Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXIV, No. 42
 
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
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Supporter Credits Scott Sipprelle as “The Man Our Country Needs”

Katherine O’Connor
Lovers Lane

All Invited to Princeton Property Fair Tax Meeting on Tuesday, October 26

Jim Floyd, Jim Firestone
Princeton Property Fair Tax, Vandeventer Avenue

Comments by Doug Miles Prompts Corner House to Set the Record Straight

Wendy Jolley
Corner House Board Chair
and Princeton Township Resident

Liverman and Lempert Offer “Responsible Policies That Serve Our Community Values”

Walter Bliss
Moore Street

Rush Holt Supporter Believes the American Dream Is Under Assault

David W. Blair
Princeton-Kingston Road

Disappointment Voiced With Scott Sipprelle’s Comment Regarding Eisnstein Alley Initiative

Steven Georges
Co-founder,
Einstein Alley Entrepreneurs Collaborative
Caitlin Court

Words of Support for Scott Sipprelle as a “Different Kind of Candidate”

Eva Kaplan
Railroad Place, Pennington

Liz Lempert is Commended for Her Commitment to Sustainablilty

Casey Lambert, Wendy Mager, Jim Waltman, Matt Wasserman

Area Residents Show Support for Sipprelle’s Campaign for Congress

Peggy Baldwin, Kathy Boozan, James Boozan, Jim Callery, Mary Callery, Asnel Charles, Denise Comsudis, Sean Duffy, Stu Duncan, Kevin Fitzpatrick, Mary Fitzpatrick, George Fox, Joanne Gannon, John Gannon, Robert J. Gleason, Ken Griebell, Diana Griebell, Fernando Guerrero, David Harwood, Lynne Harwood, Jack Henneman, Peter K. Hexter, Ted Horodynsky, John Irving, Lynn Irving, Louise Russell Irving, Jill Jachera, Bill Kister, Jane Labban, Imad Labban, Keli Lynch, Larry Lynch, Chuck Macdonald, Cass Macdonald, Cuyler Mathews, Anita McGlynn, Roland Foster Miller, Ireen Miller, Esther Mills, Lee Eric Newton, Thomas Rooney, Bill Stevenson, Colin Vonvorys, Ruth Wedelich, Carol Wojciechowicz, Kate Wood, John Wood, Robert J. Gleason,

Call For Scott Sipprelle to Publicly Denounce Theft of Rush Holt Signs

Mary C. Lincoln
Carter Road

Many Thanks to Everyone Who Helped With The Library’s 100th Birthday Celebration

Leslie Burger
Executive Director, Princeton Public Library

Community Yard Sale Benefitted Orphanage in Montero, Bolivia

Jane Kupin
Erdman Avenue

Can’t Organizers of Community Events Set Aside a Small Budget for Musicians?

Chris Harford
Griggs Farm


Supporter Credits Scott Sipprelle as “The Man Our Country Needs”

To the Editor:

I am registered as an “unaffiliated” voter. That wasn’t always the case, but as the party I supported all my life represented me less and less, I no longer belonged. Consequently, I look at the person, not the party, when I vote.

I was ready to give up on politics. Both parties have done damage to our country. I am angry and afraid. It is hard to trust that any politician is looking out for my interests.

Then came Scott Sipprelle. I read about him, met him, and although we don’t agree on everything, I believe he is the man our country needs … we need … in the 12th Congressional District. His vote will be what we need to rejuvenate our stagnated economy, to keep our country strong and secure, the vote to support our allies.

Don’t buy into the class warfare rhetoric or the offensive inaccuracies about his career. Scott Sipprelle is a man who personifies the American dream, and at the same time, creates opportunities for others to be successful too.

Don’t be seduced by the money flowing from the administration through Rush Holt to our district. The timing is perfectly planned to get your vote and reelect him so he can continue as a rubber stamp for the Pelosi-led House of Representatives. If that’s what you want, I can’t change your mind; but for the rest of us, please consider voting for Scott Sipprelle on November 2. He has my vote.

