Thursday, June 14, 2012

CONCERNING THE BERRY LETTERS

“The City of Plainfield has a history of having to face significant financial challenges.
The Administration has attempted to adjust to changing times to meet those challenges. lt has been our hope that the majority in the City Council work in cooperation with us to achieve the goal of financial responsibility.--------------------------------------------------
Clearly the majority of the City Council is attempting to mortgage the future of the City instead of being prudent with surplus funds to guard against future fiscal crises. We are of the opinion that the majority of the Council is seeking to draw down on this surplus as a short term political strategy”
These are the words of City Administrator Eric Berry in one of three letters written Tuesday June 12.2012 to Jorge Carmona of the State’s Division of Local Government Services which has the responsibility to review for errors and approve municipal budgets that meet the State’s standards.
These letters of complaint were written for the Administration who submitted  by a City Administrator who had minimal input if any in the production of the Mayor’s Budget. An Administrator who missed the May 31 and June 6 Council meetings when amendments to that budget that would help correct the gross errors which the State found in the mayor’s budget were approved .
A budget submitted by an Administration which for the second time in four years had submitted a budget with over a million dollar error which would have been costly to the tax payer.
An Administration that submitted its budget at the deadline to just avoid State penalties
An Administration who has blamed any errors on a departed CFO, who left his office about three months before that budget was presented to the Council.
An Administration that has for over 6 years exhibited a callous regard for fiscal responsibility by not filling critical fiscal positions such as CFO , Director of Administration and Financial Services, and even City Administrator for extended periods of time.
An Administration that has ignored repeated fiscal irregularities that are pointed out by the City Auditors in consecutive annual audits.
An Administration that has demonstrated a disregard for Budget lines in authorizing expenditures of funds.
How can that Administration dare charge the Council with political motivation when its changes have actual saved taxpayer’s money and at the same time protected the Library which Administration would throw to the wolves?
Perhaps the Mayor believes that the results of the recent election to be a mandate. If so the Council majority will have a difficult task to protect the integrity of the government. It will need the 50K to employ its own legal Counsel.
We will find out if the Berry letters had any impact in Trenton when on Monday night the Council will vote on a resolution adopting the amended budget  amendments assuming that it has they have received State approval. The budget will then be voted upon June 18 after a public hearing on that date.

3 comments:

  1. This mayor has proved over and over again to be a petty, inept person who has no clue what she is doing and is perhaps better suited to run a church bake sale. I hope her pastor is better, but from the debates it seems they are more alike and different. We shall see and I hope the citizens of Plainfield pay attention. Can we recall a member of the City Council. If so, then we can have at it.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Doc,

    I have told the residents who have contacted me about this matter to come to the Monday city council meeting to directly ask the city administrator to explain himself regarding the content of these letters and his comments about the 6-1 vote on the library budget amendment in particular being "political." That someone who decided to be ABSENT during the critical budget process of the municipality he is supposed to be in charge of would call the city council's attempt to correct the incompetence he presides over (and contributes to) a "political" maneuver should have the residents outraged. The lack of leadership we witnessed the other night--the continued obfuscation, the obtuseness, the evasiveness--and the complete and utter lack of respect for the residents of this city by those in charge is par for the course in this administration.

    Rebecca

    ReplyDelete
  3. Reading comments on the different blogs,it seems there is a small contingent of citizens who are concerned about City government. Looking at the voting trends, there are many who have opted out of the voting process. The small contingent is not enough to overcome the majority who do vote. This majority votes the party line which has not given up the best administrators.

    Each day seems to bring news of malfeasance in the government. Somewhere along the line, "Government for the People" has fallen out of favor!

    ReplyDelete