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Galloway Township Council Tables Several Resolutions

Four separate resolutions on Tuesday night's agenda were tabled until the Feb. 12 meeting.

Galloway Township Council tabled several resolutions, including the approval of a new invocation policy and the appointment of new volunteer fire department chiefs, at its meeting Tuesday night, Jan. 22.

At the Jan. 2 reorganization meeting, Tim McKenna was sworn in as the new fire chief. The township gave the individual departments a month to make their final appointments. On Tuesday night, Township Manager Arch Liston stated the departments would need one more week, and that appointments would be made at the Feb. 12 meeting.

At that time, council may also be closer to approving  the township's new invocation policy. At the Jan. 2 meeting, a committee chaired by Deputy Mayor Tony Coppola introduced a new policy in which 35 pre-approved prayers would be read by council members on a rotating basis prior to the beginning of each council meeting. However, on Tuesday night, the resolution was tabled so that the language of the resolution could be further analyzed. According to Coppola, the township intends to make it clear that the policy is not a mandate, and that those not wishing to participate don’t feel compelled to. Previously, he stated new prayers can be added to the rotation, as long as they are approved by the township solicitor.

At the Jan. 2 meeting, council approved a resolution that would pay over to departing unionized township employees, but tabled a resolution that would pay out at least $60,000 to managerial employees after new Councilman Jim McElwee raised concerns over the amount. On Tuesday night, the council went into closed session to discuss payouts to former Township Manager Steve Bonanni and former Chief Financial Officer Jill Gougher. When council reconvened, Mayor Don Purdy stated Liston would take another look at the numbers, and a decision would be made at the next meeting.

Ron Schreiber January 23, 2013 at 08:45 PM
Crook's always get their money no worry
smithvillian January 24, 2013 at 01:56 AM
Why the closed session..?..Why does the public not get to hear the open dialogue and decisions being made with regard to these payouts? Why do we not get to hear the concerns and reservations of council with regard to these payouts? Is McElwee the ONLY one with concerns..?.. OR...is he the only one with the guts to raise a concern. I would bet the farm that it is the opinion of the lion's share of Galloway taxpayers that Stephen Bonanni has already received his payout. That being in the countless unaccountable hours where he pulled disappearing acts documented and demonstrated by the records pulled while on the clock...his other unauthorized cash out he basically gave himself prior to abruptly "retiring" before the s___ hit the fan and the mucho bux forked out by Galloway for his lawyer fees and pay off in the Tilton case....I'd say the guy is paid....what do ya think my fellow Galloway comrades?
TheZog January 24, 2013 at 02:28 AM
The retirees should get the dollar value of unused leave for each year - not the accumulated unused hours times the current rate of pay. Assume that the employee had a total of 18 hrs of unpaid leave because he used all of his leave for every year except for 3 yrs. Let's assume that the unused time was 10 hrs 20 yrs ago, 5 hrs 7 yrs ago and 3 hrs on his final year. Let's also assume that his hrly rate was $9/hr 20 yrs ago; $25/hr 7 yrs ago; and $35/hr in his final year. His year-by-year accumulated payout should have been ($9 x 10 hrs) + ($25 x 5 hrs) + ($35 x 3 hrs) equaling $320. The current method is: $35 x 18 hrs, equaling $630. A significant difference! Since salaries are budgeted each year, paying retirees with unbudgeted money is illegal because the retirees are being granted illegal, unapproved & unbudgeted de-facto retroactive salary increases by crediting time accrued at a lesser pay rate but compensating the retiree at a higher pay rate many years later. Proper utilization of the budgeted money would have been to pay the retiree with the year-by-year calculation method above. The lazy & fiscally-incompetent way is to multiply the current pay times the total unused hours that occurred at various times over the past 20 yrs. I believe that the year-by-year method would be highly-defensible in court because municipalities are not permitted to spend more than they are permitted under law and approved by resolution in the acceptance of the budgets.
Keep Galloway Green January 24, 2013 at 02:07 PM
Bonanni shouldn't get a dime. Didn't Gougher give away taxpayer $$$ without approval. Galloway should keep her $$$ too.

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