Katherine O’Connor
Lovers Lane

All Invited to Princeton Property Fair Tax Meeting on Tuesday, October 26

To the Editor:

You probably have heard a lot about Princeton’s 2010 assessment in the news. Perhaps you have heard that it has quieted down since the appeal process is now over. But, that couldn’t be further from the truth. People are really hurting.

As far as we know at Princeton Property Fair Tax the appeal process took care of a very small percentage of grievances, between 5-7 percent. Often property owners who had their taxes raised $4,000-$5,000 in the hardest hit area, only got reductions of $1,000-$1,500. There are still many more who did not appeal, who should have appealed, and others, who received windfall tax deductions, who should not have.

It’s the opinion of many townspeople that the reassessment should be over turned as it has been in other towns. It’s the basis that you build on for the next ten years. And, if it is substantially flawed town wide, as we believe, it will only create more problems as a foundation, making the assessors’ work difficult and erratic.

All interested tax payers in both the Township and Borough should come to our next meeting at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, October 26 in the main room of the Township Municipal complex. We have been working hard behind the scenes on exposing the systematically flawed nature of the 2010 reassessment. You should see the results.

The solutions that are called remedies will be placed before you in a coherent way. Keep in mind that we are not meeting to vent emotions, but to show you how you can effectively participate in righting the wrongs that have been done.

Make yourself effective by helping to protect yourself and your neighbors. Learn with us how to question the whole process and which solutions may work if we work together. For additional information visit www.princetontax.info.

Jim Floyd, Jim Firestone
Princeton Property Fair Tax, Vandeventer Avenue

Comments by Doug Miles Prompts Corner House to Set the Record Straight

To the Editor:

Corner House, a joint agency of Princeton Borough and Princeton Township, has served the Princeton community since 1972, and has reached tens of thousands of residents during this time. We are more than a “noble” service in this community, as recently stated by Doug Miles, candidate for Princeton Township Committee. In fact, we have been the Princeton response to alcohol and drug addiction for 38 years, we have been the Princeton response to addressing gang-related issues for five years, and we have been the Princeton response to assist those “at risk” students that can easily fall through the cracks of the system for the last twenty years. Corner House last year reached almost 5000 individuals through our leadership, prevention and clinical programs.

The recent article in Town Topics that quoted Mr. Miles grossly over-estimated our budget. Mr. Miles indicated that he would recommend closing this grass roots organization that was started by parents and community leaders in response to the critical needs of teens in Princeton, in order to “save 2 million dollars per year.” Not only would closing Corner House be a false savings, it would be at significant cost to our youth. Corner House would welcome the opportunity to meet with Mr. Miles to help him understand how the agency actually operates and the critical role we play in this community.

Since Mr Miles’s misstatements in Town Topics could cause confusion and misunderstanding, here are the actual facts of the Corner House budget:

• Our total budget has never exceeded half the amount quoted by Mr. Miles.

• Corner House Foundation, a private organization, contributes 35 percent of the total Corner House Budget.

• The State of New Jersey grants specifically for the treatment of substance abuse account for 16 percent of the total Corner House Budget.

• Mercer County grants specifically for the treatment of substance abuse and for the prevention and education of substance abuse account for 22 percent of the total Corner House Budget.

• The State of New Jersey Grants and the Mercer County Grants are given specifically to Corner House for the specific areas of substance abuse and cannot be diverted to other areas of the municipal budget. This money would be lost to Princeton
residents if Corner House did not exist.

The facts about Princeton Township’s and Princeton Borough’s contribution to Corner House are as follows:

• The percentage that Princeton Township and Prince-ton Borough actually contribute (Net of Fees) is less than 10 percent of the total Corner House Budget.

It is hoped that these facts will set the record straight for the residents of Princeton. We are a shining example of a public/private partnership that is working, and will continue to work for the youth of Princeton. In 2010, 38 years later, Corner House is still fulfilling the community’s need to keep our young people safe.

Wendy Jolley
Corner House Board Chair
and Princeton Township Resident

Liverman and Lempert Offer “Responsible Policies That Serve Our Community Values”

To the Editor:

As Township Committee addresses the challenges of reducing costs and creating efficiencies in local government while also addressing the harsh realities of our state’s regressive property tax system, I hope they will keep in mind the values that define our community.

