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Mayor

Trash Update 8.4.2022

Delran Residents,

The nationwide trash collection issue has impacted Delran and virtually every neighboring town as well as many towns across the country. Our administrator, Delran Public works, and I have been in constant contact with Republic Services demanding they improve. However, their level of service continues to fail to meet their contractual obligation.

We have already fined them over $65,000 this year for not meeting their obligation and we will continue to fine them if their level of service continues to fall short.

This week our attorneys took the first step forward to demand that they meet their contract requirements by serving Republic with a letter putting them “on notice to cure” this situation.

I will keep you updated as we move through this process.

Special Trash Update 6.29.22

Attention Delran Residents,

We want to update you on the ongoing issues related to Municipal Solid Waste collection. First, I want to let you all know that Council and I share your frustration. We have been in contact with and are aware that this is affecting surrounding municipalities as well.

While there was a promise from Republic Services that there would be no change in service during contract renewal despite the increase in cost, that has simply not been the case.

Delran, like many other municipalities, has experienced a considerable problem with the quality of trash collection; including missed collection issues that last for days, trash left on our streets, and leaking hydraulic fluid from poorly maintained vehicles.

We have already fined Republic Services over $50,000 and will continue to leverage fines against them for all missed collections and other violations of the terms of their contract as well as any other options we may find available or necessary, however we also feel that is not enough.

More must be done to resolve these issues and I have been looking at several options moving forward; working with elected officials from other municipalities to explore all possible solutions. Please continue to leave your cans out at the curb until further notice. Again, we share your frustration and are actively working on this issue, and we will provide as much information as is available.    

Mayor’s Update 6.23.22

On June 20th, 2022, it was my honor to attend the Delran Police Department’s annual awards presentation.

Congratulations to the following officers!

Life Saving Award:

Presented to Ptlm. Kevin Pfeffer for his professional performance during a medical emergency on November 9th, 2021, where he responded to a residence for a report of an unconscious female with CPR in progress. Upon arrival, he located the unconscious patient on the floor with no pulse. The defibrillator was applied, and a shock was administrated. Ptlm. Pfeffer resumed CPR while rescue breaths were administered, which resulted in the patient regaining a pulse. Ptlm. Pfeffer’s fast actions helped bring this person back to life.

Life Saving Award:

Was presented to Ptlm. Jill Boyle for her professional performance during a medical emergency on June 10th, 2021, where she responded to a residence for a report of an unconscious male not breathing. Upon arrival, she located the unconscious patient and instructed a female on location to begin chest compressions as she prepared the defibrillator. A shock was administrated and Ptlm. Boyle took over chest compressions until EMS and medics arrived. Ptlm. Boyle’s fast actions helped bring this person back to life.

2021 Mayor’s Award:

It was my great pleasure to present a Mayor’s Award for the second year in a row. This year, the Mayor’s Award was presented to Ptlm. Kevin Pfeffer for consistently demonstrating dedication and service to the community, and for improving outreach and engagement between the police and the people of Delran. Ptlm. Pfeffer was chosen primarily for his diverse responsibilities which include: Crime Prevention and Community Policing, Field Training Officer, Medical Safety Officer, Emergency Medical Technician, Child Safety Seat Technician, and Overdose Reduction Officer where he works with both “Straight to Treatment” and “Operation Helping Hand” in Delran and other towns.

2021 Officer of the Year:

The 2021 Officer of the year is a conscientious, hardworking, and dedicated employee who is a constant asset to this department. This officer has taken on many responsibilities to include Head Firearms Instructor, Crash Investigator, Domestic Violence Liaison, Grant Administration, EMT and Field Training Officer. He leads by example and has the ability to diffuse difficult situations. He is also involved in numerous activities outside of work that positively influence the Delran Police Department. He is not only a great officer, but also a great teacher and role model to our new officers. For these reasons, Patrolman Joseph Horton is the 2021 Officer of the Year. Congratulations to Ptlm. Joseph Horton!

Delran was recently named one of the top 10 towns in Burlington County and Top 25 in New Jersey by South Jersey Magazine. The Delran Police are an integral part of why people love this town. Congratulations and thank you to the entire Delran Police Department for their hard work and dedication to our Delran Family.

Mayor’s Update 06.16.22

Delran Township has once again demonstrated its commitment to the environment by receiving the Arbor Day Foundation’s Tree City USA designation. Over the past years, the Delran Green team, Council and I have worked towards legislation and efforts that will further increase public awareness of the many social, economical, and environmental benefits green space provides.

The Delran Green Team is the real hero on this one. They started with giving out seedlings; and now because of all their hard work with Council we have a new tree ordinance, a tree bank program, and have started talking about planting memorial trees around town.

