Tree Removal Approved for Downtown
Council Meeting Feb 17, 2010
Workshop – Council persons: Sue Henderson, John Loffredo, Ed Johnson, Kevin Sanders. Absent: James Bruno
Wkshop is already underway:
Resident Pam Lamberton of City’s Sustainability Committee – with guest Michelle Knapik, program director for the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation – seated at table before council, explaining how green construction is actually cheaper than traditional construction/ developers cd meet the guidelines in some kind of pilot project.
Steven Leone, Trenton-based Principal w/ Spiezle Group, architects based in Columbia, Md. (www.Spiezle.com), making the business case for green construction.
Leone is expert on sustainable design/ wks w/ green strategies w/ schools, munis…carrot and stick approach, communities have limited budgets. Partnership. Has to be developer friendly, pressing economic issues, AP-centric issue, he is bd member nj green council since inception/ go bk to first energy crisis this wasn’t mainstream then, very scifi then/ envir pt of view, economic pt of view/ organization put together by developers not environmentalists, not strictly voluntary, is what’s in it for me, but also holistic type of attitude. If mandatory aspect cd be waived…we cd come back and retool. Idea was to transform the mktplc, cd be considered short or long term period depending on perspective, but mktplc has been transformed.
Q – Mayor Johnson – why need public dollars, why not go w/ own dollars if wnt to go green
A – good point, but pt of pilot is to address priv sector
Q- is emphasis on rehab or new prop
A – Michele –both
I could name handful of dev who are green dev, then sev’l sectors going green, hosp sector more are / developers still on a learning curve, not looked at holistic design at one pt can bld green for.
SHenderson – put Knapik’s CD in laptop and began to read, got halfway thru, thank you all work u put into it for an excellent cause/ impressed w/ stormwater mgmt/ so many not aware of…wd love to see that addressed especially (SH is on Deal Lake Commission)
Sustainability committee green dev checklist – Don (Sammet redevelopment director) cdn’t be here tonight but wants to put CD on city website, says PLamberton.
JLoffredo – have u talked to Interfaith Neighbors re their construction projects? Favor solar panels
Michelle – yes, Patrick (Durkin of Interfaith), who is here now…
JL – there are all dif types of wind turbines…
Famularo – dollars for taking down dangerous trees and trimming,
JL - who’s determining which ones,
JF – mr giberson has a list of which
Mayor – concerns about trees downtown, limbs which broke from heavy snow.
Reidy – all being done thru guidance from City’s env shade tree Commission, not just downtown but trees thruout community, this grant, as per James Fam. w/ be used for those, tkg dangerous limbs off, actually helping everyone.
Mayor- w/ be used just in city right of way
Reidy – preliminary res, bring back to governing body.
Fred Raffetto is next, pls…
FR – hotel/motel state and munic occupancy tax / State requires, muni level is discretionary, city can levi up to 3%, if so mst provide to state list of all facilities in city. From div of taxation Fred took this info and provided council,
Mayor – w/ include B&Bs, yes?
JLof – see it goes from 1 – 5% wdn’t wnt to put too much of a burden on them (B&Bs).
Reidy – enabling legislation before state gov’t to do all kinds of…we are in a recession…the balance you’re referring to… is the bal we’re lkg to strike.
Mayor – we do need to lk at user revenue to offset costs.
Gilmour – Commerce Dir.
Special events fee
Coast to coast – can’t be heard (AR had to move to back of rm to plug in laptop)
Reidy: Resolution to approve a tax anticipation note to be introduced this evening,
City goes out to mkt to get revenue to fund the budget while waiting for state aid to fund the budget. As anecdote, for first 5 yrs I was here I was advocating w/ state to have the city go on fiscal yr. AP chose to stay, flow of cash from the state, money we rec’d in 2009, in 2010 we’ll get cash from state aft July 1st/ State dept of ec affrs, was opposed to munis changing to fiscal yr/ transition from one to other, bonds floated were excess to what needed ran up debts. DCA said not approp way to go. He wnts to go back to new governor, do in very transparent way
Matters to be introduced by council –
Henderson – mayor and I went to valentines dance at W Side Com Ctr. Wanted to get word out about Census. Census committee secured facility, think w/ do kick off at thurgood marshall, more info w/ be coming on web site, count that we get w/ determine the services we can provide/ so keep pressing on that.
