A REGULAR WORK SESSION OF THE VILLAGE COUNCIL OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD HELD IN THE SYDNEY V. STOLDT, JR. COURT ROOM OF THE RIDGEWOOD VILLAGE HALL, 131 NORTH MAPLE AVENUE, RIDGEWOD, NEW JERSEY ON JANUARY 9, 2019 AT 7:30 P.M.
- CALL TO ORDER – OPEN PUBLIC MEETINGS ACT – ROLL CALL – FLAG SALUTE
Mayor Hache 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 Knudsen, Sedon, Voigt, Walsh, and Mayor Hache. Also present were Matthew Rogers, Village Attorney; Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk; and Donna Jackson, Deputy Village Clerk.
Mayor Hache 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 armed forces and all our first responders.
- COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC
Robert Upton, 172 West Glen Avenue, Chair of the Ridgewood Environmental Advisory Committee (REAC), stated that the environmental problems associated with plastics are being widely publicized, and they frequently hear that with the current rate of use of single use plastics, there will be more plastics in the ocean than fish by 2050. He stated that tonight they wanted to address single use plastic bags, which are the type used by grocery and convenience stores. In late 2017, REAC asked the Village Council to impose restrictions on single use plastic bags, and the Village Council asked them to seek input from the community. Mr. Upton stated that in June REAC reported back to the Village Council that the results of surveys of the Chamber of Commerce and the Ridgewood Guild, and receiving no objections to restrictions, and since then they have addressed the CBD Committee, the Stable hands, and have contacted the local grocery chain stores, and have received no objections to restrictions.
Mr. Upton stated that REAC has asked to schedule a presentation to the Village Council requesting that the Village enact an ordinance banning the use of single use plastic bags, and imposing a fee for the use of single use paper bags. This ordinance is along the lines of those passed in Hoboken, and thirteen other municipalities. He shared copies of the Hoboken ordinance with the Village Council, and added that REAC wanted to present to the Council more fully in the next few weeks and further invite the public to comment on this issue to achieve better input.
Saurabh Dani, 390 Bedford Road, thanked Mayor Hache, Mr. Rogers, Ms. Mailander, and Ms. Jackson for working on a smoother process for OPRA requests. He added that for the last two years, Diwali was published in the Ridgewood calendar, however, this year it was omitted and he wished to bring that to the attention of the Village Council. Mr. Dani added that each page of the Village calendar has advertisements, and he was wondering how those advertisers were chosen, such as through a bid process or was it published somewhere. He asked if it was competitive.
Rurik Halaby, 374 Evergreen Place, stated that he supported REAC and this evening he made sure to bring a reusable water bottle. He commended the Village on recycling, as the information was clear and informative. He added that the traffic lights in the Village were in a sad state. Mr. Halaby mentioned smart traffic lights for drivers and pedestrians, and suggested making it a Village issue rather than a County issue by taking $1 million to renovate the traffic lights. He stated that the Village Council is good at raising money for pet projects, so he thinks they can get the money and just get it done. He added that he would like to see some progress with the garage, as by the time it is done the Village will have just caught up to where it was before. He urged the Council to think long term, as somehow the Council responds to quick stimuli and questioned what the plan was for more parking in the long run.
Marcia Ringel, 250 Ferris Place, stated that she was speaking for the Preserve Graydon Coalition that the fees in the provided documentation indicate that the coupons would be eleven in a book and would expire at the end of the summer. As discussed before, she was hoping they would not expire, but if that were to be the case, she was hoping that the books would be smaller because it would be hard to use up eleven coupons. She added that charging $20 for non-resident guests is probably a dead in the water objection; however, she doesn’t think it should be a higher charge for other people.
Ms. Ringel stated that every year the Village calendar has errors, and this year there are two Jewish New Years, and a lot of meetings are listed wrong which is going to cause a lot of confusion. She stated that the Board of Adjustment meetings that are on Tuesdays are listed on the next day. She added that she would recommend someone go through the calendar, create a one page sheet of errors and mail it to everyone in town, and place a copy in every calendar that has not yet been distributed. We should also make it very clear on the website that there was an error in the calendar. Ms. Ringel added that the New York Times and other publications acknowledge their errors, and she recommended stating the problem and giving the correction.
Eugene Lorenzi, 202 South Van Dien Avenue, stated that in May last year he went before the Village Council asking for the $900 that he spent for his sidewalk that the Village machinery broke while taking down a tree. He added that the Deputy Mayor visited his house and saw the sidewalk. Mr. Lorenzi added that it had been seven months, but he has received no communication.
There were no additional public comments.
Mayor Hache stated that he would address some of the public comments in order.
Regarding the Village calendar advertisements, Ms. Mailander stated that every year the Village sends out letters to stores that have advertised in the past, as well as to all local businesses to let them know that they have advertising opportunities.
Mayor Hache stated that regarding progress on the parking garage, there were presentations from Epic a couple of months ago to talk about the timeline and logistics. It is scheduled to break ground late spring, and has been pushed up as the testing of the soil has been completed, and it will only require shallow footings. Tonight they will go over the maturity schedule of the bond, and they are already making arrangements for the commuter spots once the construction begins.
Mayor Hache asked for the status regarding Mr. Lorenzi and the damage to his sidewalk. Ms. Mailander stated that she would check with the Village Insurance Adjuster to see where his claim stood and then they would go from there, and she would be in contact with him. She added that she had a long conversation with him several months ago, and they said it would be pursued through insurance, and she would find out what the result was and then would be back in touch with Mr. Lorenzi.
- MANAGERS REPORT
Annual Parking Permits – Ms. Mailander stated that Premium Parking permits, which can be used in all lots, are, sold out. There are permits for $975 which allows parking in all lots except the Hudson Street Lot. There are Hudson Street Parking Lot permits for $1300, which will be converted into a ride-share program when the Hudson Street Garage is being built. All applicants for parking permits must bring their license and registration, or a photocopy of them with their application.
Meet the Mayor – Ms. Mailander stated that on Saturday, January 12th Mayor Hache would be available by appointment for Meet the Mayor from 9:00 A.M. to 11:00 A.M. She encouraged interested individuals to contact the Village Clerk’s Office at extension 206 to make an appointment.
Christmas Trees – Ms. Mailander stated that Christmas trees were being collected during the month of January, on Tuesdays on the East side and Thursdays on the West side. Residents can also drop their trees in the designated spot in the Graydon Pool parking lot on any day.
Leaf Collection – Ms. Mailander stated that leaf collection has been completed. If a resident still has leaves, they can bag their leaves in biodegradable paper bags and put them in the planting strip between the curb and the sidewalk. If there is no sidewalk, the bags can be placed on the edge of a resident’s property. The resident can then call the Streets Department at 201-670-5585 and they will pick them up through the end of January. Leaves in their biodegradable paper bags can also be brought to the Recycling Center which is open from 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. Ms. Mailander reminded residents that leaves cannot be placed in plastic bags.
Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration – Ms. Mailander stated that the Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration would take place Monday, January 21st at 10:00 A.M. at the United Methodist Church at 100 Dayton Street. The theme is ‘Lift Every Voice Now More Than Ever.’ The guest Preacher will be Reverend Gregory Jerome Jackson and guest speaker will be Ms. Nancy Giles.
Additional events during this weekend will include a film, ‘King in the Wilderness,’ on January 18th at 7:00 P.M. at the Ridgewood Public Library. January 19th at 4:00 P.M. a Social Justice Panel Discussion led by Attorney General Grover Gruel will take place at All Saints Episcopal Church in Glen Rock, and on January 20th at 4:00 P.M. a gospel concert takes place at Mount Bethel Baptist Church.
Schedler Property Update – Ms. Mailander stated that currently they are in the process of prequalifying contractors for the restoration and rehabilitation of the Zabriskie-Schedler House. The next step will be to have qualified contractors bid on the project. The Ridgewood Building Department is reviewing the plan for the historic restoration of the house, and within the month of January the Village will receive a written report on the results of the archaeological investigation of the Schedler property. They are also trucking in clean dirt from various locations so they will be able to level out the property and create the berm.
Village Website – Ms. Mailander stated that the Village website has been updated, and it is easier to find some things. She thanked Dylan Hansen for the many hours he spent working on the website and also Deputy Mayor Knudsen and Mayor Hache for their input.
Village Office Closure –Ms. Mailander stated that Village offices would be closed on Monday, January 21st in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. There will be no recycling or garbage pickup on this day and the Recycling Center will be closed.
Restaurant Week – Ms. Mailander stated that the Ridgewood Chamber of Commerce and Valley Health System are hosting three Restaurant Weeks beginning on Sunday, January 13th through 17th, the 20th through 24th, and the 27th through the 31st. She added that they offer a prix fixe meal at $30.19.
- COUNCIL REPORTS
Shade Tree Commission – Councilman Sedon stated that they met yesterday and the fall planting is completed and the Village planted 140 street trees this year, and 20 of those were through the Adopt a Tree program.
Interfaith Religious Leaders of Ridgewood – Councilwoman Knudsen stated that yesterday morning the Interfaith Religious Leaders met at Emmanuel Baptist Church and had a conversation about the Martin Luther King Celebration weekend. She thanked Ms. Mailander for reviewing the schedule of events. She added that posters would be put up and the information would be shared on social media and the Village website so that everyone has access to the schedule of events for the weekend, as it promises to be a spectacular weekend of reflection.
Councilwoman Knudsen added that they also determined that the Holocaust Memorial Service will be Wednesday, May 1st and they will look forward to details as those firms up.
Ridgewood Arts Council – Councilwoman Knudsen stated that last night the Ridgewood Arts Council met and had a lengthy discussion about the possibility of a Kissing Ball Restoration Committee as there are many individuals who would like to see them reinstated downtown. She added that perhaps as many of the balls as possibly could be rehabbed and then integrated into the snowflakes that are there for the Downtown for the Holidays. She added that with the success of the vacant storefront window display at the Wilsey Building, they are looking for funding options to expand that and for landlords who would like to participate as it would add some vibrancy while those locations are waiting to be rented.
Councilwoman Knudsen added that they were looking for old bicycle racks to paint and restore and then place around downtown. She added that they would also be hosting an artist talk which will be featuring Ridgewood Art Council member and resident, Dana Glaser, who will talk about his current movie, ‘A Case of the Blue.’
Historic Preservation Commission – Councilwoman Knudsen stated that HPC meets tomorrow evening.
Planning Board – Councilwoman Knudsen stated that the Planning Board meets next Tuesday.
Chamber of Commerce – Councilwoman Walsh stated that the Chamber of Commerce met this morning and Restaurant Week is Sunday through Thursday, for three weeks, with meals at $30.19. Participating restaurants are listed on the Chamber website and they have a flyer that will be in the paper as well. She added that there are six new members, with about 350 members. They had conversations about the CBD regarding the number of businesses that are on the West side that don’t have the ability to participate in the hanging signs. So, they raised the question if there was a possibility to do a banner for the trestle that would promote several businesses at their cost.
Councilwoman Walsh added that while some people love the parking kiosks, there are many that are challenged by the kiosks. Several have stated that the lettering is too small, it is hard to read the instructions, and to see the screen if it is sunny out. She asked if there could be a larger font explanation near the kiosk so that those that have challenges reading the smaller lettering would be able to understand it. She added that Parkmobile is still allowing repeat parking, and that the Chamber is happy that there is enforcement, but do not feel that there is enough enforcement for the repeat parking. Councilwoman Walsh added that if an individual is putting money in the meter, how the enforcement would know if it is a repeat parker. She added that there was a question about chalking the tires which would be the easiest way for the enforcement officers to know which cars is repeat parking.
Citizen Safety Advisory Committee – Councilman Voigt stated that the Citizen Safety Advisory Committee met on December 20th, and discussed North Walnut Street between Linwood Avenue and Franklin Avenue with a recommendation to put a yellow line down the middle of the road. Several residents came to the meeting and stated that they did not want the yellow line as there were concerns about it devaluing their properties. They asked the Committee to look at traffic volume and calming as it is a fairly busy street.
They discussed sidewalk that is to be built along West Glen, from Oak Street west to Monroe. The Village Engineer reviewed the lane going west, and found that there are some environmental riparian zone issues moving west from Hillcrest that will prevent sidewalks from being constructed along that area. So, it will be built from Oak Street up to Hillcrest as best as possible.
Councilman Voigt stated that a suggestion from CSAC was for the Village to perform an audit on all of the parking regulations to ensure conformity and relevance. CSAC endorsed the new Stop, Look and Wave Campaign which is seeking $3,000 from the Home and School Association for the campaign.
Ridgewood Public Library – Councilman Voigt stated that Ridgewood Library had its Holiday Party on December 16th at It’s Greek to Me, attended by Deputy Mayor Knudsen and himself. Special thanks go to Paul Vagianos, owner, and several Library Board Trustees who paid for the event. There are photos of the event in last week’s Ridgewood News.
Central Business District Advisory Council – Mayor Hache stated that CBDAC was meeting tomorrow morning. Neil Dessai and Ed Schultz, Community Planners with NV5 will discuss the Master Plan with regard to the CBD, following the same format as all other groups that they meet with. He added that he has concerns about the lighting downtown as the light is drab and he was concerned that some of the intersections are pretty dark. He was almost hit with two of his sons as they weren’t visible crossing the street until they were in the headlights of the car coming down Ridgewood Avenue.
Mayor Hache stated that he and the Village Engineer met with PSE&G and went over some of the concerns that they had and PSE&G seems to be an engaged partner. There was a follow-up meeting late December, and they toured the areas of concern. There is an inventory of what the lights are, and aesthetically some of the bulbs are different colors or don’t work. The good news is that PSE&G is being very responsive, and there is a work order for Oak Street and Ridgewood Avenue which has been approved by the Village Engineer and sent back to PSE&G.
