amend Chapter 265 – Vehicles and Traffic – Placement of Stop Signs in Hudson Street Garage; Amend Village Code to Allow Additional Village Employees to Perform General Code Enforcement Duties; Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Allow Accessible Ramps on One-Family and Two-Family Dwellings to be Reviewed by the Site Plan Exemption Committee; Bond Ordinance – General Capital; Bond Ordinance – Supplemental Appropriation for Front End Loader; and Bond Ordinance – Circle Avenue Drainage Improvements.

 

Resolutions include: Award Contract – Purchase of 2021 Ford Escape – Police Department; Award Contract – Additional Award – Disposal of Yard Waste; Award Contract – Hudson Street Lots – Additional Environmental Technical Support for Project Closeout; Award Contract – Compressor Breathing Air Filling System; Title 59 Approval – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Contract Under Sourcewell Cooperative Purchasing Program – On-line Auction Services for Surplus Property; Authorize Change Order – Renovation and Upgrades – Graydon Pool Bathrooms; Authorize Joining Omnia Partners Public Sector Cooperative Purchasing Program; and Declare Property Surplus – Abandoned Vehicle.

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

Boyd Loving, 342 South Irving Street, stated that he is eagerly awaiting the reopening of Graydon Pool this coming Saturday, as it was closed Monday through Friday because of the unavailability of lifeguards.  He thanked the Village Council for pushing to have the pool open this year as it has been absolutely delightful.  There were many communities that did not open their pools this year and he is thankful that the Council made the decision to open ours.  The water quality has been the best he has ever seen, and he wanted to thank the staff that are taking care of the pool.  As far as he knows, there have been no virus outbreaks at the pool and it has been an absolute delight to be over there.

 

Mr. Loving stated that Mr. Rooney talked about revenue which brings to mind that they have the Airbrook space that was vacated and he has heard no discussion during open meetings about what is being done to fill that space as it was a significant revenue loss when that space was vacated.  There was also some talk about parking, and his concerns were they ever going to get back to a demand that meets or exceeds what happened pre-pandemic or do they have too much parking inventory now.  Obviously, they have to wait and see, but there is a possibility that exists that people will not be commuting to the City as much and there may not be a need for all this parking.  Mr. Loving stated that he hopes an evaluation takes place at some point regarding the parking.  Possibly they have too much parking and can turn some of this into a ratable in some fashion.

 

Mr. Loving stated that effective this past week, the Board of Education returned to in-person meetings.  They are not allowing the public to attend the meetings, but they are meeting in-person and taking comments via phone and email.  As they have seen this evening, there are still some glitches with respect to Zoom, and he hopes that the Village Council considers at least them meeting in person someplace so that we are done with those technical glitches.  Schools are back in session, and he thinks it is time that the Village Council starts to meet again in-person.

 

Matthew Lindenberg, 165 Claremont Road, stated that on behalf of the entire One Village One Vote committee of petitioners he wanted to thank their supporters throughout the Village.  They are thrilled that the question of consolidating Ridgewood’s Village Council and Board of Education elections to November will be put to the voters on this Novembers ballot.  They are committed to spending the next two months until election day continuing to educate the community on the benefits, especially the historically significantly higher voter turnout in November.  They believe this ensures better representation on all Board of Education matters and Village Council matters, including the budgeting processes, as well as the ability to save tens of thousands of dollars or more per year.  They know and respect the fact that some members of the community disagree with them and they are happy to continue to engage in fact based discussions on this issue.  He added that it is important to share the facts and the data behind their efforts.  In an effort to do so, they have shared all of their data and sources on their webpage onevillageonevote.com.  Mr. Lindenberg stated that they encourage everyone in the community to vote yes on this important ballot question when they vote this Fall and join them in helping to make this progress.

 

Laurie Weber, 235 South Irving Street, stated that putting a question on the ballot that seeks to remove a voting right on the school budget requires five times the signatures that were stated on the petitions circulated by the One Vote campaign.  She added that every allegation made on the One Vote website, including the ones that Mr. Lindenberg cited in his comments can be factually disputed.  Ridgewood statistics support that our local elections have enjoyed a larger turnout in the Spring than the Board of Education enjoyed in November.  She stated that the school safety issues, and other issues can all be addressed.  What disturbs her about the way that this process has proceeded is that now they are trying to put this directly on the ballot, completely bypassing the opportunity for a public hearing where the Village Council gets to have a reading of this and the community gets to have a vigorous and thorough discussion of this.

 

Ms. Weber stated that this attempt by the One Vote campaign to bypass the laws that exist to protect voter rights, to propagate misinformation, and now to bypass the entire public participation process and move this to a vote is beyond offensive.  She would sincerely hope that the Village Council and the Village Attorney stand up for the rights of the entire community of voters here and not just for five of them who have managed to convince 500 of promises they will not be able to keep.  

 

Lauren Riker, 224 South Irving Street, stated that she would like to echo what Ms. Weber just said and the right to have the vote on the school budget when it’s a meaningful time is important to her and her family.  She has a son that is in the Ridgewood School System and she thinks it is important that she retains that right and she does not think it’s fair that the proper process is being bypassed by going to a court and not having a public hearing regarding this.

 

Deborah Steinbaum, 295 Grandview Circle, stated that she is one of the One Village One Vote petitioners and she appreciates all the spirited discussion about the ballot initiative.  She thinks it is really important for us to sit down with a deep breath and realize the best way for people to have their say in the matter is to put it to a vote.  It is something that people do care deeply about and truly what better way for people to have a full community airing of this topic than by letting them go to the ballot.  November will be the perfect time for us to address this and she appreciates that everyone cares deeply about our community, as does she, and she thinks this is going to be a really productive discussion among people who care about Ridgewood.  She stated that they would encourage everyone to come out and they are more than willing to discuss the facts that they have put on the website, as there is nothing that is alternative or questionable about them, and interpretation may differ.  She thinks it is important that they come to a community determination of them.  

 

Siobhan Crann Winograd, 274 Ivy Place, stated that she thinks at this point everyone should be on the same page that no matter what your vote would be in November there is a public question.  They spent the past 18 months engaging with the community, Board of Education, and the Village Council.  Every time they issue a fact, all of their facts are submitted directly to the Village Council and the Board of Education.  If there is any discrepancy or something that they are promoting, they do feel that including the Village Council as public officials with their messaging would be the perfect opportunity, if there was a mistake, the Council would let them know.  Ms. Winograd stated that there is no doubt there is a question and the best place for a question such as this is on the ballot.  She added that it is important for the people who are listening to this, they are a group of citizens who motivated to do this, but the Village Council could have placed the question there.  Since they have been writing about this for almost two years, and several of their requests have gone unresponded to, they are motivated to do this.

 

Ms. Winograd stated that she thinks at this point, in time to move forward, they should all acknowledge there is going to be a question and how people want to answer it is up to them.  People can vote their will and their way, and all of us should want that.  She said that if they got something wrong, the Village Council gets emails from them every time they issue a fact, and they would welcome an email if they got something wrong, rather than comments from the dais that something is wrong.  They could have made a mistake some way but they feel that their facts are cited, thorough, and vetted.  There is a question and there is no better place to answer it than on the ballot this November.

 

Linda Tarzian, 576 Highland Avenue, stated that she wanted to make a comment in support of maintaining the citizen taxpayer right to vote and the need to adhere to all appropriate protocols and not eliminate them in the face of pressure tactics to remove our civic duty to vote.  She encouraged the Board of Education to disregard this nefarious motion to remove the right to vote and to take seriously the responsibility to us as taxpayers.

 

Anne Loving, 342 South Irving Street, stated that she is calling to say that they have been doing great work in the downtown to help support the businesses and she is very happy that they are moving to the west side and to the businesses over there.  She has concerns about the east end of Ridgewood Avenue as they seem to be quite neglected and she hopes that they will do something in that important area, as well.

 

Ms. Loving stated that regarding One Village One Vote, she is completely opposed to it because it would take away their legal right to vote on the Board of Education budget.  She added that it is really outrageous, possibly hilarious, that they are proposing that we have a vote on denying us our right to vote.  Her opinion on this initiative is not really the main concern here; this group has put forth false information during their petition drive and their lawyer gave false information to the Judge.  This is disgraceful and she sincerely hopes that the Judge’s decision is going to be challenged by our government. 

 

There were no additional comments from the public, and Mayor Knudsen closed public comment.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that she has expressed her concerns repeatedly that the information shared relative to the cost savings by election consolidation the numbers are inaccurate and she will certainly be happy to detail those next week.  She added that a few weeks ago they were told $100,000 and now its tens of thousands of dollars, she thinks it is important to note the savings to the Village taxpayers by maintain those elections is far greater than $100,000 and she will outline that significant savings to not consolidating next week during the Public Meeting.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that she looked at the figures that One Village One Vote has put forward and it comports with what she has seen in our budget figures so far so she hasn’t seen so far that their facts are inaccurate.  Mayor Knudsen stated that she will detail the figures next week, but reiterated that it is a significant savings to Ridgewood taxpayers to maintain the Spring vote on the budget, a long term tax savings to the taxpayers.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked Mr. Rogers about at the beginning of the meeting how he talked about the litigation and is there an opportunity for the Village Council to get a special meeting so that they can talk maybe before the next meeting.  Mr. Rogers stated that the Village Council could schedule a special meeting according to the Open Public Meetings Act and he doesn’t know when they could fit that it.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that because all of this is going on and they have not been able to meet as a Council to even discuss it, she would feel more comfortable if the five Village Councilmembers could get together to discuss it.  Mr. Rogers stated that unfortunately it can’t be done without the Open Public Meetings Act being satisfied, and it would be difficult with the next meeting a week away and the holiday weekend.  Councilwoman Walsh asked if they could set it for Tuesday.  Mr. Rogers stated that they could talk to Ms. Mailander to see if that could be done.  Mayor Knudsen stated that it was a great point and they would see what they could do with that.

 

  1. ADJOURNMENT

 

There being no further business to come before the Village Council, on a motion by Deputy Mayor Sedon, seconded by Councilwoman Walsh, and carried unanimously by voice vote, the Village Council’s Work Session was adjourned at 9:31 P.M.

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________

                                                                                      Susan Knudsen                         

                                                                                                              Mayor                                    

 

 

 

 

______________________________

              Donna M. Jackson

           Deputy Village Clerk

 A REGULAR WORK SESSION OF THE VILLAGE COUNCIL OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD HELD VIA ZOOM, DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, ON SEPTEMBER 2, 2020 AT 7:30 P.M.

 

  1. CALL TO ORDER – OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT – ROLL CALL – FLAG     SALUTE

 

Mayor Knudsen called the meeting to order at 7:36 P.M. and read the Statement of Compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act.  At roll call the following were present: Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen.  Also present were Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk; Donna Jackson, Deputy Village Clerk; and Matthew Rogers, Village Attorney.

 

Mayor Knudsen led those in attendance in the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag as well as in a Moment of Silence to honor the brave men and women serving in our nation’s armed forces, all our first responders, and especially for our Ridgewood Police Officers.

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

There were no comments from the public.

 

  1. VILLAGE CLERK – CERTIFICATION OF PETITION – ONE VILLAGE, ONE VOTE

 

Mr. Rogers stated that it has always been custom and practice for the Village Council not to comment on pending litigation.  A decision came down after 5:00 P.M. today, and he needs time to review it and will talk with all of the members of the Village Council tomorrow with regard to the next steps.

 

  1. MANAGERS REPORT

 

Welcome Back to Ridgewood, New Jersey – Ms. Mailander stated that Welcome Back to Ridgewood includes outdoor dining and free music all day Saturday and Sunday on East Ridgewood Avenue from Broad Street to Walnut Street and the side streets of Oak, Chestnut, and Prospect Streets.  Everything is closed to cars in that area and it creates a pedestrian mall.

 

Hudson Street Garage – Ms. Mailander stated that the first floor is open for business, it is $1.00 per hour to be paid at the kiosk at the Hudson Street entrance and is a three hour limit.

 

Labor Day – On Monday, September 7th, Village Offices will be closed.  Recycling and Sanitation pickup services are suspended and the Recycling Center will also be closed.

 

September 11th Memorial – To honor the memory of the 12 Ridgewood residents lost on 9/11, portraits of each resident are displayed in the Ridgewood Public Library Auditorium for the month of September.  The Library is open seven days a week and offers a place for reflection.

 

                                                                                                                                      

U.S. Census – Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has increased to an 83% response rate, and she asked that residents please fill out the census online or by phone no later than September 30th as we have our goal of a 100% response rate.

 

Rear Yard Garbage Collection – Ms. Mailander stated that rear yard garbage pickup resumed in July, so residents no longer need to bring their garbage cans to the street.

 

Election – Ms. Mailander stated that election season is upon us and election signs or any other signs may not be placed in the planting strip between the curb and sidewalk or on any public property.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the General Election will be primarily vote by mail.  Voters may mail back their ballots to the County via U.S. Mail or they may put it in the ballot box outside of the Village Hall lobby, or may bring it to their polling location.  You can also vote by provisional paper ballot at the polling location.  There will be ADA voting machines available in the polling locations, but they would only be used for those unable to mark the mail in ballots.

 

Resident Volunteers – Ms. Mailander stated that the Village Council is seeking resident volunteers to serve on Boards and Committees.  These include the Planning Board, Zoning Board of Adjustment, Central Business District Advisory Committee, Ridgewood Community Center Advisory Board, Ridgewood Arts Council, Shade Tree Commission, Green Ridgewood, Ridgewood Green Team, and the Open Space Committee.  The deadline to apply is September 8th.  Please submit the Citizen Volunteer Leadership Form, which is found on the website under Forms, page 2, it says Village Clerk, and then you will see the form.  Also, submit a resume or biography of your accomplishments or what you have done in life and a cover letter indicating which Boards you would like to serve on. 

