Saturday, May 17, 2008

Council Hiatus Coming Up

On Monday (May 19, 2008), the City Council will conduct its business meeting at 8 p.m. in Municipal Court. The next one won't take place until June 16, due to the primary election hiatus.

The agenda for the May 12 meeting, which I viewed online from Seattle, had only six items. It seemed kind of thin. I will be checking tomorrow to see whether items have been added.

It has been my experience that the once-a-month summer sessions end up having huge agendas. For June, there are usually numerous items related to closing out one fiscal year and starting the next. Sometime soon the governing body must also consider liquor license renewals, which may involve hearings on controversial ones. An overcrowded agenda means short shrift for some stories that would get more exposure otherwise. Plaintalker will try to keep up.

The June 3 primary is the reason for the hiatus. Glossy mailers have begun to land in mailboxes. One touting the incumbents arrived from a Carlstadt address with a South Hackensack postal permit. It also lacked the name of a campaign treasurer and referred to Harold Gibson as a past "city manager." Didn't know we had one of those.

Another flier took a cue from a past mailer issued by Mayor Sharon Robinson-Briggs and offered Mother's Day greetings.

The primary contests pit incumbent City Council President Harold Gibson against political newcomer Annie McWilliams for the citywide at-large seat, and incumbent Councilman Don Davis against former councilman and freeholder Adrian Mapp and challenger Olive Lynch for the Third Ward seat.

Gibson and Davis both received the party line from the Regular Democratic Organization. Mapp and McWilliams, daughter of the late two-term Mayor Albert T. McWilliams, are running as New Democrats. Lynch, who is leading a campaign to save Muhlenberg Regional Medical Center from closure, is running under the slogan, "Democrat for Change."

--Bernice Paglia


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