- Ridgewood Water
- Award Contract – Eastside Reservoir Improvements
Ms. Mailander stated that the Eastside Reservoir concrete storage tank has a two million gallon capacity and is located in Ridgewood. The work includes interior and exterior cleaning, concrete repairs, and installation of a tank mixer to improve water quality. The rehabilitation will prolong the life of the tank and improve water quality. There were twelve bids that were picked up, and seven bids were received, which range greatly. The Engineer on record, T&M Associates, prepared the construction documents, reviewed all bids and will assist Ridgewood Water with administering the construction phase of the project. Their recommendation is the low bidder, Ray Palmer Associates, in the amount of $246,600. This is being done through the USEPA Administrative Order of Consent, to be completed by July 15th of this year, and is the final project required under the Order for Ridgewood Water tank system, and funding is under the Capital Budget.
Councilman Sedon asked if there were any more projects that the Water Utility is going to have to pick up under the USEPA Order. Mr. Calbi stated that the Administrative Order that is referenced has several different parts to it, and the only thing remaining part after the tanks, are three abandoned wells.
- Award Second Year Contract – Landscaping Services
Ms. Mailander stated that the landscaping services are for all Ridgewood Water owned properties. This is the second year of a two year bid, given to the lowest responsible bidder, LTI, Inc. of Montville, in the amount of $61,000.
- Award Second Year Contract – Line Stop and Valve Insertion
Ms. Mailander stated that this is the second year of a two year contract, to the original lowest bidder, Carner Brothers of Roseland, in the amount of $100,000. This is being paid out of the Water Utility Operating Budget.
- Award Second Year Contract – Servicing and Repairing of Electric Source
Ms. Mailander stated that this is the second year of a two year contract, to the original lowest bidder for servicing and repairing of electric source, to Vanore Electric, Inc. of Hackensack, in the amount of $250,000. This is being paid for out of the Ridgewood Water Utility Budget.
- Award Second Year Contract – Water Billing and Data Collection Services
Ms. Mailander stated that this is the award for the second year of a two year contract to the original sole bidder. This is for water billing and data collection services, to Computil, Inc. of Shelton, Connecticut, in the amount of $237,395. They do all processing, custom programming, and conversion of existing data.
- Award Second Year Contract – Furnishing and Delivering Sodium Hypochlorite Solution
Ms. Mailander stated that this is the second year of a two year contract, which went to the lowest responsible bidder, Miracle Chemical Company, of Farmingdale. The price is $1.545 per gallon, in an amount not to exceed $135,000 and is being budgeted for in the Ridgewood Water Utility Budget.
- Award Contract – Servicing and Repair of Potable Water Pumping Facilities
Ms. Mailander stated that this bid was accepted in December 2018, with two bid specifications being picked up and one bid was received. The Servicing and Repair is a unit price service for various repairs and replacements on the water system supply, treatment and distribution equipment contained within the well houses, transfer stations, treatment buildings and booster stations. The calculated total of $237,840 is below the $250,000 estimate for this bid. The sole responsible bidder is Wm. Stothoff Company, of Flemington. Funding will be established in the Water Utility Operating Budget.
- Award Professional Services Contract – Per- and Poly-Fluoroalkyl Substances Planning and Treatment Study
Ms. Mailander stated that PFOA and PFOS compounds are found in our water and they are chemicals that are created from contamination and found in many things. Ridgewood Water recommended a Capital Treatment Plan to be developed to reduce the presence of PFAS compounds in the water system to a non-detect level. The NJDEP has promulgated a maximum contaminant level for these compounds. Mott MacDonald, the Engineering Firm, has completed several successful projects with the Village and created the hydraulic model that is necessary to evaluate the treatment plan. Mr. Calbi’s recommendation is to award the professional services contract to Mott MacDonald of Iselin, in an amount not to exceed $168,600 for development of the treatment plan. Funding is in the Ridgewood Water Capital Budget.
Councilman Voigt questioned the maximum amounts for PFOA and PFOS compounds, and asked what the difference was for them and why one was higher than the other. Mr. Calbi stated that they were numbers established by the Drinking Water Quality Institute, which recommends these numbers based on health studies performed by the Board and other research for each contaminant. These numbers are based on lifetime exposure to the contaminant and the one in a million chance that someone exposed to those contaminants over a lifetime could be affected by it.
- Award Contract – Asbestos Abatement and Boiler Replacement
Ms. Mailander stated that on December 21st, they found that the boiler at the Glen Avenue Water Facility was in need of emergency replacement. Upon further inspection it was found that there was existing asbestos that needed to be removed. The asbestos has been removed by Greenwood Asbestos Consultants, and the air quality tested by Envirovision, Inc. Because of the urgency of the repair, Mr. Calbi requests an emergency award to Generation III Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning of Waldwick, for the replacement of the boiler in an amount not to exceed $33,800. The funding is available.
- Award Second Year Contract – Laboratory Analysis Services
Ms. Mailander stated that was the second year of a two year contract to the lowest responsible bidder for the provision of Laboratory Analysis Services. This goes to Aqua Pro-Tech Labs of Fairfield, in the amount of $128,460, and the funding is found in the Water Utility Budget.
- Parking in Train Station Lot after 6:00 P.M.
Mayor Hache stated that several meetings ago they talked about the Train Station lot and when it empties towards the evening and diners descend on the downtown. In order to relieve, the parking demand, they spoke about not requiring a resident parking pass to park at the train station past 6:00 P.M., so that you are still required to pay the meters but are not required to have the Ridgewood Parking Permit.
Ms. Mailander stated that this was open to anyone and was open for discussion, and it would be open to whatever spots were open at that time. Councilwoman Knudsen stated that it made sense to her, as restricting anyone needing to have the pass to park there and all of the spaces are empty at that time, it doesn’t make sense, so they may as well make the spots accessible to anyone who wants them. Mayor Hache stated that he heard from several residents that they like to take advantage of the train station parking in the evenings, but when the parking hours were extended it was no longer an option for them.
Ms. Mailander added that it was beneficial along the west side because there is minimal parking there for the businesses. She added that they would have an ordinance for that at the next meeting.
- Maturity Schedule and Resolution Authorizing Bond Sale for Funding the Hudson Street Parking Garage
Ms. Mailander stated that Steve Sanzari, Village Treasurer, was going to speak about the maturity schedule and resolution authorizing the bond sale for funding the Hudson Street Parking Garage.
Mr. Sanzari reviewed the amortization schedule that was provided to the Village Council, stating that it was a 40 year amortization schedule with the bonds, the actual final amount would be $11,575,000 and it is an estimated interest rate of 3.71%. It is also anticipated that the Village will receive a significant premium at the time of the sale which will reduce that interest rate over the lifetime of the bond.
Mr. Sanzari stated that bids will be received on January 29th and there will be a closing estimated date of February 20th.
