Mayor & Council News
Mayor McPartland Statement in regard to the proposed adoption of Ordinance 2020-005, the Re-Development Ordinance for the Hess Site at the September 29, 2020 Mayor and Council Meeting
Tonight, we take another step towards the redevelopment at the center of town. As many of you will remember, we signed a historic agreement regarding the future development of the Hess site last year. That agreement required the Borough to begin a process that will ultimately lead to the acquisition of the entire western parcel of that site. Most notably, (if you recall) the developer is transferring the entire western portion of the property, valued at approximately $15 million dollars (or more) at zero cost to taxpayers. This transfer of property will ultimately become the site of a brand new, state of the art, school for our children, and a massive influx of revenue for the Borough.
Since that agreement was reached, we referred the matter to the planning board which held several hearings on whether the property qualified as an area in need of redevelopment. Despite being a member of the planning board, I recused myself so that the process would play out without any influence. The board held three hearings and ultimately agreed that the property should be declared an area in need of redevelopment. I was happy to see so many people participate in the hearings and even happier to see that during the final meeting not a single member of the public spoke out against that determination.
Following our acceptance of the planning board’s recommendation in July, we asked the Planning Board to review the entire redevelopment plan. They had another hearing and provided recommendations to the redevelopment plan. Our professionals have reviewed those recommendations, some of which we will incorporate into the redevelopment plan and some we will not. We thank the Planning Board for its work both on the initial area in need study and in their review of the redevelopment plan.
Further, the settlement we reached laid the groundwork to settle our affordable housing case. This site will provide for a substantial portion of our affordable housing obligation and allowed us to reach an agreement with Fair Share Housing, prevent any builders remedy suits, and set the Borough up for future compliance.
Tonight, we will vote to authorize the redevelopment plan and pass an ordinance in furtherance of that plan, we will designate a redeveloper. This will allow for the developer to develop their site plan in accord with the plan, and brings us another step closer to a new school for our children along with open space. Over the last several years, it has become obvious that the school system needs, and our students deserve, a new school. We have worked with the school system to support them in their financial needs, and now we are working with them in supporting their capitol needs.
Mayors Statement Regarding 615/PILOT
Back in November, when the 615 settlement was announced, among the many items in the settlement was a proposed redevelopment agreement which referred to a future PILOT agreement when the 615 River Road apartments are constructed. The Borough brought in its Financial Planner, NW Financial, to review the plan and to negotiate the PILOT terms. Under the proposed PILOT agreement analysis done by the financial planner, the Borough could expect to receive approximately $150 million in payments during the first thirty years of the project whereas with traditional taxation, the Borough would receive about $86.5 million in taxes. In summary, the Borough receives nearly $64 million more in revenue under the PILOT agreement.
The Financial Agreement Associated with this site was part of a complex settlement of litigation that went on for years. The Settlement Agreement, which had many terms and conditions including the proposed terms of the Financial Agreement, was published, discussed and adopted at a public meeting. The terms of the Settlement which include the terms of the Financial Agreement are very beneficial to the municipality. The Redeveloper will pay nearly $190 million of PILOT payments over the 30-year term of which nearly $150 million will be sent to the municipal budget. After stabilization, the Redeveloper will pay between 80% and 100% of conventional taxes. As the PILOT reduces the County share of the revenue to around 9% from 17%, the economics are very favorable to the municipal taxpayer. As the municipality will be receiving over $60 million more than it would receive under conventional taxes, it will be able to assist the board of education during the term of the PILOT. The Borough plans on setting aside an appropriate proportional amount of funds for the Board of Education during the term of the PILOT.
The Council has repeatedly stated that it was its intention to share those funds, to the extent appropriate and allowable with the school system. The school system, in addition to receiving those funds, will receive another benefit under the settlement agreement, that being the use of the western parcel of property upon which it is expected that they will build a new, state of the art school that will ensure the future success of the school system. That property is valued at between $12-$15 million dollars and will cost the school board and taxpayers nothing (ZERO DOLLARS) to acquire. We will receive the entire western portion of the property for our new school.
In addition, this agreement will allowed the Borough to settle its long and costly litigation with 615 River Road and additional court cases with the Fair Share Housing Center. In the 615 settlement agreement the developer will be required to construct up to 200 affordable housing units which will allow Edgewater to have enough units to satisfy its constitutional obligation on affordable housing.
Follow up from the “Coffee with the Mayor” Meeting
Saturday, January 25, 2020
Attendees: Council President, Michael Henwood (filling in for Mayor McPartland who had a family commitment). 10 Edgewater residents.
