The meeting was called to order at 6 p.m. by Municipal Clerk Lynda Knott. Ms. Knott stated that 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.
Ms. Knott led the public in the salute to the American Flag.
Ms. Knott invited Chaplin of the Stillwater Area Volunteer Fire Department Robert Scrudato to provide an invocation.
Ms. Knott then invited Sussex County Clerk Jeffrey Parrott to read the Statement of Determination and announced that at the last general election, Mrs. Dawn Delaney and Mrs. Vera Rumsey were duly elected to the Township Committee for three-year terms. Mr. Parrott administered the Oath of Office to Mrs. Delaney and Mrs. Rumsey congratulating them and wishing them well.
Roll Call indicated the following members present: Mrs. Delaney, Mr. Barta, Mrs. Rumsey, Mr. Scott and Ms. Chammings.
Election of Mayor:
Ms. Knott called for nominations for Mayor. Mr. Barta nominated Mrs. Delaney, seconded by Mr. Scott. Mrs. Delaney nominated Ms. Chammings for Mayor, seconded by Mrs. Rumsey. Ms. Knott called for additional nominations. There were no other nominations so nominations were closed. Mrs. Delaney said she would not accept the Mayor position now because she is just now joining the Township Committee. Ms. Knott called the Roll Call Vote for Ms. Chammings’ s nomination as Mayor: Mrs. Delaney, yes, Mr. Barta, no, Mrs. Rumsey, yes, Mr. Scott, no, and Ms. Chammings, yes. The Clerk congratulated Ms. Chammings on being selected as Mayor for 2023.
Ms. Chammings accepted the position of Mayor of Stillwater Township for 2023. The meeting was turned over to Mayor Chammings.
Election of Deputy Mayor:
A motion was made by Mr. Barta to nominate Mr. Scott as Deputy Mayor, seconded by Mr. Scott A motion was made by Mrs. Delaney to nominate Mrs. Rumsey for Deputy Mayor, seconded by Ms. Chammings. There were no other nominations so nominations were closed. Roll Call Vote for Mr. Scott: Mrs. Delaney, no, Mr. Barta, yes, Mrs. Rumsey, no, Mr. Scott, yes, and Ms. Chammings, no. Roll Call Vote for Mrs. Rumsey: Mrs. Delaney, yes, Mr. Barta, no, Mrs. Rumsey, yes, Mr. Scott, yes, and Mayor. Chammings, yes
Mrs. Rumsey accepted the position of Deputy Mayor for Stillwater Township for 2023
ALL MATTERS LISTED BELOW ARE CONSIDERED ROUTINE IN NATURE AND WILL BE ENACTED BY ONE MOTION. THERE WILL BE NO SEPARATE DISCUSSION OF THE ITEMS. IF ANY DISCUSSION IS DESIRED, THAT PARTICULAR ITEM WILL BE REMOVED FROM THE CONSENT AGENDA AND WILL BE CONSIDERED SEPERATELY ON THE REGULAR AGENDA.
2023-001 Adopting Schedule of 2023 Meetings
2023-002 Designating the Official Newspapers
2023-003 Authorizing Awards of Non-Fair and Open Contracts for Professional Services
2023-004 Authorizing the Cancellation of Tax Overpayment or Delinquent Amounts
2023-005 Authorizing the Cancellation of Delinquent Amounts for any Charges/Fees
2023-006 Setting Property Tax Due Dates, Delinquency Charges and Year-End Penalty
2023-007 Temporary Budget
2023-008 Establishing Mileage Reimbursement
2023-009 Adopting Cash Management Plan for 2023
2023-010 Authorizing the CFO to Invest Idle Funds
2023-011 Authorizing the CFO to sell Bond Anticipation Notes and Bonds
2023-012 Establishing 2023 Holiday Schedule
2023-013 Approving Mayor’s Appointments of Township Officers with Committee Concurrence
2023-014 Approving Appointments of Boards and Commissions with Committee Concurrence
2023-015 Appointing Tax Assessor and Attorney to Represent Township before County Tax Board
2023-016 Authorizing the CFO or Tax Collector to impose service charge for checks returned
2023-017 Authorizing Signatures on Checks
2023-018 Striking the 2023 Tax Rate for Funding the Stillwater Open Space Trust Fund
2023-019 Authorizing Purchases under New Jersey State Contract
2023-020 Authorizing Compliance with the US EEOC
2023-021 Regarding Municipal Clerk’s Hours
2023-022 Authorizing the Waiver of the Signature Requirements on purchase orders for certain vendors
Resolution 2023-013 was removed from the Consent Agenda so it may be discussed and voted on separately.
Mrs. Rumsey made a motion to approve the Consent Agenda minus resolution 2023-013, seconded by Mr. Barta. Roll Call Vote: Mrs. Delaney, yes, Mr. Barta, yes, Mrs. Rumsey, yes, Mr. Scott, yes, Mayor Chammings, yes.
Resolution 2023-013: Ms. Chammings stated there were a few requests from employees which were never discussed and before everyone was appointed for the entire year she felt the township committee should speak with them and discuss their requests. Mr. Scott made a motion to approve the Resolution 2023-013 until February 7, 2023 to allow the governing body to review employee requests, seconded by Mr. Barta. Roll Call Vote: Mrs. Delaney, yes, Mr. Barta, yes, Mrs. Rumsey, yes, Mr. Scott, yes, Mayor Chammings, yes.
