Monthly Archives: February 2013

A Flip-Flop Moment: February 11, 2013

heightsonline launches a new feature, “A Flip-Flop Moment,” in which we revisit great flip-flops you may have missed. Since these moments are captured on video, it is a fairly simple matter to review the recordings and copy clips where flip-flops occur. And the times are provided so that the master recording may be consulted for verification. At the end of the year, heightsonline will count up the Council member with the most flip-flops for the year and award them with … what else? A pair of flip-flops!

For our first flip-flop moment, we review the proceedings of the February 11, 2013 SLH Borough Council meeting and their discussion to schedule a date for a public meeting on a possible rezoning issues.

At 8:19 into the meeting, Councilwoman Patricia Cindea stated: “As far as notification of the residents, I don’t think the majority of the residents know when we have general meetings or when we don’t. A few of the people that come all the time, you realize we have meetings the second and fourth but, I don’t think the general public realizes that.”

However, fast-forward 11 minutes to 8:30, and the Councilwoman further states that: “I think it is better that is on a regular public meeting night because a lot of people already know about the regular public meeting.”

Check out the flip-flop action on our YouTube Channel by clicking the screen below:

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Council Debates Scheduling Special Meeting to Discuss Rezoning

At the Monday, February 11 Council meeting, the Council debated when to schedule a special meeting to discuss the possible rezoning along Route 71.

What should have been a simple matter of Council members providing the Borough’s Administrator with tentative dates they were available, the discussion turned into an over-half-an-hour long comedy routine wherein Councilwoman Patricia Cindea tried everything she could to derail the proceedings.

The issue began when Mayor Gavino “Butch” Maccanico began his report by announcing that a special session would be held so that residents could hear the details of the proposed rezoning along Route 71. Borough Administrator Jay Delaney provided the Council with calendar pages for February and March, outlining what dates were available. He asked that at least two weeks lead-time be given in order to notice the public appropriately.

Councilwoman Cindea asked what about early March. Councilman Thomas Vorbach made a motion for March 11. Councilwoman Cindea announced she would like the proceedings to be held as late as possible. Borough Attorney Fred Raffetto suggested that holding a meeting on a night other than the night of a regularly scheduled meeting would prevent any conflict of a long meeting and the regularly scheduled Council business.

Councilwoman Cindea then asked about notification and what residents would be notified. Administrator Delaney pointed out he had provided a map with the area of legally required notification highlighted in green. Councilwoman Cindea immediately disagreed with the legal requirements and said she wanted to spend $1,000 to notice the entire town.

Councilwoman Sara King was recognized and began to discuss what she felt they should do. Councilwoman Cindea repeatedly attempted to cut her off, until she was gaveled into silence by the Mayor. Councilwoman King then proceeded to discuss other options for notifying residents of a meeting, including placing a notice in the newspaper. “What newspaper?” Councilwoman Cindea sneered.

Councilwoman Cindea then went on to state that the whole town would be impacted by a large commercial development. Councilman Vorbach suggested March 4, but was then reminded this was the night the Environmental Commission met, even though this was indicated on the calendars distributed to the Council members. March 25 was then floated as a date.

Councilwoman Cindea declared that if she was going to vote on that date, it would only be because everyone in town would be notified. The Mayor then asked why she insisted on having the meeting on the night of a regular meeting and Councilwoman Cindea noted it was much easier for her. Councilman James Shuler noted that he would be away as this was the week before the Easter holidays.

The debate quickly disintegrated. Councilwoman Cindea asked why not meet in April. Councilwoman King felt this was getting too far out in time and also noted that Councilman Richard Diver was not in attendance and he was the liaison to the planning board. Councilwoman Cindea declared she could not meet in February or March. Councilwoman King suggested that each council member funnel dates through the Borough Administrator and let him sort out when everyone was available. The Mayor asked about early March and evenings other than Monday.

The debate continued over what date would work best, with Councilwoman Cindea countering each suggestion with a reason why she could not be there and ignoring other members when they noted that dates would not work for them. The discussion, which began at 8:16, ran until 8:47. The Council tentatively agreed on the evening of March 20 at 7:00 PM, and Administrator Delaney would check with the school to see if that facility were available in the event of a heavy turnout. “I’m hopeful the school will be available,” he said. “Hopeful, but not confident.”

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February 11 SLH Council Meeting Video Now on YouTube

Couldn’t make it to Monday night’s Council meeting? Hearing the buzz about what happened? You can revisit the action on our YouTube Channel, www.youtube.com/users/heightsonline