Page 4 THE VILLADOM TIMES I • December 16, 2009 Franklin Lakes Establishment of tax group unpopular with council by Frank J. McMahon Franklin Lakes Mayor Maura DeNicola’s appointment of a Taxpayer Advisory Committee has offended members of the borough council. The council members have been vocal in their objections to the mayor’s action, which they say was taken unilaterally and without any prior notice. “I was totally unaware of the formation of this committee,” said Councilman-elect Frank Bivona said. “Clearly the budget is the duty of the council, not necessarily the mayor, and so her moving independently here makes no sense at all. I see this as a political move that is designed to undermine the efforts of the council and politicize the whole process.” Councilwoman Paulette Ramsey said, “This is totally outrageous. It’s a slap in the face to the council. We’re outraged that the mayor would put together nothing more than a campaign committee.” Councilman-elect William Smith also voiced surprise at the press release. “I have recently been meeting with Frank Bivona, the mayor, and members of the borough council as we begin the difficult process of getting Franklin Lakes back on a sound financial footing,” he said. “It was a surprise to me and I believe everyone else on the council to learn that the mayor, rather than work with the council, is forming her own committee ‘to assure value and accountability in the spending of tax dollars’ (Smith’s emphasis). It would appear that she has lost confidence in the ability of the council to develop a budget. “Although I’m sure the council will welcome input from any source, I am concerned that the mayor has just formed Helpful Hints Helpful Hints from ome “Use kitchen and bathroom ventilating fans wisely. They can remove a houseful of warm air every hour.” 27 Franklin Tpk, Waldwick Open Sundays 9-3 201-652-5666 Mary Says... her reelection committee and will be turning the difficult budget preparation process into a political game.” DeNicola named the new committee “Franklin Lakes FIRST” and advised that the group’s purpose is to take advantage of the knowledge and skills of residents to assure value and accountability in the spending of tax dollars. She stated that the committee is intended to work on behalf of all taxpayers and property owners, without remuneration, to analyze the existing organization and processes, and to make recommendations to improve productivity and reduce costs with an eye on opportunities to innovatively approach all municipal functions, including the sharing of services across borders. “Quality of life should be maintained while avoiding tax increases,” DeNicola wrote in her press release, explaining that the committee “will conduct itself with full transparency and with an open-door policy for public review and participation at all times.” DeNicola also had a committee website designed and established which can be seen at and an initial mission statement is published on that website. She invited all residents and business owners (continued on page 12) ������������������������������ Boilers Repaired or Replaced in One Day • Oil Tank Abatement • Chimney Liners • Water Heaters • Sewers & Drains • Cast Iron Gas Fired Boilers ����������������������������������������� ������������������ Christmas T & Wreaths rees • Finest premium trees and wreaths • Best prices in the area November 27 – December 23 Weekday 3pm-10pm Weekend 10am-10pm Ramapo College Baseball Field All proceeds to benefit Ramapo College Baseball Delivery Available Senior Discounts • N.J. State Lic# 6980 ������������ ��������������������� �������������������� 11-25-09 joan/janine RamapoCollegeBaseball2x2(11-25-09) 2 x 2” Winter specials available now for a limited time only. Call Robin at 973-636-7000