Tuesday, December 29, 2009

MORE ON COUNTY COMMISSIONERS

With John D'Amico's undying interest in renaming our state's 21 Boards of Chosen Freeholders, the vast editorial staff here at the Monmouth County Republican Blog thought we would look at what other states call their county legislatures.

County Commissioners may be found in Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia (Georgia has a phenomenon in some counties calles a "Sole Commissioner", where the governing body consists of only one commissioner - right up Flippy's alley.), Idaho, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, West Virginia and Wyoming.

Kentucky counties are governed by a Fiscal Court, consisting of a County Judge/Executive and either the Justices of the Peace or County Commissioners.

6 states; Arizona, California, Iowa, Mississippi, Virginia and Wisconsin call it the Board of Supervisors. Hawai'i used to have County Supervisors, but it now has County Mayors and County Councils. There are no municipal governments in Hawai'i. South Carolina has County Councils.

New York counties are run by a County Legislature, except the five counties making up New York City, which are merged with the city government.

Maryland has County Commissioners in 16 of 23 counties; the others are governed by a County Council. Illinois counties are governed by a County Board, whose members are called Board Members, except for Cook County, which calls them County Commissioners. And Nebraska has some counties with County Commissioners and others with a Board of Supervisors. Go figure!

Indiana has a system of two boards per county. The County Council is the legislative branch, and a Board of Commissioners, a collective executive body, carries out the legislation of the Council.

Two of our neighbor Delaware's three counties are governed by a County Council; the third is governed by a Levy Court, whose members are called Levy Court Commissioners. All of Delaware's counties once operated under the Levy Court system.

Vermont's counties exist as judicial vicinages only; other functions are performed by local or state government. Connecticut and Rhode Island have nothing; having abolished counties decades ago.

Alaska calls its counties Boroughs, and they are governed by a Borough Mayor and Borough Assembly.

Louisiana calls its counties Parishes, most of which are governed by a Police Jury. Others use the Council - President form (with the President equivalent to a County Executive and the Council as the legislative body), and the Council - Manager form (where an elected council appoints a manager).

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

HERE IT IS AGAIN

We've previously reported on how County Commissioner (neé Freeholder) John D'Amico, Jr. (a/k/a Flippy) wants to change the title of Freeholder to County Commissioner. Well, he's back at it.
Last night the Board of Chosen Freeholders, in a strict party line vote (with Director Barbara McMorrow coming down squarely on the left), approved a resolution "recommending substitution of the term 'Commissioner' for the term 'Freeholder' in Statutes pertaining to County Government".
This lame piece of left-wing, PC crap has some real doozies of reasons why the title should be changed. Here's the text:


RESOLUTION RECOMMENDING SUBSTITUTION OF THE TERM "COMMISSIONER" FOR THE TERM "FREEHOLDER" IN STATUTES PERTAINING TO COUNTY GOVERNMENT

WHEREAS, county government in New Jersey has grown in importance and scope, handling regional needs and problems in the areas of health, human services, law enforcement, regulatory compliance, court and jail facilities, emergency management, vocational and post-secondary education, solid waste disposal, recycling, water supply, storm water and wastewater management, environmental protection, libraries, parks, planning, consumer affairs, economic development, community development, fair housing, employment, agriculture, tourism, transportation, roads, bridges, public works, and many other areas.; and

WHEREAS, the citizens of New Jersey need to have a clearer understanding of the nature and functions of county government because far too many county residents do not realize that they are constituents of their Boards of Freeholders, and they are unaware of the services and programs provided by county government; and

WHEREAS, in Monmouth County, in addition to being mystified by the use of the phrase "Boards of Chosen Freeholders" to describe the governing body of the county, many county residents believe that they cannot vote for a candidate for "Freeholder" because they do not live in Freehold Township or in the Borough of Freehold; and

WHEREAS, the term "Freeholder" is a feudal anachronism, having originated in Medieval England to designate a free white male who owned an estate or land free and clear for an indefinite period of time, as opposed to a tenant or serf; and

WHEREAS, the term "Freeholder" is incompatible with our advanced democratic form of government that welcomes the participation of citizens who do not own real property, as well as women and persons of diverse racial and ancestral origin; and

WHEREAS, New Jersey is the only state that retains the title of "Freeholder", which is equivalent to "County Commissioner" in other states; and

WHEREAS, county government in New Jersey operates under the commission form of government, with each Freeholder being assigned responsibility for particular departments and functions;

NOW, THEREFORE, be it resolved that the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders urges the New Jersey Legislature and Governor to substitute the title of "Commissioner" for "Freeholder" in the statutes pertaining to county government in order to facilitate public understanding of the role and importance of county government and the responsibilities of its elected governing officials.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that a certified copy of this resolution shall be sent to Governor Jon S. Corzine, Governor-Elect Christopher J. Christie, the President of the New Jersey State Senate, the Speaker of the New Jersey Assembly, all State Legislators representing legislative districts in
Monmouth County, the New Jersey Association of Counties, and the Boards of Chosen Freeholders of all of the counties in New Jersey.


Really something, huh? First of all, the way you reform supposedly anachronistic institutions is not by changing the name, it is by changing the substance of the institution. As such, Monmouth County has elected African-Americans as well as women to the board; indeed, this and previous years have had female majorities. In colonial times, public officials were often subjected to a religious test to ensure that they belonged to the established, Protestant church. Monmouth's board has had both Jewish and Gentile as well as Protestant and Catholic members. Neighboring Burlington County recently had an African-American Republican Freeholder Director. Those living centuries ago would never have dreamed that institutions would change so.
Thus, the term "freeholder" has evolved from its original, narrow meaning to encompass the modern county governing bodies of today.
As to the resolution's assertion that "New Jersey is the only state that retains the title of 'Freeholder'", this blog has pointed out that Washington State also uses the "freeholder" title, albeit for a different office. So, if Flippy (who usually talks out of his ass) gets his way, only Washington State will have freeholders!
Republican Freeholders Lillian Burry and Rob Clifton were absolutely right to vote no on this drivel. With all that is going on these days, both the Board of Freeholders and the State Legislature have more important things to take up their time.
This crap should be repealed by the new board. The 2010 Organization Meeting on January 7th can't come fast enough.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

Governor-elect Chris Christie and Lt. Governor-elect Kim Guadagno roared through Monmouth County towns last week, from Aberdeen to West Long Branch, steamrollering the Bozo-coiffed, now lame-duck Gov. Jon Corzine in an overwhelming majority of towns. One of our own will be going to Trenton.
We are well aware of what this means locally insofar as the Sheriff's office goes. Kim vacates the office upon taking office as Lt. Governor and Christie must appoint her replacement, who must run for a full term in November.
We also know that Christie will appoint an entire new Cabinet, including a new Attorney General, who the governor-elect has said will be faced with the task of fighting political corruption. This will make John D'Amico's (Flippy) ethics board much less relevant.
Christie will also have the authority to appoint county prosecutors, including a successor to Monmouth County Prosecutor Luis Valentin, who's term expires in 2010. Valentin was appointed by then-Governor Dick Codey with input from Christie, but I believe that Christie would be looking to appoint his own person, one that will be more aggressive than Valentin on public corruption. This, too, will make moot a county ethics board, no matter how distinguished its members.
Another important position to open up during Christie's tenure is that of Commissioner of Registration / Superintendent of Elections, currently held by Democrat Hedra Siskel of Marlboro. Her term expires about 2012. This is an important office, as it oversees the actual registration of voters in the county, as well as the investigation and removal of ineligible voters from the roster. With groups like ACORN and its ilk operating in the urban areas of our great county, it is important that the right person is sitting in that office, working to prevent the corruption of voter fraud.
The transition will be an interesting, bracing time for Monmouth County Republicans. But that will continue beyond the transition, into the administration itself.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

THE INSPECTOR GENERAL RESURFACES; also A MALLET GAFFE

"...I'm afraid this could turn into a witchhunting tool."
...Freeholder Candidate John P. Curley

It is alive!
Just in time for Halloween, the Democrats on the Board of Freeholders have disinterred the Inspector General. Only this time they're not calling it the Inspector General.
The Asbury Park Press reported last week that the Democrats are proposing an "Ethics Board" to keep County Government in line, following the lead of Union County, which called theirs the "Economic Crime / Inspection Bureau".
The prime proponent of this is, yes, you guessed it, County Commissioner (neé Freeholder) John D'Amico, known affectionately as "Flippy". Citing two incidents involving employees, Flippy stressed the need for an ethics board, stating, "This county can not afford to have another Bid Rig".
Fine. But let's look at the two incidents. One was a case where an employee is alleged to have used a county computer for political purposes, and the other case alleges that an employee was removing one party's lawn signs from roadsides. Hardly rises to the level of Bid Rig, Flippy. Really. The county has a disciplinary code for such matters. I am sure that the two employees were disciplined or will be. Maybe even fired. I don't see what more Flippy wants, unless maybe the real issue here is that the employees dissed the Democrats? (This blog is not privy to any specific information in these cases.)
Looks like just another case of the Democrats trying to expand government.

