Union County News

Bonaccorso and Mahr Organize Meeting in Clark for Union County Mayors to Discuss Affordable Housing Challenges

Sal Bonaccorso Credits: Elizabeth Clee
Colleen Mahr, Fanwood Mayor Credits: Ellen Dickson

CLARK, NJ - All 21 Union County mayors have been invited to a meeting in Clark on Aug. 16 to discuss the affordable housing issues facing New Jersey municipalities and the 2 percent arbitration cap for police and fire contracts that expires later this year.  

Mayors Sal Bonaccorso of Clark and Colleen Mahr  of Fanwood will be co-chairing the meeting.  Bonaccorso and Mahr are the second and third longest-serving mayors in Union county respectively, behind Mayor J. Christian Bollwage of Elizabeth.

“Our communities are on a path to being over-built, over-congested and over-polluted in the next 10 to 20 years because of the high-density building that is required to meet the current affordable housing guidelines,” Bonaccorso said. 

Sign Up for E-News

Bonaccorso said he believes the threat to infrastructure, traffic and quality of life in local municipalities is a bipartisan issue. Bonaccorso said he reached out to Mahr because she is a "great mayor and friend" and he knows her town is facing similar challenges.  

“This issue of affordable housing is not a Republican or Democratic issue.  It’s an issue that is not being handled right; it is an issue that needs to be handled right.  You can see how in these auspicious conditions, builders are running wild,” Bonaccorso said in a recent township council meeting. 

Bonaccorso also spoke to assemblymen Jerry Green and Jon Bramnick about the burden high-density housing is putting upon local towns.  Green is the chair of the Housing and Community Development Committee and sits on the Joint Committee on Housing Affordability.  Bramnick is the vice-chair of the Legislative Services Commission.     

“I asked Jerry (Green) to sit down and reconvene a committee hearing to try to bring back COAH or something to that nature that can administrate affordable housing for the state in a much more sensible way than we have right now in New Jersey,” said Bonaccorso.  

Bonaccorso said he shared his concerns with Bramnick during a meeting  with local residents concerned about potential overdevelopment in their town.  Bramnick issued a statement on his Facebook page indicating plans to push for an emergency vote this week  to block the high-density housing being forced on municipalities by the courts.

Mayor Adrian O. Mapp told TAPinto Plainfield, "The City of Plainfield has long been a leader in providing affordable housing beyond what has been legally mandated, and Plainfield has carried the affordable housing obligation for other municipalities over the past two to three decades. We applaud other Union County municipalities for wanting to have a conversation about how they can fulfill their own affordable housing obligation within their respective municipalities."

Mapp is unable to be at the meeting on Aug. 16, but plans to send a representative in his place.

The second item on the agenda for the Union County mayors’ meeting is the expiration of the 2 percent cap on salary increases of police and fire personnel.  The original law began in 2010 as the state worked to limit property taxes rising by more than 2 percent per year. The law was extended in June of 2014 but comes to an end later this year.    

The law is designed to put a cap on the raises police and firefighters can be awarded if an agreement cannot be reached during contract negotiations. The negotiated cap extension allows arbitrators to grant annual raises of 2 percent over the previous year's wages rather than just 2 percent per year. 

Bonaccorso has committed to sharing the outcome of the August mayors’ meeting with the council and community.  

Follow TAPinto Clark for updates as they become available.


TAPintoClark.net  is Clark’s official electronic news source and the only free daily paper.   Sign up for our free daily enews.

Download the TAPinto App!   Click here for Android.  Click here for iOS.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Berkeley Heights

Berkeley Heights’ Women of the Week (WoW) Series features Beth Ferris Sale

March 18, 2018

In honor of the women who are driving change, blazing trails and nurturing society, the Berkeley Heights Diversity Council is pleased to announce an exciting initiative called, Women of the Week (WoW) Series. In the spirit of community, we wanted to honor the women right here in Berkeley Heights who are impacting the world in their own way for the remaining weeks of Women’s History ...

OLP Presents 'Screenagers' a Documentary on Growning Up in the Digital Age

March 18, 2018

Our Lady of Peace Church and Academy in New Providence will be hosting a special screening of the movie "Screenagers" regarding a very important topic for families and youth – “Growing up in the Digital Age.” The movie delves into the important and current topic of children and teenagers and their use of social media and digital devices. The movie is appropriate for ...

