Friday, September 3, 2010

Freeholder Meetings Now on TV36

I had long ago complained that the regular Freeholder meetings should be aired on TV36 instead of the self-aggrandizing Freeholder Forum show.  Flipping through the channels last night, I accidentally picked up a recent Freeholder meeting being aired on TV36.  I"m not sure if airing Freeholder meetings is new to TV36, but it was a first for me.

Ironically, when I tuned in, Jonathan Williams of the UCIA's darling law firm, DeCotiis Fitzpatrick, was at the podium explaining how the $45 million bond for the renewable energy program would be paid back.  At one point he said something to the effect of "Do you want to pay 100% for the electricity or 75%".   He also said that under the model, in Morris County, a 25%, reduction had been delivered to those who received the solar arrays.  Both of these statements are false and impossible.   

I'm sure what the attorney meant was that any energy purchased would have to be sold to the participating local units at 25% less than regular electric rates.  Therefore the savings is no where near 25%  vs. 100%.  Was that a stupid mistake by the attorney or a deliberate misstatement?  Whatever the answer is, it's troubling. 

With respect to Morris County, again the lawyer stated a 25% reduction had been delivered.  Again, I think what he meant was that the contract calls for a 25% reduction in any energy purchased by the Morris County participants.  The attorney's statement that 25% had been delivered would make one think that Morris County is already up and running and receiving their "25%" savings, which it is not.  

Not one freeholder asked for clarification of the 25% vs. 100% bogus remarks.  Later, the freeholder who did make remarks said nothing of importance.  They talked about Musicfest and other recreational events.  Imagine that?  During a recession and this is what they want to talk about.  Chairman Sullivan indicated that he knew who the headline band would be for Musicfest, but that he was keeping it a secret.  I doubt even one Union County taxpayer is sitting on the edge of his seat waiting for that announcement.  Truly ludicrous.

There was a speaker who came from New York.  Apparently, this speaker was a first-time vendor who built and delivered a truck to the County, which truck was rejected by the County.  The reason he gave for coming to the meeting was that despite his repeated attempts to communicate or meet with the County, he has been ignored.  He seemed nice enough and sincere in his efforts to try and resolve the issue without resorting to litigation.  He was practically begging for the Freeholders' intervention to work with him.  The County lawyer later simply indicated that the specifications for the vehicle were not met.  Regardless of specification dispute, it's appalling if this man's requests to resolve the issue with the County have been ignored.      . 

At the end of the meeting, Chairman Sullivan wanted to talk about snide remarks.  Thankfully the tape cut out shortly after he started his ridiculous remarks.

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