County Commissioner (neé Freeholder) Amy Mallet, known affectionately as "Hammerhead", must really enjoy the taste of her own feet, because this past summer she stuck her foot in her mouth, calf deep. On the TV show Monmouth in Focus, a very chipper Mallet, speaking about the Monmouth County Fair, notes the "rides for the fat children".
I don't know what it is about the Democrats. Bad enough that the Bozo-coiffed Governor Jon Corzine used Republican candidate Chris Christie's weight as a campaign issue, but did Mallet really have to take a shot at the children? Really.
Just in case the county takes down the link, here's the text of what Mallet said on the video.
"You look around, first of all, the sun is shining, it's a beautiful day here, but rain or shine it's a great place to be, and it's a great place to be able to celebrate our county and all that it has to offer. And we've got folks here with crafts, 4-H; we've got rides for the fat children, for families; we've got something here for everyone. So I say everybody should just come out and enjoy the fair."
We've previously referred to Mallet as "Biden with boobs". Hey, if the shoe fits...

Sunday, October 25, 2009

ASBURY PARK PRESS ENDORSES CHRISTIE (And Other Random Stuff)

"Pulling the lever for (Chris Daggett) as a protest vote will only ensure four more years of Corzine and his Democratic administration. That must be avoided at all costs."

"...Christie is the only hope for change." Asbury Park Press editorial, Sunday, October 25, 2009.



Today's Press carries the editorial endorsement of Chris Christie for governor. It outlines the Bozo-coiffed Gov. Jon Corzine's many failures and foibles, as well as cautioning voters not to turn down the primrose path of Chris Daggett, which will only lead to the poison ivy of more Corzine.

The editorial also has some criticism of the Christie campaign and how it was run, however they make no bones about the fact that Christie is the best choice for the job. Still, we believe the Christie campaign is light years better run and more aggressive than that of the mild Doug Forrester, who blamed President George W. Bush for his defeat.


This editorial is informative, well-written and analytical, although Corzine may disagree. However, it would seem that the Press has more than one individual writing their editorials. Their gushing endorsement of Democrat Sean Byrnes for freeholer last Sunday would seem to have been written by cub reporter Bob Jordan or Mike Mangan more than any impartial editor. They claim that "Byrnes does not appear to be beholden to his party's political bosses", but the very fact that he is the Democratic nominee would put the lie to that claim.

Last December the Democrats were criticized for going to out of county political bosses to try to fill appointed county jobs. County Commissioner (neé Freeholder) John D'Amico, Jr., a/k/a "Flippy", was a prime mover and shaker on that fiasco. If not for his fellow Democrat, Director Barbara McMorrow reaching across the aisle and siding with Republicans on certain issues, things would have been a lot worse. And who could forget the dalliance with Gloucester County initiated by County Commissioner (neé Freeholder) Amy Mallet, a/k/a "Hammerhead". Gloucester County is led by none other than the double-dipping Democratic-State Senate Majority Leader-3rd District Senator-Freeholder Director-Ironworker Union Boss-Stephen Sweeney-Billygoat-Legs.

If Byrnes wins, Flippy will be the Director of the Board, and would provide a third reliable vote for D'Amico and his cronies. This must not happen.

Monday, October 05, 2009

THE DAGGETT FACTOR

This year's gubernatorial race looks to have become a three man race, featuring the Bozo-coiffed incumbent governor Jon S. Corzine, our GOP standardbearer Chris Christie and Independent candidate Christopher J. Daggett.
But is it a three man race?
In fact, there are no fewer than twelve gubernatorial candidates this fall. The other nine are Jason Cullen, Libertarian Kenneth Kaplan, perennial candidate Joshua Leinsdorf, Alvin Lindsay, Jr., David R. Meiswinkle, Socialist candidate Greg Pason, Kostas Petris, Gary T. Steele and Gary Stein. In addition, there are at least three declared write-in candidates, including "Uncle" Floyd Vivino.
Sooooooo, why all the attention on Daggett?
Having kicked back here at The Blog Cabin and watched last week's gubernatorial debate and seeing him in action, as well as hearing what the pundits and pundints have been saying since, it's obvious. Chris Christie has consistently run ahead of Corzine in the polls. Corzine has had little traction, but he can count on a solid base of support among minorities, public employee unions, academia and other liberal constituency groups who would elect a Cow Chip as long as it were running as a Democrat. This base, however, does not put Corzine over the finish line.
Corzine must either (1), win over Christie supporters or (2), divide the anti-Corzine vote among other candidates besides Christie. Remember that he need not get 50% + 1 to win, he just needs to have the most votes. If he can do that with 40% or even 35%, if that's more than Christie gets, Corzine's got four more years.
Since it is unlikely that Corzine will win over many Christie supporters he must divide the opposition and conquer the state. Now, we're not saying that Daggett entered the race at Corzine's behest, indeed it would seem that his Republican credentials are solid. He was involved in the gubernatorial campaigns of both Raymond H. Bateman and Tom Kean, Sr., as well as the presidential campaign of George H. W. Bush. He worked as a regional administrator of the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency in the Reagan Administration, and worked as DEP Commissioner under Gov. Kean.
Still, his campaign, while appearing to stay "above the fray" as a populist reformer, is essentially that of a liberal Democrat. Pro-choice and pro gay marriage, Daggett proposes to offset property taxes by "expanding" the sales tax to items now exempt. Now, that sounds good on the surface, but both Corzine and fellow Democrat Jim Florio already did that. (remember the Toilet Paper Tax?) And the State Income Tax, instituted by Democratic Governor Brendan Byrne, was supposed to offset, you guessed it, property taxes! If it ever did it doesn't now, we now have the highest property taxes in the nation and among the highest income tax rates to boot. So expanding the sales tax is a non-starter.
As a former DEP Commissioner, Daggett comes from (he ran it!) the very regulatory apparatus that has helped slow down New Jersey's business climate. No business, no jobs.
Daggett is the darling of the media. After the debate, many mainstream media pundits were singing the praises of Daggett, while continuing to call Christie "vague" even when he is specific on issues.
While one would hope that most if not all readers of this blog would support Christie, we must reiterate that whatever his personal reasons for running may be, Daggett has become a stalking horse for Corzine. Knowing that Daggett will not pull off a "Jesse Ventura" and win on an independent candidacy, we must be concerned that he will pull off a "Ross Perot" and act as a spoiler, ensuring the reelection of Corzine.
We must prevent the reelection of Corzine, not only for the sake of having a Republican governor, but also for the sake of stopping the Democratic überbosses like George Norcross and others from increasing their already immense power.
New Jersey depends on it.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

CONSOLIDATION OR CENTRALIZATION II


Sen. Sean Kean has written an article on the Bozo-coiffed Gov. Corzine and Education Commissioner Davy's attempt to centralize power. Click here!

Saturday, August 01, 2009

CONSOLIDATION OR CENTRALIZATION?


Various forms of municipal consolidation have been proposed by both parties for New Jersey as cost saving measures. These range from shared services between existing municipalities and school districts to the actual merging of small towns into large ones.
Back in May, DynamoBuzz ran a post which explored the issue in-depth. Roberto points out, "And if big means more efficient, explain why New Jersey’s biggest cities (Newark, Paterson, Jersey City, Elizabeth) spend twice as much on schooling, emergency services and government as smaller towns, many of which have volunteer fireman and low paid town officials?" A very valid point.
This past week, the Bozo-coiffed Governor Jon Corzine weighed in, opining that mergers would help eliminate corruption. A report on NJ 101.5's website states:

"Mr. Corzine said the primary source of corruption in New Jersey is too many layers of government, often referred to as "home rule." He said the best way to remove the possibilities for bribery and bid-rigging is for municipalities to consolidate and share services."

