[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Harrison 11-4-1974 by Ord. No. 7-1974. Amendments noted where applicable.]
The Township of Harrison Environmental Commission is hereby established pursuant to Chapter 245 of the Laws of 1968 (N.J.S.A. 40:56A-1 to 40:56A-5), as amended by Chapter 35, P.L. 1972.
[Amended 4-3-2000 by Ord. No. 3-2000]
Appointments; term. The Commission shall consist of seven members appointed by the Mayor, all of whom shall be residents of the Township. The members shall serve without compensation except as hereinafter provided. The Mayor shall designate one of the members to serve as Chairman and presiding officer of the Commission. The term of office of the Commissioners shall be for terms of three years which shall be staggered such that the terms of approximately 1/3 of the members will expire each year. The term of office of the Commissioners shall be until the appointment and qualification of their successors.
[Amended 2-6-2012 by Ord. No. 1-2012]
Removal of members. The Mayor or Township Committee may remove any member of the Commission for cause, on written charges served upon the member and after a hearing thereon of which the member shall be entitled to be heard in person or by counsel. A vacancy on the Commission occurring otherwise than by expiration of a term shall be filled for the unexpired term in the same manner as an original appointment.
Alternate members. The Commission shall also consist of two alternate members appointed by the Mayor, all of whom shall be residents of the Township. The alternate members shall serve without compensation except as hereinafter provided. Alternate members shall be designated at the time of appointment by the authority appointing them as "Alternate No. 1" and "Alternate No. 2."
The terms of the alternate members shall be for two years, except that the terms of the alternate members first appointed shall be two years for Alternate No. 1 and one year for Alternate No. 2 so that the term of not more than one alternate member shall expire in any one year. A vacancy occurring otherwise than by expiration of term shall be filled by the Mayor for the unexpired term only.
An alternate member shall not be permitted to act on any matter in which he has either directly or indirectly any personal or financial interest. An alternate member may, after public hearing if he requests one, be removed by the Mayor for cause.
An alternate member may participate in discussions of the proceedings but may not vote except in the absence or disqualification of a regular member. A vote shall not be delayed in order that a regular member may vote instead of an alternate member. In the event that a choice must be made as to which alternate member is to vote, Alternate No. 1 shall vote first.
The Commission is established for the protection, development or use of natural resources, including water resources, located within the territorial limits of the Township of Harrison. The Commission shall have power to conduct research into the use and possible use of the open land areas of the Township and may coordinate the activities of unofficial bodies organized for similar purposes, and may advertise, prepare, print and distribute books, maps, charts, plans and pamphlets which in its judgment it deems necessary for its purposes. It shall keep an index of all open areas, publicly or privately owned, including open marshlands, swamps and other wetlands, in order to obtain information on the proper use of such areas; and may from time to time recommend to the Planning Board plans and programs for inclusion in the Master Plan and the development and use of such areas.
The Environmental Commission may, subject to the approval of the Township Committee, acquire property, both real and personal, in the name of the Township by gift, purchase, grant, bequest, devise or lease for any of its purposes and shall administer the same for such purposes subject to the terms of the conveyance or gift. Such an acquisition may be to acquire the fee or any lesser interest, development, right, easement (including conservation easement), covenant or other contractual right (including a conveyance on conditions or with limitations or reversions), as may be necessary to acquire, maintain, improve, protect, limit the future use or otherwise conserve and properly utilize open spaces and other land and water areas in the Township.
The Environmental Commission shall keep records of its meetings and activities and make an annual report to the Township Committee.
The Commission may appoint such clerks and other employees as it may from time to time require, providing the same shall be within the limits of funds appropriated to it by the Township Committee.