New commissioners take oath of office in West Wildwood

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Cornelius Maxwell, Christopher Fox and Scott Golden said they have a lot of work in front of them, including repairing the town’s camaraderie and budget.  Cornelius Maxwell, Christopher Fox and Scott Golden said they have a lot of work in front of them, including repairing the town’s camaraderie and budget.

WEST WILDWOOD — After four years of political turmoil, three men who ran as a team were sworn in as Borough Commissioners on May 15.

Former state senator James Cafiero, who served as the borough's solicitor in the 1960s, administered the oath to Christopher Fox, Scott Golden and Cornelius “Max” Maxwell in front of an audience of supporters in borough hall.

Christopher Fox, the borough’s mayor from 1996 to 2008, took up that position again. Fox will also oversee the borough’s department of public safety.

Golden, the only member from the former administration, will oversee the department of public works.

Maxwell will head the department of revenue and finance.

As part of the first order of business, the board accepted the resignation of Solicitor Paul Baldini. Attorney Mary D’Arcy Bittner was as his replacement. Bittner will serve the remainder of Baldini’s one-year contract at a monthly salary of about $2,900.

Fox said a priority for the new commission was to “bring the town back together.”

Four years ago, former Mayor Herbert Frederick, then-Commissioner Gerard McNamara and Golden started their term on difficult terms. In 2008 Golden was the only member of his ticket, which also included Maxwell and Joseph Hickey, that was voted in. The third member of Frederick and McNamara’s team, Dennis Hocker, did not get enough votes.

The end of that election was just the start of political and legal disputes and a divide between neighbors and political supporters.

Fox said that a united team has more benefits for the borough.

“Three people who can work well together can also get more done for the residents of West Wildwood,” Fox said of his fellow commissioners.

“When we were campaigning and going door to door, we almost couldn’t believe how many people supported us,” Fox said. “Thank you for your continued support.”

Maxwell and Golden also thanked their supporters.

Wildwood Mayor Ernie Troiano, who was in attendance at the meeting, told the new administration that “the borough is a whole lot better of a place now than it was before.”

However a lot of work stands before the newly formed government, including the borough’s budget which wasn’t introduced before the former administration left office. “The current administration had used the surplus which in 2008 when I left office was at $965,000. Now with all of the legal fees, that surplus has dwindled to $22,000,” according to Fox said.

Stabilizing taxes starts with eliminating many of the borough's current lawsuits, he said. And with those out of the way, the borough should be recouping the finances in future years, he said.

However, this year Fox said that “it's going to be difficult” but he doesn’t plan on firing anyone.

According to the mayor, a public meeting has been scheduled for May 18 at 9 a.m. to develop the borough’s budget.

 

Lauren Suit can be e-mailed at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or you can comment on this story online at shorenewstoday.com.

Christopher Fox is sworn in by former state sen. James Cafiero with his daughters Nicole, Grace and Paige by his side. His daughter Brooke was in school.  Christopher Fox is sworn in by former state sen. James Cafiero with his daughters Nicole, Grace and Paige by his side. His daughter Brooke was in school.

Scott Golden takes the oath of office as his fiancée Jennifer Sibiga holds the Bible and his mother, Mary Golden looks on.  Scott Golden takes the oath of office as his fiancée Jennifer Sibiga holds the Bible and his mother, Mary Golden looks on.

Cornelius “Max” Maxwell takes the oath of office. His wife Susan Maxwell, mother Helena and daughter Bridget were with him.  Cornelius “Max” Maxwell takes the oath of office. His wife Susan Maxwell, mother Helena and daughter Bridget were with him.

Attorney Mary D’Arcy Bittner will replace Paul Baldini as the borough’s solicitor.  Attorney Mary D’Arcy Bittner will replace Paul Baldini as the borough’s solicitor.

 


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