Resolution 2023-023 was removed from the agenda as it was included in error.
There only amendment to the agenda from Mayor Chammings was to open to the township committee for comments:
Mr. Scott thanked Mr. Vex for his job well done as Township Attorney and for saving the Township a lot of money.
Mr. Barta said he appreciates all who serve on the township committee and hopes they will act with inclusivity going forward in order to best serve the residents of Stillwater.
Mrs. Rumsey thanked Mr. Scott for his work in 2022 as Mayor and Mr. Vex for his job well done as Municipal Attorney. Mrs. Rumsey said the Township has an incredible staff and DPW and top-notch emergency service personnel. Mrs. Rumsey also said she would like to see the lines of communication open and the township committee do what is right for the people of our township.
Mrs. Delaney thanked everyone for supporting her candidacy. Mrs. Delaney noted she has served ten years on the Recreation Commission and has learned if people work together anything is possible. Mrs. Delaney also noted she would like to keep the lines of communication open and really listen to what residents have to say.
Mayor Chammings thanked Mrs. Delaney for her years on the Recreation Commission. Mayor Chammings noted she, Mrs. Rumsey and Mrs. Delaney worked in the former Emergency Squad office and created an area for the board and commission secretaries to keep their files.
Mayor Chammings thanked George Scott, Paul Barta and Vera Rumsey for all which was accomplished in 2022 and said she is grateful lines of communication are open. Mayor Chammings recognized members of the public in attendance who serve the township for their volunteerism and desire to help their neighbors.
Mrs. Rumsey said she would like Mayor Chammings to be re-appointed as OEM for the next three years. Mayor Chammings noted it has been her pleasure to service as Emergency Management Coordinator and she already has several required educational seminars on her schedule for this year. Mayor Chammings said Mr. Kevin Carhart has attended a county meeting with her and he is interested in serving as her Deputy OEM and working with her in the deputy capacity.
Mrs. Rumsey made a motion to appoint Lisa Chammings as Office of Emergency Management Coordinator, seconded by Mrs. Delaney.
Mayor Chammings asked if there was any discussion on the motion. Mr. Scott asked Mr. Vex if the Nepotism Ordinance (adopted 12/2021) prohibits Mayor Chammings from acting in the OEM position. Mr. Vex said it is a township committee decision and if the township committee wished to have Mayor Chammings service as OEM they should amend the policy to reflect their wishes. In any case it is their ordinance and if they appoint Mayor Chammings it is not illegal.
Mrs. Rumsey said Mayor Chammings has taken all the required courses and is up to date on everything and should be re-appointed. The township committee is not appointing her family member.
Mayor Chammings noted she does not take a salary for the position.
Mr. Vex added the ordinance does raise concerns and should be amended by the township committee to correctly state their position.
Mayor Chammings said Mr. Carhart feels he is not ready to be OEM and is satisfied to act as deputy OEM and learn.
Roll Call Vote: Mrs. Delaney, yes, Mr. Barta, no until the ordinance is corrected, Mrs. Rumsey, yes, Mr. Scott, no until the ordinance is corrected, Mayor Chammings, yes.
Open Public Session:
Mr. Herb Yardley, Sussex County Commissioner and Liaison for Stillwater Township, said he loves living in Stillwater and noted he is pleased to see the robust conversation within the Township Committee continue. Mr. Yardley wished the everyone well in the new year.
Mrs. Heidi Mountford, 921 Mount Benevolence Road, noted the township committee did not adopt resolution 2023-23 appointing a municipal attorney and asked if the township committee asked for an RFP for municipal attorney. Mayor Chammings said yes, the township committee did ask for an RFP for municipal attorney and they had not yet discussed the RFPs received. Mrs. Mountford said Mr. Vex has done an outstanding job as municipal attorney and has extremely reasonable rates so she is not sure why the township committee would want to replace him and the replacement could cost the Township much more.
Mrs. Kathy Draghi, 1016 County Route 619, said she has been attending township committee meetings for the last ten yeas and Mr. Vex has a proven record and the ability to work with all committee members. Mrs. Draghi said Mr. Vex has been the most active and successful attorney Stillwater has had represent them. Mrs. Draghi said RFPs are costly and for this position not necessary especially when Stillwater has other positions to fill. Mrs. Draghi congratulated Mrs. Rumsey and Mrs. Delaney.
Mrs. Mountford took the floor again and said the In-Rem foreclosure project is near and dear to her and Mr. Vex spearheaded the project and she is again encouraging the township committee to allow Mr. Vex to continue.
Seeing no one else who wished to speak this portion of the meeting was closed.
Mayor Chammings said Mr. Scrudato said it well during his prayer it is a new beginning and the five words standing out are: harmony, balance, respect, leadership and negotiations – all words of wisdom and Mayor Chammings looks forward to working with the township committee members and public.
Mr. Scott said he is the senior member of the township committee serving close to twenty years and he wishes everyone a heathy and prosperous New Year and thanked our residents for their valuable input. Mr. Scott agrees Mr. Vex is an outstanding attorney and he stands out because he really cares about Stillwater.
There being no further business, Mr. Scott made a motion to adjourn the Reorganization Meeting, seconded by Mrs. Rumsey. 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 through the Municipal Software Inc. 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.
Visit the Office of Emergency Management page for links and the latest information