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Caucus Meeting 6/16/09

I was not able to attend so Tom sent me the update.

First, the town has been successful in its lawsuit for the Westmont Theatre.  The Commissioners discussed notifying the redevelopers who submitted proposals for an update from them.  They did not come to any resolution on that the plan is because this only occurred today.  More to follow

There will be 5 ordinances brought up next week. 

They have not finalized the water sewer shut off fee ordinance.  They are still waiting for NJ American rates to use as a guide for ours.

There is an ordinance to establish tighter overnight parking regulations.  There will be a $50/year fee for a permit. 
http://www.haddontwp.com/pdf/ordinances/1238PermitParking.pdf

There are 2 capital expenditure appropriates bills. 

They are making changes to the Salary Ordinance. 

There was a fair amount of discussion around the East Oakland Ave. property swap.  The mayor made a major statement that they needed to get this done quickly and didn’t want to go through eminent domain for the sewer easement they needed in connection with the Bettlewood project.  That is why the worked through the trade.  They will be acting on it shortly.  During the public portion, I suggested that they consider whether it makes sense to vacate the paper street (it was never build) which runs through the land while they are doing this to preserve the land indefinitely.  Also, I asked if a Phase 1 environmental assessment was done prior to taking title on the land.  One has not been done.  I also asked if it made more sense for the County to take the land and annex it onto the Newton Lake park which it abuts.

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46 Responses

  1. If township has an easement why do they need to cut a deal to put in the sewer line?
    seems like clear-cut case for town to lay sewer line on easement.

    They bend over backward on issue of sewer line on an easement but then want to drag sulock through court when he offered to negotiate?

    sounds like more to the story. who owns the property they are cutting a deal and does that person have a realtionship to commissioners to their campaign? where there is smoke usually fire let’s investigate

  2. The problem is that they don’t have an easement and the solicitor said that they wouldn’t give one. And because they are trying to get the project started now, they made a business decision to do this transaction. I have no idea about the relationships.

  3. if you can use eminent domain to take someones business to give to a developer surely you can use it to lay a sewerline something not right here

  4. Sawchuk

    Informative article in the Inquirer about Westmont Theatre—–post it please.

  5. can anyone inform us the identity of the proprety owner that is involved in this deal

  6. According to the township, the owner’s name is Ed Miller and he lives in the Extension.

  7. Not the article where Hauss says it will take 8-9 MILLION to rehab the theater. That is not good news. What about the article where the township won the lawsuit against Pang? Where is Ms. infomation now?
    Thi must certainly be the Sawchuk/Cassel negative blog spot. LOL

  8. LOL? I just don’t know why you didn’t post these yourself. I guess you just want to bash. Either you are too stupid, or just a partisan hack.

    There were 2 articles that I saw.

    http://www.philly.com/inquirer/local/nj/20090618_Judge_clears_way_for_Westmont_Theater_work.html

    http://theretrospect.com/default.asp?sourceid=&smenu=1&twindow=&mad=&sdetail=1914&wpage=1&skeyword=&sidate=&ccat=&ccatm=&restate=&restatus=&reoption=&retype=&repmin=&repmax=&rebed=&rebath=&subname=&pform=&sc=1155&hn=theretrospect&he=.com

    It is good thing that the theatre redevelopment may come out of its holding pattern. But at this point there is no announced plan by the commissioners on what they are doing. I expect that it will come in the next month or so. Also, Pang may appeal so they are being cautious. The biggest thing is that the building may be given historic designation. That could alter all plans going forward.

    The other big question now is what happens with the vacant land that Pang owned adjacent to the theatre? At this point, all we have are questions, with no answers yet.

  9. too bad our mayor randy teague did not return calls to the newspaper reporters (according to the article) so we dont know what is going on.

    Guess if youre not a part of the secret meetings that allegedly run this town you don’t get to know what they are doing with your tax dollars.

    thanks randy thanks a whole big bunch. are we gonna get to watch goonies again on the astroturf cuz thats another great use of our dollars — movie night on the astroturf. how bout some football dude?

  10. what exactly isplan for theater?
    over 1 year ago randy announced the marquis was falling and they issued RFPs for its removal to “save” it (that is randyspeak for ya) issue was well covered in the retrospect.
    Now no updates but marquis still standing.

