Manchester Mayor Michael Fressola on nonpartisan local government
The mayor of Manchester shares his thoughts; let the community know what you think in the comments section below.
A very important situation has come to my attention recently which prompts me to issue this warning to our residents.
Before I give you the details of this issue, allow me to say that we were warned about this going to be attempted years ago by one of the individuals most responsible for the quick recovery of the township from the worst political and financial scandal in the history of the state of New Jersey. That scandal occurred prior to 1990.
It was in late 1989 that our residents were successful in defeating the political party that had controlled the township for many years, and whose elected and appointed officials were responsible for the financial debacle that occurred. It was at that time that the good citizens of Manchester, disgraced by what had taken place, decided by vote that they wanted a Non Partisan form of government, free of control from any Political Party.
That was accomplished and has been very effective for the past 20 years.
The warning, I referred to above, was to be constantly on guard, because one or the other political parties would at some time down the road, attempt to regain control of the Manchester government. Well that prophesy or warning has come true. There is a political club in Manchester, controlled by two former mayors of other towns in New Jersey, where there had been issues of questionable history, have begun a campaign to attempt to regain control.
They are attempting to start a campaign to change the dates for Manchester's Non Partisan elections to November when general elections are held with the hope that it would be the first step in defeating our non-partisanship. They will tell you that it will save the town a great deal of money. This is a fallacy which I will detail for you. The cost of a non-partisan election in May to each property taxpayer in Manchester is approximately $1.72 every other year or $.86 yearly. I believe that is a small price to pay to protect our residents from the interference in the way our administration conducts its non-partisan running of the Township.
As mentioned above, this attempt to move elections is their first step. If successful in accomplishing this, their next logical step would be to attempt to convert Manchester elections to allow partisan political elections to take place.
I will keep you further informed as they attempt to move forward.
I believe that our 20 year history of non-partisan government on a local level works, and that a local government should serve its residents and ignore the political pressures brought to bear by political party bosses. I sincerely hope you, our residents, agree.
Please contact me if you have any questions regarding this very important issue.
This editorial was written by Manchester Mayor Michael Fressola and does not reflect the views of Manchester Patch.