Saturday, May 6, 2017


More than two weeks after the firm hired to remove leaves collected by the township last fall refused to remove them the smelly piles are still there at the recycling center on Boyden Ave.

And its unclear when they will be removed.

"Yes, the leaves are still there," Township Administrator Joe Manning said via email Friday. "We are having some technical difficulties in finding a firm to remove them due to some regulation issues, which I do not want to go into until they get resolved. We are moving along but are dealing with the state of N.J. and they move to the beat of their own drummer."

The problem began when S. Rotondi & Sons of Chatham was chosen from among six firms who bid for the removal contract way back in January. 

Originally, the lowest bid was $6.87 per cubic yard (or $109,920) from Mazza Mulch Inc. of Tinton Falls, according to a memo from Public Works Director Calvin Bell to Manning.

See that memo HERE.

But S. Rotondi & Sons initially contested the awarding of the contract to Mazza, claiming the firm did not possess the proper N.J. Department of Environmental Protection permit to haul the leaves. 

Bell reviewed Mazza's qualifications and found it did not have the permit and could not haul the 700 cubic yards of leaves required under the contract.

Bell indicated he then sought to award the contract to the second-lowest bidder, Marilyn Haggerty Farms of Washington. N.J. But a review of its bid found it lacked some proper certificates to operate within the contract.

Bell then suggested awarding the contract to S. Rotondi & Sons, which came in third with a bid of $6.94 per cubic yard (or $110,040).

But there was an initial delay in late February when Mazza objected to the awarding of the contract to Rotondi & Sons, claiming his firm could handle the job. The TC tabled approval until a review of Mazza could be completed.

Two weeks later, on March 7, the TC denied Mazza's objection and awarded the contract to Rotondi & Sons.

But at the April 18 TC meeting Manning revealed that Rotondi had refused to remove the leaves, prompting the TC to pass an emergency resolution that allows Manning to hire another firm without bids so that they can be removed quickly.

As he stated above, however, that is still up in the air. And so is the obnoxious odor of the leaves that continues to permeate the Boyden Avenue area near the recycling center.

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