 

Cancellations of Events – Ms. Mailander stated that due to COVID-19, there are various cancellations of events.  The Chamber of Commerce Car Show, scheduled for 9/11, has been canceled, as has Coffee with the Council which was scheduled for 9/12, and then the Parks and Recreation Street Fair was also canceled which was scheduled for 9/20.

 

Chamber of Commerce – Ms. Mailander stated that the Chamber of Commerce will host their Sidewalk Sale Days inside and out on October 1st, 2nd, and 3rd.

 

Household Hazardous Waste Collection – Ms. Mailander stated that the Bergen County Utilities Authority will be holding their Household Hazardous Waste collection on September 12th from 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. at Bergen County Campgaw Reservation in Mahwah. 

 

Upcoming Village Council Meetings – Ms. Mailander stated that the upcoming Village Council meetings are all televised live and are on Zoom.  September 9th is the Village Council Public Meeting, September 23rd is the Village Council Public Work Session, and October 7th is a Village Council Public Work Session.

 

Social Security Administration – Ms. Mailander stated that on behalf of the Social Security Administration, during the Coronavirus Pandemic, they continue to provide help to anyone who may need social security help.  You can apply for disability, Medicare benefits, check the status of an application or appeal, request a replacement social security card, print a benefit verification letter, and much more services are provided online.  They know that many people want to converse with someone, so they do have phone help.  There will be information about this posted on the Village website

 

  1. COUNCIL REPORTS

 

Chamber of Commerce – Councilwoman Perron stated that the next meeting is September 9th, although work has been getting done over the past month, especially with respect to the pedestrian mall.

 

Green Ridgewood – Councilwoman Perron stated that Green Ridgewood will meet on Thursday at 7:00 P.M. and it is open to the public.

 

Open Space – Councilwoman Perron stated that Open Space met on August 20th and Rob Kearny who is an employee of the Ridgewood Water Utility presented.  He is going for a Graduate Degree in GIS Mapping, so it was really interesting how you map natural resources.  He is urging people to help him draft an Environmental Resources Inventory for the town, and she signed up to do the Dunham Trail.  They are looking for more volunteers to help with that endeavor, which overlaps with his membership in Green Ridgewood.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if people interested in participating in the Inventory could email Councilwoman Perron directly.  Councilwoman Perron stated yes, adding that her email is pperron@ridgewoodnj.net.

 

Central Business District Advisory Committee – Councilwoman Perron stated that the CBD Advisory Committee is really trying to help the downtown businesses thrive during this difficult time.  The Pilot Program for “Grab and Go” parking spaces is up and running and they are all really excited about that.  There are ten spaces throughout town on the North/South streets.  Those are free, 15-minute parking spaces for people who are either picking up contactless delivery from a restaurant or they can run a very quick errand in that time.  She encouraged people to look for those signs and use those spots.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that they are also considering a Visitors Bureau for the Central Business District in the form of a website, so that people from Franklin Lakes or Glen Rock can see what is going on in Ridgewood.  They are continuing to work on handouts and literature for potential tenants in the multi-family housing complexes, to again provide coupons to businesses downtown, invite them to look around the Village and see what’s attractive, and if they want to move here.

 

Planning Board – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that the Planning Board met last night and reviewed the final draft of the first section of the Master Plan – Our Village, Our Future.  It was a huge step in the right direction for the Master Plan.  There was going to be a Hopper Ridge Condominium Association application but it was moved to October 6th.

 

Citizen Safety Advisory Committee – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that they will be meeting on September 17th, and they hopefully will be meeting in person but that will be announced in the future.

 

Welcome Back, Ridgewood – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she hoped everyone was able to take advantage of the concerts on Saturdays and Sundays at Van Neste downtown as they have been fabulous.

 

Green Team – Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that tomorrow at 7:30 P.M. the Green Team will meet via Zoom.

 

Kasschau Shell – Mayor Knudsen pointed out that the Kasschau Shell ended their season and she gave a great shoutout to the Kasschau Shell Committee, Parks and Recreation, and especially Gail McCarthy for her leadership this fabulous season and all of that hard work, energy, and effort are greatly appreciated.

 

  1. DISCUSSION

             

  1. Ridgewood Water

 

  1. Award Contract – Roof Repairs to Various Ridgewood Water Facilities

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is for two of the facilities.  Three quotes were obtained.  This is the third year of continuing these improvements.  There were eleven roof structures improved in 2018, eight were improved in 2019, and two are scheduled for this year.  American Construction Chimney and Roofing Specialist of Cliffside Park had the lowest quote of $25,800.  So, the recommendation is to award it to this company and the funding is established in the Water Utility capital budget.

 

  1. Award Professional Services Contract – Preliminary Design Services for PFAS Treatment & Associated Projects

 

Ms. Mailander stated that in June of this year, Mott MacDonald, our consultant, completed the PFAS Planning and Treatment Study.  The Study mapped out a master plan of alternatives to reconfigure some of the treatment systems to eliminate concentrations of PFAS.  The primary focus of the plan is to centralize treatment for efficiency and to take advantage of sites that have more space for the required treatment equipment.  Ridgewood Water would like to proceed with the preliminary design and four of the thirteen proposed treatment plans.  So far, treatment has been installed and is operational at the Carr Treatment Plant.  Design evaluations are underway for the Marr Ravine, Irving/Linwood, Upgraded Carr, and Twinney Plants.  All of these plants serve the largest pressure zone for the system which is a low pressure zone.  The focus for the next preliminary design is to design treatment plants in other operational zones, such as the intermediate and high zones, and one other geographical location in the low.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that in addition to the preliminary design services, Mott MacDonald with assist with the treatment plant at Carr, evaluate all of the raw water pipeline that are required for the new system buildout, and participate in the rate making analysis with our hired rate professional and attend meetings with NJDEP to lay out the compliance schedule for meeting the new PFAS regulations.  Mott MacDonald was previously Hatch Mott MacDonald, and so they have been involved with numerous projects with Ridgewood Water for decades.  Based on their past project experience and working knowledge of our system, they will be best suited to perform this professional engineering service.  The recommendation is to award it to Mott MacDonald of Iselin in an amount not to exceed $277,600.  Funding for this is in the Water capital budget.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if these were the types of costs that the Village is asking for reimbursement in the pending litigation.  Mr. Calbi stated that yes, they were.

 

  1. Award Contract – Replacement of Water Mains

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is on Jefferson Street and Salem Lane.  Bids were received yesterday, and there were 22 plan holders eligible to bid and they received 15 bids.  They range from a low of $814,290 to a high of $1,821,750.  The low bid received was from On Cue Technologies of Oradell.  They submitted a complete bid package and all necessary information, and they have also successfully worked for the Village in the past.  This will be funded from the Ridgewood Water capital budget.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked with a spread of $1 million between bids, if are we missing something, and could they come back with change orders later on in the project.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is a huge spread, and the low bidder did put a number of items where they bid a minimal amount of $1, which are the items that were in the bid that they may or may not use.  They are taking a gamble that they will not use them.  Mr. Rutishauser knows that the contractor is very eager to start work, and the high bidder has plenty of work and put out a what is it worth to me number, which is why they were so high.  He added that the second bidder was around $830,000.

 

  1. Award Professional Services Contract – Risk Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan Updates

 

Ms. Mailander stated that on August 28th, proposals for the Professional Services for the Risk and Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan Updates were received.  Mott MacDonald of Iselin provided the lowest quote in an amount not to exceed $37,750.  Funding for this project is in the Ridgewood Water operating budget.  This is required under the America’s Water Infrastructure Act.  They have done the Emergency Response Plan and it has been updated periodically and it is time to update it again.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that this really gives her reassurance to see that Ridgewood Water is getting this design for risk assessment and an emergency response plan.  She had been wondering about this with regard to climate change.  She didn’t realize that the law had changed in 2018 such that the Water Utility had security measures for physical breaches and for cyber-attacks.  She was wondering what is it with resiliency to climate change and this answers her question.  She is glad this planning is happening.

 

  1. Parking

 

  1. Discuss Parking on Colonial Road

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that there has been ongoing issues on Colonial Road, specific to one resident having some difficulties backing out of her driveway, and because of the narrowness of the road and configuration of the limited time parking on the South side of the road versus the no parking on the North side of the road.  This particular resident has a driveway that is on a steep hill and coupled with the narrow roadway, when she backs out if someone is parked immediately on the opposite side of her driveway, she often runs into problems.  When Mayor Knudsen visited the location and had the opportunity to speak to the resident, it occurred to her that a number of years ago she recalled another resident who backed out of her driveway similarly situated and hit a tree.  When they look at the homes along the north side of the road, about six of them are high on the hill.  Their driveways are rather narrow and when they are backing out, it is difficult to maneuver.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that upon visiting the site, it occurred to her that one option might be to simply flip the no parking on the north side to the south side and the timed parking from the south side to the north side.  She added that it might be prudent to have the Police Department look into that and have Mr. Rutishauser possibly send letters to all of the residents to see if that is a solution they would be willing to work with.  It would be at least something that begins some work towards a solution there.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that if this was the same road she was thinking about, several years ago there was a fatality with a car backing out.  Mayor Knudsen stated that was a different road.  She added that there are six homes on a hill and they have narrow driveways with concrete retaining walls which make it uncomfortable to back up their driveways and pull out straight.  Flipping the parked cars along the street in that section might offer a simple solution to their struggles, and in particular this one resident.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that she didn’t know if Mr. Rutishauser or Sergeant Chuck had looked at this location before.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that he has looked at the location and has spoken to a number of residents in confidence, and they are not particularly fond of this one resident who is making this request.  They have had some vandalism of Village property on that street, consisting of someone painting their own curb yellow which required the Village to spend a considerable amount of effort with the Traffic, Signal, and Water Pollution crew to scrub the yellow paint off the curb.  There is a Police report with a certain resident threating to relocate No Parking signs for her convenience, so the history on this is kind of murky.  Mayor Knudsen stated to that point, she and Mr. Rutishauser have had this conversation, and it really speaks to whether or not the other folks would at least be receptive to just making this flip if it helps and resolves a neighborhood issue.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they could send out the survey letters, and he would talk to Ms. Mailander and Ms. Jackson about preserving the confidentiality of the replies with regards to OPRA.

 

Sergeant Chuck stated that the Police Department would definitely suggest that they do the entire roadway as it would get too confusing to have many different sections.  Ms. Mailander agreed.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she thinks CSAC hasn’t seen this yet and the resident that sent everyone an email, emailed back and forth, and the recommendation that Councilwoman Walsh had given her was to first meet with CSAC and talk about the problem there.  In the past, Colonial Road came up when Stevens Field was finished and that’s why there was this change in parking back then because there were so many people parking on Colonial Road because of Stevens Field.  She added that she thinks they have to bring that into the conversation because she knows that was one of the challenges a few years back.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that Stevens Field has been out of service for at least the last month and a half, so that has reduced the parking demand.  When he has been on the street, there are cars parked there.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that her thought is that she doesn’t necessarily think it’s a CSAC issue, per say, because it is just one of those things that it doesn’t impact the decisions that were made as a result of Stevens Field.  It maintains the same parking configurations and is merely flipping it.  It is likely because of COVID-19 and people having cars home may be part of the issue, but there was one accident that had some significant damage.  They should first establish if the residents are open to this and if there is going to be some pushback, then at least there is a starting point.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she thinks the benefit of CSAC is that you bring the residents together and they can have a conversation, as opposed to here are the results of a survey take it or leave it.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that the survey would take into consideration everyone on the block, and she is sure that not everybody is going to come to a CSAC meeting or speak, and they may only be the three or four people that want it the most or don’t want it the most.  Mayor Knudsen suggested that maybe they send out the resident survey and ask them for an email address.  Then if there is a desire to have a conversation at least they have those email addresses and before any final decision is made, they can email everyone and invite them to the CSAC meeting and this would just be a preliminary step. 

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon asked if they could put the date for the next CSAC meeting in the survey letter they send out, so if somebody gets the letter they know this is a topic of discussion and if they are interested they could come to the next CSAC meeting.  Councilwoman Walsh and Mayor Knudsen agreed.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that it was September 17th, but they don’t know where it is yet.  Ms. Mailander stated that they should know by next week.

