To the Editor:
“Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.” Straight from John Adams.
Or more simply, facts matter.
So let's have the facts:
https://www.tapinto.net/towns/chatham/categories/letters-to- the-editor/articles/have-your- voice-heard- vote-yes
"On April 21st, Chatham Borough and Chatham Township residents go to the polls to vote on the 2015-2016 School Operating Budget and a $24.8 million Bond Referendum...As one of the many old-timer, front-line observers, I look forward to casting my Yes vote for this sound, forward-thinking referendum and I hope you will do the same."
This appeared on the bottom of our mailer:
“FACT CHECK: “LTE: Have Your Voice Heard: Vote Yes.” TAP Into Chatham 14 April 2015. Web”
Stacey Ewald was President of the Chatham Education Foundation when this Referendum was put up to vote. Many residents had expressed serious concerns over the “up or down” nature of the proposal, its size and the impact to their taxes. It was, as a result, soundly rejected by nearly 70 percent of residents.
Ms. Ewald was an insider, working closely with the BOE at the time. Her opinion carried weight and she could have brought the views of the public to the Board before they acted.
She and her ticket now say they want to engage and listen to the community, yet when the community spoke the loudest and with clarity, she either didn’t listen or chose to ignore the residents.
As far as changing the character of Chatham:
http://www.newjerseyhills.com/chatham_courier/news/chatham-township-committee-candidates- favor-negotiated- affordable-housing-settlement/article_0e01c490-0a71- 5147-b0d1- f3be8b4223b0.html
"Three candidates running for the Township Committee agreed that negotiating is the best way for the township to deal with affordable-housing litigation during a candidates forum Tuesday, May 16" Chatham Township has a 200 plus year history of being a farming community. Across the Community, we have worked hard to protect that sense of Township through a balance of passive and recreational open space.
Urban sprawl has consumed almost every town between Chatham Township and New York City but we will continue to work and make no apology for trying to preserve what we have already protected.
Increasing the size of government & raising taxes/spending:
"In general, the Democratic challengers voiced the opinion that Chatham Township should have its own recreation department and Sheth pushed the idea of a Community Center.”
On the one hand the Democrat ticket says they want to engage in more shared services and then on the other they want to hire back a separate Recreation Director for Chatham Township. Note to the Democrat ticket: we have a “joint” Recreation Department, and under a shared services agreement, we already share a Recreation Director.
Throw in more recycling, community center and local government “owning” activities pretty much means increasing the size of government. Bigger government, and more taxes.
Engaging in facts and pointing out a candidate’s record may be inconvenient for those trying to hide their record but it is not dirty politics.
However, the Democrat ticket willfully distorting a statement made by Karen Swartz on the housing stock of our community and “understanding the complexion of our immigration policy” into somehow implying a racist or bigoted comment is not only dirty politics, it is just downright disgraceful. It is race baiting and divisive to our community, brought to you by the very people who tell us we need to be more welcoming.
Our bullet points were based on facts.