Thursday, August 16, 2012

MORE COUNCIL STUFF

There were three “Unfinished Business” items on the agenda. One, the discussion on non-renewal of liquor license I have referred to in the report on the failed Ordinance. Another, the ShotSpotter fiasco has been well covered in the past two days by both Plainfield Today (Dan Damon) and Plaintalker II (Bernice Paglia) and there is little to add at this time. 

The third item was the vacant CFO position.  I agree with Damon; this was a subject that the City Administrator should have addressed instead of bucking it down to the Director of Administration and Finance. Director Restaino remarked that there had been three interested individuals in the position. Two had experience but either their salary demands exceeded the range authorized by Plainfield’s Ordinances or had accepted another position. The third had just received “his” certification and thus was inexperienced.

The latest plan was for the Mayor and Restaino to seek candidates at the League of Municipalities meeting (date not mentioned). Several questions remain  unanswered;  how aggressive has been the search for a CFO, Is Plainfield’s salary range unrealistic, and finally; what is the function (job description) of the newly employed “City Treasurer” who is supposedly a qualified CFO?

Among the Resolution was item Z5 is for approval of a $48, 3354.00 increases in the contract award to Procom Systems Inc. to extend the demolition and construction of space  for the upgraded 9-1-1 center and CCTV command center in the basement of the Police Headquarters.  Several Councilors questioned the  amount since the space found was a very small area.

There have been on previous agendas resolutions for extra contracts for additional engineering work on this project necessitated by the “discovery” of a small empty space behind a wall in the area being converted. 

Unanswered is the mystery why this was not accounted for in the original contracts; there must have been blue prints available for study before new plans were drawn. Once again the ultimate cost has changed from that which the Council approved.

The positive about these unexpected extra costs in the CCTV Center is that this is not a prefabricated building purchased by Recreation. Yet there is a similarity in that original cost approved by the Council did not cover the entire project, it is sort of a curve ball.

For those who do not recall the  Bryant Park 2008  Taj Mahal restrooms; it was presented to the Council as a $124,000 pre-fabricated unit that would only need plumbing and electrical hookups to be operational. The final cost was  $272,432.

I will have a day or two to comment on some of the Resolutions that will be acted upon Monday.

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