A good friend of mine recently had a conversation with a retired wastewater engineer from Berkeley Heights who has been a resident for 20+ years.  This gentleman could not believe how his town was behaving over 6,000 gallons of residential waste.  He used a few expletives and said that there is no way this is about the use of our sewer.  “Politics are definitely at play.  There is more involved than meets the eye.” 

As an outsider looking in from a neighboring town, it seems so obvious to me that the governing body of Berkeley Heights has another agenda.  What I don’t understand is how so many of its residents do not suspect this too?  This issue has become larger than life.  Suspiciously large!  There must be a lot at stake for your mayor to be rallying the community to go against the Berkeley Aquatic Club, a group that has enhanced the lives of so many for so long.  I cannot help but wonder how many very influential powerful people live in the Emerson Lane area.

Planting the fear that taxes may increase is a very effective scare technique.  Unfortunately in this case, there is no merit to these claims.  Many outsiders looking into your town no longer see your town in the same positive way.  After witnessing a public display of trying to destroy a group that works primarily with children, I could not in my right mind recommend a family to live in Berkeley Heights.  Your town’s image has been soiled.

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Berkeley Heights is going to lose a gem.  Pools come and go, but good coaches/teachers are not easy to find.  From how I see it, Jim Wood’s BAC has definitely taken the high road throughout this campaign and I give BAC a lot of credit.  They have conducted themselves with integrity and honesty and they will only get stronger from this experience.  And to all of the Berkeley Heights’ residents that have supported the BAC, my hat is off to you too.  It takes courage to stand up for what you believe, especially when it is unpopular.

I trust that eventually it will be very clear to all what really drove the calculated attack on the Berkeley Aquatic Club.  I would not want to be one of the residents that vote “no” only to later find out that their leaders have misled them.