Op-Ed: Fort Lee Resident, Former Assembly Candidate Responds to Weinberg Editorial
By Keith Jensen.
Editor’s Note: Fort Lee resident and former Republican candidate for State Assembly in District 37 Keith Jensen submitted this letter in response to Sen. Loretta Weinberg’s (D-37) recent Op-Ed published on NorthJersey.com.
Senator Weinberg, in response to your opinion most recently published in our local County newspaper and here on the Teaneck and Fort Lee PATCH, I find it unsettling that you did not bring these issues up about Port Authority salaries before. Much more unsettling is how you remain silent when towns in your District, like Teaneck and Fort Lee, are passing referendums and raising school and municipal budgets to cover the need for Millions of Dollars because our school systems do not have enough money to operate. We would have all the money needed if you addressed the fleecing of our schools in non Abbott Districts.
Notwithstanding 85% of the state, but every town you represent would receive an approximate 33% property tax cut if we funded schools fairly. Every one of them.
Instead, you allow these Abbott Districts to have a blank check at your constituents expense. Here, in your Op-Ed, you speak about funding for women's issues. Well, if we did not have 400 administrators making $100K plus a year in Newark or 200 in Union City (and that does not include the additional benefits and pension they will reap), or free Pre-K for any child in Hoboken even if their parents make $500K a year (yes, everyone in Hoboken is considered at need so everyone gets free Pre-K at the expense of taxpayers in towns that are NOT in need; towns like Englewood, Teaneck and Hackensack).
So, if you live in Fort Lee, Hackensack or Teaneck for example, and are a single mother of 2 sets of twins under the age of 5, and you don’t have an income, and even if you are in low income housing; simply because you live in one of these towns you will still not receive free Pre-K. You will pay for it. Sad, and you are speaking about women’s issues. Here is one example and the silver bullet to fix it would be to speak out against the NJ Supreme Court’s ruling, even if you don’t think it will change a thing, although it could with a Super Majority vote that you could lead.
In your eyes Hoboken is considered poor and Hackensack is considered rich, just by the rules of Abbott, which you could speak out against, thus truly representing your constituents.
Then again, I am not sure if that is what you do, just look at the Korean population who you led as their Piped Piper. Then as the quintessential Trenton turncoat, you voted against the nomination of Judge Kwon for the NJ Superior Court. Once again, you did not represent the people who elected you to fight for their best interests. Rather, you kowtow to the political party machine where your allegiance truly is aligned. We in Bergen County are left paying for that.
Back on topic, if we had a fair school funding formula NJ would have more than enough to fund these additional programs and many, many, many others, or to return paid taxes to our local school systems so we don’t have to pass referendums to raise everyone’s taxes to cover expenses coming from towns like Hoboken, or to just give everyone a 33% property tax cut.
Even Democratic Freeholder Voss says it herself twice over:
Once as an Assemblywoman, that Democrats will not allow fair school funding to pass, and again last week as our Freeholder where she identifies the unbalanced funding formula for our schools.
Please. Your partisan rhetoric is the pot calling the kettle black and that is why we are in the position we are in.
Incidentally, I did not hear you at all during the Corzine administration when all of these board members of the Port Authority were making $300K a year, nor when you allowed us to continue making buildings (or to demand a business case to make the WTC site) instead of focusing on just the bridge, tunnels and airports. Yet, here you are speaking about their salaries now. Where were you then?
Oh that's right, in 2009 you were campaigning with Gov Corzine as his Lt Governor, so you were being a good soldier and rubber stamping all of the $300K salaries, free E-ZPasses, and benefits for the Port Authority appointed positions that you anointed.
I am mad about the toll hikes and have let my representative chain of command know, which formerly includes you, all the way up to the Governor. He knows I, the Ft Lee residents, District 37 and NJ want him to veto the toll hikes. Sadly, he is putting out the fires that Gov Corzine flamed and his Lt. Gov to be allowed.
Consequently, you are the reason why we in NJ are in the fiscal position we are in now.