Between April 15 and 30, there were 13 public meetings.
Ordinarily, the only scheduled meetings would have been the regular City Council meeting, the Planning Board and the Historic Preservation Commission. But the Plainfield Municipal Utilities Authority held a special meeting, there were five budget deliberation sessions, three meetings to gather comments for the city's Muhlenberg study and an urgent meeting on the Liberty Village issues. Mayor Adrian O. Mapp set a press conference for his 100-day report, but canceled it in light of all the other meetings.
Many residents attended multiple meetings. I made nine of them, with an Arbor Day celebration and the opening of the Shakespeare Garden thrown in for good measure. Most meetings were captured on PCTV, so others probably logged several hours watching the action on television or YouTube.
After all that, interested residents faced a choice on May 5 between a council meeting and a Town Hall featuring Rep. Rush Holt. At a special meeting preceding the council's agenda-fixing session, the contentious issue of the Liberty Village "payment in lieu of taxes" plan was resolved, warding off the possible loss of subsidized housing in 96 residential units.
I hope everyone is shaking off the tension caused by trying to participate in all these meetings. It's a good time to get out for some gardening, hiking, shopping or whatever else you enjoy in Spring. If you devoted time to these important civic matters in April, you deserve a break now. (My sympathies to those who are on the campaign trail or supporting candidates in pre-primary activities for the June 3 election - your break will come later.)