Gloucester City New Mayor and Councilman Take Oath of Office; Permanent City Administrator Job Still Vacant
Sunday, November 28, 2021
GLOUCESTER CITY, NJ(Nov. 28, 2021)(CNBNews)--Prior to the beginning of the November 23 Gloucester City Council meeting, Dayl Baile and Robert Page took the oath of office for mayor and council. Baile was elected on November 2 to the one-year unexpired term of the former mayor, Dan Spencer, and Page was elected to the one-year unexpired term of Patrick Keating. Both positions will be up for election in November 2022. All the seats on the seven-member council are held by Democrats.
In other matters, an Ordinance amending the salary ordinance for the position of Uniformed Police/Administrator/Chief of Police was passed on first reading. The minimum salary for the position is $99,143 to a maximum of $200,000 retroactive to December 1, 2020. Police Chief Brian Morrell was named the acting city administrator in December 2020. He is being paid $195,000 annually to perform both jobs. (copy of ordinance below)
Morrell was asked in March how he was able to do both jobs. "I was told some time ago by a police chief if you have your department set up correctly it can run itself. I trust the people in the leadership positions of our police department to keep it operating efficiently." (paraphrase)
That same month, former mayor Daniel Spencer said, "Brian is the Acting City Administrator. As you know, we advertised for the position in professional government publications and received 19 resumes. We narrowed it down to eight and we are conducting interviews on March 29. "I have appointed a screening committee to conduct the interviews and evaluate the candidates. That committee includes me, Councilman George Berglund, Councilman Pat Keating, Director of Community Development Lori Ryan, City Clerk Vanessa Parent, Chief Brian Morrell, and an impartial experienced Municipal Administrator Joe Gallagher from Winslow Township. Brian was appointed as Acting Administrator because we had to act quickly upon Jack Lipsett’s departure and I felt Brian had strong leadership and managerial skills along with high ethical standards in order to get the job done under some difficult circumstances. I have extreme confidence and faith in Chief Morrell’s professional demeanor in getting the job done while a search for a new permanent City Administrator takes place."
As far as we know the city is still looking for someone to fill the position on a permanent basis.
Once before the City tried to have one individual perform two top-level management positions but that didn't work out too well. As a result, the City lost out on millions in state and federal grants.
Kain began his employment with the City in 1991 as an assistant municipal clerk. Prior to that job he worked in the trades. Approximately 12 years later he was promoted to Municipal Clerk. In 2006 he was named City Administrator by former Mayor Thomas Kilcourse. With that new title, Kain’s salary was increased from $65,000 to $95,000. He also worked as a part-time Township Clerk for Washington Township, Burlington County, at a salary of $13,000 according to a February 11, 2011, CNBNews article.
When the James administration took over in 2007 they found the City lost several million dollars in state and federal grants during the time Kain was administrator because the applications were not filed on time. In December 2008 Kain was removed from his duties as City Administrator and replaced by the administrator, Jack Lipsett. His salary was reduced to $65,000. December 2009 Kain was fired for being absent from work without permission for more than 120 days. His last day of work was July 10, 2009. Because Kain had tenure he had the right to request a hearing before the DCA. The case was heard by Judge Joseph Matone from the Office of Administrative Law (OAL).
RELATED: No Decision in Kain v. Gloucester City Case; Written Closing Arguments Due in 30 Days
Passed on the second reading was an ordinance amending Chapter 55 of the Gloucester City Code specifically 55-13.1 certificate for transfer of property title. The amendment states if a property has any outstanding vacant property fees they must be paid before a certificate of occupancy is issued. (see document below)
Council passed a resolution awarding payments to 26 employees who waived health coverage. New Jersey Statues 40A:10-17.1 permits any municipality which entered into a contract providing health care benefits to waive coverage. In consideration of such waiver, a municipality may pay to the employee annually an amount which shall not exceed 25% or $5000, whichever is less, of the amount saved by the municipality because of the employee's waiver of coverage. The list of those employees and the amount they received is below.
Council approved a resolution authorizing a refund of key deposits for those people who docked their boat at the marina during the summer months. Out of the 17 people who received the $20 refund, only two were from Gloucester City, the other 15 were from out of town.
The contract between the City of Gloucester City and the contractor Think Pavers for the reconstruction of Filmore Street was increased by $26,047 for a total of $265,905.
Council authorized budget transfers from accounts with a surplus to those with a deficit in the amount of $649,526.
Requests were made to the state Director Of Local Government Services to approve the insertion of several revenue items into the 2021 budget. They included the following amounts:
$331,907- NJDOT Municipal Aid Program
8,775 -County of Camden recreation-Proprietors Park Grant
9,859- DeVal Regional Planning TCDI Grant
5,649- NJ Federal Body Armor Grant
2,500-NJ Drunk Driving Enforcement Fund
270.00- SAFER Retention Grant
A resolution authorizing a person-to-person transfer of Plenary Retail Consumption Liquor License heretofore issued to 401 N. Broadway Glo City LLC trading as O'Donnell's 1923 Pub and Grill
The monthly meeting dates of the council for the year 2022 were approved. The annual reorganization meeting will be held on January 6, 2022, at 7 PM in council chambers 313 Monmouth Street. Anyone who wants a copy of those dates can obtain them from the city clerk at a cost of $5 or they print the list from the CNBNews article found below with other documents.
The new mayor named council members to committees for the remainder of 2021. See below.
Council authorized the payment of bills from October 28 to November 23 in the amount of $2,688,409.
The salary ordinance for the position of Uniformed Police/Administrator/Chief of Police passed on the first reading on November 23. Second reading and public hearing December 23, 2021.
The ordinance amending Chapter 55 of the Gloucester City code passed on second reading at the November 23 council meeting.
Council passed a resolution awarding payments to 26 employees who waived health coverage.
The 2022 monthly meetings of the governing body. Reorganization meeting January 6, 2022
Mayoral appointments of councilmembers to various committees for 2021