Saturday, November 29, 2008

Keep Continuity in Government

Reflecting on the problems of governmental transition, Plainfield’s issues have not been as severe as past Jersey City situations with glue in locks and urine on carpets, but there have been situations where those newly in power seek to purge the ranks of employees suspected of loyalty or partisanship to the last administration.

The thing is, there exists a fundamental level of service employees who may have no political axes to grind, but are committed to keep government going while changes take place at the top. These employees are the municipal government bedrock.

While they may go along with the goals of a new administration, they all have day-to-day tasks that more pointedly connect to state obligations. These employees may be challenged by newly-elected employees who have no concept of their obligations, but act out of perceived powers to over-ride the rules.

The current administration may prevail in 2009-10 or someone else may take over. The point is, this city needs ongoing stewardship regardless of who is in charge. Kicking out middle management with familiarity of municipal government is not a good thing. There must be some continuity, no matter what the politics suggest.

It is not too early to start thinking about the dynamics of the 2009-10 government. The involvement of 16 talented citizens in the FY 2009 budget process is a plus for ongoing understanding of future governmental scenarios. The other resource is the knowledge of longtime employees who know the way things work vis-Ă -vis state government regulations.

Maybe the time has come for the sharp division of one administration to another to fade in favor of addressing collaboratively the issues before city government.

--Bernice Paglia


Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is also certainly true for the Plainfield Public Schools. The new administration, from Florida, does not seem to understand this.

9:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As usual, right on the mark. However, one of the exceptions is the Department of Code Inforcement. Past directors and the current director, regardless of who the politicians are, have not been effective in protecting the people and the housing stock from abuse by exploitive property owners. They too - hide behind the excuse that they are controled by the mayor and council when it comes to doing their job. Consequently, we all suffer. Which brings me to Councilman Elect Adrain Mapp, mayor-in-waiting. As a past councilman, he turned a deft ear to the abuse by exploitive property owners. His most recent pronouncement, a mantra over many decades, "we need to work with these people," assures more of the same bad management if his wish to be mayor is realized. Now, and I hope, someone with clearer understanding of the problem, courage, vision and inclination to create a leadership environment will step forward an put an end to the mediocrity that continues to sap the vitality of hope from the Queen City.

1:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The new administration would be Dr. Gallon, the new superintendent. That is an interesting comment considering that the administrators in the district including Dr. Bailey were a part of the prior administration. Sure he brought four people from Florida, good for him most new supers do that. If you see what is happening in Newark under their new superintendent, you would really rethink your comment. As a PPS insider, I can tell you that the persons brought from Miami were all were to fill open positions dating back to last year except the newly created Assistant Superintendent positions. One went to Dr. Bailey as well. The District Affairs cabinet position was filled by a
30-year Plainfield veteran Mrs. Williams. I don't see the reality, not to mention the logic behind that comment. I am a member of the administration and have been so for several years. And am not from Florida.

3:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What I'd like to know is when is some one going to take charge and do something about the rent in Plainfield? The housing situation in Plainfield is absurd!!!! The homeless rate is rising and the funds are getting less and less. Some one needs to address these issues. If things don't change soon, there will be no one left living in Plainfield. Everyone I know is moving out of state or out of town. Come on Mayor Sharon Robinson Briggs, do something about this problem and don't front and try to say it has nothing to do with you. It's all about you!!!!

2:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It would be nice if Mapp's ear was "deft" but unfortunately it's not--it's "deaf." He talks too much and doesn't listen unless you just say you agree with every foolish thing he says.

4:08 PM  

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