Appointment concerns Jackson resident

Jackson Councilman Barry Calogero and Township Council President Robert Nixon may have violated state ethics laws for voting on resolution 060R-14, introduced by Councilman Calogero at the Jan. 6 council meeting. The resolution was to approve the appointment of Jackson resident Clara Glory to a paid position on the Jackson Township Municipal Utilities Authority (JTMUA) for a five-year term.

Council members admitted that the JTMUA was not consulted on who they may recommend, nor was the position’s availability advertised in any manner.

Residents voiced concern at the recent council meeting that both councilmen should have abstained from voting on the appointment, considering the appointee also served as the campaign manager for both councilmen and therefore may have created a violation of state ethics laws.

The conflict of interest statutes were designed to ensure that public officials avoid conduct that would violate the public trust or even prevent any impression of such violation to the public to preserve public confidence.

Councilman President Nixon had, up until the appointment of his campaign manager to the JTMUA, prided himself on abstaining from voting on any issue that he felt would provide even a hint of any conflict of interest.

Both councilmen and municipal attorney Jean Cipriani stated that in their opinion, no conflict of interest existed. Ms. Cipriani offered to provide evidence of her decision at the next council meeting.

A resident responded by saying that based upon conversations with various state regulatory agencies, a conflict of interest may exist and that a complaint was in the process of being filed.

Raymond Cattonar