How Democratic Majority Council members Ed Aversa, Gloria Oh, Deborah Tsabari, Ellen Park and Jimmy Song colluded to work against the will of the people and surrendered our vibrant “trillion dollar mile” of commercial properties located on 9W to the residential developers.

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Event

Notes

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30/04/2019 Email from Borough Special Attorney Albert Wunsch proves Democratic Council Members entered a SECRET MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) with 800 Sylvan to settle and have the property rezoned to residential without informing the public or the Mayor. Email proves that the Democratic Council intentionally planned to hold one meeting so they could simultaneously introduce and vote to pass the ordinance in a coordinated effort to circumvent the public from asking questions.View Email
29/07/2019After recall petitions were filed against Ed Aversa and Gloria Oh, the Borough Council calls a special meeting to calm the public and files a resolution to litigate Normandy, all while simultaneously having a SECRET MOU to settle. At the meeting, 800 Sylvan’s lawyers were fully prepared with recording devices and court reporters to carefully document our councilpersons.Resolution 19-157 To litigate against 800 sylvan.
Borough never posted online. Excerpt found from court order Docket 6119-215, dated August 30, 2019
See Excerpt
29/06/2017Normandy’s Attorney, John Schepisi, submits an OPRA (Open Public Records Act) request for ANY and ALL records regarding the Borough’s affordable housing obligationsView Record
29/01/2019According to court documents filed by 800 Sylvan's attorneys under penalty of perjury, the Democratic Majority Council Members held a secret meeting with 800 Sylvan to begin settlement agreements to re-zone 800 Sylvan to residential without the public or the Mayor’s knowledge. Furthermore, the Democratic Council conveys there is a “new sheriff in town” and secretly planned to vote in favor of rezoning 800 Sylvan to residential “despite any public opposition” View Excerpt
27/08/2019Court strips the Borough of immunity from Builder’s Remedy lawsuits because the Governing Democratic Majority acted in bad faith. Flip flopping three times in 8 months. As per the Judge, “The court finds this to be an abuse of the process”Court Order Strips Borough of Englewood Cliffs ImmunityView Court Order
25/04/2019Borough Affordable Housing Committee members Ellen Park, Deborah Tsabari and Ed Aversa entered into a Memorandum of Understanding to settle.
According to the Borough Attorney, the Borough re-entered settlement negotiations because of potential exposure to an estimated $12.7 million cost to develop Hudson Terrace.
As per pg numbered 10/131 of court order filed on 1/2020
Was this an unlawful act done in secrecy? Three members of the council cannot enter into any commitment without a majority vote of the council done publicly. Does the court acknowledge this?
24/01/2019Democratic controlled council voted unanimously 6-0 to pass Resolution 19-51 approving its "Affordable Housing plan, prepared by Michael Mistretta, PP of Harbor Consultants dated December 10, 2018 that was formally adopted by the borough planning board plan to build 100% affordable housing on Hudson Terrace.

Council voted unanimously to pass resolution 19-52 agreeing to fund any shortfall of funds required for implementing a municipally sponsored construction of an affordable housing project.
pg. 10 Resolution 19-51 Build on Hudson Terrace

Resolution 19-60 Resolution creating new and abolishing old subcommittee

Pg. 11 Resolution 19-52 Funding of any Shortfall



View Resolution 19-51 and 19-52
19/07/2019Residents filed petitions to recall Ed Aversa and Gloria Oh’s council seats.Was it was the recall that sparked preceding events that forced 800 Sylvan's hand to take more aggressive defensive measures?
17/11/2017800 Sylvan tells Borough of their interest in offering a 20+ acre portion of theri 28 acre property for residential development.
The offer consisted of 600 homes of which 15% (rentals) or 20% (for sale) would be affordable
As per pg 7 of court order filed on 1/2020
17/09/2018Appellate Division issued order permitting 800 Sylvan's builders remedy lawsuit to proceed as of right.As per pg 8 of court order filed on 1/2020
17/09/2018Appellate Division issues order permitting 800 Sylvan's builders remedy lawsuit as a right.As per pg 8 of court order filed on 1/2020
17/01/2020Court finds RDP to be 174 Affordable Housing Units (Page 2)

