Sustainable Jersey Community Certification Report

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This is the Sustainable Jersey Certification Report of Haddon Heights Boro (Camden), a Sustainable Jersey bronze certified applicant.

Haddon Heights Boro (Camden) was certified on October 13, 2015 with 150 points. Listed below is information regarding Haddon Heights Boro (Camden)’s Sustainable Jersey efforts and materials associated with the applicant’s certified actions.

Contact Information

The designated Sustainable Jersey contact for Haddon Heights Boro (Camden) is:

Name:Kelly Santosusso
Title/Position:Borough Clerk / Clerk's Office
Address:625 Station Avenue
Haddon Heights, NJ 08035
Phone:856-547-7164 x 24

Sustainability Actions Implemented

Each approved action and supporting documentation for which Haddon Heights Boro (Camden) was approved for in 2015 appears below. Note: Standards for the actions below may have changed and the documentation listed may no longer satisfy requirements for that action. Additionally, points associated with actions prior to 2013 certifications may not be accurate.

  • Animals in the Community

    Pledge Supporting NJ Wildlife Action Plan

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    The Pledge of Municipal Support for New Jersey's Wildlife Action Plan was discussed with individual Council members informally over the summer months and was initially reviewed and approved by the Environmental Commission. Council requested that the Planning & Zoning Board (PZB) review the Pledge to confirm that the elements did not conflict with existing Ordinances and would meet the expectations of residents as well as the municipality. Sustainable Haddon Heights and our Borough liaison, Councilman Stephen Berryhill, presented the brief version of the Pledge of Support for the NJ Wildlife Action Plan to the PZB at their October meeting as well as provide the entire plan via PDF to all Council members and each of the Planning & Zoning Board members. The PZB included the Borough Engineer, Bach Associates, who was aware of the NJ Wildlife Action Plan. All agreed that there did not appear to be conflicts with existing Ordinances or plans and that since we had no known endangered species, it would be relatively easy to follow the guidelines and intent of the pledge. Borough Council unanimously approved Resolution 2013:190 at their November 6 meeting.

  • Arts & Creative Culture

    Establish a Creative Team

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    * The role of our Creative Team is to encourage and promote local artists and their events, as well as provide and promote venues to showcase their talents. We will also work with other regional Creative Teams in Burlington, Camden and Gloucester Counties as opportunities arise. * Our initial list of candidates was accepted by Borough Council by Resolution 2103:191 and our current Creative Team was appointed by Resolution 2015:26, dated January 3, 2015 - (page 4 - highlighted). * One of our continuing projects is to Celebrate the Arts on the Business Association's Community Calendar. Promotion of the various plays and musicals of The Ritz Theatre, Village Playbox, and Baptist High School are featured in one-time ad spaces, with residents able to enter-to-win tickets to the various venues at business association members through-out the year. Tickets are bartered in return for the ad space, so no out-of-pocket expenses are incurred by our local arts organizations or the business association members. * In 2014, the Creative Team sponsored the first Music & Arts Festival following the Independence Day Parade. In 2015, the Creative Team will manage the Performance Showcase at the annual Fall Festival on October 3, in partnership with the Haddon Heights Business & Professional Association. The high school student members will do most of the management of this event, including recruiting a volunteer student team to handle vendor and performers check-in and the Kids Zone.

  • Community Partnership & Outreach

    Create Green Team

    10 Points Bronze Mandatory

    Program Summary:

    The Borough of Haddon Heights established the Green Initiatives Committee by Resolution on January 3, 2009. Since then, the committee has been re-appointed at the annual re-organization Council meeting, held on the first Saturday in January, until 2015, when the Green Team replaced the Green Initiatives Committee with a complete roster of municipal staff and community volunteers. The purpose of the Green Team continues to be to educate the community on practical, cost-effective ways to forge a sustainable path into the future. We partner with local stakeholders to increase awareness of environmentally positive practices and principals, primarily Sustainable Haddon Heights, and then Camden County officials, other municipal green teams, Board of Education members, the Haddon Heights Business & Professional Association, Civic and Faith-based groups. Additionally, our members are advocates of sustainability legislation and practices that balance ecology, the economy and the long term needs of a healthy society at all levels of government. 2014 ACTIVITIES & EVENTS * Farmers Market Community Outreach - SUNs, May 4 - Oct 26, 2014 (26 dates) * Social Media Workshop - rescheduled from Q4 to Q1 2015 due to schedule conflicts * Sustainable Haddon Heights Special Event Signage Developed 2015 ACTIVITIES & EVENTS * Social Media Workshop #1 – 2015.01.24 * Social Media Hands On Workshop #2 – 2015.02.28 * i-Tree Street Inventory – 2015.04.18 * Tree Sapling Grant & Distribution – 2015.04.18 * Community Outreach Facilitator appointed – 2015.05.01 * Community Outreach Program Focus Calendar – 2015.05.03 – 2015.10.25 * Camden County Green Fair participation - 2015.05.16

