To the Editor:

Given that the municipal leadership has been Republican for decades, it is an uphill battle for a candidate on the Democratic slate to win. However, I believe that people should vote person over party, discover what the candidates stand for, and learn how they will best serve our town. I think Bridgewater needs a change and that is why I am voting for Jeffrey Brookner for mayor.

Jeffrey and the Change4Bridgewater slate are running on three key themes: Truth, Transparency and Civility. 

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TRUTH:

The republican candidate for mayor, Mr. Moench, has been on the town council for 12 years. During that time, he voted FOR the Center of Excellence project multiple times before it became politically inconvenient to continue to support the project. He then used the project against Mayor Hayes during the primary.  Mr. Moench now calls himself the “anti-development” candidate. In truth, he was the deciding vote that got this project started.  it seems that Mr. Moench is only anti-development when it serves Mr. Moench.



Jeffrey Brookner has served on the Bridgewater-Raritan Board of Education for the same 12 years.  He has proven his ability to listen to tough issues, consider many opinions, and vote how he feels is best for the district and our staff, the students, and the community. While not every decision was popular, they were made openly, honestly, and ethically. One just needs to ask him about his votes, and Jeffrey will answer frankly.  When one asks Mr. Moench about his previous voting record, he ignores the question.

TRANSPARENCY:

The municipal government under the governance of Mr. Moench has operated with little attempt to help the public stay informed. The meeting agendas are posted last-minute and are extremely cryptic. It may say “Presentation” for example  but not on what or by whom. If you want to see the budget being voted on, it involves a trip to the municipal office during business hours to request a copy. Can’t make a meeting? You’re out of luck.

While Jeffrey Brookner has been on the board of education, transparency has improved tremendously.  Not only are meeting agendas posted online, but all of the attachments are as well.  If you want to see the policy that will be voted on, you can find that easily!  If you can’t make the meeting, no problem - the meetings are audio recorded and posted online so you can hear exactly what was discussed.  When special presentations are given, they are often live-streamed to engage as many community members as possible. Jeffrey will conduct town council meetings with the same openness and honesty he brought to the BOE.  If you want to see initiatives like this implemented for town council and planning board meetings, you want Jeffrey Brookner as your mayor. 

CIVILITY:

During the recent Republican primary election, the lack of civility on both sides of that race was distasteful to say the least. Instead of sticking to the facts, there was name-calling in print and outright hostility in public meetings. These are not the characteristics desirable in a mayor and only demonstrate weakness in people desperate to win. At recent meetings and on-line, the republican slate and even current town council members, have shown hostility and rudeness towards members of the public. If they are rude and hostile while they are running, how do you think they will treat us if they win?

When Jeffrey Brookner was encouraged to run for Mayor, he did so with the explicit understanding that it would be a clean campaign – no name-calling, no ridiculous tactics, no more of the status quo and he has kept his word.  If you want to bring an environment of respect back to Bridgewater’s government, your choice should be clear. 

And you don’t have to take it from me… if you have any questions about the Change4Bridgewater slate’s ideas, simply email them at info@change4bridgewater.org.  They will be transparent, truthful and civil!

Sincerely,

Randi Schweriner

Bridgewater