More maneuvers at Taxpayers Association

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President now says she won’t leave group

MIDDLE TOWNSHIP – It’s been a time of uncertainty for the Middle Township Taxpayers Association.

Last week, Barbara Cresse said she planned to resign as president after the candidates forum Wednesday, Oct. 12, and she would launch her own organization that would have wider scope than that of a taxpayers group.

On the afternoon of Oct. 12, after press time, those plans changed. Cresse said she’s staying after past president Eileen Fausey stepped down.

She said Fausey has submitted a resignation letter. Fausey could not be reached for comment as of Thursday afternoon, Oct. 13.

Vilma Pombo also resigned as the secretary and Bette McGurk is no longer the vice president, but both remain members of the organization, Cresse said.

The fallout appears to have arisen after Cresse passed out surveys at a meeting in September detailing concerns in the township. The survey included asking property owners their three main concerns, if they supported a paid fire department and rating the township committee.

Three taxpayers association board members had since distanced themselves from the recent survey and from Cresse. They said Cresse did not have permission to hand out surveys.

Cresse said it was all about politics and the township committee race. The General Election is Nov. 8, and the three-way race includes Democrat Bill Sturm, Independent Steven Russell and Republican Tim Donohue.

Cresse said she witnessed a change after dozens of people attended a September meeting and articles appeared in The Middle Township Gazette.

After a story on the surveys ran in The Gazette last week, three then-board members submitted a letter, distancing themselves from the recent survey and from Cresse. The letter had been signed by then-secretary Vilma Pombo, then-vice president Bette McGurk and then-past president Eileen Fausey.

Cresse said the surveys had been informal and required no approval.

According to the association’s bylaws, "The Executive Committee shall consist of the President, Vice-President. Treasurer, Secretary and immediate past president. Its duty will be to serve in an advisory capacity and oversee expenses."


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