Friday, February 23, 2007

Follow up to Police Presence at Borough Council Meetings

Mayor Mary Aufsesser stated at the last Matawan Borough Council Meeting that it was at her request that two (2) paid special patrol officers attend the meetings.


That is the question for the day! When questioned from the podium Councilman “Bud” Mullaney at the last Borough Council Meeting retorted, “Did you vote for me?” Is that a prerequisite to accountability in Matawan? It is if you want answers from Councilman “Bud” Mullaney. He certainly was not anyone’s “buddy” that night, that is unless you voted for him. Don’t they have curtains on the voting booths? Wasn't Mullaney violating a constituent's constitutional right? He most certainly was out of line. The whole fiasco was prompted by the following facts:

At a recent Redevelopment meeting, members of the Borough Council advised by Borough Attorney, P. Menna, not to discuss The Matawan Transit Village until the 45-day appeal period is completed. All members complied at that meeting. However, an editorial appeared in the Courier the same day as the Redevelopment meeting. Which prompted the question of was it improper for Councilman Mullaney to speak with the press first.

Some of the comments from the dias were, he was misquoted, who was Jim Purcell, and I don't read the Courier, blah blah, blah. Pursuing a response from Mullaney proved to be fruitless. Finally, Councilman Mullaney said I owe you nothing. On the contrary, Councilman Mullaney, you will be accountable to the taxpayers, residents, constituents, regardless of whether they voted for YOU or not! Jim Purcell, who wrote the editorial, was in the audience and suddenly left only to re-enter later. How convenient? Is Councilman Mullaney interested in his own press coverage or the betterment of Matawan Borough? Let's locate a resident who is willing to waive his/her constitutional right in public and admit they voted for Councilman Mullaney to get answers.
Councilman Mullaney, this is a government by the people and for the people!

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Fools Rush In Where Wisemen Fear to Tread

"Nobody believes the official spokesman...but everybody trusts an unidentified source."

The editor of a weakly publication, has been on a mission in Matawan. Why in Matawan? What exactly is his motivation? While he calls himself a journalist, he belittles and demeans anyone who doesn't agree with him using crass comments, ie Mayor Mary Aufseeser. In a recent editorial, he does his usual insinuations without fact. Should there be proof of any wrongdoing, as the old expression goes, "put up or shut up." It was unfounded remarks that held up the Matawan Transit Village's progress. Barring the lawsuit brought on Matawan by Silver Oaks (a major factor in the delay) the benefit of tax relief would be in place now. Perhaps, just perhaps we all would be in a thriving community right now.

Matawan Borough Council Meetings are the forum for Councilman Bud Mullaney to state his intentions re the Matawan Transit Village. Tell the people who voted for you first, they deserve the respect. Perhaps it wouldn't get his picture in the paper or quotations in editorials, BUT you would EARN the respect of your constituents. His idea of starting all over again,(the reference to "ground zero" if offensive) is not cost effective. Not using Columbia Group, it is likely Matawan will have to give back the money Columbia put in escrow. The escrow account was used to defend the lawsuit, Silver Oaks v. Matawan. Realistically, do you think a new developer is going to pick up the tab for the previous developer? The newly appointed attorney has walked the train station area recently. Is this part of his contract or are we paying hourly rates? Were the new contracts done by the bidding process? The previous attorney and planner are well versed in the project. The choice of appointing a new attorney and planner for this project was not prudent. Current Matawan Redevelopment Committee members have no previous experience in this project. It is questionable whether they have any experience in construction, planning or the financial aspects of building. Would you choose your neighborhood handyperson to build your new home or leave it to professionals?


Monday, February 19, 2007

Matawan Borough Council Meeting

There is a Borough Council Meeting Tues., Feb. 20, 2007 the Matawan Community Center, 201 Broad Street, at 7:30pm. There are several issues that must be addressed by the residents of Matawan. The Transit Village, Road improvements and Matawan Dams Programs. What exactly are the intentions of the Borough Council? Have we appled for all grants available? No stalling till next week, next month, next year. We need answers NOW! Anyone notice that questions always seem to be deferred to a later date? The Transit Village is the only subject which could be stuck in litigation. That is not to say we can be told a general idea of what the Council has planned. Non-commital, of course.
Hope to see more residents attend.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Much to do about Nothing

Are we the only people in attendance last night who walked away shaking our heads? Concerned residents, business owners and their employees came to share their concerns at last night's meeting. As we have stated in our previous blog, nothing much will be said until the 45 days is up for the Silver Oaks v. Matawan lawsuit appeal. At which time the Council expressed their willingness to proceed...with what, is my question? If Redevelopment of the Train Station area is going to take place, eminent domain will acquire the properties required. All parties concerned in that area have a right to be concerned. Prior to the lawsuit brought on Matawan by Silver Oaks these same parties had options, now they are between a rock and a hard place. We in Matawan will be reassessed, then receive a supposed tax break from Trenton that will put us in a situation of increased taxes anyway. However, these people are in a position where they can't sell their homes, businesses, etc. and will be subjected to whatever amount they will receive. If promises were made to any of these people that their properties wouldn't be taken, it is time to "wake up and smell the coffee." Whether or not we like it, whether or not it is fair, Redevelopment will bring eminent domain into play.

