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Growth is necessary- responsibly. Revitalization is a good thing- when handled by careful, thoughtful people. Please, please come out and vote on Tuesday and elect Voigt, Walsh, and Hache

Vote Ridgewood

Dear Neighbors,
I am writing not simply to express my support for 3 candidates in the council election, but to endorse record participation in the election process.

I am vocally in support of candidates Bernadette Coghlan-Walsh (line 4), Jeff Voigt (line 1), and Ramon Hache (line 8). I have spent a great deal of time speaking with them, and getting to know them. I have a tremendous respect for each one, as do a great number of people who’s opinions I hold in a very high regard. Additionally, I support these 3 because I have personally spoken to them at length regarding the pressing issues that Ridgewood is facing.

Multi family housing, which will affect our schools tremendously, our infrastructure, our water, our police and fire, fields, and village programs. That building at this density and in the proposed locations, is not at all in keeping with the character of this village, and how can we mitigate the irreversible damage that will be caused if, and when, it is completed.

Valley Hospital, and its proposed expansion. It’s utter disregard for the neighborhood that it resides in, and it’s community as a whole. How the hospitals need to modernize must be done while respecting that it is a community hospital residing within a residential neighborhood tucked next to elementary and middle schools.

Being a life long Ridgewood resident, these issues, in conjunction with so many others, weigh heavily on me. Being residents here for decades themselves; the importance of these issues hits home to these 3 as well.

Ramon, Bernie, and Jeff are not a group. They’re not a bloc. They don’t agree with me about everything, they won’t agree with YOU about everything, and they don’t agree with each other about everything, and I like that.

I like to see that they will have to, and have had to, engage in actual conversation with each other, and I know they will welcome conversation with residents. Something that has been deeply, and purposefully lacking in the last 4 years of council interaction.

Unlike the other 3 candidates in this election who have chosen to run as a trio, Bernie, Ramon, and Jeff are beholden to no one. They’re not bought and sold. They’ve signed no pledges making any promises to ANYONE. This is not because they don’t want to see certain projects completed. On the contrary! They would like to see, for example, the garage built. BUT, they’re unwilling to sign a pledge to anyone to make promises. They have the integrity, and the intelligence to know that NO one should ask that of them, and even more importantly, the integrity and intelligence to say no.

I’ve seen them dedicate themselves wholeheartedly to this election process while still being dedicated to their families, friends, and jobs. I know when elected they will see it through. We can expect positive changes. We can expect the sun to come out after 4 years of storms. I, for one, am looking forward to it.

Ultimately, I hope my neighbors and friends DO simply find the time to get out and vote. This election, and its outcome, are crucial to our future, our kids future. What happens in the coming few years will have the ability to change the landscape of this town forever. The history here is so precious, and we are supposed to protect it. Staying home, forgetting, or not participating on Tuesday is leaving that history, and so many of the qualities that make living here special, vulnerable to damage that we can, and should, prevent. I feel it’s our responsibility to vote- even more than a right-It’s our duty. It pains me to know that 2 other candidates running in this election, have either NEVER exercised that right here in town, or have done so less than 5 times in decades of residency. It’s simply too important to have your voice heard, and to use your vote to effect change.

Growth is necessary- responsibly. Revitalization is  a good thing- when handled by careful, thoughtful people. Please, please come out and vote on Tuesday and elect Voigt, Walsh, and Hache to be those people for us.

Polls are open on Tuesday 6am to 8pm. Remind your neighbors, remind your friends. Take an elderly family member to the polls, but please, please don’t stay home.

Melanie Hooban McWilliams

Don’t forget to vote May 10, 2016!!
Voigt, Walsh, Hache!!!

