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Ridgewood Board of Education has still not made provisions for taxpayers without computers to make comments during their virtual public meetings

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Boyd A. Loving

Ridgewood NJ, I am extremely disappointed that the Ridgewood Board of Education (BOE) has still not made provisions for taxpayers without computers to make comments during their virtual public meetings.  As of today, the only way a taxpayer can make a public comment during a virtual BOE meeting is to submit it in writing via a hyperlink posted on the BOE’s website (the hyperlink is also embedded in the electronically circulated meeting notice).

Although BOE President Jennie Smith Wilson claims their legal counsel approved of this process, I believe it to be unlawful as it fails to provide an opportunity for any taxpayer to make a public comment during a scheduled open public meeting.  Not everyone is streaming the meeting via computer, nor does everyone have access to  a computer – taxpayers without access to computers are able to watch scheduled meetings on cable TV (FIOS and Cablevision/Optimum).

The Ridgewood Village Council provides a phone number to call during their public meetings for taxpayers wishing to make public comments, but who don’t have access to a computer.  Why isn’t the BOE willing to do the same?  Is their legal counsel certain that restricting the acceptance of public comments to “in writing via an electronic process only” fulfills all requirements of the State’s Open Public Meetings.

9 thoughts on “Ridgewood Board of Education has still not made provisions for taxpayers without computers to make comments during their virtual public meetings

  1. Egos.

  2. They’re so clueless at Cottage Place they probably don’t realize that there are people who pay taxes that don’t use computers. What a bunch of buffoons.

  3. “Comments or questions can be submitted prior to and during the public hearing through the link in the section below.”

    This method enables the Board to maintain complete control over public comment. Nothing is unexpected, every comment is known in advance, even if only moments in advance. Complete control is what the Board likes the most. They are control freaks to the max. Mark my words, even after the pandemic crisis lifts, they will retain this method for submitting public comment.

  4. Well if Danny Boy Creed gets elected you will have to submit dna samples before submitting a comment to prove your identity. Oh well never mind. He won’t get elected because he will be in a straight jacket at Bergen Pines by the end of this week.

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  5. If you don’t have a computer how can you comments on the blog?

  6. “Well if Danny Boy Creed gets elected you will have to submit dna samples before submitting a comment to prove your identity.”. . . . . . . . . Maybe the best comment I’ve ever seen on the blog. Hysterical.

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  7. Where is the budget presentation and the tax increase information on the BOE’s website?

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  8. The mayor of Ridgewood, Ramon Hache, posts his daily COVID -19 updates on Facebook.

    Why is that ok but it’s not ok that BOE accepts comments by computer?

    Even people WITH computers are not all on Facebook, yet I don’t hear any complaints about that.

    During Super storm Sandy cleanup, we received updates by phone, that is the most inclusive form of communication by village officials.

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  9. the Fish is fried.

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