Last week, The Scotch Plains-Fanwood Times published a photo on the front page telling all our residents about the $100,000 of taxpayer dollars that the Fanwood governing body got to refurbish a 60-year-old caboose that currently resides rusted, rotting, graffiti covered and half hidden in our borough's recycling center. What the short blurb doesn't tell you is that the caboose will cost much more then $100,000 to rehabilitate. In fact, the last estimates I heard at the Borough Council meetings were approximately three times that.
What the current team in Borough Hall will tell you is that this is "grant money". You will hear that this is money that the Department of Transportation gave them to restore this antique caboose. However, this money came out of all of our pockets in one way or another. More importantly, it is insufficient funds to properly renovate that relic, and now that we own it, the remainder of the required money needs to come from somewhere. How could they even think of spending this kind of money when many of our residents are struggling to keep their jobs and pay their property taxes in this economy?
I think it's time to cut our losses. Is there an exit strategy to get out from under this bad decision? If not, I suggest the current governing body start thinking of one, or the new governing body will have to.
Republican Candidate for Fanwood Borough Council