Resident sees downside of moving Jackson election to November

Once again, under the guise that government knows better, we are being told to change the date when Jackson residents cast their votes for mayor and Township Council.

Jackson residents overwhelmingly passed a referendum in November 2005 to change the date of their municipal election to May in order to avoid the coattail effect which occurs in so many elections and to ensure that when candidates won elected office they did so based on their accomplishments and not their party affiliation.


lso, as we all have experienced,

November elections produce an avalanche of political mail from everyone from your county freeholder to our congressman and up to the president of the United States — everyone wanting a platform. Local issues get lost in this sea of mail.

A May (municipal) election forces politicians to talk about issues that impact us, the residents of Jackson. Issues like taxes and recreation, road improvement, cell phone towers, etc.

In a May election the local politicians are forced to discuss the issues because they cannot attach themselves to a popular politician at the top of the ticket. That is why some of these politicians want too badly to move the (municipal) election to November.

Now it seems that Trenton has said it is OK to overturn the people’s will and change the municipal election back to November, and some members of the Jackson Township Council agree in spite of the fact that residents said they preferred May for local elections.

Who is in control here? The people spoke, but apparently that is not good enough for the politicians.

So, even though we might still retain our nonpartisan status because candidates will still run under a slogan rather than under a particular party, the elections will definitely be skewed by who is at the top of the ticket.

If the head of the ticket is popular, then chances are that voters will tend to stay with that party and visa versa, if the candidate is unpopular.

Ultimately, if this change takes place, we will be back where we started four years ago.

And, to muddy the waters even more, this change in government (May elections) hasn’t really had a fair chance to work properly since we have had so many elections because of resignations and quirks in the election law.

What is the point of having a referendum if it goes unheeded? If voters want to change the municipal election back to November, then they, not the politicians, should have the opportunity to vote on that change rather than have it forced upon them.

Gerald Gross