Demolition Funding Delayed Until After Election
Approval of the demolition funding ordinance for the American Legion has been postponed until after the November election
Once again the American Legion has received a grace period from its potential demolition after the River Edge Mayor and Council opted to delay discussing and voting on a funding ordinance until after the November election. The delay also affords the borough's Planning Board to determine how the demolition fits into the Master Plan.
The governing body had initially decided to delay voting on allocating $45,000 towards the demolition from the 2012 capital budget on Sept. 17 to this week as Council members Paul Cordts and Kathleen Murphy were absent from the meeting.
The borough had decided in late August along party lines to move forward with the removal of the Dutch-Colonial building that is plagued with flooding and mold issues. Prior to that, River Edge received a 329-page document by Brinkerhoof Environmental Services providing an inconclusive report for the River Edge American Legion Phase 1 Environmental Site Assessment, which could not prove the existence of an underground oil tank on site along with any use of lead paint or asbestos inside the building.
The Dutch Colonial-style building is approximately between 80 to 90 years old but has suffered from flooding and mold issues in the basement after the electricity to the building had been turned off. Considered not ADA compliant, architect Peter Pulice provide an estimate that put renovation costs running between $300,000 to $1.3 million.
But recently Mayor Sandy Moscaritolo has received a new quote for mold removal at just over $25,000. At the same time, Moscaritolo, Cordts and Councilman Alphonse Bartelloni met with a contractor which placed rehabiltiation costs, not including the mold removal, at about $200,000.
The Planning Board will meet tonight, 8pm to discuss the demoltion and its impact on the Master Plan.