    Now we have the poolhouse falling and we are bonding a LOT of money to build a new one. poolhouse was falling falling over one year ago. still standing. still being used right now. thats randyspeak for ya.

    any updates on the marquis or poolhouse?

    could randy teague please stand up and issue a statement on what exactly is going on with above issues? can we pin him down to make a public statement of fact from which he can be held accountable?

    stop your slithering randy stand up and be a leader and a man

  11. ask him the questions big shot or just keep hiding on this blog and being a coward

  12. sounds like they did ask the questions j heillman or should we call you st evelyn or whatever name you using today?

    randy teague is the mayor who doesn’t want to give any straight answers and doesnt respond to reporters phone calls. then he doesnt answer questions at the meetings. then he restricts public comment to 5 minutes.
    remember when randy screamed for the police to remove a critic from the meeting?
    or how about when randy hid in his office while he asked the police to escort the head of DPW out of the building instead of being a real man and leader and firing him himself?

    the coward is randy teague. he is not a leader and not a man of character. just ask the seniors that came to that meeting and called him out on his broken promises

  13. Hey Watcher – I think you pegged Heillman as someone who just uses different names to post each time. I encourage anyone to go on whitepages.com and do a search. Not a single hit in the state of New Jersey with that last name. And there is a pattern of “people” who have done that.

    Now the irony. We have a person posting with a bogus name criticizing someone for posting anonymously. The people of this town never cease to amaze me.

    Relating to the substance of your post, yes, every example you posted about Mayor Teague is in fact true.

  14. To: Anon about the article:
    Ms. information was on vaca…didn’t know I had to notify everyone.

  15. any news on tonight’s meeting?

    people say they voted in a whole bunch of new fees. is it true we have to pay 50 dollars now to park in front of our own homes and get permission from the town first?

    so first they put in parking meters. now they are going to charge me to park in front of my own house?
    that’s great.

    Is it true they passed salary raises while we are in the middle of worst recession in our history?

    wow. st. evelyn care to speak up and fill us in you are so informed on why this is so very good for our town. please explain how any of this is good for anyone.

    • There’s no need for me to speak up. You ask and answer your own questions. No, thank you, I’ll wait until I read the facts.

  16. St Evelyn thank you for demonstrating once again that you are nothing but a shill for Randy Teague and gang.
    A human puppet as it were.. does randy control you with strings or with a hand up your a**?
    Quick ask randy how to spin a response against these outrageous new fees by attacking Cassel.

    • If you put your crack pipe down for a moment and re-read prior postings carefully you may (it’s a stretch, know) understand that Randy would not know me if he fell over me.

      But let me respond to your drivel.

      I don’t think there’s a new $50 fee to park in front of your home. It’s a current, unenforced ordinance enacted because some portions of the township have narrow streets that make it difficult for emergency service vehicles to manuver if they are clogged with vehicles.

      Some residents expressed concern. The township’s response is they can’t selectively enforce the ordinance, so it has to be uniformly enforced.

      Now let’s imagine for a moment it was your home on fire or your child that needed an ambulance. Would you be itchin an moanin about the fee then? I don’t think so… but you can curl up with your pipe and think about it later.

      Is $50 onerous? Yes it is. But if you have so many cars in your household that you cannot safely park them in your driveway, and you need the space in the street and $50 IS a problem, well friend, you have a bigger problem than a local ordinance… go see your forensic auditor… he may offer personal financial planning services

      Now, how about those parking meters… You’re a business owner on the Main Street. You rely on a constant traffic coming in and out of your establishment. Maybe your a coffee shop, maybe your a card shop. You need turnover and therefore you need parking spaces.

      Your neighbor is another retail shop… maybe an office, maybe a hardware store. Their employees park in front of your shop ALL DAY. There’s no space for your customers and there’s no incentive for your neighbor’s employees to move because there’s no parking meters.

      Parking meters create turnover. Turnover leads to increased foot traffic. Increased foot traffic leads to a vibrant downtown.

      Charging for parking on main street and charging for parking on residential streets… differtent issues intending a different outcome.

