April 9, 2024
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April 9, 2024
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Eisenman Runs for Clifton Council

You’d think Avraham Eisenman was busy enough. He and his wife, Yitti, have three children at home, all under the age of 10. He has a busy job as health care provider at Medrite Urgent Care in Passaic and is occasionally called in to work on “off” hours. He’s a member of the local Hatzolah branch. And he is an active part of the observant Jewish community in Clifton, where his family lives.

Still, the opportunity for public service beacons to him, so he has thrown his hat into the ring and is running for a seat on the Clifton City Council.

Asked why he decided to run, Eisenman told The Jewish Link: “I have been taught from an early age that if one has a talent and ability to help their community they have an obligation to do so. My father, a rav, has been my role model in this regard and took several controversial stands when they needed to be taken, and time has proven he was correct. He continues to serve the community till today.

“I felt I have a talent to connect with people, by using my emergency medicine skills of listening intently to people, hearing their issues and working with them for solutions, as well as involving an entire team together to help achieve that optimal outcome. I believe I can make a change for Clifton in general and for the frum community by serving on the city council.”

The Jewish Link asked Eisenman a few questions about his candidacy by email:.

Jewish Link: What do you believe are the three top issues facing Clifton right now?

Eisenman: I see the three main issues facing Clifton as flooding, accountability and communication.

It seems every time it rains, Clifton’s streets turn to rivers and basements turn into swimming pools. We need bold ideas to fix this problem. This includes bringing in flood mitigation experts to identify factors and real projects that can fix this issue. The city has done this in certain specific areas but we need a full city study and to get projects ready to go, so we can tap into available state and federal grants.

Most of the money the city council spends is taxpayer money; some does come from state and federal grants and other aid (which is taxpayer money as well but not related to property tax). Currently council budgets meetings are Saturday mornings at 11 a.m., and are held not in council chambers but a back conference room. While in theory they are open to the public, they are not televised, and only audio recordings are made available to the public. I pledge to be transparent to taxpayers and be honest about the budget and open the process up so any taxpayer can see the money being spent and ensure we are not wasting their money.

The city currently mainly uses ‘reverse 911’ to make phone calls to registered local numbers, to provide important city information. While this is one measure of communication, it is 2022 and we need to use more methods of communication including text messages, emails, an updated website and social media to better reach our residents.

In your view, what are the top three issues facing the Clifton Jewish community right now?

First, zoning laws. In the past few years the zoning board and planning board have attempted and in some cases succeeded in putting rules in place that impede the growth of the Orthodox Jewish community in Clifton. The zoning board members are appointed by the council, and the planning board members are appointed by the mayor; council members can offer input on both sets of appointments.

Second, property taxes. These taxes keep rising. This past year between the school board and council our property taxes went up almost seven points and nobody can really tell you where the money is spent or is going.

Third, representation. As the community grows we need to be more involved and have a seat at the table.

What are your qualifications to serve on the City Council?

I have been involved in the community from a young age. I started volunteering with Hatzolah as a service unit at the age of 18, and now am a senior member and part of the advanced medical team consisting of doctors and advanced practitioners on call for any medical questions that may arise on calls. I was also a coordinator on Passaic Chaverim for eight years and with the help of many partners built it into the organization it is today. I also sit on the board of the Jewish Memorial Chapel in Clifton.

I have been an emergency room nurse and I am currently a board-certified family nurse practitioner specializing in emergency medicine. In this setting, I often make do with less and roll with the changes and focus on a mission of optimal outcomes for patients. In medicine we work with partners in the medical teams for patient benefit.

Lastly, being able to work with partners across the spectrum is key to successful treatment of patients. These skills are key in city government. I need to be able to work together with other members of the council, as well as colleagues in the county, state and federal government to ensure Clifton gets its fair share of government funding.

What signs of momentum do you see for your campaign?

I have been going to events and knocking on doors, and I find people receptive to my message and to me. In general, people are becoming more engaged in local politics as local government affects our lives daily. When meeting voters I hear constantly that they want a voice that will actually represent them. Meeting voters, listening to them and continuing that dialogue once elected is a key component of my campaign.

For more information on Eisenman’s campaign or to get involved, visit his website eisenman4council.com or contact him at [email protected]


Harry welcomes your feedback on this news story.
You can reach him at [email protected]


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