February 4, 2023
SPECIAL MEETING – Budget
The meeting was called to order at 8:06 a.m. by Mayor Chammings. Mayor Chammings stated adequate notice of this meeting has been provided according to the Open Public Meetings Act, Assembly Bill 1030. noting the meeting date, time and place were duly published in the New Jersey Herald, posted at the Town Hall, official website, Stillwater Facebook page and advised those present that this meeting was being held in compliance with provisions of P.L. 1975, Chapter 231, Sections 4 & 13.
Mayor Chammings led the public in the salute to the American Flag.
Roll Call: PRESENT: Mrs. Delaney, Mrs. Rumsey, Mr. Scott, and Mayor Chammings. Absent: Mr. Barta
Mayor Chammings said this budget meeting will discuss the Stillwater Area Volunteer Fire Department and DPW.
CFO Tammy Leonard said that the fire department was asking for a 3.5% increase in other expenses. This would be an increase of $3,000. Chief Hawkins explained that this increase is mostly due to the cost of everything going up, but also because there is more training taking place.
The Township committee had no further discussion and accepted the 3.5% increase.
CFO Tammy Leonard said the fire department was asking for a 7.1% increase in vehicle maintenance. This would be an increase to $52,500.00 and due to the cost of everything going up.
The Township Committee agreed with the 7.1% increase for vehicle maintenance for the fire department.
Mayor Chammings asked how much was in reserve. CFO Tammy Leonard stated with what is planned to be added this year it will be $140,000.00 in the reserve.
CFO Tammy Leonard said the fire department is asking for 30.3% increase in public health. Chief Hawkins explained this increase is due to wanting to add a gear cleaning line. Chief Hawkins explained that this $2,000.00 would cover a company coming out to the firehouse and cleaning all the gear in one day, annually.
A decision was made on completing background checks on new employees including the new members of the fire department. Mayor Chammings stated that no new fire department members would be approved until their background checks are completed.
The Township Committee agreed to the 30.3% increase in the public health area for the fire department.
CFO Tammy Leonard stated there were no increases requested for LOSAP.
Chief Hawkins said that the Stillwater Area Volunteer Fire Department was awarded a full reimbursement grant of $42,000.00.
Chief Hawkins stated the fire department has put in for five (5) new air packs and six (6) new bottles via a grant for a total of $60,000.00 and should know by May if they have received this grant. CFO Tammy Leonard stated if the grant does not come through she is planning on using ARPA funds to cover the cost of the new air packs and bottles. Fireman Steve Sugar informed the Township Committee that if the packs are bought in bulk (12 or more at a time) the cost goes down per pack significantly. He suggested if the grant does not come through to buy them bulk to cut the cost. Mayor Chammings asked how much was left in the ARPA fund. CFO Tammy Leonard replied with $191,000.00 approximately and $130,000.00 is allotted for the roof of the Community Center. The remainder of the funds are being spent on these packs, if the grant comes through the remainder of the APRA Funds would be available for use on something else by the deadline.
CFO Tammy Leonard suggested to the Fire Department if the grant falls through to plan on doing a bulk purchase next year of the packs.
Mayor Chammings asked about the electrical upgrades for the bays at the Community Center. Mrs. Rumsey stated the quote given was only good for thirty (30) days and would like a yes to move a head with the work. Mayor Chammings asked the clerk to add a resolution to the February 7, 2023 regular township committee meeting to spend the allotted $3,000.00 ARPA Funds on the new lighting for the bays at the Community Center.
CFO Tammy Leonard started with the Streets and Roads budget with a 24.2%, in the amount of $40,000.00 increase for a street sweeper shared service to comply with the transition to Tier A of Storm Water Management. A discussion was had about different shared services with other local surrounding towns about the street sweeper.
Mrs. Rumsey questioned the CDL Testing line at $350.00. Mayor Chammings answered it was the drug testing for the CDL. It was suggested to change the name to reflect it being for drug testing for the CDL. CFO Tammy Leonard will make the change.
Mayor Chammings asked how much was in the storm trust. CFO Tammy Leonard stated there is $250,000.00 in there. The remainder of unused will be added at the end of the year.
CFO Tammy Leonard requested a small increase of $500 under registration and permits.
Mayor Chammings requested a resolution be put on the agenda for the February 7, 2023 meeting accepting the resignation of Paul Hawkins as Recycling Coordinator as of February 5, 2023 and appointing Joe Funari as Recycling Coordinator as of February 6, 2023 at a salary of $19.12 per hour.
There was no change to the groundwater testing.
The Township Committee agreed to the small increase in the registration and permits section and the resolutions for the acceptance of recycling center coordinator and appointment of a new one.
CFO Tammy Leonard said there was a tiny decrease in the buildings and grounds section of the budget. The Township Committee agreed to keep the lawn mowing contract as is for this year.
CFO Tammy Leonard and DPW Supervisor Paul Hawkins informed the committee the increase in the vehicle maintenance section is for routine vehicle maintenance and the 5.75% increase is unavoidable. The Township Committee asked the DPW supervisor to make a list of the equipment that can be gotten rid of and use those funds to construct a lien-to for equipment being left out in the elements.
The capital budget requests from the DPW was discussed and Mayor Chammings suggested renting asphalt hot box instead of looking to purchase. Mr. Hawkins said the hot box is a great all-around tool for many road projects and works with patch to fix potholes easily in the winter. Mayor Chammings asked if Mr. Hawkins thought it was a good investment. Mr. Hawkins feels it is also a potential shared service tool.
An overhang to cover equipment for the back of the DPW building was discussed. Mr. Hawkins will provide a site plan and cost evaluation for the overhang to the governing body.
That concluded the DPW budget requests and the township committee moved on to other Capital requests.
Codification of all changes made during the Code Analysis will cost $8,000.00. This cost covers new hard cover code books for the governing body. The codification will represent a totally updated Stillwater Township code book for 2023.
A new copier was requested for the building department. The cost to purchase a similar machine to the main office machine will cost $2,900.00. The CFO noted it may be funded from the capital improvement fund.
The computer line is up 66.7% from $30,924 to $51,574. The CFO noted it is not all Planet Network expenses. Mrs. Leonard said the Township needs a new server $5,000, a total new tax collection program is required because MSI and Edmunds have merged and the cost is $19,350.
A keyless entry for town hall was discussed. The Clerk will speak to Abcode Security to update the quote for two units for town hall with 25 fobs.
A discussion regarding propane costs was discussed. Mayor Chammings will call Fairclough’s and will find out if they could provide similar pricing to the co-op.
The CFO said the State is considering making some changes to items inside the “cap” so she is waiting for their decision before finalizing the budget.
There being no further business, Mr. Scott made a motion to adjourn the Meeting at 10:25 a.m., seconded by Mrs. Delaney. In a voice vote, all were in favor.
Lynda Knott, RMC
Stillwater Township offers residents a Recycling and Convenience Center for household trash and recycling.
Residents are able to view property tax information and make payments through the online system. You may find a property by entering the property’s location or block, lot and qualifier.
Stillwater Township posts all information about bids and proposals for township projects on a dedicated page.