September 10, 2007
Democrat Committeeman Bill Beyers may have violated ethics guidelines when he voted to appoint his son to the Hamilton Township Zoning Board of Adjustment.
Citing the need to restore open and honest government to Hamilton Township, candidates Roger Silva, Amy Gatto and Joseph Nickels today demanded that Committeemen Bill Beyers, James Link and Mayor Tom Palmentieri immediately withdraw their action on the appointment.
The 3-2 vote at Tuesday?s Sept. 4th meeting pitted two elected officials (Gaskill ? D, Pritchard ?R) against the appointed Beyers (D) and Link (D), as well as Mayor Palmenteiri (D), with the Beyers vote settling the controversial issue. Beyers ignored the advice of Gaskill and Pritchard in postponing the vote until a thorough investigation could be completed and their objections that Beyers? son, Clint, was the only candidate being considered for the position.
?This is a blatant display of nepotism and politics at its worst,? remarks Joe Nickels. ?What makes it particularly repugnant is the fact that Committeeman Beyers? vote was the deciding vote in an otherwise 2-2 standoff. The fact that this appointment is an unpaid position is irrelevant. Money isn?t the only corrupting factor in politics and any implication that it is, quite frankly, is insulting to the residents of our community and all of New Jersey!? he continued.
Amy Gatto added, ?We should be striving for the highest level of integrity and transparency in our government. When people feel government can?t be trusted, we drive them away from the polls. This appointment doesn?t pass the simplest smell test.? Gatto continued, ?An ethical government recognizes quality and competent appointments and doesn’t allow nepotism to play a role in what is intended to be a fair and open process for all.”
Roger Silva stated, ?What bothers me is the quality of willing citizens who regularly attend township meetings who have been passed over time and again for similar appointments regardless of their labor or professional backgrounds. Imagine the message you are now sending to these folks when you boldly cast the deciding vote in an appointment for your own son. Is Hamilton Township truly open and honest to all? Absolutely not and it?s time to return government to the people.?