Borough of Washington, NJ
Warren County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
All powers of the Borough and the determination of all matters of policy should be vested in the Borough Council, except as may be otherwise provided by the Charter and statutes of New Jersey. There shall be a Borough Council, elected in accordance with the terms of N.J.S.A. 40:69A-114, as amended,[1] which shall be comprised of seven members, one of whom shall be elected Mayor by the Council.
[1]
Editor's Note: N.J.S.A. 40:69A-114 was repealed by P.L. 1979, c. 83, § 1 (§ 40A:16-23), effective April 26, 1979; see now N.J.S.A. 40A:16-4 and 40A:16-5.
[Amended 1-8-1974 by Ord. No. 34-73]
The members of the Council shall receive such compensation as may be provided in the Salary Ordinance[1] and, in addition, any lawful expenses incurred on behalf of the Borough shall be reimbursed upon claim, certification and proof. Said claim is to be processed the same as any other submitted to the Borough.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 17, Salaries and Compensation.
[Amended 10-3-2000 by Ord. No. 10-2000]
A. 
Mayor shall be elected directly by majority vote of the voters of the municipality, and the Mayor shall serve for a period of four years beginning on January 1 next following his or her election.
[Amended 12-7-2004 by Ord. No. 19-2004]
B. 
A Deputy Mayor shall be elected as provided by law and shall serve for a term of two years until his successor is elected and qualifies. A Deputy Mayor may not serve two consecutive terms as Deputy Mayor.
A. 
A Mayor, or Deputy Mayor acting in his place, shall have all the power and duties as vested in him by Charter, applicable general law and this chapter. In the absence of the Mayor, said powers and duties are hereby vested in the Deputy Mayor. In the event neither the Mayor nor Deputy Mayor is present at a duly called meeting, regular or special, the Clerk shall open the meeting, and the Council shall elect a temporary Chairman to act as Mayor for said meeting, who shall possess all of the powers as provided for the Mayor as long as he serves as temporary Chairman.
B. 
The Mayor shall expressly have the following duties:
(1) 
Preside at all meetings of the Council.
(2) 
Have a voice and vote in Council proceedings.
(3) 
Countersign all bonds, notes, deeds, contracts and other official documents of the municipality.
(4) 
Provide and keep decorum at public meetings.
(5) 
Make those appointments specifically provided for in the Charter and applicable general laws.
(6) 
Serve as a member of the Library Board.
(7) 
Serve as a member of the Planning Commission.
(8) 
Perform all other duties prescribed in the Charter and the applicable general laws.
C. 
The Mayor shall not have the power of veto (N.J.S.A. 40:69A), but shall vote on all issues requiring roll call vote.
[Amended 9-8-1981 by Ord. No. 13-81; 2-23-1982 by Ord. No. 1-82]
A. 
Organizational meetings. Organizational meetings of the newly elected Council will be held on the first Tuesday of January unless the first Tuesday shall fall on January 1, in which case the organizational meeting shall be held on the first Wednesday of January. The meeting shall commence at 8:00 p.m. at the Borough Hall.
[Amended 1-8-1974 by Ord. No. 34-73; 3-15-1988 by Ord. No. 6-88]
B. 
Regular meetings. Regular meetings of the Borough Council shall be held at least twice in each month at the Borough Hall at such time as the Borough Council may designate by resolution, except that, by resolution, the Council may dispense with one or more meetings otherwise scheduled during the months of July and August.
[Amended 1-28-1986 by Ord. No. 1-86]
C. 
Special meetings. The Mayor may at any time and, upon the written request of any two Councilmen, shall call a special meeting. The request and call for a special meeting shall specify the purpose, and no other business may be conducted other than that specified. The Mayor's call for a special meeting shall be filed with the Clerk and served upon each Council member at least 48 hours prior to the time at which the meeting is called. In the event of an emergency being declared by the Mayor, the call may be filed with the Clerk not less than three hours before the call. The Clerk, upon receipt of the call for a special meeting, shall forthwith cause notice to be served upon each Council member by delivery of written copy being served to him personally or delivered to his home address. The Police Department shall cooperate with effectuating such service of notice. Upon written waiver of notice by all members-elect, a special meeting may be held without prior notice.
D. 
Public sessions. All regular and special meetings of the Borough Council shall be open to the public. The Manager, Attorney and Clerk shall attend all regular meetings of the Borough Council. Such other municipal officers and employees of the Borough as may be required by special order of the Council or Manager shall attend regular and special meetings.
[1]
Editor's Note: Former § 3-10, Council conference, was repealed 9-8-1981 by Ord. No. 13-81.
A majority of the members elected shall constitute a quorum at any regular or any duly called special meeting. A lesser number may adjourn any meeting. If no member of the Council is present within 30 minutes of the appointed time for any meeting, any attending member of the administrative staff may adjourn the meeting.
A. 
The business of the Council at its meetings shall be taken up for the consideration of Council and disposed of in the following order:
(1) 
A quorum roll call.
(2) 
Approval of previous minutes.
(3) 
Communications.
(4) 
Public hearings.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Subsection A(5), Opening and reading of bids, was repealed 9-19-2006 by Ord. No. 16-2006. This ordinance also renumbered former Subsection A(6) through (10) as Subsection A(5) through (9), respectively.