I fail to see the connection. The source of corruption is greedy people and lax or absent enforcement of the law. It doesn't matter whether a municipality is large or small. Indeed, would the merger of Jersey City and Hoboken have prevented anything? Would Sharpe James have been more honest if only Newark were larger, say if it absorbed East Orange, Irvington and Nutley? Probably not.
As to cost savings, the problem is property taxes, not the size of municipalities. Until property taxes are no longer the basis for municipal finance and especially school funding, New Jerseyans will continue to pay more. While the regionalization of school districts (and the elimination of overlapping "sending districts") is in many cases warranted, consolidation of municipalities could potentially be nothing more than a power grab by political bosses.
The Founding Fathers wanted to decentralize government as much as possible to avoid a repetition of the tyrrany they had fought. It is why they improved on the English model and went with three branches of government, with a bicameral Congress, all to diffuse the power of government and those running it. That is why we have states instead of one central government. It is why, on the state level, government was again diffused among the state, counties and municipalities. Each level originally had its functions and jurisdiction, and the system was set up to make the consolidation of power as difficult as possible.
Is there room for improvement here in New Jersey? There sure is. But the public should not fall for the panacea of "merge the towns and everything will be OK". While consolidation may be appropriate in certain cases, it is not a cure-all. Do not fall for the snake oil salesmen who would tell you that it is.
What is needed in New Jersey is to continue imprisoning corrupt politicians, and serious reform of our repressive property tax system.
Now that will bring savings.

Friday, July 31, 2009

COZY WITH THE UNIONS

D'ya really wanna go there, Flippy?
County Commissioner (neé Freeholder) John D'Amico, Jr. has accused Sheriff Kim Guadagno, candidate for Lt. Governor, of being too cozy with the unions.
The Honest Abe Research Foundation took a look at Sean Byrnes (Lil' Flippy), Democratic candidate for County Commissioner (neé Freeholder), who D'Amico backs, to find out how cozy he is.
So far, his only major contribution is:

$2,600.00 from the Local Union 400 PAC Fund, received on May 29th, 2009. This was filed as a 48 hour filing, received at ELEC by fax on June 9th. May 29th to June 9th. I guess in a party where up is down and down is up and wheeling isn't wheeling, 48 hours (2 days for us) can stretch out to nearly 2 weeks. Amazing.

NOTE: The Honest Abe Research Foundation will continue looking into Sean Byrnes. We told you it's not going away, Lil Flippy. See?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

NJ NEEDS CHRISTIE - GUADAGNO

The arrest last week of 44 offenders by the FBI strongly reinforces New Jersey's need for the team of Chris Christie and Kim Guadagno. An outgrowth of the big Operation Bid Rig, the latest roundup nabbed a motley bunch of legislators, mayors, supposed men of the cloth and various hangers on and ne'er do wells. They even arrested a man selling human body parts. And Community affairs Commissioner Joseph Doria, who was not arrested but did get to watch SWAT live as they searched his house, resigned/retired.
How does this reinforce the need for Christie and Guadagno?
Chris Christie, as U. S. Attorney, has overseen the conviction of over 130 corrupt politicians of both major parties. The reaction of members of each party is markedly different. Most Republicans react with revulsion and horror, condemning the thugs and political corruption in general. Democrats normally circle the wagons, often condemning the prosecutor. Indeed, many Jersey Democrats do just that when they whine about Christie prosecuting more Democrats than Republicans, as if it is supposed to be a 1:1 ratio.
"Political affirmative action" cannot be used when pursuing the corrupt. Where corruption festers, it must be rooted out, the party affiliation be damned. No quotas.
If the Democrats were really interested in fighting political corruption, and if they truly feel that Christie's prosecutions have been politically one-sided, they have had a remedy for years. In 2001, Jim McGreevey was elected governor. He appointed David Samson as Attorney General; after Samson left the office went downhill with such hacks as Peter Harvey and Zulima Farber. Remember the Norcross tape? Although many said that Stuart Rabner was an improvement, it turned out that he was only looking for a stepping-stone to the Chief Justiceship. Anne Milgram, the incumbent AG, although a competent attorney, has been a disappointment as her office continues to avoid prosecuting corrupt politicians.
The Democrats have also controlled all 21 County Prosecutors' offices for a number of years. Likewise, little or no corruption investigations have come out of those agencies. So if the Democrats feel that too many of their party or not enough Republicans have been prosecuted for political corruption, and that Christie has been too partisan, they could have solved the problem through the State Attorney General or the 21 County Prosecutors. They have not done so, which leads me to believe that it was just political posturing.
Whoever takes the oath of office as Governor and Lieutenant Governor in January 2010 will also appoint the State Attorney General. I believe it's a pretty safe bet that Christie will appoint a serious crimefighter like Sheriff Guadagno and himself. We already know what the Bozo-coiffed Jon Corzine will appoint. Same goes for the County Prosecutors.
So the choice is clear. Corzine - Weinberg (pronounced WHINE-burg) and more of the same, or Christie - Guadagno and a commitment to fighting political corruption.
Real change begins with changing governors.

NOTE: The Honest Abe Research Foundation is still looking into Sean Byrnes. It's not going away, Lil Flippy. You didn't think we forgot, did you?

Friday, July 24, 2009

CORZINE PICKS WEINBERG

The Bozo-coiffed Governor Jon Corzine has named a veteran Trenton insider, liberal State Senator Loretta Weinberg (pronounced WHINE-burg), D-Bergen as his running mate for Lieutenant Governor. She would be on the ballot opposite Kim Guadagno.
We don't know how well Corzine is going to hold up with all this "ethnicity". You see, back in 2000, when he was running for the U. S. Senate, Corzine said some really dumb things. Bidenesque things. Bad things.
It seems Corzine, while courting Italian-American voters, was introduced to an attorney named David Stein. Corzine is alleged to have said, ''He's not Italian, is he? Oh, I guess he's your Jewish lawyer who is here to get the rest of you out of jail.''
There's more. That same year, Corzine not only stuck his foot in his mouth, he stuck his whole leg in up to the hip, if you can believe that. Upon being introduced to an Italian-American man who was in the construction business, Corzine blurted, "Oh, you make cement shoes!" (Read the New York Times article here!)
The political left is fraught with ignorant people; Corzine used a spokesman to apologize.
Corzine's opponent, Chris Christie, is not a Jewish lawyer, but he is an Italian-American one. And he isn't known for getting crooks out of jail, rather he built a solid reputation for putting them in jail. Lots of them. No cement shoes here either, Governor, just steel bracelets.
Corzine has a well-deserved reputation for nastiness. Just look at the garbage his campaign has been churning out so far. Assuming Boss George Norcross doesn't replace Corzine on the ticket, the pressure could really get to him. He could then slip and say something stupid like back in 2000.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

FLIPPY SPEAKS OUT ON GUADAGNO

Yesterday (July 21, 2009), County Commissioner (nee Freeholder) John D'Amico, Jr., a/k/a "Flippy", expressed his opinion about Sheriff Kim Guadagno's bid for Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey. Flippy took the Sheriff to task on her dealing with public employee unions.
It was reported in the Asbury Park Press.
Here are the pertinent parts of the article:


D'amico said county officials decided in January to ask two-dozen unions to accept wage freezes that would prevent job losses, but Guadagno "essentially sabotaged the county's plan as it related to the unions within the Sheriff's office and made constructive dialogue with other groups virtually impossible," he said.
"For instance, there was a group within the Sheriff's Office about to accept the wage freeze, and she essentially talked them out of doing it. All this spilled over to the other unions," D'Amico said.
A Sheriff's Department spokeswoman denied that Guadagno persuaded a union to turn down an agreement. "That's just nonsense," said the spokeswoman, Cynthia Scott.
At a March 12 freeholder board meeting attended by hundreds of union members, Guadagno was openly defiant to the freeholders, telling them layoffs would lead to overtime costs that would outweigh the savings.
"I'm not going to stop serving warrants on violent criminals, and I'm not going to turn the lights out at the jail because I have fewer officers. I'm just going to run the department on overtime," Guadagno said at the meeting.
D'Amico says he recalls those comments vividly.
"She threatened that jail overtime would more than offset the savings. That was the threat clearly. She grandstanded at the public meeting. In fact, she turned her back on the freeholders, turned to the union members, and said essentially, 'You're right and the freeholders are wrong.' This was while we were trying in good faith to preserve as many jobs as possible," D'Amico said.
According to county figures, overtime within the Monmouth County Sheriff's Office has jumped 40 percent for the first two months since the county's work force was reduced by layoffs.
However, the overtime budgetfor the Sheriff's Office, year to date, is up only 3.6 percent. Guadagno had said the overtime numbers will fall as the department adjusts to the reduced manpower.


