February 8, 2021 Regular Meeting

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STILLWATER TOWNSHIP  ENVIRONMENTAL COMMISSION

February 8, 2021  Regular Meeting

*ZOOM MEETING ONLY*

MEMBERS PRESENT: Mrs. Emmetts, Mrs. Tracey, Mr. Dvorsky, Mrs. Branagan, Mr. Svendsen, Ms. Kral, Mr. Branagan

MEMBERS ABSENT: Mr. Szabo

Mrs. Wunder called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. with the statement that this meeting is in compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act. This was a regularly scheduled 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.

The flag was saluted and roll call taken.

Mr. Branagan resumed as Chairperson.

Member Appointments:

Leona Kral, appointed as Alternate #1; term expiring 12/31/22.

Ms. Kral was sworn in prior to the meeting.

Minutes

Mrs. Branagan made a motion to approve the minutes of 1/11/21, seconded by Mrs. Tracey.

Roll Call Vote: Mrs. Emmetts, yes, Mrs. Tracey, yes, Mrs. Branagan, yes, Mr. Svendsen, yes, Ms. Kral, abstain, Mr. Branagan, yes

Bills

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

Secretary: $232.69

Roll Call Vote: Mrs. Emmetts, yes, Mrs. Tracey, yes, Mrs. Branagan, yes, Mr. Svendsen, yes, Ms. Kral, abstain, Mr. Branagan, yes

At this point, this portion of the meeting was opened to the public at 7:06 p.m.

There being no members of the public present, this portion of the meeting was closed at 7:06 p.m.

Correspondence:

Community Tree Recovery: 1,000 Free Tree Seedling

The EC was in agreement that they would not apply for the free tree seedlings this year due to COVID.

Old Business

2021 Beautification Project:

Mr. Branagan was unable to contact Mr. Komar at the County regarding the waste management issue at water testing site #10. He will do so as soon as possible and will report back at the next meeting.

The EC discussed the condition of the Gallagher property on Fairview Lake Road and dumping of trash on the front of the property behind the brush. Mayor Chammings reported the property is not township owned and the DPW cannot remove the trash or they would be trespassing. An OPRA request was filed by the township at the NJDEP and there are seven boxes of responsive records pertaining to the property. Mr. Svendsen suggested contacting the NJDEP to notify them of the dumping and they will open an investigation. Mayor Chammings stated the Zoning Officer has sent several communications to the NJDEP. The EC expressed their frustration with the matter. Mrs. Wunder will follow up with the Zoning Officer and have her inspect the property when the snow clears.

Fishing Line Collection: All line is to be cleaned of litter/leaves, hooks and lead sinkers. Lead sinkers are to be provided at the meeting for recycling. Collection will continue again in March and/or April.

New Business

Zoning Officer Report: 2/5/21

920 Hardwick Road:

Photos were submitted by the owner Franciscan Charities to the Zoning Officer. There was no indication of soil importation; property was graded for farming purposes under the Right to Farm Act.

992 Route 521:

A Notice of Violation and Stop Work Order was sent to the owner Larry Condit for the clear cutting of trees on the property. Upon receipt, Mr. Condit applied for a tree removal permit and a driveway permit. The clearing of trees was done for the installation of a new circular driveway. The driveway application was referred to the Sussex County Planning and Engineering Department as it is located on a County road. The tree permit is on hold pending approval from the NJDEP.

Amphibian Crossing Training:

Mrs. Branagan attended the amphibian crossing training. She noted only ten volunteers would be accepted per crossing session and it will be on a first come, first serve basis the night of the crossing.

Volunteer/Member Recognition:

Mrs. Branagan: Attendance at the amphibian crossing training.

Mr. Dvorsky: Attendance at two webinars.

Mr. Dvorsky gave a brief background on the webinars he attended. The first on invasive species presented through the library. It was very informative and the presenter did an amazing job. The second workshop was on impermeable surfaces webinar through Rutgers. It was rain garden specific.

Endangered and Threatened Species: None.

At this point, this portion of the meeting was opened to the public at 7:45 p.m.

There being no public present, this portion of the meeting was closed to the public at 7:45 p.m.

Planning Board (PB) Liaison Report: Mr. Branagan

The Planning Board meeting was held on 1/20/21. Block 3302, Lot 14 appeared before the Board for completeness and was deemed complete. Questions regarding slope were satisfied. The property is located along the Paulinskill and will be subdivided into two lots consisting of 110 acres and 13 acres.

Township Liaison Report: Mayor Chammings

2/21/21 meeting was cancelled due to the inclement weather.

-Recycling Coordinator Jeff Gardner appeared before the Committee at their last meeting. He expressed concern with the increased cost to dispose of recycling. There are new cardboard regulations and if the cardboard is wet it will not be accepted. The current cardboard container is uncovered. Mr. Gardner is looking into the best option to address this matter. The Township Committee will ask Mr. Gardner to be the municipal representative for the SCMUA board. Mr. Dvorsky asked if SCMUA would be affected by the new regulations and Mayor Chammings stated SCMUA is on a larger scale and can outsource. She noted the solid waste collection at the Recycling Center is working out well and the cost covers the disposal.

-The Township Committee is currently working through the budget process.

-The next Committee meeting will be held on 2/16/21. There will be an auction of four township owned properties.

At this point, Mr. Branagan asked that if anyone observes something questionable being done in the township to please report it to the Zoning Officer; tree removal, etc.

Mayor Chammings asked that if anyone sees an employee of the DPW, Recycling Center or town hall, please thank them for their diligence and working through the COVID pandemic. It has been very difficult.

With no further business to come before the Commission, Mrs. Branagan made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 8:02 p.m., seconded by Mr. Dvorsky. In a voice vote, all were in favor.

Respectfully submitted,

________________________________________

Kathy Wunder, Secretary

 

 

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