As mail-in voting has already begun, I wanted to share some of my personal insights into the slates I am supporting as part of Teaneck municipal elections this fall. Early in-person voting will also commence at the Rodda Center in Votee Park beginning October 29. Additionally with one day town-wide voting on November 8, there is no reason why we can’t have 100% turnout … and we need it.
This is an important election because four of the seven town council seats are up for election, a majority. Mayor Jim Dunleavy and Councilwoman Gervonne Romney Rice are retiring, and Deputy Mayor Elie Y. Katz and Councilman Keith Kaplan are seeking re-election. The three seats not up for election are mine, Councilwoman Karen Lew Orgen and Councilman Mike Pagan.
I am supporting the slate of Katz, Kaplan, Desiree Ramos-Reiner (a current planning board member) and Latisha (Robinson) Garcia. This is a slate that is inclusive, diverse and supportive of ALL of Teaneck and is especially proactive. With the incumbents they will continue to #GSD—Get Stuff Done.
A victory by the opposing slate would stop our 16 years of progress, which include many accomplishments. Listed below are two that are important to our township and to our readership:
1. In the last 16 years since we won four of the seven seats, virtually every shul has expanded, as have TABC and Ma'ayanot. Yeshivat He'Atid was created. Bnai Yeshurun is beginning their own expansion plans.
2. Over the last eight years the municipal taxes have seen a zero increase. (The Board of Education has seen an annual 2% increase each year over that same time period.)
Our council-appointed planning board (Chair Joey Bodner) and zoning board (Chair Jan Meyer) each has approved expansions to our homes, apartment buildings and hotel/hospital/commercial sites to allow for the growth of our neighborhood, replacement of 80-year-old outdated homes and parking lots and the apartments needed to house our younger families. These developments provide the needed tax revenue to offset any increases needed and to keep Teaneck an attractive place to live. These developments also provide affordable housing and funds to redo parks and playgrounds.
This council serves the ENTIRE Teaneck, regardless of race, religion or quadrant. It is not US vs. THEM. We are a vibrant community moving forward together, not a 1970s town staying in the last century.
For the Board of Education, we are supporting David Gruber, Gnesha Shain, Darryl Greene, Lori Bullock and Michael Reich.
Teaneck Town Council
Elie Y. Katz
Latisha (Robinson) Garcia
Teaneck Board of Ed
By Mark (Mendy) Schwartz/Co-Publisher,
The Jewish Link and Deputy Mayor, Teaneck