Okay, first of all, we know that D'Amico talks out of his ass half the time; I mean, he is known as Flippy, isn't he? He'll say anything to get press.
Secondly, The Monmouth County Republican Blog has reliable sources imbedded deep inside the Hall of Records, and we don't rely on Flippy to provide factual information.
Sheriff Guadagno had consistently attempted to find some common ground between the unions and the freeholders, and in that she clearly demonstrated statesmanlike behavior.
At the meeting in question, Guadagno pleaded with union members to accept the wage freeze so as to avoid layoffs. At the same time, far from being defiant to the freeholders, she simply stated that, for public safety reasons, certain levels of staffing are required to operate a jail and to serve arrest warrants, and that to provide those staffing levels, the Sheriff's department would rely upon overtime. If D'Amico is upset with the unions for not listening to the Sheriff and accepting the freeze, he should be equally upset with himself and his fellow Democratic freeholders in not heeding the Sheriff's warning that overtime would exceed savings.
At the same meeting, it was actually D'Amico who was castigated for interfering in the labor situation in the Sheriff's Department. We will also point out that D'Amico, who seems to think it's okay for prisons to be run on reduced staffing (maybe he feels that prison gangs are just a celebration of diversity), is also a disciple of the Union County Democrats. That's Union County, folks, where jailbreaks are not out of the question.
Finally, we will point to the third paragraph in the Press article, which says, "...Democratic Freeholder John D'Amico, Jr. said Guadagno was too cozy with the unions..."
Too cozy with the unions? Do you really want to go there, Flippy? Well, do you?

INSPECTOR GENERAL UPDATE

Tina Renna at The County Watchers has an update on the Union County Inspector General. Read about it here!
Is this what John D'Amico, a/k/a "Flippy" has in mind for Monmouth County?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

STILL FLIPPIN'



"...D'Amico, who has now completely reversed his May support of the Red Bank route..."
The Asbury Park Press, Wednesday July 14, 2009, article by Larry Higgs.

He's doing it again.
County Commissioner (neé Freeholder) John D'Amico, Jr. has flip-flopped again. He can't stop it. It's what he does. It's how he earned the sobriquet, "Flippy". Keeping track of this one is like watching a tennis match.
When he's not busy attempting to create new county bureaucracies, Flippy is wasting no time doing what he does best: flip-flopping.
Last week, at the freeholders' meeting, D'Amico not only voted yes on the reappointment of County Engineer Joseph Ettore, he heaped praise upon Ettore like you wouldn't believe. Now, we believe that reappointing Ettore is a good thing, and his conduct is certainly praiseworthy. He is a professional who has served the taxpayers of Monmouth County well.
Our criticism of D'Amico stems from the fact that in spite of his praise of Ettore, he and County Commissioner (neé Freeholder) Amy Mallet (a/k/a Hammerhead) attempted to replace him with a political crony. Their scheme fell through when their fellow Democrat, Director Barbara McMorrow, refused to participate, giving Republican freeholders Lillian Burry and Rob Clifton the votes needed to reappoint Ettore.
Flippy flipped again in an article in yesterday's Asbury Park Press, in which he completely reversed his stand supporting passenger rail service from Manchester to Red Bank. D'Amico purports to be something of an expert on transportation issues, but he's all over the page on this one. I mean, Jim Howard he's not! It was only in May that he supported the rail line coming into Red Bank, and now he opposes it.
He was for it before he was against it!
John D'Amico stands to become Freeholder Director if the Democrats retain the majority on the Board after the November election. They would actually solidify their control because Sean Byrnes (a/k/a Lil' Flippy) is not as willing to step across the aisle as McMorrow, and would provide a much-needed third vote for Flippy and Hammerhead. This would allow the Trenton Democrats and the Union County gang total control of Monmouth County.
The prospect of Director D'Amico is a scary one. This is a dangerous, vindictive, fickle man. He must be stopped. John D'Amico would make a better weathervane than a freeholder. Or let him stand out in front of a cigar shop or something. That's why it's imperative that we take back the majority on the Board of Chosen Freeholders this year.

COUNTY JOB OPENING!

At last week's freeholders' meeting, County Commissioner John D'Amico (a/k/a Flippy) announced that the county was taking applications for the position of In-House County Counsel. The job announcement is on the county's website. This three-year appointment would replace the current outside curmudgeonly county counsel, Malcolm V. Carton.
John P. Curley, our GOP standardbearer in this fall's freeholder race, addressed the board and expressed concern that creating a full-time legal department would potentially evolve into a new layer of bureaucracy. He added that creating new county government jobs would be inappropriate in light of the recent layoff of many county employees.
Here's the announcement from the county website.

Job Details

Title: In-House County Counsel

Hours/Week:
Title Code:

  • Starting Salary: DOQ - up to $150,000 Annually

    Job Description and Requirements:
    •In-House County Counsel

    The County Counsel serves as the chief legal advisor to the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders on a broad range of subject matters. The ideal candidate will be a trusted legal advisor with a professional demeanor who will be proactive in bringing issues to the Board’s attention, be creative and have good judgment, and be able to multi-task and function effectively in a large government environment with shifting priorities.

    This position is in the unclassified service under the NJ Statutes Annotated [40A:9-43] for a three year term.

    Salary DOQ – up to $150,000.

    Essential job functions may include any of the following but are not limited to:

    ◦meets with and advises the Board of Freeholders with respect to both legal advise and representations at all Freeholder workshop, executive and public meetings;
    ◦provides timely and comprehensive responses and recommendations regarding requests from the Board , individual Board members or the County Administrator;
    ◦adheres to the highest ethical standards in the discharge of all responsibilities;
    ◦monitors and supervises support legal staff’;
    ◦researches, interprets and applies laws, court decisions, statutes, ordinances and other legal authorities for use in the preparation of legal opinions and briefs;
    ◦assists the Board of Freeholders in the development and implementation of Board policies, regulations and operating programs as needed;
    ◦may represent the County in civil litigation, including preparation and trial of cases before courts and administrative agencies;
    ◦performs other related duties as assigned.
  • Education & Experience:
    Juris Doctorate Degree with a minimum of 10 years of experience in the practice of law including substantial responsible experience as Counsel for a public jurisdiction.

    A Certificate of Good Standing from the New Jersey Board of Bar Examiners

    Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

    ◦Knowledge of applicable County and State statutes, codes and procedures.
    ◦Knowledge of methods and procedures required to provide legal services to governing body of a public entity.
    ◦Knowledge of managing a legal department of a city, county, or state department or federal agency, or a law firm or corporate law office involved in civil litigation.
    ◦Ability to conduct legal research and draft legal documents.
    ◦Ability to conduct effective presentations.
    ◦Ability to resolve problems and make decisions.
    ◦Ability to use and communicate by means of computer network systems necessary.
    Candidates must demonstrate the knowledge, skills, and abilities required in managing a legal department, the management of litigation in a cost-effective manner, and the technical and administrative direction of 2 in-house attorneys and outside special counsels.

    Forward resume application in confidence to:

    Mr. Robert M. Czech
    Hall of Records
    1 East Main St.
    Freehold, NJ 07728

    How to apply:•Individuals will only be considered if they possess the minimum requirements listed above.
    All applicants: In order to be considered for a job opening, an Application for Employment must be completed for each position. Resumes may be attached but are not considered as substitution for a fully completed job application form. E-mailed or faxed applications are not accepted.
    Mail: Completed applications referencing the job title code on the application to: County of Monmouth, Personnel Department, 1 East Main Street, Freehold, NJ 07728
    Phone: To request a Job Application be mailed to you, call 732-431-7300
    In Person: Monday – Friday 8:30 am – 4:30 pm

Saturday, July 11, 2009

HOWELL BACK TO NORMAL

Things in Howell had been pretty quiet until recently.
A group of independents, primarily a Republican faction (with some Dems) which opted to bypass the primary process, has held all seats on the Township Council. This group has had the backing of the Howell Democrats for the last few election cycles.
The honeymoon is over.
It appears that there has been a falling out between Mayor Robert Walsh and local Democratic Boss Steve Morlino. Walsh opines that Morlino is miffed that he was not considered for the council vacancy that occured when Walsh was elected mayor. Morlino denies this.
Although this is normally an off year in Howell politics, there will be two unexpired seats up for grabs this November: Walsh's vacancy, and that opened by the resignation of Councilman Michael Howell.
Morlino and the Democrats apparently believe that it is time to run candidates again, as evidenced by this posting on A Better Howell NJ:

With the recent resignation of Council Member Howell from the town council, I am looking for a strong 2nd candidate to round out the Democratic ticket in November. Anyone interested in running should send me a resume by July 15th. We need to make some very necessary changes in the direction Howell is being taken lately. One party (Independents) control is not working. We need to balance out the field. We are seeing the worst managment in Howell in the last 25 years. The I's are a disaster.
E-mail or phone me if you are interested.
Steve

Coupled with the Dems' falling out with the Independents is what appears to be at least a partial rapprochement between members of the Walsh group and the local Republican organization, for example, Mike Howell's support of a candidacy of former Mayor Joe DiBella for freeholder back in February. (DiBella never announced.)
Sooooo... we may be in for a rollicking, swashbuckling ride in Howell this fall. Just a note to the local GOP: Stick together, work together, win together.
Victory in the county could hinge on Howell.