  • Municipal Energy Initiatives

    Energy Tracking and Management

    10 Points Bronze Priority Silver Priority

    Program Summary:

    Background: The Borough of Haddon Heights' Green Initiative Committee members have been working on energy opportunities since 2009. These same members are part of Sustainable Haddon Heights (SHH), a private 501(c)(3), that was formed in 2011 to focus entirely on environmental opportunities as well as apply for grants that our municipality would not qualify for. Volunteers from Sustainable Haddon Heights have worked closely with the Borough Finance Department by developing formula-based Excel worksheets so that energy usage and costs could be easily tracked and used for budget projections. All energy invoices for 2011 and 2012 were entered into the spreadsheets by SHH, and since then have been tracked and kept up-to-date by the Borough's Finance Department. SHH has now set up the Borough in the Energy Star Portfolio Management Program (ESPM) for occupied buildings, so that those facilities can be benchmarked and prioritized for future energy-saving initiatives. Our process is to check in quarterly with Borough Finance to find out if they are doing ok or need some data enty assistance. This same information is the first step for our anticipated 2014 Energy Audits for Municipal Buildings. Attached at this time are the 2011 and 2012 energy worksheets for all facilities with and without meters, as well as the 2011 water usage worksheet. Since there appears to be a glitch in the ESPM software program, the requested reports will be generated separately and our Sustainable Jersey documentation will be updated when the glitch is resolved. The Borough Finance Department has the remaining 2013 energy information and SHH will help fill in any gaps if necessary. The reports and related benchmarking will be used to set realistic energy-reduction goals for the municipality as well as serve as an example to residents who will be encouraged to follow a similar process to reduce their energy usage and costs.

  • Food Production

    Community Gardens

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    * The Haddon Heights Community Garden was created by Resolution 2009:147 on July 21, 2009 and was established on property owned and maintained by the Borough. The property is slightly less than 6,000 square feet, with its longest exposure facing a street that has a moderate amount of foot traffic. * The site, located at 13 Glover Avenue, was chosen from an inventory of all vacant properties owned by the Borough created from the Tax Exempt Property List. * The property was divided into 30 10’ x 10’ plots to be leased for the growing season to Haddon Heights residents for $25. Plot rental fees collected by the Borough are now dedicated for the Community Garden, with the majority of the funding used to cover NJ American Water fees. Gardeners are required to sign a document releasing the Borough of any liability and agreeing to comply with rules regarding activities at the garden. * The Borough has provided compost on an on-going basis and finally installed a water line in June of 2013. (Water for the garden was previously available from barrels filled by the Fire Department). Garden debris is picked up by the Department of Public Works and information on the garden is included in the Borough’s newsletter. Applications are now processed by the Borough Clerk. Additionally, the property was recently surveyed by the Borough Engineer. * The Rotary Club funded the creation of a native plant border and the Drug Commission donated funds to purchase a shed to be installed by next spring. * Excess produce collected twice a month is distributed to residents in need through Haddon Heights Good Neighbors. * 2014 saw the addition of school gardens at each of our three elementary schools. The Haddon Heights Community Garden and Elementary School Gardens have become an integral part of our community.