8 thoughts on “Growth is necessary- responsibly. Revitalization is a good thing- when handled by careful, thoughtful people. Please, please come out and vote on Tuesday and elect Voigt, Walsh, and Hache

  1. Well said!!

  2. Unlike some candidates, I always vote.

  3. Janice Willet- voted about 3 times in her tenure in rw. Even never. Why in the world should anyone elect them.

  4. I enjoyed reading Ms. McWilliams’ letter. I applaud her courage in expressing her views openly and not hiding anonymously behind James’s apron strings. I also think she writes well, which makes me think she should be hired to edit the Ridgewood Pravda, I mean Blog, with its 5th Grade English.
    Having said that I disagree with most of the opinions she expressed. Let’s start out with the three candidates she is supporting:
    Bernadette Walsh: I like Bernadette and I think she is sincere. But let us not forget the 7% tax increase happened under her watch. As did the disappearance of $500,000 in quarters from the town coffers. She also supported keeping the part time Village Manager who ran the most inefficient Village Hall in Ridgewood history. Compare that to where we stand with Roberta’s capable management.
    Ramon Hache: Kennedy once said beauty is grace under pressure and here Ramon buckled under pressure. His braggadocio in wanting to take Valley to the mat legally is pandering at its worst. Ramon, face reality, the courts will not let Valley not renew. You are burning our money on a useless legal crusade.
    Jeff Voigt: A very bright person who can do a lot for Ridgewood if he was wasn’t out to out-Trump with his Trumpian appeal to the basest of people’s instincts. What miserable pandering.
    Yes, I support Rich Brooks, Evan Weitz, and Janice Willett. As I mentioned in a letter to the editor, they represent the decent Ridgewood we moved to 47 years ago.. They also have the integrity, intelligence, capability, and courage to move us with confidence into the future. Yes, let us think Ridgewood 2020 and not just fight these rear guard actions. That does no one any good.
    Regarding Ms. McWilliams comments re Valley, the apartments, the garage, etc., I think they ring hollow. I don’t see how these issues could have been discussed more openly allowing EVERYONE an opportunity to express their views. Face it, the Vocalantis are against any change and they think they can preserve Camelot by soaking it in formaldehyde. Believe me that is the best way to ensure killing it. To preserve you have to renew, and renewal and adjusting to change can be painful. But then a painless society is a dead society. Read America’s history. We are not where we are because we have avoided painful choices.

  5. Rurik check your facts. Bernie was the only one who voted no to that tax increase. Your buddy Paul voted yes. Paul was also in office during the quarter caper. He was buddy buddy with Rica the whole time. But lets not forget Rica stole the money not Bernie or Paul.

  6. Thank you, Mr. Hallaby.
    I appreciate your compliments- even though it is obvious that we do not see eye to eye.
    I don’t think I will counter any of the points you made, as I feel the campaigning has, in large part, already been done. I hope to see the results of that on Tuesday.
    All of the candidates will have flaws; mine, and yours. The voting records of Weitz and Willet are painful. It would seem that Mr. Weitz has mastered the art of papering the lovely down town with his tacky signs (this HAS to bother Mrs. Hallaby. Don’t tell me it doesn’t), all while being too busy to ever vote, or attend council meetings, but I digress.
    I only have one point I’d like to respond to.
    You suggest that we would like to preserve Ridgewood to death.
    I am telling you that’s genuinely not the case. We would like to see growth at a reasonable rate, time, and scale. So, no. Not Mayberry, but not Akko either.
    Wouldn’t you rather see us all come to the table together, to find a middle ground, than to see things continue as they have been? I know I would. And I think these candidates Walsh, Hache and Voigt, provide us the best chance.
    You are a gentleman enough to know what has been going on is crass, rude, and uncivil. It has been perpetuated by the council majority, and more than ANYTHING else, I’d like to see it stop.
    Thanks for listening and responding.
    Melanie Hooban McWilliams

  7. Rurik, as usual you are a perfect pompous ass. A vote for Voight, Coghlan-Walsh and Hache is a vote for the village that you moved into in 1969, not the city your candidates of choice wish to create.

  8. Rurik- It is truly amazing how ignorant you can sound when it comes to Valley. For someone to say they love Ridgewood as much as you ( and your wife ) do, it’s absolutely fascinating how you want them to “renew” at any cost to this town. And, it will be costly to not only an entire area around the hospital in the short run, but to the entire town in the long run. So you think it’s worth it ? As “for burning money,” fighting it, give me a break ! With the ridiculous taxes we are already paying, what’s a few extra bucks per household/business per year to fight this ? Completely worth it. Finally, remember this regarding “where we are because we have avoided painful choices.” ANY painful choices have been brought on by Valley’s poor management decisions over a number of years. And an entire town should pay for these ? Really ?

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