By Tony LaPorta - Westfield
I am writing to wholeheartedly endorse JoAnn Neylan for mayor of Westfield. JoAnn has conducted a positive, issues oriented, unifying campaign these last few months. She has the experience needed to hit the ground running on her first day in office. JoAnn has served as an elected member of our town council (2004-2019), as an assistant district attorney in Brooklyn, NY were she helped put sexual predators behind bars, and currently is a public defender in Mountainside, NJ.
I am very supportive of her determination to bring back our downtown, to end sweetheart over development deals (PILOTS) which threaten to remake Westfield into something we will not recognize, and to support and work with the Westfield Police to make us safer.
The PILOTS program, supported by Mayor Brindle, exempts the developers from school taxes for 30 years.
Mayor Brindle has declared Westfield a blighted community in order to hand out these kinds of sweetheart deals. Is Westfield, our beautiful town, a blighted community?
JoAnn has already met with business owners of our downtown and landlords to discuss issues that have not received an open hearing from our current mayor and her administration. JoAnn will bring our town together and work to make sure all issues are given a fair hearing.
JoAnn is against spending $18.2 million of our taxes on the Edison Field Project, which would install plastic turf fields among other things, which Mayor Brindle favors. Mayor Brindle, what happed to your pro environment Green Team approach to Westfield? JoAnn will look to improve our athletic fields through out the town, working with residents and sports leagues, which Mayor Brindle has not done.
I am also extremely concerned about the drastic spend down of our town’s surplus budget, using millions of taxpayers dollars for operational spending. Surplus tax dollars should only be used for capital spending. This is how NYC almost went bankrupt in the 1970’s, misusing its tax surplus. Mayor Brindle and her team on the town council can’t point to any significant addition to Westfield after spending close to $12 million of our surplus. Can you?
Mayor Brindle has never really understood what being Mayor is all about. She has been a separator not unifier of our town taking a top down, corporate approach to town governance. She refuses to directly answer resident’s questions at town council meetings, waiting until that session of the meeting is closed to make her comments, often not answering the question asked. No mayor of Westfield ever conducted themselves in such an undemocratic fashion.
She takes credit for paving our streets, when the fact is the utility companies must repave the street once they have opened them up for the work they do.
Mayor Brindle ended the popular bulky waste household pick up, which Cranford and Scotch Plains provided to it’s citizens this year. Why not Westfield?
Mayor Brindle moved our farmers market from the south side to the north side of town.
That pretty much ended what was a beneficial and successful farmers market. She was told by many that this was a mistake, however, she did what she wanted.
Why has Mayor Brindle set records for money spent for attorneys and consultants? What has she accomplished other than the placement of butterflies in our downtown?
I was the first Democrat elected to the Westfield Town Council from the north side in 1992, serving the First Ward.
I have seen mistake after mistake made by Mayor Brindle and her team for the last four years. I don’t want to see Westfield turned into “Shelleyville” the way Bedford Falls became Pottersville in the classic movie, “It’s A Wonderful Life”.
This election cannot be about party, it must be about what is best for Westfield today and all the tomorrows that follow. I urge every voter to support JoAnn Neylan for mayor along with town council candidates Amanda Como 1st Ward, Denise Garrett 2nd Ward, Shawn Mullen 3rd Ward, and James Restivo 4th Ward.
Let’s vote on November 2nd for leadership not salesmanship.