Sunday, October 25, 2020

Statement: Middletown Republicans Failed to File 4 Years’ Worth OF NJ ELEC Campaign Finance Reports

For Immediate Release: 
10/24/20

 A Statement from Middletown Democratic Chairman Michael Morris concerning the failure of the Middletown Township Republican Executive Committee to file 4 years’ worth of campaign finance reports.

 Middletown –In response to the recent Asbury Park Press article, “Middletown GOP says they’ve filed campaign finance reports. NJ says they haven’t”, which uncovered a serious violation of NJ campaign finance law by the Middletown Township Republican Organization. The Organization has failed to disclose campaign financial records to the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission (NJ ELEC) for the last four years. 

 The last report on file with NJ ELEC on behalf of the Middletown Republican organization is from the 3rd quarter of 2016 and showed over $39,000 on hand. Since that time the Middletown Republican organization has made contributions to others in the amount of $22,650, all of which has gone unreported and there is now no way to tell who campaign contributions came from, to whom the Middletown Republicans donated funds to or what amount of money changed hands during this period.

New Jersey pay-to-play laws are very specific and are designed to end the practice of “wheeling”, which is when an entity channels money through different political committees to avoid contribution limits.

 Chairman Morris states:

 “It’s said that if you want to uncover the facts all you need to do is “follow the money”. Unfortunately, that isn’t possible here. There is no way for the public to know who campaign contributions came from, to who the Organization directed funds to or what it spent money on over the past four years. Apparently, the Middletown Republicans must think they’re above the law.

 “In addition, we find out the Treasurer responsible for filing these reports is none other than the Mayor’s wife, Alannah Perry who also happens to be the daughter of former mayor, now NJ State Assemblyman, Gerry Scharfenberger. You would think she’d know better."

 “When you combine this with the release of thousands of private email addresses from the township’s emergency alert database, that Tony Perry’s 2018 campaign used to make false and misleading accusations against a Democratic rival in 2018, you have to wonder about the ethics of not just the Perry family but the entire Middletown Republican Organization”.


Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Failure To File NJ ELEC Paper Work Puts Middletown Republican Organization In Financial Jeopardy: Should Tony Perry Resign?


It came to light yesterday that the Middletown Township Republican Executive Committee (Middletown GOP) has failed to file required New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission (NJ ELEC) paperwork for the past 16 quarters, going back to October 2016. The last report on file with the NJ ELEC is for the 3rd quarter of 2016

This is bad on so many levels and furthers the argument that myself and others have been making over the years, Middletown Republicans are corrupt to the core. Where are they getting their money from? Who are they giving money to? Pay-to-Play comes to mind as well as the wheeling of campaign donations and expenses and potentially money laundering isn't out if the question.

As for the last report on record with NJ ELEC all the way back in 2016, the Middletown Republicans had $39,439.11 on hand after reporting. How much money did they have on hand afterwards to end the year? We don't know because a 4th quarter, year end report was never filed, neither were subsequent reports thereafter for the next 15 quarters leading up to October 2020.

We know the Middletown Republican Executive Committee has been active during this time because expenditures of $19,650 have been reported by outside candidates and committees in their NJ ELEC filings, the most recent being a $650 donation to Sheriff Shaun Golden for his reelection campaign, made in February of 2020.

Maximum fines associated with this non-compliance can be as large as $8,600 per incident. 16 quarters  of failing to file reports with NJ ELEC could cost the local Republicans upwards of $138,000. Interestingly however, the organization is not responsible to pay these fines. As punishment, it's the organizational Treasurer and potentially the Organizational Chairman who are on the hook for payment.

What's so interesting and intriguing about that little fact is that the organizational Treasurer for the last report filed back in October 2016, was the wife of current Middletown Mayor, Tony Perry. Mrs. Perry also happens to be the daughter of former mayor, now LD 13 Assemblyman Gerry Scharfenberger.

There is a major conflict here and it just might behoove  Perry to resign from the mayorship of the Township as well as step down from the Township Committee itself.  Since Scharfenberger appointed his son-in-law to the Township Committee back in 2017 and his daughter failed to file the proper paperwork with NJ ELEC, he has some explaining to do himself .... Stay tuned for further developments. 