ALL PAGES REFERENCED ARE PDF PAGES AND NOT ACTUAL NUMBERED PAGES ON DOCUMENT"
(Page 1) Court finds Borough to be constitutionally non-compliant
(Page 2) Court finds RDP to be 174 Affordable Housing Units
(Page 2) Court finds boroughs borough is not entitled to 20 unit rental bonus
(Page 2) Court finds in the event the Borough appeals, then RDP increases from 174 to 347
It is a constitutional right to appeal. How can the judge issue an order increasing the amount of RDP from 174 to 347 if the Borough decides to appeal?
(Page 5) Court finds as a matter of law that the proper application of the 20-percent cap requires the same result determined by Judge Jacobson
(Page 6) Court finds Borough gap present need and prospective need = 365 Units(capped)
(Page 8) Court finds it has based concerns that if 800 Sylvan remains corporate, it will go the way of Prentice Hall (New LG Building)
(Page 11) Court finds voluntary compliance is preferred and should be encouraged and builders remedy should be considered remedy of last resort
(Page 11) RDP Calculation at a glance:
+ 234 Units (Gap Period)
+ 219 Units (Prior Round)
= 453 Units
+ 418 Units (Prospective Obligation)
= 871 Units
* 20%
= 174 RDP
(Page 12) Court finds it is clear the Borough has chosen path of resistance to affordable housing
(Page 14) Court finds thrifd prong for builders remedy to exist. "Prong (3) the builder's site must be suitable"
The Borough's experts never contested 800 Sylvan's suitability according to its HEFSP (Housing Element, Fair Share Plan). WHY NOT?
(Pg 19 thru 28) Borough witness Michael Mistretta testimony for HEFSP and VLA (Vacant Land Analysis)
(Pg 28) Court finds although it accepted Micheal Mistretta as an expert in planning, his testimony demonstrated a lack of working knowledge of the relevant statutes, code an case law.
One one hand, the court accepts him as an expert and on the other it rejects his finding and conclusions due to lack of credentials, experience, inconsistencies and failure.

