Sunday, March 31, 2019

Why I Am Running for Re-election to City Council: Sustain Progress and Reduce Taxes

I am completing my fourth term as Second Ward Councilman and I have seen the good, the bad and the ugly of Plainfield government.  These days I am seeing the good. After many years of local government being a hindrance to progress, city hall has become a catalyst for positive change on public safety, road paving, parks and recreation, fiscal health, economic development and health. As the longest serving Council member, I have been instrumental in learning from past mistakes and identifying solutions.  My relationships within the city, created over many years through my work as a Cook School parent, a youth soccer coach, Board of Education member and Planning Board member, have enabled me to build awareness, understanding trust for city initiatives.

We are making progress in Plainfield but we need to work harder to make it sustainable.  That requires an objective view of the good, bad and ugly.  A refusal to go along to get along.  That's what I bring to city government.  I've created space for questioning of proposals from the administration: most recently opposing the proposed ordinance giving sole power to the administration for employee lay-off plans and voting against the redevelopment plan allowing a Wawa.

There is a lot more to do in Plainfield. My top priority this year is a property tax reduction.  The Mapp administration has presented the Council a leaner budget than previous administrations.  But after many years of 2% to 4% tax increases, it's not enough to say a small increase or even no increase is satisfactory.  Our baseline property taxes are too high and the high PMUA fees just make it worse.

Reducing taxes will be painful and will require leadership from local elected officials.  I have the experience, credibility and relationships necessary to take on this goal. 

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