SUSSEX BOROUGH, NJ - On the quiet, seasonably cold evening of January 4, the Council of Sussex Borough and town citizens assembled at the Sussex Municipal building to witness the swearing in of newly-elected council members Linda Masson and Annette Stendor, to formally confirm mayor Jonathan Rose’s appointments the 2013 Sussex Fire Department Officers, and to otherwise prepare for the upcoming year.
A basket of complimentary candy canes greeted those brave enough to face the crisp winter air on a Friday evening to attend the Borough of Sussex’s reorganization meeting. Municipal Clerk Mark Zschack launched the night by administering the Oath of Office to Republican Councilwomen-Elects Linda Masson and Annette Stendor for three year terms on the council, to terminate on December 13, 2015. After congratulating Masson and Stendor on their new positions, Zschack motioned for the line of Fire Department Official nominees, donned in their uniforms, to proceed to the front of the room to take the Oath of Office. Officials including Chief Rick VanderPloeg and Deputy Chief Jake Little, were confirmed to serve Sussex Fire Department for the year 2013.
Once fire department members proceeded on out, Rose steadily moved through new 2013 resolutions on the meeting’s agenda at a healthy pace, while council members voiced their “ayes” or “nays” at each measure floated. Proposed holidays of the Borough of Sussex were unanimously approved, although it should be noted that coucilwoman Masson, backed by Stendor, motioned to change the date of the meeting on Tuesday, April 2 to the following week on Tuesday, April 9, a motion that was carried by the board.
Mayor Rose’s nomination of John E. Ursin, Esq. of Courter, Kobert & Cohen was also approved, despite opposition by both Masson and Stendor. Harold Pellow of Harold Pellow and Associates was confirmed as borough engineer, and John Ruschke of Hatch Mott MacDonald was appointed as Sussex’s water/sewer engineer, as per the mayor’s recommendations. Nominations of Thomas Ferry as borough auditor, Michael Vreeland as dam engineer, and Kenneth P. Nelson as the town’s professional planner, were also approved by the council for the year 2013.
Relevant to the well-being of the borough, Resolution 2013-16R was unanimously passed by the Council, appointing Morville Agency as the town's risk management consultant.
Crucially, Resolution 2013-21R was also approved, which adopted a temporary budget for the beginning of year 2013 of $318,401.00 for the Current Fund ($259,401.00 of which is subject to a 26.25 percent limitation) and of $818,630.00 for the water/sewer budget ($317,630.00 of which is also subject to a 26.25% limitation). The 26.25 percent alludes to the percentage of last year’s 2012 budget, that can be used by the town during the first quarter of 2013.
Though approval of a provisional budget is not insignificant, the council needs to introduce and pass a permanent budget proposal for Sussex Borough within the next few months.
“This is just something temporary so we can pay our bills the first three months of the year,” said Zschack.
A motion assigning Darren Maloney as qualified purchasing agent for the Borough of Sussex was additionally carried by the council. Councilman Salvatore Lagattuta briefly commented before Rose jumped to the next order of business, “I’d just like to say that this worked out very well last year.”
All of Rose’s pending appointments for 2013 borough government and boards were approved as stated in the council agenda with one deviation from the document: Lynn Meyer was confirmed as a full member on the 2013 Recreation Committee, with the removal of Kelly Morgan, who was originally listed as a nominee.
When Rose opened the floor to nominations for the position of council president, councilman Frank Dykstra instantly nominated councilman Bruce LaBar. Councilwoman Marina Krynicky seconded the nomination without hesitation. Therefore, LaBar will be the acting Council President for the year 2013 on the Sussex Borough Council.
No members of the community chose to speak in the time allotted for public discussion. After the meeting’s adjournment, the night concluded on a somber note when council member Dykstra submitted his letter of resignation from his position on the council to Rose, effective January 5.
The mayor expects to hear suggestions from the council of people to potentially fill Dykstra’s position at the next meeting on Tuesday, January 22.
Continue to follow The Alternative Press for Sussex County news, as well as news and community information on The Alternative Press of Sussex County’s Facebook Page.