To the Editor:
Mayor Doug Tomson exemplifies “courageous leadership” by meeting the court-mandated goal of Affordable Housing units… before a huge penalty would be imposed on Hillsborough, which would have meant even MORE development.
The burden placed on Hillsborough by the Council of Affordable Housing (COAH)’s obligation number, although totally unfair in this resident’s opinion, has been met by the strong leadership of Mayor Doug Tomson and the Republican Planning Board, thus avoiding a much larger number of housing units awarded by the courts in what is known as a “builder’s remedy.”
Let there be no doubt - if there was any choice in this matter, not one new house would have been approved in recent years.
In an effort to avoid more mandated development, Mayor Tomson, leading the Township Committee, has negotiated the least number of units possible. Actually, many municipalities have negotiated a 10-15 % ratio of COAH to non-COAH units while Hillsborough’s ratio is closer to 25%, which helps meet the mandated COAH goal with LESS overall development.
Additionally, they have largely avoided “sprawl” by clustering most of the development around the Town Center area of Route 206 and Amwell Road. This has helped to preserve much of the town’s rural feel.
Only uninformed or irresponsible politicians would have denied the approved development. If given any choice, he would not allow any more residential development.
But Mayor Tomson’s decisions are the lesser of 2 evils, by far, and show his courage and foresight. Janine Erickson, Mayor Tomson’s running mate, will also bring that kind of far-sighted leadership to the Township Committee.