Pay Hikes Slammed

ELIZABETH—Five City Council members whose terms expire this year were pilloried in leaflets circulated around the city that compare increasing unemployment, widespread foreclosures and rising taxes with their record of voting for a pay hike as the nation headed into an economic collapse.

“Nelson Gonzalez & his pals got Elizabeth seriously off track…,” said leaflets, which list unemployment, property taxes and home foreclosures among key problems, that were distributed in the Second Ward.


Meanwhile, fliers passed around the Third Ward declared, “In the midst of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, the Councilman Joe Keenan & Mayor Chris Bollwage snapped into action… they gave themselves a pay hike!”

Councilmen William Gallman, Manny Grova and Frank Mazza were also targeted for the attacks, which refer to a pay hike for members of the governing body and Bollwage approved shortly after the last election.
The leaflets state that they were paid for by the Central Jersey Democratic Leadership Committee, an organization headed by Democratic political strategist James J. Devine, and they refer readers to a website at

Devine said the messages are intended to alert voters that instead of working to solve problems facing working people in the city, out-of-touch politicians are helping themselves to taxpayer money.

“This is an important year for change in Elizabeth,” said Devine. “I believe voters here—and throughout Union County—will be searching for alternatives to the political insiders who are on the ballot.”

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