Ogdensburg to get back $225K from state


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  • Councilman Anthony Nasisi explains borough hall maintenance projects.




  • Gary Whyte asks the council to adopt a resolution recognizing awareness for FOP.




  • Councilman George Hutnick discusses the Sugar Sweet Farms' animal petting zoo for Ogdensburg Day.



Mayor Steve Ciasullo announced on Aug. 14 that Ogdensburg will receive back $225,000 as a result of scoring well on the N.J. State “Best Practices” questionnaire.

He added, once again, Ogdensburg will receive 100 percent of the designated funding.

Councilman Peter Opilla said he is trying to track down the Beardslee Hill Dr. Loop repair easement. He said, he may need to talk directly to the resident about access to the property.

Ciasullo said Elizabethtown Gas picked up surveys at borough hall; and they will wait to send another town mailer until after the Aug. 15 survey results are analyzed.

After council discussion and agreement, Councilman George Hutnick will reserve Sugar Sweet Farms' baby animal petting zoo for Ogdensburg Day, Sept. 9, at no cost to the borough.

Councilman David Astor asked about possible liability. Borough Attorney Richard Brigliardo suggested checking Sugar's current farm insurance.

Hutnick also said he is looking for more music to play at Ogdensburg Day.

Opilla said, a fishing contest will take place from 8:30–11:30 a.m. of Ogdensburg Day with prizes from 11:30 a.m. until noon. If residents wish to donate items, they should contact Opilla or Councilman Anthony Nasisi.

After heavy rains, Nasisi said they will patch a small leak around the chimney of borough hall. He also mentioned intermittent leaking around the Yankee gutters, fixing the roof possibly in the future, getting rid of the costly Yankee gutters, and adding funds in next year's budget.

Next, Nasisi said he ordered actual stone facing for the Heater's Pond “shack,” from Route 23 Patio, at around $1,000. He continued, he will organize a team of volunteers to complete the work.

Council President Rachel Slater said the head lifeguards cleaned out the shack, and it looks much better. Also, the last lifeguard day is Tuesday, Sept. 5 at Heater's Pond.

Nasisi said, the Heater's Pond Committee is planning two movies, Friday, October 13: “It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” and “Friday the 13th.” There will also be: bobbing for apples, painting pumpkins, and Ogdensburg Recreational Association provided snacks: nachos, popcorn, and candies. Residents are to bring their own refreshments.

Nasisi discussed possibly placing a shed at the pond, near the starting dock.

Ciasullo reminded, they need to get a permit, and it should look good.

During public comment, Gary Whyte asked the council to adopt a resolution recognizing awareness for Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva (FOP). FOP is a rare disease where muscle, tendons, and ligaments are replaced by forming bone outside the skeleton. Whyte's friend's daughter had neck muscle turning into bone and growing all the way down to her hip. Other debilitating bones grew in her right arm and left leg. He said, at the age of 24, she is currently locked into a specially built wheelchair.

For 16 years, Whyte has completed fundraisers and written to all 566 municipalities in N.J., asking for resolutions of continued awareness and FOP research. As of August, he received his 508th proclamation.

In addition, the N.J. Assembly and N.J. Senate will vote on Assembly Joint Resolution 147 and Senate Joint Resolution designating April 23 as FOP Awareness Day. On April 23, 2016, researchers discovered the gene causing the disease, and currently, they are in Phase II of clinical trials for potential drug treatment to slow the progression of bone growth. Whyte said, seven people in N.J. have the disease.

The council agreed to place the FOP resolution on the next meeting agenda.

Whyte also showed two thick binders of his awareness initiative resolutions to be turned over to the N.J. Historical Society after he has received the 566th proclamation. Resident Jean Castimore asked how long it will take to fix the fire hydrant on Main St., across from Edison Ave. Officials will verify.

Mike Nardini, also part of the Heater's Pond Committee, said he is working on lure donations and DEP questions regarding fish stocking for Heater's Pond. Also, in light of lowering the pond for the dam armoring, he was wondering about the effect on stocking.

Officials referred him to the regional biologist.


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