2005-08-03 / Letters

Letters

Open wallets, Hazlet. Sachs is reaching in

Hazlet needs a new town hall. They could put this town hall on Middle Road, by the library with plenty of parking for a cost of $1.8 million but for some reason Mr. Michael Sachs wants to spend $9.2 million (in principal and interest) to squash it into Veterans Park.

Nine point two million dollars of the Hazlet taxpayers’ money. Our taxes already got a healthy raise this year. Is Mr. Sachs’ mansion in the park going to give us another one next year?

I was at the township meeting where Mr. Sachs was handed more than 1,000 signatures on a petition to stop the desecration of Veterans Park. Does he not care that more than 1,000 taxpayers of Hazlet are against his proposed plan of putting an office building in our park?

Does he even know the difference between an office complex and a park? Evidently not.

What is the reason behind the Township Committee’s refusal to save the taxpayers money? It makes me wonder if this is just a game of politics to these people. Are they refusing to accept a better, more economical plan just because it was presented by a Democrat?

I urge all taxpayers of Hazlet to send Mr. Sachs a message that he should put party politics aside and do what is right for Hazlet. Come out to the town meeting, send a letter or e-mail telling Mr. Sachs to do what is best for Hazlet and quit wasting taxpayers’ money.

The cost of the tax increase our residents received this year did not include this $9 million trophy for Mr. Sachs. Open your wallets, Hazlet. Mr. Sachs is reaching in.

Jeanne Donnelly

Hazlet

Eminent domain shows gov’t owns homes

Stunned, appalled, outrage — a few of the reactions to the recent Supreme Court ruling in the New London, Conn., eminent domain case. Five justices concluded that the state has the right to take one’s property and give it to another for other than public use. That this kind of decision could possibly be reached seems unimaginable to reasonable people. But there is another hot-button issue which shows that such a conclusion is the logical extension of another government policy that affects the right to private property. That issue? The property tax. The assumption that the state has absolute rights over all property is the principle connecting these two abusive practices.

As with eminent domain, the government makes its demands upon you based on the assumption that it has the right to an income from your property. Just as in feudal times, the local lord demands you pay him for the privilege of living on his land. Fail to pay, and you are evicted. Or, if he wants to reward a friend with your property, you are kicked off and it is given to them. In both cases, the state will do what is necessary to maintain or increase the revenue stream they think is their right because it really is their land to do with as they wish. Reaction to this mind-set inspired the Fifth Amendment. Its intention was to end the idea that government can do with your land as they please. Public use was the only exception. The Supreme Court cannot seem to fathom such plain words.

These two injustices — eminent domain and the property tax — are interconnected because both assume something most people in this nation find abhorrent — the government actually owns your home and you have no defense, no rights to it, if they decide to exercise their “rights.”

John C. Hendrickson

Red Bank

Resident thankful for lower speed limit on Route 520

I would like to thank Mayor Larry Fink and the Holmdel Township Committee for lowering the speed limit on Route 520 from 50 mph to 45 mph, and for continuing their efforts to get it lowered still more — to 40 mph. They wrote numerous letters to our freeholders and met with them in person to achieve this goal.

The stretch of road affected goes past Cross Farm, Village School, and several residential neighborhoods. The previous 50 mph speed limit was a safety hazard. Thanks for watching out for those who live, work, or to go school in that area.

Roy Doctofsky

Holmdel

Official’s criticisms on Kyrillos were unwarranted

I am writing in response to Aberdeen Township Manager Mark Coren’s unwarranted attacks on Sen. Joseph Kyrillos. Perhaps Mark Coren should take a look in the mirror. How dare he insinuate that our good state senator, does not have the interests of my family, and the rest of the Aberdeen families at heart? Sen. Kyrillos works hard for our district and for Aberdeen, bringing hundreds of thousands of dollars in state assistance back to Aberdeen. Mark Coren and the all-Democratic-controlled council have brought us vacant store fronts and strip malls, higher taxes, less open space, and a relationship with developers that says Aberdeen is open for business.

