Resident tells council to dump town’s paper


EAST BRUNSWICK – Residents asked last week that the township stop publishing its own newspaper due to the cost of the operation.

Members of the public who spoke during the July 7 Township Council meeting said the township is not accomplishing anything worthwhile by funding the East Brunswick Quarterly.

Robert Lennon said the newsletter was simply a way for Mayor William Neary to promote his agenda. The resident said that when he first heard of the newspaper, he supported the idea. However, he said the reality clashed with his vision of what the publication would look like. For example, he said, he envisioned something with articles on various township departments. Instead, he said residents received a newspaper that had “the mayor patting himself on the back every three months.”

“You can dump this thing,” he said.

The comments followed remarks made in recent weeks by council members Catherine Diem and David Stahl, both of whom felt the newspaper was costing the town too much. Stahl said his review of the budget shows the town is spending at least $25,000 per year on the publication. The two members said the township could use that money elsewhere.

Neary has said the newspaper is a way of keeping residents informed of what is going on around town, and that he wanted to get more information out to residents.

Resident Camille Ferrara said that by the time the publication reaches people, the news in it is old.

“It is a waste of time and money,” she said.

Ferrara noted that Neary stated when establishing the newspaper in 2005, that it would become self-sufficient through the sale of advertisements. That has not materialized according to Stahl’s figures.

Monday’s public discussion moved into other areas as well.

Lennon also asked if the state Attorney General’s office ever updated the status of its investigation into the township’s sale of the Golden Triangle to developer Toll Brothers. Township Attorney Michael Baker said he has received no answer from the office.

“Their answer is, ‘We don’t comment,’” Baker said.

DeLucia also noted how the township is still firmly under Democratic control. He praised Democratic Councilman Donald Klemp for running as an independent in this year’s mayoral race. Klemp decided to run as an independent after the party chose Stahl as its mayoral candidate.

DeLucia said he sees the county Democratic Party’s influence all over East Brunswick, and that the Democrats of 50 years ago are very different from today’s party members.

“Things have changed in this town, and not all for the better,” he said.