      Now,resist the temptation to draw again on that crack pipe… I have one more point.

      Employee raises. The budget, which was already presented, and resulted in a rate reduction, and INCLUDED a 3.5% increase in salaries. If you wanted to really itch about it and make a difference, the opportunity was there. But that doesn’t fit with your crackhead agenda, so go sit in your corner, and itch, itch, itch.

      Finally, I won’t attack Cassel. I don’t agree with him, but he’s a trooper. He does try (I don’t always agree with his effort) to justify his positions but he doesn’t spout the unreasoanble concadence of crap you pour forth.

      OK, now suck on your pipe and drivel on another responese. The night is young and we all await your wisdom

      • I just hope that with the $50 they collect, they put up some new signs about the ordinance. The old ones are so faded you can’t read them or they are for neighboring towns.

      • I did question the increases for non contract employees back when the contract emplyees were receiving their raises. Yes the taxes were decreased by a small amount but it could have been more.

        It would also help the cash flow if the employees were required to pay their taxes on time. I know of one in particular who waits till right before the tax sale is published and brings all properties to the point of no tax sale.

      • St Evelyn, you’re an idiot. Not everyone has a nice long driveway in which to park “so many cars”. I live in a section of Haddon Township where the driveways are only big enough for one vehicle, if there’s even a driveway. Where do you suggest we park our cars? And don’t tell me I should get rid of one of my two vehicles, that’s not a valid suggestion. We need two vehicles so my husband and I can get to work (in part, to pay these ridiculous fees). Carpooling is not an option for either of us, so that’s not a valid suggestion either. And the township already selectively enforces this ordinance. I have a neighbor who’s been parking on the street for 4+ years, and he just received his FIRST ticket for overnight parking without a permit. And you say I shouldn’t bicth and moan about paying $50 for the “privilege” to park in front of my own house? And what about my neighbor who doesn’t even have a driveway? What’s he supposed to do, not have a car at all? The township could VERY easily determine who does have to pay a parking permit fee and who does not. In fact, you made that suggestion yourself. If a resident has a driveway big enough to fit “so many cars”, and they STILL park on the street, they should pay the fee. But those of us who have a driveway big enough for just one vehicle, or NO driveway at, should not have to pay this fee. And what is the mayor’s reason for enforcing this fee? To reduce overnight parking so they can plow the streets when it snows. Yeah, like we have SOOO much snow each year that it’s a burden. Give me a break. I’m being forced to pay a fee to park in front of my own house so Randy and his cohorts can get their 3.5% raises, no other reason. So much for my tax “decrease”.

  17. Jen wasn’t able to get to the meeting so I will be sending her a synopsis of the meeting to post. I just haven’t had time to write it yet.

    It is true that they passed the new $50 fee. I will provide more details. In the end, there are many people in this town who have lost their jobs (including one of my neighbors), had pay decreases, are on fixed incomes and any additional fees are truly a burden. Perhaps you would like to volunteer to be their financial planner in that situation. We need to be empathic to and thinking about those who are not in as good a financial situation as you may be.

    Yes, they reduced the township tax rate but have increased the fees all over the place, trying to justify it with increased costs. The future debt burdens of our town have also increased significantly. I haven’t seen one analysis justifying these increases other than, ” Our costs with New Jersey American have gone up”. I guess the fees are also going up because they are giving raises to all the employees and they have to find a way to pass these increased costs on. I guess if they didn’t raise the salaries, they wouldn’t have to raise the fees.

    I will say that the post by anonymous accurately stated what happened at the meeting. You may criticize the delivery, but the facts are the facts.

    I will provide Jen with a more complete post.

    BTW, the biggest issue that has come up is that the Westmont Theatre was not discussed at all last night. Be on the lookout for an article tomorrow in the Retrospect. I will have more to say about that in the next few days.

    • Tom, just got an offer today from a competitor today…my 1 month vacation has come to an end.