 






Friday, October 16, 2020

Beware of the Sample Ballot

Sample Ballot
 

FYI - Be prepared and let everyone know, it has come to my attention that sample ballots will be mailed out to residences through out the State and Monmouth County starting on 10/23 whether you have already returned your vote-by-mail ballots or not.

People no doubt, will be confused as to why they are receiving a sample ballot even though they have voted already. People should be aware and let others know that they can ignore the sample ballot when it arrives, especially if they have already voted. 

The sample ballot could be identical to the vote-by-mail ballot that everyone has already received .... it will not and does not replace the mail-in ballots that everyone already has or has sent back to the County. 

It should be noted that sample ballots did not go out to voters before the Primary elections earlier this year as normal. People need to know they can ignore them if they have already voted. If people haven't voted yet, they need to know not to mail or drop off the wrong voting form.


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UPDATE 10/20:  There's no need to fear as previously warned. It appears that if voters receive anything in the mail over the next few days from the County Clerk, it will information on where to physically vote (polling locations in your town) and the locations of County Dropboxes. An actual sample ballot should not be mailed to residents as previously mentioned. --MM


What's the Deal with Voting on Nov. 3rd?


Wow, I can't believe I haven't posted since July 4th! A lot has been going on since then which I'll fill everyone in on at a later time. But for now, people have been asking me, what's the deal with voting on election day? So let me try and explain as best I can. Keep in mind, this information is Middletown specific but for the most part it is similar throughout Monmouth County and the State.

So here's the deal that everyone must know and understand ... the polling locations will be open on Nov. 3rd and there will be 10 locations available in Middletown where residents can vote. There are 46 voting districts in Middletown, so each of the polling locations will hold multiple districts within. It should be noted however, that if anyone goes to a polling location to vote in-person they will be asked to fill out a paper provincial ballot, which will be counted after all other ballots are counted.

From what I understand there will be 1 voting machine per location (not district), which may or may not be the case. In order for someone to vote by machine, that person must be disabled and unable to psychically fill out a paper ballot. That person must also sign an affidavit claiming that they are in fact disabled. If it is found that they aren't disabled, they can be prosecuted for voter fraud.
Be aware that the mail-in ballots can be taken to the polling locations on Election day to be handed in. However, the person handing in their ballot will need to sign the "book" and show ID at that time. The ballot may then be treated as a provisional ballot and not be counted until all other votes are counted.
Locally, the best bet is to drop off ballots at a dropbox located at either Middletown Town Hall, Middletown's Croydon Hall, the Hazlet DMV location or any other location within Monmouth County.
If people prefer to mail their ballots via USPS the ballots must be postmarked by Nov. 3rd and received no later than Nov.10th ... the sooner they are mailed the better.
There is also an option to vote in person anytime at the Monmouth County Board of Elections (and Clerks office, I think).

I hope that answers everyone's question.

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UPDATE 10/20:

There is still a little confusion regarding mail-in ballots that are delivered to the polls on Election Day. Those ballots will NOT be treated as provisional ballots and counted after all other ballots. They will however be the last mail-in ballots counted before provisional ballots are counted.

Before provisional ballots are counted the local Board of Elections must certify those that filled out provisional ballots on Election Day, did not also mail-in a ballot previously. Provisional ballots will be crosschecked with mail-in ballots to ensure that no one votes twice.... MM

Thursday, July 2, 2020

Successful Rally for Social Justice and Spread Love Not Hate In Middletown

Last Sunday's "Rally for Social Justice and Spread Love Not Hate" in Middletown was very peaceful, respectful and to everyone's opinion successful.

As stated previously, the protest rally was organized by current students and recent alumni from Middletown Schools and took place with the full support of the Township Committee and the Middletown Police Department. Middletown's Chief of Police, CraigWeber was among the several speaker to address those gathered; his comments were well received by all.

The Middletown Patch posted afterwards, "Police Chief, Students Speak At Middletown Social Justice March" describing, pretty accurately the event that day. Full disclosure, I happen to be quoted in the article and approve of its content.

I also want to give a shoutout to those who organized this rally (I know and they know, who they are), they did a great job of keeping it peaceful and respectful for all who attended, which I estimate at 300-400 people,which you can tell by the pictures, not the 150 the Middletown Police estimated for the Patch.