Upcoming Census Oversight:
A resident inquired into whether Edgewater was putting together a Census Oversight Committee similar to Fort Lee’s - to ensure that the Census count is accurate for a host of reasons that benefit Edgewater if correct, and negatively affect Edgewater if the Census Count is not correct.
Follow up: On Wednesday, February 12, 2019 at 5:00pm at the Edgewater Borough Hall Conference Room, there will be a presentation by Steven Bednar, our US Census Partnership Specialist who will do a presentation on the formation of Edgewater’s Complete Count Committee (CCC). Everyone is encouraged to attend and join the committee. More details posted on Edgewaternj.org.
Edgewater Municipal Website:
A resident inquired, and several other residents agreed that the Borough Website is difficult to navigate and locate items on the calendar pages.
Follow up: Borough Administrator Greg Franz and the Borough Web administrator have been working with the original Web Design Company since late last year on a new release of the website with easier navigation tabs that get you quicker and easier to the desired information needed. In addition, there will be new emphasis on calendar content for complete meeting and activity listings. Look for the new release soon.
General condition of residential sidewalks throughout the Borough:
Follow up: The Borough Administrator has put together a public service notice/announcement to all home owners and businesses of the requirement that they maintain the sidewalks along their property in good order. In addition, during the repaving of Borough streets via the Community Development Block Grant funding, some sidewalks may be addressed however, repair and maintenance is the responsibility of the property owner.
Video Taping of Council Meetings:
Follow up: The live feed or taping of Council Meetings is discussed by the Council often. Quite frankly, the reason most adjacent towns do not provide any taping options is not a function of cost, but the ability to secure content from being manipulated and posted inaccurately on Social Media etc. That being said, the Mayor and Council have agreed to review the current available options and discuss over the next couple of months.
It takes 3 mins to cross the Hudson from NJ to W125th St. piers, but we haven't had ferry service there for 50+ yrs.— Mark D. Levine (@MarkLevineNYC) September 3, 2019
It's time to fix that--to relieve traffic, improve air quality & open up econ opportunity.
Great mtg w/ Edgewater Mayor Mike McPartland about making this happen. pic.twitter.com/5K714xGshw
Mayor Michael McPartland welcomed Bergen County Executive James Tedesco and Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto to Edgewater today April 7, 2017 as they announced legislation to improve construction codes in response to the Avalon fires in Edgewater and Maplewood. Assemblyman Prieto along with Assemblywoman Jimenez and Assemblyman Eustace will be sponsoring legislation to require fire sprinklers in all areas of a building including the non-livable areas such as attics and crawl spaces as well as masonry fire walls.
Full Video of the press conference can be seen on the borough FaceBook page: https://www.facebook.com/EdgewaterNJ/videos/1453761554668855/
Read Mayor McPartland's article in the "Initiation by Fire " in the New Jersey League Municipalities March edition by clicking the picture below... 2016 MUNICIPAL BUDGET– The Governing Body introduced the 2016 Municipal Budget on Monday March 21, 2016 that will result in an average $29.00 decrease to the Edgewater property owner compared to last year. Remember, when you receive your tax bill, it includes three taxing entities, municipal, schools, and county. The total appropriations for budget year 2015 were $26,740,532, a 1.64% increase from the previous year. The total appropriations for budget year 2016 will be 28,051,926, a 4.67% increase from the 2015 budget year. The tax levy, or the amount to be raised in taxes in 2015 was $21,173,819, an increase of $793,888 or 3.90%. The 2016 tax levy will only increase $362,954, or 1.71% from the previous year. Some of the main appropriation increases are salaries and wages at $136,024, $70,500 for insurances, $47,000 for utilities, the mandatory library contribution of $74,590, pension payments of $97,383 whereby the state continues to defer their mandatory payments however towns must still make there’s, public safety expenses of $59,320, and $320,000 for reserve for uncollected taxes, the amount we need to budget in consideration of taxpayers who do not pay taxes on time. The Mayor and Council are always aggressively looking at ways to reduce cost. This year, the Mayor and Council negotiated with our employees, a change in health care providers, that will result in a potential savings of close to 20% from the previous year, savings realized by the Borough, savings realized to the employee, since all employees now contribute to the cost of medical insurance, and savings that gets passed on to the taxpayer. Edgewater was fortunate enough to receive state fiscal aid in the amount of $750,731, the same amount as last year; this money will go directly to tax relief, or less the amount needed to be raised by taxes. On the typical residential property assessment of $460,245 the average amount of municipal taxes to be paid will be $3,523, a $29.00 decrease from the amount paid last year. A public hearing on the introduced budget will tentatively be scheduled for May 16.
Mayor McPartland speaks at business breakfast meeting at City Place January 21st 2016