Councilman Voigt asked what a significant premium was. Mr. Sanzari stated that the bidders will bid a premium whereby they are looking for the right to purchase the bonds. Last year, there was a bond anticipation note sale, and they received a premium of a little over $1 million, and after that one million dollars, it reduces the interest rate over the lifetime of the bond. Councilman Voigt asked what he thought that might be. Mr. Sanzari stated that it will be over $1 million as the sale is only $11,575,000, and they were actually looking for $12 million. So they will have more than enough of a cushion. Councilman Voigt stated that getting back that $1 million; they could use it to pay down the net. Mr. Sanzari stated that usually you prorate those funds to offset the interest payment that is coming due. So, if you have a shortfall in revenue, you can use those premium funds to offset the revenue in the budget.
Mayor Hache stated that there is the expected premium, and then they weren’t paying principal until 2021 which would be the cushion that they were building up. Mr. Sanzari stated that the premium is estimated at $1 million, so you could offset the first two interest payments and it all depends on what the revenue flow is and to the Village’s advantage. The capitalized interest is that the $129,000 and $231,000 is actually a construction cost.
- Amend Parking Permit Ordinance – Hudson Street Parking Lot Permit
Ms. Mailander stated that this is to make an ordinance for the permit for the Hudson Street lot, and when the construction begins, those same people who hold a Hudson Street permit will then participate in the ride share program.
- Award Second Year Contract – Landfill Disposal of Solid Waste
Ms. Mailander stated that this is the second year of a two year contract to the lowest responsible bidder, IWS Transfer Systems of NJ of Jersey City, in the amount of $66.95 per ton.
- Declare Property Surplus – Parks Department Log Pile
Ms. Mailander stated that the Parks Department would like to declare the stockpile of uncut lengths of logs at the construction yard as surplus. These are remnants from tree work done throughout the past year. Usually, dumpsters haul away the logs which costs $700 per dumpster. They are going to try to sell them on govdeals.com to hopefully save the Village some money.
Mayor Hache asked if it could be chopped up for firewood. Councilman Sedon stated that it was an impressive pile of logs. Ms. Mailander stated that firewood is provided for free at the Recycling Center, but this was too much.
- Declare Property Surplus – Various Vehicles
Ms. Mailander stated that the vehicles to declare as surplus include an International Model Sewer Jet, Falcon Single Burner Hot Box Trailer, Crane Carrier Corp Chassis, 1997 Volvo Chassis, and a 1999 Dodge Wagon. These will be declared surplus and sold on GovDeals.com. She added that the Village has been doing well on this site, and is clearing the surplus inventory of the Village. Some vehicles will be used for training purposes by the Fire Department or Police Department and then when they are done, they get rid of the remnants.
- Authorize Release of Escrow Funds – 143 and 147 West Glen Avenue
Ms. Mailander stated that the project for 143 and 147 West Glen Avenue is now complete, and the remaining escrow balance of $12,348 will be refunded and they need a resolution to do so.
- Award Contract – Recreation Program Instruction for 2019
Ms. Mailander stated that every year they go out for proposals, eight were received, and there were seven returning vendors and one new vendor. The Recreation Division does not commit to all offers in the proposal and the pricing is negotiable throughout the year.
Councilwoman Knudsen stated that there were a number of businesses that responded with proposals, and there is a list that did not offer proposals but will work with them on pricing, but in looking at the request for proposal there are requirements that those that responded would have complied with and those that didn’t respond would not necessarily have that information on file. She added that on the RFP there is a request for the annual criminal background check on employees, so those that didn’t respond aren’t complying with the RFP. Ms. Mailander stated that she would check into it because they may be required to adhere to these things and she would get that information and provide it before next week’s meeting.
- Approve Shared Services Agreement – School Resource Officer
Ms. Mailander stated that the Village has received a resolution from the Ridgewood Board of Education for a Shared Services Agreement for the funding and establishment of a School Resource Officer. She added that the Village was paying all of it in 2018 but the BOE has agreed that for their budget year, they will fund until that time and then reconsider in the next fiscal year.
- Graydon Pool Membership Fees
Ms. Mailander stated that if the Resident is a Non-Member, a $20 fee is proposed per guest. If a Non-Resident Member is bringing a Resident guest, the Resident would simply buy a Resident Guest Pass for $15 per day, so a Resident would never be charged more than $15. Resident Members can buy the coupon books with 11 passes for $150. She felt that the Council expressed that they did not want an expiration date, so they will not have one, but if a new Council comes in and doesn’t want them, she think that they would give a certain timeframe in which they had to be redeemed.
Ms. Mailander added that regarding the Non-Resident Members and the guest passes purchased; in June 2018, 318 were purchased; in July 361 were purchased; in August 251 were purchased; and in September 55 were purchased; that is 981 total, and adding the additional $5 is almost $5,000 additional revenue.
Councilwoman Knudsen stated that regarding the expiration on the coupon booklet, she spoke to Mr. Rogers and asked him to elaborate on the law. Mr. Rogers stated that coupons are considered similar to gift cards; in that the law has recently been amended several times, but if there is no statement on a gift card that there is a termination date it doesn’t have a termination. It can’t be any sooner than five years. He added that coupons have been considered in a State Supreme Court case in the same way that it applied to gift cards. Looking at the thinking and reasoning of the court there is a good chance that they might find that the coupon has no expiration.
Mayor Hache stated that for the Village, they would have already received the money, and even if it doesn’t make sense in the future to redeem a $15 coupon when the rates are now $25, it was a decision that was made at the time, and he didn’t think they should have an expiration date on these.
Councilwoman Knudsen clarified about the Non-Resident Member Guest Passes purchased. Ms. Mailander asked whether the Council was in agreement to have no expiration date, to which everyone agreed. Mayor Hache asked if everyone was in agreement on the $20. Councilwoman Knudsen stated that she wasn’t sure about it because if people decide that it is too much, that $5,000 that would be made would be eroded down to nothing. Ms. Mailander stated that $20 for a family of four at $80, there isn’t much around here that could be done for that much.
Ms. Mailander added that the coupon book would have no expiration date, and these were the final questions remaining. She added that they would amend on the floor regarding the coupons not expiring, and they will adopt both ordinances.
- 2019 Bond Ordinance – Various Capital Improvements
Ms. Mailander stated that the Village introduced part of its bond ordinance in January for paving, and this year they are also going to put the senior bus on there. There are times when the senior bus doesn’t work, and the residents have come to rely on it running three days a week.
Mayor Hache stated that he was taken on a tour and went to Ridgecrest and went through the senior bus process, and in speaking with some of the residents it is life changing for them to have transportation to do food shopping, go to doctors’ appointments, and get around town. He added that with the money being spent on the bus, Billy will make it worth it.
Councilman Voigt asked if they were going to extend the hours on the bus. Mayor Hache stated that currently it is two days, and Age Friendly Ridgewood sponsors a third day. Ms. Mailander stated that she didn’t know, and if they go to five days they would need to get another driver, and then to have the riders accept that new driver is a bit of an adjustment.
