Editor's Notebook: May 9 Borough Council Meeting
The borough council passed the 2013 salary resolution, announced grant funding, discussed traffic and deer problems and reported the new borough website will be up soon at its May 9 meeting.
The 2013 Borough Employee Salaries resolution includes 2% raises for most salaries, although some positions and titles have shifted. The Finance Department went from a two-person team with a part-time Chief Financial Officer/Treasurer position at $15,000 with a Financial Assistant at $46,920 in 2012 to a team of one CFO at $51,934.83 after the assistant completed her certification and took over the CFO position full time in January. The salary for Recreation Coordinator, which was a part time position in 2012, is reflected as a range from $25,000 to $55,000 to reflect a possible position increase to full time in 2013.
Borough Administrator Adeline Hanna reported grant monies promised and received. The borough will be getting approximately $33,000 for a Community Development Grant for ADA compliant bathrooms at Borough Hall. The Department of Transportation has promised $150,000 for roadwork on Highwood and Spruce.
For Superstorm Sandy, the borough received $11,700 reimbursement for brush removal and will be reimbursed $65,915.27 for police and DPW labor and equipment costs.
Mayor Budd O'Hagan announced the borough has been promised a Clean Communities Grant for $13,500.
Emergency Road Work
Mayor O'Hagan reported that a sinkhole opened the roadway at Erie near Godwin Avenue on Wednesday. A contractor was brought in to investigate and estimates the cost to repair will be between $38,000 and $50,000. The council will need to use an emergency appropriation to fund the unanticipated expenditure.
A Franklin Avenue resident reported a problem with cars and trucks speeding on her street. She noted that people are driving 40 to 50 mph in the 25 mph zone. In addition, the road was repaved and lined recently, and instead of the line being off center to accommodate parking on one side of the street as it previously was, it was painted down the center.
The borough's website has undergone a much-needed redesign and is expected to relaunch on Monday with a new URL. Officials said webmaster Tom Carlock, who is a borough resident, intends to update the site weekly. For a sneak peek at the redesign, visit www.midlandparknj.org.
As a follow-up to the last meeting, where a resident complained of deer destroying landscaping, Hanna reported she spoke with Tyco Animal Control and was informed that Tyco isn't allowed to do anything about the deer problem. By law, Bergen County forbids the culling of the deer population through hunting, injection with birth control or any other method. Bergen County is the only county in New Jersey where culling is not allow.
In addition, Mayor O'Hagan said that he discussed the deer problem with other mayors and many communities have the same problem, yet no communities have a solution. The abundance of deer in the area is not only a traffic hazard, deer also carry ticks associated with Lyme Disease.
The council intends to petition state representatives and the NJ Department of Wildlife, Fish & Game to ask for assistance in dealing with the deer problem.
A Godwin Avenue resident requested the borough place a port-a-john at Wortendyke Park on a temporary basis. The resident noted she walks to the park frequently and if she needs to use the restroom, there is no place to use now that Pete's Corner has closed. In addition to the many young families that use the park on a daily basis, the Boy Scouts will be holding their annual end of the year picnic on June 14 at the Park.