On Thursday-6-May the Bogota Borough Council held their first meeting for the month of May.
The meeting started with a large number of resident participating in the Citizens comment session. The topic ranged from adjusting the brightness of the LED sign in front of the Recreation Centre. Re-paving of streets after unity work has been done. Fallen trees from the CSX Railroad tracks right of way. And the work done in Teaneck on the 520 Palisade Ave. The majority of the comment dealt with a proposed Recycling Centre at the North end of Feller Place. This would be located on Borough property near the entrance to the Bogota Swim Club.
This has been in the planning stages for a number of years in order to replace the temporary structure at 144 Cross St off of River Rd. This location is on the property currently privately owned, and is subject to re-development. If the Borough can not continue to use this location the centre will need to be moved to a new location. Funding for a new Recycling Centre will be obtain by issuing of bonds and environmental grants. Since designs and construction of this new building has not been approved by Bogota Council it is not included in the 2021 Budget.
Some of the concerned voiced by the residents included the location being adjacent to private homes. The amount of traffic by the increased number of vehicles entering and exiting the complex. And if there could be any health hazards to the nearby residents and people visiting the Bogota Swim Club.
When public comment was closed the Major and Council addressed as many issues as possible. The Borough Administrator said that he and the Recreation Director will see how to set the sign, in front of the Recreation Centre, on a timer to turn off from the hours of 11:00p to about 6:00a. The Mayor said he will talk with the Bogota Code Enforcement Officer so that CSX can be informed of the situation. The Mayor also said he would inquire to the unity company about the re-paving. And the Borough Attorney said he is contact with the Teaneck government about at 520 Palisade Ave.
Discussion of the proposed Recycling Centre did include the fact it is not part of the 2021 Budget, and has not been approved. The Borough Administrator did agree that a town hall meeting to explain and show preliminary designs of the structure will be presented. No date has been set for meeting.
The Council then had a presentation from the Borough Bond Council. This was to inform the Council of the status of the current bonds issued by the Borough. He continued with saying he is in need of clarification by Council in order to work an a bond application for the proposed new Fire House and new Fire truck.
The Borough Attorney asked the Council on guidelines to create an ordinance concerning the State of New Jersey’s “Cannabis Regulatory and Marketplace Modernization Act” This law will allow for the selling and production of cannabis products in the State of New Jersey. The Governing body has until August 2021 to create their ordinances governing the Sales, or production of cannabis products within their borders. If no action is taken then any type of cannabis establishments would be permitted to operate in a town. The members of Council agreed that a total ban on the selling and production of cannabis products in the Borough. This can be changed, or updated at any point in the future. The Council also approved to authorized the paving of Second Place.
Then the Council moved to the Consent Agenda. All these item were passed by unanimous vote. Next came the introduction of the 2021 Municipal Budget. The highlights of the new budget is the Borough will have a 0% tax increase. There was one amendment to the budget that was present to Council in April. This was to move funds from the Community Enhancement that are given to the Borough from the developer of the Atwater Complex so it can be used as revenues in the 2021 Budget. Then the Borough Accountant explained these funds could be restored to the Community Enhancement when the Federal Government passes the American Rescue Plan (ARP) now in Congress. The ARP is a bill to proved additional financial relief to State and local Government. The Borough Accountant estimates Bogota would receive over $800,000 from this bill. The funds are scheduled to be paid equally over the next two years. He recommended that once the Borough receives the first payment the Governing Body can vote to restore the funds used in the Budget back to the Community Enhancement. The amendment was passed by a 5-1 vote. The 2021 Budget was passed by unanimous vote.
In his remarks Bogota Mayor Chris Kelemen informed the Council that the Memorial Day Parade was forced to be cancelled for a second year in a row. Mayor Kelemen did say that the annual Remembrance Ceremony on Memorial Day will take place and start approximately at 11:00a. He also announced that the New Bridge Medical Centre will be holding a covid testing and vaccination event on Tuesday-11-May. This will take place in the Ridgefield Park section of Overpeck Park. This will begin with testing at 10:00a and vaccination at 1:00p. This will be free to resident of Bergen County. Proof of Bergen County residency is required so please bring your driver’s license, utility bill, pay stub, or work ID. If you have an insurance card, also bring that with you. Residents can pre-register, but walk-ups will also be excepted. For more information please visit : https://www.newbridgehealth.org/covid-19-vaccine-information/
Other announcement were a reminder that on Saturday-22-May, the annual Shred day event will be held. And the Bogota Public Library will be holding a used book sale at the same location.
The next Bogota Borough Council meeting will be on Thursday-20-May. This is scheduled to start at 7:30p. Log-in information will be posted at a later date.
For additional information please visit their website at: https://www.bogotaonline.org/