February 15, 2024 Regular Meeting

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February 15, 2024

Regular Meeting


MEMBERS PRESENT: Mr. Branagan, Ms. Coriston, Mrs. Emmetts (via Zoom), Mrs. Tracey, Mr. Dvorsky

MEMBERS ABSENT: Dr. Mattes, Mr. Szabo, Ms. Wills

Ms. Coriston called the meeting to order at 7:06 p.m. with the statement that this meeting is in compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act. This was a regular meeting of the Stillwater Township Environmental Commission, Regular meetings are held on the second Monday of the month at 7:00 p.m., at the Stillwater Township Municipal Building located in Middleville, New Jersey unless noticed or it is a legal holiday.

The flag was saluted and roll call taken.


Mr. Branagan made a motion to approve the minutes of 1/8/24, seconded by Mrs. Tracey.

Roll Call Vote: Mr. Branagan, yes Mrs. Emmetts, yes, Mrs. Tracey, yes, Mr. Dvorsky, abstain,

Ms. Coriston, yes



Mrs. Emmetts made a motion to approve the following bills, pending availability of funds, seconded by Ms. Coriston:

Secretary: $255.00

Roll Call Vote: Mr. Branagan, yes Mrs. Emmetts, yes, Mrs. Tracey, yes, Mr. Dvorsky, yes,

Ms. Coriston, yes

At this point, this portion of the meeting was opened to the public at 7:09 p.m.

There being no public present, this portion of the meeting was closed at 7:09 p.m.


-Ed Szabo -1/17/24: Photo (email) bobcat/deer Lake Lenape section of Andover

-SC Open Space Committee (OSC) Minutes – September 28, 2023 – Mayor Chammings reported on the OSC minutes stating Autumn Sylvester is overseeing the Committee. Ms. Sylvester will be working on the Farmland Preservation update, and she provided an overview of the Committee’s plans moving forward.

Old Business

ANJEC draft letter review – Mr. Szabo:

Due to Mr. Szabo’s absence this item will be tabled until the March 11, 2024, EC meeting.

TREX Program Update:

Ms. Coriston reported 283 pounds have been collected to date. The Municipal Building receptacle has been very successful, and she empties it 1-2 times per week. There has been a garbage issue with the Recycling Center collection and the students have been sorting it. She reported on the school’s Sustainable Jersey bronze certification and the Citizenship Science grant.

Stream Water Study Subcommittee:

Mr. Branagan and Mr. Dvorsky met with Mr. Lippencott. Mr. Dvorsky reported that Mr. Lippencott discovered the names of the streams included in the EC study differ from the names the State has listed for their testing. Mr. Dvorsky noted Mr. Lippencott will revise the names and update them on the

analysis. The State and the EC have some testing sites in common and this may need to be adjusted. C-1 waters were discussed and what is permitted in the area around those waters. Mr. Dvorsky asked if there would be overlapping with the MS4 Stormwater Management. Mayor Chammings stated it will overlap only if there is direct effluent into a stream that is on our testing list.

Mr. Dvorsky stated the key area for C-1 waters is near farmland. Mr. Lippencott has mentioned a capture process to address the issue. Mr. Branagan will follow-up with ANJEC on grant funding to do so.

Animal waste management was briefly discussed. Mr. Dvorksy stated it was his understanding that the owner of the farm mentioned in the past was not interested. Mr. Branagan noted there is the same issue with another farm owner. Mayor Chammings stated the two situations differ in that cows reside waterside vs. cows are in the water. Mayor Chammings stated she would email the information on animal waste management and options provided by Christine Dunbar to the EC for their review.

Collection of water and having it tested immediately was also discussed. Labs sometimes receive the samples days later and findings are inaccurate. Temperature and dissolved oxygen (DO) are two items that are affected.

Mr. Lippencott arrived at the meeting and reported further on the subcommittee meeting. He stated the State’s website is full of information and he is interested to see how the State and EC common testing sites coincide. He has a graduate student assisting him with the analysis and completion of the report. Recommendations are written and will have to be discussed and deliberated on by the EC. He discussed land use and water quality connection and found it interesting when looking at municipality size, population and underdeveloped vs. developed and industrial vs. agricultural.

