This Agreement dated this 26 day of April, 1999, by and between the Board of Education of the Township of Waterford in the County of Camden with offices at 1106 Old White Horse Pike, Waterford, New Jersey, 08089 ("Waterford") and the Board of Education of the Town of Hammonton in the County of Atlantic with office at North Liberty Street, Hammonton, New Jersey 08037 ("Hammonton")
WHEREAS, Waterford is presently a constituent district of Lower Camden County Regional High School District No. 1; and
WHEREAS, as a result of the May 12, 1998 referendum held in the seven constituent districts of the Lower Camden County Regional high School District No. 1, the Lower Camden County Regional High School District No. 1 is to be dissolved at an effective date to be determined by the Commissioner of Education of the State of New Jersey; and
WHEREAS, Waterford desires to send its pupils, grades 7 through 12, to Hammonton and to designate Hammonton as the school for attendance of Waterford pupils pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 18A:38-11 et seq. and in accordance with the terms set forth herein; and
WHEREAS, Hammonton is willing to accept such Waterford pupils at its schools and to furnish educational services to Waterford pupils in grades 7 through 12 pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18:38-8 et seq. and in accordance with the terms set forth herein; and
WHEREAS, the parties desire to enter into this Agreement so as to create a "sending/receiving" relationship pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 18A:38-11 et. seq.; and
WHEREAS, both Hammonton and Waterford recognize that in order to provide adequate facilities for Hammonton and Waterford pupils, Hammonton will have to renovate, expand and upgrade the existing school facilities in Hammonton and construct a new facility and incur a debt of approximately $34 million; and
WHEREAS, both Hammonton and Waterford recognize that Hammonton will need to incur debt including sufficient debt to renovate, expand and upgrade existing school facilities in Hammonton and construct a new facility and incur a debt of approximately $34 million; and
WHEREAS, both Hammonton and Waterford recognize that Hammonton will need the tuition payments from Waterford for its pupils to ensure Hammonton's ability to raise sufficient revenue to repay the debt that Hammonton will incur; and
WHEREAS, both Hammonton and Waterford recognize that pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:38-20 a sending/receiving agreement which contemplates the provision of additional facilities by the receiving district may be for a term not exceeding ten (10) years but both parties recognize the need to extend such period to thirty (30) years for payment of the debt Hammonton will incur; and
WHEREAS, both Hammonton and Waterford recognize that Hammonton will need approximately thirty (30) years to pay the debt Hammonton will incur as a result of entering into this sending/receiving relationship with Waterford; and
WHEREAS, both Hammonton and Waterford recognize that Hammonton will face severe and substantial financial hardship if Waterford seeks to terminate the sending/receiving relationship before Hammonton does in fact repay they debt Hammonton will incur as a result of entering into this sending/receiving relationship with Waterford; and
WHEREAS, both Hammonton and Waterford seek to avoid the severe and substantial financial hardship Hammonton will face if the sending/receiving relationship is terminated before Hammonton does in fact repay the debt Hammonton will incur as a result of entering into this sending/receiving relationship with Waterford;
Now therefore, in consideration of the mutual covenants contained in this Agreement, the parties hereto agree as follows:
1. Designation. Waterford, as the sending district hereby designates Hammonton as the receiving district for all of Waterford's pupils in grades 7 through 12, in accordance with the provisions of N.J.S.A. 18A:38-11 et. seq. and the terms of this Agreement. Hammonton hereby accepts such designation.
2. Term. The Term of this Agreement shall be thirty (30) years commencing with the first year that Waterford sends students to Hammonton under the terms of this Agreement (hereinafter referred to as the Initial School Year); provided, however, that if applicable law requires that such term be no more than ten (10) years, then, at a minimum the term shall be ten years with each party having the unilateral right to extend the period for two extension periods of ten (10) years each.
3. Provision of Educational Program. For the entire term of this Agreement or any extension thereof, Hammonton shall provide an educational program for Waterford pupils in grads 7 through 12, in accordance with the requirements of N.J.S.A. 18A:38-11 et. seq. and in accordance with the terms set forth herein and the mandates of N.J.S.A. 18A-33-1 et. seq. together with other applicable Rules and Regulations of the New Jersey State Board of Education. Waterford students attending Hammonton
schools shall receive equal educational opportunities and shall be accorded all the rights, privileges and status enjoyed by the residents of Hammonton attending the grades 7 through 12.
4. Tuition. Waterford shall pay tuition to Hammonton for all Waterford students attending Hammonton schools in accor-dance with the provisions of N.J.S.A. 18:38-19 and N.J.A.C. 6:20-3.1 et. seq., and pursuant to the terms of this Agreement.
5. Other costs
5.1 Transportation: Waterford shall be responsible for all costs of transporting its students to and from the Hammonton Schools.
