By Matt Rooney | The Save Jersey Blog
Steve Sweeney and a gaggle of New Jersey state senators (Democratic and Republican) pitched a number of legislative proposals on Thursday afternoon which they say will help New Jersey’s 21 counties raise revenues.
The multi-bill package includes S3169, legislation which if signed into law would permit counties to impose a 1% hotel tax. More on that later, and the fact that additional pension reforms and workforce downsizing wasn’t on the agenda. Typical…
For now: who is Steve Sweeney to give counties advice on anything?
Seriously. By 2010, the last year of his long tenure as director of Gloucester County’s Democrat dominated freeholder board (a post he’d held since 1997), things got so bad in one of South Jersey’s machine-dominated outposts that county residents did something they hadn’t done in many years: elected two Republicans.
You can’t blame them for wanting a second opinion. Earlier in 2010, Sweeney’s board was placed under monitoring by the New Jersey Superior Court:
On July 27, Superior Court Judge Francis J. Orlando Jr., the assignment judge in Camden County, decided a monitor was needed to watch the all-Democratic freeholder board and report back to him. He said the freeholders had violated the meetings act, also known as the Sunshine Law, even after the lawsuit was filed.
It was a rare ruling, issued after an appeals panel asked Orlando to see whether there was “a pattern” of violations; the lawsuit cited 50 instances.”
Betting you non-South Jerseyans probably missed that one!
So if I’m looking for advice on assembling steel frameworks or running a GOTV operation, Save Jerseyans, I’ll consult the Senate President. Running a county? Meh… I’ll run screaming in the other direction.