20210811 - Village Council Regular Public Meeting Minutes

A REGULAR PUBLIC MEETING 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, RIDGEWOOD, NEW JERSEY ON AUGUST 11, 2021 AT 8:00 P.M.

 

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

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon called the meeting to order at 8:00 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; 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 First Responders and our military personnel.

 

  1. ACCEPTANCE OF FINANCIAL REPORTS

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon moved that the Bills, Claims, and Vouchers, and Statement of Funds on Hand as of July 31, 2021, be accepted as submitted.  Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that as to the bills from the Village Attorney, she approves.  As to the other bills for the month of July, she registered her objection to the bills from McManaman, Scottland, and Bowman for their work on appeal for the One Village, One Vote lawsuit.  They did incur those bills however, and therefore she has to approve.

 

  1. APPROVAL OF MINUTES

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon moved that the Village Council minutes of February 9, February 17, February 22, March 3, March 8, April 7, April 28, May 5, May 12, May 26, June 2, June 9, and July 14, 2021 having been reviewed by the Village Council and now available in the Village Clerk’s Office, be approved as submitted.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. PROCLAMATIONS

 

  1. DECLARE SEPTEMBER OVARIAN CANCER AWARENESS MONTH

 

Councilwoman Perron read the following proclamation:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. DECLARE SEPTEMBER NATIONAL PREPAREDNESS MONTH

 

Councilwoman Reynolds read the following proclamation:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

Joan Ficke, 396 West End Avenue, stated that she wrote to the Mayor in June and had opportunity to have conversations with her and Mr. Rooney, she also wrote a letter to the Bergen Record and the Ridgewood News regarding real estate tax increases.  She asked that there be some form of communication and transparency between the Village residents and the Village Council regarding tax increases.  She accessed the budget herself, so she does have an idea of what it looks like.  The second issue was the utility of using those persons who reside in the Village who have personal and professional expertise in financial areas that would be useful in the preparation of the budget and other financial matters. 

 

Carolyn Jacoby, 160 Godwin Avenue, stated that she wanted to thank Ms. Mailander on behalf of the Ridgewood Shade Tree Commission for sending out the E-Notice today about the Emerald Ash Borer.  She looks forward to working with the Village Council in planning how they are going to respond to trees and climate change.

 

Ms. Jacoby stated that as a member of the League of Women Voters of Ridgewood, she was here to restate a letter that was sent July 6th to the Village Council regarding the reinstating of remote access to the Village Council meetings.  She read the text of the letter, pointing out that there was increased participation from the public, when the meetings moved to remote access.

 

Councilwoman Perron stated that she appreciated the League of Women Voters’ interest in reinstating remote public comment, and she knows in speaking with the Village Manager that she is working on that.  She urged that if the remote public comment wasn’t up and running by September 1st, she asked to reinstate the email comments, as they allowed when the Village Council meetings were held on Zoom. 

 

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

 

  1. MANAGER’S REPORT

 

“You Call the Shots” Back to School Vaccination Event – Heather Mailander, Village Manager/Village Clerk, stated that on August 19th and September 9th from 6:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M. there will be a COVID-19 vaccination event at the Graydon Pool Parking Lot, which will be open to all ages.  Appointments are encouraged, but not required.  Participants ages 12 to 17 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to receive the vaccine.  If it is raining, the event will be held in the Patrick A. Mancuso Senior Center.

 

Welcome to Ridgewood, New Jersey – Ms. Mailander stated that the Welcome to Ridgewood, New Jersey Event will be held from now until September 5th, all day Saturday through 10:00 P.M. on Sunday.  The Central Business District from Broad Street to Walnut Street is closed to vehicular traffic and it becomes a pedestrian plaza.  There will be performances on Saturday and Sunday in various locations of the pedestrian plaza.  There will be another Touch a Truck event on August 21st, from noon to 3:00 P.M.  Look for Dorothy’s ruby slippers in a store and eatery and register for a prize.

 

Music in the Night – Ms. Mailander stated that Music in the Night is sponsored by the Ridgewood Guild.  Musical performances are held in various locations throughout the CBD on Friday nights, now through September.

 

Graydon Pool – Ms. Mailander stated that Graydon Pool is open for family, individual, senior citizen, or daily badges.  Details of the pool hours and fees are posted on the Ridgewood Recreation website.  Graydon Pool is looking for lifeguards with a waterfront certification.

 

Ms. Mailander stated that due to the lack of lifeguards, Graydon Pool will be closed on August 24th, and August 30th through September 3rd.  In addition, certain sections of Graydon Pool will be closed every day, depending on the number of lifeguards on duty.

