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Covering Hamilton and Robbinsville townships in-depth for The Trentonian. I can be reached at (609) 989-7800 ext. 207 or (609) 468-6962. Email me at or follow me @awisefool.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Hamilton council passes capital budget, contracts at meeting

Hamilton council talked mostly money matters at its meeting Tuesday night, passing several multi-million dollar contracts and capital bonds.
Council approved a $13.7 million contract with Central Jersey Waste and Recycling for trash disposal that runs through 2018. The company gave $1,000 to Mayor Kelly Yaede’s campaign for election on March 25, the same weekend as Yaede’s largest fundraiser of the year so far, the Mayor’s Ball.
Business administrator John Ricci said the contract was not subject to the township’s Pay-to-Play ordinance that restricts political donations for professional service contracts to $300. The contract with Central Jersey Waste and Recycling was done through an advertised bidding process, and above the $17,400 cap for the Pay-to-Play statute, he said.
“Once we go out for advertised bids, the Pay-to-Play ordinance does not apply,” he said.
Central Jersey was the lowest of three bidders, Ricci said; it beat out both Waste Management and another company called Republic. Ricci said the new contract, which is with the same company, will save the township $120,000 annually and trash collection will stay at twice a week, and was $1.5 million less than the second bidder, Waste Management.
Former Councilman Vinnie Cappodano said the donation and contract did not live up to the spirit of the Pay-to-Play law, even if it did not violate the letter. The contract is still subject to state-required contribution disclosures through the Election Law Enforcement Commission.
“They’ve got loopholes in their professional services ordinance that you could drive a garbage truck through,” he said. “I don’t think any company doing business with the township should be donating $1,000 to the mayor. I think that is totally wrong,”
You can read the full story here.


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