 

  1. Budget

 

  1. Quarterly Financial Statements

 

Robert Rooney, Chief Financial Officer, stated that he provided the Village Council with revenue and expense reports through June 30th for the Current Fund, Water Fund, and Parking Utility Fund.  Tax collection through three quarters are slightly above what they did last year, which is very promising.  On sheet one of the revenues, he put asterisks by those revenues that will be in jeopardy this year.  The significant ones are municipal court, the recreation fees and permits, and uniform construction code, because of COVID those will be challenged this year and hopefully they can come close to what they anticipate.  Some of the other challenges are the timing of billing.  Overall, the revenues of the General Fund are about 46% of what they anticipate which is good news under the circumstances.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that on the appropriations side, some of the COVID expenses are recorded in the specific line items where they have been incurred, such as Signal, Building Maintenance, and then there is a catchall where they are holding expenses for COVID that have not hit these appropriations.  Those are the ones they are going to have to take a look at as they get closer to the end of the year to determine how they are going to fund those to move forward.  They have submitted requests to FEMA and to CARES for reimbursement for those expenses the Village has incurred related to COVID.  This would include overtime for the Police Department and any other Departments, so they are waiting to hear back on that.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked for those line items that aren’t timing, when would we be able to realize what the potential loss would be for that total dollar amount.  Mr. Rooney stated that probably by the end of September he would be in a better position to let them now if that is going to be in jeopardy.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that the Water Department has received 43% of their anticipated revenues, but Rich Calbi states in their conversations that July was a banner month.  There were a lot of billings because of the heat and the use of water.  We are past what he would call the hot part of the year where they have to be concerned about the purchase and usage of water.  Under appropriations for water, we have spent about 41% of what we have budgeted and they do have some capital outlay funds that are projects that are ongoing and haven’t kicked in full stream yet because of COVID.  He anticipates they are going to be ratcheting up by the end of the year.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that regarding Parking Utility Fund, they are at 31% as of June 30th.  They have suspended parking meter enforcement, so that is down, in addition to interest on investments interest rates dropped drastically as a result of COVID.  Through August, parking meter revenue has been up roughly to about 33%.  The key is commuters going back to the city, businesses start to get back in action, so we are going to keep an eye on this one.  For appropriations, they are about 38% for what they budgeted and probably have about $100,000 that they can cancel by the end of the year for other expenses that they may not have a use, for so that will temper the problem.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that on Monday, the State passed a bill, A3971, which allows the municipalities and counties and authorities to issue short term or long term, five years to ten years, of debt to compensate for the shortage of revenues and any COVID expenses that they have incurred, after reimbursement from FEMA or CARES.  Local Government will be coming out probably by the end of next week with some guidance and regulations as to how to proceed with this.  This will assist in preventing deficits in these funds that will have to be raised in future years and levelling the cost of these out.  Under circumstances like this, you can issue a special emergency which is similar to what they do for the Master Plan which allows the cost to be spread over five years.  Under this bill you would be given one year free without any interest or appropriation to put in for next year and then it’s five years after that.  They are trying to help balance these shortfalls to make sure that this doesn’t impact taxes drastically next year.  Mr. Rooney stated that hopefully by the end of September they will have all the guidance they need and he will be able to present the Village Council with a plan with his recommendation as to how to move forward and they can mitigate these issues that they are faced with right now.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that it looked like the Parking Utility was going to be in the deficit, but they could issue the bonds and then spread it out so they wouldn’t then have to cover the deficit as it has been done in the past through taxation.  Mr. Rooney stated that was correct, and under this scenario this bill would also apply to any utility.  So, if they anticipate a shortfall in these revenues which are COVID related, they will be able to issue financing to cover that so it will not impact the tax rate next year.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if the numbers meant they were anticipating an $800,000 loss or was her math off.  Councilwoman Walsh stated on the Parking Utility Fund, they should get at least 70% of the revenues.  Mr. Rooney stated no, up through August they are about 33% of what they anticipate for parking.  As far as any deficit, that remains to be seen as to what he is going to get in through September.  Right now, he is looking at a potential deficit.  There has to be an increase in volume to be able to move forward, but there is a vehicle that they can put in place moving forward so that it will not impact the General Fund.

 

  1. Declare Surplus – Abandoned Vehicle – Signal Division

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is a 2007 Nissan Xterra that was seized by the Police Department.  They have obtained a New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission Certificate of Title for this abandoned vehicle.  The request is to declare it surplus so that it can be auctioned.  Councilwoman Perron asked when the vehicle was seized.  Sergeant Chuck stated 2014.  Councilwoman Perron asked when it was forfeited.  Sergeant Chuck stated about two months ago, it was a long court process and after that the defendant passed away.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked what the value of it was.  Sergeant Chuck stated almost nothing, and actually there is some sort of trigger on it so they can’t start the car.  Mayor Knudsen stated that it is probably in really bad shape from sitting all these years.  Sergeant Chuck stated that it probably needs another coat of paint and definitely some vacuuming inside.

 

  1. Award Contract – 2021 Ford Escape – Parking Enforcement

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they have had only one vehicle for the PEO’s for over a year, and sometimes there are multiple tasks that they have to accomplish and it requires more than one car.  There are also days when the one car that they have is in service and therefor it is out of service.  They are also trying to move towards the License Plate Reader system of enforcement, so therefore they will need a second car for that, as well.  This would be from Mahwah Ford which was the lowest bidder of three quotes at a cost of $29,000.  They are also requesting to add the same warning lights as the current car which is $2,500 from Regional Communications in Paramus, and striping from American Graphics in Fair Lawn which costs $2,500.  There are already standing contracts for Regional Communications and American Graphics, so the total cost of the vehicle would be $34,000.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked why is it that they never look at the more utility type vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they did a trial with an electric model last summer.  They ran into two problems.  When it rained they weren’t getting much rain protection and the equipment that the PEO’s were using wasn’t able to recharge in that vehicle.  Also, a couple of their responsibilities took them over the highway and roadways that are over 25 mph.  The Cushman’s are low speed vehicles only, so there are a few places where they can’t travel with that vehicle.  Mayor Knudsen asked what the cost is for one of those vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that the Cushman was about $18,000.  They also looked at two door Smart cars, which are more expensive.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked about other electric vehicles or hybrid vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they didn’t look that deeply into it as the fuel economy on this Escape is pretty good.  They hybrids are normally a little more expensive to purchase, and the problem they ran into this year is that most State contracts expired, so they are pretty much just buying what is out there and its driving the costs up a little more.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked about the license plate reader, and if there was a specific setup for it, or could they use it in a sedan as opposed to an SUV.  Sergeant Chuck stated that the difference between the sedan and the SUV was $1,100, and then they lose 4 wheel drive capabilities.  Also, the set up takes a little more space inside the car and the sedan is a little tighter, so it may have been more uncomfortable for the driver.  They don’t want to install a $20,000 license plate system in a car that they would be getting maybe 6 months out of because then they would have to take all that equipment out and put it in another reused car.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked since they were in a deficit with the Parking Utility was it prudent to be buying a new vehicle or should they wait until the Spring.  Mr. Rooney stated that these funds have already been passed in capital through last year’s capital budget so they have been funded already.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if the license plate reader was coming soon, and also if it goes in the front seat or the back seat.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they have it in place already, and it just started last week.  The cameras are outside the car, with two cameras on the roof and two on the back of the car.  The computer system that runs the cameras, one part is in the trunk and then the part that the operator uses is attached to the car, half in the passenger seat.

 

  1. Award Contracts – Tree Plantings in Area D and Various Locations

 

Ms. Mailander stated that there were approximately 12 plan holders eligible to bid and they received 7.  There were 3 bidders that each presented the lowest price for specific trees and the general instructions indicated that they could make partial awards based on the bid results.  Therefore, they are recommending that portions of the tree planting in form of proposal solicitations be awarded to three lowest bidders, described as the lowest bid for those particular trees.  Faircut Services LLC of Little Falls, will supply 44 Yellow Wood and 40 Saw Tooth Oak, for a total of $43,832.  Downes Tree Service of Hawthorne, will supply 33 Persian Iron Wood, 24 Sugar Maple, and 23 Trident Maple, for a total of $42,320. Clarke Moynihan Landscaping and Construction LLC of Andover, will supply 13 Japanese Tree, Lilac, Maple Amoricaya, and Swamp Tooth Oak, for a total of $23,570.  The grand total of the award is $109,722 for 218 trees to be planted in the Village.  Funding for this work is in a capital ordinance.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if all of those trees are native.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they were all trees that were recommended for the Village.  Declan Madden, the Village Arborist was intimately involved in the selecting species that they put into the bid documents.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked about the species, because she looked up a couple of them and she doesn’t know for sure but it looks like some of the branches are going to be low and that would obviously be a problem.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that there were two type of species they were looking at.  They were looking for trees that are suitable for under utility wire locations, and trees for locations that don’t have any utility wires that would compromise them as they grow.  Low growing trees would go under areas with utility wires.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that if they are under utility wires, they are going to be in areas where trucks are driving.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they are trying to talk to people to plant the trees not between the curb and the sidewalk in the strip, but behind the sidewalk on the property to remove them further from the travel lane where their growth could be impeded.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked if they could tell people where the trees need to be planted, or only suggest.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the Parks Department works with the people both on the species and where it gets planted.  They also have to look at a mark out as it is ill advised to plant a tree right on top of somebody’s sanitary sewer, water service, or gas service because they may be struck during the digging.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if this was an effort to move planting the trees out of the grass strip, and do they have the ability to make that as a requirement.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the Parks Department talks to the residents and tries to convince them to plant on the inside of the sidewalk away from the parkway strip, particularly if it is very narrow.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked what they would do if someone said they didn’t want it on their part of the grass.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that was up to the arborist, if he and the homeowner cant come to an agreement then maybe they will move onto the next location.  This is in Area D, and if they get all these trees planted great, but if not everybody wants a tree they will move onto other sections.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that he would like to make a request that the arborist’s time is freed up while this planting is going on because they have had issues in the past where people were improperly planting trees or just tossing them in the ground.  Seeing that this is an investment with costs of $500 per tree, he would hate to see these dying because they weren’t being planted correctly.  He would like to see the arborist out there supervising these plantings.  Councilwoman Perron asked what the maintenance is on these trees.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that he thinks the Parks Department has a flyer that they give the homeowners that discusses the maintenance and care of the trees.  Councilwoman Perron asked if the homeowners are given gator bags and stakes to help the trees stay straight up.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the trees are staked and he believes they are supplied with a gator bag; however, the resident is asked to fill the gator bag.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked since there is only watering two days a week, is there any kind of exception if they are getting a tree and allowed to water more often.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the gator bags are there and can be filled with a hose any time and that is not a restricted item under the stage two requirements.  For an exemption to the irrigation restrictions, they would have to contact the Water Company and present their case.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked if these plantings were for this Fall.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is intended for this Fall.  That’s why if the Council is in favor of what is presented, and it is approved next week, he will start issuing the contracts right away.  Each of the three vendors will be lined up to get their trees ordered and then get ready to plant them once they’re in a dormant state.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if the Village ordinance states that if you have a new tree planted you are permitted to water it.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that you are always permitted to hand water.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated not between the hours of 10:00 A.M. and 6:00 P.M., which a lot of people don’t know.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that they could pull a hose out to it and water for a half hour once a week and that should be enough.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the watering instructions are on the flyer the resident will get when the tree is planted.  Councilwoman Perron asked that when this comes up next week, can they be reminded where Area D is.  Ms. Mailander stated that over the last three years they have completed Areas A, B, and C.

 

  1. Award Change Order – Renovation and Upgrades – Graydon Pool

 

Ms. Mailander stated that Tri-Plex Industries of South Amboy successfully performed the renovation and upgrades of the restrooms at Graydon Pool.  Their workmanship was satisfactory and they asked Tri-Plex to provide a quote for a number of items that were not in the original bid documents.  The attached change order request has been approved by the architects Connolly and Hickey.  The Change Order Number 2 to Tri-Plex Industries would be for $5,372.88.  There is sufficient funding in a capital account.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked when they were figuring this original project, why stainless steel ADA complaint grab bars, or stainless steel tamper resistant toilet paper dispensers weren’t in the plan as it seems like those are things would have to put in by an architect to be up to code.  Ms. Mailander stated that she could go to Connolly and Hickey and ask why those things weren’t included.

 

  1. Additional Award – Disposal of Ground Yard Waste

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they previously awarded a contract to B and B of West Milford for $17.00 per cubic yard for disposal of yard waste.  Nature’s Choice was $20.00 per cubic yard for disposal of grass clippings.  An additional award to B and B in the amount of $30,000 for yard waste removal is now needed.  The previous award was in the amount of $50,000.  The reason the additional yard waste was generated and needed to be disposed was due to Tropical Storm Isaias.  The good news is the expenditure for disposal of grass clippings is significantly less than what was anticipated.  The Village has spent approximately $4,950 out of a budget of $50,000, so they can actually put that money towards the disposal of yard waste.  The Village is prohibited from disposing of its yard waste materials in our leaf compost facility by our permit from the NJDEP.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she was curious why the grass clippings was so far off, and suggested it was because of less rain this year.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it depends on the growing season how much the trucks collect off the street, and it depends what residents landscapers take with them or whether they leave it at the curb.  Sometimes the loads are not always pure grass and then B and B has accepted them, and they are trying to direct materials to B and B because there is a $3 difference.

 

  1. Additional Award – Project Closeout Services – Hudson Street Garage

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has been dealing with the contaminated soils encountered during the excavations for footings for the garage and the structural soil for the Hudson Street tree planting with the assistance of First Environment.  First Environment has been providing Licensed Site Remediation Professional (LSRP) and material removal services for the garage.  They gave a proposal and an award was made in the amount of $13,600.  Since then, additional effort has been needed primarily with the structural soil that was installed for the shade trees along Hudson Street estimating that it will be another $11,800 to close out the environmental items for the garage site.  Mr. Rutishauser is recommending an award of $15,000 with this final closeout change order.  Money is available in that project construction account.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if this was for documentation of the close out as this seems like a lot for that, or is it actual substantive changes.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is substantial.  One of the things they have to do is a deed notice because there is residual contamination in place, and the LSRP also has to satisfactorily demonstrate to the DEP that the Village has put a satisfactory barrier between any residual contaminated material and the public as an institutional barrier, and for the garage that is the concrete floor.  Councilwoman Perron asked if they were paying for the professional services of the LSRP to get the final sign off from NJDEP.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that was correct.