 

Ridgewood Farmers Market – Ms. Mailander stated that the Ridgewood Farmers Market, which is organized by the Chamber of Commerce is open on Sundays from 8:30 A.M. to 2:00 P.M. and is located in the Ridgewood Train Station Parking Lot.

 

Ridgewood Guild Movies – Ms. Mailander stated they are complimentary movies sponsored by the Ridgewood Guild in Memorial Park at Van Neste Square.  The last movie of the season, Tootsie, will be held on Wednesday, August 25th at 9:00 P.M.

 

Ridgewood Recreation – Ms. Mailander stated that Ridgewood Recreation offers a wide variety of programs mid to late August.  Details and fees are posted on the Recreation website.

 

September 11th 20-Year Commemorative Ceremony – Ms. Mailander stated that the September 11th 20-year Commemorative Ceremony will be held at 11:30 A.M. in Memorial Park at Van Neste Square to remember the 12 Ridgewood residents who were lost on that fateful day.   Twenty years later, those residents are still on our hearts and they will never be forgotten.  In addition, portraits of the 12 residents will be on display in the public library auditorium for the month of September.

 

Parking – Ms. Mailander stated that overnight parking in the Central Business District is open to all Ridgewood residents through December 31st in the Hudson Street Garage Second Floor, Prospect Street Lot, Cottage Place Lot, and the Wilsey Square Lot.  Overnight parking is from 8:00 A.M. to 8:00 P.M.  The cost is $75 for three months or $150 for six months.  If a resident has family or friends from out of town who wish to take the train from Ridgewood, Ridgewood Parking Permits for commuters are available for non-residents, for the same price as residents.  CBD employees can park on the entire fourth floor of the Hudson Street Garage with CBD employee stickers.  Non-premium parking permit holders may park on the third floor.  24 hour parking spaces are available to all Ridgewood residents in the Train Station lot and the Cottage Place Lot through December 31st, the price is $325 per vehicle, which will be prorated, based on the month of purchase.

 

Upcoming Meetings – Ms. Mailander stated that the next Village Council meetings are: September 1st is a Village Council Public Work Session, September 8th is a Village Council Public Meeting, September 22nd is a Village Council Public Work Session, and October 6th is a Village Council Public Work Session. All Public Work Session meetings begin at 7:30 p.m. and all Public Meetings begin at 8:00 p.m.

 

  1. VILLAGE COUNCIL REPORTS

 

Green Ridgewood – Councilwoman Perron stated that Green Ridgewood met last week, the suggestion came up that on the website where there is a tile regarding employment, perhaps they could change it to state, employment and volunteer opportunities.  Regarding Renewable Government Energy Aggregation, the subcommittee went to the Farmers Market and were speaking to people about the project, and have renamed it Encouraging Alternate Green Energy in Ridgewood (EAGER). 

 

Chamber of Commerce – Councilwoman Perron stated that the Chamber of Commerce met this morning, and the main topic of discussion was the Hudson Street Garage.  They talked about a business card that could be given to restaurant patrons with their check, which would give the address of the Hudson Street Garage.  They also talked about how to publicize the location of the Hudson Street Garage on social media.  They discussed the proposal from Tim Haahs Associates about publicizing the garage through wayfinding signs, and they suggested that $11,000 is not a lot of money to spend to advertise the garage.  One suggestion concerning signage was for people who are driving under the train trestle and up Broad Street, it would be a good idea to have a banner on the garage building, to give people an idea of where the building is located.  The Pedestrian Plaza could also use more advertising.  They also spoke about the purchase of The Town Garage property on Franklin Avenue, and the merchants were not in favor of this idea.

 

Graydon Pool – Councilwoman Walsh stated reminded all Ridgewood residents that they can purchase a day pass at Graydon Pool.

 

American Legion – Councilwoman Walsh stated the American Legion is working on the Hometown Heroes Banners.

 

Ridgewood Green Team – Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that the Green Team met last week and are continuing to go through the edits and revisions necessary to recertify at a silver level with Sustainable Jersey.

 

Ridgewood Arts Council – Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that the Ridgewood Arts Council is working on putting together an event in the Central Business District on October 2nd.  It is going to be a Beatles-themed art fair.

 

Shade Tree Commission – Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that Shade Tree Commission met last night and there was a discussion about budgeting and the ash tree removals, due to the Emerald Ash Borer.  They are putting together a budget proposal of $500,000 for planting new trees, to be presented to the Village Manager, the Chief Financial Officer, and the Director of Parks and Recreation.