6. Determination of Number of Waterford Pupils to Which Tuition Rate Shall Apply. Waterford shall notify Hammonton, in writing, of the estimated average daily enrollment of pupils expected to be sent during the ensuing school year no later than December 10th, of the preceding school year. Waterford shall submit to Hammonton a copy of its calculations by the aforesaid date. The number of tuition pupils determined for any school year during the term of this Agreement is an estimate. The actual number will be determined at a later date, and if different than the estimated number, a subsequent adjustment shall be made so that tuition is ultimately paid by Waterford for the actual number of Waterford pupils attending Hammonton schools during a given year.
7. Special Education/Child Study Team.
7.1 Hammonton, through its Child Study Team and special services department, shall provide all services necessary to identify, evaluate, classify and recommend educational placements for pupils sent by Waterford to Hammonton pursuant to this agreement. The Child Study Teams of both Hammonton and Waterford will meet to discuss the educational placement of the rising seventh-grade special education pupils. Hammonton shall be responsible for determining special education plans in accordance with N.J.A.C. 6A:14 et. seq.
7.2 Waterford will directly bear the full cost for any special education students of Waterford. These costs shall include, but not be limited to, all placement, tuition, transportation and related costs incurred. The tuition paid by Waterford to Hammonton pursuant to the provisions of N.J.A.C. 6:20-3.1 et. seq. shall cover the cost of Child Study Team services rendered by Hammonton by direct salaried employees.
8. Enrollment Projections. Both Hammonton and Waterford agree that during the term of this Agreement and
any extensions thereof, a Committee of the Board, composed of Board members and school officials, shall be formed. This Committee shall meet annually no later than March 31 of each year to study and project student population trends in the respective districts and to report on the respective Boards on the impact such student population growth/decline will have upon the capacity of the Hammonton schools. If the student population exceeds or is projected to exceed ten percent of the design capacity of the Hammonton schools for a three year consecutive period, then the parties agree to meet to attempt to develop a mutually acceptable plan to address such increase.
9. Dispute Resolution. Both Hammonton and Waterford agree that in the event of any dispute regarding the interpretation of this Agreement, they shall meet, through representatives, with a view toward amicably adjusting any differences in a manner which is equitable and in accordance with the stated intent and purpose of this Agreement. In the event of a failure by the Boards to amicably resolve such dispute, it is stipulated that the Commissioner of Education shall have jurisdiction to formally resolve such disputes in accordance with the provisions of N.J.S.A. 18A:6-9.
10. Policy and Procedural Provisions. The parties hereby agree to abide by the following policies and procedural provisions governing the sending/receiving relationship:
10.1 Hammonton shall take concerns of the Waterford pupils and of Waterford into account in making decisions and taking actions affecting Hammonton pupils and Hammonton.
10.2 Waterford shall designate a member who will have a seat on the Hammonton Board of Education. This member shall receive all Board packets in advance of meetings, except for confidential items not available to said person as a matter of State or Federal law or regulation, and shall be able to participate fully and vote in any and all matters and decisions. This member shall also have to the right to vote on those matters which said member shall be entitled to vote upon under N.J.S.A.. 18A:38-8.1, subject to review by the Commissioner of Education, the State Board of Education, and the courts of the State of New Jersey.
10.3 The Superintendents of Hammonton and Waterford, or their authorized designees, shall meet at the request of either Superintendent to develop common educational goals three months prior to the commencement of the Initial School Year, and throughout the term of this Agreement. Within their discretion, the Superintendents may also arrange for the Curriculum Committee or any other staff to meet on an as need basis.
11. Public Meetings. Either Board of Education may request joint meetings of the Waterford and Hammonton Boards of Education at reasonable times and places, for any purpose relating to the relationship set forth herein. Hammonton shall hold a joint public meeting with Waterford at Waterford's written request in Waterford Township within forty-five (45) days of receipt of the New Jersey School Report Card for Hammonton schools.
12. Representations and Warranties of Waterford. In order to induce hammonton to enter into this Agreement, Waterford represents and warrants to Hammonton as follows:
12.1 That Waterford will not seek to terminate this sending/receiving relationship until Hammonton pays off the debt it will incur to build the facilities necessary for this sending/receiving relationship.
12.2 That Waterford agrees that termination of the sending/receiving relationship with Hammonton before Hammonton does in fact repay the debt Hammonton will incur will in fact result in severe and substantial financial hardship to Hammonton.
13. Representation and Warranties of Hammonton. In order to induce Waterford to enter into this Agreement, Hammonton represents and warrants to Waterford as follows:
13.1 That no distinction of treatment of pupils will be based on the place of residence of the pupils.
13.2 That Hammonton will use its best efforts to provide the pupils of Waterford with a thorough and efficient education.
