Englewood Cliffs Council Grapples with $500K Penalty Amidst Key Infrastructure Concerns

In a recent Englewood Cliffs Borough Council meeting, members addressed a range of pressing issues, the most controversial of which was a penalty approaching $500,000 due to record-keeping errors. The council also discussed challenges surrounding the town’s infrastructure, the 911 system’s operational issues, traffic safety, and concerns about the town’s employment situation.

Tensions ran high as the council confronted a penalty tied to problems in providing data and record-keeping. The fines, close to half a million dollars, were attributed to council members not completing certifications and an attorney’s oversight, which resulted in a delay. One member voiced their frustration, saying, “We have all these fines because we have council members that refuse to do certifications.” The emphasis on accountability was clear, with another adding, “There’s no excuse to not follow the law.”

In addition to financial concerns, the town’s infrastructure was a major topic. With reports of “effluent coming up through the sanitary sewers,” the council recognized the urgency in addressing the maintenance of the sanitary sewers and stormwater systems. These issues, some of which have been longstanding, are particularly concerning with upcoming developments in the town that could further strain the system. The council acknowledged these challenges, confirming ongoing discussions with the borough administrator and DPW superintendent.

Operational issues with the 911 system were another focal point. The system, plagued by vendor failures for nearly two years, saw potential for change. While switching the 911 response system to the county would be more cost-effective, concerns about the efficiency and responsiveness of the county system were voiced. Nonetheless, the police chief largely favored the move due to the persistent issues with the current vendor.

Traffic safety was also on the agenda, with specific mentions of stop signs needed around Johnson and Sylvan Avenue. The potential for the town engineer’s involvement was broached to assess these concerns.

Further discussions addressed the town’s employment situation. Astonishment was expressed over the absence of applications for job posts, with a strong call for better advertising and translation to remedy this.

Among other topics, the council touched on park improvements, fire department responsibilities, and concerns about the audio quality during meetings.

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City Council Members:
Englewood Cliffs

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