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Wall Township, New Jersey
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Abridged Report Executive Committee Meeting

Abridged Report with Attachments

ABRIDGED REPORT EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEETING

NEW JERSEY STATE FIREMEN’S ASSOCIATION

WALL TOWNSHIP NJ

May 15,2021

The meeting was called to order by President Ordway at 9:00A.M. in accordance with the New Jersey Open Public Meetings Act. He stated that notice of this meeting was posted on the New Jersey State Firemen’s website as required pursuant to the provisions of the Open Public Meetings Act (Chapter 231, P.L. 1975). The fire exits were pointed out.

Vice President Hankins led everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.

A Moment of Silence was observed for our deceased members and friends. Executive Committeeman Mellert then gave the invocation.

ROLL CALL:

Roll call was held. First Assistant Secretary Brian Martone announced that all members were present except for Assistant Counsel Morris who was excused.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

The Abridged Minutes and Verbatim Minutes of the February 22, 2020 Executive Committee Meeting were approved as distributed on a motion by Executive Committeeman Speigel seconded by Executive Committeeman Scheuer. Motion Carried.

COMMUNICATIONS:

Secretary Pelaia announced the following: All communications received were forwarded to the Officers and the Executive Committee and will be made part of the record.

A Motion was made by Executive Committeeman Walker, seconded by Executive Committeeman Fazekas, to accept the communications. Passed

OFFICERS REPORT:

Vice President Hankins report: In addition to his written report his verbal remarks were:

He has put in the packets his most current Facebook post which he posts after each Advisory Committee Meeting

Secretary’s Report: In addition to his written report his verbal remarks are:

1) There are 2 resolutions in your packet that need to be voted on under New

Business for the State Treasurer to release the monies from the 999 account.

2) Election petitions for the Executive Committee are due June 1, 2021. Petitions are available online or here at the office.

3) We have received petitions for Home Manager from every county scheduled to have an election this year.

4) We received 100% of the Report of Delegates and Alternates Elected. Delegate Cards are now being prepared and will be sent to the Secretaries along with the new and replacement Life Member cards in June. Changes to Delegates must be received 1 week prior to a caucus or August 31 for the Convention.

5) Reports that were mandatory to be submitted went very well. Those secretaries who had problems, called our office and we assisted them in solving the problem. REMINDER: If you have an issue submitting reports online, call us immediately and someone will assist you.

First Assistant Secretary Report:

Our Age Bills A4715 and S3277 are scheduled to be heard on Thursday May 20 in the Senate Law and Public Safety Committee. If approved, it will go to the full Senate hopefully the first week of June and then if passed goes to the Governor for his signature.

Second Assistant Secretary Report: No Report

Treasurer Report:

1)Treasurer Mullen reported that he met with the Finance Committee on May 10th and answered any questions which they had.

2) He is scheduled to meet with our Auditing Firm during the first week of June regarding our quarterly Audit reports.

3) He thanked the officers and staff for their assistance during his transition period.

Field Examiner Report: In addition to his written report, his verbal remarks were:

1) The Financial standing Report for 2020 is in your packets

2) There is a chart in the packets which show which Bank Statements still have not been received. He asked the Executive Committee to follow up with the Associations in their County.

3) Field Exams will probably begin again after the Convention. Tentatively he would like to do the exams that were due in 2020 to be done in the fall of 2021, 2021 exams in the spring of 2022 and the 2022 Field Exams in the fall of 2022. That should put us back on track.

Counsel Cavallo reported: No report for the regular session.

President’s Report: The President had no written report. His verbal remarks are:

1) The State Office will be closed on May 31 for the Memorial Day Holiday. The office will also be closed for our summer break beginning on

July 5 and the Office will reopen on July 12.

2) Congratulations to all Local Officers and Executives for having 100% of the First Quarter Relief Reports, and the 2021 Delegates Report received on time. At this time, we have three (3) Associations not being seated at Convention this year. He reminded everyone that the IRS 990 forms are due to the IRS by this weekend and a copy due in our office on June 14.

