Letter to the Editor: Teamsters Local 97 to support Mayor Tom Kelaher
As the vice president for Teamsters Local 97, supporting Republican candidates for office is not something I do very often. However, in the case of Mayor Tom Kelaher, I am obligated to make an exception.
Mayor Kelaher is an effective manager and more importantly, an honest man whose word is his bond. Faced with a financial crisis this year, the mayor asked us to open our existing contract and promised to negotiate a mutually beneficial arrangement that protected taxpayers while also avoiding layoffs.
He kept his word, and we succeeded in working together where other governing bodies and unions have failed. That was due to the mayor’s leadership. The mayor was able to stay under the state-mandated 2 percent property tax cap, and my members kept working.
Additionally, the township decided to automate some DPW recycling programs, but the mayor’s team also provided training for existing personnel to allow them to staff the new positions. Furthermore, we continued to engage in a shared services approach with OCC and the Toms River schools for solid waste collection. We were able to get obsolete, unsafe and inefficient vehicles replaced systematically, bolstering safe working conditions.
As a lifelong resident of this town, our community’s future is incredibly important to me. That is why I am urging all my union brothers and sisters reading this letter to put aside partisan politics and vote for a man who is truly deserving of our support — Mayor Tom Kelaher.
Thank you for your time.
Teamsters Local 97