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Wednesday Night: Ask the Mayor July 6, 2022

Jul 06, 2022

On Wednesday, July 6, 2022, it is Ask The Mayor Night starting at 6:30 pm on Zoom. Anyone who has a question for the Mayor & Council can log into Zoom on their smartphone or computer and participate during the Public Hearing on Ordinances and/or the Public Session with comments and/or General Questions and/or Questions on Specific Ordinances or items on the Agenda.

The Agenda

Wednesday’s Agenda is available online. There are two opportunities to speak at Wednesday’s Mayor & Council meeting.  The first opportunity for public members to ask questions and or make a statement is on the Ordinance for increases to Municipal Department Head annual salaries.  The second is the Public Session where any member of the public can ask questions on any topic and/or make a Public statement.

The Meeting will start at 6:30 p.m.  Plan to be on time because Town of Harrison Mayor & Council meetings is usually quick.  There is usually very little discussion on items on the Agenda.  Listen for the announcement of the Public Session. More information on the Public Session is below.

The Mayor & Council Meeting is held over Zoom by using the following link, on your computer or smartphone. Link to Town of Harrison meeting

If you are using your Smartphone it is recommended that you download the Zoom app to Android or Apple to improve the quality of the session.

You can also dial in using any telephone by dialing 1 646 876 9923 and putting in when prompted the Webinar ID 845-1965-9227 and Passcode: 479413

You can also go to Zoom’s website https://zoom.us/join and put in the above Webinar Id and Passcode to gain access to the meeting.

Public Session

During the public comment portion of the Mayor & Council meeting, anyone wishing to ask a question or comment may do so by using your computer or Zoom app the “raise hand” feature.  Those using Zoom’s telephone feature have to enter *9 on their phone.  Those unfamiliar with Zoom, please note that the “raise hand” button is usually out of view at the bottom of your computer screen and you must scroll down the area at the bottom of the screen for it to be revealed and clicked on.  All microphones of anyone participating as a public member are muted.  So if you can’t find the “raise hand” button or dial *9 on your phone, you cannot get anyone’s attention that you are having an issue with the Zoom program.

If you are on your computer, you may be able to raise your hand before the announcement so you are not left out.  It is recommended to check to make sure your hand is raised once the Public Session announcement has been made.

Only one person can speak from the public at a time and you must listen for your name so that you can address the Mayor after being unmuted.  The Mayor & Council have a five-minute maximum time to speak per individual at the Public Session. You can get a lot of information if you ask questions in five minutes although other towns have 10-minute maximums.  The Town Clerk who runs the meeting can mute you after the 5 minutes but rarely is that done. Mayor Fife can extend your time so do not let the 5 minute time limitation be an excuse for you not to participate in the Public Session.  Also, note that there is no Video of citizens who are speaking at the meeting only audio.  So you can ask your questions from anywhere that does not have a lot of background noise.  No worries about your hair being a mess.

Lastly, if you know that you can’t make the meeting or will make an excuse not to attend the meeting despite having a question, you can email your question and/or comment to the Harrison Town Attorney & Town Clerk Paul Zarbetski at [email protected] or dust off your typewriter to type a letter and send it to Paul J. Zarbetski, Town Clerk, 318 Harrison Avenue, Harrison NJ 07029.  You need to submit the question or comment at least 2 hours before the scheduled meeting time.

The Agenda for Wednesday’s meeting is available here Agenda for Wednesday, July 6, 2022.  The highlights: Resolution Honoring William J. Sweeney, a Harrison resident, for his Distinguished Service Award 2021-22 by the New Jersey State American Legion; followed by Municipal Department Head Ordinance Public Session; Special Improvement District (SID) Contract for properties South of Essex Street (not very clear what the designated area is since there is no map in the Agenda.  What area will be covered by this Special Improvement District); A Contract to Suburban Consulting Engineers for Environmental Services at the Cape May Street Park (Is there an Environmental problem at the new Cape May Street Park?)  

If you want any details or documents related to anything on the Agenda you can email Paul Zarbetski ([email protected]) in his role as Town Clerk to obtain those more detailed documents.

Remember, The quality of democracy depends upon the degree of public participation. Democracy survives if you participate in it starting in your local community.

Are you going to Ask the Mayor Town of Harrison Mayor & Council meeting?  What is your question or questions you are going to ask?  Let Us Know Your Thoughts on our Community Discussion Board.  If you have not signed up yet to participate you can Sign Up now.