Berkeley Heights Discusses Changing Reporting Structure of Department of Wastewater Treatment
Friday, September 14, 2012 • 6:44am
BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ – An ordinance amending and updating the township’s Administrative Code to move the Department of Wastewater Treatment from a department to a division under the Department of Engineering was introduced at the Township Council’s Monday, Sept. 11 meeting. The vote was 4-1 with Councilman Edward Delia voting no. Council President Kevin Hall was absent.
Explaining his vote, Delia said, “I just think the township engineer is overwhelmed with work already.”
Mayor Joseph Bruno explained, “This is the way it was several years ago. Then, for legal reasons (litigation), it was broken out. We just want to bring it back to the way it was. They will just report to the township engineer.” It will not increase his workload, he said.
The public hearing on this ordinance will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 9 at 7 p.m. in the municipal building.
The next council meeting has been moved from Sept. 25 to Tuesday, Sept. 18 when the council will continue a discussion on the traffic light proposed for Springfield Avenue at Lone Pine. The change is due to the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur.
• The township has ordered a new chipper. Until that arrives the Department of Public Works will borrow one from Union County to attempt to keep the branch chipping schedule on time. Mayor Bruno said branches may be no larger than four inches in diameter and all branches must be facing in the same direction to have them chipped. Branches with metal or fencing attached will not be accepted.
Township Engineer Robert Bocchino said the DPW is beginning to work on cleaning out streams. “We’re picking up our efforts on that now,” he said.
According to Bruno, Union County has been “encouraging” regarding giving municipalities open space money to aid in that effort -- if they all work together. Bruno has reached out to the Chathams, New Providence and Long Hill.
Councilman Thomas Pirone suggested the council oversell commuter parking spaces in the new parking lot because so many of them are empty, even though they are sold.
Bruno said, “If more people are not parking there by October, we’ll look at it. There are about 38 spots in that lot that have never seen a car.”
Councilman Robert Woodruff said Berkeley Aquatic is seeking to put a referendum together by doing a petition. He said residents should be aware that the township and the council are defendants in a suit being brought by the company. Signing the petition is in essence signing a document against themselves, he said.
Township Administrator Amey Upchurch told the council the reverse 9-1-1 system is operational and there is a portal on the website, www.berkeleyheightstwp.com, where residents can enter additional information regarding how the township can reach them in an emergency, such as cell phone numbers.
The VFW will hold the first annual barbeque and pig roast on Saturday, Sept. 22 on Locust Avenue. Adults cost $25, children ages 8 to 14 are $10. The money raised will be used to help veterans at Lyons hospital. Games will be part of the festivities, the mayor said.