Category Archives: letter to the editor

Letter: Save Our Swim Club

Dear Middletown Mike,

I am writing to you to regarding the Middletown Swim Club. As we all know the township has stated that they do not want to operate the swim club this year. We ( club members) went to the town meeting on Jan 17th to let the township know we were are not happy with their decision.

During the meeting many numbers were thrown about regarding ADA regulations that need to be put into place and also capital improvements that needed to be made. These numbers ranged up to a million dollars with no specifics to clarify to the members . We have done some investigating with the town and discovered a few things that we think people should know.
The swim club has never been a burden to taxpayers . The swim club is set up as a utility and as such must be self sustaining. Only membership money has been used to run the club.

It has been rumored that they may only open 1 pool this year. The cost to open one pool and 4 pools is the same. Also – if the pumps are not run in the other pools they will become damaged and that will cost money to repair.

Most importantly:

The taxpayers of Middletown will have to take on the burden of the bonds that are owed on the swim club. This amount is $225,000.00 if the club is not opened this year. The membership dues are what cover this cost. These bonds will continue for the next 10 years for a total cost to the taxpayer of $1,300,000.

A member committee has been established and will be presenting its plan to the Township for the continued operation of the swim club very soon.

We who belong love our club. We would like all to join and see what we see. No one should have to go to another town and use their pool when we have a perfectly good one in our own town. Support Middletown, keep the money here. Please join the fight to save the pool club.

Regards,

Save Our Swim Club Committee

Kerri Brennan
Middletown

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Filed under bond debt, letter to the editor, Middletown Swim and Tennis Club, Middletown Township Committee, taxpayers

Senator Buono Letter to the Editor – Cervical Cancer Month

There were no flashing lights or red flags that let 4,000 women across this country know that cervical cancer was coming.

Most of these women – mothers, sisters, daughters, and aunts – felt no pain and lived normally unaware of the disease that in a matter of time would take their lives.

Most of these women – the majority of whom were under the age of 65 – are survived by friends and family, neighbors and co-workers who loved them and miss their presence daily.

All of these women – casualties of an illness that is 100 percent preventable – should still be here today.

Although the ubiquitous pink ribbons we all see each October may be more prevalent than the teal and white emblems symbolizing cervical cancer awareness in January, we cannot ignore the fact that each year 12,000 women in the United States receive a life-changing diagnosis that they have the disease.

More than ever before, we have the resources to ensure that cervical cancer becomes a thing of the past. In addition to regular Pap smears that can lead to early detection and treatment of the disease, young women under the age of 26 may receive a vaccine against the human papillomavirus, or HPV, the most common cause of cervical cancer. Federal health care reform provisions effective this August will make these services more affordable and thus more accessible. It is critically important – and potentially life-saving – that every young woman meets with her doctor to discuss these preventative measures.

In the state of New Jersey, this is an important time to think about just how crucial funding for women’s health centers really is. When Governor Christie cut $7.5 million of this support from the budget, he denied many women access to the examinations and care that help prevent and treat diseases that most affect them, including cervical cancer. As a husband and the father of two beautiful young daughters, one would expect that the governor would acknowledge the gravity of this funding.

Just last year, a young woman from Marlboro, through strength and faith, was able to overcome cervical cancer. But her road to being cancer-free was not an easy one. After starting her first full-time job, she went to the doctor for the first time in three years, a practice that had become irregular due to her lack of health insurance after graduating from college. Shortly after that visit, she was diagnosed with cervical cancer. She did not feel sick. She did not look sick. But it took a decade of chemotherapy, radiation, and a hysterectomy – which left her infertile – for her to make a full recovery.

She is just 35.

This is not a matter of our principles and personal beliefs; it’s about memorializing the 4,000 women who died last year and honoring the young woman from Marlboro and other survivors by making sure that we learn, act, and move forward.

Sincerely,

Senator Barbara Buono
18th Legislative District

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Filed under cervical cancer, Gov. Chris Christie, HPV virus, letter to the editor, Marlboro NJ, Pap smears, Senator Barbara Buono, women's health issues

Letter: No Trustee Appointments

The following letter was received from Mr. Bob Latsch

A recent article in the Asbury Park Press stated that two appointees will be added to the Middletown Township Public Library’s Board of Trustees. Once before the Township Committee absconded with library funds to fill a hole in the township’s budget deficit. The voters as usual had nothing to say about this! Why?

