Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Incumbent Mayor Wins Second Term

As predicted by the Courier News, Mayor Sharon Robinson-Briggs was re-elected for another four-year term, defeating Republican challenger James Pivnichny by4,906 votes to his 2,103. Independent Deborah Dowe received 391 votes.

While correctly assessing the odds on her win in a city where Democrats outnumber Republicans more than 12 to 1, the editors did take note of a first term with "few successes" and some major flaws in governance. Local bloggers went further, posting long lists of unresolved issues from the past four years, including road upkeep, high turnover of administrators, stalled development and state chidings on the lack of a chief finance officer for two years.

Whether the mayor will take these concerns to heart remains to be seen. Her mentor, Assemblyman Jerry Green, also won re-election, though by a closer margin. The pair could take their wins as a mandate for business as usual.

However, Republican Chris Christie's defeat of incumbent Gov. Jon Corzine will mean new leadership in Trenton. In the midst of 44 recent arrests, including many Democratic politicians, the head of the state Department of Community Affairs stepped down. This department includes the Division of Local Government Services, which is only now pressuring the city to set things right fiscally. If Christie can find the right person to head up the DCA, perhaps oversight of local government will tighten up.

Robinson-Briggs will also have to contend with Councilman Adrian Mapp, whom she defeated in the June mayoral primary but who has three more years in his council term. Mapp and other members of the governing body have taken off the gloves over fiscal lapses and many other failings of the administration.

As for Pivnichny, he obviously has support beyond party lines and, if he wishes, could still be a voice for more capable government. The silver lining of his loss may be that he will not have to clean up the messes made since 2006. The mayor must now take up that chore herself.

The other municipal winner Tuesday was Bridget Rivers, who won the Fourth Ward City Council seat. Rivers is the current president of the Board of Education. She will have to relinquish that seat Jan. 1, but could do so sooner. The board will then have to fill the vacancy and also pick a new president to serve until the April 2010 school board election.

--Bernice Paglia


Blogger Rob said...

The only hope we have is with Chris Christie as Governor, he puts a strong Attorney General in place and within a year Mayor Jerry and Assistant Mayor Sharon are dragged out in handcuffs. They all the people who voted for her and Jerry can blame the Governor for those 2 being such a hot mess. While the rest of the world moves forward, Plainfield remain locked in time. Look at the way it looks now everyone and close your eyes, because in 4years, it's going to look the same with the Un-Dynmaic Duo, Skipper and Gilligan at the helm of the SS PLainfield.

5:14 AM  
Blogger Rob said...

oh...I forgot !! Let's all congratulate Dottie G. Because now that Mayor Jerry & Assistant Mayor Sharon one they are going to work hard to get the hospital open that the Republicans closed!!
( well...in Dottie's world )

5:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, at least I can look forwrd to the local bloggers keeping up with the downfall of Plainfield

6:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now is the time for all people passionate about Plainfield to make their voice known and heard.

They are elected, Sharon and JG are still our employees and as such, are obligated to do our bidding. Let us not let them forget that, or get away with their ineptness.

The council also needs to hear from us. Do not let go, Plainfield. If you do nothing, you get nothing.

7:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with anonymous. Plainfield will never come up in the world. It's sad. And to top it all off, a local resident was held up at gunpoint and robbed at the corner of 9th and Madison last night. I cast my vote for change yesterday but it looks like it's just time to move.

8:19 AM  
Blogger Rob said...

Whoa..pardon my earlier typos.. I am more sick than I thought ( flu, not the election FYI )

8:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been DISAPPOINTED so far, but maybe I will be mistaken and love the next 4 years.

I honestly hope that the Mayor gets a few days of good rest and comes back refreshed.

P.S. Sign me - someone who has needed a second chance in life

10:55 AM  
Blogger active citizen said...

I agree with Rob. If we have a strong Attorney General some heads will roll and we won't have to wait for the Feds to do it. Our local politicians better take heed, since they are a risk of ending up in jail.

Plainfield can't afford the waste and corruption we've had for the past four years. I'm sure people think we need more bars and dollar stores. That's part of our legacy from the current administration. Let's keep their feet to the fire and demand more.

10:55 AM  
Anonymous Keep It Real said...

I see the Group Think syndrome is still flourishing *smile*.

10:29 AM  
Blogger Rob said...

Oh Active Citizen : I ONLY WISH WE HAD A BAR THAT THE AVERAGE PERSON COULD GO TO !! A small little pub with a tv, a quaint bar...someplace you don't need to be frisked and wanded to get into!

1:30 PM  

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