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Schackamaxon Removed from Nov. 20 Agenda, Speed Limit Reduction and Dog Fees Addressed

At the Nov. 20 Scotch Plains Conference and Business meetings, Sandy took the spotlight but other agenda items were also addressed.

At the Nov. 20 Scotch Plains conference and business meetings, much of the time was consumed by post-Sandy conversation, but other agenda items did get addressed, such as the Terrill Road speed limit and Dog License Fee.

Over the years, the township of Scotch Plains has been making efforts to reduce speed on the south side of town, Chief Brian Mahoney said.

Terrill Road's speed limit change in particular needed approval from the county which was recently obtained, so now the decrease in speed limit will be implemented.

Mahoney added that the township's goal is to make those roads on the south side of town more in line with 35 m.p.h. residential speed limits.

An additional resolution passed was an increase in dog license fees, which originally were $6.20 for a nutered dog and $9.20 for an unnutered dog. The new fees will be raised to 10 dollars and 15 dollars. Each fee includes service dog fees and clinic fees, originally charged separately. 

According to Township Clerk Bozena Lacina, the last time the dog fees were raised was during the 1990's.

Mayor Mary DePaola also brought up the search for commissioners to serve on the consolidation committee for the study to possibly merge Scotch Plains with Fanwood.

DePaola stated that the council is still looking to appoint two commissioners by the end of the year.

In addition to appointing commissioners for the consolidation study, the council is also looking for a liaison to the Union County Freeholder's Board.

DePaola encouraged anyone who is interested to reach out to the council as they work on providing more information on the appointment process.

The Mayor and council held an executive session prior to the conference and business meetings where they chose to remove the following resolution:

Resolution No. 2012-188 – Resolution authorizing the execution of a Redevelopment Agreement between the Township of Scotch Plains and NJ Golf Partners LLC relative to the residential units to be built on a portion of the Shackamaxon Golf & Country Club property.

According to DePaola, the council felt it was best to remove the agenda item until January when Mayor-elect Kevin Glover takes office. Glover was visiting family in California for the holiday and was not present at the Nov. 20 meeting.

Christopher Schiavone of NJ Golf Partners addressed the Mayor about his concerns with the project not moving forward.

Schiavone stated that NJ Golf Partners appreciates the mayor's deference, but added that he felt it was unfair to those who have been working on the project.

"We were told it was going to be voted on tonight," he said. "This is at the expense to the Township of Scotch Plains."

DePaola voiced her apologies to Schiavone stating that Glover originally voted against the agreement and he will be the new mayor as this moves forward.

Currently a settlement agreement exists between the township and NJ Golf Partners to build 60 units of housing on the Shackamaxon Golf & Country Club property.

"I hope we can get to the point where we can move this along," Schiavone said. 

DePaola also announced that the Annual Mayor's Gala was cancelled for this year.

She added that following the storm they felt it would be very difficult to ask businesses for donations and ask the public to come to a charity event.

A final business item added by the council was Councilman Ed Saridaki's call for donations to the food pantry. He advised residents that donations are very low and the pantry is in need of all types of food as the holidays are approaching.


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