Councilwoman Walsh added that Access Link is available to Bergen County residents, and as a supplement to the Village bus that could be used by individuals with disabilities and seniors for $3 each way. She added that they would have to go in person to the County Offices to fill out the application, but it was available seven days a week.
- Resolution to Amend Temporary Capital Budget
Ms. Mailander stated that because the Capital Budget hasn’t been adopted, this bond ordinance needs to be done prior to the adopting of the bond ordinance, as procedure.
- Amendments to Outdoor Café Ordinance
Ms. Mailander stated that as the Village Council knows, there have been some restaurants which have given the Village their permit applications, and then they find that vary how they lay out their seating, and sometimes they encroach into other places or are blocking meters. Tom Yotka; Tracy Jeffery, Village Code Enforcement Officer; Paula Perez, Assistant Zoning Officer; and Ms. Mailander sat down to try to figure out ways to make it more clear as to what is expected so that they won’t have as many violations in the future.
Mr. Yotka stated that in 2018, there were 57 licenses that were issued which resulted in 30 summonses being issued and those summonses were not all separate violations, but some establishments had the same violation multiple times throughout the season. They conducted periodic inspections, off hours and on weekends, to monitor the situation throughout the dining season. The bulk of the summonses were issued for the failure to maintain the 52 inch clearance and for encroachment issues. He added that some establishments expanded beyond their own property lines, especially as the season went on and the weather got warmer. He stated that they came up with a couple of recommendations to tighten it up.
Mr. Yotka stated that with every application, it is required that they provide site plans that indicate every possible obstruction that may affect pedestrian traffic. He displayed one property that had much involvement that they requested that the applicant get an architect to give a drawing. Some of the ordinance just needs to be tweaked to include parking meters, fire hydrants, signs, and a complete site plan so that they have something to work off of during the season. Ms. Mailander stated that they were not requiring the businesses to actually get a site plan, but just a drawing that was provided. Mr. Yotka stated that he was looking for a dining plan that can be drawn by the applicant; he just wants more detail on them.
He added that they wanted to limit the amount of barriers that are permitted and they have come up with three that seem to be pretty popular and maintain the character of the Village. Ms. Mailander added that this was going back to the A-Frame signs, as they only allow two certain types of signs, and so they were proposing three different types of barriers. Mr. Yotka stated that one type of barrier was the metal frame with the stretched canvas, which seemed to be popular. He added that one option was whether they wanted to allow the applicant to advertise on the screening of the barrier. He displayed a weighted barrier that has some pavers to maintain stability, and another type as well. Mr. Yotka added that if they were going to allow the barriers along the curb line, it was their opinion that they should be set back at least beyond the brick border, or a minimum of three feet due to parallel parking, and restricting people from getting out of their vehicles. He displayed an applicant that used planters as their barrier. He added that with curb line barriers and pedestrian sidewalk barriers, there were more options that he displayed as well.
Mr. Yotka added that he thinks they would like to eliminate some of the homemade barriers that are concrete block that is dry stacked and used as planters. One of the other concerns in the ordinance is that it does say that the barriers have to be removable, and they will request that at the end of the dining day they are placed up against the building. He added that the planters that are perpendicular to the buildings need to be moved to open the sidewalk to pedestrians. He displayed a barrier that was a violation that they would like to move away from allowing, which was tight to the curb and would restrict anyone from egressing their vehicle. Mr. Yotka stated that the ordinance stipulates that the barriers be placed at the beginning and ending of the dining area, and maintain the 52 inches for pedestrian traffic.
Mr. Yotka stated that they were facing a couple of challenges, and that the ordinance doesn’t need to be completely rewritten, but rather fine-tuned. Ms. Mailander added that they were recommending that the outdoor dining be permitted between March 1st and November 30th, and between December 1st and February 28th/29th it be removed completely. Also, the proposed fees have changes, which Ms. Mailander reviewed, with the proposed fees at 1-4 chairs $100; 5-12 chairs $200; 13-20 $300; over 20 chairs $500; and all benches $100. She added that it is more feasible to charge $500 for the extra area that they are taking up with 30 outdoor chairs and for the extra enforcement that is needed. She added that the sketch or plan where those tables would be placed indicating the meters, any walls, signs, or anything else. Once that application is approved, that is their layout and if they would like to change it, it would have to be reapproved. Varying from the layout would be subject to administrative action. She added that the maximum of three feet height for the barriers includes any plantings. Ms. Mailander stated that outdoor dining is approved only outside of that restaurant. If these amendments are approved and adopted, the recommendation is for a 30 day grace period so that there can be an initial discussion rather than a summons. They are hoping that this will enhance the outdoor dining process.
Mr. Yotka stated that because these would be minor changes to an existing ordinance, and a lot of applicants may not be aware of them, the 30 day grace period is a good time for re-education to allow them to get familiar with the new changes if they come about.
Councilwoman Walsh stated that she was curious when they were doing the site plan, if there was a rule of thumb in terms of number of seats per square footage. She added that over twenty chairs is a lot of chairs. Mr. Yotka stated that there is no particular formula, but it was dictated by whether or not they could maintain a 52 inch clearance, and any other obstructions that they may have. The main focus is that pedestrian traffic not be affected. Councilwoman Walsh stated that with over twenty chairs, were there health code issues with maintaining cleanliness outside. Ms. Jeffery stated that the Health Department would take care of that concern. They ask that an architect design the outside as well determine what would fit within the available space when any new business comes in to the Building Department.
Councilwoman Walsh stated that there must be a clearance that is required when a car door is opening. Mr. Yotka stated that he didn’t know if there was an engineering standard for that, but it is something they noticed in their tours. Ms. Jeffery stated that the current pavers that are in all locations, and if the barrier started just within that, it seemed to be wide enough for cars at three feet. Mr. Yotka stated that the 32 inches of the pavers plus the curb would give 36 inches. Councilwoman Knudsen stated that she agreed with Councilwoman Walsh. Councilman Sedon stated that some of the barriers were directly on the curb. Mr. Yotka stated that one of the consequences of moving the barrier from the curb limits the amount of sidewalk which in turn limits the amount of space that the applicant has, as some establishments could see a reduction in their seating in 2019. Councilman Sedon stated that if he was a restaurant owner and he had to choose between a table and seats or a barrier, he would forgo that design element.
Councilman Voigt stated that each of the restaurants would have a site plan, so Mr. Yotka would know how many tables and chairs they could have on the sidewalk, and he stated that he imagined they would take advantage of that plan, and asked how the Village would handle those adding chairs to that from a fee standpoint. Mr. Yotka stated that during the application process the restaurant is required to submit a sketch of their outdoor dining which has to be approved before they issue the license. Once that is issued, then that is binding. Councilman Voigt asked what would happen if they added tables and chairs. Ms. Jeffery stated that any increase or violation through the amount of tables and chairs or layout creates an automatic violation. The site plan can be amended if something changes through the season, but before they have the right to change it on site, it has to be approved.