 

  1. Award Cooperative Purchasing Contract – Compressor Breathing Air Filling System – Fire Department

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they were going to discuss this previously but it was removed from the agenda because they didn’t have a funding source.  A general capital ordinance was introduced which included the compressor to fill the bottles, for $29,990 under NPP.GOV Contract, which is a cooperative purchasing contract.  They will pay for it from the Operating Budget until the Capital Account becomes available.  The award is to Air & Gas Technologies of Cliffwood Beach.

 

  1. Policy

 

  1. Discussion of Suspended CBD Ordinances

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that over the past couple of months, Welcome Back to Ridgewood, New Jersey has been meeting and during the course of that time a number of ordinances have been suspended to help facilitate the Pedestrian Plaza to accommodate on-street dining to add balloons and other such things.  She thought it was important to put together a list of all the ordinances that have been suspended as she thinks it should be handled through a resolution by the Village Council.  In the interim, one of the things that came up was the opportunity to bring the west side of West Ridgewood Avenue/Wilsey Square into this and encourage shoppers and diners to go to that side of the train tracks, and conversely to the east side of the pedestrian plaza.  One of the suggestions was to add lights to the top of the buildings along Wilsey.  The building owner has ordered lights and they would test them on one building and then they would continue to do the entire run of Wilsey and continue onto West Ridgewood Avenue.  Mayor Knudsen stated that if the Village Council is in favor of suspending ordinances that would be required in order to keep those lights there.  

 

Mayor Knudsen referred to the Village Code Chapters, and added that the Planning Board took a look at this last night and determined that it was a positive impact and something worthwhile looking at and allowing to happen.  She asked if the Village Council was willing to do a resolution next week, and in the interim if they do the lights tomorrow night as a test run, they would allow them to leave those up until the resolution has passed.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if it was a string of lights.  Mayor Knudsen stated that they are string lights that are going to be a warm yellow light to give a glow over on Wilsey.  There is some signage that would appear as you are walking into the tunnel encouraging folks to visit the West side and way finder stickers to put on the ground.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she has those lights on her back deck and they are very nice.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that she didn’t circulate the letter from the Planning Board, but she read the contents of the letter to the Village Council.  It is really a review and trying to give some attention to that other side of the railroad tracks.  If everybody is agreeable and they are going to do that, then they would allow the building owner to keep the lights up.  Over Zoom Councilwoman Reynolds showed some documents from the Planning Board to the Village Council.  Councilwoman Walsh asked if each property owner does their own.  Mayor Knudsen stated that she thinks they are going to work together to accomplish this so it all appears as a seamless effort.  Councilwoman Perron stated that she had been going to the Subcommittee meetings twice a week for this, and basically it is two landlords for all of those shops and one of them also owns the property where Smoked is located, which would look great with some lights.  Mayor Knudsen stated that the Planning Board recommended expanding on this along Garber and West Ridgewood Avenue, as well.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that the important piece is that they are open and agreeable to suspending that ordinance temporarily and then looking at whether or not down the road there is an ability to rethink that ordinance entirely.  The Village Council was agreeable to that.  Mayor Knudsen stated that they would have a list of the other ordinances compiled by next week.  They did a pilot of expanding Steel Wheel and S. Egidio into the parking spaces temporarily to allow them to participate in the pedestrian plaza, but the thought was to allow them to leave it there as the restaurants increase to 25% capacity.  Felina and Sook also wanted to give it a shot, so two of them have decided they would do a pilot program and it has been successful.  This piece is very temporary and they have worked with the Police Department.

 

  1. Operations

 

  1. Authorize Joining Omnia Partners Cooperative Purchasing Program

 

Ms. Mailander stated that there was a memo from Mr. Rooney stating that they are always trying to reduce costs and provide services to our residents.  The Village has used various Cooperative Purchasing Programs and currently participates in 14 of them.  This allows them to find cost savings and expand on valuable resources.  Omnia Partners Public Sector is another cooperative purchasing program that will add numerous vendors to our database.  It is free for the Village to join.

 

  1. Authorize Online Auction Service – GovDeals – Sourcewell

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has participated in the Cooperative Purchasing through Sourcewell.  GovDeals, Inc. is an authorized auction site through Sourcewell, and the Village has used them in the past.  Municibid was used over the past year as it is now under State Contract.  GovDeals is nationwide and has greater traffic, and there is also more customer service with them.  This is a resolution to authorize the use of GovDeals to auction surplus property when MuniciBid is ineffective, and it is also an additional resource to dispose of Village property so that they get the greatest return for the taxpayer.

 

  1. REVIEW OF SEPTEMBER 13, 2020 PUBLIC MEETING AGENDA

 

Proclamations: Fire Prevention Week; Gold Star Mother’s Day; National Breast Cancer Awareness Week; and Proclaim September National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.

 

There are no ordinances for introduction for Ridgewood Water.

 

There are no ordinances for public hearing for Ridgewood Water.

 

Resolutions for Ridgewood Water include: Award Contract – Roof Repairs to Various Ridgewood Water Facilities; Title 59 Approval – Water Main Replacement – Jefferson Street and Salem Lane; Award Contract – Water Main Replacement – Jefferson Street and Salem Lane; Award Professional Services Contract – Preliminary Design Services for PFAS Treatment and Associated Projects; and Award Professional Services Contract – Risk Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan.

 

There are no ordinances for introduction.

 

Ordinances for public hearing include: Amend Chapter 265 – Vehicles and Traffic – Placement of Stop Signs in Hudson Street Garage; Amend Village Code to Allow Additional Village Employees to Perform General Code Enforcement Duties; Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Allow Accessible Ramps on One-Family and Two-Family Dwellings to be Reviewed by the Site Plan Exemption Committee; Bond Ordinance – General Capital; Bond Ordinance – Supplemental Appropriation for Front End Loader; and Bond Ordinance – Circle Avenue Drainage Improvements.

 

Resolutions include: Award Contract – Purchase of 2021 Ford Escape – Police Department; Award Contract – Additional Award – Disposal of Yard Waste; Award Contract – Hudson Street Lots – Additional Environmental Technical Support for Project Closeout; Award Contract – Compressor Breathing Air Filling System; Title 59 Approval – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Contract Under Sourcewell Cooperative Purchasing Program – On-line Auction Services for Surplus Property; Authorize Change Order – Renovation and Upgrades – Graydon Pool Bathrooms; Authorize Joining Omnia Partners Public Sector Cooperative Purchasing Program; and Declare Property Surplus – Abandoned Vehicle.

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

Boyd Loving, 342 South Irving Street, stated that he is eagerly awaiting the reopening of Graydon Pool this coming Saturday, as it was closed Monday through Friday because of the unavailability of lifeguards.  He thanked the Village Council for pushing to have the pool open this year as it has been absolutely delightful.  There were many communities that did not open their pools this year and he is thankful that the Council made the decision to open ours.  The water quality has been the best he has ever seen, and he wanted to thank the staff that are taking care of the pool.  As far as he knows, there have been no virus outbreaks at the pool and it has been an absolute delight to be over there.

 

Mr. Loving stated that Mr. Rooney talked about revenue which brings to mind that they have the Airbrook space that was vacated and he has heard no discussion during open meetings about what is being done to fill that space as it was a significant revenue loss when that space was vacated.  There was also some talk about parking, and his concerns were they ever going to get back to a demand that meets or exceeds what happened pre-pandemic or do they have too much parking inventory now.  Obviously, they have to wait and see, but there is a possibility that exists that people will not be commuting to the City as much and there may not be a need for all this parking.  Mr. Loving stated that he hopes an evaluation takes place at some point regarding the parking.  Possibly they have too much parking and can turn some of this into a ratable in some fashion.

 

Mr. Loving stated that effective this past week, the Board of Education returned to in-person meetings.  They are not allowing the public to attend the meetings, but they are meeting in-person and taking comments via phone and email.  As they have seen this evening, there are still some glitches with respect to Zoom, and he hopes that the Village Council considers at least them meeting in person someplace so that we are done with those technical glitches.  Schools are back in session, and he thinks it is time that the Village Council starts to meet again in-person.

 

Matthew Lindenberg, 165 Claremont Road, stated that on behalf of the entire One Village One Vote committee of petitioners he wanted to thank their supporters throughout the Village.  They are thrilled that the question of consolidating Ridgewood’s Village Council and Board of Education elections to November will be put to the voters on this Novembers ballot.  They are committed to spending the next two months until election day continuing to educate the community on the benefits, especially the historically significantly higher voter turnout in November.  They believe this ensures better representation on all Board of Education matters and Village Council matters, including the budgeting processes, as well as the ability to save tens of thousands of dollars or more per year.  They know and respect the fact that some members of the community disagree with them and they are happy to continue to engage in fact based discussions on this issue.  He added that it is important to share the facts and the data behind their efforts.  In an effort to do so, they have shared all of their data and sources on their webpage onevillageonevote.com.  Mr. Lindenberg stated that they encourage everyone in the community to vote yes on this important ballot question when they vote this Fall and join them in helping to make this progress.

 

Laurie Weber, 235 South Irving Street, stated that putting a question on the ballot that seeks to remove a voting right on the school budget requires five times the signatures that were stated on the petitions circulated by the One Vote campaign.  She added that every allegation made on the One Vote website, including the ones that Mr. Lindenberg cited in his comments can be factually disputed.  Ridgewood statistics support that our local elections have enjoyed a larger turnout in the Spring than the Board of Education enjoyed in November.  She stated that the school safety issues, and other issues can all be addressed.  What disturbs her about the way that this process has proceeded is that now they are trying to put this directly on the ballot, completely bypassing the opportunity for a public hearing where the Village Council gets to have a reading of this and the community gets to have a vigorous and thorough discussion of this.

 

Ms. Weber stated that this attempt by the One Vote campaign to bypass the laws that exist to protect voter rights, to propagate misinformation, and now to bypass the entire public participation process and move this to a vote is beyond offensive.  She would sincerely hope that the Village Council and the Village Attorney stand up for the rights of the entire community of voters here and not just for five of them who have managed to convince 500 of promises they will not be able to keep.  

 

Lauren Riker, 224 South Irving Street, stated that she would like to echo what Ms. Weber just said and the right to have the vote on the school budget when it’s a meaningful time is important to her and her family.  She has a son that is in the Ridgewood School System and she thinks it is important that she retains that right and she does not think it’s fair that the proper process is being bypassed by going to a court and not having a public hearing regarding this.

 

Deborah Steinbaum, 295 Grandview Circle, stated that she is one of the One Village One Vote petitioners and she appreciates all the spirited discussion about the ballot initiative.  She thinks it is really important for us to sit down with a deep breath and realize the best way for people to have their say in the matter is to put it to a vote.  It is something that people do care deeply about and truly what better way for people to have a full community airing of this topic than by letting them go to the ballot.  November will be the perfect time for us to address this and she appreciates that everyone cares deeply about our community, as does she, and she thinks this is going to be a really productive discussion among people who care about Ridgewood.  She stated that they would encourage everyone to come out and they are more than willing to discuss the facts that they have put on the website, as there is nothing that is alternative or questionable about them, and interpretation may differ.  She thinks it is important that they come to a community determination of them.  

 

Siobhan Crann Winograd, 274 Ivy Place, stated that she thinks at this point everyone should be on the same page that no matter what your vote would be in November there is a public question.  They spent the past 18 months engaging with the community, Board of Education, and the Village Council.  Every time they issue a fact, all of their facts are submitted directly to the Village Council and the Board of Education.  If there is any discrepancy or something that they are promoting, they do feel that including the Village Council as public officials with their messaging would be the perfect opportunity, if there was a mistake, the Council would let them know.  Ms. Winograd stated that there is no doubt there is a question and the best place for a question such as this is on the ballot.  She added that it is important for the people who are listening to this, they are a group of citizens who motivated to do this, but the Village Council could have placed the question there.  Since they have been writing about this for almost two years, and several of their requests have gone unresponded to, they are motivated to do this.

 

Ms. Winograd stated that she thinks at this point, in time to move forward, they should all acknowledge there is going to be a question and how people want to answer it is up to them.  People can vote their will and their way, and all of us should want that.  She said that if they got something wrong, the Village Council gets emails from them every time they issue a fact, and they would welcome an email if they got something wrong, rather than comments from the dais that something is wrong.  They could have made a mistake some way but they feel that their facts are cited, thorough, and vetted.  There is a question and there is no better place to answer it than on the ballot this November.

 

Linda Tarzian, 576 Highland Avenue, stated that she wanted to make a comment in support of maintaining the citizen taxpayer right to vote and the need to adhere to all appropriate protocols and not eliminate them in the face of pressure tactics to remove our civic duty to vote.  She encouraged the Board of Education to disregard this nefarious motion to remove the right to vote and to take seriously the responsibility to us as taxpayers.

 

Anne Loving, 342 South Irving Street, stated that she is calling to say that they have been doing great work in the downtown to help support the businesses and she is very happy that they are moving to the west side and to the businesses over there.  She has concerns about the east end of Ridgewood Avenue as they seem to be quite neglected and she hopes that they will do something in that important area, as well.

 

Ms. Loving stated that regarding One Village One Vote, she is completely opposed to it because it would take away their legal right to vote on the Board of Education budget.  She added that it is really outrageous, possibly hilarious, that they are proposing that we have a vote on denying us our right to vote.  Her opinion on this initiative is not really the main concern here; this group has put forth false information during their petition drive and their lawyer gave false information to the Judge.  This is disgraceful and she sincerely hopes that the Judge’s decision is going to be challenged by our government. 