Mark Coren wants to talk about money buying influence. Residents should go to the New Jersey Election Commission Web site, and look over the past several election cycles for the Aberdeen Democrats, and see who is better funded. The last election cycle, Aberdeen Republicans had approximately $15,000 while the Aberdeen Democrats had approximately $65,000. So far this year, the Democrats have approximately $36,000,and the Aberdeen Republicans approximately $4,000. It seems to me Mark Coren has a case of the “the pot calling the kettle black.”

Even if Sen. Kyrillos had offered his advice, so what? I applaud Sen. Kyrillos for trying to prevent the next Monmouth Mall from being built in my backyard. Rumor was the all-Democrat council had planned on putting up two 10-story buildings, and an additional 10,000 parking spaces. Just what I wanted — my kids to grow up in a parking lot.

It is you Mr. Coren who is disingenuous. You are a political hack, trying to divert attention from the real issue of the Aberdeen Council’s lack of leadership. Instead, you attack a true public servant like Sen. Kyrillos. Thank you senator for standing up for us in Aberdeen against those who are beholden to developers.

As an example of Mr. Coren’s lack of accountability to us, the taxpayers, I attended the Aberdeen Planning Board meeting June 28. The council discussed the development of the Anchor Glass facility. I was disturbed by Mr. Coren’s actions and by the deafening silence of Mayor David Sobel in not reining Mr. Coren in. The council wants five residential properties included in the redevelopment. Mr. Coren made it seem as though all the residents were happy they were being included. That is not the truth.

One of the women got up and broke down in tears. Another stated they chose to be included because of the recent eminent domain decision by the U.S. Supreme Court. She said there was no way they would have the money to defend their homes against the township and their well-financed developer partners.

Mr. Coren went on to pontificate on how the council hasn’t used eminent domain against its residents. In fact, it did exercise its right to option for this unfair practice. On July 13, 2004, the Council voted to be able to condemn a property in the Freneau section redevelopment. There were no dissenting votes. I was shocked when after the Planning Board meeting, Mark Coren approached one of the women whose property was to be considered in the Anchor Glass redevelopment. He was excoriating this long-time resident and taxpayer, pointing his finger repeatedly in her face.

What arrogance. What contempt for the people he is supposed to serve.

I have never seen arrogance or contempt from Sen. Kyrillos. Mr. Coren would learn well to treat the taxpayers and residents of Aberdeen with the respect and sincerity of our great senator.

Michael Borg

Aberdeen Republican chairman

Buccellato needs to know trust is earned, not a given

I was at the recent press conference held by Democratic candidate for Assembly, Michael Dasaro at the Matawan train station calling for an investigation into Matawan’s choice of Columbia Group for the train station redevelopment. Councilman Paul Buccellato was the only representative of the all-GOP council and he said we just have to trust him that nothing underhanded went on. Well, Mr. Buccellato, trust is something that is earned, not a given.

Prior to winning re-election in 2002, Councilwoman Sharon Roselli was quoted as saying “the land surrounding the train station was not bringing money into Matawan.” I think established businesses like Key Auto Body, Hutchinson Plumbing Supply, 7-Eleven, and Matawan Tool and Die to name a few, would beg to differ. These businesses operate successfully and generate substantial revenue for the town and yet — under the guise of eminent domain — there is no room for any of them in the redevelopment plans. How can we trust a governing body that sees no benefit in keeping our existing businesses?

Councilwoman Debra Buragina — excited about the upcoming downtown spruce-up in 2001 — said “Unless the town shows an interest in the way the downtown looks, we’re not going to bring people in or keep people there.” I couldn’t agree more. When I was looking for a home, I chose Matawan because of the quaint downtown area and that small-town charm. However, the minimal streetscaping that did occur turned out to be just another of this Council’s Band-aids.

There is a blight on our downtown and the all GOP council has allowed it to occur and even encouraged it. Those that work for improvement are aggravated and stalled endlessly with fines and threats and hurdles and hoops to jump over and through. The downtown is riddled with empty or rotating storefronts, pot-holed streets, weed-infested public parking and decaying public buildings. A governing body is bound to act in the best interest of its residents. So whose interest is this governing body acting in? By the look of things, definitely not the residents of Matawan.

MaryRose Malley

Matawan

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