  • Health & Wellness

    Anti-Idling Education & Enforcement Program

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    As part of the Haddon Heights anti-idling public awareness plan, the following activities are included: Focus on high non-compliance areas first: • Schools (public and private) • School bus companies that service Haddon Heights schools have pledged compliance • Vendors for deliveries to the schools, and municipal facilities • Business areas - Station Ave, White Horse Pike, Kings Hwy, and Black Horse Pike Compliance awareness activities will include: • Information about the rationale and requirements of the law - Sundays on Station handouts of Cross County Connections palm card by Sustainable Haddon Heights, as well as signage to be ordered and erected in high impact areas. • Information sharing will be a joint effort by the Haddon Heights Board of Education, the administrators, the PTG, local businesses, and local media outlets • Police will encourage voluntary compliance, especially in idling “hotspots.” • Schools and law enforcement will initially issue warnings to violators of the law Enforcement and legal action to compel compliance for violating the law may include: • Complaint-based enforcement • Proactive blitzes of schools connected to idling control campaigns • Ongoing enforcement previously has not been a police priority, since they currently idle their vehicles most of the time. Monitoring and periodic evaluations of education and enforcement activities, and their impact on the “anti-idling” campaign will be conducted periodically to determine if the plan is effective...or not. Sustainable Haddon Heights is ordering and will provide the signs at no cost to those private businesses and public entities identified as high priority locations. We have been told that the process is a bit more challenging on Borough properties, as No-Idling Zones need to be clearly established by Ordinance. We also recently completed a survey requested by NJDEP on our local anti-idling plans, so there will probably be an overview of survey results and recommended actions sometime in the near future.

  • Innovation & Demonstration Projects

    Raingardens

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    * The Haddon Heights Rain Garden is located in front of the Borough’s Community Center and adds visual appeal while providing an opportunity to educate the public on the value of rain gardens and the need to protect our water supply. It captures approximately a quarter of the rainwater runoff from the Community Center roof. * Since many activities are held in the building and the nearby recreational area generates foot traffic in the area, the rain garden has high visibility. The elementary school located across the street can use the site for educational purposes. * An educational sign, measuring 24” x 30”, was erected adjacent to the rain garden. With full-color graphics and accompanying text, the sign explains how rain gardens capture rainwater runoff, filters it, and recharges the groundwater. A brochure on rain gardens is planned and a link to the excellent how-to manual from Rutgers is available on the Sustainable Haddon Heights website. * Borough Council was very involved in the garden and sign design. The Department of Public Works (DPW) tilled the area prior to the work day. Volunteers, under the direction of the Environmental and Resource Management Agent for Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Burlington and Camden Counties as well as the Rutgers Master Gardener Association of Camden County, graded and planted the garden. On-going maintenance is minimal, with volunteers doing the occasional weeding. The DPW adds mulch when they maintain the other beds at the Community Center. * The project was funded by a grant from the New Jersey American Water Company.

  • Land Use & Transportation

    Complete Streets Program

    20 Points

    Program Summary:

    Our Environmental Commission has two traffic engineers as members, so they lean towards the public safety for pedestrians and bikers as a focus area. We have met with our new DPW Superintendent regarding crosswalk striping and how to coordinate with Camden County as well as NJDOT. Photos of all crosswalk areas to be addressed have been provided to DPW. The other areas we will be addressing will be the use of "Hawk" flashing beacons at two high-traffic areas that have been discussed for about five years, but have never made it out of the box. Our objective is to consistently raise the level of awareness of these two area, until they make it to the work schedule. Future focus will include ADA compliance with sidewalk throughway clearance and line of sight issues in our business districts where umbrellas, street furniture and trash/recycling containers block the driver's and pedestrian's vision of one another. Next year the Master Plan will be revisited, so Complete Streets will be a major focus item to be addressed moving forward.

    Sustainable Land Use Pledge

    10 Points Bronze Priority Silver Priority

    Program Summary:

    Attempts to complete the documentation for this action prior to the final November submission date will continue. Council members approved Resolution 2013:189 on November 6 and it should be published in the next bi-monthly Heights Report for community residents to review. Since Council members are all Department Heads, a separate memo from the Borough Clerk to Department Heads does not appear to be necessary. It is anticipated that a new Resolution for this Action can be completed by August 31.

  • Natural Resources

    Environmental Commission

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    *The Haddon Heights Environmental Commission was re-established via Resolution 2012:66 on March 6, 2012. The remainder of 2012 was spent getting organized and gaining training and direction from ANJEC. We will not submit our first Annual Report of any substance until November of 2013. *Meetings are held monthly on the third Wednesday, open to the public and posted on the Borough’s official public calendar, with the exception of some summer months when a quorum is not possible. Our meeting dates are also posted on the Community Calendar. *The documentation for this action is still being gathered, with the anticipation that it will be completely documented by August 31.

