MontClairVoyant: Doting on Multiple Referenda Voting

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

As the November 2 referendum nears on whether to change Montclair’s Board of Education from appointed to elected, what else would you like to see go to referendum?

Sincerely,

Votes as Plentiful as Oats

Happy to jokingly answer your question, but I first want to offer some reasons why I support changing our BOE. After all, that acronym stands for Bring on Elected!

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

Does not. Anyway, state your case.

Sincerely,

But Don’t Case Your State

Most other BOEs in New Jersey are elected, so why not Montclair’s? Sometimes there are good reasons why a vast majority is a vast majority, even as there’s never a good reason why “vast majority” appears three times in one sentence.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

Um…noted. Another reason?

Sincerely,

Mary Tyler More

An appointed BOE has seven members while an elected BOE has nine — reminding us of the Seven of Nine character from “Star Trek: Voyager.” She left the Borg collective…’nuff said.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

I’m having trouble assimilating your answer. Some serious reasons to try an elected BOE?

Sincerely,

Or Sirius Reasons

For nearly a decade, Montclair’s appointed BOE has had a sporadically negative history that the board is directly or indirectly associated with. Lots of superintendent turnover, giving a bonus to a poorly performing superintendent, supporting standardized-testing overkill, an “enemies list” of parents and others who opposed teacher-unfriendly education “reform,” school buildings with structural issues, suing the Montclair Education Association when MEA members were rightly reluctant to return to in-person school before COVID vaccinations became widespread, etc. Thankfully, there’s no lawsuit I’m aware of against a painfully long, awkwardly phrased column answer.


DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

Okay, what would you jokingly like to see brought to referendum?

Sincerely,

Quips Ahoy

The question of Belgian-block curbs vs. regular curbs. The former remind me of Belgian waffles, which taste great but have deeper indentations that can lead to syrup overload.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

You must be kidding. Name another possible referendum.

Sincerely,

We Contort, You Decide

Should major Montclair developers who keep constructing too-big, mediocre-looking projects aimed at the affluent be inducted into the Gentrification Hall of Fame in 2021 or in 2112? Rush or not is the question.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

“It’s complicated,” because 2021 feels rushed and “2112” is an album recorded by Rush. Any other referendum you have in mind?

Sincerely,

Today’s Tom Sawyer

A vote on whether the lights for night games at Glenfield Park’s softball field should be replaced by sparkly disco balls.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

You’re strange. Another referendum?

Sincerely,

Strangers in the Blight

Should the names of Upper Mountain Avenue and lower-elevation Valley Road be flip-flopped? You know, to mess with the psyches of visiting drivers.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

On second thought, you’re beyond strange. Getting back to reality, what about a referendum on whether it’s okay to park at Montclair’s many broken parking meters without getting ticketed?

Sincerely,

Quarterback Who Didn’t Get My Quarter Back

Unfortunately, a majority of Township Council members opposed such a ticket break at October 19’s TC meeting. Meanwhile, drivers of very small cars should be able to park at parking centimeters rather than at parking meters.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,

That would require much stooping to insert coins. Getting back to unreality, name one last possible referendum.

Sincerely,

The End of the Guiltiness

Montclair has many great restaurants, but their food servers appear to be appointed rather than elected. Should that change?

 

 

Dave Astor, author, is the MontClairVoyant. His opinions about politics and local events are strictly his own and do not represent or reflect the views of Baristanet.

 

 

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