As Charles R. Swindoll once said, “We are all faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as impossible situations.” And so goes the continuing conversation about the water company property in New Milford. What seems like an impossible situation of buying the water company property, even though there would be a tremendous long-term benefit to us, is less so when you discover that New Milford has a wonderful grants writer. She has brought in over $20 million to New Milford during her time working for New Milford and has brought in similar amounts to the other 27 towns for whom she writes grants.
Do you know that NJ Green Acres could fund up to 75 percent of the purchase price? That would be $5 million. Do you know that Bergen County Open Space could fund 75 percent of the remaining $3 million? That’s an additional $2.25 million. That would leave $750,000 to be paid for by the taxpayer. Do you know that NJ Blue Acres wants to buy the land along the Hackensack River and could fund up to $2 million toward the new football field by buying the old field and old softball field next to it?
What this town needs is leadership with a little entrepreneurial spirit and the confidence that our grants writer will be able to continue her wonderful work for New Milford and will get the money that we need. A little positive thinking goes a long a long way.
All the way back in January 2011, when I tried to get United Water to donate the property to the borough (read the January 10, 2011 closed-session minutes on my campaign’s Facebook page “Berner and Resbch for Council 2012), I have wanted the town to acquire the property. I have asked for our grants writer to come to mayor and council meetings to explain how to pay for the property, although she has not been allowed to appear (read the March 14, 2011 closed session minutes on my campaign’s Facebook page).
The opportunity to acquire this property has come along once in New Milford’s lifetime. Once it’s developed, it’s gone forever. This is too valuable to the future of the town to let it pass by.