Harding Advisories/Notices

12/17/2020 - Board of Adjustment - December 17, 2020 @ 7:30pm

HARDING BOA MEETING NOTICE, DECEMBER 17, 2020

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE, that in accordance with the Open Public Meetings Act, N.J.S.A. 10:4-6 et seq., and in consideration of Executive Order No. 103, issued by Governor Murphy on March 9, 2020, declaring a State of Emergency and a Public Health Emergency in the State of New Jersey, and P.L. 2020, c.11, approved on March 20, 2020, which allows public bodies to conduct meetings and provide notice by electronic means during periods of such emergency, the Harding Township Board of Adjustment hereby notifies the public that to protect the health, safety and welfare of our citizens while ensuring the continued functioning of government, a meeting of the Board of Adjustment scheduled for December 17, 2020 at the Municipal Building, 21 Blue Mill Road, New Vernon, New Jersey will be held electronically only, beginning at 7:30 p.m.

The agenda for the meeting on December 17, 2020 may include public hearings for which public participation will be permitted consistent with the Municipal; Land Use Law pursuant to the procedures set forth in this notice and posted on the Township website at https://www.hardingnj.org.  Members of the public who wish to monitor and/or participate in these public meeting proceedings may register to join from a PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone or Android device at: 

https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJEkf-yvrjMrG9cXwbeT0LslYWt4xcWSILrh

or contact the Board of Adjustment Secretary, Lori Taglairino on how to join by phone at 973.267.8000 ext. 1951 prior to December 17, 2020.

The application materials that are the subject of pending development applications will be posted on the Harding Township website at http://www.hardingnj.org at least 10 days prior to the hearing, subject to supplementation no later than 5 days prior to the hearing date, and the application materials may be viewed and downloaded/copied from the Board of Adjustment agenda at the website location.  Anyone encountering difficulty in accessing these materials should contact Board of Adjustment Secretary Lori Taglairino by phone at 973.267.8000 ext. 1951 or by email at ltaglairino@hardingnj.org.

 

Members of the public utilizing the remote access procedures specified above will be able to view/listen to all proceedings conducted during the meeting and any interested party or legal counsel will be given the opportunity to participate in the public hearing by asking questions of any witnesses and presenting comments, testimony and/or objections, subject to reasonable time limits.  An announcement will be at each time that this opportunity may be exercised, and any person wishing to be heard may respond by clicking the "Raise Hand" button.

 

RESOLUTION BOA# 07-2020 OF THE TOWNSHIP OF HARDING ZONING BOARD

OF ADJUSTMENT ADOPTING EMERGENCY PROTOCOLS, PROCEDURES AND REQUIREMENTS FOR PUBLIC PARTICIPATION AT REMOTE MEETINGS

 

            WHEREAS, the purpose of N.J.A.C. 5:39-1 et seq., Emergency Remote Meeting Protocol for Local Public Bodies, is to ensure that local public bodies can continue to conduct official business in an open and transparent manner whenever a declared emergency exists that prohibits physical attendance by members of the public; and

 

            WHEREAS, a “declared emergency” means a public health emergency pursuant to the Health Powers Act, N.J.S.A. 26:13-1 et seq., or a state of emergency, pursuant to P.L. 1942, c. 251 or both, or a state of local disaster emergency which has been declared by the Governor and is in effect; and

 

            WHEREAS, N.J.A.C. 5:39-1.3 permits a local public body to hold a remote public meeting to conduct public business during a declared emergency if the emergency reasonably prevents a local public body from safely conducting public business at a physical location with members of the public present; and

 

            WHEREAS, if during a declared emergency the Zoning Board of Adjustment of the Township of Harding (the “Zoning Board”) holds a physical meeting in a location where, pursuant to State/Federal guidelines meant to mitigate risk, capacity restrictions are required to reduce the number of individuals that can be present in a meeting, the Zoning Board shall either:        

  1. Hold the public meeting at another location with adequate capacity for the reasonable expected attendance by the public; or

  2. Hold the public meeting as both an in-person and remote public meeting; and

 

            WHEREAS, a public meeting held solely in-person without a remote access alternative provided shall not prohibit members of the public from attending in person; and

 

            WHEREAS, adequate notice of the remote public meeting shall also include, in addition to the Open Public Meeting Act requirements of N.J.S.A. 10:4-8, clear and concise instructions for accessing the remote public meeting, the means for making public comment and how to access any public documents on the Township’s website in the manner set forth at N.J.A.C. 5:39-1.5; and

 

            WHEREAS, at the commencement of a remote public meeting the Chair or the Chair’s designee, or in his or her absence, the Secretary, shall announce publicly and shall cause to be entered into the minutes an accurate statement regarding adequate and electronic notice or an explanation of the reason or reasons such notice was not adequately provided as set forth in N.J.A.C. 5:39-1.5(g); and

 

            WHEREAS, prior to the commencement of a remote public meeting, the Zoning Board shall make a copy of the agenda available to the public for download on the Township’s website and shall post a copy of same at the building where the meeting would otherwise be held, including posting of same at any designated and clearly delineated handicap accessible entrance to the building, by no later than 3:00 PM on the date of the meeting; and