Councilman Voigt asked how much money is made from this ordinance. Ms. Jeffery stated they had 57 applicants in 2018, which range anywhere from $350 to $500 per applicant. Mayor Hache stated that it equals around $20,000. Councilman Voigt asked if that money went into the General Budget. Mr. Yotka stated that it did. Councilman Voigt asked about the advertising on the barriers that were mentioned. Mr. Yotka stated that it was something to consider, as there was one establishment on Chestnut that had the canvas barriers with the restaurant name on it and he was asked to cover it up because it constituted as a sign. Councilman Voigt asked if they could charge for that. Ms. Jeffery stated that they may have to change the sign ordinance to add a fee. Councilman Voigt asked about the barriers at Starbucks which have a logo on them. Mr. Rogers stated that there currently isn’t an ordinance regarding that, which means that there hasn’t been any enforcement one way or the other. Councilman Voigt suggested charging for the signs on barriers for additional revenue. Ms. Jeffery added that most of the sections that they were on were about a six to eight foot section, and they could say the signs are whatever size square dimension at a maximum per barrier. Mr. Yotka added that another option was to not allow signs at all on the barrier and to maintain two or three different color schemes throughout the Village.
Councilwoman Knudsen stated that Councilman Voigt asked what happened when they changed the seating without approval but she didn’t hear what the punishment was for doing that. Ms. Jeffery stated that it was an automatic summons. Councilwoman Knudsen asked if there was a process of revoking a permit for repeat offenders. Mr. Yotka stated that it is in the ordinance and it is at the discretion of the Village Manager. Mayor Hache asked if it could be more definitive. Ms. Jeffery stated that it could be detailed more, such as after the third offense for the same violation, before it was revoked. Mayor Hache stated that if it was the same problem that was recurring that would be an issue. Ms. Jeffery stated that she discussed with the Court Administrator earlier, speaking with the Judge in reference to some of the fines and how they are currently handled. She added that there was a business that didn’t get an outdoor dining permit, with a full setup, and a $50 fine was given.
Councilwoman Knudsen stated that the 52 inches is a public safety issue, and if you have three strikes you should be out. She added that years ago she was sitting at the corner of Broad and Ridgewood Avenue, looking at what is now Finca, and there were women walking towards her with baby carriages. They had to go into the street in order to maneuver around all of the growth on the sidewalk. It is a hazard for people walking, in a wheelchair, or in a stroller. Ms. Jeffery added that it needs to be reiterated to the businesses that it is a privilege, and if they can’t conform they should be penalized. Mr. Rogers suggested thinking about it further, and discussing the detail that they are requiring that are safety concerns as opposed to aesthetics, and talking about violations for safety versus aesthetic concerns. He added that talking with Dawn Cetrulo, they can deal with actual licenses for restaurants. It’s a policy issue when a restaurant doesn’t apply for a permit but continuously takes the fine because he makes much more than that on a particular nigh. It is something that can also be brought in and dealt with. Ms. Jeffery stated that beside the 52 inches, the next biggest issue is adding additional chairs from the original approval, and then encroaching on other businesses.
Councilwoman Knudsen stated that in terms of advertising, it should be a percentage of the barrier, and if it gets to be too much it looks crazy. Ms. Jeffery asked if it should be applied to the canvas, or if someone uses a fence type barrier. Councilwoman Knudsen stated that it should be integrated into the piece as a design element. She added that regarding all barriers being moveable, from those dates where outdoor dining would not be permitted, every sidewalk must be completely clear which gives the Village the opportunity to do repair work and make sure that the snow can be cleared. Ms. Jeffery stated that if it is a planter that is there for part of the dining, it should be removed. Businesses that are not part of the outdoor dining would be advised that should be removed, as well. The Village Planner seemed to agree for streetscape, survey, and repairs that those items should be removed during a certain time also. Councilwoman Knudsen was in agreement that the sidewalk should be clear during that time.
Councilwoman Knudsen added that regarding the split rail fence that was displayed, she wasn’t sure how they would define what was appropriate. She added that she likes the black fencing, and the canvas stretch. Mr. Yotka added that it would be similar to what was done for the portable A-Frame signs. Ms. Jeffery added that it would be those three designs for the barriers and only those would be the choices.
Councilman Sedon asked if there was a definition for moveable. Ms. Jeffery added that they would need help with wording and how to define moveable legally. Mr. Rogers added that there were a number of different ways that it could be defined in order to identify it. Mr. Yotka added that the styles that have been identified are light and can be moved by two individuals. Councilwoman Knudsen added that nothing can be permanently secured. Ms. Jeffery stated that she was correct, and it was currently stated in the ordinance.
Mayor Hache added that he was very happy about this as it is a move in the right direction. He added that some of the violations got out of hand and he thinks that going in the off hours was helpful because you don’t see a lot of the craziness during the day. He added that he was surprised by the reactions of some of the restaurant owners. Suddenly it was a problem when it wasn’t before, but some of the things were pretty egregious. He stated that some of the barriers make it very difficult to get out of the car for individuals with mobility issues. He likes the fact that there will be a 30 day grace period. He loves the checklist which is helpful and that they can keep it in the store visibly. Mayor Hache added that the important thing is enforcement and he wants to make sure that they will continue to work the off hours and off days which is when enforcement would be most effective. Mr. Yotka added that one recommendation was that they approach it the same way that the Water Department did the enforcement; which was to rotate it. Ms. Mailander added that last year they added some additional people who could enforce for outdoor cafes. So, now they can do a rotating schedule at different times all the time, to create a surprise so we can be sure they will conform to what they said they would do.
Mayor Hache added that he had a question about the proposed fees, and asked about the percentage increase and the logic behind it. Ms. Jeffery stated that they didn’t want to go with a huge increase the first year, and went up a little on each one, adding that the biggest offenders are the ones with the most chairs, and looking at how much money they are making off those chairs and how much enforcement is required, the higher fee would cover. Mr. Yotka added that they could look at a percentage increase across the board and round it up from that.
Councilwoman Knudsen stated that this would be for permits that are for this season, and the ordinance would now apply. She added that this was such an improvement. Ms. Mailander stated that if this is introduced next week, and then it would be effective in March. Ms. Jeffery stated that they normally mail the application in January and the majority comes on the first nice day and it could easily be said they wouldn’t issue until March 1st this year.
- Amendments for Regulations for Dumpsters on Private Property
Ms. Mailander stated that there is a dumpster ordinance currently, but it pertains to public property in residential zones and where dumpsters can be placed. Councilman Voigt stated that they had a neighbor who had a dumpster in their front yard for four months which created a lot of unhappy neighbors. He stated that the questions he had were regarding dumpsters on private property. He didn’t think there were permits required for dumpsters on private property. Mr. Yotka stated that there was no permit required. Councilman Voigt stated that was one question to consider, in addition to how long the dumpster can be allowed on private property. He added that an additional concern was the placement on the property.
