In my letter to the township council letter dated June 6, 2012, “Stop Wasting Money on Special Labor Council” I cite the fact that the township had approved over $102,000 in legal fees. Since I never had the courtesy of a reply, I obtained more documents through OPRA and learned that $23,225 in special labor council fees for May and June billings were approved for payment. What will the total be for July and beyond? How long will the council continue to give the special labor council a blank check for this unnecessary litigation?Concerned West Milford residents want to know the truth pertaining to the litigation former police Chief Paul Costello initiated against the township in July 2011. The public and the media have a right to know all of the facts pertaining to the lawsuit and his treatment by the mayor and council after 36 years of exemplary and dedicated service for the residents of West Milford. After all, the facts are not based on misinformation or uninformed opinions, but primarily on the township’s own documents which are accessible to anyone.Just one of the many facts that forced Costello to initiate the suit was the township and mayor’s refusal to compensate him for all of his earned and accrued vacation time due to the Civil Service cap. The township and Mayor Bieri, however, authorized payments to two other retirees for their accrued vacation leave above the same Civil Service cap. In addition, 19 township police officers/PBA members were also permitted to accrue vacation leave above the Civil Service cap with the mayor’s full knowledge. It’s no wonder that Costello was forced to sue the township for the amount of money the township itself told him he was entitled to receive.The mayor and council must stop wasting West Milford taxpayers’ dollars by continuing to pay Special Labor Council and do the right thing by settling this lawsuit now. The $102,000 paid to date to Mr. Corrigan could’ve been put to much better use: paying for two entry level police officers for a year.
Robert CleggWest Milford