Chatham Township Welcomes Officer, Debates Colony Pool Fees

The Chatham Township Council meeting on February 27th, 2024, was marked by the swearing-in of Colette Murphy as a new police officer and discussions on the Colony Pool fee structure, among other community-focused topics. Officer Murphy, with a background as a sheriff’s investigator and an emergency dispatcher, was celebrated during the ceremony attended by her family. The council also engaged in a detailed debate over the pricing for Colony Pool memberships, ultimately deciding on a 5% increase to cover rising costs, despite some concerns over the necessity of a rate hike given a reported reduction in pool operating costs.

The meeting saw a unanimous vote to approve Resolution 2024-66, but not before a debate on the price structuring for Colony Pool memberships. The council proposed a $606 family membership rate for residents, citing financial struggles of other pools with odd pricing structures. Despite the suggested increase, some council members raised questions due to a 30% drop in the pool’s salaries and operating costs from the previous year. The discussion also considered the potential benefits of an early bird promotion for guest passes and the necessity of accurate data to inform future pricing decisions.

In addition to the pool fee discourse, the council addressed the appointment of a non-resident to the Colony Pool Advisory Committee. The selection was controversial due to the individual’s prior negative online comments about the pool and queries regarding the requirement that committee members be paid pool members. Despite these concerns, the council moved forward with the committee assignments approval.

The council’s focus on community amenities and fiscal responsibility extended to other resolutions as well. They backed a grant application for playground equipment replacement at Colony Pool, despite some inaccuracies in the application regarding the ground covering and safety surface. The council also agreed to review the green grounds and maintenance policy, with a particular interest in tree conservation on municipal property. This measure was passed unanimously.

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Furthermore, the council addressed the local Recreation Improvement grant for Colony Pool, voted to support a green grounds and maintenance policy, and approved an amendment to a developer’s agreement aimed at cost control and obligation fulfillment. These discussions underscore the council’s broader focus on responsible management of community resources and infrastructure development.

The meeting also featured discussions on various community programs, including the Historical Society’s plans for America’s 250th birthday, the completion of roofing at Shanike Field in preparation for spring events, and the Chatham Maria Chamber of Commerce’s wellness fair offering free health screenings and fitness classes. The council commended the Environmental Commission for its sustainable initiatives and mentioned the “Adopt the Drain” program, a collaborative effort between the commission and the Department of Public Works.

The tax assessor presented a townwide revaluation mandated for the 2027 tax year, with key dates to be listed on the township’s website. Reports from the Township Committee covered promotional activities and changing room space needs, while the Library announced its annual book sale and the retirement of its assistant director.

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The meeting’s public hearing segment was brief, with no members of the community raising hands or submitting written comments. The council proceeded to adopt a stormwater control ordinance to meet state standards and introduced ordinances for floodplain management and movie theater inspections, setting public hearings for a future date.

Note: This meeting summary was generated by AI, which can occasionally misspell names, misattribute actions, and state inaccuracies. This summary is intended to be a starting point and you should review the meeting record linked above before acting on anything you read. If we got something wrong, let us know. We’re working every day to improve our process in pursuit of universal local government transparency.

Mayor:
Stacey Ewald
City Council Officials:
Michael Choi, Mark Lois, Jen Rowland, Marty McHugh

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