Mayor – couple items: one of first things on july 1 was city’s ability to tk credit cards. Where do we stand?
TR – put out RFP to all banks do biz w/ for best rates. cCd pc itself, we fnd mst banks diff some in am’t chg for use of…very close to mkg decision on that. Mst bnks w/ say we can manage fees for free in exchange…not putting Dollar on it/ but if not lrg volume, banks chg 2% fee/ mst given us a cap, we chg this for over a certain am’t. Depending on amount of money that flows thru sys in a month. By next council mtg w/ hv all that info.
Mayor – also there are pkg meters w/ tk credit cards.
TR – yes, pay stations using now, prob, city engineer lkg at for next grade of pay stations.
Mayor – putting recreation and other opportunities in city on website/ can we wk w/ BdofEd to creat youth and family portal? I can locate restaurant and access menu faster than can access youth program info.
James Famularo – asst city mgr/ since lst council mtg, reverse 911, we’ve used very effectively during snow storm
Mayor – citizens w/out land lines. Many who hv cell phones didn’t get 911 call I got.
JF – global connect is the system, does include cell phones. Can use that to inform parents about programs in city, no chg to use that. We need a more interactive website, lk’d at some add’l recreational sites in county/ ROAR contract out there/ trying to get program to use that. Package wd allow us to contact thru email and phone simultaneously.
TR – used biddie ball reg notice on electronic sign, 80% said they learned of it that way.
Mayor – info on how I can get involved, make donation, etc.
JF – we can do that
TR – during snow, tk 4 wheel D veh to give polic and firemen to drive
Mayor – up to 35” of snow this yr/ seen improvements and other examples, cursed people who didn’t mov cars until realized one was mine. Saw citizens who helped others dig out. Wk in progress.
TR – important hv streets no pkg during snow is enforced. Proper education where not to pk, bide by alternate side/ a lot of it is jst neighbor to neighbor cooperating.
Mayor – some towns budgeted 80k already spent 400k$ / I didn’t see plows out during day on Friday/ not sure if holiday
TR – no when it snows doesn’t matter what day it is (must plow)
Mayor – know we hv seniors can’t get out, people w/ medical conditions, can we lk at grants to pay people to shovel out neighbors / shovel sidewalks and follow plows to dig out driveways and get paid at end of day.
JL – meters still in force? Some are plowed in, how are people supposed to get to them?
TR- police tkg that into consideration.
Fred Raffetto –
Council w/ consider res addressed during exec private session / settle litigation bet city and habcore inc., the tx exempt status, class C boarding house on Second Ave.
Public portion – Bruno absent
Pam Lamberton –
On behalf sus comm., thank you for observing presentation tonight. Immediate relief for some businesses where existing conflict bet DEP guidelines and rooftop gardens, solar panels, etc. in the immediate future in redev zones.
Tee Lesinski – address issue and ask for your assistance, Wesley Lake she is pres of citizens for Wesley Lake, that and other lakes need assistance for clean up. Coastal lakes are cesspools, ours our three pretty bad ones for nj. All dev, infrascture in Neptune, ap, OG/ there is such thing as environmental justice, which started in 94 w/ pres Clinton, lisa Jackson, dir EPA, says one of her key issues. If they can do a study for nearly $9m on trains for south jersey, we sh get some since dept. of …hasn’t paid for drainage of Wesley Lake due to construction pollution, petroleum pollution when trolley tracks are removed, w/ downtown construction/ w/ only understand when start remediating these properties. Two storm ceptors at end of weslty lake, asking for them now.
Mayor – asked TR something, didn’t get it.
