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The Right Choice for Howell's Future

Howell residents have clear choice for Mayor and Council this November, and that choice is Bill Gotto and Ed Guz.

Dear Howell Residents:

With election season reaching a conclusion in the next few weeks, it is obvious that it has become a tale of two candidates.  While I have spent the past three years working tirelessly to solve problems in Howell, my opposition, William Field has been making his way around town pointing out everything he believes is wrong with our community and then blames everyone on the Township Council for the problems.

On the topic of traffic, he admitted that he rarely drives south of Aldrich Road on Route 9, but said we should “nuke” our neighbors in Jackson so they don’t clog up our roads.  His solution was to build a multi-million dollar exit ramp on Interstate 195 to keep people out.  I personally like our neighbors from Jackson, and especially the money they spend shopping in Howell.

Field’s next move was to tell everyone we need more businesses in Howell, an idea he heard during my presentation to the Chamber of Commerce.  Of course he offered no plans to support business development and when asked, did not know whether adding sewers or water in our commercial corridors was a good thing.  Meanwhile, the current Council has been expanding permitted uses and revising zoning in all of our economic corridors, creating the office of community development to ease the permit and application process for businesses, and partnered with business organizations to promote the possibilities that Howell has to offer.

And recently Mr. Field noted that his neighborhood has vacant homes that should be rehabilitated instead of encouraging more development.  Once again, his lack of involvement is obvious.  He is not aware that we have initiated a campaign to rehabilitate existing homes as part of our affordable housing obligations, and was not in the audience when we passed a residential property maintenance code which now addresses the deteriorated conditions of which he speaks.

All of Mr. Field’s comments have come when it is opportunistic for him to attempt to gain votes.  He had not attended any meetings or been involved in any public discussions since 2006 when he says he was a candidate for Council (the truth is that he was only a candidate for a charter study to change our form of government).  Until the past three months, Mr. Field has not been bothered to put his opinion on the record when it was most needed.  He is quick to point out the problems, but offers no solutions or plans.  As a professor of government and a Howell resident for 18 years, I expected more from him as a candidate.

My candidacy has mirrored my experience as an elected official.  I will continue to provide permanent solutions to tough issues, spend conservatively to stabilize taxes, raise revenue to offset homeowner tax obligations, and to work with my fellow elected officials to not only survive this economic crisis but to lay the foundation for us to thrive in the future.  Elected officials are responsible for planning and implementing ideas, something Mr. Field unfortunately has yet to demonstrate any ability or experience.

My running mate Ed Guz and I respectfully ask for your support on election day so we can continue to work for a better Howell Township.

