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Clark’s Mayor to State Legislators: 'Lead or Get Out of the Way' on Affordable Housing Issue

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CLARK, NJ – At last week’s Town Council meeting, Mayor Sal Bonaccorso presented the council with a resolution pdfimploring NJ State Legislators to take action on the current affordable housing rules before the  mandates overload local municipalities. 

Bonaccorso explained that Clark complied with court mandates by creating a master plan with fair share housing included as required.  He assured residents that town officials did the responsible and prudent thing in creating a master plan and submitting it to the courts for approval.   

“ We needed to do that to protect Clark through builder’s remedy to protect Hyatt Hills Golf course from becoming a mega-development and low income site, we had to do all that and we complied, which is the intelligent, right thing to do,”  said Bonaccorso.

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According to Bonaccorso, it is time for State Legislators to do their job now.  He indicated it was their failure to comply and take action in a timely fashion which resulted in the superior courts taking control of the affordable housing efforts in the state and deciding what should go in each municipality.    

In his address, Bonaccorso explained that no one really knows how soon or how much of the building outlined in the master plan will ever be built.  He was sure that Clark could be overcome by it if that day comes.    “You can overcrowd the town, you can burden the infrastructure of the town you can most definitely burden the school system.  You try to fix a low income housing option so you destroy the school systems with overcrowding instead,” said Bonaccorso.    His prediction was that Union County will look like Queens, New York in 25 years if something is not done. 

Bonaccorso  urged Legislators to take action and pass common sense affordable housing rules that won’t overwhelm the budgets and infrastructure of municipalities.    “The legislator could put together a COAH type agency to make this go away and to do it the right way,” said Bonaccorso.

The resolution was unanimously adopted by Clark’s Town Council and will be shared with other Union County officials and municipalities throughout the state.   Bonaccorso and the Town Council, hope the resolution will be adopted by other towns too.     

 “So now we are hoping that other towns will join us, our legislators will stop worrying about passing marijuana laws and start passing laws that matter to the people and taxpayers, because let’s face it the only reason they want the marijuana law, is so they can go squander more money down in Trenton…we can get another half a billion dollars in the state till just  to squander away and we will dump all the problems on the municipalities,  because that is what they do.  Republicans and Democrats alike, no one is any better down there in my opinion…  it’s getting like Washington in Trenton  with hatred becoming so vile, nothing is getting done,” said Bonaccorso.

In closing Bonaccorso urged elected officials to open their eyes and take control of the fair share housing crisis happening throughout every town in NJ.     He was hoping that while municipalities deal with the current situation, “ the state legislature will put on their big boy pants and big girl skirts and do what we sent them to do, either  lead or get out of the way, it’s plain and simple,” said Bonaccorso.    

Local government officials use resolutions to document the opinion or intent of a town’s council in a written format.   Resolutions are not ordinances or laws and can be changed at any time.   

 

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