Although a slash and burn approach to budgeting may appeal to our frustrations in the current economic climate, Township Committee must be sensitive to the impact of reckless cuts — the kind often promised in the vacuum of a political campaign — on our long-term financial and social health. Of greatest importance to me are the policies and services that preserve our diversity as a community and create for our children a place to grow up that they will be proud to call their hometown.

Of course many other aspects of local governance are of similar importance, such as environmental regulation and sensible land use, strong recreation programs, town-gown relations that are both innovative and respectful, and the range of human services required by our populations in need, to name a few. It all must be affordable and difficult choices lie ahead. Yet most important is whom we elect to make these choices.

In this spirit, I will be voting for Lance Liverman and Liz Lempert for Township Committee. They have track records in local government that demonstrate the strength of their leadership in pursuit of responsible policies that serve our community values. I commend them for their positive campaign addressed to the full array of issues that will challenge our Township Committee in the next three years.

Walter Bliss
Moore Street

Rush Holt Supporter Believes the American Dream Is Under Assault

To the Editor:

A supporter of Representative Rush Holt since he first ran for Congress, I have never been disappointed in my choice of this excellent Representative. He brings to the office an exceptional background in education, science, and teaching; a first rate intelligence, and a true belief that this nation was formed to promote the general welfare of its entire people. He believes that the American dream should be a possible dream for all of us, not just for a well placed few and a pipe dream for the rest of us. His performance in Congress has exemplified this.

That dream is under assault in our country by numerous very powerful right wing players, many of whom are outside organizations pouring support into his opponent’s campaign in an attempt to buy this election.

His opponent, a very wealthy hedge fund manager (remember those guys we are still trying to dig ourselves out of the hole that they helped dig for us), offers a menu of trickle down economics that has always rendered the American dream a pipe dream for most of us. Perhaps he doesn’t need such things as health care reform, social security, excellent public education, or a host of other similar things, but most of us do.

Given the opportunity, we average Americans are a great people. On November 2 I will vote for Rush Holt knowing that he is the one who will help us realize our potential.

David W. Blair
Princeton-Kingston Road

Disappointment Voiced With Scott Sipprelle’s Comment Regarding Eisnstein Alley Initiative

To the Editor:

At a recent campaign breakfast at his home, Scott Sipprelle disparaged Einstein’s Alley and its leading advocate, Congressman Rush Holt, saying, “They put up 19 road signs but they never did anything about it.” It is evident from this comment, that Mr. Sipprelle is unaware of the work that goes on as a result of the Einstein Alley Entrepreneurs Collaborative gatherings or any of the other numerous Einstein Alley events.

I had the privilege of meeting Congressman Holt at the Einstein’s Alley Economic Summit that he convened in December, 2003. At this conference, Representative Holt shared his vision for creating an “entrepreneurial ecosystem” built on New Jersey’s long tradition of research and innovation and fueled by the diverse, highly educated, and strong community members who have chosen to live in Central Jersey. Inspired by Holt’s vision, I co-founded the Einstein Alley Entrepreneurs Collaborative, a grass roots network of Central-Jersey based entrepreneurs that continues to meet nearly every two months for friendship, fellowship, and mutual support. Congressman Holt, or a Holt representative, has attended the majority of our gatherings to ensure that he keeps a finger on the pulse of the Central Jersey entrepreneurial community.

At this time, I was the founding business manager of Princeton Server Group, a startup company that provided affordable digital broadcast solutions for public, educational, and government television stations. Like many other start-ups, my company prospered in Einstein’s Alley. Before being acquired in 2007 by TelVue Corporation (Mount Laurel, N.J.), we created 15 local jobs and helped over 150 community television stations convert from analog to digital broadcasting.

I am disappointed with Mr. Sipprelle’s comment regarding the Einstein Alley initiative. Currently the Entrepreneur’s Collaborative alone has over 150 business leaders, most of whom are creating high paying jobs within the state. I have also always found Rush Holt to be an honorable man, a committed representative, and a true friend of entrepreneurs. It is unfortunate that Mr. Sipprelle is not aware of what is happening in his local business community and has instead disparaged Congressman Holt and these important contributions.