13.3 That Hammonton will not enter into a sending/receiving relationship for the regular education program of another district's pupils with which Hammonton does not already have a sending/receiving relationship without consulting with Waterford. In the event any such proposed sending/receiving relationship would result in a student population exceeding or projected to exceed ten percent of the designed capacity of the Hammonton schools for a three year period, Hammonton shall seek prior written consent of Waterford, which consent shall not be unreasonably withheld or delayed. The parties acknowledge that Hammonton currently has an existing sending/receiving relationship for the regular education program with the Board of Education of Folsom and Hammonton shall be entitled to modify, including without limitation expand, such program without consulting Waterford.
14. Conditions Precedent. This Agreement is expressly conditioned upon the following items, the nonoccurance of which will render this Agreement null and void:
14.1 The dissolution of Lower Camden County Regional School District No. 1.
14.2 The approval by voter referendum in Hammonton of the necessary financing for and construction of a new high school facility and the planned renovation of other Hammonton schools. It is the intention of Hammonton to seek such approval by an initial voter referendum scheduled for June 1999 and if such referendum does not pass, to seek a second referendum thereafter.
14.3 Hammonton obtaining all necessary financing and approvals for the construction of a new high school facility and the planned renovation of other Hammonton schools.
14.4 The approval of the Commissioner of Education and/or the State Board of Education of the terms and conditions of this Agreement.
14.5 The rendering of a judgement by the Commissioner of Education and/or the State Board of Education that Hammonton and Waterford have the right to enter into this Agreement.
14.6 The rendering of a judgement by the Commissioner of Education and/or the State Board of Education that Hammonton will have no obligation pursuant to N.J.S.A.. 18A:13-64, independently or derivatively through Waterford, or otherwise, to employ, pay or in any manner position or post any employee of the Lower Camden County Regional School District No. 1 because of the dissolution of the Lower Camden County Regional School District No. 1 or because of the formation of this sending/receiving relationship between Hammonton and Waterford.
15. Term Start Date
15.1 It is the parties intention that the Term shall begin no sooner than when all construction described herein is completed and that final certificate of occupancies for the new high school and renovated current high school have been issued. The parties contemplate that such events will occur no sooner than September 7, 2002.
15.2 If Waterford opposes any relocation of its students by the Lower Camden County Regional School District No. 1 or any other party prior to September 2002, and is then unsuccessful in its opposition, and Waterford is ordered to send their students to any facility other than Edgewood Junior or Edgewood High School, then in such case, Waterford may request that Hammonton meet with Waterford to attempt to develop a mutually acceptable plan to address such relocation which plan shall be at no additional cost to Hammonton.
16. Declaratory Judgment. In connection with execution of this Agreement, Hammonton shall cause to be filed with the Commissioner of Education and/or the State Board of Education a petition for declaratory judgment seeking judgments as set forth in subparagraph 14.5 and 14.6. Such action shall be at Hammonton's expense; provided, however, that Waterford shall agree to cooperate in such action as reasonably requested by Hammonton and Waterford shall bear any costs of Waterford's cooperation.
17. Certification. Notwithstanding any provision contrary to this Agreement, Waterford shall have the right to seek to terminate the sending/receiving relationship in the event that Hammonton loses its educational certification under N.J. Stat. Ann. 18A:7A-1; and Hammonton shall have the right to seek to terminate the sending/receiving relationship in the event that Waterford loses its educational certification under N.J. Stat. Ann. 18A:7A-1.
18. Force Majeure. The obligation of Hammonton to provide educational services hereunder shall be subject to the availability of Hammonton's facilities and staff. If for any reason beyond the control of Hammonton such facilities or staff are not available to provide the educational services described here under for reasons such as, but not limited to, strikes, destruction of facilities by fire, flood or other natural occurances, Hammonton shall have the right to suspend such services here under to the extent that it suspends services to its own residents and Hammonton shall have no obligation to Waterford for damages, reimbursement for alternative programs or otherwise. Waterford shall not be required to make tuition payments during the period of time in which Hammonton suspended such educational services. In such circumstances, Hammonton shall exercise due diligence and effort to reinstate services as set forth herein as soon as reasonably possible.
19. Servability and Legality. The parties understand that this Agreement is governed by the laws of the State of New Jersey and the Rules and Regulations of the New Jersey Department of Education and the State Board of Education. If any provision of the Agreement is deemed unenforceable, illegal or inconsistent with then current statutes, rules or regulations, such statutes, rules or regulations shall govern. However, to the extent that enforceable provisions of this Agreement exist and are not inconsistent with such statutes, rules or regulations, they shall remain binding upon the parties.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the Board of Education of the Township of Waterford and the Board of Education of the Town of Hammonton have caused these presents to be signed by their respective Presidents, attested to by their respective Secretaries and their corporate seals to be affixed hereto, all on the day and year first above written.