 

There were no additional comments from the public, and Mayor Knudsen closed public comment.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that she has expressed her concerns repeatedly that the information shared relative to the cost savings by election consolidation the numbers are inaccurate and she will certainly be happy to detail those next week.  She added that a few weeks ago they were told $100,000 and now its tens of thousands of dollars, she thinks it is important to note the savings to the Village taxpayers by maintain those elections is far greater than $100,000 and she will outline that significant savings to not consolidating next week during the Public Meeting.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that she looked at the figures that One Village One Vote has put forward and it comports with what she has seen in our budget figures so far so she hasn’t seen so far that their facts are inaccurate.  Mayor Knudsen stated that she will detail the figures next week, but reiterated that it is a significant savings to Ridgewood taxpayers to maintain the Spring vote on the budget, a long term tax savings to the taxpayers.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked Mr. Rogers about at the beginning of the meeting how he talked about the litigation and is there an opportunity for the Village Council to get a special meeting so that they can talk maybe before the next meeting.  Mr. Rogers stated that the Village Council could schedule a special meeting according to the Open Public Meetings Act and he doesn’t know when they could fit that it.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that because all of this is going on and they have not been able to meet as a Council to even discuss it, she would feel more comfortable if the five Village Councilmembers could get together to discuss it.  Mr. Rogers stated that unfortunately it can’t be done without the Open Public Meetings Act being satisfied, and it would be difficult with the next meeting a week away and the holiday weekend.  Councilwoman Walsh asked if they could set it for Tuesday.  Mr. Rogers stated that they could talk to Ms. Mailander to see if that could be done.  Mayor Knudsen stated that it was a great point and they would see what they could do with that.

 

  1. ADJOURNMENT

 

There being no further business to come before the Village Council, on a motion by Deputy Mayor Sedon, seconded by Councilwoman Walsh, and carried unanimously by voice vote, the Village Council’s Work Session was adjourned at 9:31 P.M.

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________

                                                                                      Susan Knudsen                         

                                                                                                              Mayor                                    

 

 

 

 

______________________________

              Donna M. Jackson

           Deputy Village Clerk

 A REGULAR WORK SESSION OF THE VILLAGE COUNCIL OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD HELD VIA ZOOM, DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, ON SEPTEMBER 2, 2020 AT 7:30 P.M.

 

  1. CALL TO ORDER – OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT – ROLL CALL – FLAG     SALUTE

 

Mayor Knudsen called the meeting to order at 7:36 P.M. and read the Statement of Compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act.  At roll call the following were present: Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen.  Also present were Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk; Donna Jackson, Deputy Village Clerk; and Matthew Rogers, Village Attorney.

 

Mayor Knudsen led those in attendance in the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag as well as in a Moment of Silence to honor the brave men and women serving in our nation’s armed forces, all our first responders, and especially for our Ridgewood Police Officers.

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

There were no comments from the public.

 

  1. VILLAGE CLERK – CERTIFICATION OF PETITION – ONE VILLAGE, ONE VOTE

 

Mr. Rogers stated that it has always been custom and practice for the Village Council not to comment on pending litigation.  A decision came down after 5:00 P.M. today, and he needs time to review it and will talk with all of the members of the Village Council tomorrow with regard to the next steps.

 

  1. MANAGERS REPORT

 

Welcome Back to Ridgewood, New Jersey – Ms. Mailander stated that Welcome Back to Ridgewood includes outdoor dining and free music all day Saturday and Sunday on East Ridgewood Avenue from Broad Street to Walnut Street and the side streets of Oak, Chestnut, and Prospect Streets.  Everything is closed to cars in that area and it creates a pedestrian mall.

 

Hudson Street Garage – Ms. Mailander stated that the first floor is open for business, it is $1.00 per hour to be paid at the kiosk at the Hudson Street entrance and is a three hour limit.

 

Labor Day – On Monday, September 7th, Village Offices will be closed.  Recycling and Sanitation pickup services are suspended and the Recycling Center will also be closed.

 

September 11th Memorial – To honor the memory of the 12 Ridgewood residents lost on 9/11, portraits of each resident are displayed in the Ridgewood Public Library Auditorium for the month of September.  The Library is open seven days a week and offers a place for reflection.

 

                                                                                                                                      

U.S. Census – Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has increased to an 83% response rate, and she asked that residents please fill out the census online or by phone no later than September 30th as we have our goal of a 100% response rate.

 

Rear Yard Garbage Collection – Ms. Mailander stated that rear yard garbage pickup resumed in July, so residents no longer need to bring their garbage cans to the street.

 

Election – Ms. Mailander stated that election season is upon us and election signs or any other signs may not be placed in the planting strip between the curb and sidewalk or on any public property.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the General Election will be primarily vote by mail.  Voters may mail back their ballots to the County via U.S. Mail or they may put it in the ballot box outside of the Village Hall lobby, or may bring it to their polling location.  You can also vote by provisional paper ballot at the polling location.  There will be ADA voting machines available in the polling locations, but they would only be used for those unable to mark the mail in ballots.

 

Resident Volunteers – Ms. Mailander stated that the Village Council is seeking resident volunteers to serve on Boards and Committees.  These include the Planning Board, Zoning Board of Adjustment, Central Business District Advisory Committee, Ridgewood Community Center Advisory Board, Ridgewood Arts Council, Shade Tree Commission, Green Ridgewood, Ridgewood Green Team, and the Open Space Committee.  The deadline to apply is September 8th.  Please submit the Citizen Volunteer Leadership Form, which is found on the website under Forms, page 2, it says Village Clerk, and then you will see the form.  Also, submit a resume or biography of your accomplishments or what you have done in life and a cover letter indicating which Boards you would like to serve on. 

 

Cancellations of Events – Ms. Mailander stated that due to COVID-19, there are various cancellations of events.  The Chamber of Commerce Car Show, scheduled for 9/11, has been canceled, as has Coffee with the Council which was scheduled for 9/12, and then the Parks and Recreation Street Fair was also canceled which was scheduled for 9/20.

 

Chamber of Commerce – Ms. Mailander stated that the Chamber of Commerce will host their Sidewalk Sale Days inside and out on October 1st, 2nd, and 3rd.

 

Household Hazardous Waste Collection – Ms. Mailander stated that the Bergen County Utilities Authority will be holding their Household Hazardous Waste collection on September 12th from 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. at Bergen County Campgaw Reservation in Mahwah. 

 

Upcoming Village Council Meetings – Ms. Mailander stated that the upcoming Village Council meetings are all televised live and are on Zoom.  September 9th is the Village Council Public Meeting, September 23rd is the Village Council Public Work Session, and October 7th is a Village Council Public Work Session.

 

Social Security Administration – Ms. Mailander stated that on behalf of the Social Security Administration, during the Coronavirus Pandemic, they continue to provide help to anyone who may need social security help.  You can apply for disability, Medicare benefits, check the status of an application or appeal, request a replacement social security card, print a benefit verification letter, and much more services are provided online.  They know that many people want to converse with someone, so they do have phone help.  There will be information about this posted on the Village website

 

  1. COUNCIL REPORTS

 

Chamber of Commerce – Councilwoman Perron stated that the next meeting is September 9th, although work has been getting done over the past month, especially with respect to the pedestrian mall.

 

Green Ridgewood – Councilwoman Perron stated that Green Ridgewood will meet on Thursday at 7:00 P.M. and it is open to the public.

 

Open Space – Councilwoman Perron stated that Open Space met on August 20th and Rob Kearny who is an employee of the Ridgewood Water Utility presented.  He is going for a Graduate Degree in GIS Mapping, so it was really interesting how you map natural resources.  He is urging people to help him draft an Environmental Resources Inventory for the town, and she signed up to do the Dunham Trail.  They are looking for more volunteers to help with that endeavor, which overlaps with his membership in Green Ridgewood.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if people interested in participating in the Inventory could email Councilwoman Perron directly.  Councilwoman Perron stated yes, adding that her email is pperron@ridgewoodnj.net.

 

Central Business District Advisory Committee – Councilwoman Perron stated that the CBD Advisory Committee is really trying to help the downtown businesses thrive during this difficult time.  The Pilot Program for “Grab and Go” parking spaces is up and running and they are all really excited about that.  There are ten spaces throughout town on the North/South streets.  Those are free, 15-minute parking spaces for people who are either picking up contactless delivery from a restaurant or they can run a very quick errand in that time.  She encouraged people to look for those signs and use those spots.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that they are also considering a Visitors Bureau for the Central Business District in the form of a website, so that people from Franklin Lakes or Glen Rock can see what is going on in Ridgewood.  They are continuing to work on handouts and literature for potential tenants in the multi-family housing complexes, to again provide coupons to businesses downtown, invite them to look around the Village and see what’s attractive, and if they want to move here.

 

Planning Board – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that the Planning Board met last night and reviewed the final draft of the first section of the Master Plan – Our Village, Our Future.  It was a huge step in the right direction for the Master Plan.  There was going to be a Hopper Ridge Condominium Association application but it was moved to October 6th.

 

Citizen Safety Advisory Committee – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that they will be meeting on September 17th, and they hopefully will be meeting in person but that will be announced in the future.

 

Welcome Back, Ridgewood – Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she hoped everyone was able to take advantage of the concerts on Saturdays and Sundays at Van Neste downtown as they have been fabulous.

 

Green Team – Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that tomorrow at 7:30 P.M. the Green Team will meet via Zoom.

 

Kasschau Shell – Mayor Knudsen pointed out that the Kasschau Shell ended their season and she gave a great shoutout to the Kasschau Shell Committee, Parks and Recreation, and especially Gail McCarthy for her leadership this fabulous season and all of that hard work, energy, and effort are greatly appreciated.

 

  1. DISCUSSION

             

  1. Ridgewood Water

 

  1. Award Contract – Roof Repairs to Various Ridgewood Water Facilities

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is for two of the facilities.  Three quotes were obtained.  This is the third year of continuing these improvements.  There were eleven roof structures improved in 2018, eight were improved in 2019, and two are scheduled for this year.  American Construction Chimney and Roofing Specialist of Cliffside Park had the lowest quote of $25,800.  So, the recommendation is to award it to this company and the funding is established in the Water Utility capital budget.

 

  1. Award Professional Services Contract – Preliminary Design Services for PFAS Treatment & Associated Projects

 

Ms. Mailander stated that in June of this year, Mott MacDonald, our consultant, completed the PFAS Planning and Treatment Study.  The Study mapped out a master plan of alternatives to reconfigure some of the treatment systems to eliminate concentrations of PFAS.  The primary focus of the plan is to centralize treatment for efficiency and to take advantage of sites that have more space for the required treatment equipment.  Ridgewood Water would like to proceed with the preliminary design and four of the thirteen proposed treatment plans.  So far, treatment has been installed and is operational at the Carr Treatment Plant.  Design evaluations are underway for the Marr Ravine, Irving/Linwood, Upgraded Carr, and Twinney Plants.  All of these plants serve the largest pressure zone for the system which is a low pressure zone.  The focus for the next preliminary design is to design treatment plants in other operational zones, such as the intermediate and high zones, and one other geographical location in the low.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that in addition to the preliminary design services, Mott MacDonald with assist with the treatment plant at Carr, evaluate all of the raw water pipeline that are required for the new system buildout, and participate in the rate making analysis with our hired rate professional and attend meetings with NJDEP to lay out the compliance schedule for meeting the new PFAS regulations.  Mott MacDonald was previously Hatch Mott MacDonald, and so they have been involved with numerous projects with Ridgewood Water for decades.  Based on their past project experience and working knowledge of our system, they will be best suited to perform this professional engineering service.  The recommendation is to award it to Mott MacDonald of Iselin in an amount not to exceed $277,600.  Funding for this is in the Water capital budget.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if these were the types of costs that the Village is asking for reimbursement in the pending litigation.  Mr. Calbi stated that yes, they were.

 

  1. Award Contract – Replacement of Water Mains

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is on Jefferson Street and Salem Lane.  Bids were received yesterday, and there were 22 plan holders eligible to bid and they received 15 bids.  They range from a low of $814,290 to a high of $1,821,750.  The low bid received was from On Cue Technologies of Oradell.  They submitted a complete bid package and all necessary information, and they have also successfully worked for the Village in the past.  This will be funded from the Ridgewood Water capital budget.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked with a spread of $1 million between bids, if are we missing something, and could they come back with change orders later on in the project.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is a huge spread, and the low bidder did put a number of items where they bid a minimal amount of $1, which are the items that were in the bid that they may or may not use.  They are taking a gamble that they will not use them.  Mr. Rutishauser knows that the contractor is very eager to start work, and the high bidder has plenty of work and put out a what is it worth to me number, which is why they were so high.  He added that the second bidder was around $830,000.

 

  1. Award Professional Services Contract – Risk Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan Updates

 

Ms. Mailander stated that on August 28th, proposals for the Professional Services for the Risk and Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan Updates were received.  Mott MacDonald of Iselin provided the lowest quote in an amount not to exceed $37,750.  Funding for this project is in the Ridgewood Water operating budget.  This is required under the America’s Water Infrastructure Act.  They have done the Emergency Response Plan and it has been updated periodically and it is time to update it again.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that this really gives her reassurance to see that Ridgewood Water is getting this design for risk assessment and an emergency response plan.  She had been wondering about this with regard to climate change.  She didn’t realize that the law had changed in 2018 such that the Water Utility had security measures for physical breaches and for cyber-attacks.  She was wondering what is it with resiliency to climate change and this answers her question.  She is glad this planning is happening.