Bob Stevens: third ave – snow removal, very proactive about snow removal, doesn’t seem to be plan for alternate sides for sweeping, (was done for snow) – understand the quantity, not sure about removal other than side of roads/ where taken, limit on it…I never saw anyone again/ jst coming here tonite, cars sticking out, lanes go from 2 to 1 wout warning. Treacherous, wonder not more accidents/ lst snow storm did blk to blk wk’d out well/ I didn’t hv neighbors that cooperative, jst one car or two. Mandated that owners remove from sidewalks. See people walking middle of st. becaz sidewaks not cleared on public areas. Jst my observation.
TR – main is state st. as hwy 71/ typically they do decent job, it was state tkg from main st, dumping it by waterfront on vacant land. This storm, city blocked blk by blk to clear/ I’ll follow up on clrg sidewalks, absolutely we’re respons to do that. Not like library park but on thoroughfares. Re alternate side we’re trying to get that done, did more this yr in enforcing alternate side, but still issues.
William Robinson – Eatontown – grew up in AP, Tom Gilmour in APPress today stated wnt state to repeal family leave law…at first outraged then became angry/ he did call me back, he calls it a tax, I call it a right. I’m sure this law is very important to citizens of Asbury park.
Reggie F. 506 8th ave, soon to be biz owner, exec outline reviataliztion of the downtown, re. trees, like to ask q, has council exhausted possibilities of rethinking plan to retain some of foliage and trees downtown/ coming from town in No Jersey where similar occurred, very favorable to take down, but new trees never really took/ residents perturbed, sound barrier depleted, never replaced to this day/ astonished by twp and ldrship mvg ahead w/ plan, listening to experts. Hv we considered seeking experts outside of town to advise…as business owner on mattison av hv 2 beautiful bookmks, Yoga Festival by the Sea is her business – reason bringing is so that people can enjoy. Pls lk at downtown dev differently.
TR – we did not go outside AP, oh, Jim
James Henry - Lisa simms (certified arborist) from …Russ Lewis on Env commission contacted her, she did as favor to APk,
TR – majority trees reaching end of lifecycle and construction there will be aggressive/ at the end yes those bookend trees aren’t going to be there, but lot of thought about the variety of trees w/ be put there. Env shade tree commission tk lead, shared w/ governing body.
Anita Wiener – new Mattison Ave resident/ Rutgers Extension forestry program cd come in/ advise, takes long time for tree to grow, but think another lk w/ someone who comes from a college that deals w/ agriculture, might be another way to have a look at it. Hope whatever w/ plant are big and don’t have lot of fruit on it
Patrick Durkin – Interfaith Neighbors – house u saw on Adams two wks ago has come a long way, plumbing roughed in, hv/ac in, and the 2 family on dewitt even in snow the crews were busy framing 3rd flr of this house/ last Wednesday hse was just at deck stage, didn’t expect wd be already thru second flr this wek. Good progress on the West Side.
Larana Phipps Law – we are producing benefit concert haiti relief effort at VFW on Lake, on March 5th/, 6 pm/ if anyone interested in helping w/ evening.
Mayor – w/ y bring some of those brought to Kwaza, etc.
LP – Absolutely, and…Also she’ll be producing jazz show at Synaxis on Cookman on Sundays.
Paul Vail – Second Ave, know no one likes to see living thing cut down on Cookman while nice not particularly spec other than 40 yrs old, replacing with 6” Sycamores…(lost some of meeting here, due to battery)
Rita Marano – Complaint re. raise in ambulance fees to $600, plus $14/mile.
Fire Chief Keddy – yes we do have life support/ oxygen on board. One set of rules for people who live in ap, another for out of town, not all are billable calls, if ap resident we’ll tak what insurance gives you and won’t pursue balance of bill. Reason law was passed was to allow residents break, who are already paying thru taxes. We were able to earn $517,000 last yr, compared to $69k in 08.
Monarch provides a higher level of svc we don’t have.
TR – Let me explain that. law doesn’t allow our fire dept to provide services the dept is capable of right now, which wd help us underwrite fire dept and balance budget.