 

 

 

  1. Update on Ridgewood Water PFAS Contamination

 

Richard Calbi, Director of Village Water, stated that he wanted to give an update on the groundwater PFAS contamination and a Notice of Violation that Ridgewood Water received from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) on August 3rd.  The notice is regarding exceedance of the new maximum contaminant level that has been set by NJDEP for PFOA.  This is not an emergency, as the exceedance is based on a running annual average of four quarter results taken by the Utility.  Based on the third quarter results, thirteen treatment plants will exceed the maximum contaminant level, regardless of what the fourth quarter result is.  They anticipate that another eight plants will exceed the maximum contaminant level, once the fourth quarter sample is taken. 

 

Mr. Calbi stated that the notice requires that the Utility send out a Tier II Non-Emergency Public Notice to all consumers in the utility.  That public notice has to be postmarked by August 22nd.  In addition to the notice, they have to submit a Remedial Measures Plan detailing proposed remediation by September 2nd.  In compliance with the notice, treatment must be installed by July 23, 2022.  They are likely to enter into some type of consent order with the NJDEP in order to expand the timeline. 

 

Mr. Calbi stated that they try to limit the amount of PFAS going out to consumers, with wells that have the highest concentrations they send out the least amount water.  The public notice will have a summary outlining what the Ridgewood Water Utility is doing with regard to the notice and PFOA in the water, it will have information and resources, tell the consumer what the notice means, what they should do, and what is being done by Ridgewood Water.  He read the Master Plan regarding PFAS.

 

Councilwoman Perron asked if other municipal water departments were in a similar situation.  Mr. Calbi stated that PFAS is prevalent in most of New Jersey and most of the Nation.  Councilwoman Perron thanked Ridgewood Water for all of the work they have done on this.

 

  1. ORDINANCES – RIDGEWOOD WATER

 

  1. INTRODUCTION – NONE

 

  1. PUBLIC HEARING - NONE

 

  1. RESOLUTIONS – RIDGEWOOD WATER – NONE

 

  1. ORDINANCES 

 

  1. INTRODUCTION - #3869 – Amend Firefighters and Fire Superior Officers Salary Ordinance

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon moved the first reading of ordinance 3869.  Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3869 by title:

 

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND SALARY ORDINANCE 3835, ADOPTED ON FEBRUARY 10, 2021, TO FIX SALARIES, WAGES AND OTHER COMPENSATION OF AND FOR FIREFIGHTERS AND FIRE SUPERIOR OFFICERS OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD, COUNTY OF BERGEN, AND STATE OF NEW JERSEY

 

Councilwoman Reynolds moved that ordinance 3869 be adopted on first reading and that September 8, 2021 be fixed as the date for the hearing thereon.  Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion. 

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. INTRODUCTION - #3870 – Amend Chapter 265 – Vehicles and Traffic – Motorcycle Parking at Hudson Street Garage

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon moved the first reading of ordinance 3870.  Councilwoman Perron seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3870 by title:

 

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND CHAPTER 265 OF THE CODE OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD, VEHICLES AND TRAFFIC, AT SECTION 265-33, “PERMIT PARKING”

 

Councilwoman Walsh moved that ordinance 3870 be adopted on first reading and that September 8, 2021 be fixed as the date for the hearing thereon.  Councilwoman Perron seconded the motion. 

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. INTRODUCTION - #3871 – Amend Chapter 145 – Fees – Ridgewood Parking Permit Motorcycle Parking

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon moved the first reading of ordinance 3871.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3871 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”

 

Councilwoman Perron moved that ordinance 3871 be adopted on first reading and that September 8, 2021 be fixed as the date for the hearing thereon.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion. 

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. INTRODUCTION - #3872 – Authorization of Eminent Domain – Block 3806,

Lot 2

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon moved the first reading of ordinance 3872.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion.

 

Councilwoman Walsh recused herself from the vote.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, and Sedon

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

RECUSE:       Councilwoman Walsh

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3872 by title:

 

AN ORDINANCE AUTHORIZING THE ACQUISITION OF CERTAIN REAL PROPERTY WITHIN THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD

 

Councilwoman Perron moved that ordinance 3872 be adopted on first reading and that September 8, 2021 be fixed as the date for the hearing thereon.  Councilwoman Reynolds seconded the motion. 

