The dream team of mayors may no longer be looking for a fifth man as Mayor Sam Tolley of has agreed to meet with them.
On Thursday, Mayors Ken Short of Washington Township, Bill Cogger of Chester Township, Bob Davis of Chester Borough, and Neil Henry of Mendham Borough concluded a Department of Education presentation to the regional school district with an appeal for Sam Tolley, the Mayor of Mendham Township, to join them.
The news didn’t take long to travel to Tolley, who was in the crowd for the presentation, but chose not speak or sit with his fellow mayors.
“I want work to with them, ” Tolley said. “But as they indicated I want the School Board to be involved.”
That does not appear to be a problem for the team of mayors. “We plan on bringing the school boards online with us,” Mayor Short at the end of the presentation.
Short and the other mayors began working together after a . At that time, Mendham Township’s mayor was Frank Ciopettini. During the township’s 2012 organization meeting, Sam Tolley was appointed to lead the municipality.
While Tolley was not a part of planning last night’s meeting or course of action, the issue has not been ignored. Tolley has attended presentations on the options, led discussions on the topic during committee meetings and reached out to the surrounding mayors. “As they indicated I have called them all,” Tolley said. “And we all agreed to meet after last night's presentation.”
The mayors of four of the municipalities that make up the regional district have agreed to kick in $10,000 each from their 2012 budgets to fund that study, which leaves them approximately $10,000 short. Tolley would not commit to the money without more discussion. “Any financial commitment needs to be discussed with the committee,” said Tolley who next meets with the Township Committee Tuesday night, Feb. 28.
The 2012 budgets are due in to Trenton by March 9, and the upcoming meeting would seem a likely place to broach the subject. However, as of this writing, the item is not on the agenda.
Regardless of the mechanics behind the scenes, Tolley is not opposed to any of the principals discussed by his counterparts. “I believe that the town and the school board need to meet and agree on the direction of any study,” Tolley said. “And then all fund it.”