(5) 
Reports of staff, boards, committees.
(6) 
Approval of claims.
(7) 
Old business.
(8) 
New business.
(9) 
Council remarks and discussions.
(10) 
Meeting recap.
[Added 9-19-2006 by Ord. No. 16-2006]
(11) 
Adjournment.
B. 
The agenda for each regular meeting shall be prepared under the direction of the Manager. Except for emergency matters, which may be added at any time with the approval of the Mayor and Council members, the agenda shall include only such matters of Council business as have been presented or delivered to the Clerk by the Manager or by a Council member not later than the close of business Thursday preceding the meeting.
[Amended 9-19-2006 by Ord. No. 16-2006]
A. 
Except as otherwise provided herein, Robert's Rules of Order shall be used to answer any question of procedure.
B. 
Minutes of previous meeting need not be read and may be approved by the Council if the Clerk has previously provided copies for Council, but upon request of two or more Council members, they shall be read prior to approval.
C. 
The presiding officer may move, second and debate from the chair. He shall not be deprived of any of the rights or privileges of a Councilman by reason of acting as Chairman. He may vote on all issues, and he shall vote on all roll call votes.
D. 
The Council member moving the adoption of an ordinance or resolution shall have the privilege of closing the debate.
E. 
A motion to reconsider may be made only at the meeting at which such action was taken. Such motion may be made by one of the prevailing side. Nothing herein shall prevent any Council member, at a subsequent meeting, from making or remaking any motion previously made or considered.
F. 
A Council member may request, through the presiding officer, the privilege of having an abstract of his remarks on any subject, not exceeding 100 words, entered into the minutes. If the Council consents thereto, he may prepare in writing such abstract, and the Clerk shall then enter same in the minutes.
G. 
The presiding officer, with the consent of Council, may direct the Clerk to enter in the minutes a synopsis of the discussion on any question before the Council.
A. 
Any person desiring to address the Council shall first await the audience portion of the agenda, then seek to be recognized by the Chairman and, upon recognition, give his name and address and confine his statements to the order of business prescribed by this article, § 3-12.
B. 
Persons may address Council as provided by agenda under § 3-12A(3) and (4). Preference shall be given to those person who have notified the Clerk in advance of their desire to appear and to present testimony and evidence.
A. 
Ordinances may be introduced and read on first reading by reading title only if all Councilmen have been provided with a copy prior to their consideration.
B. 
After proper publication and notice, as prescribed by law (N.J.S.A. 40:49-2), the ordinance may be given a second reading and passed by the Council. Reading at the second hearing may also be by title if a copy shall have been posted upon the bulletin board in the Municipal Building, and copies shall be available for the general public upon request.
C. 
Amendments after publication shall be limited and of a minor nature. Any amendment that makes any substantial change in the substance of the ordinance must follow the same procedures as the ordinance first proposed regarding publication and hearing.
D. 
Ordinances shall be drafted by the Municipal Attorney or Borough Manager only upon request of a majority of the Council present at the regular or special meeting of the Borough Council or at the request of the Municipal Manager.
[Amended 8-8-1978 by Ord. No. 15-78; 9-8-1981 by Ord. No. 13-81; 9-19-2006 by Ord. No. 16-2006]
E. 
Ordinances may be adopted by the Council only by an affirmative vote by the majority of the Council by roll call vote. Each ordinance adopted by Council shall be signed by the Mayor and Clerk and entered into the Ordinance Book as kept on file in the office of the Clerk. No ordinance, except a local budget ordinance, shall take effect less than 20 days after final passage unless the Council, by an affirmative vote of five Council members, shall adopt a resolution declaring the ordinance to be an emergency, upon which said ordinance will take effect with final passage.
[Amended 9-19-2006 by Ord. No. 16-2006]
F. 
Resolutions, unless laid over by a majority vote of the Council, shall be acted upon at the same meeting as their introduction.
G. 
The vote of Council on every ordinance and resolution shall be in a manner prescribed by law. In matters requiring a roll call vote, the Clerk shall enter into the minutes the vote of each member present. No member present should refuse to vote unless he has, prior to discussion on the question, announced his intention of not voting, and he shall not enter into the discussion or debate.
[Amended 9-19-2006 by Ord. No. 16-2006]
H. 
Resolutions may be adopted by the Council by an affirmative vote of the majority present.
A. 
The Borough Attorney shall serve as the parliamentarian of the Borough Council and, upon request of the Chairman, shall settle any question of procedures, using Robert's Rules of Order for his decision. His decision shall be final and not debatable at the meeting in question.
B. 
Any member of the Police Department may act as sergeant at arms at the Council meeting and shall, at the request of the Chairman, be in attendance for any specific meeting. The sergeant at arms shall carry out any order given by the Chairman of the meeting for the purpose of maintaining order and decorum.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Subsection C, which provided for the barring of boisterous persons from Council meetings, and which immediately followed this subsection, was repealed 9-8-1981 by Ord. No. 13-81.
Upon instructions of the Chairman, the sergeant shall place under arrest such persons who violate these rules, also cause them to be removed from said meeting and cause them to be prosecuted pursuant to the law. The complaint on said charges shall be signed by the Chairman of the meeting.