Hillsdale Borough Council Addresses Police Department Additions, Community Projects, and Ordinance Updates

In a recent session, the Hillsdale Borough Council recently convened to oversee the swearing-in of new police officers, discuss community projects, and review a series of ordinances that will impact the local area. The meeting saw the addition of three new officers to the Hillsdale Police Department, the appointment of members to the planning board, environmental commission, and library trustees, and the adoption of ordinances pertaining to recreation department fees and salaries.

The council meeting opened with an official ceremony to welcome three new officers to the Hillsdale Police Department. Family members of the newly sworn-in officers were present, which added a personal dimension to the proceedings. Lieutenant Camp Rell voiced the department’s dedication to the community and expressed appreciation for the ongoing support.

Following the ceremony, the council transitioned to appointments for various committees and boards. A notable disclosure was made by a council member regarding a personal connection to a nominee for the library trustees. All appointments were approved.

During the approval of past meeting minutes, a correction was requested to accurately reflect a community member’s comment. The correction was agreed upon and the minutes were amended.

The meeting also covered several community requests, such as Hanukkah decorations, a street name request, and an annual carnival hosted by the Hillsdale Volunteer Fire Department. The latter was approved for May 2024, while the street name request was referred to the naming committee. Updates on various community projects were provided, including paving projects and renovations at Centennial and Memorial Fields.

Councilwoman Lundy updated on Environmental Commission activities, including the tree ordinance revision and the Beachwood Trail project. She also mentioned the upcoming annual seed distribution and progress on field renovation projects. Councilman Osso reported on the Recreation Department’s efforts, including the search for a new Recreation Director and plans for a Special Olympics New Jersey fundraiser.

The Borough Administrator discussed the Ambulance Corp’s activities, the number of service calls, average response times, and the need for a social services liaison position. There was also a proposal to reimburse for mailboxes destroyed during snow plowing operations.

The council discussed relocation options for the Department of Public Works (DPW) administrative offices due to flooding issues at the current location and the exploration of shared space with surrounding towns. Concerns about parking at the proposed community center were also addressed, with the council acknowledging the need for adequate parking planning.

The adoption of Ordinance 2401, establishing recreation department program and summer camp fees, was a focal point of the meeting. An amendment to include a conditional COVID-19 fee was accepted. Ordinance 2402, setting salaries for the recreation department, was adopted unanimously following a public hearing.

The consent agenda, containing multiple ordinances, was approved without objections. During the public comment period, residents expressed concerns about the lack of Hanukkah celebrations in Veterans Park.

The session concluded with council members extending congratulations to the new police officers and acknowledging the opening of a new urgent care facility, while also recognizing the services of an existing facility.

Did we get something wrong? Let us know.
Michael Sheinfield
City Council Officials:
John Escobar, Abby Lundy, Justin Fox, Janetta Trochimiuk, Clemente Osso, John Ruocco

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