 

  1. Parking

 

  1. Discuss Parking on Colonial Road

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that there has been ongoing issues on Colonial Road, specific to one resident having some difficulties backing out of her driveway, and because of the narrowness of the road and configuration of the limited time parking on the South side of the road versus the no parking on the North side of the road.  This particular resident has a driveway that is on a steep hill and coupled with the narrow roadway, when she backs out if someone is parked immediately on the opposite side of her driveway, she often runs into problems.  When Mayor Knudsen visited the location and had the opportunity to speak to the resident, it occurred to her that a number of years ago she recalled another resident who backed out of her driveway similarly situated and hit a tree.  When they look at the homes along the north side of the road, about six of them are high on the hill.  Their driveways are rather narrow and when they are backing out, it is difficult to maneuver.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that upon visiting the site, it occurred to her that one option might be to simply flip the no parking on the north side to the south side and the timed parking from the south side to the north side.  She added that it might be prudent to have the Police Department look into that and have Mr. Rutishauser possibly send letters to all of the residents to see if that is a solution they would be willing to work with.  It would be at least something that begins some work towards a solution there.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that if this was the same road she was thinking about, several years ago there was a fatality with a car backing out.  Mayor Knudsen stated that was a different road.  She added that there are six homes on a hill and they have narrow driveways with concrete retaining walls which make it uncomfortable to back up their driveways and pull out straight.  Flipping the parked cars along the street in that section might offer a simple solution to their struggles, and in particular this one resident.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that she didn’t know if Mr. Rutishauser or Sergeant Chuck had looked at this location before.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that he has looked at the location and has spoken to a number of residents in confidence, and they are not particularly fond of this one resident who is making this request.  They have had some vandalism of Village property on that street, consisting of someone painting their own curb yellow which required the Village to spend a considerable amount of effort with the Traffic, Signal, and Water Pollution crew to scrub the yellow paint off the curb.  There is a Police report with a certain resident threating to relocate No Parking signs for her convenience, so the history on this is kind of murky.  Mayor Knudsen stated to that point, she and Mr. Rutishauser have had this conversation, and it really speaks to whether or not the other folks would at least be receptive to just making this flip if it helps and resolves a neighborhood issue.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they could send out the survey letters, and he would talk to Ms. Mailander and Ms. Jackson about preserving the confidentiality of the replies with regards to OPRA.

 

Sergeant Chuck stated that the Police Department would definitely suggest that they do the entire roadway as it would get too confusing to have many different sections.  Ms. Mailander agreed.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she thinks CSAC hasn’t seen this yet and the resident that sent everyone an email, emailed back and forth, and the recommendation that Councilwoman Walsh had given her was to first meet with CSAC and talk about the problem there.  In the past, Colonial Road came up when Stevens Field was finished and that’s why there was this change in parking back then because there were so many people parking on Colonial Road because of Stevens Field.  She added that she thinks they have to bring that into the conversation because she knows that was one of the challenges a few years back.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that Stevens Field has been out of service for at least the last month and a half, so that has reduced the parking demand.  When he has been on the street, there are cars parked there.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that her thought is that she doesn’t necessarily think it’s a CSAC issue, per say, because it is just one of those things that it doesn’t impact the decisions that were made as a result of Stevens Field.  It maintains the same parking configurations and is merely flipping it.  It is likely because of COVID-19 and people having cars home may be part of the issue, but there was one accident that had some significant damage.  They should first establish if the residents are open to this and if there is going to be some pushback, then at least there is a starting point.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she thinks the benefit of CSAC is that you bring the residents together and they can have a conversation, as opposed to here are the results of a survey take it or leave it.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that the survey would take into consideration everyone on the block, and she is sure that not everybody is going to come to a CSAC meeting or speak, and they may only be the three or four people that want it the most or don’t want it the most.  Mayor Knudsen suggested that maybe they send out the resident survey and ask them for an email address.  Then if there is a desire to have a conversation at least they have those email addresses and before any final decision is made, they can email everyone and invite them to the CSAC meeting and this would just be a preliminary step. 

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon asked if they could put the date for the next CSAC meeting in the survey letter they send out, so if somebody gets the letter they know this is a topic of discussion and if they are interested they could come to the next CSAC meeting.  Councilwoman Walsh and Mayor Knudsen agreed.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that it was September 17th, but they don’t know where it is yet.  Ms. Mailander stated that they should know by next week.

 

  1. Budget

 

  1. Quarterly Financial Statements

 

Robert Rooney, Chief Financial Officer, stated that he provided the Village Council with revenue and expense reports through June 30th for the Current Fund, Water Fund, and Parking Utility Fund.  Tax collection through three quarters are slightly above what they did last year, which is very promising.  On sheet one of the revenues, he put asterisks by those revenues that will be in jeopardy this year.  The significant ones are municipal court, the recreation fees and permits, and uniform construction code, because of COVID those will be challenged this year and hopefully they can come close to what they anticipate.  Some of the other challenges are the timing of billing.  Overall, the revenues of the General Fund are about 46% of what they anticipate which is good news under the circumstances.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that on the appropriations side, some of the COVID expenses are recorded in the specific line items where they have been incurred, such as Signal, Building Maintenance, and then there is a catchall where they are holding expenses for COVID that have not hit these appropriations.  Those are the ones they are going to have to take a look at as they get closer to the end of the year to determine how they are going to fund those to move forward.  They have submitted requests to FEMA and to CARES for reimbursement for those expenses the Village has incurred related to COVID.  This would include overtime for the Police Department and any other Departments, so they are waiting to hear back on that.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked for those line items that aren’t timing, when would we be able to realize what the potential loss would be for that total dollar amount.  Mr. Rooney stated that probably by the end of September he would be in a better position to let them now if that is going to be in jeopardy.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that the Water Department has received 43% of their anticipated revenues, but Rich Calbi states in their conversations that July was a banner month.  There were a lot of billings because of the heat and the use of water.  We are past what he would call the hot part of the year where they have to be concerned about the purchase and usage of water.  Under appropriations for water, we have spent about 41% of what we have budgeted and they do have some capital outlay funds that are projects that are ongoing and haven’t kicked in full stream yet because of COVID.  He anticipates they are going to be ratcheting up by the end of the year.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that regarding Parking Utility Fund, they are at 31% as of June 30th.  They have suspended parking meter enforcement, so that is down, in addition to interest on investments interest rates dropped drastically as a result of COVID.  Through August, parking meter revenue has been up roughly to about 33%.  The key is commuters going back to the city, businesses start to get back in action, so we are going to keep an eye on this one.  For appropriations, they are about 38% for what they budgeted and probably have about $100,000 that they can cancel by the end of the year for other expenses that they may not have a use, for so that will temper the problem.

 

Mr. Rooney stated that on Monday, the State passed a bill, A3971, which allows the municipalities and counties and authorities to issue short term or long term, five years to ten years, of debt to compensate for the shortage of revenues and any COVID expenses that they have incurred, after reimbursement from FEMA or CARES.  Local Government will be coming out probably by the end of next week with some guidance and regulations as to how to proceed with this.  This will assist in preventing deficits in these funds that will have to be raised in future years and levelling the cost of these out.  Under circumstances like this, you can issue a special emergency which is similar to what they do for the Master Plan which allows the cost to be spread over five years.  Under this bill you would be given one year free without any interest or appropriation to put in for next year and then it’s five years after that.  They are trying to help balance these shortfalls to make sure that this doesn’t impact taxes drastically next year.  Mr. Rooney stated that hopefully by the end of September they will have all the guidance they need and he will be able to present the Village Council with a plan with his recommendation as to how to move forward and they can mitigate these issues that they are faced with right now.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that it looked like the Parking Utility was going to be in the deficit, but they could issue the bonds and then spread it out so they wouldn’t then have to cover the deficit as it has been done in the past through taxation.  Mr. Rooney stated that was correct, and under this scenario this bill would also apply to any utility.  So, if they anticipate a shortfall in these revenues which are COVID related, they will be able to issue financing to cover that so it will not impact the tax rate next year.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if the numbers meant they were anticipating an $800,000 loss or was her math off.  Councilwoman Walsh stated on the Parking Utility Fund, they should get at least 70% of the revenues.  Mr. Rooney stated no, up through August they are about 33% of what they anticipate for parking.  As far as any deficit, that remains to be seen as to what he is going to get in through September.  Right now, he is looking at a potential deficit.  There has to be an increase in volume to be able to move forward, but there is a vehicle that they can put in place moving forward so that it will not impact the General Fund.

 

  1. Declare Surplus – Abandoned Vehicle – Signal Division

 

Ms. Mailander stated that this is a 2007 Nissan Xterra that was seized by the Police Department.  They have obtained a New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission Certificate of Title for this abandoned vehicle.  The request is to declare it surplus so that it can be auctioned.  Councilwoman Perron asked when the vehicle was seized.  Sergeant Chuck stated 2014.  Councilwoman Perron asked when it was forfeited.  Sergeant Chuck stated about two months ago, it was a long court process and after that the defendant passed away.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked what the value of it was.  Sergeant Chuck stated almost nothing, and actually there is some sort of trigger on it so they can’t start the car.  Mayor Knudsen stated that it is probably in really bad shape from sitting all these years.  Sergeant Chuck stated that it probably needs another coat of paint and definitely some vacuuming inside.

 

  1. Award Contract – 2021 Ford Escape – Parking Enforcement

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they have had only one vehicle for the PEO’s for over a year, and sometimes there are multiple tasks that they have to accomplish and it requires more than one car.  There are also days when the one car that they have is in service and therefor it is out of service.  They are also trying to move towards the License Plate Reader system of enforcement, so therefore they will need a second car for that, as well.  This would be from Mahwah Ford which was the lowest bidder of three quotes at a cost of $29,000.  They are also requesting to add the same warning lights as the current car which is $2,500 from Regional Communications in Paramus, and striping from American Graphics in Fair Lawn which costs $2,500.  There are already standing contracts for Regional Communications and American Graphics, so the total cost of the vehicle would be $34,000.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked why is it that they never look at the more utility type vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they did a trial with an electric model last summer.  They ran into two problems.  When it rained they weren’t getting much rain protection and the equipment that the PEO’s were using wasn’t able to recharge in that vehicle.  Also, a couple of their responsibilities took them over the highway and roadways that are over 25 mph.  The Cushman’s are low speed vehicles only, so there are a few places where they can’t travel with that vehicle.  Mayor Knudsen asked what the cost is for one of those vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that the Cushman was about $18,000.  They also looked at two door Smart cars, which are more expensive.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked about other electric vehicles or hybrid vehicles.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they didn’t look that deeply into it as the fuel economy on this Escape is pretty good.  They hybrids are normally a little more expensive to purchase, and the problem they ran into this year is that most State contracts expired, so they are pretty much just buying what is out there and its driving the costs up a little more.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked about the license plate reader, and if there was a specific setup for it, or could they use it in a sedan as opposed to an SUV.  Sergeant Chuck stated that the difference between the sedan and the SUV was $1,100, and then they lose 4 wheel drive capabilities.  Also, the set up takes a little more space inside the car and the sedan is a little tighter, so it may have been more uncomfortable for the driver.  They don’t want to install a $20,000 license plate system in a car that they would be getting maybe 6 months out of because then they would have to take all that equipment out and put it in another reused car.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked since they were in a deficit with the Parking Utility was it prudent to be buying a new vehicle or should they wait until the Spring.  Mr. Rooney stated that these funds have already been passed in capital through last year’s capital budget so they have been funded already.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if the license plate reader was coming soon, and also if it goes in the front seat or the back seat.  Sergeant Chuck stated that they have it in place already, and it just started last week.  The cameras are outside the car, with two cameras on the roof and two on the back of the car.  The computer system that runs the cameras, one part is in the trunk and then the part that the operator uses is attached to the car, half in the passenger seat.

