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Council Candidate Bernadette Coghlan-Walsh : “To disregard the resident’s voice, is to disregard the process”

Bernie Walsh
April 6,2016
the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood Nj, Council Candidate Bernadette Coghlan-Walsh ,released the following statement to the Ridgewood blog on the Planning Broad Special Public Meetings , “While I applaud all the members of the Planning Board for their dedication and hard work, I feel they fell short of representing the residents last evening.  As PB attorney Katie Razin stated in her comments, each member of the Planning Board should be deliberating on the process based on the facts presented and public approval.  I interpreted that as examine the evidence and listen to public comment and decide for yourself as to whether or not the public approves of this expansion plan.   The residents who showed up this past week and en masse last night, in my opinion from their statements into the record, were not in approval of this mediation agreement.  To disregard the resident’s voice, is to disregard the process. “

34 thoughts on “Council Candidate Bernadette Coghlan-Walsh : “To disregard the resident’s voice, is to disregard the process”

  1. “facts presented and public approval”
    Maybe they examined the facts and felt differently than the 8 year old boy that thinks Valley is just too big.
    Maybe they examined the facts and weren’t swayed by the children that were used as props.
    Maybe they examined the facts and decided they needed to represent all of the residents, not just the vocal minority that years ago purchased their homes close to the Hospital.

  2. Town is at each other’s throats.,,likely to get even uglier ..if that is even possible,,Mayor and his cabal got the ball rolling years ago…Valley issue are the most serious issues coming to a boil now. garage and multi family proponents will try to slip in even more damaging items while the focus seems to be on valley now,These are people not to be underestimated with their damaging agendas given their short time left in office now.

  3. Then maybe she should not have abandoned her term and completed the process when it counted.

  4. RT Maybe they didn’t examine the facts AT ALL, which certainly seems more like it. The truth is if they had they would have easily come to the conclusion that expanding Valley is not in the best interest of Ridgewood. Why you, or anyone else, would be dumb enough to not see what negative long term effects this could easily have on the town is beyond me.

  5. Don’t create your own “facts”. I do not live near the hospital and I am against the expansion. It will have a big impact on our community and the consequences are too great.

  6. Abandoned her term???? Check your facts.

  7. Fact is we had a valley supporter on the mediation team trying to defend us against the lawsuit. Councilwoman Hauck was a plant from the git-go, she was put in office to get this valley thing through, she was put on the mediation team, and all the while she was giving bundles of bucks to Valley and Valley was donating to her campaign. You can’t make this shit up.

  8. People tell me to vote for Bernie. But I love Ridgewood and she did abandon Ridgewood when it counted. And that is painful for me to confront. I have my own brain and gut feelings and can no longer feel good about Bernadette Couglin Walsh, no longer “Bernie” for me.

  9. If you are worried about GH who was planted for valley, be careful about Richard Brooks – he is being planted by the same developers and Valley, who have influenced the planning board for past few years. Gail Price – the planning board attorney is his spouse.

  10. Was public approval one of the reasons Walsh raised taxes when she was in office too? I dont remember a big public outcry for higher taxes. Tax and spend Walsh will NEVER get my vote.

  11. 8:56am, your maudlin performance is nothing but a political hit job. You are a “concern troll” seeking to sow disenchantment with poorly informed Ridgewood residents. Get a new gig.

  12. Correct me if I’m wrong but the vast majority, & quite possibly all of the speakers the other night lived within a 6 block radius of the hospital. That’s fine and it’s their right to speak up but this group is the vocal minority and doesn’t speak for all Ridgewood’s residents.

    Stuyvesant High School in NYC somehow manages year after year to be ranked as one of the best high schools in the country (higher ranked then Ridgewood by the way) despite being located 1/2 block away from a 6 lane highway and 4 blocks from the Freedom tower complex. Talk about a “big building” looming over a school! Are the city kids smarter then ours? I don’t think so. That said, I think that they are probably emotionally tougher and aren’t bathed in entitlement like many of our kids. The student who spoke the other night voicing her concerns of having “nowhere” to hang out with her friends after school if the expansion is allowed is a good example. A sense of entitlement is a dangerous and damaging thing to instill in our kids…I guarantee it won’t serve them well later in life.

    I think its time to accept that change is coming (all over town) and work together as a community to minimize adverse impacts. If it’s really “all about the kids” (which we all know it isn’t, but whatever), it’s high time to act like grown ups and join the process to make sure that the kids are kept safe during the various construction projects that look to be moving forward.