Started by the Arbor Day Foundation, Tree City USA has been greening up cities and towns across America since 1976 with a nationwide movement that allows communities to manage and expand their public trees. Once a municipality meets certain criteria, they are allowed to apply for Tree City USA designation, for which they receive signage and a flag to display in their town.

It’s not just about the positive recognition we get as a Tree City, it’s about all the real world effects of being proactive about the environment. The benefits of the Green Team’s efforts are substantial for our residents; trees reduce costs for energy, storm water management, even erosion control. They increase property values, increase community pride and are incredibly beneficial to mental and emotional health.

Tree City USA was designed by the Arbor Day Foundation in cooperation with the USDA Forest Service and the National Association of State Foresters to encourage better care of community forests. More than 163 million Americans currently live in Tree City USA communities across all 50 states, Puerto Rico and Washington D.C. More than 950, 000 trees have been planted because of the initiative.

Once again, I would like to congratulate the Delran Green Team on making this happen for our town.

Mayor’s Update 03.09.22

On March 8th, Delran Township took the first step in the State of New Jersey’s We Value our Veterans Program as we honored Sergeant Sean Huryn for his service and presented him with a proclamation and recognition of gratitude.

Sergeant Huryn, a veteran of the Iraq War, retired from the Marine Corps in 2012 after seven years of service to his country, during which time he received numerous Certificates of Commendation, Meritorious Masts, and awards including Expert Marksmanship Badge, The Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Combat Action Ribbon, and Naval Unit Commendation Medal.

Following his retirement, he has continued his dedication to his brothers in arms, his community, and this country as a member of the local VFW Post 3020 where he currently serves as the Senior Vice Commander. Sergeant Huryn and the other VFW 3020 members will be working closely with Councilman Lynn Jeney who has spearheaded Delran’s participation in the We Value our Veterans Program.

This program gives municipalities the opportunity to value and honor the sacrifices, patriotism, and bravery displayed by our men and women who have worn a military uniform through a variety of initiatives. 

For more information on the We Value our Veterans Program, please visit: https://www.nj.gov/military/community/award-grant-charitable-programs/wvov/

Mayor’s Update 01.04.22

First, I would like to thank Assemblywoman Carol Murphy and Commissioner Dan O’Connell for joining us for our first meeting of 2022. Assemblyman  Dr. Herb Conaway and Senator Singleton were unable to attend due to a schedule conflict, but I would like to congratulate all of them on their recent re-elections. 

Senator Singleton, Assemblyman Conaway and Commissioner O’Connell are all Delran Residents and I am personally grateful that they and Assemblywoman Murphy have all offered so much of their time and assistance over the past year with township events and aiding us with accessing county and state services and resources that allow us to better serve our Delran Family members.   

I would like to extend congratulations to Councilman Marlowe Smith on winning his election to finish the last year of his first term as Councilman. The residents of Ward 3 will be represented very well. 

I would also like to extend my thanks to all the employees of Delran township for continuing to work SO hard every day in service to this town, especially during another year facing this unprecedented pandemic with unexpected struggles and loss.

So many of our employees have worked above and beyond their regular duties, often on their own time, to maintain the level of service our residents need and deserve. 

I would also like to thank the Police, EMS, Fire Department and Public Works for their level of responsiveness and devotion to public safety, and congratulate them on being some of the finest examples of the “gold standard” in upholding the oaths they have all taken.

Finally, I would like to take a moment to acknowledge, after 32 years of service, the official retirement of our Township Administrator, Jeff Hatcher. We are grateful for everything he has done for Delran since 1989 and I would be remiss if I didn’t recognize that. 

While we work towards finding his replacement, it is vitally important that our residents know that we, along with senior staff and all township employees and professionals will do everything in our power to make sure that this period of transition is as seamless as possible.

Especially worthy of appreciation for her incomparable level of help  is our Township Clerk, Jamey Eggers.  It’s no secret inside the township building  that Jamey wears MANY hats, but I would like to personally thank her for picking up SO many additional duties during this time, especially after just recently taking on an additional role in the tax office. 

We are so incredibly fortunate to have someone work so hard for this township, and because so much of her job happens behind the scenes; most of our Delran family don’t realize just how fundamental she is in making sure everything goes smoothly.   

Last year, when I was sworn in as Mayor, I shared that “We’ll figure it out” is my family’s motto.

This past year we accomplished many of the goals we had when we started serving our Delran family and there is much more left to do as we continue to figure it all out.

Council and I looked at many of our township ordinances, redrafting and in some cases removing antiquated, confusing or conflicting laws governing Delran in favor of better, more realistic approaches to government. I thank the members of Council and the Solicitor’s office for their hard work.

 

We have begun the process of expanding the diversity and community outreach of our Police department and I am proud to continue working with our newly sworn in Police Chief, James Mitchell, to continue on that path.

