UNION COUNTY – Lisa McCormick, the Democrats for Change candidate on Column B congratulated County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi for emerging from her five year hibernation in time to appear busy before the June 8 primary election.
“It has been about five years since the Union County Clerk issued three press releases in 12 days, which coincides with the five year term we are both seeking,” said McCormick.
Rajoppi emerged from hiding to assist a Cranford family with passport applications and she treated Municipal Clerks to lunch at taxpayer expense. In between, the news-hound made time to pose for a photo op.
After McCormick made her remarks, a $55,000 Homeland Security grant funded a mailing with Freeholder Daniel Sullivan’s name and picture. Sullivan dismissed complaints about that as he voted to raise property taxes Thursday night.
“It would be funny if this overt abuse of county resources for political gain were not an well known and well documented fact,” said McCormick. “County tax dollars should not pay for a ramped up public relations effort at election time on behalf of candidates favored by the Regular Political Organization.”
McCormick cited a 2005 letter by Tina Renna, president of the Union County Watchdog Association to the Star-Ledger. “Rajoppi had a total of eight press releases and no photo ops (in 2004),” said Renna in the 2005 note. “As of today, Rajoppi, who is now up for reelection, has 52 press releases and 25 photo ops listed.”
She said Renna and others have routinely called county politicians to account for waste in pursuit of public relations. “This is an abuse of taxpayer money is as perennial as the grass and as welcome as weeds,” said McCormick. “It is simply shameful that the Regular Political Organization cheats taxpayers by pilfering PR for political purposes.”
After 27 years in the Union County Courthouse and 33 years as an elected official, the incumbent can only promise more of the same and we need Democrats for Change, she said.
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