EDITOR: The overwhelming burden of taxes is the greatest challenge to living in New Jersey, and the reason most of us know somebody who has left, or is planning to move out of the state. Property taxes are most often cited as the tipping point.
In Bedminster, we are fortunate to have among the lowest property taxes in the state. This does not happen by accident – it takes responsible government at both the municipality and the county.
Doug Stevinson continues to lead the Township Committee by pursing shared services and efficiencies. Doug negotiated the most recent police contract that is both fair to the union and provides budget stability for the coming years. The police department constitutes the largest line item in Bedminster’s budget.
While fighting for the taxpayers, he still championed quality of life improvements for the community like the dog park on River Road.
Gina Fernandez will bring the innovation of a tireless community volunteer. She ran our local Girl Scout Troop, co-chaired the Bedminster PTO Spring Fling fund-raiser, and Bernards High School “Project Graduation.”
If you have children in Bedminster, you likely already have been touched by Gina’s caring leadership. She has a strong record of doing “more with less” and will bring those skills to the Township Committee.
Your property tax bill would be out of control without the Somerset County Freeholder Board keeping a lid on their budget. Pat Walsh has served as a freeholder for 12 years. In that time the county budget has remained stable; even cut taxes in recent years.
Somerset County continues to have a Triple A bond rating and quality services due to Pat Walsh’s leadership.
Bill Parenti, North Plainfield’s police chief, is running for Somerset County sheriff. He puts public safety as job one, but pledged to run a lean Sheriff’s Department that will work more closely with municipal police departments to save each township department costs.
Bill has programs to fight the opioid epidemic that have already been adopted by retiring Sheriff Frank Provenzano and praised by his opponent. Parenti is uniquely qualified to serve Somerset County well as our next sheriff.
I was heartened to read your recent article profiling the Township Committee candidates. In it they all agreed that the committee has done a good job managing the budget and they appreciate our lower taxes.
Budget responsibility is all too rare in government these days – look no further than Trenton and Washington – we need to keep Bedminster on the right track.
Please join me in voting for Doug Stevinson and Gina Fernandez for Bedminster Township Committee, along with Pat Walsh for Somerset County Freeholder and Bill Parenti for Sheriff on Nov. 5.
Editor’s note: The writer is a former Bedminster Township mayor.
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