Now with two trustee appointments along with the first current appointment, lets the mayor have voting control, control enough to take taxpayer funds as needed. These two appointees will not for the betterment of the Library, no they are there to control for Committee and Mayor not the Library or cardholders.
Trustees such as the last appointee are there at the behest of the mayor to do his bidding, appointments should not be. The right way is to have the library select the trustees then the public vote to accept or not.
The Middletown Public Library is just that, public for all. It is not a bank or cookie jar for the mayor to take from for holes in his budget. The appointed cronies have to go, let the voting public decide on trusteeship.
Bob Latsch
Belford, NJ

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Filed under Belford NJ, Board of Trustees, letter to the editor, Middletown Library, trustee appointments

Secret Public Hearing at Middletown Sewerage Authority

The following letter appears online at the Atlantic Highlands Herald:

At its 12/7/2011 Board meeting, The Middletown Sewerage Authority (TOMSA) held a public hearing on its 2012 budget, but didn’t bother to tell the public.

I attended that meeting and was caught by surprise when, at the start of the meeting, TOMSA Executive Director Pat Parkinson asked awkwardly if there were any public comments on the budget. He never bothered to announce that it was a public hearing. Such an announcement is protocol at hearings and typically includes mention of when notice was provided to the public in line with statutory requirement.

Not realizing it was a hearing and not prepared for it, I said nothing, and the Board quickly moved to adopt the budget by unanimous vote while I was still scratching my head.

After the meeting, I did an online search of public notices and found none about the budget hearing. Because the public wasn’t notified of the hearing, TOMSA’s 2012 budget is subject to legal challenge. It seems appropriate, then, that a new hearing be scheduled. The public deserves a real opportunity, and has a legal right, to review the numbers and ask questions.

Linda Baum
Middletown, NJ

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Filed under Atlantic Highlands Herald, letter to the editor, Patrick Parkinson, public hearing, TOMSA

Purpose Of Proposed Ordinance To Expand Middletown’s Library Board Is Questioned

Dear Mike,

As an advocate of our excellent Middletown Township library system, I am very concerned about the ordinance being presented at Monday’s (12/19/11) Township Committee Meeting regarding the addition of two Library Board members. This ordinance allows for the current seven member Board to be expanded to nine members as appointed by the mayor and his governing body. One Board member is the school Superintendant’s alternate pick (and therefore not chosen by the Township Committee).
Some may see this ordinance as a well intended gesture to “increase public participation” in the Library Board decision making process. However, based on the events of this past February, I am skeptical that the addition of two members is anything but a political move to put people in place to advance the agenda of the Township Committee.
Can we trust that the intention of this ordinance is not to divert money to the MTC budget when Committeeman Settembrino, in his role as Library Board member, pushed to have $500,000 transferred from the Library budget to the MTC budget, thereby depleting the library reserves? Mr. Settembrino acted in accordance with his role as a Committeeman to advocate for the taxpayer and provide property tax relief to our residents by plugging a budget hole with this money transfer. However, his action neglects his Library Board Trustee duty to be an advocate for a robust library system.
How can this new, larger Board remain independent when its members may be beholden to the desires of their appointees? The interests of the Township Committee may permeate this independent Board and take precedence over the best interests of the library and the public whom the Board is meant to serve.
The Library Board members must first and foremost be advocates of the library, and their fiduciary responsibility would require them to protect the library budget so that it meets the needs of the library and its patrons. Can we trust that Mr. Fiore will require his appointees to serve our needs, and not his own?
Thank you for all that you do to keep residents informed of the actions of their local government.
Warm Regards,

Melanie Elmiger

Note:
For more on this topic read “The $500,000 Raid On The Middletown Library Won’t Be The Last” and the comments that accompany the post along with APP: Middletown requests library hand over surplus of over $542G and Meeting Minutes From Library Board’s January 19th Meeting Contradicts What Was Said By Township Committee Members At Last Wednesday Night’s Meeting. You can also access the archives of this blog for various updates and opinions on this topic.

