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Former Village Manager’s Letter to the Editor Generates Flack


file photo by Boyd Loving

Letter: Ridgewood budget issues remain:

May 7,2017

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, in a recent letter to the editor former Village manager Roberta Sonenfeld looked to undermine the current Village Council on the Village budget . Tony Loving of Ridgewood asked “Doesn’t Ms. Sonenfeld have a formal ethics complaint pending against her? For allegedly using tax revenues inappropriately? And didn’t she resign in a huff? Makes me wonder about both the accuracy and intent of her letter.”

While the idea of a lawsuit was refuted by none other than Jan Philips.Anne LaGrange Loving followed up with some hard evidence “Actually, Jan, yes and yes. For those who are interested in the facts, here are three links to information regarding the ethics violation pending against Ms. Sonenfeld:”…/lawsuits-emerge…/94821932/…/ridgewood-mayor-manager-accused…/…/ridgewood-mayor-and…

Loving went on , “I was in touch with the complainant yesterday, and indeed the matter is still outstanding. It can take up to two years for resolution of these complaints.

And as far as “resigning in a huff,” we all read the letter of resignation, which was made public, and it was not exactly a friendly lovey-dovey letter of resignation.”

Ridgewood village manager resigns, citing ‘contentious’ work environment

Reader says Roberta was a time bomb waiting to explode left behind by the Aronsohn conglomerate


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The Ridgewood News declined to publish this letter to the editor

Ridgewood 3 amigos

Editor, The Ridgewood News:

 Re:  “Planning Board lawsuit dismissed,” The Ridgewood News, October 28, Page A-2.

 Former Ridgewood Mayor Paul Aronsohn’s contention that both his and former Deputy Mayor Albert Pucciarelli’s acceptance of gratis tickets to a political fundraiser, and subsequent attendance at the event, was entirely appropriate based on who else was in attendance, is simply preposterous.

Of those attendees referenced by Mr. Aronsohn (“all five Council members at that time,” “the Village Manager, County Executive, and multiple Freeholders”) only he and Mr. Pucciarelli were full voting members of the Planning Board at that time.  As such, only he and Mr. Pucciarelli were in positions to cast votes on a then pending amendment to the Village’s Master Plan that could have favorably impacted the local real estate developer who provided the gratis tickets.  Neither Mr. Aronsohn nor Mr. Pucciarelli should have set foot in that event venue for any reason whatsoever.

And with respect to Mr. Aronsohn’s claim that Village Attorney Matt Rogers previously advised that “it was both fine and appropriate that we attended as a courtesy to the visiting governor,” you and your reporter should have treated this statement as nothing more than hearsay unless Mr. Aronsohn was willing and able to produce a piece of correspondence or official transcript verifying its authenticity.

Boyd A. Loving

Ridgewood NJ

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Ridgewood News controversial edit of “Letter to the editor” Sparks Furor

BCIA petition OLMC

file photo by Boyd Loving

April 9,2016
the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, The Ridgewood News controversial edit of “Letter to the editor” sparks further controversy on Hudson Garage and  a the referendum at next general election.

Ridgewood News letter: In support of the petition :

According to Gail McLaughlin McCarthy  ,”They edited. We gave them our attorneys contact info and they chose not to call them to fact check. ridiculous. The petition will be submitted April 12. We are confident that if a special election is called, it is because the council majority chooses to spend more money. On top of the $600,000.00 already spent according to Gwenn.

Here is the letter we actually submitted, before the editors got hold of it. We supplied backup of all statements, yet they still edited.

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Writer questions appropriateness of mayor’s monthly column


Writer questions appropriateness of mayor’s monthly column
Friday August 2, 2013, 8:36 AM
The Ridgewood News

Writer questions appropriateness of mayor’s monthly column

Boyd A. Loving

Boyd A. Loving


Boyd A. Loving

To the editor:

In light of concerns voiced by some residents regarding Ridgewood Mayor Paul Aronsohn’s recent interactions with your editorial staff (“Our letters policy,” The Ridgewood News, July 26, page A6), I am prompted to ask whether you should continue publication of Mr. Aronsohn’s monthly “Mayor’s Corner” column.


– See more at:

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Follow Up Re: The Ridgewood News Letter to the Editor


file photo of PJ Blogger reading the Ridgewood News

Follow Up Re: The Ridgewood News Letter to the Editor

James J. Foytlin
The Ridgewood Blog
Ridgewood, New Jersey

Dear Mr. Foytlin:

I am writing as a follow up to North Jersey Media Group’s (NJMG) June 28, 2013 letter posted on The Ridgewood Blog in response to several comments left by blog readers concerning a letter submitted by a resident for publication in the Letters to the Editor section of The Ridgewood News.  It is kindly requested that you post this letter on the blog as well.

