A Dish Best Served Cold

Recent town council appointments smack of revenge or, at the least, an unwillingness to bend.

Get out the liquor licenses and let’s all rejoice! ABC claims to have a “hit” show this season called Revenge. I put quotation marks around the word hit because it is ABC that's touting the show’s hit status. I’ve asked around and nobody seems to be watching it. The program is set in some steamy, wealthy place where everyone is steamily attractive as they push forward their steamy agendas. Sounds a little bit like Moorestown these days, what with the balmy weather and the town council meltdown.

Obviously, this is not a television program about good neighbors, harmony or the gastric explosion known to afflict us snowbirds when in Mexico. It is also not a show about politics in Mo’town or the upcoming Republican slate for town council. Although if you’ve been reading Patch lately, ya gotta wonder. Last week, councilmen . They were NOT seeking revenge. If they HAD been vengeful, they would have attempted to run again.

Last summer, I was helping out at a fundraiser. If you don’t know who MoorArts is, they are an arts organization that raises money for student scholarships and teacher grants. Every dollar that comes into MoorArts goes back out to the community. When you consider the fact that no one on town council represents the arts, you understand how valuable and necessary an organization like MoorArts is.

End of commercial and back to the real story. There I was, at Fred’s Emporium, minding my own business, when I spied a big Mahaf from the elephant party browsing around. Having seen him at a town council meeting, I moseyed over and introduced myself. Without much prodding, this gentleman began to rant about the beginnings of the implosion on council. He specifically named the intractable trio who were pushing so hard for the K.I.DS. Initiative (or whatever they’re calling it these days), and hinted this trio would not have party backing in the fall election of 2012.

To say I was stunned was a gross understatement. Totally unsolicited, I had gotten the inside scoop. Those that refused to give an inch were going to be given the boot. From that conversation on, I saw the machinations of town council in a different light. I mean, if your own party doesn’t like what you’re doing, you’re doing something very, very wrong.

I have been to only one council meeting this year, I’m ashamed to say. I find it very hard to look at what’s going on there without realizing that nothing any of us do or say is going to make one bit of difference. The agenda was set in the macadam of a newly paved parking lot four years ago and the big boys will have their way. And really, isn’t that what power is all about? Doing what you want, regardless of what many of your constituents have said they DON’T want?

I was totally disgusted when the mayor appointed Mike Testa and Kevin Loftus to the Open Space Committee earlier this year. There were many well-educated and environmentally informed citizens willing to serve, but in an act that reeked of payback, two men who see the Open Space fund as a turf-lined cookie jar were appointed to serve. Mr. Mayor, may I offer up some words of wisdom from Confucius?

“Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves.”

Your absolute refusal to compromise has now come back to bite you, sir.

Testa and Gallo have said they won’t run again in order to devote more time to their families. As all of us parents know, our children pass through our lives very quickly, so their goal is admirable. Alas, I remain a skeptic, especially after watching what has happened politically over the last year.

Blinking over Deputy Mayor Gallo’s head is a huge neon sign that reads “I’m Ambitious.” I wouldn’t be surprised to find him popping up in a different political arena, perhaps at the county level. Mr. Testa will be spending more quality time with his family and being obstinate at the Open Space meetings. A little bird tweeted me to say that at the last OS meeting, Testa pooh-poohed every proposed acquisition in a way that was very intimidating to the other members. Rumor has it that he also threatened to buy the properties himself. Talk about consensus-building!

The town is all abuzz, wondering if Mayor Button will attempt to run for mayor again, even though . He remains convinced his many (?) supporters can carry him to victory. But people are tired of your intransigence, Mr. Mayor, whether they’re Democrats or Republicans. It is time for change and for healing. 

At my age, I find I am still stunned by the actions of others. People who are probably very nice people in one area of their lives forget the Golden Rule in other areas of their lives. The best politicians are the ones who listen and learn, the ones who are willing to bend. There has always been room for compromise on the big issues facing our town, but that acquiescence has not been visible with the TC Trio. 

Regardless of which party wins in November, we can only hope the newly elected will have learned from their predecessors and are ready to serve everyone in town, not just the sports clubs. ? Someone who wants to preserve open space? Someone willing to compromise?

Some words of wisdom from President Abraham Lincoln, for anyone considering a run at town council:

“Let us have faith that right makes might, and in that faith let us to the end dare to do our duty as we understand it.”

