Tuesday, January 18th Council Meeting
Communications From The Mayor:
This year is off to a great start.
I am happy to announce that our first Council Workshop Meeting was held last Tuesday, January 11th. This workshop meeting is one of many that will now occur each Tuesday at City Hall one week before our regular Council Meetings. The purpose of these work sessions is, as the name suggests, to “work.” On these days, we will work until we are finished. These sessions will allow us to analyze, discuss, and challenge the upcoming agenda along with any other pertinent issues that arise so that we do not go into a Council Meeting blind and uninformed.
I strongly urge the public to come out to these workshop meetings and participate. It is certainly a wonderful opportunity for all of our residents as they can see their city government work right before their eyes.
I am also happy to say that we can finally say, “Let it snow!” I would like to congratulate the Department of Public Works, DPW Director Clyde Sweatt, the City Manager, and the City Council for their efforts this past year in improving our snow removal system and the great work they did during the last few storms. I can say that I have seen a significant improvement over the last year alone and have in addition heard countless comments from our residents expressing their sincere approval. As we all know, the system is not yet perfect and there are still minor defects that we will work on fixing; however, I can say we are finally on the right track.
In these difficult economic times, we must always be looking for new, innovative ways to revive our city and the heart of it: our downtown. This is why, last year, I created the Downtown Economic Growth and Stability Commission. In the near future, I will be holding a town-hall style meeting with Englewood’s merchants and stakeholders to discuss the future of downtown Englewood and what we can do to restore its vitality.
Acting Fire Chief Gerald Marion has announced that he is in the process of obtaining a commemorative steel memento from the World Trade Center for our city. As we come upon the 10th anniversary of the September 11th attacks this year, I believe this would certainly be an honor for our city to possess. A very special event will be held this year to honor the victims and first responders of the attacks as well as their family members and friends. The 9/11 Committee will be expanding and working more on this special event later in the year.
I also want to mention the success of Englewood Idol, which was recently held at bergenPAC. This was a wonderful show and I want to congratulate the children from both the public and private schools in Englewood for their excellent performances.
Finally, I left the most important item to discuss for last: the budget. The City Manager has presented his budget at this Council Meeting, and I am happy that he was able to prepare this presentation by the deadline of January 15th. Almost immediately, we will hold Budget Workshop Meetings which the dates have yet to be established, and I invite the public to come out to listen and participate. On the current path we are on now, the City Manager’s budget will be introduced on February 15th and the City Council will adopt it by March 15th. Because we are hopefully adopting the budget before the State does, we will need to estimate what the State numbers will be. If we are wrong, we will have to amend our budget. Amending the budget is nothing compared to the mess we will face if we wait to pass the budget like we did last year.
Resolution #029-01-18-11: Amend Schedule of Holidays for 2011 to include New Year’s Day, January 2, 2012.
Resolution #030-01-18-11: Renewal of Liquor Licenses for 2010-2011.
Resolution #031-01-18-11: Authorizing Public Donor Agreement with Vincent T. Kibbs Child Development Center in the amount of $58,413 for 2011 subject to budgetary appropriations.
Resolution #032-01-18-11: Awarding Bid for Lease of Property at 136 Cedar Lane for Cellular Communications Use.
Resolution #033-01-18-11: Appoint City Solicitor, reappointing William J. Bailey, Esquire for a period of one year beginning January 1, 2011 and ending December 31, 2011.
Resolution #034-01-18-11: Appoint Municipal Auditor, services from Suplee, Clooney, and Company.
Resolution #035-01-18-11: Appoint Real Estate Appraiser, services from McNerney & Associates.
Resolution #036-01-18-11: Authorizing Appointment of Assistant City Solicitor (Prosecutor) Gerald Oratio.
Resolution #037-01-18-11: Authorizing Appointment of Public Defender Aishaah Rasul.
Resolution #038-01-18-11: Authorizing Appointment of Code Enforcement Attorney Carl Beckwith.