JACKSON-Residents in Jackson are expressing frustrations and disappointment over the township council’s appointment of a local builder who performed home improvement work at the home of Council President Ken Bressi to the township’s zoning board.
In the 2017 township reorganization meeting, Councilman Ken Bressi recused himself from the vote to appoint Peter Kitay, 56, owner of County Line Construction to the town’s zoning board.
Bressi, at the time of the vote did not disclose his reason for abstaining, but after the appointment, news reports suggested Bressi had previously hired the contractor for home improvements at his Diamond Road home.
This raised a question of whether or not this construction work was performed before or after Bressi voted on several resolutions as a councilman pertaining to County Line Construction’s development of Cranberry Harvest Estates.
We have asked the township for more information which we are waiting for a response, but here’s what we know so far:
In 2010 Bressi voted yes to the township authorizing the release of a $208,454 performance guarantee for Cranberry Harvest Estates.
It is unknown what work County Line Construction performed for Bressi, who is the township’s council president and also a voting planning board member.
In 2011, as councilman, Bressi was the only councilman to vote no to release a $500 cash bond on a Butterfly Road property being developed by Kitay.
In 2014, Bressi abstained from a vote to release a $28,964 cash bond held by the township for the Cranberry Harvest Estates project being built by Kitay’s firm.
In November, the zoning board, for which Kitay now serves approved County Line’s bulk variance application to convert a 7 development near Jackson Liberty High School, Izak Court into 10 higher density lots, near the township’s border with Lakewood.
Several times over the past few years, the township council had voted on resolutions pertaining to County Line Construction. We have requested voting records of those matters from the township.
As recently as October of 2016, County Line Construction has been represented by Ray Shea of Levin, Shea and Pfeffer. Shea’s represents a large amount of applicants that go before the township planning board. We asked the township this morning if Kitay’s relationship with Shea would be a conflict of interest for future hearings regarding Shea’s clients, we are waiting for a reply.
Residents have been engaged in an online discussion on the Jackson,NJ Facebook page regarding this appointment.