To the Editor:
Hopewell Township residents will vote for two members of the Hopewell Township Committee on November 5. I encourage voters to choose Mayor Kristin McLaughlin and Courtney Peters-Manning.
Kristin McLaughlin is a hard-working Committee member who takes her position seriously. Courtney Peters-Manning promises to bring new ideas to the Committee that align with the values of our community, such as a sincere concern about the environment and open space.
I have served on the Committee with John Hart since January 2018. John has been involved in public life in the Township for many years, but the more I see him in action the less I think his views reflect those of the majority of Township voters.
I have seen John curse at a constituent from the dais in an open public meeting for daring to hold John to account for his own words. He challenged the need for a bike and walking path, asking how many kids get hit by cars while going to school. Regarding the greatest threat to our planet, he said, “The facts are it might be climate change and not actually global warming,” mentioning as evidence that it was cold in Canada last winter. He called medical marijuana “ridiculous.” He referred to Baldpate Mountain as “just open space land.” And he decided it was unimportant to attend a ceremony honoring LGBTQ residents.
John’s running mate is Ed “Jack” Jackowski. He ran for Township Committee last year with the slogan of “Restoring Hopewell’s Roots” and his showing at last year’s League of Women Voters forum showed that he wasn’t terribly informed about Township issues. He hasn’t said much this year, so it’s hard to determine whether he has learned anything over the past twelve months.
I have nothing against John or Jack personally. John and I have had several pleasant conversations during my term on the Township Committee, and I am sure Jack is a nice person.
Serving on the Township Committee requires a willingness to work hard, to pay attention to detail, to make tough choices, and to present new ideas to move the Township forward. Kristin and Courtney are clear winners by that measure.
Please remember to vote for two candidates for Hopewell Township’s future on November 5 — Kristin McLaughlin and Courtney Peters-Manning.
Michael Ruger is writing as an individual and not on behalf of the Hopewell Township Committee.