Category Archives: advisory boards and commissions

Middletown Human Rights Commission Being Abolished by Attrition

In a response to my earlier post “Political Affiliations Over Participation Matter More When It Comes To Board Appointments“, Mrs. Carolyn Schwebel sent out a letter to numerous friends and supporters that concurs with much of what I posted. It seems that because Mrs. Schewebel has been an outspoken member of the Middletown Human Rights Commission, who has held the Township of Middletown accountable for its lack of attentiveness to the various issues concerning people with disabilities, the Human Rights Commission is dying a slow death and it seems that she will not be reappointed to the commission.
Here is what she wrote:

At the last Middletown Township committee meeting, a frequently outspoken resident commented that she had applied to be on the Library Board, the mayor told her that she had as much chance of being appointed as he had in getting her vote in the last election. His comment sounds like a quid pro quo to me, and reflects the political connection requirement for appointments to Middletown’s boards and commissions. A Library Board member has just been removed for presenting a minority view.

The Middletown Human Rights Commission (MHRC) had only six members of the required eleven seats. and unanimously asked the Township Committee to appoint new members in January 2012. No answer was received. Another member and I, whose terms ended in 2011, received no “thank you letter,” although the other members did, and no mention of being reappointed.

The resolutions for Middletown’s January 1, 2012 reorganization meeting show appointments to all boards and commissions except the Bayshore Village Senior Citizen Housing Corporation , which has no vacancies, and the Middletown Human Rights Commission. Neither I nor the other commissioner has been reappointed, although I have been the chair, with perfect attendance for many years.

It is of note that both MHRC members who were not reappointed have spoken out to advise the Township Committee. Both also have disabilities and use wheelchairs. Less than three years ago, Middletown settled a civil rights case of disability discrimination. An Americans with Disabilities Act accessibility suit has existed since 2004, with consent orders in 2006 and 2007 being unfulfilled by Middletown.

A Chinese aphorism recently in the New York Times stated that, “You cannot wrap a fire with paper: the truth will come out.”

It’s too bad that this type of stuff goes on, it just adds credence to what many already know which is, if you’re not one of the chosen elite in Middletown you need not apply.

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Filed under advisory boards and commissions, Carolyn Schwebel, Middletown Human Rights Commission, Middletown NJ

With 19 Other Committees and Advisory Boards in Middletown, Nelson says "NO" To The Establishment of Finance Committee

If Middletown’s form of government was intended to get away from committees and advisory boards, as Township Attorney #2 Brian Nelson suggests in the audio clip from the June 1st Township Workshop meeting, then why do we currently have 19 committees and advisory boards sanctioned by township?

Why is it inadvisable to form a Finance Committee to suggest budget savings to the members of the governing committee, but totally fine to have advisory boards look over and make suggestions to the committee about such things as community affairs, strategic planning or parks and recreation? Shouldn’t the Township Committee members be just as involved and hands on in these areas as they want everyone to believe they are with the township’s finances?


Again, the need for a Finance committee is evident in light of this years budget fiasco, a budget that has a shortfall of $2.5 million and a proposed tax increase of 9.2% (could be as high as 10%), which would be the highest in the State.

Middletown has had to ask the State for assistance by requesting permission to wave the 4% cap on budgets, which is very unlikely to happen given that Atlantic Highlands and others requester have been turned down.

Below are 19 Commissions and Advisory Boards that are currently recognized by the Middletown Township Committee:

Clean Communities Advisory Committee
Community Affairs Council
Environmental Commission
Municipal Alliance for the Prevention of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse
Human Rights Commission
Landmarks Commission
Local Assistance Board
Lincroft Senior Citizen Housing Corporation
Open Space Preservation Committee
Parks and Recreation Master Plan Steering Committee
Planning Board
Recreation Advisory Board
Safety Council
Sewerage Authority
Strategic Planning Committee
Zoning Board of Adjustment


Filed under advisory boards and commissions, Brian Nelson, Finance Committee, Middletown

Middletown GOP: What Do They Have To Hide?

An anonymous poster left the following comment to Friday’s post Green Team – Finance Team, Can Someone Explain the Difference? I find it interesting that others are now starting to understand that business as usual can not continue in Middletown as it has for the past 20 years:

“This township desperately needs not only a Finance Committee but also a forensic audit done by an accredited firm with no affiliation with the politicians in this township.

It is clearly evident the republican majority in Middletown is trying to hide a great deal from it’s citizens. This new attorney seems to be complicit in this endeavor.

It’s the residents and their taxes that pay the bills.They are entitled to an honest,clear picture of finances in Middletown.The Republican majority clearly stonewalls any attempt at full disclosure!

Fiscal irresponsibility is the mantra of this bunch of ethically challanged individuals. WHAT DO THEY HAVE TO HIDE. The stench now reaks throughout the township…… “

The entrenchment of the Middletown Republicans has gone on long enough, nepotism and cronyism has lead to the current financial mess the township finds itself in, more so than any unfunded mandates that they like to blame on Trenton.
Because of their continued stonewalling of financial matters, the ’09 budget is short on revenues by $2.5 million, will contain a 9.2% (or higher) tax increase and will be 7 months late.
All of this will force the township to send out estimated tax bills to Middletown residents which will lead to utter confusion, long lines and needless anger at the tax offices.
There are curently 19 advisory boards and commissions recognized by the township governing body, all with various volunteers and elected officials as members. Why a Finance Committee would be any different from any one of the other boards or commissions is beyond me.
Unless of course the Middletown GOP HAS SOMETHING TO HIDE !


Filed under advisory boards and commissions, Budget Shortfall, Finance Committee, Middletown GOP, municipal tax rates