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Letter: Overturning Bond Ordinance Will Cost Ridgewood Taxpayers

Ridgewood Village Manager Roberta Sonenfeld
Ridgewood Village Manager Roberta Sonenfeld Photo Credit: LinkedIn

RIDGEWOOD, N.J. – The Ridgewood Daily Voice accepts signed and original letters to the editor up to 350 words. To submit your letter, e-mail ridgewood@dailyvoice.com .

This is in response to Lorraine Reynolds’ statement, which was followed by statements made by Saurabh Dani, claiming that if the petition to rescind the municipal bond ordinance is successful, it would not require a special election and can be held until the November ballot.

Upon consultation with our counsel, the village maintains that a bond ordinance adopted by the village is subject to the referendum provisions of the Faulkner Act and not the Home Rule Act. As a result, since there is no general or regular municipal election scheduled during the allotted time period, a referendum would be required to be held “not less than 40 nor more than 60 days” after the last possible date of withdrawal of the petition by the petitioners. Such a special election would cost Ridgewood taxpayers approximately $40,000 to $45,000.

It would be unfortunate if there have been conversations between the petitioners and residents during which the petitioners incorrectly asserted that there would NOT be an additional cost incurred because of their efforts to overturn the bond ordinance. If necessary, the village should plan to take steps to correct any such misstatements and provide any signatories who were influenced by such misstatements with information on how to withdraw their signatures from the petition.

Our bond counsel will be at the Wednesday council meeting to discuss the rescission of the BCIA ordinance, as well as the time frames applicable to any petition of the village’s $11.5 million parking deck bond ordinance and a potential resulting referendum. Please attend if you are interested in hearing more.

Roberta Sonenfeld

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