HOWELL – Township officials approved the preservation of a 30-acre tract of land on Fort Plains Road as open space.
The governing body recently finalized the purchase of the property through the passage of a capital ordinance that was introduced by Councilman Thomas Russo last month.
During the latest council meeting those present voted in the affirmative for the measure.
“This is one of those purchases where the land is buildable and it is worth the money to purchase,” Councilwoman Pamela Richmond said last month.
Through the ordinance, Howell would appropriate $1,060,000 to purchase the land from the United Talmudical Academy. The ordinance allows for any grant money that the township receives to be applied toward the cost of the purchase.
Funds in Howell’s Open Space and Recreation Trust Fund are available for the sale.
In other news, Council members recently voted on a resolution providing for a special insertion of revenue in the 2020 budget of the township involving the awarding to Howell the amount of $93,357 from the United States Department of Justice Community Policing Development micro grant.
The subject of music at the township’s Sunday Farmers Market was discussed earlier in the summer. There was a concern that musical entertainment might need to be reviewed but the situation had been worked out. The Farmers Market will continue on for several more weeks.
Resident Kathleen Cohan is a frequent visitor to the Farmers Market held in front of the Township Municipal Building each Sunday. “I go most Sundays and enjoy the mellow music. What a great upgrade for the market and the price was right (free) and there are a lot of underutilized artists at this COVID-19 time that would be happy to keep coming.”
“I was upset to see on Facebook that you were considering shutting down the Howell’s Farmer’s Market due to a one-man band playing for two hours. The music was just a nice touch. People that go to the Farmers Market as it is a nice outing. I have bought my produce and plants since the opening and feel I am helping our local businesses and farmers by making my purchases there. At this time of uncertainty, it would be wrong of you to close this down if that is your intention,” resident Margaret A. Howell said.
She added, “please let people have one nice thing in Howell without politics getting into the middle of it.”
Residents Dorothy and Mike Turner submitted a comment to the council thanking Joan Osborne and those involved with putting on the Farmers Market noting the value of the fresh foods present and that the event was something that brought the community together for “health and emotional wellbeing.”
Township Attorney Joseph Clark had noted that there had been a communication issue regarding an incident earlier in the summer and that a request was made for the operating committee of the Farmers Market to temporarily suspend musicians at the weekly event but that request went unheeded the following week due to a misunderstanding.
The situation has since been resolved and musical programs have continued to perform at most of the weekly Farmers Markets.
Jessica Brown asked the governing body about Tyrpak Road who asked about a development that was set to be built north of the dead-end portion of the road “would have an access point on Tyrpak Road. Will the dead-end be taken away?”
Township Attorney Joseph Clark provided an update on Tyrpak Road saying, “there has been some controversy about the addition of more parcels into the service area. We have reached out to Tyrpak Road’s attorneys to confirm if there is development intended on those parcels and we have been notified that they are not intended for development that they are going to be used for ingress and egress.”
Clark added, “we are working with them to amend the developer’s agreement to insure that is clear in there.”