Dear Editor,

Berkeley Heights is a special community steeped in tradition and respectful of its heritage. We all moved here or chose to stay due to the good schools, wonderful sense of community and beautiful surroundings.  While there are many challenges facing our community due to decisions made in the past, we now have a town council that is independent, trustworthy and looking to gain specific skills that will help them to deal with the current challenges.  What are these challenges?

  • Beat up Roads - we can all see this as we drive around

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  • Woefully out of date municipal/recreation center

  • Recreation fields in poor condition

  • Keeping up with services

All of these issues, not only affect property values and quality of life, but they cost money to fix and maintain. As the town only gets $0.18 out of every tax dollar to run the municipality, we need specific skills and knowledge to make every penny count.  In addition, we need people who can think out of the box and aggressively pursue county, state and federal grant money, as well as public/private partnerships.  I believe Peter Bavoso and Manny Couto have the specific skills necessary to navigate through these choppy waters. Peter Bavoso and Manny Couto are experienced professionals who understand that the essential tools of collaboration, communication, negotiation, budgeting, and management are part of any successful outcome. Peter Bavoso is a senior communications executive who understands the importance of sharing information with all stakeholders to be successful in bringing communities together and winning recognition for our achievements.  Such recognition can have a snowball effect in winning future grants. With 30 years of real estate experience, Manny understands what drives property values and a vibrant community.  He would bring this expertise at a critical time when Berkeley Heights is trying to build a new municipal center and redevelop the downtown which has had significant vacancies since King’s Supermarkets relocated.  

Pete and Manny are roll up your sleeves, get the job done kind of people.  I want people representing me that I trust to get the job done.  Bavoso and Couto are the people I trust. Please join me in supporting them by voting Column B on November 8.

Sincerely,

Tisha Mannino