Steven Georges
Co-founder,
Einstein Alley Entrepreneurs Collaborative
Caitlin Court

Words of Support for Scott Sipprelle as a “Different Kind of Candidate”

To the Editor:

The media has been prefacing references to Scott Sipprelle as a “Princeton venture capitalist” or as an individual “who spent the bulk of his career building a fortune for himself.” Meant as a negative labeling, if considered, it is actually an attribute to be an investor and it is erroneous to assume Scott’s financial success has been solely for self interests!

Being a venture capitalist, or being an angel investor, is an affirmation of Scott’s astuteness in understanding the need for seed money in promoting research, spurring innovative start up enterprises, and underwriting technology advances. He is versed in “the economic value of venture capital to national and global economies.” And his ensuing financial abundance does not preclude his attainment of a sound moral and spiritual character, and a realization that money can be used for a positive impact on society. In fact, Scott pledges to “donate his congressional pay to local charities that stress independence from government, not dependence on it” — a statement that underscores his belief that the American way is for individuals to strive for self-reliance, and that charity, while giving basic sustenance, is to also help those in need to become self-supporting, to help the unemployed secure work.

To me, Scott Sipprelle is “a different kind of candidate” with “a concrete, well thought-out plan to make America work again.” He will have my vote on November 2.

Eva Kaplan
Railroad Place, Pennington

Liz Lempert is Commended for Her Commitment to Sustainablilty

To the Editor:

We enthusiastically support Liz Lempert’s re-election to Princeton Township Committee. She has brought a new outlook to Township Committee and has ushered in a fresh era of leadership committed to sustainability.

In her fewer than two years on Committee, Liz has led the effort to establish a Princeton Ridge Preserve, a green belt of open space connecting existing parks and public woodlands, through partnerships with private land preservation groups. She has worked to strengthen the Town’s stormwater ordinances to protect our homes from flooding and to keep our streams clean. Liz continues to push for safer routes for walkers and bikers.

We are fortunate to have Liz Lempert, a candidate with intelligence, responsiveness, and good judgment, representing us. We are supporting her on November 2, and urge others to do the same!

Casey Lambert, Wendy Mager, Jim Waltman, Matt Wasserman

Area Residents Show Support for Sipprelle’s Campaign for Congress

To the Editor:

We can’t believe how many Holt supporters used your paper to misinform the Princeton public about Congressional candidate Scott Sipprelle. New Jersey District 12 deserves better: an honest campaign run by responsible parties who give us the truth about candidates rather than distorting it.

Scott Sipprelle is a successful businessman who has created many permanent private sector jobs. As an entrepreneur he has contributed to growing the economy. It is precisely for this reason that we need Sipprelle in Congress to promote positive growth in America again.

Scott understands what needs to be done and how to make it happen. He also knows what needs to be avoided. He challenged those on Wall Street who were acting recklessly, years before that was a politically popular thing to do. Scott is not afraid to stand up for what is right.

The founding fathers never intended for people to make a career out of serving in Congress. Rush Holt has done his time. Now it’s time to elect Scott Sipprelle.

Peggy Baldwin, Kathy Boozan, James Boozan, Jim Callery, Mary Callery, Asnel Charles, Denise Comsudis, Sean Duffy, Stu Duncan, Kevin Fitzpatrick, Mary Fitzpatrick, George Fox, Joanne Gannon, John Gannon, Robert J. Gleason, Ken Griebell, Diana Griebell, Fernando Guerrero, David Harwood, Lynne Harwood, Jack Henneman, Peter K. Hexter, Ted Horodynsky, John Irving, Lynn Irving, Louise Russell Irving, Jill Jachera, Bill Kister, Jane Labban, Imad Labban, Keli Lynch, Larry Lynch, Chuck Macdonald, Cass Macdonald, Cuyler Mathews, Anita McGlynn, Roland Foster Miller, Ireen Miller, Esther Mills, Lee Eric Newton, Thomas Rooney, Bill Stevenson, Colin Vonvorys, Ruth Wedelich, Carol Wojciechowicz, Kate Wood, John Wood, Robert J. Gleason,

Call For Scott Sipprelle to Publicly Denounce Theft of Rush Holt Signs

To the Editor,

A current crime wave — the theft of Rush Holt lawn signs — has spread from Princeton to Lawrence.

