SPARTA, NJ - The brief December 11 Sparta Township Council meeting was celebrated as the final meeting for Councilman Scott K. Seelagy. During the open to the  public sessions, two residents spoke of Seelagy’s work, efforts and time spent as a champion of the town of Sparta. Both Paul Johnson and Rick Sullivan, who had written a favorable speech regarding Seelagy, praised the councilman for his years of service.

 “I want to just really say, things don’t go unnoticed, people do see them. The amount of time you’ve dedicated to the community, you’ve taken away from your family, and I for one want to say thank you. So for that thankless job, thank you Scott,” Sullvan said at the conclusion of his speech.

The only issue brought up during either of the two open public sessions was raised by Steve Murray. Murray spoke in order to update the council on an issue regarding Service Electric Cable TV & Communications, and clients being charged for services during Hurricane Sandy that they did not receive. Murray called the company and was told that clients would be credited for the outages, but he was later told that the company would not be crediting clients, because JCP&L did not provide power during the outages. Murray has since been updated that a decision will be made on Wednesday, December 12.

  Two items were discussed during the Manager’s Report, given by Township Manager David Troast. The first item followed up on cleanup from Hurricane Sandy. The DPW is still picking up debris and, the township website has a list of all of the roads that have been completely cleared. This Friday, December 14, Troast said he is hoping to get a contract to get more workers to aid in cleanup. The town is also preparing a second staging area for brush, and debris and is working with the Lake Mohawk Country Club for cleanup.

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“The current pile is about the size of a football field and t30 feet high,” said Troast about the collected debris.

The second item in the manager’s report involved shared service agreements he discussed with Franklin Borough, and, wanted to change the wording. Troast will discuss the wording with Attorney Tom Ryan, and they hope to have a contract by the next meeting on Thursday, December 27.  

 A hearing of an ordinance to revise the township personnel and policies manual was adopted, as well as the following resolutions: appointment of Municipal Prosecutor Jonathan McMeen and Public Defender Daniel Colfax, a refund of the state tax appeal credit and the tax overpayment, a solid waste account credit, and the appointment of a risk management consultant. The expenditures were also approved.

In the Unfinished Business portion of the meeting there was no update regarding Homer’s Restaurant, the parking ordinance was resolved and is acceptable the way it is, the evaluation policy for Township Manager and Township Clerk will be discussed at the next meeting, as well as the option of Grant Writing Services. Lastly, World Care Organization, a non-profit group that helps to provide humanitarian relief during times of disaster (click here for more information), wants to hold a seminar one evening, geared towards the township's police officers, EMTs, fire department and other departments;  the council will need to make sure that the aforementioned people requested to be there are willing to attend.

In New Business, the council received a letter of resignation from William Hookway from the Planning Board and, after being asked for the council’s support, they will be looking into the Sussex County Family Success Center. Councilwoman Molly Ann Schon reminded the council that there would be a Municipal Alliance guest speaker, discussing drug addiction, at Homer’s Restaurant on the morning of Wednesday, December 12. Deputy Mayor John E. Schon discussed that he is looking into the credentials, and hoping to receive a proposal from, a woman who would like to put together training courses for the municipality.

Schon also congratulated Reverend Brown School for winning the Blue Ribbon Award for Academic Excellence, and Councilman Gilbert A. Gibbs visited all of the Sparta Schools to thank the teachers for all of the work that they do.

The next township council meeting will be held on Tuesday, December 27 at 7:30 p.m.


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