The easy thing for me to do as a politician when there is a divisive issue is to avoid, dodge and hide.
But that’s not who I am as a person, and I vowed to myself that I would not let this office change who I am. I will always be transparent in letting you know how I feel, whether it’s the popular opinion or not. And I will always be engaged and responsive, even if that engagement and responsiveness creates contrast with how things may have been done historically. I have decided to vote to change Montclair’s school district to a type II district, where Board of Education members would be directly elected by the people instead of appointed by the mayor. I encourage you to do the same. I want to be clear – from what I have seen, I take no issue with any appointments Mayor Sean Spiller has made to the Board of Education. In fact, I’ve found the individuals he has appointed to be upstanding and terrific people. I’d likely vote for any of them if they were on the ballot for the school board. But should any one woman or man have that much power? After these last few years in American politics, I’m of the mind that the more you can minimize one person’s power, spread that power out and push power to the people, the healthier a democracy is. The same is true for process. To me, the more transparent a process is and the more that process invites in different perspectives, the healthier the outcome and the more confidence the people have in that outcome.