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Filed under Kevin Settembrino, letter to the editor, Middletown Library, Middletown Township Committee, public hearing, resolutions and ordinances, surplus funds, Tony Fiore

An Open Letter to Middletown Residents About Independent Candidate Richard Morrill

The following letter was forwarded to me by Independent Candidate For Middletown Township Committee Richard Morrill, who asked if I would post it. The letter was written by a Mr. Dwight Kehoe who expresses his support for Richard Morrill’s candidacy:

A Friend of Middletown
November 7, 2011
By Dwight Kehoe

This Tuesday Middletown will once again go to the polls and either elect or re-elect politicians. Some good and some…. not so much.

As everyone that has paid attention to Middletown township politics over the last 3 decades knows, one party has pretty much had control. The results have not been stellar. Taxes have gone up, waste continues as programs and services overlap while the burden being placed on the hard working people of Middletown perpetually escalates.

It is not my opinion that the Democrats would have done any better.

In fact, if history is any clear barometer of the future, things would most likely be even worse. The point here is that when those in leadership, from any political party, do not feel enough pressure to do the tough work required to protect their constituents, as a result of consistent and continued dominance, good things rarely happen.

This past year a historic occurrence took place in NJ.

I’m not talking about the the elections of 2010. The event of which I write took place in a small town in north west Jersey called Vernon. One party, dwelling in decades of political dominance, continued to disregard the will of the people. Even those that helped elect them were ignored. What did the good people do? They fired the entire lot from the Mayor on down through the council.

This coming Tuesday, Middletown residents do not need to fire everyone but they will have a chance to break up the party domination and put an honest, reliable and dedicated public service individual on the township committee.

Independent, Mr. Richard Morrill

Richard will do the right things for Middletown. With no affiliation to any one except the people, Richard won’t be a part of the problems, he’ll work to solve them. Middletown needs a smart and strong willed representative on their side. Rich will be that person if you elect him this Tuesday.

I have known Richard for close to 20 years and I am proud to call him a friend. For years we have have played golf together and have become as close as two non relatives could be. I tell you this because during those years, when Rich was not running for any office, he always talked about the problems facing Middletown. He truly cared about the waste and redundancies he saw in the township.

Richard has not changed. He continues to care about the people of Middletown but now he has decided to try and make a difference. He needs your help on Tuesday so he can begin that excursion.

Please understand that even though I am a Tea Party activist, I represent no Tea Party in this endorsement of Rich. He is my friend and I truly believe in his dedication and desire to make things right in Middletown.

Also, many of you that know me, know I am steadfastly opposed to supporting 3rd party candidates for statewide and National elections. This is different. This election for the council needs an infusion of independent thought and energy. Richard Morrill will not let the people of Middletown down. I can promise you that.

This election Tuesday is very important and TPATH urges every voter to vote the Republican Line in every Senate and Assembly race. Governor Christie needs a Republican Assembly and Senate to continue his work to bring New Jersey back to its rightful place as one of the greatest states in this wonderful country.

Thanks,
Dwight Kehoe
http://www.tpath.org

Note:
Just because I posted this letter doesn’t mean that I agree with the opinion of the writer but any vote for Richard Morrill is a vote against Fiore and Murray and I can live with that.

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Filed under Independent Candidate, letter to the editor, Middletown Township Committee, Richard Morrill

Letter: Carol Fowler Has Learned How To Listen and Is Committed To Serving Middletown Residents

I believe that a person who serves a community as an elected member of a governing board must be able to listen to their constituents with patience and empathy. During 10 years of intense, often emotional, listening, Carol Fowler, candidate for the Middletown Township Committee, has learned that lesson well.

In her current work as Assistant Curator of the National Guard Militia Museum and Director of its Oral History program, Carol has recorded interviews with over 400 veterans who have shared their stories with her, often for the first time. Their tales are a mixture of humor, heroism, fear and wonder – unique personal accounts of ordinary people caught up in extraordinary events. These stories grew from Carol’s work developing the series, “Triumphant Spirit: America’s World War II Generation Speaks” produced for Brookdale College. Carol Fowler will always be remembered for capturing these stories that are treasured by family and friends and preserved in national archives.

Carol is as committed to serving Middletown residents with as much dedication and integrity as she has served our veterans. I hope every Middletown resident casts their vote for Carol Fowler. With Carol on the Committee, we will be heard once more!

Respectfully,
Marilyn Michaels
Red Bank

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Filed under Carol Fowler, Center for US War Veterans' Oral Histories, Democratic Candidate, letter to the editor, Middletown Township Committee