Taxes, spending on agenda

| 22 Feb 2012 | 08:00

    Taxpayers group to hold Q&A with Township Manager Vernon — A question and answer session with Vernon Township Manager Melinda Carlton will be held by the Vernon Taxpayers Association Wednesday, Feb. 25, at the Nordic House. The group, formed last June, is concerned with how the government spends taxpayer dollars, according to its founding organizer, Thomas McClachrie. “Amid a $10 million town center that sits empty, the disbanding of the township health department and the layoff of municipal employees, the Vernon Taxpayers Association, as a ‘watchdog’ organization, meets to discuss and make recommendations about the township’s economy and government practices,” McClachrie explained. Membership consists of some 25 residents, he said, but the organization wants more to attend its meetings and to voice their concerns. The group generally meets on the second and fourth Wednesdays of the month at 7:30 p.m. at the Nordic House café on Route 94. Meetings are generally informal and amicable “roundtable” discussions of various township issues, although the group of citizens has taken formal action on several issues, according to a press release from the organization. Recently, they issued a public statement at a town council meeting, asking deputy mayor Glenn McLaughlin to resign after learning McLaughlin had had numerous zoning and health department violations. The VTA pointed out that one violation existed for two years until a member of the group brought it to the attention of the municipal zoning office, which resulted in the zoning officer issuing McLaughlin a summons, telling him to remediate the violation or go before the township’s Land Use Board. McLaughlin is scheduled to appear before the Land Use Board on Feb. 25. If you go When: Feb. 25, 7:30 p.m. Where: Nordic House café, Route 94 Who: Guest speaker, Melinda Carlton, Vernon Township Manager More info: Call 973-764-5659.