 

  1. Award Contracts – Tree Plantings in Area D and Various Locations

 

Ms. Mailander stated that there were approximately 12 plan holders eligible to bid and they received 7.  There were 3 bidders that each presented the lowest price for specific trees and the general instructions indicated that they could make partial awards based on the bid results.  Therefore, they are recommending that portions of the tree planting in form of proposal solicitations be awarded to three lowest bidders, described as the lowest bid for those particular trees.  Faircut Services LLC of Little Falls, will supply 44 Yellow Wood and 40 Saw Tooth Oak, for a total of $43,832.  Downes Tree Service of Hawthorne, will supply 33 Persian Iron Wood, 24 Sugar Maple, and 23 Trident Maple, for a total of $42,320. Clarke Moynihan Landscaping and Construction LLC of Andover, will supply 13 Japanese Tree, Lilac, Maple Amoricaya, and Swamp Tooth Oak, for a total of $23,570.  The grand total of the award is $109,722 for 218 trees to be planted in the Village.  Funding for this work is in a capital ordinance.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if all of those trees are native.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they were all trees that were recommended for the Village.  Declan Madden, the Village Arborist was intimately involved in the selecting species that they put into the bid documents.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked about the species, because she looked up a couple of them and she doesn’t know for sure but it looks like some of the branches are going to be low and that would obviously be a problem.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that there were two type of species they were looking at.  They were looking for trees that are suitable for under utility wire locations, and trees for locations that don’t have any utility wires that would compromise them as they grow.  Low growing trees would go under areas with utility wires.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated that if they are under utility wires, they are going to be in areas where trucks are driving.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that they are trying to talk to people to plant the trees not between the curb and the sidewalk in the strip, but behind the sidewalk on the property to remove them further from the travel lane where their growth could be impeded.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked if they could tell people where the trees need to be planted, or only suggest.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the Parks Department works with the people both on the species and where it gets planted.  They also have to look at a mark out as it is ill advised to plant a tree right on top of somebody’s sanitary sewer, water service, or gas service because they may be struck during the digging.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked if this was an effort to move planting the trees out of the grass strip, and do they have the ability to make that as a requirement.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the Parks Department talks to the residents and tries to convince them to plant on the inside of the sidewalk away from the parkway strip, particularly if it is very narrow.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked what they would do if someone said they didn’t want it on their part of the grass.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that was up to the arborist, if he and the homeowner cant come to an agreement then maybe they will move onto the next location.  This is in Area D, and if they get all these trees planted great, but if not everybody wants a tree they will move onto other sections.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that he would like to make a request that the arborist’s time is freed up while this planting is going on because they have had issues in the past where people were improperly planting trees or just tossing them in the ground.  Seeing that this is an investment with costs of $500 per tree, he would hate to see these dying because they weren’t being planted correctly.  He would like to see the arborist out there supervising these plantings.  Councilwoman Perron asked what the maintenance is on these trees.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that he thinks the Parks Department has a flyer that they give the homeowners that discusses the maintenance and care of the trees.  Councilwoman Perron asked if the homeowners are given gator bags and stakes to help the trees stay straight up.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the trees are staked and he believes they are supplied with a gator bag; however, the resident is asked to fill the gator bag.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds asked since there is only watering two days a week, is there any kind of exception if they are getting a tree and allowed to water more often.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the gator bags are there and can be filled with a hose any time and that is not a restricted item under the stage two requirements.  For an exemption to the irrigation restrictions, they would have to contact the Water Company and present their case.  Councilwoman Reynolds asked if these plantings were for this Fall.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is intended for this Fall.  That’s why if the Council is in favor of what is presented, and it is approved next week, he will start issuing the contracts right away.  Each of the three vendors will be lined up to get their trees ordered and then get ready to plant them once they’re in a dormant state.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if the Village ordinance states that if you have a new tree planted you are permitted to water it.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that you are always permitted to hand water.  Councilwoman Reynolds stated not between the hours of 10:00 A.M. and 6:00 P.M., which a lot of people don’t know.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that they could pull a hose out to it and water for a half hour once a week and that should be enough.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that the watering instructions are on the flyer the resident will get when the tree is planted.  Councilwoman Perron asked that when this comes up next week, can they be reminded where Area D is.  Ms. Mailander stated that over the last three years they have completed Areas A, B, and C.

 

  1. Award Change Order – Renovation and Upgrades – Graydon Pool

 

Ms. Mailander stated that Tri-Plex Industries of South Amboy successfully performed the renovation and upgrades of the restrooms at Graydon Pool.  Their workmanship was satisfactory and they asked Tri-Plex to provide a quote for a number of items that were not in the original bid documents.  The attached change order request has been approved by the architects Connolly and Hickey.  The Change Order Number 2 to Tri-Plex Industries would be for $5,372.88.  There is sufficient funding in a capital account.

 

Mayor Knudsen asked when they were figuring this original project, why stainless steel ADA complaint grab bars, or stainless steel tamper resistant toilet paper dispensers weren’t in the plan as it seems like those are things would have to put in by an architect to be up to code.  Ms. Mailander stated that she could go to Connolly and Hickey and ask why those things weren’t included.

 

  1. Additional Award – Disposal of Ground Yard Waste

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they previously awarded a contract to B and B of West Milford for $17.00 per cubic yard for disposal of yard waste.  Nature’s Choice was $20.00 per cubic yard for disposal of grass clippings.  An additional award to B and B in the amount of $30,000 for yard waste removal is now needed.  The previous award was in the amount of $50,000.  The reason the additional yard waste was generated and needed to be disposed was due to Tropical Storm Isaias.  The good news is the expenditure for disposal of grass clippings is significantly less than what was anticipated.  The Village has spent approximately $4,950 out of a budget of $50,000, so they can actually put that money towards the disposal of yard waste.  The Village is prohibited from disposing of its yard waste materials in our leaf compost facility by our permit from the NJDEP.

 

Councilwoman Reynolds stated that she was curious why the grass clippings was so far off, and suggested it was because of less rain this year.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it depends on the growing season how much the trucks collect off the street, and it depends what residents landscapers take with them or whether they leave it at the curb.  Sometimes the loads are not always pure grass and then B and B has accepted them, and they are trying to direct materials to B and B because there is a $3 difference.

 

  1. Additional Award – Project Closeout Services – Hudson Street Garage

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has been dealing with the contaminated soils encountered during the excavations for footings for the garage and the structural soil for the Hudson Street tree planting with the assistance of First Environment.  First Environment has been providing Licensed Site Remediation Professional (LSRP) and material removal services for the garage.  They gave a proposal and an award was made in the amount of $13,600.  Since then, additional effort has been needed primarily with the structural soil that was installed for the shade trees along Hudson Street estimating that it will be another $11,800 to close out the environmental items for the garage site.  Mr. Rutishauser is recommending an award of $15,000 with this final closeout change order.  Money is available in that project construction account.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if this was for documentation of the close out as this seems like a lot for that, or is it actual substantive changes.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that it is substantial.  One of the things they have to do is a deed notice because there is residual contamination in place, and the LSRP also has to satisfactorily demonstrate to the DEP that the Village has put a satisfactory barrier between any residual contaminated material and the public as an institutional barrier, and for the garage that is the concrete floor.  Councilwoman Perron asked if they were paying for the professional services of the LSRP to get the final sign off from NJDEP.  Mr. Rutishauser stated that was correct.

 

  1. Award Cooperative Purchasing Contract – Compressor Breathing Air Filling System – Fire Department

 

Ms. Mailander stated that they were going to discuss this previously but it was removed from the agenda because they didn’t have a funding source.  A general capital ordinance was introduced which included the compressor to fill the bottles, for $29,990 under NPP.GOV Contract, which is a cooperative purchasing contract.  They will pay for it from the Operating Budget until the Capital Account becomes available.  The award is to Air & Gas Technologies of Cliffwood Beach.

 

  1. Policy

 

  1. Discussion of Suspended CBD Ordinances

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that over the past couple of months, Welcome Back to Ridgewood, New Jersey has been meeting and during the course of that time a number of ordinances have been suspended to help facilitate the Pedestrian Plaza to accommodate on-street dining to add balloons and other such things.  She thought it was important to put together a list of all the ordinances that have been suspended as she thinks it should be handled through a resolution by the Village Council.  In the interim, one of the things that came up was the opportunity to bring the west side of West Ridgewood Avenue/Wilsey Square into this and encourage shoppers and diners to go to that side of the train tracks, and conversely to the east side of the pedestrian plaza.  One of the suggestions was to add lights to the top of the buildings along Wilsey.  The building owner has ordered lights and they would test them on one building and then they would continue to do the entire run of Wilsey and continue onto West Ridgewood Avenue.  Mayor Knudsen stated that if the Village Council is in favor of suspending ordinances that would be required in order to keep those lights there.  

 

Mayor Knudsen referred to the Village Code Chapters, and added that the Planning Board took a look at this last night and determined that it was a positive impact and something worthwhile looking at and allowing to happen.  She asked if the Village Council was willing to do a resolution next week, and in the interim if they do the lights tomorrow night as a test run, they would allow them to leave those up until the resolution has passed.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked if it was a string of lights.  Mayor Knudsen stated that they are string lights that are going to be a warm yellow light to give a glow over on Wilsey.  There is some signage that would appear as you are walking into the tunnel encouraging folks to visit the West side and way finder stickers to put on the ground.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that she has those lights on her back deck and they are very nice.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that she didn’t circulate the letter from the Planning Board, but she read the contents of the letter to the Village Council.  It is really a review and trying to give some attention to that other side of the railroad tracks.  If everybody is agreeable and they are going to do that, then they would allow the building owner to keep the lights up.  Over Zoom Councilwoman Reynolds showed some documents from the Planning Board to the Village Council.  Councilwoman Walsh asked if each property owner does their own.  Mayor Knudsen stated that she thinks they are going to work together to accomplish this so it all appears as a seamless effort.  Councilwoman Perron stated that she had been going to the Subcommittee meetings twice a week for this, and basically it is two landlords for all of those shops and one of them also owns the property where Smoked is located, which would look great with some lights.  Mayor Knudsen stated that the Planning Board recommended expanding on this along Garber and West Ridgewood Avenue, as well.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that the important piece is that they are open and agreeable to suspending that ordinance temporarily and then looking at whether or not down the road there is an ability to rethink that ordinance entirely.  The Village Council was agreeable to that.  Mayor Knudsen stated that they would have a list of the other ordinances compiled by next week.  They did a pilot of expanding Steel Wheel and S. Egidio into the parking spaces temporarily to allow them to participate in the pedestrian plaza, but the thought was to allow them to leave it there as the restaurants increase to 25% capacity.  Felina and Sook also wanted to give it a shot, so two of them have decided they would do a pilot program and it has been successful.  This piece is very temporary and they have worked with the Police Department.

 

  1. Operations

 

  1. Authorize Joining Omnia Partners Cooperative Purchasing Program

 

Ms. Mailander stated that there was a memo from Mr. Rooney stating that they are always trying to reduce costs and provide services to our residents.  The Village has used various Cooperative Purchasing Programs and currently participates in 14 of them.  This allows them to find cost savings and expand on valuable resources.  Omnia Partners Public Sector is another cooperative purchasing program that will add numerous vendors to our database.  It is free for the Village to join.

 

  1. Authorize Online Auction Service – GovDeals – Sourcewell

 

Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has participated in the Cooperative Purchasing through Sourcewell.  GovDeals, Inc. is an authorized auction site through Sourcewell, and the Village has used them in the past.  Municibid was used over the past year as it is now under State Contract.  GovDeals is nationwide and has greater traffic, and there is also more customer service with them.  This is a resolution to authorize the use of GovDeals to auction surplus property when MuniciBid is ineffective, and it is also an additional resource to dispose of Village property so that they get the greatest return for the taxpayer.

 

  1. REVIEW OF SEPTEMBER 13, 2020 PUBLIC MEETING AGENDA

 

Proclamations: Fire Prevention Week; Gold Star Mother’s Day; National Breast Cancer Awareness Week; and Proclaim September National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.

 

There are no ordinances for introduction for Ridgewood Water.

 

There are no ordinances for public hearing for Ridgewood Water.

 

Resolutions for Ridgewood Water include: Award Contract – Roof Repairs to Various Ridgewood Water Facilities; Title 59 Approval – Water Main Replacement – Jefferson Street and Salem Lane; Award Contract – Water Main Replacement – Jefferson Street and Salem Lane; Award Professional Services Contract – Preliminary Design Services for PFAS Treatment and Associated Projects; and Award Professional Services Contract – Risk Resilience Assessment and Emergency Response Plan.

 

There are no ordinances for introduction.

 

Ordinances for public hearing include: Amend Chapter 265 – Vehicles and Traffic – Placement of Stop Signs in Hudson Street Garage; Amend Village Code to Allow Additional Village Employees to Perform General Code Enforcement Duties; Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Allow Accessible Ramps on One-Family and Two-Family Dwellings to be Reviewed by the Site Plan Exemption Committee; Bond Ordinance – General Capital; Bond Ordinance – Supplemental Appropriation for Front End Loader; and Bond Ordinance – Circle Avenue Drainage Improvements.

 

Resolutions include: Award Contract – Purchase of 2021 Ford Escape – Police Department; Award Contract – Additional Award – Disposal of Yard Waste; Award Contract – Hudson Street Lots – Additional Environmental Technical Support for Project Closeout; Award Contract – Compressor Breathing Air Filling System; Title 59 Approval – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Partial Contract – Tree Planting – Area D and Various Locations; Award Contract Under Sourcewell Cooperative Purchasing Program – On-line Auction Services for Surplus Property; Authorize Change Order – Renovation and Upgrades – Graydon Pool Bathrooms; Authorize Joining Omnia Partners Public Sector Cooperative Purchasing Program; and Declare Property Surplus – Abandoned Vehicle.

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

Boyd Loving, 342 South Irving Street, stated that he is eagerly awaiting the reopening of Graydon Pool this coming Saturday, as it was closed Monday through Friday because of the unavailability of lifeguards.  He thanked the Village Council for pushing to have the pool open this year as it has been absolutely delightful.  There were many communities that did not open their pools this year and he is thankful that the Council made the decision to open ours.  The water quality has been the best he has ever seen, and he wanted to thank the staff that are taking care of the pool.  As far as he knows, there have been no virus outbreaks at the pool and it has been an absolute delight to be over there.

 

Mr. Loving stated that Mr. Rooney talked about revenue which brings to mind that they have the Airbrook space that was vacated and he has heard no discussion during open meetings about what is being done to fill that space as it was a significant revenue loss when that space was vacated.  There was also some talk about parking, and his concerns were they ever going to get back to a demand that meets or exceeds what happened pre-pandemic or do they have too much parking inventory now.  Obviously, they have to wait and see, but there is a possibility that exists that people will not be commuting to the City as much and there may not be a need for all this parking.  Mr. Loving stated that he hopes an evaluation takes place at some point regarding the parking.  Possibly they have too much parking and can turn some of this into a ratable in some fashion.

 

Mr. Loving stated that effective this past week, the Board of Education returned to in-person meetings.  They are not allowing the public to attend the meetings, but they are meeting in-person and taking comments via phone and email.  As they have seen this evening, there are still some glitches with respect to Zoom, and he hopes that the Village Council considers at least them meeting in person someplace so that we are done with those technical glitches.  Schools are back in session, and he thinks it is time that the Village Council starts to meet again in-person.