Deputy Mayor William Gotto

Candidate for Howell Township Mayor

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

William Field October 17, 2012 at 05:19 PM
Mr. Gotto: You make many errors in representing my position. 1. I proposed more commercial development a month before your presentation to the Chamber of Commerce. You know that -- you were there for my presentation. 2. Since I live "south of Aldrich Road" (in Candlewood), I DO drive south of Aldrich Road regularly. I shop at the stores brought in by the Economic Development Committee that Mayor Konopka set up. 3. My proposal for rerouting traffic around Aldrich Road has nothing to do with "nuking" Jackson. Fact: rush hour traffic from Jackson is overwhelming the intersection of Aldrich Road and Route 9. YOUR efforts to correct this by fiddling with the traffic light made it worse. The best long term solution is to help Jackson residents avoid that intersection by having the state and federal government add an exit from I-195 to New Prospect Road. I have begun conversations with our Congressmen to pursue this. 4. You completely mis-characterize what I said to the Chamber about water and sewers on Rte 9. Under Mayor Dibella the town agreed to sewer the southern portion of Rte 9 with the owners bearing the cost. Now the town and the residents are paying for that -- major council mistake. I said let's get the southern part of Rte 9 sewers to work before we work on other parts of the road. You know we can't afford to pay for more sewers so stop misrepresenting my position. 5. I ran for Council in 2006. I guess you didn't notice.
William Gotto October 17, 2012 at 06:16 PM
It's amazing as a candidiate how little you actually know about the township you live in. The Route 9 sewers are being paid by the property owners that are serviced by those sewers as part of an assessment that was completed during my first year in office, not the taxpayers. Again, if you were around and involved during the administrations you referenced, you would know these answers. As a professor of government you should know about the roles of municipal officials and that as a state highway, we have no control over Route 9. The "fiddling" I have done is work with state legislators and the DOT to redo the traffic light timing which wil be reviewed once the current paving project has been completed. If you actually attend a meeting and ask a question and you might get the right answers. Regarding your comments on business development, I have only heard you speak once and I only posted what I heard personally. I was at the Chamber of Commerce meeting where you were asked about traffic and made the comment about "nuking" Jackson. You told everyone in attendance you knew little about the southern end of Route 9. And finally, worst of all, if you ran for Council in 2006, why do the official election results not show this? http://www.twp.howell.nj.us/archives/64/General%2011%207%2006.pdf
John Hayes October 17, 2012 at 07:26 PM
Where's Candy Crowley when you need her?
Maria Antonelli October 17, 2012 at 07:36 PM
Howell needs people who care about positive new changes and solutions to old and present issues. I believe that Gotto and Guz are the right candidates who are more than qualified and are hard working people that will help make Howell Township an even better place to live in. As well, we the residents can be proud of the jewel that this town is within Monmouth County. Good luck to Gotto and Guz. No matter who you support, please go out and vote and make good choices.
William Field October 17, 2012 at 08:21 PM
At last! We have a debate starting. Having declined my challenges I wasn't sure if we would be able to connect. To the points: Yes, Rte 9 is a state road. But you stated at the Chamber of Commerce that YOU worked with the DOT to adjust the lights at Aldrich and 9. Regarding the sewers, you also stated at the Chamber of Commerce that the township had intended that the users would be paying the bill for the sewers, but it hadn't quite worked out that way and the taxpayers were paying the bonds, or at least some of them, for the moment. Democrats offered 3 candidates in 2006. Ask Mr. Walsh what happened.
Ken October 18, 2012 at 02:15 AM
Didn't the state already make improvements to the traffic signals on Rt 9, in conjunction with the repaving project? During the first stage of construction, new image detection cameras will be installed at certain intersections to replace the existing, underground loop detectors. These cameras are linked to traffic signals and help maximize the capacity of Route 9, according to a press release. They detect vehicles waiting to enter or cross Route 9 and activate a signal sequence.
Ken October 18, 2012 at 02:30 AM
Did these new changes, in conjunction with the resurfacing change what was done last year for better, or for worse September 29, 2011 Dear Residents, Please be advised that effective today, September 29, 2011, the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) changed the timing on every traffic light on Rt. 9 through Howell Township. Depending on the intersection, the new timing may create backups on Rt. 9 and/or side streets. We will monitor these changes and inform NJDOT of any issues that may arise. Respectfully, Helene Schlegel, MS, MPP, CPM hschlegel@twp.howell.nj.us
Adam Hochron (Editor) October 18, 2012 at 12:22 PM
For what it's worth, we wrote a story when they changed the lights and have an email into the DOT for a possible follow up. http://howell.patch.com/articles/dot-institutes-changes-with-route-9-timing
