Mayor second VP of state group

David Del Vecchio is now in line to become president of the New Jersey State League of Municipalities in two years.

By: Linda Seida
   Mayor David Del Vecchio has been sworn in as the second vice president of the New Jersey State League of Municipalities.
   Traditionally the post leads to the position of first vice president the following year and president two years later.
   The ceremony took place Friday during the league’s 89th annual conference in Atlantic City.
   Also Friday, Mayor Peter Cantu of Plainsboro ascended to the position of the league’s president, while Elmer Mayor Herb Stiles took the post of first vice president, and Denville Mayor Gene Feyl became third vice president.
   Last year Mayor Del Vecchio was elected by his peers to the position of third vice president.
   The league is an educational and lobbying association for municipal officials in New Jersey.
   "I think it’s a credit to the city that I’m lucky enough to play this role and improve things not only for all municipalities, but also for our municipality," Mayor Del Vecchio said.
   One of his main concerns, the mayor said, is the constitutional convention on property tax reform and the method by which schools in the state are funded. The issue is an important one "in terms of smart growth, in terms of planning, in terms of a whole bunch of issues," Mayor Del Vecchio said.
   The current property tax-based system is 300 years old and no longer makes sense, he said, and other options should be considered, including use taxes.
   Mayor Del Vecchio also wants to continue his vigilance in regard to banning heavy truck traffic on smaller local roads.
   The league this fall filed an amicus brief, or a "friend of the court" brief, supporting a state law that bans double tractor-trailers and trucks 102 inches wide from using local roads.
   That law had been judged unconstitutional several months earlier, and the state is appealing.
   Mayor Del Vecchio also is concerned about the state’s budget and the replenishment of the Transportation Trust Fund, from which the Department of Transportation awards numerous grants.
   "It’s critical," he said, "because that’s how things like municipal aid are funded."