JACKSON — Public hearings have been scheduled on two ordinances that have been introduced by the members of the Jackson Township Council.
Township Council President Martin Flemming, Vice President Stephen M. Chisholm Jr., Councilman Nino Borrelli, Councilwoman Jennifer Kuhn and Councilman Scott Sargent were in attendance during the Jan. 17 meeting of the governing body.
The following ordinances were introduced in separate unanimous votes by the council members.
The two ordinances will each have a public hearing during the council’s Feb. 14 meeting in the municipal building. At that time, members of the public may comment on or ask questions about the proposed ordinances.
The council members may adopt any of the above ordinances following the public hearing on that specific ordinance.
• Ordinance No. 1-23 will, if adopted, appropriate an amount not to exceed $275,000 to fund the preparation of a master plan. The master plan is a series of documents that outlines the manner in which a municipality will develop. The master plan is required to be updated at regular intervals. Consultants will be hired to prepare the master plan.
In response to a question from resident Elenor Hannum, Flemming said he estimates it will take about a year to complete the master plan and he said the process will be driven by the Planning Board.
Hannum said, “Residents deserve clear communication at all times” during the process of updating and revising the township’s master plan.
• Ordinance No. 2-23 will, if adopted, appropriate an amount not to exceed $2.12 million to fund the preparation and execution of a revaluation of all properties in Jackson.
When a revaluation is authorized by a municipal governing body, a company that specializes in the process is generally hired to examine every parcel in the community and to establish the current market value of each property.
A property’s current assessed market value is used by the tax office to help calculate how much the owner will pay in property taxes on an annual basis.
One ordinance that initially appeared on the Jan. 17 agenda was not introduced by the council. Ordinance No. 4-23 proposed the establishment of the Jackson Open Space Committee.
According to the ordinance, the purpose of the committee would be “to find and locate properties for the township to purchase and preserve for the purposes of land preservation and/or recreational opportunities for the residents of Jackson through the utilization of the township’s open space funds.”
According to the ordinance, the Open Space Committee would have nine members, appointed for a term of one year, as follows: one member of the Township Council appointed by the Township Council; one member of the township administration, appointed by the mayor; the mayor or a mayor’s representative; and six citizens of Jackson appointed by the mayor.
The committee would be an advisory body and none of its recommendations would be binding on the Township Council or the township administration, according to the ordinance.
Borrelli said the proposed Open Space Committee ordinance needs to be “tweaked” and he said more control needs to be placed in the hands of the council regarding the matter.
According to the ordinance as proposed, the Township Council would appoint one member of the committee and Jackson’s mayor would appoint eight members of the committee.
No date was announced regarding future action on the Open Space Committee ordinance.