Stephen Johnson October 18, 2012 at 02:17 PM
As we all know, these last four years have been extremely difficult economically. When Bill Gotto was elected approximately three years ago, he was thrown right into the difficult situation with other newly elected officials and they have had to make very tough decisions on spending, staffing, capital projects, etc. In the last year or two they have shifted from keeping their head above water to looking forward and how we get where we think we need to be in the near to long term future. None of these future issues will be solved overnight, but they have started the process and will continue to do so in the coming year. I've seen the issues and progress as I have personally attended many of the meetings over the last two years and have volunteered to be a planning board member since January to give back to the community. I applaud Bill Gotto's hard work and leadership, and the addition of Ed Guz who has served on the Zoning Board in Howell. Ed is now stepping up to add his professional experience to our Town Council, he'll be a welcome addition.
Ken October 18, 2012 at 03:48 PM
Thanks for that response Adam. Sounds like there was improvement as a result of the timing changes. I don't know if this is a correct intrepretation of Sgt Marculics comment? Can you tell us what the email to the DOT is about? I think part of the problem is the traffic going across, or turning onto Rt 9 from some of the "major intersections" like Aldrich Road . I don't know how long that light delays Rt9 N & S bound, but I'm thinking that the cameras, in place of the ingroung loops are supposed to help in that regard If you're going west on aldrich Road East and want to get on Rt9 North, there is a "bypass ramp". There is no bypass if you want to go onto Rt 9 South from Aldrich road West. The Same is true at the Salem Hill Road interesction (I hope I didn't get anybody confused)
Eddie October 18, 2012 at 06:06 PM
I WAS going to vote for Gotto until I read his stupid comments. Jackson traffic is a MAJOR problem on Aldrich Road. As a TAXPAYING HOWELL resident who also spends family dollars patronizing HOWELL businesses I do NOT like being stuck in traffic on Aldrich Road, I live off Aldrich Road and the traffic snaking from the light all the way down past my development every morning and evening is not acceptable!!!! The garbage such as empty liquor bottles and fast food containers and papers, bottles and cans thrown from the windows of our neighbors from Jackson and probably Howell too lay on our road and flows into the sewers and NEVER gets cleaned up by the township! Additionally, after a 2 hour commute from the city I especially hate having to chug alug along Rt 9 South for 10 minutes or more before I can get off at my stop because of that traffic light! We need to reduce JACKSON Traffic! Also Howell needs to get cracking on making the shoulder a bus lane! This will be the first time in my life I have not voted Republican! Looks like Mr. Field is getting my vote! Maybe we can move the traffic to Gotto's house and see if he likes it!
Eddie October 18, 2012 at 06:36 PM
P.S. And I for one approve of the off-ramp to reduce Jackson traffic! I also object to all the additional new housing creating an influx of cars, people and demands on and people WITHOUT the upgrading of infrastructure. We are becoming Staten Island. Points to ponder - why are Howell politicians allowing sprawl? Are there relationships between the Council and the builders? Would a Federal or State probe find something? With all the new shopping and the taxes collected by the Township why aren't those funds allocated to our Real Estate Tax burden similar to the Freehold Mall monies going to reduce Freehold Twp. RE taxes???? Just wondering aloud! Gov Christie are you listening? Department Of Justice are you reading???
William Field October 18, 2012 at 07:49 PM
When you sit there in the traffic on Rte. 9 South waiting for the Aldrich light to change, go ahead and time the lights. Rte 9 gets 40-45 seconds. The left turn from Aldrich Road to Rte 9 gets 30 seconds. The straight traffic from Aldrich Rd. gets 30 seconds. So... through traffic gets about 45 seconds while cross traffic gets a minute. What gives? My solution: 1. Re- time those lights! The state DOT has not replaced the signals at Aldrich Rd and has not, as far as I can tell, installed camera controls. That has happened at Strickland Road and other roads in the northern part of Rte 9, but not at Aldrich or Salem Hill Rd. 2. Turn the shoulder from I-195 all the way down to Aldrich Rd. into a turn lane to get the Jackson/Glen Arden traffic moving faster. I'm not completely sure this is feasible because of structural issues, but it should be explored. 3. Move the bus stop on Rte 9 S to the other side of Aldrich Rd, across from the Rte 9 N stop. That way the bus doesn't stop the turning traffic. 4. Long term, work with the state and feds to get that new interchange from I-195 to New Prospect St., installed. It's a 10-20 year project but we have to start pushing for it now. We're overwhelming the carrying capacity of the road with the new residential construction (and just wait for the old Cutler-Rubenstein Egg Farm to gain residents), Jackson traffic, and retail destinations. Fiddling won't work much longer.
seventeen October 20, 2012 at 01:05 AM
