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URGENT ELECTION ALERT Big money and outside interests seek overdevelopment from within

election signs

May 5,2018

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, This message is being distributed by Ridgewood Citizens for Reasonable Development, Concerned Residents of Ridgewood, Friends of Schedler, and The Preserve Graydon Coalition.
Information obtained today has led four major grassroots groups to create a joint statement for our constituencies.

“Alexandra Harwin’s campaign for Village Council was revealed today to have paid substantial sums to a public relations and marketing firm that prepares communities for large-scale real estate development.
The public relations company describes itself as “assessing the political landscape for real estate development” ( One project shown on company founder Matthew Krayton’s LinkedIn page is the downtown redevelopment initiative of the City of Hackensack. Unlike Hackensack, we do not want–we cannot absorb–more large-scale high-density development downtown.
Such firms do not come cheap. How much did it cost?

Public filings required of all candidates ( show that as of April 27–11 days before the election–the Harwin campaign had received nearly $25,000 in donations, surely unprecedented in Ridgewood, and had paid nearly $10,000 to the above-mentioned firm for direct-mail and Facebook advertising. All but three of the largest donations came from out of state. Again, this is new. Are we comfortable having outsiders influence our election?

In contrast, through April 27, Susan Knudsen’s campaign received $6,695 and Michael Sedon’s $5,500, all from local residents.

Repeated libelous accusations–once again, never before seen in Ridgewood–are typical, bullying, developers’ tactics. Very little is said in the campaign literature, and for good reason, about the challengers’ attributes. Pounding the incumbents with fictional insults does not accurately represent our Village. We must resist being dragged along through the mud.

Those of us who have seen the hate-mailers may not soon forget them, and not in a good way. Those who have not seen them are lucky. Notably, the images and nasty messages do not appear on the candidates’ websites.
Despite weeks of character assassination from the opposition, our incumbents have remained civil, in the long tradition of this Village.

The Village Council for the next four years will play a significant role in overseeing our first Master Plan rewrite in 35 years. The Master Plan becomes the guidebook and blueprint for decades to come. We must protect our Master Plan from meddling by outside interests, including developer-friendly groups that are right now seeking overlay zones to allow multifamily development in single-family neighborhoods.We know that Susan Knudsen and Mike Sedon will protect us.

For the future of our Village, please share this message via email, social media, on the phone, and in person. PLEASE VOTE on Tuesday, May 8. Polls are open from 6am to 8pm.
If you have any questions, please email us at “