Planting hatred

To the Editor:

In your issue from February 12 you introduced the O’Donnell team. Thank you very much, what a revelation. I should not have been surprised, though. Once again we have people running for office here in Bayonne whose primary arguments are slogans intended to plant hatred among the people of Bayonne. Don’t we have enough of this yet? They claim Mayor Davis’s development plan for Bayonne using “PILOT” tax plans simply gives tax breaks to the rich. Yes, plant that hatred. Have any one of them ever managed a business? I have. Oh, and so has Kevin Kuhl. That is why Mr. Kuhl opposed “Bring Your Own” establishments in Bayonne so his liquor license does not get depreciated and the alcoholic beverage prices remain high. PILOT plans tax new developments based on their rental income. So at the beginning when occupancy rates are low they only pay taxes like other small apartment buildings. As the occupancy rates increase so increase the PILOT payments. Jersey City, which has developed its waterfront district very successfully and beautifully using PILOT programs, has now developments at the end of the PILOT programs that pay more property taxes under the PILOT program than under the standard property tax assessment. As for our public school system, it invoices the city for every dollar it spends. And the city pays. The fact that the PILOT revenues are not pre-classified into school tax and other tax has nothing to do with the funding of the school system. The public school system gets paid whatever they invoice to the city. Claims that the POILOT programs defund our school systems are simply lies that have only one purpose, to plant hatred among the citizens of Bayonne. Unless the O’Donnell team is actually that ignorant that they do not know the truth. Whether it is ignorance or the malice of planting hatred or both, this should make the O’Donnell team ineligible in the eyes of the Bayonne people to ever hold public office in this city. I hope we, the people of Bayonne, have learned our lessons from prior Bayonne administrations that used the same style of arguments as the O’Donnell team, and ended up leading Bayonne into decline and increasing property taxes. Let us not repeat history this time.

ALEXANDER H. SHENK