Marano – when I had my business people wd jst call ambulance for a ride.
Chief – that’s a by product, we can’t deny service
New business owner – (Hvy Accent) – heard reasons for taking down trees, happen to be an engineer, 2 degrees, work for port authority, more than one way to do things, better end result, to do arbitrary infrastructure wk, not necessary/ thnk shd be combined, tk certain ones down and provide new, a beautiful downtown, no need create harsh…?.. hearing 6” tree, sounds good but very expensive, root system requires hvy equip’t, very expensive, so we won’t see that many 6” trees.
Jackie Chesley: business owner in town – don’t believe so many trees are dead/ if u come down now and tk them down, u may end up in may or ju w/ little rain and trees may die, blking off streets and lose business. Financial and beautification concern to me. Clr cut the downtown…if hd a business there might be more careful to examine …
Tim McCorry – dir Capital Projects & Construction, Affordable Housing Alliance, based in Eatontown – very excited bldg homes on Avenue A/ terrific exp so far w/ bldg dept, everyone quite helpful. Looking forward to submitting plans for add’l three lots/ he has applications for anyone who may want to buy houses w/ him now. www.housingall.org, firstname.lastname@example.org
[16 - 2, 3 & 4 BR single & 2-Family Homes Available to 2 to 8 person households earning up to 60% of the COAH’s median income guidelines. Max income say for 2 persons is $42,654, Low would be $28,240 New Houses will be on Avenue A, Borden and DeWitt avenues. Sale prices $106,602 - $162, 859]
Brian Buck: – family residents since ‘35/ really happy w revitalization, totally agree trees beautiful, but at end of lives, my concern if we cd eke 10 more yrs out of them funding might not be there/ dead trees or no trees at all, infrastructure undergrnd may destroy all the trees. Network w/ lot of people, garden designers, opinion, trees were a mistake to begin with / tk out so can have new and hav for 80 yrs. Perfect if put right tree w/ never hv to do again/ know it will hurt be horrible,
End of public portion –
Council business –
Gilmour events app’d
GSFF – use of city council chambers appd
Jay david Williams reppointed to planning bd for 4 yrs.
Resolution auth city participation, county grant for 40k$ to start parting records on computer, get rid of paper.
Budget transfers $149,000 to 10 accounts, current fund
Sewer auth $7400 all apprv’d
Discharge mortgage $5,000 at 1037 mattison ave
Void tax sale Edison Tax sales, refund $44k
Tax appeal settlement Habcore inc. Block 166, Lot 4, 607 Second Ave/ habcore w/ pay $7k annually to the city
Resolution to approve grant for $7k for forestry, stimulus funded grant – all yes
Resolution $16,173, 737.40 in tax anticipation notes - Appr’d – The amount of notes outstanding in anticipation of the collection of taxes of the fiscal year 2010, except such notes as will be renewed by or paid from the proceeds of the notes to be issued, is $0. The amount is 30% of the tax levy for fiscal year 2009. None of the notes can mature later than 120 days following the end of the fiscal year (July 2010).
Interest rate to be approved by the city’s acting CFO. This authorizes her to move ahead with Bond Counsel, this time the firm of Powell Capital Markets, Inc., Roseland, NJ. The City Manager is authorized to negotiate a flat fee for the issuance of City notes that is consistent with or less than the amounts due under the proposal. The cost of such services shall be recovered through the sale of the City’s tax anticipation notes. In other words the city is borrowing $16Mn, which it expects to pay back when it gets the State’s aid funding to the city, plus the $173, 737.40, which will go to the bond counsel and other fees. The additional cost of interest will depend on the credit markets.
Draft ordinance from noise committee, Fred R wkg on, w/ be nuisance rather than noise ordinance, wanted to do in thoughtful process/ wnt to get this done before estab open doors / then to council/ carried to March 17th
Jan 28th adv, EMS billing charges, ordinance for. All yes
Ordinance – charges on sewer bill motion to adopt – all yes.
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