City Council's Final 2013 Meeting Set for Monday

Five things to know about Ocean City's council meeting on Dec. 30.

City Council will meet for the final time in 2013 in a public meeting at 1 p.m. Monday, Dec. 30, at the Ocean City Free Public Library. Council has a full agenda, but here are five things that might be of special interest.

  • 10th Street Marina Plan: City Council in November gave final approval to a redevelopment plan that changes zoning to accommodate a proposed marina, fuel dock and restaurant on the bay near 10th Street. But the ordinance that council passed included a clerical error. A new ordinance under consideration on Monday corrects the error.
  • Second Street Outfall Pipe: City Council will consider a resolution awarding a $201,000 contract to Ocean Construction LLC of Marmora to replace the outfall pipe on the beach at Second Street. The new pipe will have triple the capacity of the old one and could help alleviate flooding on nearby streets.
  • Summer Soccer Camps: The Ocean City Nor'easters amateur soccer club was the sole bidder for using public fields to run summer soccer camps. City Council will vote to approve a contract that calls for the Nor'easters to pay $1,850 per week for the use of city facilities.
  • Shared Dispatch Services: City Council will vote to continue a shared services agreement with Upper Township for emergency dispatch calls. Upper Township will pay Ocean City about $223,000 in 2014 and similar amounts in the following four years for providing the services. A separate resolution asks City Council to approve $32,000 for improved dispatch software.
  • Commission Appointments: City Council will consider resolutions appointing Randy Clark, Mikenzie Helphenstine, Don Hepner, Bonnie Hyson, Catherine Kline, William Parker and John Zaborowski to the Advisory Council on Physical Fitness and Sports; Joe Clark, Michael Lehman and Mary Louise Hayes to the Shade Tree Committee; and Frank Donato to the Ocean City Lifeguard Pension Commission.
For the full text of all agenda items and supporting documentation, download the City Council  Agenda Packet.
OCnjOC December 28, 2013 at 06:51 PM
the courts have just found that the agendas are not legally sufficient without the attachments. The case is captioned David W. Opderbeck v. Midland Park Board of Education, Docket No. BER-L-8571-13. I believe this means the information packet supplied to council members has to be published at least 48 hours prior to the meeting.
OCnjOC December 28, 2013 at 06:51 PM
http://ogtf.lpcnj.org/2013/2013362pV/OpderbeckOpinion.pdf is the case decision
Mr. B December 28, 2013 at 08:53 PM
Judge Doyne\'s ruling is not binding on other courts
OCnjOC December 28, 2013 at 11:09 PM
Mr. B, are you suggesting the City should spend thousands in legal fees to try to fight it rather than inform the public? What are your buddies hiding? Are you suggesting citizens should go through the expense and burden to file in every county in the State just to get access to attachments to agendas that are readily available anyway?
OCnjOC December 28, 2013 at 11:23 PM
Just to let people know how the scam works. The City Solicitor will give legal advice that the City should not comply with some law, order, case decision, etc. Then when the City gets sued the lawyer who gave the advice gets to cash in and get legal fees. Out former mayor (who is also a lawyer) used to do it at the same time he was mayor. He represented a small town of less than 200 people and he would get them to submit insurance claims for the legal fees. There is a law in place that limits the payments to $17,500 without City Council approval. If you look at the legal bills you will often find these frivolous/scam lawsuit expenses almost exactly $17,500. That is what Ocean City paid to its former City solicitor in order to refuse to answer OPRA requests via e-mail. The NJ Government records Council told them they had to send replies via e-mail. the City refused, paid $17,500 in legal fees, and then agreed to do it once the matter was in court in front of the judge. The matter was reported to the County prosecutor and a request was made to have the matter investigated for embezzlement. It never went before City Council because the bill was $17,500 exactly.
Mr. B December 29, 2013 at 09:13 AM
I was suggesting any of that, all I was pointing out was that it was a non-binding decision. I thought they way you presented it was a little misleading and left one with the perception that it was now a state law and OCNJ was in violation. I think if the City wants to argue it they have the right to, just as you would if a law was presented to you that you didnt agree with that you would have your right to argue it. by following your thought process, we should adopt all laws from all neighboring towns?
OCnjOC December 29, 2013 at 11:32 AM
You are such a shill, nothing was said about laws of neighboring tows." Ocean City should follow a Superior Court's reasonable ruling to provide access to public information rather than risk a lawsuit and legal fees over the ridiculous stance that they should keep this public information secret. I believe that spending exorbitant legal fees for such a purpose is tantamount to embezzlement because no reasonable person would spend their own funds in that manner when they had budget issues. Yes, this should be done even if the court decision happens to be in another county within NJ and I believe that is what reasonable people would do. If someone were to authorize funds not belonging to them for such a purpose I think that is unreasonable and they should be investigated for criminal actions.
Mr. B December 29, 2013 at 11:45 AM
again, all I was pointing out was that it was non-binding. You can continue to quantify your position all you want, but in the end, it's up to each town. no laws are being violated so you have no argument there.
Douglas Bergen (Editor) December 29, 2013 at 12:00 PM
Just a point of information (not sure it's clear from the context of these City Council advance stories), but the City Council agenda packets are always posted for the public 48 hours in advance of meetings. They're available on ocnj.us under the "City Meeting Calendar" link (under "Government"). http://www.ocnj.us/index.cfm?fuseaction=content.eventCalendar&dateBegin=1/1/2013&view=text&typeID=330,172,332#calendarFocus That's what's linked above.
OCnjOC December 29, 2013 at 03:32 PM
They often change the agenda with less than 48 hours to go.


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