Nolan was insensitive

| 06 Sep 2012 | 01:08

    I found it insensitive of Robert Nolan by his letter addressing the West Milford business owners and lake property owners. These taxpayers, due to the recent reevaluation, were slammed with massive tax increases, some over 200 percent. As a former councilman and now the current leader of West Milford’s Democratic Club, Mr. Nolan should express compassion, instead elected to make such statements that accuse these tax payers of “reaching into his pocket” because his taxes were reduced. Mr. Nolan’s insinuation that his property taxes subsidize local business owners and lake residents is an insult.
    No, Mr. Nolan, these taxpayers are not "barking up the wrong tree” nor are they wasting council’s time when coming before us. Residents have always been encouraged to bring their issues to the public town meeting, especially issues that are so devastating to their families, their businesses and their employees. This is the reason we have a public comment portion.
    Council was not fully aware of the impact and disproportion of the re-evaluation results until we were confronted with desperate pleas for help. Mr. Nolan, I am glad that your taxes have been reduced, but your mere reduction cannot compare to the mammoth tax increase placed upon many homeowners and businesses.
    It’s not these unfortunate West Milford taxpayers that are reaching into your pocket, Mr. Nolan. It’s the sticky fingers of Newark and the Newark’s Watershed Development and Conservation Corp, the same culprit that the Republican Council has battled through the years. And allow me to remind you, Mr. Nolan, this same culprit that you, when on council, verbally defended and told the council majority that they were “barking up the wrong tree” by going after Newark. Their aggressive tax appeals and low property tax awards are continuing to haunt us. How disingenuous and hypocritical is your current opinion and position.
    The Republican council majority will continue to battle Newark’s lust for West Milford tax dollars. With Councilman (Michael) Ramaglia advocating to employ a lobbyist, the West Milford Town Council united will take on this new approach to tax Newark on the revenue generated from their sale of West Milford water. The same taxation method used on many West Milford businesses. Persistence will prevail.

    Joe Smolinski
    West Milford