Monday, November 11, 2013

Appointment of 'Hearing Officer', Stockton PILOT Agreement and a Landlord Responsibility Ordinance Top This Weeks Council Agenda

Galloway Township Council has a full agenda set for the Tuesday, November 12, 2013 Council Meeting starting at 6:30 p.m. Beginning with a Ordinance entitled Landlord Responsibility is set for a Public Hearing and final vote for adoption. 

The Ordinance was initiated after resident, Dan Carew voiced his concern at a recent Council Meeting.

Galloway Police previously broke up a large college party on Leeds Point Road in September 2013 and issued several summons for a Noise Ordinance violation. Police discovered over 200 people at that party. The new Ordinance is to hold Landlords responsible after three Quality of Life violations have been issued to the same property in a eighteen (18) month period.

Galloway Council is also set to vote on two (2) Resolutions authorizing the Township Manager to execute two (2) agreements with Richard Stockton College. The first agreement is for a Payment in Lieu of Taxes for the Seaview Stockton Hotel located on US Route 9. Stockton and the Township currently have a three (3) year agreement that is due to expire in December 2013. That Stockton PILOT Agreement was for $300,000 for three (3) years.

The new agreement is also slated for $300,000 for 2014. Arch Liston arbitrarily announced at the October 22, 2013, that he worked on an agreement with Stockton that would increase each year, for three years, starting with $300,000 for 2014, $310,000 for 2015 and $315,000 for 2016.

The second agreement with Richard Stockton College is a Payment in Lieu of Taxes for the other properties that include houses Stockton owns. The Township previously had an agreement with Stockton and is set to renew that agreement at a rate of 20% of the total amount of real property taxes, per property, the College would normally be responsible for, if the property was not tax exempt.

Council also is set to vote on a Resolution to appoint a Hearing Officer for a Personnel Issue. The Resolution lists Robert A. Verry, CPM, MA, MBA as the individual to receive this professional service, that would be issued without competitive bidding. The contract is set at a rate of $120.00 per hour, not to exceed $5,000. Verry specializes as a Disciplinary Hearing Officer, yet the Agenda does not specify the title of "Disciplinary" as the Hearing Officer.

According to Verry's website, he specializes in Police Misconduct, Labor Relations, Internal Affairs, Professional Standards, Guidelines and Disciplines. Verry is the author of a book called Mechanics of a Police Internal Affairs Investigation.  It is our understanding several Internal Investigations are currently being conducted within the Police Department. 

In a request for comment, Detective Sergeant Donna Higbee could not confirm if this appointment was related to any Police Department matter. 

Galloway Township News previously reported, Publisher Lisa Tilton was cooperating with the Galloway Township Police Department and the Atlantic County Prosecutors Office on several investigations.

On July 31, 2013, Galloway Township Police interviewed the Publisher of Galloway Township News regarding an Investigation involving Release of Information. The interview which lasted a little over two minutes, was in reference to an investigation being conducted in order to identify members of the Police Department who allegedly released information without the authority or consent of the Chief of Police. The interview was conducted by Captain Chris Doyle and Detective Sergeant Donna Higbee.

Audio of Interview:

During the interview, Galloway Township News Publisher invoked the NJ Shield Law by shielding the information provided to the Publisher by several sources. A law which provides for a reporter's privilege of information provided by sources. 

At the time, Galloway Township News was notified by several sources, that the Officer who was allegedly placed on administrative leave, was now allegedly suspended without pay. Several sources confirmed the name of the Officer that Chief Patrick Moran allegedly suspended without pay. Moran was not immediately available at that time for comment regarding the status of that Officer. 

Currently, the status of the employee is still allegedly suspended with no Reason of Separation listed, leaving that Officer still an employee of the Township. 

Galloway Township Council Meeting is located 300 E. Jimmie Leeds Roads, in Council Chambers and the meeting will start at 6:30 p.m.


Anonymous said...

Another non bid contract. Who is this one a friend of?

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