MTC Special Meeting Minutes 05-17-10 Print E-mail

Montville Township Committee Special Meeting – Board of Education Budget Review

Monday, May 17, 2010, 7:00 p.m.

Montville Township Municipal Building, 195 Changebridge Road, Montville, New Jersey


7:00 p.m. – Statement of Open Public Meetings Act Compliance read by Chairman James Sandham, Jr.:  “As required by the Open Public Meetings Act, adequate Notice of this meeting has been provided which Notice specified the time and place of the meeting to the extent known at that time. The Notice was posted on the bulletin board at the Municipal Building, mailed to The Daily Record, The Star Ledger, and The Citizen as well as other newspapers and it was placed on file in the Township Clerk’s office. This meeting has been properly noticed to the public in accordance with the Open Public Meetings Act.”


Roll call Township Committee:


Present:          Committeeman Don Kostka

                        Committeewoman Deborah Nielson

                        Committeeman Tim Braden

                        Chairman James Sandham, Jr.


Absent:            Art Daughtry, Committeeman


Also present:   Martin Murphy, Township Attorney

Gertrude Atkinson, Township Clerk


Pledge of Allegiance.


Board of Education members present:  Jon Alin, John Morella, Carmela Novi, Jackie Ritschel, Matthew Kayne, Karen Cortellino, President.




Nicholas Leone, 36 Passaic Valley Road, Montville, Vice-President of Student Council of the high school senior class, stated he participates in a lot of extra-curricular activities.  Beyond academics, this is what makes us better and more representative.  There is more than just school work.  I appreciate the decision – it is a hard thing to make.  If there is anything that you can save with all of these cuts – you are tampering with their lives/jobs.  This past Thursday when the cuts were released, I spoke with a janitor there.  He showed me his letter of layoff.  If there are any ways to avoid cuts – please don’t do that.  I am graduating this year, but I still care for the future generations of this town and education.  I moved here because this town had a better education for me.  I trust you guys to make these decisions and make the best decisions for us.  I read your letter on OurMontville, and I truly appreciate your position. 


Karen Cortellino, Board of Education President, thanked the Township Committee for allowing Nicholas to speak tonight.


While we can agree to disagree, every dollar spent affects education and every dollar cut can or will directly or indirectly cut education.  Concerns:  cut in custodians – this number is a projection.  $60,000 subscription busing – save by charging $100 more to the elementary students.  No guarantee this will be realized.  $25,000 co-curricular club advisors.  We have already cut that line item by nearly 25%.  Tuition teacher discount – right now a discounted tuition is still revenue.  The cut translates to a double-cut.  Helping the taxpayers – reducing your cuts to $700,000 or $800,000 will not have meaningful benefits to taxpayers but it will to the children of Montville.  I am here tonight to represent 4,300 voices, not the teachers or the parents.  The board can accept the outsourcing of custodians and the reduction in fund balance.  That is $780,000 in cuts.  I would ask you, don’t ask us to cut more.


Matthew Kayne, Board of Education Vice-President, stated this district is a district that people move to for our schools.  Those same taxpayers expect to pay higher taxes.  I share the same concerns as Dr. Cortellino.  Parsippany underwent this same process last week.  They have a much larger budget.  In the end the Town Council recommended $800,000 in cuts.  That comes to .7%.  Your suggestion for cuts to our budget is 1.5%.  As you finalize your numbers, it is not too late to consider altering your recommendation downward for a more workable number for our district.  These cuts if left as they are are harsh and where the expectations for a school district such as ours, they hurt.  The classrooms and the schools have been hurt enough.


Maxim Sapozmnikov, 66 Davenport Road, Montville, stated the original school budget was rejected by the voters.  The majority has spoken.  We should respect the voice of the majority. 

Hearing no further comments, Chairman Sandham closed the public portion.  Motion:  Nielson.  Second:  Braden.  All in favor except Daughtry - absent.  Motion approved.