 

Matthew Lindenberg, 165 Claremont Road, stated that on behalf of the entire One Village One Vote committee of petitioners he wanted to thank their supporters throughout the Village.  They are thrilled that the question of consolidating Ridgewood’s Village Council and Board of Education elections to November will be put to the voters on this Novembers ballot.  They are committed to spending the next two months until election day continuing to educate the community on the benefits, especially the historically significantly higher voter turnout in November.  They believe this ensures better representation on all Board of Education matters and Village Council matters, including the budgeting processes, as well as the ability to save tens of thousands of dollars or more per year.  They know and respect the fact that some members of the community disagree with them and they are happy to continue to engage in fact based discussions on this issue.  He added that it is important to share the facts and the data behind their efforts.  In an effort to do so, they have shared all of their data and sources on their webpage onevillageonevote.com.  Mr. Lindenberg stated that they encourage everyone in the community to vote yes on this important ballot question when they vote this Fall and join them in helping to make this progress.

 

Laurie Weber, 235 South Irving Street, stated that putting a question on the ballot that seeks to remove a voting right on the school budget requires five times the signatures that were stated on the petitions circulated by the One Vote campaign.  She added that every allegation made on the One Vote website, including the ones that Mr. Lindenberg cited in his comments can be factually disputed.  Ridgewood statistics support that our local elections have enjoyed a larger turnout in the Spring than the Board of Education enjoyed in November.  She stated that the school safety issues, and other issues can all be addressed.  What disturbs her about the way that this process has proceeded is that now they are trying to put this directly on the ballot, completely bypassing the opportunity for a public hearing where the Village Council gets to have a reading of this and the community gets to have a vigorous and thorough discussion of this.

 

Ms. Weber stated that this attempt by the One Vote campaign to bypass the laws that exist to protect voter rights, to propagate misinformation, and now to bypass the entire public participation process and move this to a vote is beyond offensive.  She would sincerely hope that the Village Council and the Village Attorney stand up for the rights of the entire community of voters here and not just for five of them who have managed to convince 500 of promises they will not be able to keep.  

 

Lauren Riker, 224 South Irving Street, stated that she would like to echo what Ms. Weber just said and the right to have the vote on the school budget when it’s a meaningful time is important to her and her family.  She has a son that is in the Ridgewood School System and she thinks it is important that she retains that right and she does not think it’s fair that the proper process is being bypassed by going to a court and not having a public hearing regarding this.

 

Deborah Steinbaum, 295 Grandview Circle, stated that she is one of the One Village One Vote petitioners and she appreciates all the spirited discussion about the ballot initiative.  She thinks it is really important for us to sit down with a deep breath and realize the best way for people to have their say in the matter is to put it to a vote.  It is something that people do care deeply about and truly what better way for people to have a full community airing of this topic than by letting them go to the ballot.  November will be the perfect time for us to address this and she appreciates that everyone cares deeply about our community, as does she, and she thinks this is going to be a really productive discussion among people who care about Ridgewood.  She stated that they would encourage everyone to come out and they are more than willing to discuss the facts that they have put on the website, as there is nothing that is alternative or questionable about them, and interpretation may differ.  She thinks it is important that they come to a community determination of them.  

 

Siobhan Crann Winograd, 274 Ivy Place, stated that she thinks at this point everyone should be on the same page that no matter what your vote would be in November there is a public question.  They spent the past 18 months engaging with the community, Board of Education, and the Village Council.  Every time they issue a fact, all of their facts are submitted directly to the Village Council and the Board of Education.  If there is any discrepancy or something that they are promoting, they do feel that including the Village Council as public officials with their messaging would be the perfect opportunity, if there was a mistake, the Council would let them know.  Ms. Winograd stated that there is no doubt there is a question and the best place for a question such as this is on the ballot.  She added that it is important for the people who are listening to this, they are a group of citizens who motivated to do this, but the Village Council could have placed the question there.  Since they have been writing about this for almost two years, and several of their requests have gone unresponded to, they are motivated to do this.

 

Ms. Winograd stated that she thinks at this point, in time to move forward, they should all acknowledge there is going to be a question and how people want to answer it is up to them.  People can vote their will and their way, and all of us should want that.  She said that if they got something wrong, the Village Council gets emails from them every time they issue a fact, and they would welcome an email if they got something wrong, rather than comments from the dais that something is wrong.  They could have made a mistake some way but they feel that their facts are cited, thorough, and vetted.  There is a question and there is no better place to answer it than on the ballot this November.

 

Linda Tarzian, 576 Highland Avenue, stated that she wanted to make a comment in support of maintaining the citizen taxpayer right to vote and the need to adhere to all appropriate protocols and not eliminate them in the face of pressure tactics to remove our civic duty to vote.  She encouraged the Board of Education to disregard this nefarious motion to remove the right to vote and to take seriously the responsibility to us as taxpayers.

 

Anne Loving, 342 South Irving Street, stated that she is calling to say that they have been doing great work in the downtown to help support the businesses and she is very happy that they are moving to the west side and to the businesses over there.  She has concerns about the east end of Ridgewood Avenue as they seem to be quite neglected and she hopes that they will do something in that important area, as well.

 

Ms. Loving stated that regarding One Village One Vote, she is completely opposed to it because it would take away their legal right to vote on the Board of Education budget.  She added that it is really outrageous, possibly hilarious, that they are proposing that we have a vote on denying us our right to vote.  Her opinion on this initiative is not really the main concern here; this group has put forth false information during their petition drive and their lawyer gave false information to the Judge.  This is disgraceful and she sincerely hopes that the Judge’s decision is going to be challenged by our government. 

 

There were no additional comments from the public, and Mayor Knudsen closed public comment.

 

Mayor Knudsen stated that she has expressed her concerns repeatedly that the information shared relative to the cost savings by election consolidation the numbers are inaccurate and she will certainly be happy to detail those next week.  She added that a few weeks ago they were told $100,000 and now its tens of thousands of dollars, she thinks it is important to note the savings to the Village taxpayers by maintain those elections is far greater than $100,000 and she will outline that significant savings to not consolidating next week during the Public Meeting.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that she looked at the figures that One Village One Vote has put forward and it comports with what she has seen in our budget figures so far so she hasn’t seen so far that their facts are inaccurate.  Mayor Knudsen stated that she will detail the figures next week, but reiterated that it is a significant savings to Ridgewood taxpayers to maintain the Spring vote on the budget, a long term tax savings to the taxpayers.

 

Councilwoman Walsh asked Mr. Rogers about at the beginning of the meeting how he talked about the litigation and is there an opportunity for the Village Council to get a special meeting so that they can talk maybe before the next meeting.  Mr. Rogers stated that the Village Council could schedule a special meeting according to the Open Public Meetings Act and he doesn’t know when they could fit that it.  Councilwoman Walsh stated that because all of this is going on and they have not been able to meet as a Council to even discuss it, she would feel more comfortable if the five Village Councilmembers could get together to discuss it.  Mr. Rogers stated that unfortunately it can’t be done without the Open Public Meetings Act being satisfied, and it would be difficult with the next meeting a week away and the holiday weekend.  Councilwoman Walsh asked if they could set it for Tuesday.  Mr. Rogers stated that they could talk to Ms. Mailander to see if that could be done.  Mayor Knudsen stated that it was a great point and they would see what they could do with that.

 

  1. ADJOURNMENT

 

There being no further business to come before the Village Council, on a motion by Deputy Mayor Sedon, seconded by Councilwoman Walsh, and carried unanimously by voice vote, the Village Council’s Work Session was adjourned at 9:31 P.M.

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________

                                                                                      Susan Knudsen                         

                                                                                                              Mayor                                    

 

 

 

 

______________________________

              Donna M. Jackson

           Deputy Village Clerk

 

  • Hits: 72

 

A SPECIAL PUBLIC MEETING OF THE VILLAGE COUNCIL OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD HELD VIA ZOOM, DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, ON JULY 8, 2020 AT 7:30 P.M.

 

  1. CALL TO ORDER – OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT – ROLL CALL

 

Mayor Knudsen called the meeting to order at 8:43 P.M. and read the Statement of Compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act.  At roll call the following were present: Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen.  Also present were Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk; Donna Jackson, Deputy Village Clerk; and Matthew Rogers, Village Attorney. 

 

  1. INTRODUCTION OF ORDINANCE 3803 – Amend Chapter 265 Vehicles and Traffic – Allow Changes to Parking Regulations in Hudson Street Parking Garage and on Streets

 

Mayor Knudsen moved the reading of ordinance 3803 by title on first reading and that the Public Hearing thereon be opened.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3803 by title:

 

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND CHAPTER 265 OF THE CODE OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD, VEHICLES AND TRAFFIC, AT SECTION 265-18, “REGULATIONS NOT EXCLUSIVE” AND SECTION 265-19, “PARKING PROHIBITED AT ALL TIMES”

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon moved that ordinance 3803 be adopted on first reading and that August 5, 2020 be fixed as the date for the hearing thereon.  Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion.  

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. RESOLUTIONS

 

THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTIONS, NUMBERED 20-201 THROUGH 20-205, WERE ADOPTED BY A CONSENT AGENDA, WITH ONE VOTE BY THE VILLAGE COUNCIL:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. ADJOURNMENT

 

There being no further business to come before the Village Council, on a motion by Councilwoman Walsh, seconded by Councilwoman Perron, and carried unanimously by voice vote, the Village Council’s Special Public Meeting was adjourned at 8:47 P.M.

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________

                                                                        Susan Knudsen                                                                                                                                                                                     Mayor            

 

 

 

______________________________

          Donna M. Jackson

        Deputy Village Clerk

A SPECIAL PUBLIC MEETING OF THE VILLAGE COUNCIL OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD HELD VIA ZOOM, DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, ON JULY 8, 2020 AT 7:30 P.M.

 

  1. CALL TO ORDER – OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT – ROLL CALL

 

Mayor Knudsen called the meeting to order at 8:43 P.M. and read the Statement of Compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act.  At roll call the following were present: Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen.  Also present were Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk; Donna Jackson, Deputy Village Clerk; and Matthew Rogers, Village Attorney. 

 

  1. INTRODUCTION OF ORDINANCE 3803 – Amend Chapter 265 Vehicles and Traffic – Allow Changes to Parking Regulations in Hudson Street Parking Garage and on Streets

 

Mayor Knudsen moved the reading of ordinance 3803 by title on first reading and that the Public Hearing thereon be opened.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3803 by title:

 

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND CHAPTER 265 OF THE CODE OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD, VEHICLES AND TRAFFIC, AT SECTION 265-18, “REGULATIONS NOT EXCLUSIVE” AND SECTION 265-19, “PARKING PROHIBITED AT ALL TIMES”

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon moved that ordinance 3803 be adopted on first reading and that August 5, 2020 be fixed as the date for the hearing thereon.  Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion.  

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. RESOLUTIONS

 

THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTIONS, NUMBERED 20-201 THROUGH 20-205, WERE ADOPTED BY A CONSENT AGENDA, WITH ONE VOTE BY THE VILLAGE COUNCIL:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. ADJOURNMENT

 

There being no further business to come before the Village Council, on a motion by Councilwoman Walsh, seconded by Councilwoman Perron, and carried unanimously by voice vote, the Village Council’s Special Public Meeting was adjourned at 8:47 P.M.

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________

                                                                        Susan Knudsen                                                                                                                                                                                     Mayor            

 

 

 

______________________________

          Donna M. Jackson

        Deputy Village ClerkA SPECIAL PUBLIC MEETING OF THE VILLAGE COUNCIL OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD HELD VIA ZOOM, DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, ON JULY 8, 2020 AT 7:30 P.M.

 

  1. CALL TO ORDER – OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT – ROLL CALL

 

Mayor Knudsen called the meeting to order at 8:43 P.M. and read the Statement of Compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act.  At roll call the following were present: Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen.  Also present were Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk; Donna Jackson, Deputy Village Clerk; and Matthew Rogers, Village Attorney. 

 

  1. INTRODUCTION OF ORDINANCE 3803 – Amend Chapter 265 Vehicles and Traffic – Allow Changes to Parking Regulations in Hudson Street Parking Garage and on Streets

 

Mayor Knudsen moved the reading of ordinance 3803 by title on first reading and that the Public Hearing thereon be opened.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3803 by title:

 

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND CHAPTER 265 OF THE CODE OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD, VEHICLES AND TRAFFIC, AT SECTION 265-18, “REGULATIONS NOT EXCLUSIVE” AND SECTION 265-19, “PARKING PROHIBITED AT ALL TIMES”

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon moved that ordinance 3803 be adopted on first reading and that August 5, 2020 be fixed as the date for the hearing thereon.  Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion.  

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:             Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, Walsh, and Mayor Knudsen

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:        None

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. RESOLUTIONS

 

THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTIONS, NUMBERED 20-201 THROUGH 20-205, WERE ADOPTED BY A CONSENT AGENDA, WITH ONE VOTE BY THE VILLAGE COUNCIL:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. ADJOURNMENT

 

There being no further business to come before the Village Council, on a motion by Councilwoman Walsh, seconded by Councilwoman Perron, and carried unanimously by voice vote, the Village Council’s Special Public Meeting was adjourned at 8:47 P.M.

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________

                                                                        Susan Knudsen                                                                                                                                                                                     Mayor            

 

 

 

______________________________

          Donna M. Jackson

        Deputy Village Clerk

  • Hits: 61

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