  • Natural Resource Protection Ordinances

    Tree Protection Ordinance

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    The Haddon Heights Shade Tree Commission was established in 1975 and in that same year, our Tree Protection Ordinance (Chapter 432) was made a part of Borough Code. Our Shade Tree Commission is composed entirely of volunteers and the budgetary support from Council has been consistent, but minimal, over the years. As our street trees age and become more vulnerable to tree diseases and inclement weather, a more realistic tree budget recommendation will be forthcoming for Council to consider moving forward.

  • Sustainability & Climate Planning

    Community Visioning

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    *The objectives of our community visioning workshop were to: 1) Determine what residents value the most and want to preserve; 2) Identify what programs are valued and getting better; and 3) Identify what programs need to be improved or developed in the future. *Our attendees were selected from a variety of backgrounds and community connections, including the following community categories: Business, Civic Groups, Community Garden, Education, Faith-Based Organizations, Government, Municipal, Senior Citizens, Youth, Sustainable Organizations, and Unaffiliated Residents. The participants’ makeup by gender was 48% Male and 58% Female, with the following Age categories - Under 25: 7%; 25-34: 7%; 35-44: 21%; 45-54: 21%; and Over 55: 44%. *Facilitators were sourced from Sustainable Cherry Hill and Sustainable Camden County, and invited guests representing Environmental Commissions, Green Teams and Civic Groups came from Audubon, Brooklawn, Haddonfield, Pennsauken, Stratford and Camden County. *Included with our final report is a visual storyboard of the process that was used and a separate compilation of the dot voting value responses of the participants. *Of 438 total value responses, 32% (139) landed in the A. Preserve category, with the top three Preserve value votes being #1 Trees - 24%; #2 Walkability - 18%; and #3 Community - 9%. * 40% (177) of all responses landed in the B. Transformation category. The top three Transformation value votes were #1 Energy - 23%; #2, Recycling-Reusing - 18%; and #3 Communications - 11%. * 28% ((122) of all responses landed in the C. Improve or Develop future projects category. The top three Improve-Develop value votes were a tie for #1 Recycling-Reusing, and #2 Biking -16% each, and #3 Conrail Property- 12%. We endorse a regional approach to learning more about sustainable practices combined with individual actions.

  • Recycling

    Non-Mandated Materials Recycling

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    Documentation from the Recycling Depot action have been transferred to this action. Recently the program has been adjusted so that the Borough is a drop-off point throughout the week for residents, and then delivers the electronic recycled materials to the Camden County facility. The volume of e-cycled materials is now included in the overage recycling tonnage report. The current reports are a bit behind and are being forwarded from DPW as soon as possible. Additionally, a request has been made to adjust how the recycling tonnage grant funds are utilized, allowing for resident recycling subsidies for backyard composters, inside worm composters and rain barrels. The net impact of this program is that residents no longer place their defective TVs at curbside to sit for weeks at a time.

    Recycling Education & Enforcement

    5 Points

    Program Summary:

    This action falls into the "No Ordinance, but Recycles" category 2. Recycling education occurs at Sundays on Station every Sunday from May through October at the Sustainable Haddon Heights tables. We provide a limited number of the attached recycling guide and provide links to the document on our website. Not all current tonnage reports have been forwarded by the new Superintendent of Public Works, previous reports from 2000-2010 are attached. Additionally, a request has been made to utilize a small percentage of the recycling tonnage grant funds to subsidize resident purchases of backyard composters, inside worm composters and rain barrels, instead of using all of the funds to purchase recycling containers and repair recycling vehicles. A sample of the request for Borough Council to consider is also attached.

  • Waste Reduction

    Reusable Bag Education Program

    5 Points

    Program Summary:

    Sustainable Haddon Heights promotes reusable bags at our Sundays on Station tables. Patrons of the adjacent Farmers Market are encouraged to take a tote if they don't have one and bring it back at a later date if they would like. We also offer customized mesh produce bags slightly below our cost to prime the process of getting people to change their habit of not carrying a reusable bag with them at all times. Additionally, folks who stop and talk with us about the subject of the day are encouraged to enter our weekly drawing to win one of the produce bags as well as our monthly drawing for a gift certificate to a local merchant. We also utilize a Bag Monster costume at special events and Sundays on Station. Our focus will be on educating residents on the impact of plastic bags on our environment and the advantages of reusable bags. We also will be loaning our Plastic Bag Monster costume to other local Green Teams that want to focus on alternatives to plastic bags.