3) On April 30, 2021 $10,995,600.00 was wired to the Firemen’s Home, On May 14, 2021, $16,049,008.64 was wired to 537 Associations and one check for $49,475.83 will be hand delivered. The total amount going to the Associations was $16,095,484.47.

4) He asked if the Executives have missing Email and phone numbers for the Local Officers, please get them to Secretary Pelaia.

5) With any of online reports, if anyone has a problem, no matter how minor it may seem do not hesitate to call the office so that we can assist you in having the problem corrected. We do a lot of BETA testing but that never catches every issue or problem.

6) The website is a work in progress. There is more to come.

7) The president acknowledged that many members continue to use bankstatements@njsfa.com and localreports@njsfa.com to submit documents and encouraged everyone to use those methods to submit their documents.

8) He reminded everyone of the Reports that are Mandatory to be done online:

  1. a) Quarterly Relief Reports
  2. b) Officer Listings
  3. c) Initial Notice of Death (Form 300)
  4. e) Maintenance Form
  5. f) Election of Delegate Form (both Relief and Exempt)

9) The President gave year to date comparisons for Healthcare, and Special and Supplemental Relief (see attached sheet).

10) He informed every one of the passing of James Greshak, Chairman of the Finance Committee. He has appointed committee member Robert Keppler as the new Chairman and the President will be filling the vacancy shortly.

11) Caucuses: Per the Executive Committees vote at the last meeting, there will be a walk-through election. Voting: Elections will be held for the Executive Committeeperson and a Home Manager if the county is scheduled to have a manager election. There will be one paper ballot (as was last year) used for the Delegate and Life Members to cast their ballot. Petitions to have the Executive Committeeperson and Managers printed on the ballot are due in the State office by the close of business (4pm) on June 1, 2021. There will be no payment for attending the caucus but there will be a $100 penalty from the delegates convention expenses if a delegate or his alternate does not attend the Caucus. Delegate changes are due in the Office 1 week prior to the caucus.

12) Convention: Per the Executive Committees vote at the last meeting, a walk- through election is scheduled for Friday, September 17. Hours will be between 9am and 3pm. Petitions for Officer Positions are due in the State Office by the close of business, June 1, 2021. A schematic of the Convention Hall setup is attached to the minutes. Delegates who register will receive credit for two days attendance. Delegates changes for Convention are due by August 31.

13) Convention Workers: President Ordway reminded the Executives that the people that they choose should be able to stand for long periods of time. We need to move the Delegates and Life Members through the voting session expeditiously.

14) 5 Mile Beach Association: Executive Committeeman Speigel reported that the 5 Mile Beach Association is planning to do business as usual at this year’s Convention. This means the Tents, Apparatus, and the Parade.

EXECUTIVE SESSION: On a motion by Executive Committeeman Florio seconded by Executive Committee Kelly the meeting went into Executive Session at 9:32am. Executive Session was concluded at 10:15am

COMMITTEE REPORTS:

ADVISORY/ SPECIAL / SUPPLEMNTAL COMMITTEE: Executive Committeeman Mellert stated that the reports are in your packet.

COMPENDIUM COMMITTEE: Report is in your packet and there are items that need to be voted on under New Business,

DELEGATE AND LIFE MEMBER COMMITTEE: Executive Committeeman Kelly reported that there is a report in your packet. There will be no increase from the Delegate/Life Member scale approved last year except that the Commuter Allowance has been adjusted for a one-day Convention.

FINANCE COMMITTEE: Treasurer Mullen reported that the Finance Committee report is in the packets. .

FIREMEN’S HOME COMMITTEE: Chairman Otterbein submitted a report that was in everyone’s packet. He stated that there have been several Board of Managers meetings since our last meeting and the Home Legislation A-5210 is on hold. There was some discussion at the last Managers meeting regarding if a manager must be a member of the NJSFA. Chairman Frato then formed an Election Committee to discuss this and if petitions to have the Candidate for Manager to have his name on the Ballot is necessary.

