Category Archives: Opinion letter

Letter: Fooling the People

There’s an old adage: You can fool some of the people some of the time and you can fool some people all of the time but you can’t fool ALL of the people All of the time!

The man who serves as mayor of Middletown this year (elected by four votes,one his own) has far more pressing responsibilities than photo ops considering the financial mismanagement of the township budget. The municipal financial crisis remains unresolved six months into the budget year and the budget will be presented in July to the taxpayers.

Just another error in judgement by Gerard Scharfenberger. The public is well aware this man faces the voters in November. Too bad his priorities are again misplaced as they were when he proposed artificial turf fields during the current deep country wide recession with a near 10 percent unemployment rate. Seems campaign endeavors are more important than resolving the township’s huge budget deficit and the ridiculous over 13 percent increase in the tax burden to support the proposed municipal budget.

Now that ” picture” leaves plenty to be desired by your residents,”Mr. mayor” !!

Barbara R. Thorpe

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Filed under Barbara Thorpe, Gerry Scharfenberger, Middletown, Opinion letter

Letter: Don’t Fall For Same Old Dirty Tricks From Middeltown GOP

The voters in Monmouth County and in Middletown must make a very important decision to make on Nov.3,2009. Do they want representation or do they want domination. Do they want a part puppet or a proven representative of the people. Do they want someone who can think for themselves or do they want someonw who marches to a party chairman’s drumbeat. Do they want someone who wins because they were party to character assassination as a tool to achieve that win .

The residents of Middletown were exposed to the gutter politics of the Middletown Republican Party last year and another dose of it has begun again….more of the low life attacks on opposing candidates this year. Don’t fall for it again !!! Patrick Short and Sean Byrnes are honorable and decent men of integrity.They desreve election to the offices they seek. They are proven winners !

Before any voter succumbs to the vicious,unreliable ploys to undermine either of these candidates,consider the source of these vicious attacks. The tactics originate from a party devoid of clear positions on the issues that are important to every citizen of this municipality and this county. The Middletown Republicans are bankrupt of ideas and will resort anything to win,regardless of how low they have to stoop to achieve that win.We,the voters have seen plenty of this in the recent past!!

Think before you,the voters, of this town and this county pull that lever or touch that screen to VOTE. Do you want to be represented or do you want to be dominated?? The choice is clear…Patrick Short for Middletown Committeeman and Sean Byrnes for Monmouth County Freeholder.

Barbara R. Thorpe

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Filed under Middletown GOP, Opinion letter, Patrick Short, Sean F. Byrnes

Letter: Brady and Tinker Kick-Off "Silly Season" In Hazlet

I know October is the silly season of local politics, but Republicans Jim Brady and Dave Tinker are playing fast and loose with the facts in their campaign for Hazlet Township Committee. They recently dropped a flier on my doorstep which — in addition to attacking Democratic Mayor Kevin Lavan and Deputy Mayor Joe Belasco — sets forth their so-called “mission” for Hazlet.

A laundry list of banal generalizations, in it they promise to “lower taxes, less government spending, stop overdevelopment, preserve open space, promote green technologies,” and “promote government reform.” All important issues. So important in fact, that Mayor Lavan and Deputy Mayor Belasco have been working on them since their election three years ago.

After three years of Republican mismanagement that saw double-digit increases in municipal taxes, Lavan and Belasco stabilized them. As a result, homeowners saw the lowest municipal tax growth in a decade.

And while Republicans talk about reducing spending, Lavan and Belasco have actually done it. By aggressively pursuing shared service agreements, they saved over $200,000 through the elimination of the Hazlet Sewerage Authority, outsourced the health department to Monmouth County for a savings of $260,000 annually, and reduced salary and utility costs by shortening the township workweek from five to four days.

Lavan and Belasco also put the brakes on overdevelopment. They took builders to court to protect quality of life and secured record amounts of grant funding to preserve what little is left of Hazlet’s precious open space. They did more than simply list these issues in a flier around election time, they delivered results and improved the life of our community.

Unfortunately, Mr. Tinker and Mr. Brady are recycled candidates touting a recycled way of doing business. When Republicans last controlled the Township Committee, they raised taxes, increased spending, sold open space, recklessly borrowed millions for the new town hall, and most damning, found themselves ensnared in an FBI investigation that led to the arrest of their hand-picked mayor on charges of corruption.

Every time they run for an office, Tinker and Brady say anything to get elected. It comes as no surprise that their recent flier is consistent with that track record. Which is a shame, because a lot remains to be done for the people of Hazlet. Mayor Kevin Lavan and Deputy Mayor Joe Belasco are working to stabilize property taxes, preserve open space, and improve recreation for young people. They deserve three more years to complete what they set out to do.

Vincent Solomeno

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Filed under Democrat, Hazlet, Opinion letter, Vincent Solomeno

Let officials know it’s time to cut fluff in Middletown

While thumbing through the Asbury Park Press yesterday I can across a letter in the Opinion section of the paper written by Wall residents Rick and Sandy Hankins.
If I didn’t know better, I would have thought that they were expressing concerns about Middletown. Like Middletown, it seems as though the Wall Township Committee has a problem with living within its means and the Hankins are saying enough is enough already. 
After years of property tax increases they are imploring residents to go to the township commitee meetings and voice their concerns and tell their elected officials ” it’s time to cut the fluff”. I happen to agree with them.
On Wednesday May 20th, there will be a special Middletown Township committee meeting to discuss the (5 1/2 month late) proposed township budget. This proposed budget is expected to call for a 9.2% tax increase that will close a $2.4 million shortfall.
Middletown residents need to attend this meeting and make themselves heard loud and clear by telling the committee majority that enough is enough and it is time to cut the fluff.  We can’t afford to pay for their reckless spending anymore.  
Below is an excerpt from the Hankins letter that appear in the APP:
…I have heard that some members of the committee do not believe taxpayers seriously want tax relief. A wise man once said, “the game is won by those who show up.” If taxpayers want our elected officials to heed their voices and are serious about seeing better cost management and local tax relief, now is the time to make your voices heard. Residents should write or e-mail the committee…. 

We can have tax relief if we convince our elected officials we seriously want it. There has been enough fluff included in the budgets over the years that we really could see lower budgets and reduced taxes for several years without much work or any significant loss of services.

Rick and Sandi Hankins


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Filed under Asbury Park Press, cut the fluff, Middletown, Opinion letter, Rick and Sandy Hankins, tax increase, Wall Township