BONUS FOR CHIEF, TRASH JOBBED OUT

darryl-breckenridge-010108By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Fair Haven Police Chief Darryl Breckenridge got his annual attaboy from the borough council last night in the form of a $3,000 bonus.

This is not unusual in Fair Haven. Employees do well, they get compensated, Mayor Mike Halfacre said.

And even though Breckenridge is part of the police department, he is not a member of a union, making him eligible for a performance-based bonus, like all other non-union workers, Halfacre said.

Breckenridge, who makes somewhere in the area of $114,000 a year, Halfacre estimated, has a provision built into his contract that if he meets certain goals, the council can, after his end-of-year review, give him a bonus.

Fair Haven usually gives bonuses to employees in the summer, Halfacre said. Payouts range from $500 to $1,000 for all other municipal employees.

Resident Ruth Blaser, who typically scrutinizes most financial moves the council makes, strongly objected to the financial reward Monday night.

“For a town our size, he makes a considerably good salary as is,” she said. “I think we should forgo this bonus.”

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In other Fair Haven news:

The council approved its contract to privatize trash collection.

M&S Waste Services, of Middletown, will take over garbage pickup on May 2.

The three-year, $522,755 contract is expected to save the borough about $110,000 this year, and close to $200,000 in each of the next two years, Council President Jon Peters said.

The collection schedule will stay intact, with minor tweaks likely for the business district and the possibility of more frequent recycling pickup if the new “single stream” service, in which cardboard, glass, paper and other recyclables may be combined into one can, proves to be popular.

Residents and businesses will be notified of the new service and any changes in the future, Halfacre said.

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Work continues along River Road’s streetscape project.

Some new light fixtures have been installed along the borough’s main road, and more will be put in over the next couple weeks.

Beginning March 24, new benches, trash receptacles and planters will be installed, Administrator Theresa Casagrande said. The brick wall in front of Acme is also slated for completion soon, she said.