The APP's Kevin Penton has a piece Online today about the budget battle in Middletown. Mayor Gerard Scharfenberger has several quotes that do not really address cutting the budget so much as criticizing people are trying to. In essence, the mayor's proposed budget for this year represents about a 10 percent increase to taxpayers if cuts cannot be found. Yet, the mayor responsible for this budget seems more intent on attacking political parties and talking about what cannot be done as opposed to what should be for residents.
Chiefly, questions about the budget seem to solicit comments from the mayor that are derisive about Committeeman Patrick Short's efforts to trim the spending plan, or else he defaults back into the "it's Trenton's fault" line. At some point, politics have o be set aside for something productive (Short is a Dem, and Scharfenberger a Republican).
There is some comment from the mayor about how Mr. Short should not have publicly questioned a department head, and that is ridiculous. Elected officials are supposed to be an advocate for the taxpayers; the electorate should know what is being done with their money. If elected officials (aka 'advocates for the people') have a question then so be it.
It's a fine story by Mr. Penton. Click on the headline and go to the APP.