As an unopposed candidate for re-election to Council, my goals are to continue to represent the people of Summit with leadership, teamwork and integrity. I thank our Summit taxpayers for supporting my efforts over the past three years. In order to develop reliable future governance from our highly qualified base of young professionals, I encourage volunteers to run for election to Council and serve on our numerous Boards and Committees, regardless of party affiliation.
As 2010 & 2011 Council President Pro-Tem, I served as Finance and Personnel Chair, led efforts to reduce property tax increases and chaired both our auditor and solicitor search committees. We have a superior City Staff and compatible Common Council and Mayor. Ellen Dickson has been an excellent communicator who advocates total transparency. Aside from my candidacy, we’re lucky to have former Councilman Al Dill ready to serve again. We’re also fortunate to have effective legislators who represent Summit well, including Congressman Leonard Lance, State Senator Tom Kean, Assemblyman Jon Bramnick and our own Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz.
As 2012 Council President, I’ve encouraged conciliatory relationships with Freeholders and State Legislators, organized the first joint meeting of Council and the Board of Education, and stressed fiscal responsibility, public safety, education and ethics as priorities. My efforts to develop meaningful bipartisan dialogue have enabled Summit to coordinate ideas with State Senator Ray Lesniak, County Freeholder Chair Al Mirabella, Elizabeth Mayor Chris Bollwage and others for the Passaic River litigation, County budget reductions and property tax equalization. Hopefully, many positive results will emerge from these associations.
Our future challenges include: flat budgets for the City and Board of Education; encouraging the County Freeholders to budget within the 2% spending cap; controlling debt service in this unstable economy; improving City parking; monitoring the Overlook helipad appeal; reconciling our Ameripay mediation; seeking indemnification from the Passaic River litigation; encouraging further downtown development; and, implementing shared services and effective corporate and community relations.
On behalf of Summit Council, we welcome your recommendations to improve our governance.