We have started to expand our communications with residents to reach more community groups within the town that have been largely overlooked. We have some big plans for what’s coming next with regard to communications and outreach, especially with our seniors. 

I am also very pleased to mention the hiring of our new Construction Official Bill Lunemann, who has been instrumental in bringing the inspection schedule back on track for the residents and local businesses, after a backlog was created due to Covid. We have heard from many residents that they have been happy with this change, and we’re proud to have Bill on the team. 

We have spoken about the Carli Lloyd Event many times before. I will not repeat myself. Except to say that it was a wonderful event and we are very proud of Carli.

The final highlight of 2021 was that we were once again able to celebrate the arrival of Santa and the tree lighting during Winterfest. We have heard from so many residents that they had a wonderful time kicking off their holidays with us, and it was a great way to end the year with the community. My thanks to the volunteers and especially the RAC.

Finally, I am sad to announce that we have once again been forced to make some difficult decisions regarding access to meetings and the building, effective immediately.  The two new strains of Covid; Delta and Omicron, have unfortunately led to a deeply troubling rise in case numbers for Delran, and public safety MUST be our primary concern.

While the availability of the vaccine has made a huge difference and has shown to be effective in decreasing fatalities seen previously; some of the most vulnerable members of our Delran family are still not old enough to be vaccinated and the rate of transmission indicates that these variants are spreading faster than ever.

Delran Township will be closed to the public for all meetings, events, gatherings and any departmental offices not separated by a glass partition until further notice. A complete and detailed list of the new protocols in place is available on the township website and facebook.

Unfortunately, that also means that we will need to delay recognition of Delran’s Golden Regiment, the Delran Soccer Team and the Delran Green Team until a safer time. We are so Delran Proud of all of them and look forward to a time when those proclamations can happen. 

We have resumed Zoom meetings until we feel that we can safely reopen the building and will continue to closely monitor the guidance recommended by the Burlington County Health Department, the NJDOH, and the CDC and share that information as it becomes available.

I would like to urge all residents to be vigilant as well as kind to one another as we continue to move forward. 

  • We will continue to make ourselves available to our residents as much and as safely as possible, for whatever they need,
  • We will share our progress in the many projects we look to accomplish in 2022, and 
  • We will continue to work on the issues that face Delran… and “Figure It Out”… together… as a family.

Mayor’s Update 10.22.21

An Explanation of Municipal Ballot Question #1

Dear Delran Neighbors: Over the last few years you’ve told us that you want us to stop the over development of what little open space we have left. You are concerned about the overcrowding in our schools, the increased traffic congestion, and the condition of our roads.

We have especially heard your concerns about what occurred recently regarding residential developers coming to the township. We have been forced by the courts to allow developers to build more residential dwellings where other recreational and outdoor options would have been much more beneficial to our residents.

We have done much to address these concerns, but there is still much more work to do. Voting YES to current Municipal Ballot Question #1 allows us to continue that work; using the Open Space Preservation Fund after the current program ends in 2024. This referendum is the first and most necessary step needed to finish the work we started for you. Remember, this creates NO additional tax burden to our residents.

In addition to fighting against further housing development, we have heard that you want us to find a place to build a community center in town for our children and seniors to enjoy, create and maintain a multi-purpose turf field, and continue to develop and maintain our other parks and fields. These are just a few of the things that the Open Space Preservation Fund will allow us to do.

Furthermore, this fund gives us the ability to preserve historical sites throughout town, as well as looking at potential physical venues to house the Delran Historical Society, so that they have a place to share their research and photos that make up our Delran Township history. This could offer the possibility of field trips for our children to learn first-hand about our community.

Preventing overcrowding and traffic congestion in our town is important to ALL of us, and we want to see the township preserve the agricultural history and small-town community feel that makes Delran special.

We all want a place to gather for events together as a family and community; such as Delran Night Out and the recent Carli Lloyd Celebration, to provide for the needs of future generations with accessible playgrounds; like Jake’s Place (the first of its kind in Burlington County) and the Buddy-Ball field, and maintain and develop the coming multi-purpose Carli Lloyd Field. All of these wonderful things we have been able to offer to our Delran families happened at Delran Community Park, which was purchased with the assistance of Open Space dollars.

With your help, we can continue to work together to ensure that our Delran community’s vision for the future is realized. Please, vote YES on Municipal Ballot Question #1.

Mayor’s Update 10.19.21

Attention Delran Residents: It has come to my attention that certain rumors, accusations, and statements were made regarding a fellow resident’s corporate sponsorship involvement with the Carli Lloyd Event on October 14th, as it relates to that resident’s current application and variance request before the Township Zoning Board.

First and foremost is it important to note that Zoning Board members may never have made a connection between the application in question and the corporate sponsorship for the event, had it not been posted by a non-resident on social media which made it a topic of conversation.