Sandham stated on the $456,000 of custodial savings, that was the BOE’s number.  Busing – the number was actually $70,000 that was proposed.  We scaled that back a little bit.  Extra-curricular and coaching – we looked at that where there were multiple advisors/coaches.  We looked at where areas could be found to be shared.  The Township Committee did not want to get this budget.  The voters spoke, and this Township Committee feels compelled to honor that democratic process.  On a personal basis I get 10 to 30 e-mails a day.  During this process, I got between 30 and 60 a day.  Since last Wednesday’s meeting, the volume has not been as high; nonetheless, I got a ton of e-mails.  Two people told me we should have cut significantly more.  No one came to me and said we should cut less other than the BOE.  99.9% of the e-mails said we came up to a good decision.




            WHEREAS, the 2010 School Budget was presented to the voters of the Township of Montville on Tuesday, April 20, 2010, and said budget was rejected; and


            WHEREAS, the Board of Education in accordance with N.J.S.A. 18A:22-37 did deliver to the municipality within two days the necessary budget information; and


            WHEREAS, representatives of the Township Committee and the Board of Education did hold joint consultation meetings in an effort to collect information and determine the amount to be levied for real property taxation in support of the Montville Schools in compliance with N.J.S.A. 18A:22-37; and


            WHEREAS, the Township Committee has conducted an independent review of the Board of Education's proposed budget in order to determine the amount of real property taxation required to provide a "thorough and efficient system of education in the schools" within the constricted timeframe as provided by N.J.S.A. 18A:22-37.


            NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Township Committee of the Township of Montville, County of Morris, State of New Jersey, that the budget submitted to the voters by the Montville Board of Education on April 20, 2010 was rejected in terms of General Fund, thereby necessitating a levy to be set by the Township Committee which levy is hereby set at $59,929,098.00.  The recommended reductions in the proposed budget are certified in Schedule A attached hereto.


            BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Township Clerk is directed to send a certified copy of this Resolution to the County Board of Taxation as a certification of the amount of property taxes to be raised in calendar year 2010 to support the Montville Board of Education.



Township of Montville

Defeated School Budget - 2010

Potential Reductions





Line Item

Line Item - Name











Other Revenues from Local



Reduces bussing costs by equalizing the subsystem charge between elementary and high school students


Undesignated Surplus








Budgeted Fund Balance –

Operating Budget


Utilize some of the surplus by reducing the surplus to 1 ½% instead of 2%


Tuition for Teachers’











Remove out of district teacher benefit for tuition for their children enrolled in the school system


Outsource Custodial Staff – Salary








Undistributed Expense-

Custodial Services-Salaries


Outsource the evening custodial function for which the district has previously obtained quotations


Outsource Custodial Staff – Benefits








Unallocated Benefits-Employee

Benefits-Health Benefits


Outsource the evening custodial function for which the district has previously obtained quotations


Admin. Contract – Health Ins.








Unallocated Benefits-Employee

Benefits-Health Benefits

Apply 1 ½% of salary as contribution to health insurance when the contract for administrators expires


Reduce Courier to PT








Undistributed Expenses-Central



Reduce courier from full-time to part-time


Reduce Coaching Staff








School Sponsored Athletics-



Reduce the number of coaches in the sports program


Reduce Club Advisor Staffing








School Sponsored Co Curricular



Reduce the number of advisors to the clubs


Drainage Wall – Hilldale School








Facility Acquisition and

Construction Services-

Construction Services


Reduce the amount reserved for this capital item as it can be constructed for less money


TOTAL                                    $984,000.00


Motion:  Nielson.  Second:  Kostka.  Roll call vote – Daughtry, absent; Kostka, yes; Nielson, yes; Braden, yes; Sandham, yes.  Resolution adopted.


Meeting adjourned at 7:20 p.m.  Motion:  Kostka.  Second:  Nielson.  All in favor except Daughtry - absent.  Motion approved.


Respectfully submitted,





Gertrude H. Atkinson, Township Clerk


Last Updated ( Wednesday, 23 March 2011 )
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