Tom Ballistreri and Manny Aponte, Republican candidates for Atlantic County Freeholder, today accused their Democrat opponents of ?blatant political posturing with their allegations that the county has been lax in maintaining and improving its road network.?
?We challenge Freeholder Alisa Cooper to cite a single instance in her three years on the board when she brought to the attention of her colleagues a transportation problem that required attention,? Ballistreri and Aponte said. ?Now, as a candidate for re-election, Cooper and her running mates are attempting to create an issue where none exists by issuing dishonest and misleading statements.?
?She has attacked the very board on which she has been sitting for the past three years, despite her failure to bring any of her supposed concerns to the board and ask for action,? they said.
The Republicans said the county administration ?has a comprehensive transportation construction and improvement plan in place and has been diligent in addressing needs throughout the county rapidly and effectively.?
Freeholder Frank Sutton, chairman of the Board?s roads and bridges committee, pointed out that the county has implemented more than $25 million in road improvements in the past eight years and has been the driving force behind numerous state projects such as the $30 million reconstruction of the dilapidated Delilah Road Bridge and the intersection of Tilton Road and Route 9.
Noting that Cooper singled out the intersection of Fire Road and Mill Road in Egg Harbor Township as a case in point, Aponte said the county received approval of a $5 million state grant last year to improve the intersection and is currently awaiting the appropriate permits to clear the way for work to begin.
Ballistreri, Aponte and Sutton cited the major improvements made at the intersection of Tilton and Pomona roads on the border of Hamilton, Galloway and Egg Harbor townships as another instance in which the county responded to enhance the safety of the motoring public.
Moreover, they said, the county completed a $10 million project to correct a drainage problem on Tilton Road that had been a source of concern for many years.
?Perhaps Cooper should pay more attention when she attends Freeholder Board meetings so she could remain informed about action being taken,? Ballistreri and Aponte said, ?not just on the Fire Road project but on other transportation projects being undertaken.?
?It is, unfortunately, a pattern of Cooper?s behavior to throw unsubstantiated claims and accusations around in public as a part of her political strategy,? Ballistreri and Aponte said. ?When her phony allegations are revealed for what they are and collapse, she offers no explanation. It is politics and politics alone — not truth — which motivate her.?