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Random Notes on NJ Government

Possible Conflict of Interest in Middletown and Union Beach Municipal Courts

UPDATE:  By letter of April 16, 2013, the Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct found that Judge Thompson did not violate an Canons of Judicial Ethics.  The letter is on-line here.  ———————————April 11, 2013 Hon. Gerald P. Scharfenberger, Mayor, and members of the Middletown Township Committeevia e-mail only to HBrunt@middletownnj.org RE:    Possible conflict of interest regarding […]

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Random Notes on NJ Government

Why was Ronald C. Aron, who serves as both an Oaklyn Borough Councilman and a Haddon Township Police Officer, busted from sergeant to patrol officer?

According to his Financial Disclosure Statement, Oaklyn Borough (Camden County) Councilman Ronald C. Aron also serves as a Police Sergeant in nearby Haddon Township.   A lawsuit and settlement agreement that I received by way of an Open Public Records Act (OPRA) request shows that a March 23, 2010 administrative hearing found that Aron had violated […]

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Random Notes on NJ Government

Regarding Readington Township’s “Peace and Good Order” ordinance

March 19, 2013 Sharon A. Dragan, Esq.Ballard & Dragan260 US Hwy 202-31Flemington, NJ 08822 RE: Readington Township Ordinance 05-2013 Dear Ms. Dragan: I am in receipt of, and a bit confused by, your March 18, 2013 letter regarding the captioned ordinance. First, you correctly state that N.J.S.A. 40:48-1 empowers municipalities to “Prevent vice, drunkenness and […]

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Random Notes on NJ Government

Deptford EMT sues for sexual harassment and retaliation

On December 26, 2012, Dawn Law, an Emergency Medical Technician employed by Deptford Township (Gloucester County) sued the Township under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (Law v. Township of Deptford, Docket No. GLO-L-1890-12, a copy of which is on-line here.) Law, who has worked as a Deptford EMT since 2000, claimed that EMT Deputy […]

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Random Notes on NJ Government

Stafford Council ignoring its own towing rotation ordinance

January 29, 2013 Hon. John Spodofora, Mayor and Members of the Stafford Township Council260 East Bay AveManahawkin, NJ 08050(via e-mail only to BPark@twp.stafford.nj.us) Dear Mayor Spodofora and Council members: I believe that the Township is currently out of compliance with § 192-5 of its municipal code.  That section states: § 192-5. Eligibility for rotating list. […]

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Random Notes on NJ Government

Absecon Police Officer April Kolakowski: Perennial victim or a troublemaker?

According to a December 28, 2012 Press of Atlantic City article (“Police Officer sues Absecon, alleges procedural violation,” by Derek Harper), Absecon Police Officer April M. Kolakowski filed suit against the City of Absecon seeking to overturn disciplinary penalties imposed upon her.  Kolakowski’s lawsuit, which was filed by Attorney John C. Eastlack of Cherry Hill, […]

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Random Notes on NJ Government

New Jersey considers decriminalization of small amounts of marijuana

Assembly Bill No. 1465 and Senate Bill No. 1977 seek, respectively, to decriminalize the possession of 15 grams (approximately a half ounce) or less and 50 (approximately two ounces) or less of marijuana.  Under the Senate version of the bill, those who possess 50 grams or less are subject to a $50 civil penalty.  Under […]

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Random Notes on NJ Government

Somers Point Enforcing Ordinance it Repealed Over 20 Years Ago

Here is my letter to the Atlantic County Municipal Division Manager. December 28, 2012 Tina Lalena, Municipal Division ManagerAtlantic County Superior Court4997 Unami BlvdMays Landing, NJ 08330  (via e-mail only to tina.lalena@judiciary.state.nj.us) Dear Ms. Lalena: From researching records of the Somers Point Municipal Court, I have discovered that the court, on April 17, 2012, accepted […]

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Random Notes on NJ Government

Improper Downgrading in Tenafly Municipal Court

Tenafly has an ordinance which makes any violation of the New Jersey Criminal Code also a violation of the municipal code.  The Tenafly municipal prosecutor then “downgrades” statutory charges to violations of this municipal code provision.  This allows the defendant to pay a fine but not get a criminal record.  Easy money for the Borough […]