Whelan Just Doesn’t Get It on Over-Development

?While Assemblyman Jim Whelan promises to fight sprawl and over development, he has taken $9,000 in campaign contributions from builders groups who have sued communities to force them to accept massive new residential housing,? Republican State Sen. James ?Sonny? McCullough said today.

?It?s the ultimate in hypocrisy,? McCullough said of Whelan?s taking $6,000 from the Builders League and $3,000 from the South Jersey Builders PAC.

The South Jersey Builders have filed suit against Egg Harbor Township, where McCullough serves as Mayor, in an effort to overturn zoning ordinances aimed at regulating and controlling further development.

?I was instrumental in winning approval of the tougher zoning ordinances while Jim Whelan, on the other hand, takes campaign cash from developers who have brought suit against the community to defeat the ordinances,? McCullough said. ?Whelan has aligned himself with those who want to force more housing on the community which will lead to greater demands on municipal and school district services and inevitably result in higher property taxes.?

McCullough said the builders have also filed suit against the town to abolish the impact fees levied on developers to pay for recreational facilities.

?These groups are supporting Whelan with their campaign donations while doing their utmost to weaken zoning regulations and controls,? McCullough said. ?Sprawl, traffic congestion and higher property taxes are the inevitable result. By accepting their campaign cash, Whelan has made it clear he stands with the builders and against the community and its taxpayers.?

He pointed out that Whelan also supports the elimination of a state program which permits a municipality to shift its affordable housing obligation to another municipality.

?Again, prohibiting such action will only force even greater residential development into places like Egg Harbor, Galloway and Hamilton townships, driving up property taxes,? he said.

?Whelan has spent two years in the Legislature and has accomplished nothing in the way of providing tax relief to the growth zone communities in Atlantic County,? McCullough said. ?Taking $9,000 in campaign cash from builders and developers only means he?ll continue to do nothing — except represent their interests rather than the taxpayers.?

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