BOARD OF HEALTH
January 6, 2005
The regular monthly meeting of the Board of Health of the Township of Mahwah, held at the Municipal Offices, 475 Corporate Drive, Mahwah NJ, was called to order at 8:02 PM by President, Wendy DeSilva. The Opening Statement was read according to the Sunshine Law and was followed by Roll Call.
PRESENT: Mrs. DeSilva
ABSENT: Mr. Ackerman
PROFESSIONALS: Mr. Romans, Attorney
Mr. Hopper, Health Officer
Mr. Ostrow, REHS
Mrs. Campbell, Acting Secretary
APPROVAL OF REGULAR MEETING MINUTES
Moved by Mr. Harris and, seconded by Mr. LaMontagne and agreed by all present, the minutes of the regular meeting of December 2, 2004 were approved.
APPROVAL OF HEALTH ACTIVITIES REPORT
Moved by Mrs. Spiech and, seconded by Mr. Wasson that the Health Activities Report be approved.
Mr. Romans wanted to know if we had received enough flu vaccine and if we were going to hold any more clinics. Mr. Hopper replied that our allotment was sufficient to vaccinate everyone who came to the 12/15 clinic – both registered and waitlisted residents. We also ran a second clinic on Tuesday 12/28/04 for the benefit of the registrants who were unable to attend the regular clinic. At this point, we have no more vaccine and are referring callers to Pascack Valley Hospital. Pascack will be running two clinics the week of January 10th. The state has also broadened the parameters of who may receive vaccine.
Mr. LaMontagne wanted to know if vaccination at this late date was
still advisable. Mr. Hopper stated yes; the heart of the flu season begins in early February. He further stated that New Jersey is now reporting “local activity” of influenza – a step up from the last report (“sporadic activity”).
Mrs. Spiech noted a pre-operational inspection of the new Montessori school had taken place and questioned if the facility had opened. Mr. Ostrow replied yes.
Mr. LaMontagne asked Mr. Ostrow to update the Board on the Shorco activities. Mr. Ostrow replied that the clean up system was in operation. He had visited the site with Handex (the private, state-hired contractor who operates the system) several times. Initially, the effluent tested with too much turbidity, so holding chambers were installed in the shed (which also houses the oil/water separator) to settle out the solids. Handex visits the site once a week to make sure the system is operating properly and is working on the installation of a remote alarm system. Currently the system is pumping 8-9 gallons per minute.
Mrs. DeSilva wanted to know how much maintenance was required on the present system. Mr. Ostrow replied that the work-horse of the system is a reliable pump. Because we had pressed for evacuation of the effluent into the sanitary sewer system (vs. pumping it directly into the Ramapo River) the use of higher maintenance equipment (ie. an air stripper) is not required.
Mr. LaMontagne asked if the town was responsible for inspecting the oil/water separator (due to the joint nature of the NJPDES clean-up agreement). Mr. Ostrow stated that while Handex has primary responsibility, we would periodically inspect the operation as well.
Mrs. DeSilva asked how long the clean up would take. Mr. Ostrow responded that due to the extent of the contamination, it would take several years. Part of the process is testing down to the water table, hoping, of course, that the readings diminish over time. Similar clean ups have taken in excess of 10 years.
Both Mr. Harris and Mrs. DeSilva wanted to know if contamination sites without wells in close proximity were ever cleaned up. Mr. Ostrow replied that if a new tenant were to purchase or lease the property, we would press them to clean up the site as a condition of the sale or tenant approval.
Mr. Harris expressed concern over an abatement issued in August for an unlicensed dog that was still pending. Mr. Ostrow explained that the resident in question had suffered a family tragedy. After confirming that the dog’s vaccinations were current, we made an allowance for the family’s circumstance. A summons has since been issued.
There being no further discussion or questions, the Health Activities Report was unanimously approved by all present.
HEALTH OFFICER’S REPORT
Moved by Mr. Wasson and seconded by Mrs. Tracey, that the Health Officer’s Report should be approved.
Mr. Hopper related that the flu vaccine crisis has consumed an extraordinary amount of both his, and the Department’s time and resources, as well as those of the agencies we deal with. He noted that by this time of year, Bergen Community Health Care has submitted their year-end report; we have only just received their 3rd quarter report.