Friday, July 10, 2009

SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT ACCEPTED INTO 287 (g)


"If you are an illegal alien and commit a crime in Monmouth County, you will be identified, turned over to federal authorities and deported if appropriate."
...Sheriff Kim Guadagno

We have covered illegal immigration and Sheriff Kim Guadagno's yeoman efforts to do her part to combat it here in Monmouth County. It went out over the Associated Press Wire Service this evening that the Monmouth County Sheriff's Department is one of 11 law enforcement agencies nationwide and two in New Jersey that have been accepted into the 287 (g) program.
The sheriff has kept a very important campaign promise.
If you really want to read the Asbury Park Press's expurgated version, in which they actually edit out all references to Guadagno, click here!
UPDATE!!! (Saturday, July 11th) The Press has had cub reporter Bob Jordan rewrite the article for today's paper. The sheriff is in it now. Click here!
UPDATED UPDATE!!!! Alyssa Passeggio has a great post this morning on the subject. Read All About It here!

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

FREEHOLDERS FOUND ON WEST COAST!

While researching Freeholder John D'Amico's (Flippy) attempts to morph the Board of Chosen Freeholders into a Board of County Commissioners, the Honest Abe Research Foundation found some unrelated yet interesting and intriguing information.
Washington State has Freeholders!
That's right. Now, they don't run the counties, no, Washington has County Commissioners for that. Washington's freeholders are more like our Charter Commissions, when a county or municipality is looking to change its charter. Still, this is kind of like finding new planets revolving around a distant star.
Here are the relevant passages from the Washington State Constitution:

SECTION 4 COUNTY GOVERNMENT AND TOWNSHIP ORGANIZATION.
...Any county may frame a "Home Rule" charter for its own government subject to the Constitution and laws of this state, and for such purpose the legislative authority of such county may cause an election to be had, at which election there shall be chosen by the qualified voters of said county not less than fifteen (15) nor more than twenty-five (25) freeholders thereof, as determined by the legislative authority, who shall have been residents of said county for a period of at least five (5) years preceding their election and who are themselves qualified electors, whose duty it shall be to convene within thirty (30) days after their election and prepare and propose a charter for such county...
(and)
...Notwithstanding the foregoing provision for the calling of an election by the legislative authority of such county for the election of freeholders to frame a county charter, registered voters equal in number to ten (10) per centum of the voters of any such county voting at the last preceding general election, may at any time propose by petition the calling of an election of freeholders. The petition shall be filed with the county auditor of the county at least three (3) months before any general election and the proposal that a board of freeholders be elected for the purpose of framing a county charter shall be submitted to the vote of the people at said general election, and at the same election a board of freeholders of not less than fifteen (15) or more than twenty-five (25), as fixed in the petition calling for the election, shall be chosen to draft the new charter. The procedure for the nomination of qualified electors as candidates for said board of freeholders shall be prescribed by the legislative authority of the county, and the procedure for the framing of the charter and the submission of the charter as framed shall be the same as in the case of a board of freeholders chosen at an election initiated by the legislative authority of the county.In calling for any election of freeholders as provided in this section, the legislative authority of the county shall apportion the number of freeholders to be elected in accordance with either the legislative districts or the county commissioner districts, if any, within said county, the number of said freeholders to be elected from each of said districts to be in proportion to the population of said districts as nearly as may be.

SECTION 10 INCORPORATION OF MUNICIPALITIES.
...Any city containing a population of ten thousand inhabitants, or more, shall be permitted to frame a charter for its own government, consistent with and subject to the Constitution and laws of this state, and for such purpose the legislative authority of such city may cause an election to be had at which election there shall be chosen by the qualified electors of said city, fifteen freeholders thereof, who shall have been residents of said city for a period of at least two years preceding their election and qualified electors, whose duty it shall be to convene within ten days after their election, and prepare and propose a charter for such city...

SECTION 16 COMBINED CITY-COUNTY.
...Registered voters equal in number to ten (10) percent of the voters of any such county voting at the last preceding general election may at any time propose by a petition the calling of an election of freeholders. The provisions of section 4 of this Article with respect to a petition calling for an election of freeholders to frame a county home rule charter, the election of freeholders, and the framing and adoption of a county home rule charter pursuant to such petition shall apply to a petition proposed under this section for the election of freeholders to frame a city-county charter, the election of freeholders, and to the framing and adoption of such city-county charter pursuant to such petition...

Interesting, isn't it? I wonder whether the title pops up anywhere else in the country. Just think, if Flippy had had his way, Washington may have been the only state in the Union with freeholders!

NOTE: The Honest Abe Research Foundation is still looking into Sean Byrnes. It's not going away, Lil Flippy.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

HERE IT IS

Some readers may wonder why we keep calling Flippy D'Amico and the other Democratic freeholders, "county commissioners". It's because Flippy wanted to be called that. He brought it up at the September 11, 2008 Work Session, and it seemed to have fallen flat. (insert rimshot) So, we thought you, our readers, might want to see it for yourselves, from the minutes of the board itself.
Here it is, campers:

WORK SESSION AGENDA ITEM # 7-DISCUSSION RE: FREEHOLDER TITLE CHANGE
Freeholder D'Amico brought up the idea of changing the title of "freeholder". He explained why he was undertaking this effort in asking the Board to endorse a resolution for submission to the legislature to change the title keeping in mind that other states have County Commissioners. Director Burry read a statement opposing a change in the title. Freeholder McMorrow supported Freeholder D'Amico's request and stated that although school children are well versed it appears that the term "freeholder" is misunderstood by the general public. Freeholder Clifton indicated that we should keep the title as it allows for the opportunity to educate the public. He added that although the County demographics have changed the title "freeholder" is not as elitist an acronym as it was in the past. In fact, we have a number of women on the Board, we have our first woman Director, and we have had an African-American freeholder. Freeholder Clifton indicated however that he would raise the issue at a future NJAC Board of Directors meeting and get a feeling for the position of that organization. Freeholder Barham stated that sometimes people call them worse names than freeholder. He further indicated that the Board should concentrate on more meaningful issues such as property tax relief and effective state government. Following the discussion Freeholder D'Amico concluded that the resolution would not be acted upon tonight but felt it would be appropriate for it to go to NJAC for review.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

AND MORE!

Friday we wrote about Independence Day. Today, The Washington Times has a great editorial about the Declaration of Independence. Read it here!

Friday, July 03, 2009

INDEPENDENCE DAY

On this Independence Day 2009, let's stop and reflect on the events of 233 years ago. We all know that the Declaration of Independence was ratified on July 4th, 1776, but that was actually a result of the Resolution of Independence approved by the Second Continental Congress on July 2nd. This resolution had been introduced by Richard Henry Lee (VA) several weeks before; the vote was delayed while delegates worked up support for independence from the Britain. It is believed that the signing of the Declaration was not completed until August 2nd.
Regardless of the details, we all know the major result: Great Britain was defeated by the 13 Colonies; the Colonies, as the United States of America, would go on to become not only a major world power militarily, but an example of freedom, democracy and prosperity that would rise to any challenge. A shining city on a hill.
Which makes one wonder... If today's politicians were running the Revolution, would we all be driving on the left today? Or, worse, would European powers like Spain or Bonaparte's France opportunistically step in and carve up the fledgeling USA? We all know that the political leaders back then, like today, had to drum up support for their views. In spite of that, it is said that only about one third of Americans actually supported the Independence movement, with another third opposing it and the rest ambivalent.
Knowing the way our Congress operates today, would a Nancy Pelosi in 1776 make a trip to London to meet with George III? Would a Harry Reid whine that the Revolutionary War was "lost"? Would the Declaration be weighed down by innumerable social program amendments and pork projects? A post-road to nowhere? Would it even be called a Declaration of Independence, or the "Omnibus" something or other? Or would the Continental Congress degenerate into a dysfunctional body loaded with egos, as the New York State Senate has?
These are all speculative "what ifs". Obviously, the Founding Fathers were all human, and flawed like the rest of us. They all made mistakes. Some passionately hated each other.
But, in spite of that, they got it done.
They were the right people at the right time. A few years later, the French Revolution overthrew an absolute monarchy. After the idealism wore off things went horribly wrong, and a few years later France was under the thumb of the dictator Napoleon Bonaparte. We should thank our lucky stars that something like that didn't happen here.
Today, like 1776, we need the right people for our time, in Washington, Trenton and Freehold.
Have a Happy 4th!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

ABOUT THAT INSPECTOR GENERAL...

