Atlantic County Freeholder at large candidate Joe McDevitt today suggested that the first candidates? debate of the county election campaign concentrate on the county budget and the debate should be between his opponent, Democrat Freeholder Joe Kelly, and his running mate, Sheriff Jim McGettigan, Democrat candidate for County Executive.

?These two candidates, running on the same ticket, have diametrically opposed views of the county?s budget,? McDevitt said. ?While McGettigan has criticized the budgets, claiming overspending and higher taxes, Kelly has been a consistent supporter of it.?

?The taxpayers of Atlantic County deserve to know which of the two speaks for their party,? McDevitt said. ?Is McGettigan right and Kelly wrong? Or is Kelly right and McGettigan wrong??

McDevitt noted that at one point McGettigan said that Kelly had been hoodwinked into supporting the budget.

?Does Kelly feel he?s been tricked?? he asked ?And, if so, by whom? Does Kelly agree with McGettigan that the budget is overspending and, if so, he should explain his consistent support for it.?

?It?s a taxpayer friendly budget, in my opinion, and in the opinion of the independent auditors,? McDevitt said. ?The county, through Executive Dennis Levinson?s leadership, has cut the tax rate to its lowest point in history while still providing excellent services and preserving more open space.?

?The fact remains that McGettigan, Kelly, and the Democrat Party can?t have it both ways,? McDevitt said. ?And, the only way to resolve it is for the two of them to debate in an open forum in front of the taxpayers. Let?s find out which of them speaks for the ticket.?


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