 

            WHEREAS, the content of the electronic notice shall be posted on the main access door of the building where the public would routinely attend public meetings of the local public body in person and the notice must be viewable from the outside; and     

            WHEREAS, the electronic communications used for a remote public meeting shall have a function that allows the Zoning Board to mute the audio of all members of the public, as well as allow members of the public to mute themselves, and same shall be announced at the beginning of every remote public meeting; and           

            WHEREAS, pursuant to N.J.A.C. 5:39-1, if the Zoning Board holds a remote meeting to conduct public business, it shall use electronic communication technology routinely used in business settings that can be accessed by the public at no cost and with participant capacity consistent with the reasonable expectations of the Zoning Board for the type of public meeting being held, and such participant capacity shall, at minimum, not be limited to fewer than 50 public participants (not including persons required to be present to conduct business at the meeting such as the Board members, Board professionals, and all members of the Applicant’s team); and

 

            WHEREAS, remote public meetings may be held by the Zoning Board in a format as selected by the Zoning Board, by means including, but not limited to, electronic communications platforms with video and audio or live streaming via the internet and shall, additionally, provide a telephonic conference line to allow members of the public to dial in by telephone to listen and to provide public comment; and

 

            WHEREAS, when the Zoning Board holds a remote public meeting, it shall allow members of the public to ask questions by audio or by audio and video if the meeting is being held over both; and

 

            WHEREAS, any remote public meeting where sworn testimony is being taken shall be broadcast by video, as well as audio, and all individuals giving sworn testimony, including members of the public making comments, shall appear by video; and

           

            WHEREAS, any presentation or documents that would otherwise be viewed by, or made available to, members of the public physically attending an in-person public meeting shall be made available on the internet website of the Township or made visible during the video broadcast of the remote public meeting; and

 

            WHEREAS, except for quasi-judicial hearings on land development applications or similar public hearings, in addition to making public comments at any remote public meeting, the Zoning Board, in advance of the remote meeting shall allow public comments to be submitted to the Clerk by electronic mail and in written letter form by a reasonable deadline to be established and posted on the website in advance of the remote public meeting; and

 

            WHEREAS, except for quasi-judicial hearings on land development applications or similar public hearings, public comments submitted prior to the remote public meeting through electronic or regular mail shall be read aloud and addressed during the remote public meeting in a manner audible to all meeting participants and the public; and

 

            WHEREAS, a reasonable time limit shall be placed on the reading of individual written comments, all of which shall be read from the beginning until the established time limit is reached; and

            WHEREAS, in support of, and respect for, an open, fair and informed decision-making process, the Zoning Board recognizes that civil, respectful and courteous discourse and behavior are conducive to the democratic and harmonious airing of concerns and decision making; and

 

            WHEREAS, in an effort to preserve the intent of open government and maintain a positive environment for citizen input and Zoning Board decision making, policies and rules shall be established to promote civility and maintain decorum at in-person public meetings and remote public meetings in accordance with N.J.A.C. 5:39-1.4 (f)-(h); and

 

            WHEREAS, if a member of the public becomes disruptive during a remote public meeting, including during any period for public comment, the Chair or the Chair’s designee, or in their absence the Secretary, shall mute or continue muting, or direct appropriate staff to mute or continue muting, the disruptive member of the public and warn that continued disruption may result in the member of the public being prevented from speaking during the remote public meeting or removed from the remote public meeting; and

 

            WHEREAS, disruptive conduct at an in-person public meeting or remote public meeting includes sustained inappropriate behaviors including, but not necessarily limited to, shouting, interruption, and use of profanity; and

 

            WHEREAS, any member of the public who continues to act in a disruptive manner at a remote public meeting after receiving an initial warning, may be muted while other members of the public are allowed to proceed with their questions or comments; and

 

            WHEREAS, if time permits, the disruptive individual shall be allowed to speak after all other members of the public have been given the opportunity to make comment and, if the person still remains disruptive, the individual may be muted or kept on mute for the remainder of the remote public meeting, or removed from the remote public meeting; and

 

            NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Zoning Board of Adjustment of the Township of Harding that the standards and procedures for emergency remote meetings, as set forth in the recitals to this resolution and as codified in N.J.A.C. 5:39-1 et seq., are hereby confirmed, established and adopted in order to safeguard public participation in any in-person or remote public meetings in the Township of Harding and shall apply to all members of the public in attendance at any in-person public or remote public meeting in the Township of Harding; and

 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Board Secretary is hereby authorized and directed to post copies of this resolution on the Harding Township web site and on the door of the Municipal Building so as to be visible to the public from the outside.

 

 

For the Resolution: Chipperson, Maselli, Symonds, Newlin, Rosenbaum, Addonizio &

            Flanagan.

 

Against the Resolution: None.

 

Certified to be a True Copy

 

By:                                                                 

       Lori Taglairino, Secretary