Pequannock Council Opts to Maintain Commission Membership at 3

English: A view of the restored and repainted ...Image via WikipediaAt the January 3, 2012 reorganizational meeting of the Pequannock Township Council, Mayor Rich Phelan was reappointed for a 2nd year.  Deputy Mayor Melissa Florance Lynch was also reappointed.  Neither Councilman Engelbart nor Vanderhoff sought either position, though both are entering the final year of their terms.

Appointments to township commissions were largely uncontested with a couple exceptions.  Ruth Spellman was reappointed to the Library Board, despite interest from Rocco Salluce.  Salluce was noted as fully "capable of doing the job" by 2 council members, but it was preferred that continuity be continued as Spellman served the preceding term.  Salluce remains active on other commissions.

Christopher Lotito was nominated for appointment to the Open Space Commission, in addition to the Historic Distric, Flood, and Environmental Commissions which he has previously held seats on.  A majority of the council opted not to create a precedent which would encourage the holding of more than 3 seats by a single citizen in the future.  Some council members made comments complimentary of Lotito's work for the township in the past.  Lotito, who was present, stated for the benefit of the citizens and the media that none of the commissions for which he requested appointment had any legislative power whatsoever, but were merely advisory.  Lotito also noted that work on the Open Space Commission would complement work he has already completed with the other 3 commissions.  It was decided that Lotito would cede his interest in the Environmental Commission in favor of appointment to the Open Space Commission.  Councilman Winterfield requested that Lotito continue to attending Environmental meetings until a replacement was found, Lotito noted he had intended to do so.

The majority of other appointments were reappointments of former commission members, with a couple contested seats on the zoning and development boards which required further discussion.  2012's reorganizational session stood in contrast to 2011's, wherein several commissions were increased in size to accommodate the record number of applications that were received.

It was noted at the meeting that having to choose between several applicants is a "good problem" and reflects a great interest and passion of the citizens in their community.

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