HEALTH CARE ASSISTANCE COMMITTEE: Chairman Reeves reported the following: His written report has been distributed. He also mentioned that when they review Special and Supplemental Relief Applications, if they see a possible need for Health Care that they reach out to the member to see if they qualify for the Health Care Program. Executive Committeeman Naylis inquired if we are reviewing the amount the spouses receive, to see if an increase is warranted. President Ordway said that we will be reviewing that next year when we can have a full year comparison with all the changes to old and new programs that we have started.

INVESTMENT COMMITTEE: Executive Committee Handlin reported that a report is in the packet. He spoke to Treasurer Mullen and expects to have a committee meeting shortly.

LEGISLATIVE: First Assistant Secretary Martone stated the report was is in the packet. The Age Bill is being heard by the Senate Law and Public Safety Committee on Thursday May 20. He explained to everyone how to go online to support the bill. Executive Committeeman inquired if there was a certain time that you had to log in. Chairman Martone stated that the Legislature requires the comments to be submitted by 3pm the day prior to the hearing. Executive Committeeman Naylis recommended that the members of the Legislative Committee along with our members who live in the district of the Law and Public Safety Committee Members to contact them directly and ask for their support.

Long Range Planning Committee: No Report

PENSION COMMITTEE: Vice President Hankins advised the Committee that there was one officer added and there was one death whereby that member was removed. Executive Committee Naylis stated that he saw in a report that the pension had a loss. It was explained that in the past several years there was less money put into the Pension Fund than previous years before that. The Pension Fund is solvent. What is shown is the money is less than what we put in in previous years. We are currently awaiting the amount of money that we need to put in from our Pension fund managers for this year.

RESOLUTION COMMITTEE: There were several Resolutions submitted from local Associations for this year’s Convention. All of them addressed the same issue. Counsel Cavallo will have a meeting with the committee shortly and will have a report by the first week in June.

SALARY COMMITTEE: Salary Committee report is in your packet a recommendation will be made under New Business.

FIRE SAFETY COMMISSION – Executive Committeeman Naylis who is a member of the Commission reported that there is a Commission meeting set for the week of June 17.

APPLICATIONS: None currently.

OLD BUSINESS:

1) Barnegat Light- We are still waiting for their Paperwork for Admission.

2) As mentioned at the last week we had a request from the Ridgefield Association to remove a member for theft of finds from the Fire Company. A hearing was scheduled, and the member did not show. Action will be taken under New Business.

NEW BUSINESS:

1) A motion was made by Executive Committee Mazzarella, seconded by Executive Committeeman Mellert to re-appoint James Kenny to the position of Field Examiner for the 2021-2022 term. Passed 21-0.

2) A motion was made by Executive Committeeman Fazekas, seconded by Executive Committeeman Lenarski to reappoint Frank Cavallo as Counsel, and George Morris as Assistant Counsel for the 2021-2022 term. Passed 21-0

3) A motion was made by Executive Committeeman Kelly and seconded by Executive Committeeman Scheuer to adopt a resolution to requisition the funds from the State Treasurer for the 999 account. Passed 21-0

4) President Ordway said that the Budget for 2021-2022 was distributed. A motion was made by Executive Committeeman Kelly seconded by Executive Committeeman Lane to accept the budget as presented. Executive Committeeman Naylis inquired if we were to change the percentages based on the assets, we received from the Insurance Companies. President Ordway stated that in last year’s budget we anticipated with the change from 52/48 to 56/44 that a 1.4-million-dollar shift in the monies going out to the field. He also mentioned that reviewing the Budget he realized that the cost of operating the Office stayed flat and The Health Care and Special Relief funds have grown substantially. On a Roll Call Vote passed 21-0.

5) A motion was made by Executive Committeeman Phillips, seconded by Executive Committeeman Otterbein to accept the Salary Proposed effective October 1, 2021, with corrections. On a Roll Call Vote Passed 21-0

6) A motion was made by Executive Committeeman Otterbein, seconded by Committeeman Kurdyla to accept the 2021 Relief Scale. On a Roll Call Vote Passed 21-0.