      • Congrats Sean. I wasn’t actually referring to you but another one of my neighbors, even though I know several people in town who have lost their jobs. Based upon the Mayor’s reaction last night, I don’t believe that he grasps the truly difficult times that we are in. They just keep piling on the fees. In fact they introduced another new set of increased construction hookup fees which will in fact just increase the costs of development, when in fact, if the costs haven’t increased for construction inspections, we should keep those costs lower to encourage and be developer friendly. If we want the increase ratables, we need to keep the township related fees lower.

    • It’s a tough economy, but you didn’t address my point.

      If you have more cars than you can fit in your driveway and cannot afford a $50 fee to park in the street, maybe the ordinance is not your biggest problem.

      Is it or is it not a safety issue if emergency service vehichles are encumbered by cars parked in the street?

      If it is a safety issue, whose home should be at risk and whose home should not be at risk?

      • I’d be interested to see what other towns charge. Maybe I’ll look into this during my last few days of “vacation”. I think the fine is $25 per violation, so in the past year, I have already paid half of the $50. I once asked an officer about it and he said one street per night was usually picked out.

        Oh about the parking meters, you get 15 minutes free. The biggest pain is having the change with you.

      • St Evelyn, you’re an idiot. Not everyone has a nice long driveway in which to park “so many cars”. I live in a section of Haddon Township where the driveways are only big enough for one vehicle, if there’s even a driveway. Where do you suggest we park our cars? And don’t tell me I should get rid of one of my two vehicles, that’s not a valid suggestion. We need two vehicles so my husband and I can get to work (in part, to pay these ridiculous fees). Carpooling is not an option for either of us, so that’s not a valid suggestion either. And the township already selectively enforces this ordinance. I have a neighbor who’s been parking on the street for 4+ years, and he just received his FIRST ticket for overnight parking without a permit. And you say I shouldn’t bitch and moan about paying $50 for the “privilege” to park in front of my own house? And what about my neighbor who doesn’t even have a driveway? What’s he supposed to do, not have a car at all? The township could VERY easily determine who should pay a parking permit fee and who shouldn’t have to. In fact, you made that suggestion yourself. If a resident has a driveway big enough to fit “so many cars”, and they STILL park on the street, they should pay the fee. But those of us who have a driveway big enough for just one vehicle, or NO driveway at all, should not have to pay this fee. And what is the mayor’s reason for enforcing this fee? To reduce overnight parking so they can plow the streets when it snows. Yeah, like we have SOOO much snow each year that it’s a burden. Give me a break. I’m being forced to pay a fee to park in front of my own house so Randy and his cohorts can get their 3.5% raises, no other reason. So much for my tax “decrease”.

  18. You assume that everyone has a driveway. There are homes in our town that have absolutely NO parking including one my street that has no driveway. Now they have to pay. This is wrong. For others, many houses have very limited parking. And yes, getting ticketed for not having the permit that you couldn’t afford in the first place is a big problem.

    And it is about way more than whether you can afford it. It is about the fact that the town is putting another “tax” on its residents to raise $50,000/year. That is wrong too in my opinion. By the way, if the typical township tax burden is $2,000 (excluding the county and school tax), then $50 is a 2.5% tax surcharge. For most houses it is less than $2,000.

    Relating to emergency service vehicles, this ordinance only addresses 2AM to 6 AM. What about the other 20 hours of the day? Your statement is illogical. If vehicles parking in the street pose a public safety issue, why didn’t they eliminate all parking on one side of the street of all narrow streets to make it easier for emergency vehicles to pass at all times? We have serious issues about that on my street in fact. The benefit though of the congestion is it keeps the speed limits down. That being said, during most times of the day, it would be virtually impossible for a fire engine to get through.

    In the end, it is about the ability to raise revenues and nothing else in my opinion. Any other issues about the existing laws could have been addressed without a fee.

    • If someone does not have a driveway or does not have a driveway large enough to accomodate 2 cars, they should receive a permit for free.

      It’s not a tax, it’s a fee and not a new fee. The ordinance requiring vehicles be removed from the street between 2 and 6 am was put in place before this administration.

      Honestly, you’re a bit inconsistent here. On more than one occassion, you have stated in this blog, the law is the law. Apparently, the law is the law when it fits your agenda of bashing the commissioners.

      Despite your prestidigitation, an imposition in fees does mean an increase in tax as it applies to the users and not to all property owners.