The Zoning Board is a quasi-judicial body comprised of volunteer citizens that are beholden only to consider if an application meets the qualifications of the existing land use laws of the State of New Jersey and the applicable ordinances of Delran. In the case of an application that includes a request for a variance; they are authorized to grant a variance-based solely on the merits of the application itself and its impact on the town.

They are given guidance during the process of hearing an application from the board’s attorney, engineer, and planner and must make the decision based on whether the applicant demonstrates that the variance would have a positive benefit for the town that outweighs any possible negative impact of approving said variance.

It should be noted that Delran’s land-use laws were enacted consistent with the Master Plan, which was drafted by the Planning Board many years ago. While the Master Plan is subject to periodic reexamination, due to State-mandated requirements; it is an open, public process and, other than the public comment provided during each hearing; it is not subject to the influences of anyone outside of that board.  Private agendas and emotions are not a factor in the process, nor can they be.

Additionally, the applicants, their attorney, and any additional witnesses involved during an application hearing are expected to give sworn testimony, subject to the same penalties of perjury that would be applicable in a deposition or court of law.

Furthermore, the implication that the applicant in question, a long time Delran resident and personal friend of the guest of honor, was attempting to bribe or coerce a volunteer citizen board or circumvent the application process in any way, is not only preposterous; but could easily create standing for their own libel case. It not only could be considered negatively impactful to the business the applicant currently owns, but also to their friends and family (including Carli Lloyd) who have been affected by the defamatory comments.

We would also like to remind all residents that Zoning and Planning Board meetings are subject to the Open Public Meetings Act, N.J.S.A. 10:4-6, commonly known as “Sunshine Laws” as is every Township Council Work Session or Public Meeting.  All of these meetings are recorded, and records of these meetings are kept and made available to all residents who submit a request through the Open Public Records Act, N.J.S.A. 47:1A-1.

Finally, we would like to remind you once again that Zoning and Planning Boards are comprised of your neighbors, who have volunteered their time to serve our town. Discussions implying impropriety or that they are somehow influenced by a corporate sponsorship for a special township event, can only be considered to be absolutely offensive to each and every member of those boards.

Mayor’s Update 9.29.21

Last night, Delran township had to make the difficult decision to award the Municipal Solid Waste collection contract to Republic Trash Services once again. A statement on behalf of myself and the Council can be found here: Statement on Trash Contract

I understand and share the frustration that we are forced to endure such a huge increase in cost for no change in service. I would also like to address a concern regarding the way Municipal Solid Waste companies are approaching bids in ALL townships in NJ.

Some of the large collection companies are buying up smaller trash companies and creating a lack of competition. This results in ALL municipalities in NJ receiving fewer bids or, in this case, only one bid, and those bids are certainly higher than anyone municipality is comfortable with, knowing the financial effect it has on all residents. This is the same thing that happened in Delran. We received only one bid this year. 

That kind of lack of competition for an essential service creates a REAL and serious long-term problem for Delran residents and everyone else in NJ. Therefore, I will be sending letters to our state representatives and reaching out personally to see if there is any way to stop this monopolistic behavior and allow for healthy and fair competition in the trash collection bid process. 

I will do everything I can to continue to preserve the quality services to which our Delran residents are accustomed without allowing the costs of those services to create a financial burden. 

As always, please feel free to reach out to me for anything you need.

Mayor’s Update 6.23.21

On Monday, June 21st, Councilman Lynn Jeney, Councilwoman Parejo, and I were honored to be invited to the Delran Police Department’s 2021 Award Ceremony. It was a great opportunity to show our support for the police and to see them honor one another for their outstanding accomplishments over the last year. In my continued effort to support the Delran Police Department’s inclusive, equitable and positive engagement with our community, I also presented an award for the first time.

After an already distinguished career in public service; from the Delran Emergency Squad to the Delran Fire Department, to law enforcement; Patrolman Michael Lynch contributes in a profound way to the positive impact that the Delran Police Department has on our entire Delran family.  Patrolman Lynch has spent his entire career dedicating himself to this community. 

When he transferred from the Burlington County Sheriff’s Department to our police department in April of 2020, Patrolman Lynch brought an aspirational level of community outreach experience and training with him to serve our residents. 

It was my honor to present him with the first-ever Mayor’s Award – “For consistently demonstrating dedication and service to the community, and for improving outreach and engagement between the Police and the people of Delran.”

I would like to invite Delran residents to join us in congratulating the following officers who received awards:

Patrolman Michael Lynch

  • Exceptional Service Award
  • Mayor’s Award

Detective Robert Fisher

  • Exceptional Service Award 
  • Delran Police Department’s 2021 Officer of the Year 

Patrolman Steve Wallis

  • Life Saving Award
  • Exceptional Service Award

We are so #DelranProud of all of them.