CWA Local 1081
60 Park Place, Suite 501
Newark, NJ, 07102
Office (973) 623-1081
Fax: (732) 988-1081

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Newark Teachers Union

New Jersey Citizen Action Oil Group

November 6, 2009


Hon. Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr.

Essex County Executive

Hall of Records, Room 405

465 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.

Newark, NJ, 07102


Re: OPRA Request

       Government Review Task Force Final Report


Dear Mr. DiVincenzo:


Attached, please find a copy of the Open Public Records Request (OPRA) request CWA Local 1081 has submitted this day to the County of Essex for a copy the final report of your appointed Essex County Government Review Task Force as well as all related documents not previously provided our Union in that related regard.


As you will please recall, CWA Local 1081 sent you the attached missive of October 22, 2009 requesting “all documents within the Administration’s possession regarding the reported fact that on Wednesday, February 2, 2005 you announced the creation of an ad hoc Government Review Task Force to study how county, municipalities and school boards can work together to control costs”.


In response to our OPRA request letter written you of October 22, 2009, CWA Local 1081 received from your administration copies of the “Meeting Summary” of nineteen (19) meetings of the Government Review Task Force that were held between March 22, 2005 and September 7, 2006.  As per the attached “Meeting Summary” of the Government Review Task Force meeting of September 7, 2006, the task force “Recommended a professional be hired to edit and produce the final report”.


As per your administration’s attached undated press release of 2005, our Union obtained via the Internet entitled “Essex County Executive DiVincenzo Announces the Creation of Government Review Task Force”, you were quoted as stating “Our Government Review Task Force will look at how the three levels of government that impact residents’ tax bills – County and municipal governments, and the Boards of Education – work. They will study how costs can be controlled, and seek new solutions to help reduce the property tax burden on our residents”. Your press release asserted that “Property taxes are the number one concern of Essex County residents” and you were quoted as stating as well that “The creation of the Government Review Task Force is the next step we are taking to identify innovative ways Essex County, our municipalities and school districts can work together for the benefit of our taxpayers”.


Former Essex County Executive Peter Shapiro and Chairman of the Government Review Task Force was quoted within your press release as stating “Citizens are discontented with rising property taxes. We want to look at the numbers and find out where the burden is coming from and how it falls on our taxpayers,” and that “We are going to conduct an objective, fact-based review of the County and the 22 municipalities and their school districts. We will be looking county-wide and do this very openly and without any prejudice of the issues”.


Considering the considerable consequence Mr. Shapiro and you credited to the charge you gave the Government Review Task Force, CWA Local 1081 would prefer to believe it must have been an oversight your administration failed to provide our Union a copy of the task force’s final report. We respectfully request anew you expeditiously now do so.





David H. Weiner, President

CWA Local 1081