Citizens on both sides of the Oakwood Park issue have one thing in common. Both sides want to improve this resource and make it more usable for sport and recreation purposes. Many of us have had sons and daughters take part in the recreation programs the borough provides. The recreation department does an excellent job in my opinion. The adults who volunteer their time deserve special recognition. The success that the high school athletic teams have enjoyed over the decades is testimony to the hard work and dedication of those who have sacrificed their personal time. Residents on both sides of this issue offer legitimate reasons for their views.

None of us would teach our children to "win at any cost" but unfortunately that seems to be the direction this referendum has taken. Displaying an egregious use of public property, a mass e-mailing was circulated on Monday evening using the recreation department’s e-mail list. The Community Activities Advisory Board signed off on this mailing. The mayor and council have disavowed any knowledge of this malfeasance. The Borough Administrator has taken measures to guarantee that this does not happen again. Regrettably, this misdeed cannot be undone.

Surely those responsible must have had some idea that this type of thing is totally unacceptable at best and most likely a violation of election law subject to review by the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission. Those responsible owe the citizens of our great Borough an apology. To those responsible I ask: Is it better to succeed by fraud than lose honorably? Should we teach our children to "win at any cost"? Just like the referendum question on Nov. 2nd, the answer "No!"

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Bill Hart

New Providence