7) A Motion by Executive Committeeman Figueroa, seconded by Mr. Speigel to keep the Delegate amount the same as proposed last year and Life Members will receive ½ of the Delegate Allowance. The allowance for commuters has been adjusted to reflect a 1 day Convention. On a Roll Call Vote passed 21-0.

8) A request was made by the Ridgefield Firemen’s Relief Association to remove Dennis Salvaty from the State Association’s Rolls for theft of funds from the Fire Company. Mr. Salvaty plead guilty in court. A hearing by the Advisory Committee was set for April 1, 2021, and Mr. Salvaty never showed up. A motion was made by Executive Committeeman Mellert seconded by Executive Committeeman Roemmich to remove Mr. Salvaty from the Association. On a Roll Call Vote Passed 21-0

9.1) The Compendium Committeeman reviewed Counsel Cavallo’s recommendation replacing an Executive Committeeman or Board of Manager to the Firemen’s Home. He stated that the first part of Section 6 remains the same. With regard to the Board of managers the following is recommended "Any vacancy occurring in the Board of Managers within 60 days from the date set for the annual county caucus may be filled during the Annual County Caucus provided there is at least 30 days’ time to notify the members of that County of their availability for that position. If less than 30 days’ time, the President as authorized herein shall appoint a person to fill the vacancy until the next annual following caucus unless that is the last year of the term, in which case the appointed person shall serve until the end of that term. "Interested members shall immediately submit a letter of interest to the First Assistant Secretary to be placed on the ballot for the unexpired term." A motion by Executive Committeeman Kelly, seconded by Executive Committeeman Florio to adopt these changes. On a Roll Call Vote Passed, 21-0.

9.2)Executive Committeeman Lane then discussed that there are no requirements for the office of President Emeritus. He requested that the Compendium Committee study this and come up with a criterion. President Ordway agreed.

9.3)Chairman Lane stated that the committee reviewed Executive Lenarski’s request that Local Associations be permitted to purchase plaques or gifts for retiring members. The Compendium Committee reviewed it and agreed to keep the current policy in place.

Public Comment:

There was no Public Comments.

GOOD OF THE ORDER:

1) There was discussion by Executive Committeeman Speigel regarding the denial of a Burial Benefit to a member who resigned in in 1969 with 78 months of Qualified Service and had an Exempt Certificate. He feels that the member had 6 months of service in his final year which would have given him the 84 months. After much discussion it was stated that although this member an Exempt Certificate, that does not prove Qualifying time. If documentation can be provided that this member performed Qualifying time in his last six months, a Burial Benefit will be granted.

2) Vice President Hankins stated that prior to the pandemic he was working with “Wills for Heroes”. It is a group of Lawyers who come in and assist wills and Power of Attorney. Now that things are beginning to open, he would like to restart to begin this program. He will keep everyone advised of this.

3) Executive Committeeman Naylis asked that the Long-Range Planning Committee see what other benefits can be offered our members.

4) Executive Committeeman Kelly asked about petitions for the Board of Managers that was mentioned in Executive Committeeman Otterbein’s report. He questioned if the Managers were going to run their own Caucus? President Ordway stated that he has not done much Homework on it and there is no point to discuss it at this time.

5) Executive Committeewoman Badger questioned that rather sending approximately 100 pages of documentation with a Relief Application, is it possible that they submit on a DVD or other type of media. Field Examiner Kenny replied that he is only looking for a snapshot of one month’s bills and income. He stated that the documentation for income is generally lacking, and more emphasis needs to be put on income documentation.

6) 2nd Assistant Secretary Dreby thanked the Salary Committee for their decision made at today’s meeting. He said the adjustments are a critical part of the process and he thanked them for their work.

ADJOURNMENT: On a motion by Executive Committeeman Florio, seconded by Executive Committeeman Naylis the meeting was adjourned at 11:19am.

Respectfully submitted,

Thomas J. Pelaia

Secretary

 
 
 

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