Councilman Gotto, the people want to know what promises you made to Ms.Taylor when you asked her to 'step-down' and leave the 'race'. Re: www.howellnjonline.com. Tina Smilek Full Posts: 241 Re: Tri-Town - Gotto, Field, Tayor bid for Howell Mayor seat. « Reply #21 on: Today at 08:40:10 PM »Has anyone heard anything from Elaine Taylor? Gotto has seemed to dismiss her in his letter to the residents and call this a 2 man race. I say NEVER underestimate a woman. I respect that she stood her ground even when Gotto asked her to leave the race. I think some fed up residents may just throw their vote to the underdog. She may not have the money of the other candidates, but she debated when asked and clearly has a passion for the town. She also had a following at the debate.
seventeen October 20, 2012 at 03:20 AM
What the hell is going on here? Howell Twp's 'Well-Respected/Selfless-(Over-Qualified?)' Twp. Engineer, Bill Nunziato - Demoted/Fired? Why?? Answers, Councilman Gotto.....the 'people' need answers. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Re: www.howellnjonline.com William Field Newbie Posts: 33 Township Engineer Bill Nunziato « on: Today at 09:12:17 PM »Rumor has it that Mr. Nunziato, the township engineer for over 10 years, is being removed from his post and reassigned to other duties. Rumor continues by indicating that the council and manager are appointing Birdsall Consulting Services to replace him. This happened this morning at a meeting, according to the same rumors.
Advocate October 20, 2012 at 02:41 PM
Re: Bill Nunziato: Is this part of the Morale Problem that Mr. Field has eluded to, at town hall? Will there be another law suit? Only the Manager has the authority to remove department heads, not the council Just at the 10/02/12 council meeting the Mayor was telling Mr. Nunziato what a great job he was doing.. Mayor Walsh.."How Are My Roads"..................?...Good Job.....I hear a lot of good things from the citizens......Good job out there"
Advocate October 20, 2012 at 02:45 PM
Mr. Gotto: "While I have spent the past three years working tirelessly to solve problems in Howell" Rather than attack the other candidate, can you list your accomplishments over the last 3 years .
Emily Jones October 20, 2012 at 04:42 PM
I am from Jackson and I find it extremely offensive that you have chosen to latch onto an obviously light-hearted humorous remark! Field is looking for a solution to the traffic issues - which is completely obscene. Citizens are losing respect for you, based on the idiotic comments you are posting here.
Emily Jones October 20, 2012 at 04:43 PM
This seems to be standard for Republicans in the area. Why is everyone so terrified of debates?
William Field October 20, 2012 at 05:38 PM
I stand partly corrected. Camera detectors have indeed been installed where Salem Hill Rd. and Aldrich Rd. cross Rte. 9. That makes the traffic mess even more alarming.
Advocate October 20, 2012 at 08:11 PM
Mr Field: I guess the question is, how much time is given for vehicles to cross/turn on rt 9 when the cameras detect traffic on Aldrich Road ? How long does N and S bound rt 9 traffic have to wait for vehicles on aldrich road? Is the timing allocated by time of day, or is the same 24/7? AND would it make sense to lower the allocation of time to cross Rt 9 on Aldrich, say from 5 to 7 pm?? I'm sure a quick call/email to DOT could provide an answer..
Advocate October 20, 2012 at 08:16 PM
Additional ?? Do the camaras detect vehicles waiting to turn from Aldrich, and turn on the Left turn arrow, or do they just detect vehicles and go through the complete sequence of left turn for x seconds then allow cross traffic or no left turn if no vehicles detected and shorter cross traffic?? Do the cameras detect turn signal flash or not?
Advocate October 20, 2012 at 08:29 PM
Interesting Info from the WebRe Traffic Control Cameras They may detect when a car arrives at an intersection, when too many cars are stacked up at an intersection (to control the length of the light), or when cars have entered a turn lane (in order to activate the arrow light).
Harold Carry October 23, 2012 at 03:00 PM
It looks like Mr. Gotto no longer want's to be Mayor and has Left the Building
seventeen October 27, 2012 at 03:24 AM
lori taylor (howellnjonline) --- We the people, in Howell, believe that you (Gotto) are hiding behind this 'fictious username' on that site, to benefit your Campaign. Cut-it-out, aready.. it's 'nauseating'.
seventeen October 27, 2012 at 04:36 AM
'Endorsement from Malave' ??? - (Tri-Town News/10-25-2012). What a Joke! Can that be the same guy (Councilman) who tried to leave the state (get out of Jersey) a couple years ago, but couldn't sell his house, cause he 'pulled' too much ($$$) out of it.... and is 'under water'? Omg...what 'tangled webs' we weave!
Gregory Meehan November 05, 2012 at 04:52 AM
Year Mun Tax Rate Yr to Yr Diff % Increase %Cumulative Increase 2009 0.282 0.0160 6.02% 5.99% 2010 0.326 0.0440 15.60% 22.53% 2011 0.354 0.0280 8.59% 33.05% 2012* 0.453 0.0990 27.97% 40.98% Here's some facts for you. Your beating your chest about stabilizing the tax rate but here's a little chart that shows the exact opposite. We need real leadership to make tough choices to keep taxes in check. Borrowing and spending is not the answer. Thoses bills come due someday also, then what? *Revaluation had an impact on the rate and individual tax tax bills. But the first three years there was a 33% increase in municipal taxes. 2012 just brought me a little extra cheer.

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