Ogdensburg passes bond ordinance Ogdensburg. Bond will improve Plant Street from Passaic Avenue to Brooks Flat Road for $380,000.
PHOTOS BY VERA OLINSKIBorough Attorney Robert McBriar recommends a hold harmless agreement if the borough decides to provide boats on Heater's Pond.
By Vera Olinski
The Ogdensburg Council unanimously passed a bond ordinance on July 8 to improve Plant Street, from Passaic Avenue to Brooks Flat Road. The bond will assign $380,000 for cost and downpayment, in order to use a state grant authorizing bonds and notes to finance the project. Councilwoman Brenda O’Dell was absent. Later, after passage, resident Elliott Honig asked for further clarification about the improvements. Mayor George Hutnick said the ordinance is related to seeking a New Jersey state grant for main thoroughfares through Ogdensburg, which connect in and out of the borough. He said the borough is looking for grant money to upgrade Passaic Avenue and Brooks Flat Road; and they already have a grant for Plant Street, which needs to be used to fix the road within two years. Other business Hutnick said he has received an unusual amount of complaints regarding property maintenance of abandoned homes, vehicles, and overgrown grass. Now, he said, residents are noticing rodents, which they did not have when adjoining properties were maintained. Hutnick said he gave a list of addresses to code enforcement, and most of the addresses are repeat offenders. Councilman Anthony Nasisi said the borough hall roof will go out for sealed bids. Furthermore, Nasisi said, due to issues, the borough will also receive more bids for the Historical Building steam boiler. Finally, he said, they received the certificate of approval for the finished Wausau street tank abandonment project. Councilwoman Rachel Slater reported all the hydrant flushing is finished. Council President Michael Nardini said while the hydrant flushing took place, the DPW also replaced pressure reducing valves and helped cut grass. Going forward, he said, electric and other minimal work will be done for probably less than $100,000 in the Heater’s Pond Lifeguard and Swim Building. Borough Attorney Robert McBriar said he has reviewed the proposed draft of the Employee Handbook and will propose draft changes to Hutnick and Slater to review including: an updated anti-discrimination policy, with possible training through the insurance carrier, an Americans with Disabilities policy of reasonable accommodations, and an electronic mail, internet access, and social media policy. Nasisi said Land Use Chairman Bob Armstrong agrees with the proposed Heater’s Pond improvements of picnic tables and retaining wall. They do not need construction permits, Nasisi said, because the proposed retaining wall is under four feet. Construction, he continued, could probably start in the fall, and he suggested looking for donations. Hutnick later explained the borough is considering areas where the hill at the “Welcome to Heater’s Pond” sign drops down to be made useful for picnic tables and grills. He added, the picnic area would be for residents who did not want to go to the pavilion further in back. Nasisi also proposed the idea of paddle boats and boat racks at Heater’s Pond for residents to use. Hutnick said he confirmed with insurance that anything the borough provides, which is available for public use, becomes a borough liability. If the borough provides boats, he said, they would need to be new certified boats, along with certified life jackets in multiple sizes, a trained individual to instruct residents about boat use, and boat safety inspections. He added residents can still use their own boats in the pond. McBriar strongly recommended a hold harmless agreement if the borough provides boats on Heater’s Pond. He further explained, procuring a boat and making it available to residents makes the borough responsible for ensuring safety.