Perth Amboy City Council Deliberates on City Improvement and Budget Concerns

The recent Perth Amboy City Council meeting was dominated by topics including the proposed expansion of the city’s improvement district, the city’s budget, proposed salary increases for city employees, the transparency of employee salaries, and the procurement of pre-employment physicals for police and firefighters. The meeting also recognized city resident and Kansas City Royals signee Christopher Britto and Father Martin, long-serving chaplain for the city’s fire and police departments.

The discussion on the proposed expansion of the city’s improvement district was led by Stuart Coppit of Economic Development Strategies LLC. He highlighted the expansion’s potential benefits and its focus on enhancing the local economy and creating a more welcoming experience for residents and visitors. However, the presentation sparked points of debate among council members, with concerns over potential impact on municipal costs and the specifics of the expansion’s budget. Mayor Helmin J. Caba and the council members sought additional details and clarification regarding the expansion’s objectives and the proposed strategies for economic development and revitalization.

The meeting also addressed the city’s budget and the proposed salary increases for city employees. Councilwoman Milady Tejeda expressed concern that the clerk’s office was overlooked in the budget, leading to an appearance of retaliation due to the lack of significant increases in their department compared to others. Business Administrator Michael Green defended the 2% salary increase for employees, acknowledging the pressures of inflation but explaining that it was what the city could afford at the present time.

A significant portion of the meeting was dedicated to a property in the city where numerous vehicles were being stored, raising concerns about fire hazards and violations. The property owner had allegedly breached fire safety regulations, leading to potential enforcement actions by the fire department. The council expressed its vigilance in ensuring compliance with fire safety standards and emphasized the urgency of addressing the violations to prevent potential hazards.

The council also discussed the procurement of pre-employment physicals for new firefighters and police officers. Questions about cannabis screening for new hires were raised, with clarification that it was not included in the recent procurement. The council further discussed stipends received by the fire chief, clarifying that they were not new stipends but rather carried over from previous roles.

The meeting concluded with a recognition of Christopher Britto, a city resident and Rockers University baseball player who recently signed with the Kansas City Royals. Mayor Caba praised Britto’s accomplishments and contributions to the city. Britto expressed gratitude to the community and his family for their support. Council members commended Britto as a model student and citizen, expressing hope that other kids would mirror his success.

Lastly, the meeting recognized Father Martin, who served the city’s fire and police departments as a chaplain for 12 years. The mayor and council members praised Father Martin’s dedication and presented him with a citation. Father Martin expressed gratitude and reflected on his time in Perth Amboy.

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.

Helmin J. Caba
City Council Officials:
Milady Tejeda, Hailey V. Cruz, Rose B. Morales, Kenneth Puccio, Bienvenido BJ Torres

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