    Last thought – The hospital has been in Ridgewood since the 50’s and has grown a lot over time. I’d be curious to know if the property value increases of houses on Steilen, Linwood and North Van Dien have been hurt over the years since the hospital was originally built. It’s a fact that buyers can expect an x-percent discount for buying directly beside a hospital (or train tracks, or a busy road like Linwood, or supermarket, or in a flood plain, etc). If a buyer is willing to put up with “the issue” they will be rewarded with “more house”, a win win. I bet their isn’t much distinction in potential buyers minds between the hospital as it is now and how it will after the expansion. If you’re willing to live next to a hospital, you’re willing to live next to a hospital. Don’t worry, nobody’s house value is going to plummet 20-30%, it just won’t.

    1. Ridgewood is not NYC

  13. My vote is definitely for Bernie Walsh! She is a class act and probably one of the most honest council people we have ever had. Thank God she decided to run again we need her desperately.

  14. Feel the Bern !

  15. I thought “public approval” was explained to mean public approval of the process of the hearings. That the hearings went according to lawful process.

    Public approval of the renewal of the hospital is very tricky. To find out how the public feels there would have to be a vote on Valley renewal/expansion for the entire town. Some residents approve the renewal.

    I am , as I have stated at the hearings, against the renewal as I feel thes ix year construction period is detrimental to a large portion of the neighborhood and when finished aesthetically out of character with the surrounding houses.

  16. I stand corrected. She completed one term and left to run for County Freeholder, and lost. Now 2 years later she wants back in and has the nerve to criticize the process? She had her 4 years and left during a critical time to pursue other ambitions. I don’t know why anyone would vote for her.

  17. You may not but other than Jeff Voigt she is the only one I’d bet would protect Ridgewood. She left because she and Richie were treated miserably by the trio and while maybe she should have thicker skin, I believe she has Ridgewood’s best interest at heart. And her departure gave us Susan…thank God for her!

  18. Continued from previous comment: The judge who sided in favor of Valley did so not on the basis of Ridgewood residents approval or disapproval, but on the basis that Valley benefits the whole region and that is more important any negatives to the surrounding Ridgewood neighborhood.

    That is where I disagree: the construction and final product of the hospital together will be a huge negative impact for Ridgewood. Furthermore we have access to many hospitals and doctors. We do not need Valley at all , in my opinion. I , for one, in the main use NYC doctors who actually have offices in major hospitals in NYC.

  19. 8.54. Assume no recourse available for this wise since continuing to hold office not the issue..we should claw back her salary and any benefits

  20. If Bernie had run does anyone think we would see all the Valley girl article on this blog? We give the Mayor a hard time about higher aspirations, but she’s the only one whose aspirations for higher office hurt us in the long run.

  21. Bernie Walsh served her full four-year term, 2010-14. She chose not to run for reelection in 2014 because she wanted to run for Freeholder. She did run, she lost, and now she is running for council again. That’s abandoning Ridgewood?

    The comment at 8:56 AM represents a typical ploy used in marketing: “I used to approve of X, but gee, I can’t any more, and I’m sad.” We have seen it all over this blog and it’s going to return in force. Folks, please be aware as the council campaign heats up that not every comment on this blog is sincere. Cynical manipulation of this type is one disadvantage of anonymity.

  22. 8:56
    I disagree with your interpretation.. BUT in The absence of any one else, what do you do? Jeff V is excellent. But that’s IT! So if you just vote for him, you’re sort of giving one to the other guys. I don’t know. If all of these elections are about the lesser of 2 (3,4,5,6) evils, isn’t she the accidental right choice then? I like her and she has my vote, but I mean given your opinions.

  23. 8:56….abandoned us? She pulled 4 LONG years with Paul Aronsohn, and 2 long years with Pucc and Gwenn pecking at her. I’m sorry, but I don’t think you can ask more from anyone!!! She is willing to get back in there and try to reverse and fix some of this shit that’s going on. Who else would you vote for? Richard Brooks? Willette or Weitz? Please, please, don’t put the blame on her, she needed to get out and away from these awful people. Sedon and Knudsen have been in it for 2 years so far with these 3 bozos, do a check with them and see how worn and exhausted they feel, try to have some understanding, empathy.

