NUTLEY, NJ - The Nutley Board of Commissioners held their reorganization meeting via Zoom on Tuesday afternoon, May 19. All five commissioners were present from separate locations. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the remainder of the 2020-year public meetings have been moved online to Zoom until further notice.
The Rev. Thomas Nicastro of St Mary's Roman Catholic Church gave the invocation.
Municipal Court Judge Joanne Cocchiola swore in newly elected mayor Parks and Recreation Commissioner Mauro G. Tucci. Also sworn in earlier that day were re-elected commissioners Joseph P. Scarpelli, Alphonse Petracco, and Thomas J. Evans and newly elected commissioner, John V. Kelly III, following in his grandfather, John Vincent Kelly Sr.’s footsteps. Tucci and Scarpelli tied for mayor, and will share the term. Tucci will hold office until May 17, 2022. Tucci said, “[…] Mayor Scarpelli and I, being of the same mind, agreed to share the mayoralty in the best interest of the township. […] While 2020 will be challenging to say the least, I truly believe our best days are ahead of us, our work continues and we will get through this together.”
Tucci announced that he had COVID-19 in the course of the election and was out of commission for several months.
Each of the commissioners made statements on their re-election or election and thanked former commissioner Rogers for his service to the township.
Scarpelli said, “[…] It is obvious from the election results that people like the direction the town is going with all four commissioners handily being re-elected. […] We must continue with smart redevelopment that replaces our lost revenues and takes into consideration the inability of our schools to accommodate additional children. […]”
Petracco lost the mayor seat by 37 votes. The ongoing tradition in Nutley is the person, or in this year’s case persons, who have the highest vote is elected mayor. “We all know as tight as this race was it seems that we all had the confidence of the people in Nutley. […] there will not be any challenges from Al Petracco because I am confident [in] the two men that will be serving as our mayor the next four years,” he said.
Petracco wants focus his term on fixing Nutley schools. “I’m going to be committed to the Nutley children for the next four years, of moving the referendum forward, working hand-in-hand with my colleagues on the board, and hopefully the Board of Education, to make sure that we pass something which is affordable to the taxpayers and beneficial to our children,” he said.
Evans said the commissioners represent all the residents in the township in an inclusive way and they will work together to get through the storm. […] we face a very, very difficult time. The challenges are economic […] given the state of the environment, starting with the state level, the county level and here at the municipal level. We have to recognize the hardship that our residents face, and continue to do our best to manage to provide the services for the health, welfare and safety of the community, with the most frugal dollar that we can identify […],” he said.
Kelly said the township will get through any challenges together. “[…] if you think there is a great idea that can help Nutley, I want to hear about it. If you think that we are doing something wrong, I want to hear about it, and if you think there is something that we can do better, I also want to hear about it,” he said.
The first resolution passed at the meeting officially appointed Tucci as mayor. The next nine resolutions appointed the commissioners and assigned each to their respected departments, all four holding their previous offices. Kelly was appointed director of public affairs, replacing former commissioner Steven L. Rogers, who did not seek re-election.
Alan J. Genitempo, Esq. was re-appointed as the municipal township attorney and Angelo Servidio. Esq. was re-appointed as the municipal township prosecutor through May 21, 2024.
Resolution No. 103-20 was passed designating the Capital One Investors Bank, TD Bank, Valley Bank, and New Jersey Cash Management Fund as depositories for the Township of Nutley.
Resolution No. 104.20 was approved authorizing the mayor or director of revenue and finance and township clerk or clerk 1 and treasurer/chief financial officer to sign checks or withdrawal slips where a combination of three principal signatures are required. Township depositories will have signature cards of the persons authorized to sign.
TD Bank and Valley Bank are authorized to honor each check or draft for the payment of money (inclusive of any such as may be payable to the officers specified) bearing a replica signature of the mayor, director of revenue and finance, township clerk or chief financial officer with one manual authorized signature.
Resolution No. 107-20 was approved authorizing the chief financial officer to request bids and to place orders for the investment of idle funds solely in legally authorized investment vehicles and is authorized to transfer funds by wire solely for the following purposes and subject to all regulations: to or from the township checking account to other township accounts or savings accounts to or from accounts specified by banks or the State of New Jersey Cash Management Funds solely for the purpose of investing for the account of the township and from the township checking accounts solely for the purpose of making payments of approved township expenses.
Commissioner Evans clarified that these investments are in money market accounts not risk accounts
Tucci addressed the residents of Nutley before closing the meeting. “Alone, any one of your commissioners will do good things. Together we are going to do great things. [The residents] are always are top priority, we look out for you and will protect you to the best of our ability,” he said.
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