S.B. board appointment policy needs changing

South Brunswick residents in November 1997 overwhelmingly voted for a change to the council-manager form of government. Since its implementation in January 1999, its separation of administration from legislative function has proved to be effective.

It is recognized that our Planning Board and Zoning Board in our boom developing community are extremely important in rendering decisions on future land use.

In each and every municipal government that functions as a council-manager form, the appointment of citizens to these boards is the responsibility of the entire council, including the mayor.

South Brunswick continues to function under our old ordinance with the mayor in control of these important appointments. A recently introduced ordinance to effectively give these appointment powers to five members, council and mayor, has been amended and diluted to have the mayor still make the appointments "with advice and consent of the council." This would still allow the mayor to obstruct any appointment for political or personal reasons, which in fact has already been done. Before voting on this important ordinance, we challenge the council to find any N.J. council-manager municipality that has delegated this appointment power to a mayor in a "weak mayor form of government." Common sense dictates that five members instead of one can make a more unbiased selection of planning and zoning members with more competency and less partnership.

Sylvia Lee


Lee Schwartz

Media Coordinator

Common Sense

South Brunswick