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, and Sedon

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

RECUSE:        Councilwoman Walsh

 

  1. PUBLIC HEARING - #3868 – Amend Chapter 265 – Vehicles and Traffic – Establish Stop Signs – Hanks Avenue and Gordon Road at Brookside Avenue

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon moved the reading of ordinance 3868 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, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

The Village Clerk read ordinance 3868 by title:

 

AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND CHAPTER 265 OF THE CODE OF THE VILLAGE OF RIDGEWOOD, VEHICLES AND TRAFFIC, AT SECTION 265-59, SCHEDULE IX: “STOP INTERSECTIONS”

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that the Public Hearing was opened.  There were no comments from the public and Deputy Mayor Sedon moved that the Public Hearing be closed.  Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion.

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

Councilwoman Perron moved that ordinance 3868 be adopted on second reading and final publication as required by law.  Councilwoman Walsh seconded the motion. 

 

Roll Call Vote

 

AYES:            Councilmembers Perron, Reynolds, Sedon, and Walsh

NAYS:            None

ABSENT:       Mayor Knudsen

ABSTAIN:      None

 

  1. RESOLUTIONS

 

THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTIONS, NUMBERED 21-244 THROUGH 21-262, WERE ADOPTED BY A CONSENT AGENDA WITH ONE VOTE BY THE VILLAGE COUNCIL, AND WERE READ BY TITLE ONLY:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC

 

Carolyn Jacoby, 160 Godwin Avenue, stated that she wanted to thank Councilwoman Reynolds for her response with what was happening with Project Pride.  She thanked Deputy Mayor Sedon for all of his support with the Ridgewood Shade Tree Commission.  She thanked Councilwoman Perron for her support and Councilwoman Walsh for her years of service.  The Ridgewood Shade Tree Commission is working on a proposal for a test of eight tree wells in the CBD.  She stated that a letter and the ordinance requiring landlords to take care of the tree wells on their properties, should be sent to the landlords to encourage them to comply.

 

There were no additional comments from the Public and Deputy Mayor Sedon closed public comment. 

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon stated that he was informed by the Village Manager that a letter has already gone out to landlords to let them know about their responsibility for the tree wells and there is a meeting with the landlords being scheduled to discuss this, as well as other matters of mutual interest. 

 

Councilwoman Perron state that they know that landlords are listening because a letter was received back from at least one of them.

 

Councilwoman Walsh read a statement that said it was with deep regret that she must resign her Council position, effective at the closing of this evening’s meeting, because her husband is being transferred out of State, and while they will remain taxpayers in Ridgewood, they will no longer be considered legal residents.  She emphasized that she has cherished her time on the Village Council and is saddened that she needs to leave her term early.  She is confident a Village resident will step forward to fill her unexpired term and will serve Ridgewood well. 

 

After reviewing New Jersey law with regard to Municipal Council vacancies, specifically NJSA 40A:16-3, and NJSA 40A:16-5, she must submit her written resignation this evening and vacate the position in order for potential Council candidates to file petitions to be on the November 2, 2021 General Election ballot to fill her unexpired term.  She remains committed to Ridgewood and the causes near and dear to her family, she wishes everyone well, her Council colleagues, Heather Mailander, Matt Rogers, and the entire Village staff.

 

Deputy Mayor Sedon thanked Councilwoman Walsh for her service with distinction and honor, adding that she would be missed and it was an honor to serve with her.  Councilwoman Reynolds thanked her for all of her years of service, and wished her and her family well.  Councilwoman Perron echoed those sentiments, adding that since 2010, Councilwoman Walsh has served the Village on various Boards and Committees and has worked closely with the Veterans.  Councilwoman Perron thanked Councilwoman Walsh for taking her under her wing.  Mr. Rogers stated that he would miss Councilwoman Walsh on the Village Council, as her perspective was very unique and she came forth with that fearlessly, for the benefit of the Village.  Ms. Mailander stated that she has known Councilwoman Walsh for a long time, and the thing about Councilwoman Walsh is she has always voted for what she thought was best for the Village and its residents and Ms. Mailander appreciates that, she will miss that, and wished Councilwoman Walsh luck in the next chapter of her life.

 

  1.         ADJOURNMENT

 

There being no further business to come before the Village Council, on a motion by Councilwoman Perron, seconded by Councilwoman Reynolds, and carried unanimously by voice vote, the Village Council’s Regular Public Meeting was adjourned at 8:55 P.M.

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________

                                                                                                    Michael Sedon                               

                                                                                                                 Deputy Mayor                                

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________

              Heather A. Mailander

      Village Manager/Village Clerk

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