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Public Commenter Mocked by Planning Board Member

by Community Contributor

To the Editor:

I zoomed in to the Hopewell Township Planning Board meeting last night (1/25/24).  While the issue I had come for was postponed, I stayed on, just to hear what else was going on in the Township. The discussion was about a new development near the circle.

As the discussion of the project came to an end, the Chair asked for public comments. One member of the public spoke. I couldn’t pay much attention to what he was saying, however, because all of my attention was on one of the Board members in his little box on my screen. This Planning Board member mocked the resident throughout his comments – thumbing his nose, pretending he was playing a tiny violin, pointing at his watch, holding a literal clock up to the camera, and making a motion across his neck (I assume meaning “cut him off”.  I don’t THINK it meant “decapitate him”.)

I have rarely seen such disdain for the public in a Township meeting, and I hope to never see it again. I don’t believe anyone with this level of disregard for the public’s thoughts has any place on one of our Boards.  At a minimum, I hope he publicly apologizes for his unbecoming behavior at the next meeting. (If the Board doesn’t ask him to step down, that is.)

Kim Robinson,
Hopewell Township

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