The 2013 Bergen County Budget

“Democrat Chickens Are Coming Home to Roost…”

By Freeholder Maura DeNicola (R-Bergen) | The Save Jersey Blog

Maura DeNicolaWe face a very difficult and very important election in Bergen County this year. It is vitally important that you arm yourselves with the facts concerning county issues.

Last year, the Democrats did a wonderful job disrupting the Republican message, playing on our disunity, and presenting misleading information to voters and the media. We cannot allow the Democrats to do that again in 2013. We must be united and informed!

My goal this year is to make sure you have the facts on the issues and that you understand the utter mess that we, the Republicans, inherited from the previous Democratic regime. I believe if you are properly armed with reliable information you can better serve as our ambassadors to the voters.

I want to start this year by giving you information about the Overpeck Park “boondoggle” that the Democrats created – and that you are paying for. Please take a few moments to familiarize yourself with this information and if you have any questions, feel free to contact me…


The recently presented 2013 Bergen County budget includes a $1.4 million bill that is a distasteful reminder of the excesses of the previous county administration, which borrowed recklessly and spent foolishly.

This new annual $1.4 million payment, which must be made for each of the next eight years, $11.2 million in total, is to pay down just the debt service from the Bergen County Improvement Authority (BCIA) financing of the initial overhaul of Overpeck Park.

The controversial park project was mismanaged by the Democratic-controlled Freeholder Board which oversaw the BCIA while the park was being rebuilt from 2005 through 2010. Well over $100 million was spent on this project. The Record newspaper said it “mushroomed into a multimillion-dollar boondoggle for the politically connected.” They were right.

  • In 2003, Dennis McNerney and the Democrats bonded over $10 million against future tipping fees, (charges to contractors for dumping soil), from Overpeck Park. They funneled the money into the operating budget to artificially lower the 2003 taxes.
  • It took the Democrats 10 years to collect revenue from the dumping at Overpeck and still they fell short of the $10 million they borrowed.
  • A 2010 article in the Record regarding an audit of the BCIA’s Overpeck operation found that officials at the Authority “neither reviewed delinquent accounts nor tried to collect them. The same officials failed to properly keep track of fees collected from truckers who dumped construction debris and other unwanted fill at the controversial Overpeck County Park project.”
  • The paper went on to say that: “In some cases, the truckers — who delivered more than 2.5 million cubic yards of fill to the park — were not charged authorized rates to dump at the landfill-turned-lakeside park.”
  • The report showed that Democratic county officials had extended discount prices to firms looking to dump demolition debris and other fill at Overpeck. The Record reported that; “Truckers that dumped mildly contaminated fill culled from construction sites across New York and New Jersey often paid the county only $2 to $3 a cubic yard in fees.”
  • Now these Democrat chickens are coming home to roost, and you and your neighbors will be paying for this particular recklessness for the next eight years.

I will have more information on budget landmines we were left to grapple with in future correspondence.