(Page 29) Court finds the Borough has not met its burden to show that its HEFSP properly calculated RDP. Therefore, the Borough is non-compliant.
(Page 29) Court finds Mistretta's credentials and experience to be far overshadowed by the credentials and experience of Powell, Kinsey and Special Master.
(Pg 29 thru 31) 800 Sylvan witness Dr. Powell summary of testimony of financial feasibility. Where is the the feasibility to burden of the taxpayer?
(Page 31) Court finds Dr Powell's testimony to be credible to the extent of the information provided to him by the Borough.
(Pg 31 thru 51) FSHC witness Dr. Kinsey's summary of testimony. Builds an aggressive case for high number of RDP
(Page 53) Kinsey admits he did not know of the current capacity to our school system
(Page 57) Court finds Kinsey to be a credible expert witness with impeccable credentials and experience and accords great weight to his testimony.
(Page 57) 800 Sylvan calls Patrica Ruskan. The court accepted Ruskan's testimony based on her education and experience as an expert in civil engineering. finds it has insufficient info upon which to make a determination regarding North Cliff Elementary School
(Page 59) Court finds Ruskan to be a credible expert witness and accords her testimony great weight.
(Page 59) 800 Sylvan calls Stuart Johnson. The court accepted Johnson's as an expert in Architecture and Land Planning
(Page 65) Court finds Johnson to be a credible expert witness and afford his testimony great weight.
(Page 65) 800 Sylvan calls Art Bernard.
(Page 69 thru 94) Bernard testified that the housing stock tells you Englewood Cliffs is exclusionary
(Page 69) Bernard testified he was present when Mistretta testified that Englewood Cliffs was a developed community.
(Page 69) Bernard testified that Mt Laurel 1 was limited to developed communities.
(Page 79) Bernard testified that it is good planning to have high density near a school but there is no mention of the school capacity
(Page 94) Court finds Bernard to be a credible withness with immense experience and knowledge and accords great weight to his testimony.
(Page 94) 800 Sylvan calls Jeffrey Otteau. The court accepted Otteau as an expert in field real estate analysis, economic feasibility and property evaluation focusing on two elements for the HEFSP for Englewood Cliffs
(Page 98) Court finds Otteau's testimony regarding tax credits not as persuasive as testimony given by Powell.
(Page 99) Court finds Otteau's testimony regarding acquisition, demolition, per unit costs credible and gives that testimony great weight.
(Page 100) Special Master, Mary Beth Lonergan testified as the final witness. 800 Sylvan calls Art Bernard.
(Page 114) Court finds Special Master's interpretation to be at odds with entire definition of "Overlay Zone"
(Page 114) Rule 5:93-1.3 Definition of "Overlay Zone"
(Page 115) Court finds Kinsey's reasoning and conclusions regarding the new LG site (Prestin Hall) for purposes of calculating RDP lawful, fair and reasonable.
(Page 116) Court finds , pursuant to NJAC 5:93-4.2(f) considering the character of the area surrounding the site and the need to provide housing for low and moderate income households, that the need for low and moderate income housing weights heavily with the court, particularly in light of the Borough'[s failure to provide a single unit of housing within the past 40 years.
(Page 116) Court finds 25 units per acre is the appropriate density to assign to net acreage of 27.03 acre resulting in RDP of 136
(Page 116) Court finds that the Borough's refusal to rezone 800 Sylvan for inclusionary zoning in 1997, together with the fact the property was vacant during the "snapshot" period selected by Mistretta, warrant inclusion of the property.
Yet on page 129, the court accords Mistretta's testimony as having little if any weight.
(Page 119) Court finds it is unclear whether the Borough has proposed suitable alternatives to the 800 Sylvan site
(Page 120) Court finds this is not a settlement. Borough lost its immunity, finding the Borough din not act in good faith. The Borough declined to settle.
There is no mention of the unlawful act of entering into a secret MOU."
(Page 121) Court finds that by rejecting the Sylvan site, the Borough has signal its intent to continue exclusionary practices.
(Page 123) Court finds Borough is not entitled to 20 Rental Bonus Credits and finds Boroughs Municipal plan to be non-compliant
(Page 125) Unmet need is defined NJAC 5.97-5.3A
(Page 126) Court finds the developed sites to include 800 Sylvan as unmet need sites and directs they should be affordable housing
(Page 127) Court finds 100 Sylvan for an additional unmet need overlay zone
(Page 127) Court finds the develop-able areas for sites to be set fort as Table 1 and special Master report on pages 14 and 15
(Page 127) Court finds 800 Sylvan to be available, suitable, develop-able, and approvable.
(Page 128) Court finds 800 Borough failed to disclose title issues in presenting HEFSP

(Page 51) Court finds it has insufficient info upon which to make a determination regarding North Cliff Elementary School
(Page 51) Court finds it has insufficient info upon which to make a determination regarding North Cliff Elementary School
View Court Order
13/04/2018Judge Toskos entered order dismissing 800 Sylvan's builders remedy lawsuit.As per pg 8 of court order filed on 1/2020
01/01/2025Democratic Majority Councilpersons Ed Aversa, Gloria Oh esq., Debora Tsabari, Ellen Park esq., and Jimmy Song esq. acted in bad faith

As per pg 14 of court order filed on 1/2020
Court found the Democratic controlled governing body wanted the court to believe that it negotiated in good faith for months with FSHC and 800 Sylvan, but the time, money and effort of the parties, the intervenor and the Special Master in reaching the terms of the MOU were all for naught in the face of public opposition.
Democratic Majority Council consisting of three attorneys misunderstood the definition of "good faith" when they deceived the public for months. Initially unanimously passing resolution 19-51 to passing resolution 19-157 on July 29 2019.
12/02/2020Court finds Englewood Cliffs most sound planning criteria to build 600 Units, of which 20% or 120 units would be affordable. Of the 600, 80 units would be attached for sale three-bedroom townhomes with 520 rental units in two buildings (pg 3)(Page 16 ) 800 Sylvan witness, Art Bernard, testified the standard to grant builders's remedies was established by the Supreme Court and entitles 800 Sylvan to the remedy where there are no environmental or other substantial planning concerns such that the plan is not contrary to sound land use planning.
(Page 18) Bernard testified that the 800 Sylvan site does not have environmental concerns that he is aware of which were not addressed by Ruskan or Clark

