Monday, March 22, 2010

What Happened?

For the past several months, as a Town Council, we have been working hard to approve a budget from the Mayor and Administration. Going into the public budget process, I firmly believed there were opportunities to be more efficient. The Administrator, Marie Goble did a tremendous job balancing rising costs and efficient management. Just last week, it looked like we were in a good place. I originally did not want a tax increase of more than a few dollars. I thought it was unrealistic to have no tax increase but believed we could keep the burden to a minimum. The final result at the last meeting was our tax burden would be about $17 a year on average Denville household. While a few dollars more than I wanted, I would have voted to pass this budget. Mainly because so many costs of our local government are mandated by State plans and restrictions and out of the municipalities control. Therefore, it is my duty as a councilman to make sure our public safety is protected and we are getting the best value from our services.

However, that all changed on Friday (3/19/10) of last week. The governor announced massive cuts to our municipality. This totals nearly 1/2 million dollars. This Tuesday evening (3/23/10), the council will convene again to determine what to do and we have to be ready to act quickly. We will look to the Mayor and Administration for suggestions on the budget that they will introduce to us. And from there we will do our best to push for better efficiency and new solutions.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

We Must Recycle (It will save us money.)

Denville's garbage tonnage has gone up. And our recycling amounts have gone down. We used to be a clear leader in recycling. It's important for the environment but also our pocketbooks. Because of such increase in garbage, our garbage fees are going up. This could not come at a worse time given the state of our economy.

Our Mayor and Administration do a good job keeping Recycling top of mind. Our Public Works department does an unbelievable job at the Recycling Center but we have to do more to keep awareness at it's highest.

I'll do my best to encourage and help the administration keep a thorough campaign throughout town to recycle.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Farmer's Market (Updated)

The Town Council was recently given a presentation from Kristin Pamperin of the Urban Muse and Denvile Chamber of Commerce regarding the potential of a Farmer's Market in Denville. This would occur on Sunday's during the summer.

Overall a Farmer's Market seems to have more positive effect on our community that any negative. At a recent council meeting, questions were asked about parking, police concerns, and traffic but I believe all departments have agreed it won't be a major concern especially if there is a trial run for a short period. The event should also help our downtown businesses.

At last evening's Town Council Meeting, the Town Council introduced a well documented ordinance allowing Denville to have a Farmers Market. This ordinance is properly worded to only allow official farmed produce and food. The ordinance will move on to the Planning Board for approval then back to the Council for final. The organizers also mentioned how there would be a table for a local Denville organization and local shop each week.