  24. Walsh did not abandon us. She ran for office to serve us at the county level. That is a huge personal task.

    I thank her for trying.

  25. 9:45- Was Stuyvesant next to a construction sight for 7 plus yrs.? Regarding the housing situation in the neighborhood around Valley. the
    last time this happened at least two doctors purchased houses close to the hospital in anticipation of the last go round going through. One was going to rent his property out, and the other did not want to put up with the traffic mess. They sold when it did not happen. The risk being ignored is the strong possibility of turning that neighborhood into what you now have around Morristown Memorial, St. Joe’s and HUMC. So why would the town of Ridgewood even take that chance ? You know what you have, why risk it ?

  26. We get the government deserving of a low number of turnout community,
    Like the Petition committee we all ned to step up and get out the vote..where we are is in part due to low voter turnout..worse Guys and Gals seem to weasel into the town government,then chaos reigns..

  27. Change is coming…? Yeah. No. And no. Not all speakers the other night were within a 6 block radius.
    And if they were? So what. You prove your idiocy saying things like that.
    House values WILL drop/-if they can sell at all

  28. 5:41
    OK, 99% of speakers, you got me!
    “And if they were? So what. You prove your idiocy saying things like that.”
    Why exactly am I an “idiot” for pointing out that a VERY vocal minority is hell bent to “STOP VALLEY”?
    Heck it’s the CCR’s slogan.

    “House values WILL drop/-if they can sell at all”. Hyperbolic Hyperbole much? Ever consider that some of those fat cats making “millions” at Valley might want to walk to work? Or maybe some doctors, nurses, administrators, etc… might want a short commute too? Please stop being so myopic!

    Bottom line, YES, if you live directly next to Valley & you’re planning to get out of dodge in the next 6 years, you’re probably going to take a bit of a hit because of the construction. Nothing crazy, but you’ll take a hit. If on the other hand, you’re a committed life long Ridgewood resident and you’re plan all along wasn’t to bail the second you could, you’ll do just fine! Having a modern, high tech hospital within Ridgewood is a positive to A LOT of people in town. Especially rich older folks who’s kids are grown. Expand your thinking, this won’t hurt nearly as much as you think! Just my 3 cents 🙂

  29. 7:42- Don’t live near there, but I hope you are right. The fear is that someone decides that if the town doesn’t care, and if the hospital doesn’t care, then why should I care. They rent out their property to whoever and watch it all go south, making a nice profit along the way, and then selling. If that starts it’s hard to stop. It happened in Morristown and Hackensack, so to say it can’t happen in Ridgewood is very naive.

  30. 7:42 glad you’re so sure.
    Sounds to me like you’re NOT a lifer.
    This is not a vocal minority. THAT is the hyperbole that you find helpful to drag your opinion (because none of what you said is actually any bring more than an opinion) all around to anyone who will listen to you.
    If people really don’t care about valley doing this because they don’t live close, that’s fine. But that’s a different reason than actually supporting it.
    Actively supporting it is bigger than not giving a crap because it’s not in your exact back yard. 2 different things.

  31. 10:25
    You’re absolutely right, until I pass away I guess I won’t know if I’m really a lifer or not.
    It’s just a fact that the majority of CCR are Travell parents, the vocal minority.
    The reason that most people (myself included) won’t go out on a limb publicly to support the expansion is 2 fold. First, I always thought that if/when this issue was brought before a neutral third party that the right decision would be made. And that’s exactly what looks like is happening now with the judge. Second, the CCR has framed this debate as one where you either love your kids or you support the greedy monsters at Valley who want to “destroy” our town with the expansion just so they can have their name on it. The bullying is intense for people who don’t share the view that the expansion will kill property values and our kids. Frankly I’m sick of the drama and insanity. It’s time to come together, figure out the best way forward and move on.

    And James, I’m fully aware Ridgewood isn’t NYC. I also know the “Ridgewood” in a lot of peoples minds hasn’t existed for a very long time.

  32. Bill H. where did you find the business model where you rent out your property to whoever, watch it all go south, and then make a nice profit along the way?

  33. RT- Easy, it’s done everyday all over America. Applying it to the VH situation, all you have to do is take a look around the neighborhood’s where you have “regional medical centers.” Do you think those neighborhoods, and the expanded areas around them, started out that way ? The bottom line is you will be able to rent the houses in that area pretty easily.

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