At the October 24th Conference meeting, councilman Nick Joanow's proposal for Bloomfield to institute a "Pay to Play" ordinance was narrowly defeated by the mayor's 4 to 3 majority. The need for such an ordnance became abundantly clear at the Candidate's Forum last Thursday. Towards the end of the Q and A from the audience, the candidates were asked if they had ever accepted contributions from vendors.
This week's independent Press has a cover story on the "incorrect answers" that Carlos Bernard and Elias Chalet gave at the Forum:
Incorrect answers at forum
By Daniel Jackovino Staff Writer
During last Thursday's Candidates' Forum, candidates were asked if they had accepted contributions from vendors currently under contract with the township.Video coverage of the entire forum can be seen here.
All six candidates answered "no." However, a perfunctory review of the candidates' contribution reports showed Democrat Carlos Bernard of the 3rd Ward and Democrat Elias Chalet of the 1st Ward did in fact receive contributions from contracted vendors.
The Friends of Carlos Bernard for Councilman listed Ed Farmer, the CEO of Millennium Strategies, a grants consultant for the township, as having made a $250 contribution. Andrew Zabiega, a partner in the accounting firm of Samuel Klein & Co, the township auditor, made a contribution of $100. Elias Chalet for Bloomfield Councilman lists a $2,600 contribution from Richard Alaimo Engineering Association, an engineering consultant.