Tenafly was incorporated as a borough in January 1894 under an act of
the New Jersey Legislature. A municipality in New Jersey derives its
authority from the State Legislature under Title 40 of the Revised
Statutes, which mandates that municipalities enforce certain state
regulations in matters of finance, law enforcement, education, health
and welfare. However, state laws encourage "home rule" by permitting a
local government to enact ordinances suitable for its own needs if they
do not conflict with state or federal laws.
The Municipal Center, located at 100 Riveredge Road, houses the various local government
administrative offices, the Police and Fire Departments, the Volunteer
Ambulance Corps, the Public Library, Youth Center, McCandless Room,
Mayor's Office, Council Chambers/Municipal Court, and meeting and
conference rooms. The Department of Public Works is located at 107
Grove Street. The Tenafly Senior Center is located at 20 South Summit
Municipal offices are open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30
p.m., excluding holidays. Since it became a Borough, Tenafly has been
governed by a Mayor and Council who are chosen through partisan
elections held in November annually. The Mayor is the chief executive
officer and the six Council members handle legislative functions. A
full-time Administrator assists the Mayor and Council and coordinates
the operations of government departments.
The Reorganization Meeting of the governing body is held on the within the first week of January. At this meeting, the newly-elected Council members
take the oath of office, and a Council President, who serves as Acting
Mayor when the Mayor is absent, is elected by the Council. Appointments
for the coming year are announced by the Mayor and confirmed by the
Council when required by law.
The governing body focuses on two major areas of consideration at their meetings, whether a work session or a public meeting, in addition to other items that come to their attention. The first major area deals with financial matters affecting the operation of the Borough, specifically appropriating money and approving expenditures. The second major area deals with the laws of the Borough of Tenafly, called "ordinances". Potential ordinances are discussed at work sessions and then introduced at a regular meeting. It is the responsibility of the Borough Clerk to publish the ordinance in the designated official newspaper under "Public Notices". This alerts the public to the action being considered by the governing body. It includes the date, time and place of the public hearing at which the interested public can ask questions and offer comments on the particular ordinance. Following the public hearing and the adoption of any amendments to the ordinance, the governing body then votes to adopt the ordinance and it becomes law.
The Mayor and Council Meeting Schedule is adopted during the Reorganization Meeting. The public is encouraged to attend, and comments from the audience are
part of the agenda and are listed on the agenda under "Audience Remarks
for Agenda Items" and "Audience Remarks for Non-Agenda Items" during the Regular Meeting. Work
Sessions of the Committee of the Whole, consisting of all Council
members, the Mayor, Borough Administrator/Borough Clerk, Deputy Borough Clerk and Borough Attorney, are held prior to the Regular Meeting, as noted in the adopted schedule. Anyone wishing to have a matter considered by the Mayor and Council should send a letter addressed to them, in care of the Deputy Borough Clerk, to 100 Riveredge Road, Tenafly, NJ 07670 for placement on the following work session agenda. The Council reserves the right to close work sessions
and public meetings in accordance with state law to discuss specific Closed Session items.