How Brigantine Can Heal And Prosper

Brigantine is Talking Politics. A letter to the editor that was influenced by a recent, political newspaper ad >>>

Many ask: “How can a politically divided island heal, come together and prosper?” This question shows how much citizens care about Brigantine. They care because Brigantine is our home, not because of which political party they belong to.

Like 70% of taxpayers on the island, Brigantine is where we purchased a second home so we can visit often and hopefully retire to one day. Us 70%-ers support strong schools, public safety & services. But we sit on the sidelines and pray that those who can vote…do so with open eyes, minds and hearts. We all care about the same things: out of control taxes, public safety, condition of roads and bulkheads, empty store fronts, education, etc.

Bi-partisanship already exists. Brigantine Democrats work hand in hand with Brigantine Republicans on committees, boards, service organizations, and various social and charity events. But the cooperation ends when it comes to fiscal policy and how taxpayer dollars are spent.

A fact oft-forgotten: The Brigantine Democratic Party is more fiscally conservative than the Brigantine Republican party. Guenther, Simpson & Sera are RINOs; Republican in name only. Ironically, the Brigantine GOP has much in common with the OBAMA administration. The Brigantine DEMS have nothing in common with struggling national / progressive economic policies.

Many Brigantine residents vote for Republican candidates in a national election because they want smaller government, fair & firm deals with public unions, more support for growing small business and boosting private sector jobs. But in Brigantine, these same well-intentioned residents vote for Brigantine Republicans that proudly want to increase the City Hall budget, headcount & pension liability, provide unsustainable and economy-killing deals with public safety unions, and put up massive roadblocks to filling those 40+ empty storefronts on our Island.

We cringe seeing Brigantine Mayor Phil Guenther cuddle up to AC Mayor Don Gaurdian for a photo op. Totally understandable that Mr. Gaurdian must support the entire Atlantic County GOP ticket. We’re a huge fan of AC’s new Mayor. Mr. Gaurdian is doing things to turn around AC that past Mayors could only dream of…..but…..

Phil Guenther, you are no Don Gaurdian.

22 years is enough. Time for McClay to show us what she’s got. We’ll give her 4 years to prove herself.

Those who consider themselves a Brigantine Democrat or Independent know and have voted for the many fiscally conservative Republicans in Brigantine; Tom Milhous, Joe Campitelli, and Gloria Jacoby for example. Councilman Tony Pullella is a fiscal conservative that wasn’t welcomed in the Brigantine Republican party. He, like many others, crossed the street to the fiscally conservative Democratic Party of Brigantine.

Please note, we should all vote based on how candidates deal with certain issues. Not whether they have a D or R attached to their name. We all stand together at Church, Synagogue, Elks Lodge, American Legion, sporting and social events. And we need to start doing it without checking for political party affiliation

Some first steps to healing:

1. Stop the idiotic notion that you’re not a real Brigantiner unless you were born here. Get real.

2. Stop advantage of being an insider with the ‘right’ last name. Hire and promote on merit. Not nepotism or political affiliation.

3. Transparency. Open the books. All of them. Full city audit of all positions, responsibilities, funding, and organizational structures. Post all info on City website run by vetted and bonded 3rd party.

Most importantly: get rid of the single most corrosive element and biggest detriment to having Brigantine’s political parties working together….

The Culture of Fear and Intimidation.

Respectfully,
A Brigantine Taxpayer with No Local Voting Rights.

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1 thought on “How Brigantine Can Heal And Prosper”

  1. A truly excellent op ed! Substitute “Any Town, USA” for Brigantine because these points could be applicable to the responsible administration of all towns, cities, states and, yes, even the federal government. Entrenchment in government is usually corrosive—especially without the disinfectant of transparency. Signed, Another Non-Resident Brigantine Taxpayer Who Cares

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