Ed Nice March 24, 2012 at 01:58 PM
Hey Homey so the town used county open space money to develop a park? Is that legal? LOL What;s the holdout then? Who is my district mrmc rep so I can call him and complain that they want to raise taxes for town hall but not use my taxes now to fix fields. When can I ask all the candidates the same question?
Keith Omlor March 24, 2012 at 05:05 PM
Homebrew - You are giving information that is not correct. The township did not use the grant along with the bond. The grant was used to pay back the bond and the remainder of the grant was used for additional needs at Fullerton.
Third base coach March 24, 2012 at 05:09 PM
Keith- wasn't there also left over funds put into a trust fund for future Fullerton park needs? How much was it $20k , $30k? Thanks.
Keith Omlor March 24, 2012 at 05:10 PM
Ed - Unfortunately this has always been the argument. Why is it ok to use the County OS fund for recreation improvements but it's not ok to use the township fund? It is the same fund using the same tax dollars.
Keith Omlor March 24, 2012 at 05:13 PM
You are correct. Friends of Fullerton, which no longer exists as a 501c3 organization, presented the township with $20,000 for the continued maintenance of Fullerton Park. This has been put into an designated fund.
Ed Nice March 24, 2012 at 06:09 PM
hey Keith, thanks for the information. Council is quick to take the open space money on one hand but claim it cant use it on the other. That is why I dont like the parties. They talk out of both sides of their mouth
HomeBrew March 24, 2012 at 09:10 PM
Stand corrected.
Ed Nice March 24, 2012 at 09:22 PM
Yes Home Brew you do stand corrected, again and again, and it still doesn't stop you from spewing misinformation on these blogs all the time like there fact, bending the truth all so you can have your stance on what is bothering you seem correct to all the people that read this blog looking for information. You know just because you don't like that something is going on in this town you don't need to fabricate information to try and build your small little following. Stop pouring the purple cool aid! People aren't drinking your poison anymore!
HomeBrew March 24, 2012 at 09:53 PM
Indeed, Council has proven its willingness use OS funds for field maintenance and improvements, not only the $250K county grant last year, but also more than $400K from OS fund over the last two years. The real question is, Should the township use OS funds to pay the approximately $2M tab for resurfacing one soccer field and two baseball infields in syn turf?
Third base coach March 24, 2012 at 10:52 PM
A lot of options with the $. To continue, also could use for open space, paying down debt on open space, resurface with sod, seed, and maintainence, farmland preservation debt, drainage of fields, park repair. Homebrew- are they placing turf at wb baseball field too? Any other suggestions? It appears if it goes to kids then it only covers only around 5%?
Ed Nice March 24, 2012 at 11:06 PM
Homey at it again....... The only reason we got the $250,000 grant was because of what we were going to use it for. If we had not fix the park at Fullerton we would not have been given the grant in the first place. So what is your point! Ohhh we spent $400,000 on maintenance of the fields in the last 2 years, well how about the 20 plus million that has been spent on acquiring open space. The money is for 5 different things but it has been one sided how it has been spent. And that is right because you say so. Get a clue HB, people aren't going to sit by anymore and do with out when there is a way to make it happen with out costing any additional dollars. Who are you to say right or wrong to put turf down? You complain about $400,000 on maintenance, well if we get turf fields down they won't have to spend that kind of money on maintenance!!!
Ed Nice March 24, 2012 at 11:30 PM
So 3rd base are you for getting our kids fields fixed and turf put down to lower costs of maintenance? You seem to keep going back to sod seed ect. These things have been done so many times I've lost count. Now KIDS project is willing to get large donations from the clubs to relieve some of the cost! So how is this a bad fix. Get them done right once and for all and put down turf because that's what the clubs want! Who are we to say they shouldn't have it! Have you ever played on Turf? It's great. True hops, no worries of taking a ball in the mouth! Field drains so they don't lose games. Have you ever been involved in running any of these sports? I have and it's a nightmare when you loss games do to rain outs and poor field conditions! Turf solves all these issues! Tired of people that aren't even going to get near them poo pooing the idea of turf! But then they will cry for a new town hall and library that will cost multi millions with no plan to pay for it other than a tax increase. By the way I am all for the fund paying for fixing any historic projects, maintenance or rec or farm land ect. If it's in the black and white of the ordinance then it is what it was meant for. We have basically acquired all the land we need to protect ourselves from what happen to the town with the hunt! Now if we acquire anymore space it's going to be more about the trees and making a safe place for the squirrels and deer to live. Well I want a safe place for our kids to be able to play!!
