[Editorial] The King’s Speech (Or The Worst Kind Of Politics)

[Editorial] The King’s Speech (Or The Worst Kind Of Politics)thumbnail
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Published: August 8, 2012 @ 8:26 PM EDT

Mayor Accardi read from a prepared statement during the June 21st Mayor & Council meeting where he started off by stating that, regarding the bulk pick-up fiasco, he accepts full responsibility for the failures of that issue. He even reiterated by saying that the buck stopped with him.

Commendable words. Unfortunately, he spent the rest of his speech by laying the blame on everyone one else. He never mentioned that he went on vacation without telling other members of council; that would have been something to take responsibility for but he did not. He then added that things would change where those that do things for their personal gain will have those activities put on full display for the community to see. Another admirable sentiment. But then at a subsequent meeting he reads a letter in support from former Republican Committee Chair Elizabeth Cairney in support of Doreen Cali for CAO. In the letter Ms. Cairney talks of personal work being done on public time. Strike that, she alludes to it by asking about it. She gives no names and no details, just throws the question out there in a veiled threat.

Does the mayor make a comment on that accusation? No. Does he state he will get to the bottom of such an accusation? No. He just read from it an used the set-up question for his personal wish of having Ms. Cali be the CAO. Instead of publicly stating he will find out more about what is tantamount to corruption, the use of public trust for personal gain, he just plays politics with it.

And that, is the worst kind of politics. That is a shame.

Added to the mix is the fact that the mayor wants Roselle Park to be more of a strong mayor-weak council instead of what it legally is, which is a strong council-weak mayor. During his speech he spoke of being the leader he was elected for and that he would take that lead, then he continues by asking, pleading,l that council do what he wants. The mayor should understand his position for what it really is and begin to create a consensus. It will be the way he will have to lead. Either that or he might end up like Garrett Smith, the former mayor of our neighbor Roselle who wanted to make the change without the finesse.

The mayor should act on the words he spoke in order to make the changes he wants for Roselle Park and understand he has to work with and answer to council, not the other way around.