The future of this Republic is in the hands of the American voter,” said President Dwight D. Eisenhower, over 50 years ago. This November, the future of our Garden State is in the hands of the New Jersey voter.
Sadly, voter turnout has dipped below 50 percent
in our last two gubernatorial elections. We hope that this year’s election reverses that trend. The decisions that will be made by the winner will affect us all. So, ultimately, will the decisions made by our fellow citizens. How many will chose to participate in our democracy? And what will their preference be?
Because the ultimate winner will set the course of New Jersey government for the next four years, it is important to know his intended destination. For those of us who care about local government, it is crucial to know his positions on key municipal issues.
Will the winner of this year’s election support mandates relief? How will he help local leaders cope with the recession? When can we expect the state to honor its statutory commitment to inflation adjusted property tax relief funding? What are his top three priorities? How does he view the COAH third-round mandates? And what about forced consolidations?
This year, when New Jersey will elect a Lieutenant Governor for the first time, the two major party candidates are joined by an Independent, who raised enough to qualify for public matching funds and, most importantly, the televised debates.
All three agreed to answer a few questions we posed to them over the summer. Their responses appear in this issue.
We thank them for their attention to our concerns and for the regard they have shown for you—their colleagues in the public’s service.
Editorial from New Jersey
Municipalities, Volume 86, Number 7, October 2009