(Page 28) Court finds that 800 Sylvan proposes to provide a substantial amount of lower income housing and the proposed project accords with sound land use planning.
(Page 28) Court finds, based upon the unrefuted testimony of the Special Master and Mr. Bernard that Plan A, which includes an area of front yard parking with the concomitant result of reducing the height of the proposed parking deck, is the plan which best meets sound land use planning criteria.
View Court Opinion
10/07/2019During a special town meeting, a Straw poll was held with a 300 to 1 vote opposing the rezoning of 800 Sylvan to residentialThe 5 to 1 majority council did not approve the MOU nor did it adopt the ordinance regarding the settlement they were planning to secretly push through.

Dr. Powell gives presentation on how "the 800 sylvan project" will affect the public school system summarized as follows:
94 for sale large 3200-3700 sq ft, 3 to 4 bedroom town-homes.
226 market rate apartments
80 affordable apartments.
Giving it a multiplier of .3 or approximately 127 students costing $6k per student. Powell did not mention anything about any of the overlay zones or the market rate homes 800 Sylvan would build. He closes by saying that it is of his opinion that the newly enrolled children should not cause any new buildings to go up.
See video starting at 21:00:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zsVNSpLLqac&list=PLI5tZIAalzEkjp71sbdXRu-piC2F9qKdk&index=44

See video Part 7, 7:30: Resident ask for approximate costs. Surenian said that this can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bRd0Em513e4&list=PLI5tZIAalzEkjp71sbdXRu-piC2F9qKdk&index=41
09/01/2019Court denied the Borough's motion for reconsideration of the issues of bifurcation, discovery and the trial date. The court denied 800 Sylvan's motion to terminate immunity and trial was adjourned to March 5 2019.As per pg 9 of court order filed on 1/2020
07/06/2019Appellate Court stayed proceedings efore it untill August 1, 2019 pending settlement discussionsSettlement negotiations were never made public until after a recall was filed against Councilpersons Ed Aversa and Gloria Oh in July 2019. The Borough Council voted 6-0 to proceed with its Hudson Terrace plan. Settlement negotiations were done in secret by the Borough Affordable Housing Committee. This 3 member committee consisted of Ed Aversa, Deborah Tsabari and Ellen Park and was unlawful act. The council cannot make any decisions unless it is done publicly with a council majority vote
03/01/2019Democratic Council Members Edward Aversa, Gloria Oh, Ellen Park, Deborah Tsabari, and Jimmy Song take complete control of the Borough Council by a 5 to 1 margin. Was firing then borough attorney Anne Marie Rizzuto and appointing Albert Wunsch was an unlawful act? The Mayor by law was allowed to keep the services of the attorney for 30 days. Was this done to fast-track and hide communications for the purpose of settlement negotiations with 800 Sylvan?

10/01/2018Judge Toskos (retired) entered an order granting 800 Sylvan's motion to interveneAs per pg 8 of court order filed on 1/2020
06/11/2018Democratic Councilpersons Deborah Tsabari and Jimmy Song are elected after campaigning that they would appose residential housing at 800 Sylvan. Democrats would control council 5 to 1 in the new year.
01/10/2018Court entered an order ending mediation and scheduling trial for January 22, 2019As per pg 8 of court order filed on 1/2020
01/03/2018Court established a schedule for the parites to their positions on a confidential basis and attempt settlement. Under Republican control, the Borough was unable to reach agreement with FSHC.As per pg 8 of court order filed on 1/2020
07/12/2017In a confidential meeting that was recorded by a borough representative and filed with the court, Normandy’s COO, Georgios Vlamis stated Normandy was “always thinking about using the property for mixed use”View Record
01/11/2017After multiple Planning Board hearings, the DECISION to sub-divide 800 Sylvan was DENIED
01/05/2017800 Sylvan files a commercial application to subdivide to two commercial lots comprised of 20 acres and 8 acres
08/06/2020Court orders borough to move forward with affordable housing at 800 SylvanORDER TO ENFORCE LITIGANTS RIGHTS-Granted by Judge FARRINGTON, CHRISTINE, AView Court Order
21/12/2018Borough of Englewood Cliffs Records Deed Date
For Purchase Of:
476 Hudson Terrace
Englewood Cliffs
Block 513
Lot 7
Deed Date
2018-12-21
Deed Recorded:
Book: 3156
Page: 2354
Class: commercial

