September 13, 2005

One party rule serves the party first and foremost

All Union County taxpayers should be very weary of Cranford Democratic Chairwoman Carolyn Vollero’s claim that an all-Democrat Cranford Township Committee would have benefits. “I think we will get things done a lot quicker with less bickering” she said in a recent Star-Ledger article.

In county races for Freeholder in 1998, which was the last year there was mixed representation on the board, the Democrats campaigned with the same rhetoric, saying that given total control they would be able to get things done a lot quicker with a lot less bickering. Unfortunately, the Democrats kept every word of that campaign promise.

Since they’ve taken total control of the 9 member freeholder board they now pass resolutions with lightening speed, most times while not releasing information to the public until the night of the meeting. They not only don’t bicker about anything during meetings, they don’t discuss much business either and they don't answer the publics questions. The public portion of the meeting is for public comments only. They vote yes on resolutions in unison without any public debate, which leaves you to wonder where are they discussing things if not in public? And who are they discussing them with if not the public? Even one dissenting voice on the board – one outsider - would put a stop to all of that.

Also consider that in the same year that the Union County Freeholder Board went all one party rule their campaign ridiculed the remaining Republicans because they wouldn’t give a surplus of money back to the taxpayers. Since winning total control, the all-Democrat freeholder board has raised their portion of our property tax bills over 50% with not one sitting freeholder willing to ridicule the board for any of the causes of the tax hikes.

No matter what the party is, one party ruled government gives outside political powerbrokers too much sway over local issues; we need a balance at all levels of government. Only healthy public debate can lead to government of the people, by the people, for the people – all the people, not just the connected polical hacks and powerbrokers.