Saturday, March 5, 2011

Can Someone From Middletown Call Someone From Brick To find Out How A Special Budget Referendum Is Supposed To Work?

During the February 16th Library Board meeting, someone asked about the possibility of Middletown exceeding the new State mandated 2% cap on budgets and the possibility of placing a budget referendum question on the ballot that would allow voters to authorize exceeding the cap if they thought it was necessary to retain services.

The question was answered by Township Administrator Tony Mercantante and the goon that acts as Township Attorney Brian Neslon. They answered that Middletown had no intention whatsoever in exceed the 2% cap and even if they did there was no mechanism in place that they knew of, that would guide them towards how a special budget referendum would be putting place or carried out.

Mercantante stated something to the fact that, like most of what the law makers in Trenton do, they passed a provision with no guidance on how to carry it out or how to finance it. Mercantante and Nelson were both adamant that Middletown was not going to spend one dime to carry out a special election just so that voters can approve or disapprove a proposed budget, without funding from the State.

Fast forward now to Wednesday when it was reported in the Asbury Park Press that Township of Brick is planning to hold a special budget referendum to exceed the State mandated 2% cap. At stake are the jobs 172 employees that would include 29 police officers and 117 members o the public works department.

Now the article didn't mention when or how the special budget question was going to happen, but it is a good bet that the question will be posted on the ballot of the next set of elections coming up, which would be the school board election in April.

Contrary to popular beliefs in Middletown, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure this stuff out. I believe this is why Governor Christie and those in the State Legislature have told municipal leaders that their budgets need to be submitted to the State by mid March, so if there is a need for a special referendum it could be without the need for a special election or any extra costs associated with it.

It would just be nice to get a straight answer out of people that represent Middletown for a change, without it being turned into a big political name calling game.

So can someone from Mercantante's office call down to Brick and ask someone in the Mayor's office down there, the details on how a special election would work to exceed the budget cap if ever needed?


Anonymous said...

There is no one in government in Middletown today that seems to know what they are doing. Nothing but a MOB OF BUFFOONS ! Led by the GOON lawyer.

Merchantante,what's your problem ? Have you risen to your level of incompetence like the rest of these integrity and ethically challenged thugs ?

Guess the residents of this town are getting a real taste of their "incompetent elected officials " aren't they ?


You are getting just what you asked for as not one of them cares one bit about this town. IT"S ALL ABOUT THEIR PARTY !!

Anonymous said...

How typical of this blogger to take things out of context ~ and get them wrong.

But of greater importance is that, once again, this blog and the DHB seemingly have decided that all of a sudden they want MORE taxes. It seems to me that it was only recently that they were screaming for lower taxes.

Now they want a referendum to allow the TC to exceed the mandated 2% cap? Now they want to keep township employees on staff instead of cutting them like they have been calling for?

Partisanship knows no hypocrisy, I guess, because it would seem to an outside observer that this blog is for anything the Township Committee and administration is against, and against anything that they are for. It apparently matters little if that means that the blogger changes his "core beliefs" from one day to the next.

I guarantee you that if tomorrow the TC came out and called for a referendum, that this blog and the DHB would rend their garments and gnash their teeth decrying the "arrogance" of the TC in asking for such an "astronomical tax increase..."

Yet today, they want a refendum to "save jobs."

This blog is becoming more of a joke than the number of votes the favorites of the DHB receive every election.

MiddletownMike said...

Anon 11:38,

It seems that you are the only one taking this post out of context.

I never called for a referendum to allow the TC to exceed the 2% cap and never in this post did I say I would support it.

The purpose of the post was to point out the foolishness of Mercantante and others when they said that they had No idea how a referendum work or when such a referendum would take place.

If you asked me honestly about such a referendum, I think it would be brilliant if the TC was willing to go that route.

If the referendum to exceed the 2% cap was successful, then TC has the public to thank for providing them cover from political attacks. they would say that the Public demanded it,

If the referendum failed then the burden also falls on to the resident tax payers.

It would be a win - win situation for the TC

Instead the TC has chosen to make an enemy of the Library and has decided that it must layoff members of the Police department which has the potential of putting public safety at risk.

So again, if Mercantante and crew are still clueless about how a special referendum is to proceed, they should call some one to find out. It seems that other towns found out how to do it, so Middletown if needed, should find out how also, instead of blaming the Democrats in Trenton for not providing guidance or funds to support it.

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:38 seems to be the same poster who condemns the police in the APP but got their help with a "screwing the people survey" a couple of years ago . IT calls everyone who disagrees with IT,DHBs's and can't come to grips with the fact that lots of people from that poster's own party don't agree with it's take on a lot of what goes on in Middletown.

Who ever said anyone wanted higher taxes...what we want is fiscal responsibility,integrity and for elected officials to FAIRLY represent ALL of the people of this town...don't screw with our schools,don't screw with our library and stop screwing the residents of this town. Seems the DHBs number in the thousands so consider that when you make your broad ridiculous statements.

Thank you, Mike, for keeping us caring people in this town informed. We do appreciate you and this poster for one thinks you do a great job !

Anonymous said...

Do you honestly believe that the Township Administrator is "clueless" about how to hold a referendum?

It's a moot point because the TC has said that they will abide by the cap.

It seems that YOU don't really understand how it would work. The TC has to submit a budget. If they submit one that exceeds the 2% cap, they have to hold a referendum.

Now, if they propose such a budget, you would savage them for their "lack of financial management ability." Right?

So, the alternative is to cut the budget. The layoff plan was filed because it has to be filed early under civil service rules, and before a budget is proposed. The layoffs will be effected if unions don't grant concessions or other sources of revenue (like the township property up for auction or intralocal agreements)aren't in place in time for the budget.

So, the TC is looking for more revenue, looking for concessions on health care, but preparing for the worst if none of that comes to pass. The recreation staff is considered first, but then only the Police are left because, frankly, that's where the dollars are.

What do you find fault with in that?

Anonymous said...

Who ever said the rule of law and respect for the law ever made any difference to these woe begotten BS artists and their (not our) lawyer. They live in their own narrow world and the hell with anybody or anything else.

Not even the law stops them from doing whatever they feel like doing...regardless...Nothing!

They govern by "osmosis" !