Also of note as you can tell, everyone had a mask!




Middletown Police Chief Craig Weber



MHSN Valedictorian Jada Tulloch

                                   






Saturday, June 20, 2020

Peaceful Middletown Solidarity Rally For Social Justice

I am amazed that something like this is actually happening here in Middletown. Middletown as we know, is a vastly white and generally conservative community that tends to forget that 6% of the community is minority based. As a results, there is a denial by many that think racism doesn't exist here ... but it does. I undersatnd that this rally has the support of Middletown Mayor Perry,  Police Chief Weber and School Superintendent Dr. George as well as the Middletown Board of Education.

This "Peaceful Middletown Solidarity Rally For Social Justice",  has been organized by a group of current students and recent alumni of the Middletown school system, some of which signed an "Open Letter to Dr. George, the Board of Education, and the MTPSD Faculty" requesting that Middletown schools diversify it's curriculum and "...delve more deeply into the struggles that marginalized groups have faced throughout American history..."

For those interested in joining the students, they will meet at the Middletown High School North parking lot at 3pm. They will walk down Tindall Rd to Park Ave to East Rd to Schwartzel Dr and back to High School North, at which point there will be a number of guest speakers.

I would suggest if you plan on attending, bring a chair and a couple bottles of water. You'll probably be glad you did.


Monday, April 6, 2020

British Writer Pens The Best Description Of Trump I’ve Read

MARCH 8, 2019 ~ MICHAEL STEVENSON


Someone on Quora asked “Why do some British people not like Donald Trump?” Nate White, an articulate and witty writer from England wrote the following response:
A few things spring to mind.

Trump lacks certain qualities which the British traditionally esteem.

For instance, he has no class, no charm, no coolness, no credibility, no compassion, no wit, no warmth, no wisdom, no subtlety, no sensitivity, no self-awareness, no humility, no honour and no grace – all qualities, funnily enough, with which his predecessor Mr. Obama was generously blessed.
So for us, the stark contrast does rather throw Trump’s limitations into embarrassingly sharp relief.

Plus, we like a laugh. And while Trump may be laughable, he has never once said anything wry, witty or even faintly amusing – not once, ever.

I don’t say that rhetorically, I mean it quite literally: not once, not ever. And that fact is particularly disturbing to the British sensibility – for us, to lack humour is almost inhuman.

But with Trump, it’s a fact. He doesn’t even seem to understand what a joke is – his idea of a joke is a crass comment, an illiterate insult, a casual act of cruelty.

Trump is a troll. And like all trolls, he is never funny and he never laughs; he only crows or jeers.

And scarily, he doesn’t just talk in crude, witless insults – he actually thinks in them. His mind is a simple bot-like algorithm of petty prejudices and knee-jerk nastiness.

There is never any under-layer of irony, complexity, nuance or depth. It’s all surface.

Some Americans might see this as refreshingly upfront. Well, we don’t. We see it as having no inner world, no soul.

And in Britain we traditionally side with David, not Goliath. All our heroes are plucky underdogs: Robin Hood, Dick Whittington, Oliver Twist. Trump is neither plucky, nor an underdog. He is the exact opposite of that. He’s not even a spoiled rich-boy, or a greedy fat-cat.

He’s more a fat white slug. A Jabba the Hutt of privilege.

And worse, he is that most unforgivable of all things to the British: a bully. That is, except when he is among bullies; then he suddenly transforms into a snivelling sidekick instead.

There are unspoken rules to this stuff – the Queensberry rules of basic decency – and he breaks them all. He punches downwards – which a gentleman should, would, could never do – and every blow he aims is below the belt. He particularly likes to kick the vulnerable or voiceless – and he kicks them when they are down.

So the fact that a significant minority – perhaps a third – of Americans look at what he does, listen to what he says, and then think ‘Yeah, he seems like my kind of guy’ is a matter of some confusion and no little distress to British people, given that:

• Americans are supposed to be nicer than us, and mostly are.
• You don’t need a particularly keen eye for detail to spot a few flaws in the man.

This last point is what especially confuses and dismays British people, and many other people too; his faults seem pretty bloody hard to miss.