Sale Price
$1,900,000
Non-Usable Sale for Assessment
30/06/2020Mayor Mario Kranjac files complaint with NJ Superior Court against councilpersons Gloria Oh, Ed Aversa, Deborah Tsabari and Jimmy SongDocket #: BERL003775-20View Complaint

View Brief
30/06/2020Resident files complaint with NJ Superior Court against councilpersons Gloria Oh, Ed Aversa, Deborah Tsabari and Jimmy SongDocket #: BER-L-003781-20View Complaint

View Brief
View Exhibits
29/06/2020Borough Attorney Surenian Files Motion to ReconsiderPg 21 of Brief acknowledges 2,000 new homes in EC

Pg 13 of Powell Certification states that as many as 651 new public school children. 2018-19 school year had enrolled 805 students in its public schools. Thus increasing enrollment by a crushing 81%
View Brief
View Mistretta Certification
View Powell Certification
22/10/2018Court authorizes expenditure of $1,900,000 from the Borough's Affordable Housing Trust Fund to a facilitate the acquisition of 476 Hudson Terrace and 4 Clendinene Place for the purposes of constructing a 100% affordable housing project.As per pg 8 of court order filed on 1/2020
Would the court ever allow the expenditure of tax payer funds to purchase property if it did not believe the borough would act in good faith and proceed with its plan to build on Hudson Terrace?
View Order
10/06/2020Acting borough attorney Jason Bonica opines on motion to launch investigation against Democratic councilpersons.Opine @ 1:32:26Listen To Audio

Listen to Woo Resolution

Listen To Borough Attorney Opine
10/12/2018HOUSING ELEMENT AND FAIR SHARE HOUSING PLAN

HEFSHP
View Plan
03/01/2019Democratic Council takes control by a margin of 5 to 1

Democratic Council terminates current borough attorney

Council hires borough attorney Albert Wunsch
Did Democratic Councilmembers violate NJSA 40A:60-5 as per former Borough Attorneys opinion?

Notable Events:
Pg 2. Borough Attorney Anne Marie Rizzuto said there is a potential conflict of interest regarding Concilwoman Tsabari, who lives within 200 feet of 800 Sylvan. 

pg. 11 Adobt By-Laws of 2018 for 2019
Borough attorney stated Reorg Meeting is not a regular meeting, the Bylaws are not on the agenda.
These are laws that govern the town, we need two regular consecutive meetings to adopt bylaws.

pg. 13 Council improperly terminated Borough Attorney Rizzuto and broke state law. Borough attorney opined that council was violating state law.  NJSA 40A:60-5 Powers of the Mayor.  Section (g) The mayor shall nominate and, with the advice and consent of council, appoint all subordinate officers of the borough, unless the specific terms of the general law clearly require a different appointment procedure. He shall make his nomination to any such office within thirty days of that office becoming vacant.

pg 14 Council hires Albert Wunsh as Borough Attorney
View Meeting Minutes
17/04/2020Case Management OrderView Court Order
11/03/2020Resolution 20-70 PassedThe Borough is not willing to rezone the sites the Court has ordered it to rezone, enable the developers to argue that they have vested rights merely by filing a development application and thwart the Borough's ability to meaningfully secure appellate court review of rulings with which it disagrees for reasons the Appellate Division might very well find compelling
12/09/2018September 12, 2020 Meeting Ordinance 18-14 passed 3-0
Establishing Mandatory Inclusion of Affordable Housing Through Use of Percentage Set-Asides