Thursday, February 15, 2007


Matawan residents can no longer be apathetic. We residents must become activist or be lead like sheep to the land of higher taxes, no municipal accountability, inept management of Borough funds, etc. Tonight there is a Redevelopment meeting at 7:30pm at the Matawan Community Center, 201 Broad Street. This meeting is taking place prior to the 45 day rule allowing Silver Oaks to appeal the recent decision in the case of Silver Oaks v. Matawan. Seems discussing redevelopment is somewhat premature. If Silver Oaks pursues this litigation to a higher court then we taxpayers will be footing the bill for that lawsuit as we did for the previous case. That was $26,000+ that would have better served our community. It would also halt any development as it has in the past.

We are anxious to see what plans the Matawan Redevelopment Committee proposes. Certain members of the Borough Council have expressed their disapproval of the residential aspect of the previous plan. Will the plan entail dropping a "Woodbridge Center Mall" type structure on some vacant land by the train station? Tonight will tell the tale.

Residents of Matawan this is not the time for apathy, this is the time for action. We know it is difficult to commit yourself to attending meetings. After a long day at work, an even longer commute, you barely have to time to eat dinner, spend time with your families, watch tv before you have to get up and start over again. One night a month, two at the most, take the time to attend meetings. It is a sacrifice that is worth its weight in tax dollars.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Volunteers Needed to Assess Matawan Creek

Volunteers Needed To Assess the Matawan Creek WHAT: LOCAL CITIZENS ARE NOW BEING RECRUITED TO ASSESS THE CONDITION & ECOLOGICAL INTEGRITY OF THE MATAWAN CREEK WATERSHED WHEN: ASSESSMENTS TO BEGIN IN LATE MARCH / EARLY APRIL The Matawan Creek Watershed, which flows into the Lake Lefferts and Lake Matawan, is now at a critical stage. Available data suggests that the lakes are severely impaired and are in various stages of erosion. To improve the quality of stormwater of the streams within the watershed, a watershed restoration & conservation plan is now being developed by Monmouth University which will seek to improve water quality by stabilizing eroded stream banks, improving the habitat & quality of stormwater entering the lakes. The first stage in the development of the watershed restoration plan is a stream visual assessment of the entire Matawan watershed. Citizen volunteers are now being recruited to help collect data for the assessment that will begin in late March/early April. They will be given free training in visual assessment protocols and will be required to attend one of two trainings that will be offered prior to the start of the project. After training, volunteers will pair up with a partner and be assigned about a stream segment to walk for a one-time survey in March/April. Some of the work will include examining stream riparian buffer quality, documenting pollution inputs and areas of significant erosion, taking photos and GPS coordinates, assessing stream conditions, performing stream sampling using rapid bioassessment techniques and identifying storm drains. If you are interested in volunteering with this important monitoring effort, contact Vicky Allen, at or Councilwoman Debbie Buragina 732-566-3898 x602.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Quote for the day

"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds."

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Security At Matawan Borough Council Meeting

Anyone noticed the Matawan Police presence at the last few Borough Council Meetings? Our little Borough is low on Police manpower. Their skills as Professional Law Enforcement officials would serve the community better if they were out patrolling. Special uniformed law enforcement officials are a daunting site. While the meetings have gotten a little heated at times, never heard or saw anyone threatened from either side of the podium. Borough Council members who feel the necessity for personal security, should pay for it from their stipend. As Councilman Cannon has stated, "we have to watch our pennies." Personally, I never felt in harms way at any of the meetings. Let me state for the record, this is only my opinion.

Thursday, February 8, 2007

Quote for the day

"Bad officials are elected by good citizens who do not vote."

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Matawan Advocate

Matawan is in transition at this time. Attending Borough Council meetings has taught me a lot about our Borough and its politics. I was amused to read The Inside Clamdigger Blog and reply to Mr. Purcell's update as follows:

Were we at the same meeting? The vote was for the Bond Attorney Agreement. The appointment of Gibbons, Del Deo, Dolan, et al was made at the Jan. 1, 2007 meeting and voted on unanimously by the Council. The residents of Matawan want the best for our Borough. The spreading of misinformation can only hinder our progress. Be a part of the solution not the problem.