Turf Toe March 25, 2012 at 12:17 AM
I received an email from mark hines saying the open space fund is not legal for recreation and that when people voted it was not our intent. We only care about open space and not fields for kids. Get your own money.
Ed Nice March 25, 2012 at 02:28 AM
Ok if that is true than it shows that Mark Hines doesn't know what he is talking about! If it wasn't legal than one of you nut jobs in town would go to court and try and put a injunction against it's use. So I don't know if your just trying to make Mark Hines look bad or not, but there is no truth to the statement no matter who says it!!! So stop posting it as if it is the truth. As much as you want to bit.. it's not going to change the fact that it is legal and what the money was intended for. If you as a voter weren't responsible enough to know what you were voting on and voted yes back in 98 than shame on you! Don't say that no one knew what they were voting on. I agree that it was STEM and open space folk that pushed for the ordinance to get passed, but that does not entitle them to all the money as if it was their own private little war chest. Get over it people the fund will now be used for what it was meant to be used for. That being open space, rec., maintenance of farmland and rec. and historic renovation! I'm sure that's not the exact way it reads but close enough. You all get the idea. And HB Turf Toe and anyone else out there, stop with the BS pony up with your real names like big boys and girls and stop with the rhetoric! You are getting to a point where you make no sense and it doesn't mater how many times you say it your all lying to the readers of these posts. We have our money get your own for Town Hall and the Library! Do that and I would be happy to help!
Turf Toe March 25, 2012 at 12:13 PM
Its not your money mr. nice. Mark hines wrote that the open space funds are not to be used for active recreation or the kids initiative. Mark said council is raiding the fund and that he is against active recreation. Let the kids play on dirt. There are more important priorities in town.
Ed Nice March 25, 2012 at 02:33 PM
The only thing that you have said that is correct here Turf Toe is that the money isn't mine! I never said it was. It belongs to the tax payers and can ONLY BE SPENT on the 5 things that it is designated to be spent on. So all the other issues in town can not be addressed with the money from this fund. Get over it! Mark Hines is wrong and just because he says it is wrong doesn't make it so! I could say the sky is falling and guess what, I would be no more correct than Mark Hines on this issue! The money is being used for the maintenance of the fields which were acquired by the town. It doesn't say how they have to be acquired so don't try and split hairs. As I said if this was illegal then it would have been in court a long time ago. But your side of the street knows it's a losing battle so you come onto this site and spread lies. I feel you are the worse kind of resident, you are selfish and will lie to get things the way you want it! You would post that kids should play on dirt, well how about you call up Edgar and get them too put a sign outside your home and go move! If Mark Hines is running for a council seat again this year and those are his stance that I would think he is going to get steam rolled like he did in 08! Play on dirt, really! Keep coming up with comments like that and see how many followers are in your corner at the end of this battle. Heck you guys already lost, it's going to happen one way or the other ...... LOL Yeah I'm laughing at you!!!!
Ed Nice March 25, 2012 at 02:48 PM
My son was just looking over my shoulder while I wrote my last post to Turf Toe, and I told him what was going on. HE said this " If Mark Hines knew what he was talking about he would have been on town council after 08" !!! From the mouths of babies!!! A 16 year old can figure it out why can't you people!!!
Turf Toe March 25, 2012 at 05:57 PM
The MSOS position is accurate. Recreation is not sports. The money is only for acquiring and maintaining open space for conservation not sports and historic preservation. That is what we intended when we voted to buy land and not fix parks.
Ed Nice March 25, 2012 at 09:33 PM
Ahhh no it's not and if you don't like it call Tom Coleman and he'll tell you the same thing. Your little group may not like it not but that won't change the fact that you are wrong and everyone on he knows it. LOL this is fun! I guess our county and state have it wrong too because they use a fund for the exact same things that we are now using it for and the ordinances are worded the same. Go tell Gov. Christie he is spending their funds in a way that they weren't intended for!!! LOL Once again if that isn't how you wanted the funds to be spent, I guess you shouldn't have voted yes back in 98. Is it my fault you didn't know what you were voting for. Your arguing a losing battle. Give it up! Your wrong and their is nothing you can do about it!!!
Pool sticks March 25, 2012 at 09:42 PM
Maybe mark Hines , MsOs and the mrmc will team up again? Ed what are you to do ? Are we going to see these msos and kids signs all over the place amongst the political signs? What would the candidates think of that? Maybe they will just go along? Diehard? Jh?
Ed Nice March 25, 2012 at 09:52 PM