  19. Wow. Can you show me where anyone gets a break if they don’t have a driveway? And what is the magic about 2 spaces? So if a family has a kid living at home attending college at Rowan who needs a 3rd car, they should be discriminated against because families should only have 2 cars according to you? I am so glad you pointing out the stupidity of this law.

    By the way, it is a NEW fee. In the past there was no charge for the permits. It was free. That was the law, until last Tuesday when they went from free to fee. There you go bashing me without knowing the facts.

    This isn’t an agenda about bashing the commissioners. It is an agenda about putting in new laws that are just plain ridiculous just to raise revenues. In fact, the new law will take police time away from things that actually matter from a public safety perspective because the police will have to go out annually, instead of every 3 years to review the situation for everyone who wants a parking permit. Quite frankly, the reason I opposed this so vociferously is that I was subjected to this same stupid law when I lived in Haddonfield. It was dumb then and it is dumb now.

    • New fee or not, if you want to park in the street overnight, you can, but you have to pay… and I’d rather see fees go up than taxes. Fees you can opt not to pay. Taxes? Not so much.

      • I am not able to opt not to pay this permit parking fee. I’m being penalized for needing two vehicles while living in a house with a driveway big enough for only one. Why should I have to pay?

  20. St. Evelyn
    is obviously just a shill for the commissioners.

    Once again St Evelyn rides in on its highhorse with a bunch of bogus. There was no permit fee before. Now there is a fee. Simple as that. It’s not just 50 bucks — you have to get permission from the town and IF that permission is granted then you can pretty please park in front of your own house.

    If a street is too narrow for emergency vehicles then you can just make that street parking on one side only like any other town.

    St. Evelyn do you really expect us to believe you don’t know the commissioners? Isnt that like when you were posting a few months ago that you lived in New Zealand?

    Are you sure the businesses in the town wanted parking meters? There was a meeting when a businenss owner stood up and noted that not all businesses part of the BID and not all businesses agreed with parking meters.

    I agree with anonymous you are a human puppet. Hencefore you will be known as St “RandyPup” Evelyn.

    • What’s obvious is you can’t accept an opposing point of view, nor debate the merits of an argument without sinking to name calling… which is fine by me because you just show yourself for what you are.

      Um, before we move on to your next insightful comment, take a close look at your second sentence in the fourth paragraph. That word… I don’t recognize it…. hmmm, Oh now I understand… It’s missing an apostrophe!! Hey, ya want me to ask my buddy Randy if you can use his spell checker, cuz I know that’s important to ya!

  21. oh and “RandyPup” Evelyn — when you want to type “you are” but want to use a contraction like every other 3rd grader you should use “you’re”, not “your.”

    Maybe if you ask nicely Randy will let you use his spellchecker before you post what he tells you to write.

    • Oh, you are soooo clever! Your mommy must be very proud of you. The way you scan blogs for grammer. My, my.

      Does she cut out your wittier posts and tape them to the fridge and show them to all the other blogger mommies?

  22. who cares about the $50 permit fee. It’s $4.16/month. I’m all for it

    • I care. The $50 parking permit fee just erased any tax “decrease” I might have seen. Why should I have to pay to park in front of my own house?

  23. While it may only be $4.16 for this fee, look at all the other fees that have been increased and what is that now costing a month? I won’t lead anyone to believe I have the dollar and cents figures but I know we have had a number of increases. Does it add up to the “decrease” in taxes?

  24. A $50 overnight parking fee?? What’s next? A fee to cross the street? How about a pay freeze? It’s better than losing your job and it would save a lot of money. Or maybe make Township employees pay part of their health insurance.

  25. I heard they may take Perks Place and re-open it as a toll booth.

  26. Maybe they will make us by sidewalk passes.

    I wonder. What is the thermostat set to in the municipal building this summer? What was it set to over the winter?

  27. regarding the rumored toll booth to be placed at Perks Place — will Betty Band be the toll collector as another paying job to had to her collection?

  28. I’m sure they will find a fellow campaign contributor to collect the tolls. You will need to have exact change or as an option you could buy a *Haddon Township Toll Authority Pass.
    (*town tax and other fee’s may apply)

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