Part-Time Resident: Brigantine City Council In-fighting Intolerable

To the editor from David T. Wood…

On Saturday, May 24, I had the opportunity to attend my first Brigantine council meeting after being a part-time resident for 11 years. My hope was to witness something other than the bickering and infighting that these meetings have become notorious for. Those hopes were unfounded as discussions regarding finances, civil employee contracts, positions taken, and unauthorized release of information became fodder for sniping.

On one occasion a council member stated that the town can’t be run like a business. Really? Our taxes are the revenues that we entrust council to spend in a prudent manner in providing us (your customers) with services. In that regard, council is bankrupting us.

Perhaps the only issue that was resolved was the impromptu discounting of 4×4 beach permits for veterans. This was without any real debate of the merit, precedent, or consequence. Let the meter begin calculating how much revenue will be lost on that maneuver. This is the type of “I want mine” attitude that has gotten us in the fiscal mess we currently find ourselves in. Maybe the rest of us should get a discount for having to endure this nonsense.

It was at this point that I could take no more, and left the meeting. As I walked out of the city hall, I couldn’t help but notice the eight or so police officers standing in a group doing nothing. I don’t know whether it was due to a shift change, but really, is that the impression you want give when negotiating a contract?

As I drove back to the south end of the island, I followed a Brigantine police SUV that passed bikers riding against traffic, and then made a turn without signaling. It was at this point that I couldn’t help but laugh at the irony of a town where a council discussion of who has the right of way at the town’s only traffic circle had no consensus.

David T. Wood

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3 thoughts on “Part-Time Resident: Brigantine City Council In-fighting Intolerable”

  1. I agree with David. The UNcommon sense approach to correcting the on-going problems (many caused by Egos) is laughable…. EXCEPT- this is NOT a laughing matter. It would be good if our Council ran the show like a business, as it should- with fiscal decisions made in the interest of the success and fiscal security of ALL members of the Team we call “Brigantine”. Instead it is constantly geared to favoring a select few employees that are over-paid and under-worked. We too have seen employees standing around in groups….. running FULL blown businesses “on the side”… and we hardly ever see employees working, except for a very few at a time… The town should be bustling with all the workers that WE pay .. Perhaps our Council and Manager may want to take a look at Scott Walker from Wisconsin. HE was able to correct the fiscal woes of a WHOLE state…. Your tax hikes will send your Full Time residents packing because they will not be able to afford Brigantine… Perhaps THAT is the plan.

  2. While overtime is being looked at, it may also be a good idea to look at how many breaks are permitted and how long are these breaks. More times than I can count, I have observed a police vehicle at the resident’s home multiple times during a shift idling outside for extended periods of time (especially in the off-season). Perhaps there is a work-from-home policy in Brigantine?

  3. John W. Pucci Sr.

    Dear David, I’m glad to see to have finally engaged in attending a public meeting. After owning property here in Brigantine for 11 years, congratulations on attending your first meeting.
    (THAT’S APPROX 270 MEETINGS IN A ROW YOU WERE AWOL) What a minuscule effort! You don’t have the right to complain yet.

    Us “I want mine attituder’s” have been attending public meetings consistently for years, offering our ideas at the microphone to make Brigantine a better place. Not walking out with your tail between your legs.

    Your so called meter has already begun calculating, it is currently at the count of 2. If you were at last Sunday’s Memorial services during Roll Call, you, as the rest of us did, heard silence
    when the two names of members of the Military from our Island of Brigantine were called. The call was unanswered because they died in combat defending the very beaches we all enjoy with our families.
    Their families don’t enjoy our beaches anymore quite as much as you and I currently do.

    HOW DARE YOU SAY “THIS TYPE OF ATTITUDE HAS GOTTEN US IN THE FISCAL MESS WE CURRENTLY FIND OURSELVES IN”. What a stupid, ignorant, arrogant American you are. The only “irony” is that the United States Active Military and Veterans are the people that protect your right to attend a public meeting.”I couldn’t help but laugh” must be easy for you to say, because you are a clown of the highest degree.

    John W. Pucci Sr.
    Lifetime Member Veterans of Foreign Wars
    30 yr. Member American Legion

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