Ed Aversa: Abstain
Ellen Park: Abstain
Gloria Oh: Abstain
Carol McMorrow: Yes
Mark Park: Yes
William Woo: Yes
View Ordinance 18-14
20/09/2018September 20, 2018 Special MeetingOrdinance 18-15 Authorizing the acquisition of real property for affordable housing. $1.96 Million appropriated to purchase of 476 Hudson Terrace and 4 Clendinen Place.View Ordinance 18-15
26/09/2018September 26, 2018 Special MeetingOrdinance 18-14 Establishing Mandatory Inclusion of Affordable Housing Through Use of Percentage Set-Asides AdoptedView Adopted Ordinance 18-14
08/11/2018November 8, 2020 Mayor and Council Meeting

A responsible government allows transparency. Two citizens were appointed on this committee. Why did Ed Aversa, Ellen Park, and Gloria Oh vote "No" to this resolution?

Less than two months later, Democratic Controlled Council abolishes this committee. Forms an UNAUTHORIZED three person committee consisting of Ellen Park, Ed Aversa and Deborah Tsabari. This secret committee began settlement negotiations immediately after forming.
Resolution 18-240 Creating of Ad-Hoc Committee Regarding Affordable Housing Litigation.
Roll Call (see minutes on borough website)
Ayes: Mary O;'Shea, Mark Park, William Woo
Nays: Aversa, Ellen Park, Gloria Oh
Committee shall consist of Borough Administrator, Planning Board Chair, two council persons, and two citizens.
View Resolution 18-240
08/07/2020July 8, 2020 Regular Mayor and Council MeetingDeborah Tsabari on record stating Albert Wunsch was paid $264K and not $500k
Minutes: 00:12:23 thru 00:14:48
08/07/2020July 8, 2020 Regular Mayor and Council MeetingJimmy Song on record stating Albert Wunsch does not have Affordable Housing Experience, and that he is a good negotiator

Video Mintues: 00:45:14.0 thru 00:47:11.0
08/07/2020July 8, 2020 Regular Mayor and Council MeetingDeborah Tsabari on record stating Albert Wunsch was brought on as a "negotiator".

Minutes:
00:48:08.0 thru 00:49:54.0
27/07/2020Borough Attorney Jeffrey Surenian submits correspondence to the court. Correspondence states Councilperson Woo was not aware of any settlement discussions and no resolution was passed by Mayor and Council authorizing Al Wunsch to engage in or re-start settlement discussions.View Correspondence
19/08/2019Mayor Kranjac receives letter from Borough Attorney Thomas Trautner that the Democratic Controlled Council does not authorized the Mayor to receive any correspondences.View Letter
16/04/2019Borough On behalf of the Borough of Englewood Cliffs, I would request that Your Honor make a
slight change to paragraph 3 of the proposed order to reword as follows: to replace “Borough of
Englewood Cliffs” with “Mount Laurel Subcommittee of the Borough of Englewood Cliffs”.
View Correspondence
19/04/2019Court Order Granted In the event that there is not a conceptual settlement as expressed in an MOU by April 2019 to which Mount Laurel subcomitteee of the Borough of Englewood Cliffs, ....View Court Order
28/07/2020Borough Attorney Jeff Surenian sends correspondence to the court stating Democratic Controlled Council wants to settleView Correspondence
20/03/2019Albert Wunsch hired as Special Attorney despite numerous residents complaints that there is not a quorum due to only 3 members present.View Meeting Minutes
07/08/2020In an OPRA Lawsuit, Closed session minutes are releasedClosed Session Minutes Released:
January 10, 2019
January 15, 2019
January 24, 2019
February 1, 2019
February 11, 2019
February 13, 2019
View Closed Session Minutes
10/06/2020Mayor and Council Meeting. Approval of Closed Session Minutes:

Jan 10, 2019
Jan 15, 2020
Jan 24, 2020
Feb 13, 2020
Watch Video
08/07/2020Council plows through closed session minutesFeb 1, 2019
Feb 11, 2019
Feb 13, 2013
Watch Video