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Ridgewood Village Manager Roberta Sonenfeld’s behavior seems out of step with the Nonpartisan Nature of the Village Government


April 18,2016

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, Village Manager Roberta Sonenfeld recent behaviors seems out of step with the The Faulkner Act, the municipal charter the Village of Ridgewood is organized around .
According to Wikipedia , The Faulkner Act, or Optional Municipal Charter Law, provides for New Jersey municipalities to adopt a mayor–council government.

This form of government provides for election of a mayor and five, seven, or nine council members. All council members may be elected at large, or some may be elected by wards; they may be partisan or nonpartisan, and serve four-year concurrent or staggered terms. There may be up to ten administrative departments.

As in all Faulkner Act municipalities, citizens in the mayor–council system enjoy the right of initiative and referendum, meaning that proposed ordinances can be introduced directly by the people without action by the local governing body. This right is exercised by preparing a conforming petition signed by 10% of the registered voters who turned out in the last general election in an odd-numbered year. Once the petition is submitted, the local governing body can vote to pass the requested ordinance, and if it refuses, it is then submitted directly to the voters. (

While Village Manager Roberta Sonenfeld was introduced with much over the top hype reader quickly concluded that she was more of a partisan hack than a Village Manager .

Readers say Honeymoon Over for the New Village manager

I knew someone would get around to blaming Gabbert. Its not the council fault when something goes wrong. They only take the credit when something goes right and that is far and few.

This is the same Roberta Sonenfeld who was getting such praise when she was appointed.Looks like the “partisan hack” criticism was all true .

So what your saying is that are new hand pick Village Manager didn’t notify the Council because the past Village Manager had an arranged it that way. Really. A Village Manage with any background on that intersection should have brought it to the Council especially when they live on the West Side and should be familiar with that route. This is not on the job training. Next you are going to tell us that our mayor is going to use a page from our president book. “I only found out about this when he watched the news.” Please

This election cycle seems to have brought out everyone’s worst fears bordering on out and out interference with the electoral process.

Whether its disrupting petition drives or making nasty comments on Facebook Village Manager Roberta Sonenfeld has been to many acting out of step with the previous nonpartisan nature of the Village government .

Reader , “Roberta has been ‘liking’ nasty posts on Facebook. Looks like gloves are completely off with her and she is fully in campaign mode. This is the lowest point in village history that I have seen in over 15 years. Village Managers have never been so much active in politics and elections.”