The EC discussed equipment use in future testing and Mrs. Emmetts stated the Swartswood Lakes Association has offered their DO meter, which is recalibrated annually by Larry Kovar. Mr. Lippencott stated equipment may be available through his office to measure ph. He also spoke about meters used for conductivity and total dissolved solids. Mrs. Emmetts stated the lakes association is doing a lake management plan in conjunction with Dr. Obrupta (Rutgers) and it will be interesting to see the results. She noted grant funding has slowed and they are hoping that once the NJDEP approves the plan, grant funding will improve. Mr. Lippencott stated some collection parameters must be tested within 15 minutes and temperature fluctuates between sampling and lab testing. Ammonia analysis, which is important for agricultural uses, is done using temperature and ph of water at the time of sampling. Mr. Lippencott will provide recommendations about sampling details in his report including water temperature, dissolved oxygen and ph. He reported the data maintained by the EC has been consistent and the EC may want to consider testing every three to five years as opposed to annually. Based on the record of testing the water quality is very good. He spoke briefly about C-1 waters and the standard of antidegradation policies and quantifying objectives for C-1 water standards. The EC has 40 years of stream water testing data establishing a baseline.

Mr. Dvorsky asked if flora would have an effect on the stream testing. Mr. Lippencott stated his educated guess is it would not as the water is in a moving stream.

Mayor Chammings asked if Mr. Lippencott has any recommendations for a multi-testing meter as it would be beneficial to the EC and also for the stormwater management plan. Mr. Lippencott will look into it and stated rentals may be an option and would eliminate maintenance and cost issues, especially if testing is done less frequently in the future. Mr. Branagan stated testing is scheduled to be conducted in the fall and planning should begin now if a meter is going to be purchased prior to then.

Mr. Lippencott is hoping to have a final report for EC review in the spring.

The EC thanked Mr. Lippencott for his work and time.

Fishing Line Collection:

All lines are to be cleaned of litter/leaves, hooks and lead sinkers. Lead sinkers are to be provided at the meeting for recycling.

New Business

Site Survey:

Mr. Dvorsky and Mr. Brangan conducted a site survey on Block 1703, Lot 12.02, 911 Swartswood Road, Swartswood Deli property, application for the construction of a shed. Their only concern was the location of the shed with respect to the stream (Neldon’s Brook). The location of a grease tank and its close proximity to the stream was also noted on the site survey report.

Volunteer/Member Recognition:

-Mr. Branagan/Mr. Dvorsky for meeting with Mr. Lippencott regarding the stream water analysis report.

-Mr. Branagan/Mr. Dvorsky for conducting the site survey for Block 1703, Lot 12.02

Endangered and Threatened Species: None reported.

At this point, this portion of the meeting was opened to the public at 8:01 p.m.

Mr. Lippencott reported seeing a marten/fisher cross Old Schoolhouse Road.

Mr. Dvorsky briefly discussed the inordinate amount of salt/grit on the roads for the first snowstorm as compared to none for the second storm. Mayor Chammings stated the temperature was very cold during the first storm and much warmer for the second. She also noted there were new employees adjusting to the system for the first storm and they were much improved for the second.

There being no further members of the public present, this portion of the meeting was closed at 8:04 p.m.

Planning Board (PB) Liaison Report: Mayor Chammings

-Karen Puccio was appointed as Chairperson; Bob Pierce as Vice-Chairperson for 2024.

-There was some discussion on the official newspapers for 2024, the board opting for the New Jersey Herald.

-There was also discussion on 992 Fairview Lake Road and demolition of the building vs. not.

Township Liaison Report: Mayor Chammings

Township Committee Meetings: 1/16/24 and 2/6/24

-The new Clerk has been great with providing correspondence to the Committee. A hazardous discharge notice for a home fuel heating tank was received.

-Lake Plymouth and Crandon Lakes were inspected by the NJDEP with a few minor issues including the removal of a beaver dam.

-Discussed a hazardous discharge remediation plan for 992 Fairview Lake Road.

-Vacated two roads for the Fairclough application. (Reversal of subdivision approval and acquisition of the property by the Nature Conservancy)

-Working on a recreation grant for a pickle ball court ($46,000).

-Introduced an ordinance to repair the Crandon Lakes dam, cost under $17,500.

-A used bucket truck will be purchased to mitigate effects of ash borers and resulting dead trees along roadways. DPW employees will be trained to use it.

-Two employees hired at the Recycling Center and are working out well.

-Approved a disabled veteran tax exemption.

-Appointment of Ron Tappan as QPA on an as needed basis.

-Met with ADR Environmental and new Township Attorney Eric Bernstein with respect to 992 Fairview Lake Road. They will meet with the NJDEP in the future to clarify that requirements will be finalized on the project.

Ms. Coriston mentioned the ANJEC grant funding of $1,500 is being offered. Mayor Chammings stated the Open Space and Recreation Plan is due for updating. Barbara Davis of the Land Conservancy will apply for the ANJEC grant to be used toward the cost of $13,500 for the plan update.

With no further business to come before the Commission, Mr. Dvorsky made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 8:23 p.m., seconded by Mr. Branagan. In a voice vote, all were in favor.

Respectfully submitted,


Kathy Wunder, Secretary


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