I have received many personal and mean-spirited attacks for defending Mayor Short. Some attackers assume that the Mayor’s supporters are family members or friends. I am neither. Some assume that we must have gotten our power back quicker. My power came back Sunday, 11/11/2012 at approx. 7:00 p.m. I don’t agree with Mayor Short on everything (uh Mayor, whatever happened to paving my street?). But not much can be accomplished if disagreeing about one issue = disagreeing about everything.
I understand the frustration experienced by many not knowing where and how to get information about what was going on. I remember the feeling very well from last year. With no home telephone lines, no web access, no television, no way to re-charge cell phones and sometimes no cell reception, the only connection to the outside world was through battery operated or car radio. Compared to last year, if you knew who to call and where to go to get information, the communication has significantly improved. The mayors and residents were in constant contact with local radio station WRNJ, who generously put aside regular programming to focus solely on the aftermath of Sandy. The continuous coverage of all that was happening locally was invaluable. But obviously not all of the residents knew where to get information and a better job needs to be done to make them aware of what is available.
Other personal attacks against me suggested that “if I know so much about Long Valley, then why don’t I become mayor”? I do not claim to know a lot about Long Valley politics, but I do know a heck of a lot about what our Mayor and committee have done and are doing about the JCP&L situation. In this particular issue, I am very involved. First Energy of Ohio, the parent company of JCP&L, has proven over and over again that they are unable to service Chester, Mount Olive, and Washington Township. I want First Energy out of here! I had spoken several times to Mayor Short over the past 2 weeks and that is why I am aware of all that he has been doing. There is nothing else that he could have or needed to do at this time. However, if he is willing to continue to be our Mayor, he has a long battle ahead of him and anyone who is willing to help with the cause is welcome to join in. I had made several calls to JCP&L over the past 2 weeks and believe that I have obtained information that could be helpful to our cause. I assured Mayor Short that I would provide him with the information in writing.
By the way, being Mayor of Washington Twshp. was a paid position. It was Mayor Short’s decision not to accept a salary. I don’t understand why that set off such a spark. Perhaps the anger and frustration over what we went through over these past 2 weeks is being misdirected.
I hope that we will soon be back to normalcy; although we know that we cannot rest assured until something is done about JCP&L. There are many wonderful, caring, generous people in Long Valley. We still have an all volunteer Rescue Squad and an all volunteer Fire Department. For those of us who love living in a neighborhood where kindness and common decency prevail, let us hope that we will never lose that.