Right now we've got some work ahead in removing the lethargy caused by the entrenched politicians and many professionals running Atlantic Highlands. The list of problems, including taxes, town debt, and water/sewer rates just keeps getting worse. The politicians in power think the residents all have money trees, and fixes include increasing taxes and imposing surcharges rather than being proactive. Those running the town today want to keep things the same and resist change to protect their well-established little fiefdoms.
Can the present politicians and the many expensive professionals surrounding them truly overcome the bias of their entrenched affiliations, or do they perceive, use and politicize the issues - not solely for the taxpayers benefit - but for political gain, and to benefit their old affiliations? Now is the time to make the following choices: the regional sewer authority must finally be disbanded with no more delays, and sewer charges separated from water bills and made tax-deductible to taxpayers; First Avenue needs to be made vibrant again with a "Harbor Trolley" and weekend ferry services; empty storefronts must be made to look occupied and vacant lots made to appear like little parks by their landlords.
Today, issues that face our town are often dismissed by the administration as impossible to solve or they are simply ignored. I have faced all of these same issues by my political involvement in every town in New Jersey in which I have lived for the past nearly 40 years. The issues can be resolved if we get rid of political lethargy and doing things the same for the last 50 years. We must act now to guarantee political independence and the prosperity and appeal of our town.
Paul Cavise is the Democratic Candidate for Mayor of Atlantic Highlands