(This will) "be used for two things: as a weapon against internal enemies, and as a public relations tool."
...Tina Renna, Union County Watchdog Association



Remember when John "Flippy" D'Amico wanted to create a new county Department of the Inspector General? And remember that he said that it wouldn't cost the taxpayers anything because he would fill the post with a retiree who wouldn't be paid? (he really wants us to believe that, too!)
Remember how the Democrats on the Board of Freeholders are being led from outside Monmouth County, particularly Union County?
Well, Union County recently created such a department, and guess what, they're claiming that it won't cost their long-suffering taxpayers anything! We actually almost missed this one because, you see, Union County didn't call it an Inspector General. They're calling it the "Economic Crime/Inspection Bureau". Clever. Read the Star-Ledger article here!
Whatever the name, don't for a moment think this is a dead issue here in Monmouth County. No, nonono no! It is simply dormant. Flippy hopes to have Sean Byrnes (Lil' Flippy) join the Board this election. In the event this happens, D'Amico not only becomes Director of the Board, he also gains a third solid yes vote for all his risky schemes. Including the Inspector General. We as Republicans cannot let this happen. We must work to ensure that John P. Curley defeats Lil' Flippy and returns the majority to the GOP.

Read the Top 10 reasons Union County created an in-house Audit Bureau.

Why all the Union County stuff? Because under the Democrats, Monmouth County is a mere vassal of Union County and its dictatorial Prince Joseph the Cryan. Therefore, what happens there is of high relevance to what happens here.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

LITTLE FLIPPY

As our readers know, we have affectionate names for Democratic politicians. Freeholder Director Barbara McMorrow is "Figurehead", and freeholders John D'Amico and Amy Mallet are known as "Flippy" and "Hammerhead", respectively. Their losing running mates include "Silent Steve" Schueler and "Very Silent" Glenn Mason; it may be the very silence of these individuals that cost them the election in the first place.
What to call Sean Byrnes?
That took some thought. We finally settled on a working title of "Little Flippy". Why? Well, both Byrnes and D'Amico are lawyers. D'Amico was a judge, Byrnes wants to be a judge. Byrnes looks like a young D'Amico, and like D'Amico, drones on and on and on and on and on...
So, until and unless Byrnes demonstrates the necessity for another nickname, the Vast Editorial Staff here at the Monmouth County Republican Blog dub him,

Little Flippy.

NOTE: The Honest Abe Research Foundation is still looking into this guy. This isn't going away.

Monday, June 08, 2009

BYRNES' FINANCES

The Honest Abe Research Foundation has been given the task of investigating Middletown Township Committeeman Sean Byrnes, this year's Democratic candidate for County Commissioner (neé Freeholder). Although they've only just begun to scratch the surface, Byrnes' ELEC reports are interesting.
On his primary '07 report, we have a $2,500.00 contribution from Upendra J. Chivukula for Assembly, made on June 4th, 2007, the day before the primary. Chivukula, a Democrat, represents convicted felon John Lynch's old district. He gained notoriety in 2007 for proposing a bill to allow illegal aliens to pay in state tuition.
In the general election, Byrnes maintained two sets of campaign books, one where he filed as a single candidate account, and the second where he filed jointly with his running mate, Janet Moscuzza.
There's not much activity shown in the single account, but the joint account is active, as one would expect in a large town like Middletown.
Pallone for Congress gave $2,500.00 on October 13th. Other contributors include the PRC Management Co. of West Long Branch, developers, who gave $1,000.00 on October 22nd. PRC is also a known supporter of John "Flippy" D'Amico. We're researching whether they were or are planning a project in Middletown where they may have desired Byrnes' influence.
The Wall Township based Local Union 400 PAC Fund gave $2,000.00 on October 31st, and $2,500.00 on November 19th, for a total of $4,500.00.
The '07 Byrnes Campaign finances seem relatively mild as Dem campaigns go, but remember this was a local race. In reality, his campaign finances were a pastiche of the above contributors, with large donations from both the Middletown Democratic Executive Committee and the Middletown Township Democratic Club, with both Byrnes' single campaign account and one from Moscuzza thrown in for good measure.
As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, we've only begun to scratch the surface with this guy. I don't know what it is with these Democrats from Middletown. This is not going away.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

FORE!!! NEVERMORE?

We all know about County Commissioner (neé Freeholder) Amy "Hammerhead" Mallet, who wanted Monmouth County to accept juvenile detainees from Gloucester County. Our sources, imbedded deep in the Hall of Records, have uncovered another Mallet scheme, one which has heretofore never seen the light of day.
Not content with just attempting to slash the county Open Space tax, Amy Mallet wanted to sell at least one county golf course. Fortunately, saner minds prevailed before this could become a costly debacle, but it's true.
Where would she get such an idea? Well, in order to explain the actions of this year's Democratic freeholder majority, one must look outside Monmouth County and this is no exception. It seems this year the Democratic freeholder monopoly in Union County actually closed Oak Ridge Golf Course in Clark Township!
The County Watchers has run a series of interesting posts on this topic; they are linked below:

County Budget Hearings to Begin this Saturday, Gee Who Knew? by Tina Renna
Budget Cutting Course, by John Bury
Meeting the Real Bosses to get Action, by John Bury
As Posted on PolitickerNJ, by Patricia Quattrocchi
If it Looks Like a Golf Course, Why Not Play Golf? by County Watchers
Emails to County go Unanswered, by County Watchers
Art Imitates Life In Union County, by Tina Renna
As Published on PolitickerNJ.com, by Patricia Quattrocchi
Don't Try This at Home, Folks. by Tina Renna
Can You Close a Public Golf Course Like That? by John Bury

Imagine how dangerous a Democratic monopoly would be here in Monmouth County, under the directorship of John "Flippy" D'Amico and his Union County handlers!
November can't come soon enough!

Thursday, May 07, 2009

HE'S BAAAAAAAAACK!!!

Yesterday (Wednesday), Art Gallagher over at More Monmouth Musings wrote about Codey.org, a weBSite purported to support the drafting of former Gov. Dick Codey to replace the Bozo-coiffed Gov. Jonathan Stevens Corzine on the ballot. Art found that the site is linked to none other than Union County's own diminutive, goose-stepping, oompaloompaesque publisher, James J. Devine.
We decided to put the Honest Abe Research Foundation to work on this.
A look at the weBSite shows that it is "a project of the Central Jersey Democratic Leadership Committee", a PAC led by Devine, and that it is "Paid for by CJDLC". The CJDLC's main weBSite still advertises tickets for the PAC's "Inaugural Ball" to be held back in January at the Grand Marquis in Old Bridge Township.
A look at ELEC shows that the CJDLC has not filed a report since the third quarter of 2005. Before that, their reporting history was spotty at best.
Just as a little background, Devine and his PAC have marched to not only a different drummer, but a different tuba and glockenspiel player too.
Back in '05, Devine ran a blog supporting the woeful Democratic assembly candidates in the 13th District. That same year, he was responsible for a hate weBSite called HandlinThompson.org. As a part of his fundraising, Devine wrote on the site, "Donations will be deposited into the personal bank account of this website's owner/operator and will be used to defray expenses for research and reporting about the corrupt politicians to whom this site is dedicated. If funding reaches the level required for disclosure under New Jersey law, a political committee will be established specifically for that purpose. Until then, anyone who wishes to know the names of any or all contributors needs simply to ask."
His personal bank account? Gadzooks! Hold on campers, there's more.
They once claimed that the CJDLC was not subject to ELEC reporting as it was organized as a 527 fund, and by June of 2006, the PAC's treasurer, Charles Betancourt, was pleading not guilty to embezzling $53,238.00 from the CJDLC. Strangely, no Charles Betancourt appears in the state Judiciary's Promis/Gavel Public Access system. You would think that they would file ELEC reports after that bit of trouble, but noooooooo.
We know that they began 2005 with a balance of $2,500.54 in the bank, and that they raised $122,950.00 up to the end of the third quarter, and spent $102,628.34 during the same period, leaving a balance of $22,822.20 on September 30, 2005. Then, nothing. No reports for the fourth quarter of 2005 through the first quarter of 2009. Soooooo, we don't know what happened to the $22,822.20, where it went, or what they raised and spent during the past 3+ years. Did Betancourt get any of it, or was his embezzlement earlier than that? Is he still the treasurer?
We don't know how much they raised on the Inaugural event this past January, or what the overhead was. The Codey.org site is set up for fundraising, but that would show up on the second quarter '09 report, which is not due until June 15th, if they see fit to even bother to file it. The Codey.org weBSite, however, was actually created back in 2005, and updated this past February; any expenses incurred would presumably be reportable on a hypothetical first quarter report, if there was one.
The contributors reported back in 2005 are the typical Democratic cast of characters; a lot of developers, some lawyers, and the ever-present CME Associates principals. Recipients of the CJDLC's largese include several Democratic campaigns on the state and local level. We will list them in a subsequent post.
The Central Jersey Democratic Leadership Committee is notable for its weirdness. Devine is never far from controversy. Potential contributors would be wise to stay away from the whole gooey mess.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

DINNER MEETINGS TO RETURN?

