Belleville Watch Challenges The Town Council To Pass A Resolution At October 27th Meeting Urging Attorney General Investigation Into 2014 Board of Education Deficit

Editor’s Note, 10/16/2020 — a link to this article was e-mailed this morning to Mayor Melham, Town Council members, the Township Attorney, Township Manager and Township Clerk. – FF3.

At this past Tuesday’s Town Council meeting, Your Belleville Watchdog took the rare step of addressing the council during public comment. I presented a challenge to them (the whole video of the meeting is worth the watch, but my comments start at 2:10:00,) in the spirit of the “Belleville Watch Challenge” to Board of Education members, which board candidates Michael Sheldon and Frank Velez fully met.

I publicly challenged the Town Council to place on the agenda — and fully adopt at its next meeting on October 27th — a resolution encouraging New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal to investigate possible criminal activity related to the 2014 Board of Education deficit.

My challenge was met with silence from the Town Council, the same way a similar request I made back in August was met.

The Mayor and Township Council have an opportunity to demonstrate to Belleville residents clear leadership by committing to #Justice4Belleville.

Such a resolution shouldn’t be controversial for our Town Council, whose members rarely miss an opportunity to tell Belleville residents how pro-taxpayer they are. The deficit in 2014 was close to $4 million, and the school district, funded by property taxes, has been making yearly payments — to the tune of almost $500,000 — to the New Jersey Department of Education to pay back the loan it floated the district to close the deficit. If this isn’t a issue of fairness and justice to all of Belleville, we are at a loss as to what is.

The challenge has been given to the Mayor and Town Council. It remains to be seen if there is still such thing as leadership and integrity in Belleville’s town government. The proof in this matter will hinge upon the agenda — and the Town Council’s actions — at the next Town Council meeting on October 27th.