Transform Your Relationship with Food


You will receive on-going support, personalized information, realistic and individualized goals that allow for lasting lifestyle changes, amazing recipes, motivation, sample grocery lists, meal planning assistance, advice on avoiding fad diets, objective feedback and tools to avoid lifestyle diseases.

• Healthy eating Healthy ...

Watchung Hills Coin Club's 36th Annual Coin Show is April 8

The annual Watchung Hills Coin Show will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, April 8, at the Elks Lodge #1068, 375 Union Ave. (Rt. 28), Bridgewater.

This is the only show sponsored by a local coin club in Central New Jersey. It offers free admission and parking. Young Numismatists are welcome.

The show is the ideal one-stop shopping venue for sellers, as well as buyers. For those wishing ...

NPHS Student's Response to After School Walk-out Plan at NPHS

March 14, 2018

A group of students file into a science classroom amid a nervous din of chatter, the air is electric with excitement and nervousness. This small group of approximately 30 students are a studious bunch, largely members of the sophomore class with squeaky clean administrative histories. They are currently preparing to defy authority and stand up for what they believe in, even though they had been ...

New Providence's Allen W. Roberts School Gets Security Walk Through by Police Department after Bomb Threat

March 12, 2018

NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - The New Providence Police Department sent a letter to parents and guardians of students at Allen W. Roberts Elementary School after a non-specific bomb threat was reported on Monday afternoon.

It's the second threat  reported at a New Providence school in March. The first threat was reported on March 5th at New Providence High School.

Emergency ...

Avon Loses Its Last ‘Grand’ Hotel to the Claw of an Excavator

March 17, 2018

AVON-BY-THE-SEA, NJ — In less than two days, an Avon-by-the-Sea landmark that stood for 130 years was reduced to a huge pile of rubble. The Norwood Inn no longer stands on the corner of Norwood and Second Avenues — the last of the stately hotels that once graced the streets of Avon.

As onlookers gathered around the demolition site on March 15 and March 16, an excavator clawed its ...

Upcoming Events


Sun, March 18, 10:00 AM


Camp Riverbend Open House

Sun, March 18, 2:00 PM

Miller-Cory House Museum, Westfield

Maple Sugar Sunday



Sun, March 18, 2:00 PM

New Providence Memorial Library, New Providence

Surreal Places, Imaginary Spaces: A Literary Tea

Arts & Entertainment Food & Drink

Sun, March 18, 2:00 PM

Burgdorff Center for the Performing Arts, Maplewood

Maplewood Strollers Present John Patrick ...

Arts & Entertainment

Sun, March 18, 3:00 PM

Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church, Plainfield

Crescent Concerts Presents Annual Festival of ...

Arts & Entertainment

JCP&L Representative Describes Utility’s Actions During Storm Quinn, Answers Residents' Questions

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ – The format of this week’s  Berkeley Heights 'Here and Now' was turned on its head this week. Mayor Bob Woodruff reviewed what happened in the township following Storm Quinn and its predecessor Storm Riley, complete with statistics. He then asked a representative of JCP&L questions about the utility’s response, and how it was ...

Berkeley Heights, Here and Now: Redevelopment Updates

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - The Mayor's Round Table has been rebranded to "Berkeley Heights, Here and Now." This new format will continue to provide updates from Mayor Bob Woodruff, municipal offices and the Communications Committee want to hear from citizens, businesses and community organizations.

Included in this episode, Mayor Bob Woodruff addresses the status of the ...

You Want a Check for How Much!

 My first admissions gig was working for a small liberal arts college with a pretty hefty price tag.  Picture me at a college fair: name tag in place, pile of brochures ready to go.  An eager family would walk up and we’d start a conversation.  One of the first questions I’d get from parents was about cost and the moment that $50,000-plus figure left my mouth I ...

Now That The Dust Has Settled…Smart Tax Moves In 2018

Now that the dust has settled, here are some smart tax moves to lower your taxes and/or avoid higher taxes/penalties in 2018. These steps may be especially helpful if you live in high property and high income tax states (e.g. New Jersey, New York, California) since state and local tax deductions are capped.  Unfortunately all these changes mean you’ll need more time and energy to ...