“Genuine politics—even politics worthy of the name—the only politics I am willing to devote myself to—is simply a matter of serving those around us: serving the community and serving those who will come after us. Its deepest roots are moral, because it is a responsibility expressed through action, to and for the whole.” So said Vaclav Havel, the poet and playwright who had once been imprisoned as a dissident, but who went on to become the last President of Czechoslovakia and the first of the Czech Republic.
We know that New Jersey’s local elected and appointed officials have made the decision and the commitment to engage in such “genuine politics.” And we know that you make countless willing sacrifices of your time, your energies, your talents and your emotional strength “serving the community.”
The League exists to help you in that noble work and our Annual Conference is carefully designed to provide you with the knowledge you need.
Whether you serve in an older suburb, a rural township, an urban center or a rapidly developing community, there is so much to gain from united action. And there is so much to lose, if we fail to stand together.
So the League, in general, and the Conference, in particular, provide opportunities to serve the common good of New Jersey’s municipal family and of all the families that live and work in New Jersey municipalities.
A look at the Conference program, which appears in this issue, will serve as a guide to the problems and the possibilities that we all face. Budgeting, Senior Services, Property Tax Reform, Crime, Eminent Domain, Immigration, Energy, Solid Waste and Civil Rights are just a few of the subjects addressed.
These are not issues that divide us. They are issues that must unite us, if we are ever to convince our colleagues at the state and federal levels to give us the tools we need to build a better future for our individual municipalities, and, more importantly, for the people we are sworn to serve.
Editorial from New Jersey
Municipalities, Volume 83, Number 8, November 2006