Vernon Township

21 Church Street, Vernon, NJ 07462
Phone: 973.764.4055


Minutes: October 19. 2023





These minutes are a synopsis of the meeting that took place on 10/19/2023.  Copies of the recording are available at the office of the Vernon Township Municipal Utilities Authority (the “MUA”). 



  1. Call to Order

This regular meeting of the VTMUA commenced at 7:01 pm.

  1. Statement of Compliance

Pursuant to the Open Public Meetings Act, adequate notice of this regular meeting was provided to the public and the press on December 27, 2022 by delivering to the press such notice and posting same at the municipal building and filed with the office of the MUA as well as posted on the website.

  1. Salute to the Flag
  2. Roll Call of Members and Professionals

The following members were present:

Paul Kearney

Kristin Wheaton

Dave McDermott

Ed DeYoung

Pat Rizzuto

Mark Bower arrived at 7:16 pm

The following member was absent:

Ed Snook

The following professionals were present: Donelle Bright, Administrator/CFO; Igor Bykov, Attorney; Steve Benosky, Engineer; and Jaclyn McCabe, Recording Secretary.

  1. Rate Breakdown Presentation

Ms. Bright gave a rate breakdown presentation. The full presentation can be found on the Vernon township website.

  1. Open Meeting to the Public (for Agenda Items Only)

Mr. McDermott made the motion to open the meeting to the public for agenda items only, which was seconded by Ms. Wheaton and carried by unanimous votes. Ms. McCabe stated no one from the public wished to speak.

Mr. DeYoung motioned to close the meeting for agenda items only, which was seconded by Mr. McDermott and carried by unanimous votes.

  1. Resolution #23-27: Approval of the Bills

Mr. McDermott made the motion to approve resolution #23-27, which was seconded by Mr. DeYoung and carried by the affirmative votes of Mr. Kearney, Ms. Wheaton, Mr. McDermott, Mr. DeYoung, and Mr. Rizzuto.

  1. Approval of Minutes:
    1. Regular Meeting 9/21/23

Ms. Wheaton made the motion to approve the regular meeting minutes from 9/21/23, with the correction made t in section 7, which was seconded by Mr. DeYoung, and carried by the affirmative votes of Ms. Wheaton, Mr. McDermott, Mr. DeYoung and Mr. Rizzuto.

  1. Administrator report

Ms. Bright updated still in construction phase with PS2. Additionally, there is a new project manager and will touch base.

The SSA mapping was approved, and waiting to hear back to see if it can be published.

The transfer station was discussed with SCMUA as well as EDU’s, meeting was productive.

Pump station 1 there was a pump went down and new one was purchased.

Pump station tree rehab will happen in 2024.

For Ryan Homes, in the final stages for getting sewer connections. For Theta drive hopefully early next year to be connected.

Finance updates, 3rd quarter reports will be put on the website.

All the condo bills were updated and there should be no additional changes.

  1. Licensed Operator Report

No report at this time.

  1. Engineer Report

Good progress is still being made on PS2, there has been a little lull because the generator is on backorder. The electrical work will start next week, there was a meeting to review the power connection and no issues there. Mr. Benosky was asked if the station is still on schedule, and was answered they are a few months behind, mainly because of the generator.

  1. Open to the Public for Items Not on the Agenda

Mr. Bower opened the meeting to the public for items not on the agenda, seconded by Ms. Wheaton. Ms. McCabe informed there was a member of the public who wished to speak,

A local business owner spoke to the board regarding hooking his business up to the service area. The owner stated hi purchased the business and did not know that it needed to be up to the sewer, He feels that the previous owner should have been instructed to connect, and was told by the previous owner that they did not have to connect. The business owner stated the reason he is there today is because he is concerned about the hookup fees and does not want to be hit hard with the fees. He stated if he has to hoop up, he will but is looking for an extension

The board said without paperwork we do not know the connection fee. Once reviewed, the connection fee will be based on the total number of EDUs. Ms. Bright added that there was no sewer system at the time of the Main St. connection, so the only option was to do the septic. Ms. Bright added once determined an application for a hardship can be made to the board.

Mr. McDermott motioned to close the meeting to the public for items not on the agenda, which was seconded by Ms. Wheaton and carried by unanimous votes.

  1. Work Session:
    1. Senior/Vet Discount

Ms. Bright stated this has been work on by Mr. McDermott, there are a total of 23 properties that would be affected. Ms. Bright added there may be more as more are approved at the end of the year. Ms. Bright asked if there is a specific dollar amount or if they would like to do exactly what tax does to keep it easier. Mr. Kearney asked for specific dollar amounts and calculations. Ms. Bright said if it’s the same deductions it would be about$5800.00 a year; so not a significant amount.

  1. Commissioners’ Comments

Mr. Bower had no further comments.

Mr. De Young had no further comments.

Mr. Rizzuto stated there are a number of projects currently in progress. Some are in holding and some moving forward, there are all predicated on water or sewer and the problem is that there are too many people that do not understand the requirements. We run into a problem with comments to get rid of the MUA and its easy to say but not something that can be done. Mr. Rizzuto asked Ms. Bright to come up with some sort of FAQ questions to be [provided to answer these questions. Unless EDUs are added to our system there will never get anything moved along. Mr. Rizzuto added we need to get the transfer station moving along with SCMUA, and we need them so we may need to do what we have to do to have a better working relationship.

Ms. Wheaton commented it was a good meeting with SCMUA and an opportunity to study and work together on. Ms. Wheaton asked MS. Bright for meeting minutes to distribute from the meeting.  Ms. Wheaton stated there is a disconnect on the funds awarded for the funds awarded for sewer, as they are awarded to the town and not the MUA. It would be good to have a capital improvement plan to present to the council.

Mr. McDermott had no further comments.

  1. Chairman’s Comments

Mr. Kearney commented there is a lot of false information regarding the MUA, and what people need to understand is that this commission did not make the rules this was done before us. Regarding the bedrooms, we have to use the tax numbers so that it is accurate. The MUA does not decide anything, we were billing on what we were told and now we are billing for the accurate information.  Mr. Kearney added he would like the application from earlier to be submitted to review.

  1. Adjournment

Motion to adjourn the meeting at 8:26 pm was made by Mr. DeYoung and seconded by Mr. McDermott and carried by unanimous votes.

Respectfully submitted,

Jaclyn McCabe, Recording Secretary

Minutes Approved: 12.21.23


Vernon Township

21 Church Street
Vernon, NJ 07462

Phone: 973.764.4055 

Township Hours

Monday - Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.


Emergencies Dial 9-1-1
Non-Emergencies Dial 973-764-6155


Current Agendas

Township Council

Land Use Board