Tina Renna of The County Watchers had an interesting post back in March where she reported that Union County Prosecutor Theodore J. Romankow defended the all-Democratic Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders' Sunshine-Law violating dinner meetings.
Since Monmouth County's Democratic freeholders take direction from the Union County Democrats, and since it was a previous Democratic board which initiated the practice back in the 70's, and since County Commissioner (neé Freeholder) John "Flippy" D'Amico participated with much gusto in the dinners, will they return here in Monmouth?

Will New Jersey Elect a Pro-Life Catholic Governor?

by Deal W. Hudson, InsideCatholic.com
4/27/09
As of a few days ago, a pro-life Catholic held the lead in the New Jersey governor's race. Chris Christie has been steadily polling ahead of the current Democratic governor, Jon Corzine, and the other Republican candidate for the nomination.
Christie's eleven point lead over Corzine, and 25 point lead over his closest GOP challenger, is remarkable in the post-Obama political climate when pro-life candidates, like Christie, are supposed to be passé.
The 47-year old Christie, viewed as a moderate candidate, has been married for 23 years to his wife, Mary Pat; they have four children, two boys and two girls, ages 5 to 15. In New Jersey 42 percent of voters are Catholic, but the Republicans haven't nominated a Catholic for governor since 1973.
Whether New Jersey Catholics will rally around a candidate like Christie remains to be seen. The last Catholic governor of New Jersey was James E. McGreevey who received a majority of the Catholic vote in spite of policy positions that were mostly antithetical to the Church. McGreevey beat a candidate, Bret Schundler, who was pro-life and socially conservative, but Protestant in a largely Catholic state. When a New Jersey columnist asked McGreevey to comment on the fact that his politics were out of line with most Irish Catholic voters, "McGreevey laughed the question off."
You might assume from the reputation and recent history of New Jersey politics that there must be something questionable about Christie's pro-life position that explains his present popularity. His GOP opponent, Steve Lonegan, in fact, has tried to label him "pro-choice," but Congressman Chris Smith (R-NJ) has given Christie his "seal of approval," which for movement pro-lifers will be the end of the argument.
Christie was nominated in 2001 by George W. Bush as the U.S. attorney general for the District of New Jersey and took office in January 2002. During his six years in office he gained the reputation as something of a corruption-buster, having won convictions or guilty pleas from 130 public officials, both Republican and Democrat. Christie did not lose a single case.
One example of his successful prosecution was that of Sharpe James, the former mayor of Newark. James was found guilty of conspiring to sell nine city properties to his mistress, Tamika Riley, who resold them for hundreds of thousands in profit.
After the verdict, Gov. Corzine, a political ally of James, commented, "It's unfortunate for the citizens of Newark;" adding, "I find it sad that any of the good work produced by Mayor James will get lost or overshadowed by his conviction."
Corzine is vulnerable, in part, because he is viewed as someone who has been associated with various scandals -- others and his own -- during the entirety of his tenure as governor. Another vulnerability stems from his position on life issues. Corzine made headlines a few months ago when New Jersey filed a lawsuit to force Catholic hospitals to perform abortions. New Jersey Catholics voted, it should be noted, for McCain over Obama, 55 percent to 45 percent.
As one of his leading supporters told me, "Christie is not a fire-breather, but a center-right guy who has the vision and guts to beat Corzine and the Democrats this November." The election of Chris Christie would put a sudden end to all the talk about the need for Republicans to distance themselves from their pro-life constituencies.

Deal W. Hudson is the director of InsideCatholic.com and the author of Onward, Christian Soldiers: The Growing Political Power of Catholics and Evangelicals in the United States (Simon and Schuster).
This was sent to us by the Christie Campaign.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

HOLIDAY WISHES (Belated)

The Monmouth County Republican Blog takes pride in our commitment to the celebration of diversity. Therefore, we were kind of embarassed that we missed a holiday that is very important to a large segment of our population.
We Republicans as well as other Americans look at July 4th as a patriotic holiday at which time we remember the founders of our great nation, who took great personal risk to themselves and their families.
Followers of the Democratic Party celebrate a different holiday, April 15th. That day is not only a patriotic holiday, it is held at nearly religious heights as Democrats across the nation remember the Internal Revenue Service, which provides great personal risk to ordinary Americans (Not Timothy Geithner) and their families.
We apologize to all Democrats for our insensitive ignorance of their customs; the vast editorial staff here at the Monmouth County Republican Blog will be required to undergo sensitivity training at a reeducation center to be subsequently determined.
We hope all Democrats had a happy holiday.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

MALLET HIT

"It seems all the Trenton Democrats need to do in Monmouth County is say, "jump,' and our Democratic freeholders respond, "how high?' "
...Freeholder Lillian G. Burry

County Commissioner (neé freeholder) Amy "Hammerhead" Mallet (Biden with boobs) just pulled a live one. In the Asbury Park Press she and Director Barbara "Figurehead" McMorrow came out for housing Gloucester County juveniles at the Monmouth County Youth Detention Center. The article, written by cub reporter Bob Jordan, states that the county could recoup some of the center's operating costs this way. Nowhere in the article did it say whether Jordan had interviewed Sheriff Kim Guadagno, who operates the YDC, or Freeholder Lillian Burry, who oversees it as part of her freeholder assignment.

Yesterday, Burry and Freeholder Rob Clifton came out swinging in the Press. Apparently McMorrow came out swinging, too, you see apparently Mallet never told McMorrow that she was going to the Press. Publicly McMorrow joined the Democratic spin, although she admitted, "I have a concern that adding more juveniles may mean that we have to do capital improvements to the facility. I have not discussed this idea with anyone in Gloucester County." Clifton noted, "Gloucester took action on March 4, so somebody here must have been talking to them."

Gloucester County is led by Democratic-State Senate Majority Leader-3rd District Senator-Freeholder Director-Ironworker Union Boss-Stephen Sweeney-Billygoat-Legs. Mallet received a large $14,400.00 contribution, dated October 24th, 2003 from the Gloucester County Democratic machine. (Read more about Mallet's out of county sponsors here and here! Also here!)

There had been speculation as to why the Democrats were so adamantly opposed to closing the YDC. Some had speculated that it was due to support for the Democrats by public employee unions representing YDC workers. This flew in the face of the Democrats' treatment of county workers at large, and the Honest Abe Research Foundation was unable to find a compelling link. The liberal truth was revealed at the March 26th freeholders meeting, where "Flippy" D'Amico stated that to move the inmates to Middlesex County's more modern facility would inconvenience the inmates' families and their ministers.

Additional inmates would potentially require additional staffing at the YDC, which would cut into any revenue that might come from Gloucester. More importantly, it may require expensive construction projects, which would probably far exceed any revenue. But hey, the Democrats are heavily funded by construction trade unions, so that is probably their point. That and helping Billygoat-Legs Sweeney save the Gloucester County taxpayers money.

The Democratic freeholders are but puppets of the Trenton Democrats and their uber-bosses based in Union, Gloucester and Camden Counties. This has been predicted for years. They are obviously completely unfazed by criticism of their wheeling. It's just what they do. They must be stopped before they screw up the county even worse than they have.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

COUNTY EMPLOYEE LAYOFFS

No, campers, not here in Monmouth County. Not PBA Local 240 or PBA Local 314. Not the Monmouth County Youth Detention Center.
It's in Union County, where the Monmouth County Democrats get their wheeled money and their marching orders.
Read what The County Watchers have to say (in several posts) here.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

McMORROW'S FLORIDA FRIENDS

A few years ago we highlighted some contributors to Barbara McMorrow and Rebecca Aaronson's 2005 campaign. We still don't know what the reason is for all the Florida money. Since it looks like McMorrow is running for reelection this year, we thought it only fitting to refresh everyone's memory.

