One of Chairman Jerry Green's favorite phrases is, right or wrong?
I heard him say that when he thought it was a good idea to put the seniors in the basement of the Tepper's building when the lease on their old center ran out . He said the same thing when he tried to convince the seniors to agree that the center should be in the Armory. The seniors' answer was, "Wrong!"
Now he and his City Council faction want to do away with Mayor Adrian O. Mapp's "new hires," a misnomer because some are new people in existing titles. The net effect is to cripple Mapp's plans for the future of Plainfield. Green's new paradigm since apparently casting off the spell put on him by Charlotte DeFilippo to support Mapp in 2013 is that he and his followers are right and Mapp and his supporters are wrong.
He tried it with Liberty Village and thank heavens the council realized they had to do the right thing by the residents.
The issue now is the 2014 budget. Is cutting out Mapp's team for leadership in economic development, public safety and communications right or wrong? Right, if you want to save $9 on a tax increase for the average homeowner. Wrong, if you want to get Plainfield ready to compete for investment that will offset declining revenues.
The worst part of the current situation is that outsiders, including those with money to invest, don't really have time to figure out who is right or wrong. All they see is a city where the politics make it too difficult to do business, so they take their money elsewhere.
To use Councilman William Reid's term, developers and investors don't want to get involved in a lot of "who shot john,"
There is a special meeting tonight on budget amendments, 8 p.m. in City Hall Library and another one next Tuesday for a public hearing and possible adoption of the 2014 budget. The outcome may signal three and a half more years of political dissension or demonstrate the ability of the executive and legislative branches to collaborate for the city's future.