Hey Stick it really doesn't matter what the MSOS says. Or what any of the candidates say about the fields. The work will be getting started in a couple of months. That train will have left the station by the time the elections come and it will be a moot point. The only issue that needs to be settled are the other 2 sitting council members do the right thing and vote for a bond to get the work done which will be paid for by club contributions and by the fund or are they going to force BGT to just vote to start cutting the checks to get the work done which would drain the fund for the remainder of the year. It doesn't make it go away because the fund will be replenished come the next tax draw from the town! So Turf Toe who needs to be amputated can keep screaming foul as much as he wants. What he should be doing is making sure that BGT don't have to just cut the checks. He should concede that it is going to happen and now support a bond which would the most fair thing for everyone and their needs! See it's not just all about KIDS, but if the council is backed into a corner to get it done then they are going to do what they need to do!
Pool sticks March 25, 2012 at 10:07 PM
I'm trying to understand, so you would support a Garwood, Miller, Palko ticket? You and someone said they are all for turf? (haven't seen anything about napatino). Diehard and abc123 dint think button is running, and someone said Hines is running. So what's your suggestion of who to vote for?
Ed Nice March 25, 2012 at 10:19 PM
My suggestion is wait and see! We will see if JB runs as a Rep. or a Indy or not at all. At this point as the voters who cares. We are either going to get candidates that are going to start and do different things to possibly solve some of our issues or we are going to let party politics get in the way of this town. I have said this over and over, party politics have no business being part of running a small town. For the most part or costs are fixed except the rising costs of benefits and capital improvements. We are at a point in life where we can't just keep going to the well (the tax payers), and asking for more money. Hey some people in this town can afford what ever taxes they are asked to pay. That just is what it is, it's the rest of the folks that are getting taxed out of this town that we need to start defending. That's not a Dem or Rep. statement that is a Moorestown statement. I am going to hold onto what I think is going to happen when the smoke clears because it's not my place to speak for anyone other than me. I'm not running. There you go that's all I can speak of. Maybe this Monday night there will be more light shed on what is to happen when it comes to JB. Maybe he say the heck with it and the KIDS project is going to be his final accomplishment on his way out along with Gallo and Testa. We are a long way away from election day. There are options out there and when the time comes we will know what they are!!!
Strawbridge Lake Dam Fan March 25, 2012 at 10:57 PM
Why would p. miller run with garwood and palko? we thuoght he was running with button and broder. no one will beat that ticket. the republicans and dems dont stand a chance against a popular indy mayor and indy ex councilmen who brought liquor to town in the face of the gop party opposition
Lenola Rocks March 25, 2012 at 11:07 PM
ok "Lake" , as I said in the other blog, that's my point with name recognition and people who know our town well. I don't care what names are thrown around, but Button and Miller, you heard of them. Let's talk issues, but Ed said it doesn't make a difference, only maybe that button has record, you need to elaborate of the pros and cons on that. Is Miller a confirmed candidate yet? Is Button really running? btw- what's up with our dams?
Strawbridge Lake Dam Fan March 25, 2012 at 11:57 PM
Is p. Miller running or not? We have heard good things and he is known around town unlike the mrmc ticket. Would he run with button or maybe Hines if he is against fields.
Ed Nice March 26, 2012 at 12:12 AM
As I said already it really doesn't matter who is for or against fields cause it's going to happen! What does matter though with all the families in this town who's kids play sports, is that the candidates better be for fields or they will just be wasting their time running. Does it make sense to be against such a large voting part of our town. MRMC isn't for fields but they know they lost that battle so why not nominate people that support it. Their candidates would not have a chance of winning a race in this town if they were on record of being against the fields. Our kids our this towns greatest assets and we should do everything with in reason of helping them succeed. Sports that teach leadership, pride, humility, sense of worth, to just mention a few of the benefits of sports, is just as important in their development as their education at school and at home.
Pool sticks March 26, 2012 at 05:23 PM
Did you sign his petition? When you do let us know. Who else has a petition for town council? I would think some would want to meet before they signed away. What's this that someone think the mayor is making a campaign announcement tonight at a meeting? Elaborate.
S. H. R. March 29, 2012 at 06:11 PM
S. H. R. March 29, 2012 at 06:16 PM
As I was listening to a conversation today, someone said, John Button is out.


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