GOP defeats Dems; voters say no to spending funds

| 28 Sep 2011 | 03:02

    WEST MILFORD — Republicans will maintain their stronghold on the township council since Phil Weisbecker and incumbent Carmelo Scangarello defeated Democratic contenders Andrew Gargano and Paul Marino in the election on Tuesday. After the election Scangarello said, “I am very happy. I’m pleased that I can continue doing what I’ve started over the past few years, I think I’ve done a pretty good job.” He said he thought the reason he was reelected by the community is “I’m sincere, honest and treat everyone with respect no matter their party affiliation.” Weisbecker, who served on the township council in the past said, “I am very pleased. I look forward to getting back into everything and serving the people of the town. I am very thankful to those who elected me.” He then went on to address a topic that has been somewhat of a flash point to the public, “I intend to address the question of the agenda, of petitions and requests. I want the council to revert back to four meetings every month with a regular and a workshop meeting occurring every second week. I’d also want to allow the public to address the council both at the start of meeting as well as at the end.” In opposition to the Republican position the public opted to vote down a municipal question that would have allowed the town to spend money from the Open Space Fund on recreational facilities. “I think that the voters were wise in rejecting the rip off of open space money for recreation. The proper way to fund recreation is through the municipality’s budget process. Let the council decide if the money allotted to recreation through the budget is being well spent and managed,” said Martin O’Shea, an outspoken critic of the idea. West Milford voters were out of step with the state (and Passaic County), as gubernatorial candidate Doug Forrester received nearly 1150 more votes than victor Jon Corzine. Local stats are as follows: Carmelo Scangarello - 3975; Philip Weisbecker - 3862; Paul Marino - 3437; Andrew Gargano - 3380. Municipal question: No - 3585; Yes - 2991.