After all, it’s impossible to read a single tweet, or hear him speak a sentence or two, without staring deep into the abyss. He turns being artless into an art form; he is a Picasso of pettiness; a Shakespeare of shit. His faults are fractal: even his flaws have flaws, and so on ad infinitum. God knows there have always been stupid people in the world, and plenty of nasty people too. But rarely has stupidity been so nasty, or nastiness so stupid.

He makes Nixon look trustworthy and George W look smart.

In fact, if Frankenstein decided to make a monster assembled entirely from human flaws – he would make a Trump.

And a remorseful Doctor Frankenstein would clutch out big clumpfuls of hair and scream in anguish:
‘My God… what… have… I… created?

If being a twat was a TV show, Trump would be the boxed set.

hat tip - Carolyn Schwebel

Monday, March 23, 2020

March 16, 2020 Middletown Township Committee Meeting: The CoronaVirus Edition


Last weeks meeting of the Middletown Township Committee meeting could be characterized as the 'Coronavirus" edition. The meeting lasted just over 17 minutes while Committee members, as well as the paid professionals took seats well spaced from each other, due to the potential contamination from the virus.

Here are the highlights:

Proclamations were read into the record due to no recipients to receive them.

An ordinance was adopted that allows the Township to exceed the municipal budget appropriation limits, if needed. Another ordinance was introduced to purchase property on the east side of Hubbard Ave., by Shadow Lake. There will be a public hearing and a vote to approve this purchase on April 6.

Resolutions were adopted to extend contracts for tree trimming, plumbing and electrician services with the current contractors. Other resolutions were adopted to permit the CFO to pay bills if public meetings are cancelled, to reaffirm the townships' opposition to the Northeast gas pipeline that is proposed to run in the Raritan Bay and another to apply for a grant to help the township become more energy sustainable.



As always you can download a copy of the Meeting Agenda that contains the discussion items and the proposed resolutions and ordinances that were voted on or presented during the meeting. A box around an item is a link, bringing you further into the document to that resolution or ordinance. At the end of the resolution there will be a link bringing you back to the agenda. Attached to this agenda is also the monthly bill list, so that everyone can see how the Township is spending our tax dollars.


Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Middletown Health Department Receives Confirmation of COVID-19 Case at Tomaso Towers

For Immediate Release
March 18, 2020



MIDDLETOWN, NJ – The Middletown Township Department and Health and Social Services received confirmation that a resident of Tomaso Towers has tested positive for COVID-19, the novel coronavirus. The resident is currently hospitalized. Any and all close contacts have been contacted directly by the Health Department.

There are currently three confirmed cases in Middletown. They will be continually monitored by local health officials and positive cases will be shared with the public. Information will be released as it becomes available, however this will be limited by privacy laws. Direct contact persons, organizations and place of work will be notified by health officials as they receive information from the patient.

On March 16th, Mayor Tony Perry and Emergency Management Coordinator Charles Rogers, III signed a local declaration of disaster emergency. This declaration was enacted to protect the health and safety of our community. Click HERE to read the emergency declaration. Access to all municipal facilities has also been restricted through Tuesday, March 31st.

We continue to stress the importance of social distancing in an effort to flatten the curve of this public health crisis. We also ask that you monitor yourself and family members for signs and symptoms of this virus, including fever, cough, shortness of breath or other respiratory illness. If you experience any of these, please contact your medical provider by phone before walking into their office.

If you have general questions about COVID-19, please call the public hotline at 1-800-962-1253 or 1-800-222-1222. Trained professionals are standing by to answer your call 24/7 or visit nj.gov/health. Please note that the hotline is not to locate testing, to get test results or for medical advice. If you have further questions, call the Health Department at 732-615-2095, email covid19@middletownnj.org or visit www.middletownnj.org/coronavirus.

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Pallone Applauds House Passage of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act





Pallone Helped Author New Legislation that Guarantees Free Coronavirus Testing for All Americans, Paid Sick Leave, Protections for Health Care Workers and Provides Important Benefits to Children and Families


Washington, DC – Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ-06) released the following statement after the House of Representatives voted in favor of passing H.R. 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. Pallone is an original co-sponsor of the bill and helped draft key provisions, including a guarantee that all Americans have access to coronavirus testing free of charge, and an increase in the Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP) that the federal government provides to state and territorial Medicaid programs:

“This week, we continued our ongoing work to respond to the coronavirus global pandemic, which has now claimed the lives of more than 40 Americans. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act recognizes the urgency of the moment and prioritizes America’s families by providing critical support to assist those affected by the outbreak.