It is my understanding that some were disappointed with NJMG’s June 28, 2013 letter because it was not as forthcoming with details as those interested in this matter would have liked.  However, as you likely know, New Jersey has a very strong shield law that is designed to safeguard the newsgathering process and allow our reporters to do their job to the fullest ability.  Information obtained by reporters in the course of their professional activities, including discussions with their sources, is privileged.  NJMG must be cautious with the information it discloses so as not to unintentionally waive this most important safeguard.

NJMG recognizes that some will likely decry this explanation as a way to simply dodge the underlying issues.  However, such complaints are shortsighted.  The shield law is designed to protect the free flow of information to the press.  If the information obtained and the sources consulted in connection with news articles and editorials, such as letters to the editor, are subject to disclosure at the demand of the public, then the willingness to provide information to reporters will quickly evaporate and have a detrimental effect on the amount and quality of information available to the public at large.

However, in light of the fact that Mayor Aronsohn has already identified himself as having contacted The Ridgewood News and without waiving the right to any otherwise privileged information, NJMG would like to state the following:

·         The Ridgewood News was never asked by the Mayor or anyone else in person or by any other means to withdraw, hold, pull or not to publish the resident’s letter;

·         As he himself stated, Mayor Aronsohn contacted The Ridgewood News after a June council meeting to confirm what had already been discussed openly during that public meeting covered by our reporter; to wit, that there was a discrepancy between the letter writer’s statement regarding the village attorney’s advice and what the village attorney’s actual advice was with respect to handling matters in open or closed session.

The Ridgewood News was obligated to hold the resident’s letter until the facts could be confirmed.  While The Ridgewood News does not fact check every letter to the editor, the newspaper would have been remiss by publishing information that it actually knew was not entirely accurate.  Indeed, our courts have held news media liable for publishing letters to the editor that contain inaccurate statements.

As a further point of clarification, the resident was never advised that the letter would be printed in The Ridgewood News in the days immediately following the submission. Rather, newspaper staff contacted the resident for the purpose of confirming the authorship of the submission.  The decision to print any news or opinion letters in The Ridgewood News rests in the sole discretion of NJMG and is further subject to space limitations in the newspaper.

In accordance with the privilege afforded The Ridgewood News under the shield law to safeguard its newsgathering activities and editorial process, NJMG is unable to make its editorial staff available for further inquiry, including personal meetings, to discuss this matter.

Finally, to the extent that any individual or entity has impliedly suggested or explicitly stated that The Ridgewood News succumbed to any pressure from the Mayor or any other public or private figure with respect to publication of the resident’s letter, NJMG unequivocally denies the accusation and the actual facts support that position.

We appreciate the community’s interest in our reporting and for bringing these concerns to The Ridgewood News’ attention.




Robert D. Thompson, Esq.
Corporate Attorney
North Jersey Media Group Inc.
1 Garret Mountain Plaza
P.O. Box 471
Woodland Park, NJ 07424
T: (973) 569-7685
F: (973) 569-7268


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Readers Not Buying North Jersey Media Group denial that letter to editor pulled


file photo Boyd Loving

Readers Not Buying North Jersey Media Group denial that letter to editor pulled

Letters to the editor are signed and by their nature (like editorials and op-ed pieces) represent opinion. Any reader who identifies a factual error or wants to argue a point can write a follow-up letter; this happens routinely in every publication. Dialog and debate are good.

It is not the editor’s role to make sure that all statements in a letter to the editor are accurate as it is in an article or editorial. In most newspapers the top editor would never see letters to the editor before publication at all.

More fact checking in Ridgewood News articles, which are frequently full of errors that could easily have been checked, would be most welcome. But letters to the editor? No.

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Even the Bergen Record noticed its been 14 years


Even the Bergen Record noticed its been 14 years

Ridgewood NJ , In the Record’s recent editorial Failure to disconnect even the far left leaning Bergen Record had to admit ,”were the Village Council and the municipal administration? No one knew for at least 14 years that a council or Planning Board member had improper contracts with the town?

And as a readers so eloquently said ,”So let me get this straight, Mayor Aronsohn who voted for letting Riche do the work is now saying it was illegal. Then why did he vote YES! He was the one who gave approval NOT Riche. It’s like a cop tells me I can buy some pot and then arrests me for smoking it!

The Record: Failure to disconnect
Friday, June 7, 2013
The Record

A COUNCIL member should not do business with the municipal government he represents. That principle is not hard to grasp.

But for some inexplicable reason, it was not followed in Ridgewood, where Councilman Thomas Riche has had a long-standing business relationship with the village through his telecommunications firm, Extel Communications.