Approximately 550 people were vaccinated at our first clinic and another 30 or so at the second clinic at Norfolk Village. The initial clinic ran very smoothly and despite the great number of participants, the lines moved quickly. Mr. Hopper credited the staffs of the Senior Center, Human Services, Health Department and the Police Department for their efforts and thanked Mrs. Spiech for volunteering her services once again. The building was able to accommodate the entire line, so no one was waiting outdoors. We received many favorable comments on our handling of the clinic and many seniors who were genuinely grateful to get their shot, made it a point to tell us so.
Mrs. DeSilva noted several references in the report regarding the Ramapo Ridge situation and, asked Mr. Hopper to expand on those comments. Mr. Hopper updated the Board thusly: The EPA Tools for Schools program is in place, and training is to begin next week. RK Environmental (consultants to the Board of Education), school faculty, parents and Diane Homler from our Department are scheduled to participate. We expect to get an accurate assessment on the indoor air quality not only of Ramapo Ridge, but the other buildings owned by the Board of Education as well.
Mr. Hopper has been in close contact with Eileen Stevenson (school nurse) and they are monitoring two children who have been out long term with gastro-intestinal complaints. At present, there are no confirmed diagnoses on these children.
There are still concerns being raised by a small group of parents, and Mr. Hopper recently spoke with one in particular, who hopes to be involved in the EPA program.
Mrs. DeSilva asked what the cost of the program would be. Mr. Hopper replied that a grant was obtained from Rutgers; there would be no cost to the Board of Education.
There being no further discussion or questions, the Health Officer’s Report was unanimously approved.
Moved by Mr. Harris and, seconded by Mr. Wasson, the bills for December were unanimously approved.
REPORT OF ATTORNEY
BERGEN COMMUNITY HEALTH CARE, 3rd QUARTER REPORT
Mrs. Spiech inquired about the clinic statistics reported for Stag Hill. Mr. Hopper replied that we are still running a clinic once a month at the Ramapo Mountain Indian Headquarters. It is not heavily attended, but we are making in-roads with the cooperation of the center’s administrator. She acts as an intermediary between the nurses and the residents and can apprise us of particular needs or individual concerns.
1) APPLICATION FOR HORSE LICENSE, HAWK NEST CONSTRUCTION
Site: Stabled Way, off Midvale Mountain Road in the southern section of Mahwah (over the Glen Gray Bridge). Mr. Ostrow noted that the owners enlisted our comments during the planning phase to ensure that the stables would comply with existing regulations. The stables and the home are both new construction situated on approximately 46 acres.
Mr. LaMontagne wanted to know if the property could be subdivided. Mr. Ostrow stated that a fair portion of the land was in the flood plain, and therefore, not build-able. Mr. Harris asked how
many horses would be stabled at the property. Mr. Ostrow replied that the application listed approximately 15 horses. Mrs. Tracey asked if they would be boarding horses. Mr. Ostrow stated that boarding animals was a zoning issue over which we had no jurisdiction.
Moved by Mrs. Tracey and seconded by Mrs. Spiech, and unanimously agreed by all present that the application for a horse license by
Hawk Nest Construction be approved.
2) Resolution No. 05-01
Appointment of Marianne Campbell
as Alternate Deputy Registrar
Introduced by: Mr. LaMontagne
Seconded by: Mrs. Spiech
Roll Call: 6 ayes, 1 absent
3) Resolution No. 05-02
Reappointment of Yvonne T. Driscoll, MD
as Child Health Conference Physician
Introduced by: Mr. Wasson
Seconded by: Mrs. Tracey
Roll Call: 6 ayes, 1 absent
4) Resolution No. 05-03
2005 Bergen Community Health Care Contract
Introduced by: Mr. Harris
Seconded by: Mrs. Spiech
Roll Call: 6 ayes, 1 absent
There being no further comments and no further business, a motion to adjourn at 8:40 was made by Mr LaMontagne, seconded by Mr. Harris and agreed by all present.
The next meeting is scheduled for February 3, 2005.
Marianne Campbell for
G. Hallissey, Secretary
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