“I am proud to have helped write this legislation, which ensures that coronavirus testing will be free of charge for all Americans, establishes paid sick leave for those who have to take time off from their jobs, strengthens food assistance for vulnerable Americans and enhances unemployment assistance for Americans who may be laid off or furloughed. It also increases the FMAP for state and territorial Medicaid programs, which will be critical as we prepare for the ongoing economic consequences of the pandemic.

“This national public health emergency requires a coordinated, whole-of-government response to help slow the virus’ spread and keep Americans safe. This package will help us rise to meet the challenge before us. I stand ready to continue to work across the aisle and with the Administration to respond to this global pandemic and help keep Americans safe.”

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act builds on the $8.3 billion emergency coronavirus spending package that was passed and signed into law last week. That package included support for state and local health agencies, vaccine and treatment development, and loans for affected small businesses to lessen the economic blow of this public health emergency. The State of New Jersey is directly receiving at least $15.6 million from that funding package.

A summary of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act is available here.

Bill text is available here.



Saturday, March 14, 2020

Why Not Live Stream Meetings?


With Middletown closing it's doors to residents, wouldn't be great if they opened their virtual door and allowed resident to view a live stream of Middletown Township Committee meetings?


Middletown Minutes


Saturday, February 29, 2020

February 3 & 18, 2020 Middletown Township Committee Meetings


February 3, 2020 Middletown Township Committee Meeting


The Township Committee voted to make Sunnyside Road a through street and lowered the speed limit on the road to 25 MPH in two separate ordinances.

A new ordinance was introduced to increase the number of Deputy Police Chiefs to three and Members of the Committee congratulated the Mayor on his reception of the Spinnaker Award.
As always you can download a copy of the Meeting Agenda that contains the discussion items and the proposed resolutions and ordinances that were voted on or presented during the meeting. A box around an item is a link, bringing you further into the document to that resolution or ordinance. At the end of the resolution there will be a link bringing you back to the agenda. Attached to this agenda is also the monthly bill list, so that everyone can see how the Township is spending our tax dollars.

February 18, 2020 Middletown Township Committee Meeting


The meeting began with an above capacity crowd. The room was filled, with the aisles packed and out into the lobby. It was an evening to celebrate the right for women to vote with the passing of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution on August 18, 1920. Women, who have been elected to office, attended as did five young ladies from Nut Swamp School.
If this was not enough, the Township Committee adopted an ordinance increasing the number of Deputy Chief of Police positions from one to three. Two new Police Chiefs were sworn into the new positions. Three other officers were sworn in as Sergeants and two other officers sworn in as Lieutenants. One of the Lieutenants just happened to be a women, the first women Lieutenant in Township history. Overall, it was an amazing night for women.

After all of the ceremonies were over, the Court Room cleared and the Committee continued with the business of the Township.

An ordinance was adopted that would restrict parking at Normandy Park. A parent spoke regarding his son parking there during school hours. The family lives in the HS North area, but decided that their son would go to HS South. To avoid paying for busing, they allowed their son to drive to school. Normandy Park is the closest place for the son to park because he is not a senior and only seniors are allowed to park on HS property. The Township Committee recommended that the father bring his concerns to the Board of Education. The Committee explained that the parking lot at Normandy Park is for park use only, according to Green Acres rules and the Township recently received Green Acres funding to upgrade the fields in the park.
Another ordinance was introduced to sell a small, unused lot to a developer who owns adjoining property. A different ordinance was introduced to regulate the amount of leaves and brush a homeowner can place at the curb for collection. The ordinance will limit the amount of debris placed at the curb to 4 cubic yards, or the size of a pickup truck bed filled to the top of the cab. A public hearing and a vote for adoption will be held at the March 2 Township Committee meeting.

As always you can download copy of the Meeting Agenda that contains the discussion items and the proposed resolutions and ordinances that were voted on or presented during the meeting. A box around an item is a link, bringing you further into the document to that resolution or ordinance. At the end of the resolution there will be a link bringing you back to the agenda. Attached to this agenda is also the monthly bill list, so that everyone can see how the Township is spending our tax dollars.