On the day before a critical mayoral election, Republicans chalked up a key victory in Hamilton today, but the Mayor says they will have only today to celebrate
Following a state judge’s ruling against Mayor Glen Gilmore’s request for a stay on the town’s municipal budget, Bowman & Co. released the township’s annual financial statement to Republican Township Council President David J. Kenny.
Gilmore is in a close race with John Bencivengo, who has complained since August about the mayor’s unwillingness to release details of the budget.
Kenny said that the budget contains a $4 million deficit on the revenue side, and a $1 million deficit on the expenditures side.
“The mayor has been hiding information until after the election. It shouldn’t have come to this. The mayor should have filed the annual financial statement in August, when it was due,” said Kenny.
Republicans hope that the information will deal a death blow to Gilmore’s reelection hopes for a third term in office.
“The mayor has been a poor fiscal manager who has withheld information about the budget for the sake of political expediency,” said Bencivengo.
As soon as Judge Anthony Perillo denied Gilmore’s requested stay, the Republicans received a faxed copy of the report in Kenny’s office. The Republicans estimated that the deficit will result in a 25% tax increase.
“I’m optimistic that the residents of this town recognize that what I have accomplished as mayor is impressive,” said Gilmore.
The mayor said that Hamilton has experienced a decline of commercial projects in this past cycle, in part created by the Republican town council.
“What they have managed to do is shoot down the Transit Village project, which would have generated $3 million in new taxes.”
Gilmore also said that he had submitted his budget to the council and asked them for cuts, but said they sat on the document for five months, and “didn’t come up with a single penny.”
Gilmore said that the council in general has been obstructionist. “They talk about public safety and they put roadblocks up to live feed cameras in neighborhoods. They say they want lower taxes and then they do not come forward with how to do that… The Republicans controlled the mayor’s office for 24 years. They’re seeing this as their last opportunity to take it back, and they’re determined to do whatever it takes.”