UPDATE

We had intended to publish a series of posts revealing the complete history of Director McMorrow's campaign finance. Not long ago she had expressed a desire to seek reelection to the board, and this information would have been very relevant. McMorrow would be a strong candidate and was the only Democrat on the board who was not blinded by sheer party loyalty; she would not jump every time "Flippy" D'Amico called. Still, she's very much a loyal Democrat.
She has declined to stand for reelection due to health reasons. While I am aware of what those reasons are, I will not publish them here out of respect for the Director's privacy; suffice to say, it's bona fide. We wish Director McMorrow well in her treatment and recovery.
We do not know who the Democrats will run for her seat, other than someone who will dance when Flippy calls the tune.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

VERY SILENT GLENN APPOINTED

Yet another losing Democratic county commissioner candidate was rewarded with a patronage job Thursday night when, in a 3-2 vote, Very Silent Glenn Mason was appointed as the county's Emergency Management Coordinator. He joins Silent Steve Schueler (Assistant County Counsel) and Rebecca Aaronson (MVC Agent) on the public dole. Read Art Gallagher's post here and the Asbury Park Press article here. Appointing a political crony to an Emergency Management post in a post-9/11 environment is like a platonic version of the Jim McGreevey - Golan Cipel fiasco. In a possible violation of the Open Public Meetings Act, Republican Freeholders Lillian Burry and Rob Clifton have been kept out of the loop and in the dark on appointments and other issues.
This is yet another example of the flip-flopping and hypocrisy that has been rampant in the less than 90 days that the Democrats have held the Board. In fact, at the same meeting we had the Democratic flip-flop on Amy "Hammerhead" Mallet's risky scheme to gut the County's open space tax. When they saw the public outcry, they backed off. Still, Michael Harmon, of the Board of Recreation Commissioners, discovered that fund moneys were proposed to be diverted from capital to operating expenses. According to Burry, "They changed their minds because it was a bad idea and because of the outcry against it."
Sheriff Kim Guadagno spoke about proposed layoffs of county employees and how it would affect her department's ability to serve the public, and was, in a Union County moment, actually gaveled down by Figurehead Director Barbara McMorrow for having the nerve to exceed the 5 minute limit on speaking. Reduced staffing at the County Jail will result in mushrooming overtime costs. It could also have other, more physical results. It really could.
Her predecessor as sheriff, County Chairman Joe Oxley, also blasted the Democrats, "The fact that you're about to hire Amy Mallet's running mate and still plan to lay off people from the Sheriff's Office is a disgrace".
The Sheriff also blasted County Commissioner John "Flippy" D'Amico (The Prime Minister) for interfering in the labor situation with her officers; Flippy was later blasted for the same thing by former Howell Mayor Joe DiBella, who dubbed Flippy, "Stone Cold" for his wooden, uncaring detachment at meetings. DiBella also pointed out that members of the public who exceeded the meeting room capacity were denied access to the Hall of Records itself, and forced to stand out in the cold. (That also sounds like Union County.)
Speaking of Flippy, and proving that the Inspector General issue isn't dead, the Board appointed by a party-line vote, former Freeholder Director Tom Powers, former Prosecutor and Judge "Hollywood Al" Lehrer and former state Chief Justice James Zazzali as the Ethics Review Committee, to determine that being bad is, well, bad. They will also advise the Board as to whether they should create and staff a new department of Inspector General.
This fiasco was just one meeting. These idiots have the whole rest of the year to screw things up royally. So, let's pack the house at every meeting. It's far from boring. That ZZZ isn't someone snoring, it could be the county's future bond rating.
November can't come soon enough!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

CHRISTIE IS PRO-LIFE

We at the Monmouth County Republican Blog have expressed concern about gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie defining himself beyond his crack record as a Federal Prosecutor. Our concern is rooted in the fact that all too many candidates backed by the state GOP establishment or "moderate" wing of the party have been, essentially, "Democrats lite", or RINOs. They fail to sufficiently contrast themselves with the Democrat, and inevitably lose.
We were deeply concerned that Christie would follow the same liberal path and founder against the Bozo-coiffed Governor Corzine, should Christie win the primary.
It appears that this is not the case.
We were very impressed with Christie's speech at Lincoln Day, in which he proposed a very aggressive fiscal policy and a frequent use of the line-item veto if necessary. He also pointed out the folly of Corzine's social engineering through the Council On Affordable Housing (COAH), and vowed to "gut" that policy.
Save Jersey has an interesting post on Christie's Pro-Life credentials. This is a sharp departure from previous establishment candidates, from the waffling Jim Courter to the mild Doug Forrester to the unabashedly liberal and rabidly pro-choice Christie Whitman.
This blog has not yet made a choice in the gubernatorial primary. All the candidates are qualified men of character who bring a lot to the table. Should Christie get the nod, and should he stick to a conservative platform, Corzine and the Dems could have serious a problem.
We would like to see more.
A start would be for all the candidates to address the problem of an overreaching judiciary. At the close of the Whitman-DiFrancesco Administration, all seven State Supreme Court Justices had been appointed by a Republican governor. (An unprecedented six by Whitman, one by Tom Kean, Sr.) Still, this court was at least as liberal as if it was all-Democratic, and some critics have even said it was more liberal. Can you say Torricelli-
Lautenberg switcheroo?
So, it has been very refreshing to see Christie take conservative stands. Let's keep it up.

Friday, February 20, 2009

EYE ON THE PRIZE

If you haven't read Art Gallagher's post, "Eye on the Prize", read it. You might learn something.

Monday, February 16, 2009

DEM CAMPAIGN FINANCE

OK, campers, it's time once again to take a trip down The Rabbit Hole to a land where up is down and down is up and wheeling isn't wheeling. That's right, we're going to take a look at the Monmouth County Democrats' 2008 4th quarter ELEC report! Along the way, be sure to munch on lots of mushrooms. You'll need them to believe that wheeling isn't going on.
$230,111.83. And very little of this money comes from here in Monmouth County. Very little.



Healy for Mayor. (Jersey City) $7,000.00 on October 29, and another $1,000.00 on November 3. A total of $8,000.00.

John Hamill, Jr. Also from Jersey City, he also contributed $1,000.00 on November 3.

Rush Holt for Congress. OK, at least he represents part of Monmouth County. $4,000.00 on October 20.

Upendra Chivukula for Assembly. (Somerset County) $1,000.00 on November 3.

New Jersey Democratic State Committee. $37,000.00 on October 24.

Election Fund of Joseph Cryan. (Union County) $15,000.00 in their trick-or-treat bag on October 31. No wonder they're asking this guy who to appoint to county patronage jobs!

Empower Newark. (Essex County) $10,000.00 on October 29. A PAC connected to Mayor Cory Booker. Christina DeSimone of the Rutgers-Newark Observer writes: "A political action committee called Empower Newark has reported a dramatic increase in funds, from $2,343 last year to $364,000 this year. The committee states that its goal is to support politicians who demonstrate a "genuine commitment to Newark." While the committee has donated to both Teresa Ruiz's and Bilal Beasley's Senate campaigns, Empower Newark has also supported candidates with little connection to Newark. Philadelphia mayoral candidate, Dwight Evans, and New York's lieutenant governor, David Paterson have each received $5,000 from the committee. How is this empowering Newark?" I guess Amy Mallet has a genuine commitment to Newark.

Election Fund of Stephen Schueler. Flippy's erstwhile running mate and current Assistant County Counsel Silent Steve. OK, this one is actually in Monmouth County. $3,611.00 on October 10.

Democracy in Motion. (South Amboy, Middlesex County) So far, I haven't found anything more on this PAC, but they contributed $2,500.00 on October 28.

Election Fund of John Wisniewski. (Middlesex County) $2,500.00 on October 28.

Bunion and Malley for Council. (Matawan) Alrighty, another from Monmouth County. This makes about 2 so far. $1,500.00 on December 21. Merry Christmas.

Election Fund of J. Christian Bollwage. (Union County. Again.) The Mayor of Elizabeth wrote a check for $500.00 on October 24.

Jon S. Corzine. The Bozo-coiffed governor himself contributed $25,000.00 on October 22.



Ready to see the labor bucks? I thought so.



Local Union 400 PAC Fund. (Wall) $12,000.00 on October 24.

District Council of Northern New Jersey Ironworkers. (Union County) $37,000.00 on October 28. Wow. Are the Democrats looking to start some projects using iron?

New Jersey State Laborers PAC, Non-Federal Account. (Middlesex County) $25,000.00 on October 13.

Local Union # 164, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers COPE Fund. (Bergen County) $25,000.00 on October 24.

New Jersey Regional Council of Carpenters Non-Partisan PAC. (Middlesex County) $10,000.00 on October 10.

Heavy and General Construction Laborers' Union Local 472 PAC. (Essex County) $8,000.00 on October 10.

PAC, New Jersey State Association of Pipe Trades. (Camden County) $5,000.00 on November 3.

DRIVE Committee. (Washington, DC) The Teamsters' PAC (Democrat, Republican, Independent Voter Education). $2,500.00 on October 10.

Operating Engineers' Local 825. (Union County) $1,000.00 on October 28.



The Dems are obviously completely unfazed by criticism of their wheeling. It's just what they do. And remember at reorganization where John D'Amico (Flippy) proposed major construction projects. Now you know why.