By Mayor Richard Gerbounka
Linden’s form of government is out of date and in need of an overhaul.
The City of Linden operates under the Wildwood Act, commonly known as the city form of municipal government, which was established in 1897. Under this form of government the mayor does not propose the budget, vote on the budget, nor can he veto the budget. The entire budgeting is the responsibility of city council. Most New Jersey municipalities operate under the 1950 Faulkner Act. This form of government gives the mayor the authority to propose the budget and city council decides whether to accept or reject it.
The Faulkner Act delineates the separation of power between the executive and legislative branches of government and is no different than how budgets are prepared by our president, our governor and most other New Jersey mayors.
The time has come to bring Linden government into the 21st century and change our antiquated form of government. Linden needs a drastic change if we are to stabilize our taxes and keep our city an affordable place to live. That is why concerned Linden residents will be knocking on the doors of registered voters with a petition to give the Mayor the authority to propose the budget.
When we get approximately 20% of Linden’s registered voters to sign this petition designating a change in Linden’s charter to the Faulkner act, it will be put on the ballot. A majority of voters will then decide if our current form of government is in need of replacement.
It is my belief that one person should be held responsible for proposing a budget, instead of a committee of four council members who point fingers of blame at each other. I am able and willing to accept this responsibility.
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