Councilwoman Knudsen asked whether the individual was doing construction during that entire period. Councilman Voigt stated that the construction was on and off, so the dumpster sat there for a long period of time. Councilwoman Knudsen stated that in terms of placement, she would imagine that it would be precarious to place it anywhere other than the front driveway or the front of the house. Mr. Yotka stated that most of the time a large truck delivers them, so they need room to maneuver. Councilwoman Knudsen added that they need height because of wires. Ms. Jeffery stated that placing the dumpster in the driveway takes up potential parking, which then creates a problem with cars. Mr. Yotka stated that with most of the construction projects in the Village, the dumpsters are on the front lawn as the driveway is usually reserved for the contractors, deliveries, and the homeowner’s cars if present.
Mr. Rogers stated that perhaps they should look at this similar to the pods. Councilman Sedon stated that this was similar to the pods, and perhaps something similar could be done with dumpsters. Councilwoman Knudsen stated that when someone has a permit for construction, you don’t need a permit to get a dumpster, so if they needed to get one it could mirror what the pod was. Mr. Rogers stated that there could be a difference in how they are utilized. He added that when talking about pods they talked about location, duration, a permit, an extension on the permit, size, and aesthetics. Councilwoman Knudsen stated that it might not prevent someone from having it on their front lawn for four months but at least there would be some regulations. Mr. Rogers stated that if somebody has it there for a long period of time, there should be a limited timeframe that they could keep it there, otherwise they’d have to come in for an extension and would there be a fee for that.
Mr. Yotka stated that they may not have the same latitude that they have with the pods because those are delivered in a way that they are easy to maneuver, while a dumpster would be along the sidewalk line. Councilman Sedon stated that to have a standard where the driveway is the standard but if someone could provide reasoning as to why that wouldn’t work then perhaps there was a checkoff box on the permit that it allowed to be off the permitted area on the driveway for a reason. Ms. Jeffery stated that when a dumpster is actively being used, if it is overflowing she makes them change out the dumpster, to try to keep it neat. Councilman Voigt asked if they would get a fine for not replacing the dumpster. Ms. Jeffery added that she could write a summons if she had to.
Councilwoman Knudsen added that it should apply to dumpsters that are trucked in, but the bags from Home Depot wouldn’t apply here. Ms. Jeffery added that those were a much smaller volume. Mayor Hache asked if it was a minimum size. Ms. Jeffery stated that it could be defined in the ordinance. Ms. Mailander stated that Mr. Yotka would talk to his colleagues in other towns to see if they have regulations regarding dumpsters on private property in other towns, and it would be brought back to the Council at the end of January or beginning of February.
- Confirm Endorsement of Application for Community Development Block Grant – Care Plus NJ, Inc.
Ms. Mailander stated that Care Plus NJ has a group home on Van Emburgh Avenue and they are looking for funding through the Community Development Block Grant at their current residence. This does not obligate the funds from the Village, and this will provide safe and reliable transportation assistance to their residents for medical appointments, recreational visits, family visits. It also frees up the staff because currently the staff is doing a lot of driving that takes them away from the others in the home. This way they will have more time in the home and allow the residents to be picked up.
- Place to Place Liquor License Transfer – 54 East Ridgewood Landmark
Ms. Mailander stated that in November a person to person transfer of the liquor license was approved for Felina. At that time, it was approved so they are free and clear to serve liquor. This restaurant decided they wanted to serve liquor on all floors, and the previous restaurant did not have liquor on those different levels. So, in order for them to expand what the previous restaurant had, they have to expand their license premise to all the floors and the roof. The Police Department has looked at it and has seen where the liquor is going to be served and stored and sent Ms. Mailander a memo that they approve of that. The Village Council is the ultimate licensing authority which will now allow them to serve liquor on all of the floors.
Councilwoman Walsh asked what the safety issues are with the roof deck with alcohol. Ms. Mailander stated that the Building Department and she was sure the Health Department would also have concerns regarding food, and that would all be addressed through those various Departments, at the time.
- Approve Shared Services Agreement – Bergen County Police Chiefs Association Mutual Aid Plan and Rapid Deployment Force
Ms. Mailander stated that this is an annual resolution for a Mutual Aid Plan that every municipality in Bergen County adopts, that if there were an emergency in any town, this allows other towns to go in and help during an emergency.
Councilman Voigt pointed out that there was a spelling error on the resolution.
- REVIEW OF JANUARY 16, 2019 PUBLIC MEETING AGENDA
Ms. Mailander stated that this was a review of the January 16, 2019 Public Meeting Agenda.
Proclamations include: Jamboree Days.
Resolution for Ridgewood Water: Award Contract – Eastside Reservoir Improvements; Title 59 Approval – Landscaping Services; Award Contract – Landscaping Design Services; Title 59 Approval – Line Stop and Valve Insertion; Award Contract – Line Stop and Valve Insertion; Title 59 Approval – Servicing and Repair of Electric Source; Award Contract – Servicing and Repair of Electric Source; Award Contract – Water Billing and Data Collection Services; Title 59 Approval – Furnishing and Delivering Sodium Hypochlorite Solution; Award Contract – Furnishing and Delivering Sodium Hypochlorite Solution; Title 59 Approval – Servicing and Repair of Potable Water Pumping Facilities; Award Contract – Servicing and Repair of Potable Water Pumping Facilities; Award Professional Services Contract – Per- and Poly-Fluoroalkyl Substances Planning and Treatment Study; and Award Contract – Asbestos Abatement and Boiler Replacement – Glen Avenue.
The following ordinances are scheduled for introduction: 3698 – Bond Ordinance – Street Paving and Streetscape, Purchase of Senior Bus; 3699 – Amend Chapter 265 – Vehicles and Traffic – Parking at Train Station Lot after 6:00 P.M.; 3700 – Amend Chapter 156 – Food and Food Handling Establishments – Outdoor Café Regulations; 3701 – Amend Chapter 133 – Regulations for Dumpsters on Private Property; and 3702 – Amend Chapter 265 – Vehicles and Traffic – Ridgewood Premium Parking Permit for Hudson Street Parking Lot and Use of Rideshare Arrangement.
Ordinances for Public Hearing include: 3694 – Amend Chapter 145 Fees – Adopt a Tree and Memorial Benches; 3695 – Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Establish Regulations for Temporary Storage Containers; 3696 – Amend Chapter 145 – Fees – Fees for Temporary Storage Containers; and 3697 – Amend Chapter 145 – Fees – Graydon Pool Membership Fees.
Ordinance for Continued Public Hearing includes: 3688 – Amend Chapter 145 – Fees – Graydon Pool Membership Fees and Tennis Membership Fees.
Resolutions include: Authorize Tax Assessor/Tax Collector to File Appeals and/or Settlement Stipulations; Award Contract – Landfill Disposal of Solid Waste; Award Contract – 2019 Recreation Program Instruction; Approve Shared Services Agreement – School Resource Officer; Approve Shared Services Agreement – Bergen County Police Chiefs Association Mutual Aid Plan and Rapid Deployment Force; Declare Property Surplus – Parks Department Logs; Declare Property Surplus – Various Vehicles; Authorize Temporary Capital Budget; Certify Compliance with Federal Civil Rights Requirements; Authorize Release of Escrow Funds – 143 & 147 West Glen Avenue; Endorse Application for Community Development Block Grant – Care Plus, NJ Inc. – Resident Transportation; and Approve Place to Place Transfer of Liquor License – 54 East Ridgewood Landmark, LLC – Expansion of Licensed Premises.
- COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC
Elle Gruber, 229 South Irving Street, stated that she was noticing in the presentation that one of the most egregious walls in town is the one in front of ‘It’s Greek to Me.’ She bangs her car door on that wall and it is the only solid wall in town. She didn’t understand why it isn’t mentioned in any of the presentations as it is very hard to park there.
Ms. Gruber added that years ago, when they improved the downtown, they made the low brick walls around the shade trees that people bang their doors on. She added that the Shade Tree Commission was going to make a presentation to get rid of them, but it seems it is a bothersome thing in a busy area of Ridgewood Avenue and she felt it should be looked at.
Anne Loving, 342 South Irving Street, stated that she was delighted that the Board of Education has agreed to share the cost of the School Resource Officer as she believes that the Mayor and Deputy Mayor are to thank for negotiating back the agreement. Ms. Loving added there are so many new trees planted in town, and she knows Councilman Sedon is largely responsible for that and she really appreciated it. She stated that Mr. Dani asked a question about the calendar, and she believes the Village Manager said notification is sent out to previous advertisers and all businesses having the opportunity to place an ad on the coming year’s calendar. She asked what all businesses means, such as having to be a Chamber member. She stated maybe that should be looked at for next year, so people are fairly notified of the opportunity to advertise whatever they want.
Marcia Ringel, 250 Ferris Place, stated that it sounded like there was a number that was given for the Non-Resident Guests of Graydon Pool, however they haven’t been allowed and this was the first year. She added that Ms. Bigos stated there hadn’t been Non-Member Guests allowed in the past. Ms. Mailander stated she said if they were to charge, it would be $5 more, and the $5 difference for those guest passes would be the $4,928. Ms. Ringel asked where that number came from for Non-Resident Guests if they hadn’t been allowed to do it before. Ms. Mailander stated they had been purchased in 2018. Ms. Ringel stated that she thinks there were a lot of rules at Graydon that have been ignored for years. Ms. Mailander stated she would check into it further. Ms. Ringel stated we are great at making rules, but how good are we at following them and making sure the badge office staff obeys them. She thinks that follow up and supervision needs to be pumped up.
Ms. Ringel stated that when printing the coupon books, they have the opportunity to do whatever they want in the books. In the past, they had a space for the name, age, address, and phone number of every guest, which to be filled in before they got their wristband. She added that it was a safety issue, and additionally it would be useful to print on the cover of the book whatever the rules are, as it was a good opportunity to get them in front of people.
Ms. Ringel stated that regarding the barriers downtown, she thinks it is wonderful that a program is being pursued in detail as it has become a problem. She stated that Mr. Rogers mentioned safety versus aesthetic when making determinations, but she also thinks the tone is important, such as having any ad approved by the Historic Preservation Commission. She added that the suitability should be reviewed, and to say they are removable is a good idea, but a movable barrier might blow away. Would they stipulate that it has to be held down by some amount of force so that it won’t get knocked over or blown away and become a safety hazard. Ms. Ringel stated if a new ordinance is written it should say there is no grandfathering; that these new rules will apply to everyone present and future.
Rurik Halaby, 374 Evergreen Place, stated he would like Mayor Hache to take $25,000 to improve the sound system as it is very difficult to hear in the back. Regarding the website, he agrees with Ms. Mailander that it has improved, but we have to do more than just improve it, and bring in an outside professional website developer to start one from scratch.
Mr. Halaby stated that regarding the outdoor seating, he was impressed by the presentation, but he thought the Village Council should stop talking about passing more ordinances telling people what to do and how to do it. He stated as long as they have clearance, and safety, let people do it. He added they should let the business expand and come up with different things on their own. Mr. Halaby stated that regarding dumpsters, there was a house that was redone in his neighborhood, but it took forever to get a dumpster and there was junk all over the place. He begged the Village Council to concentrate on what to do about parking in the Village, and what is good for the Village long term.
Boyd Loving, 342 South Irving Street, stated regarding the proposed sidewalk café requirements, the three foot height requirements were a good idea, but he asked that the Village adhere to the same height requirements with respect to the plants that are provided by Project Pride. He added there was a plant by the Post Office that was over five feet high, and he received a response that it would be looked into, but that plant was never cut down.
Mr. Loving stated that when the Village Council was talking about the fees for the sidewalk cafes, he got to thinking they were charging taxpayers more to park their cars than for businesses to do something to increase the volume of their business. He asked that the fees be looked at again, as he thinks they are on the cheap side as they were charging 40% to 50% less than they were charging for people to park their cars.
Mr. Loving also echoed Ms. Ringel’s comments, stating that on a document that the Village Council had before them it says that Non-Resident Guest Passes were not allowed last year, so he doesn’t know how Ms. Mailander has a number that 985 were sold as they weren’t allowed according to the ordinance. He added that the number equates to between ten and twelve each day of the week. He finds it difficult to believe that there were Non-Resident Members that were bringing that number of guests each day of the week. He stated that he felt that number was the total number of Guest Passes sold, not Guest Passes sold to Non-Resident Members. Mr. Loving asked that those figures be checked because according to the ordinance it wasn’t permitted.
There were no additional public comments.
Mayor Hache stated that some of the barriers that have been allowed are a problem and it has grown out of control. There is time now to improve the safety of the downtown, and having the proper clearance and right of way for people to walk and get through. He added that people should be able to exit their vehicle without damaging their cars or having to get out into a busy street. He wanted to make sure they were equally applying the regulations to everyone.
Mayor Hache stated that opening up the advertising to all businesses in town would be a great idea, because right now they aren’t targeting Chamber or Guild members, but would think of a better way to open it up next year.
Mayor Hache added that they would check the numbers regarding Non-Resident Guest Passes.
Mayor Hache stated that regarding the coupon books having the guest information on the back of a coupon, now if you purchase a guest pass you will fill out a lot of information. He would imagine that same information would be required with the coupon to have for safety reasons but also for a registry of who is at the pool.
Mayor Hache added that regarding the sound system, they were looking at various items. Ms. Mailander stated she believed they were at the point of ordering sound equipment and were also working on the cameras. That install won’t happen until late February or early March, but if they can do the audio sooner, they will.
- RESOLUTION TO GO INTO CLOSED SESSION
Deputy Village Clerk, Donna Jackson read Resolution #19-01 to go into Closed Session as follows:
There being no further business to come before the Village Council, on a motion by Councilwoman Knudsen, seconded by Councilman Sedon, and carried unanimously by voice vote, the Village Council’s Work Session was adjourned at 9:58 P.M.
Ramon M. Hache, Sr.
Donna M. Jackson
Deputy Village Clerk
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