Last weekend signs were stolen from my yard. This childish behavior is not only theft of my property, but also, it violates my free speech rights to publicly support a political candidate of my choice.

A worker at Mr. Sipprelle’s campaign office told me that Mr. Sipprelle does not support the theft of his opponent’s signs. If that is true, it is past time for Mr. Sipprelle to make a very public directive to his supporters that their actions are contrary to traditional political election etiquette in our democracy. It does not speak well for Mr. Sipprelle or his party.

Mary C. Lincoln
Carter Road

Many Thanks to Everyone Who Helped With The Library’s 100th Birthday Celebration

To the Editor,

On October 9 and 10, the Princeton Public Library celebrated its 100th birthday. By all accounts it was a great party for the thousands of people who gathered in the library and on Hinds Plaza. Every day, the library functions as the community’s living room, a place where people connect with words, ideas, community, and each other — and October 10 was no exception. As I watched the smiling faces of people flood in and out of the Library on Sunday, I realized just how irresistible and indispensable our library is to everyone in the community.

Thank you to everyone who had a hand in shaping the wonderful weekend.

Our October 9 Gala, which brought more than 500 library supporters to a transformed Hinds Plaza and library building, was made possible by the careful guidance and leadership of Gala co-chairs Pam Wakefield and Wendy Evans, who were ably assisted by the tireless work of volunteers from the Friends of the Library, Library Foundation, and Trustees. Thanks to their dedication, creativity, and commitment to make this an unforgettable evening, the event was perfect from beginning to end. NPR’s Terry Gross provided anecdotes about the unexpected side of interviewing. Our unique “In Their Own Hand” silent auction featuring beautifully framed, handwritten quotes or drawings from 35 Princeton notables was the undisputed highlight of the evening. To the authors, architects, actors, directors, illustrators, scholars, and coaches who contributed original work, I thank you for your thought, time and inspiration. A special thank you to Charles Heckscher, who created the beautiful letterpress Prose and Poetry Keepsakes distributed that evening.

Our 5K Run on Sunday morning was organized by Jeanine Rosen, who worked for months with local officials and library staff to create a fun, family focused event that brought fitness to the library. We welcomed 180 runners for the race aided by loads of volunteers, the First Aid Squad, and the Princeton Borough and Township Police.

More than 4,500 people joined us on Hinds Plaza and inside the Library for our afternoon celebration on 10-10-10. Thanks to all of the musicians and singers who entertained us that afternoon, our corporate and community partners for underwriting costs, the Princeton Tour Company for running Century Tours, and the Arts Council of Princeton for the spectacular handmade book exhibit. To the Very Hungry Caterpillar, Pat the Bunny, Lilly, and the Wild Thing who entertained children all afternoon, thanks for making books a central part of our event. Thanks to Three Tiers Cake Studio for providing the tasty and spectacular cake for our birthday and to the bakers who provided 1,000 cupcakes — it was the perfect way to celebrate.

Lastly, I would like to give a heartfelt thanks to the Princeton Public Library staff who worked so hard to make this weekend a success, especially Development Director Lindsey Forden, who guided us with grace and determination to make this the best event it could be.

We learned early Sunday morning that our beloved Facility Manager Chris Ducko had passed away. I commend all of our staff members, who buried their grief, put smiles on their faces and carried on throughout the day to provide an unforgettable event for the community. Chris would have been proud of his building and of the people who made it shine on Sunday.

Leslie Burger
Executive Director, Princeton Public Library

Community Yard Sale Benefitted Orphanage in Montero, Bolivia

To the Editor:

Recently my neighbors in the Fisher Avenue-Leavitt Lane area held a yard sale to raise funds for a girls’ orphanage in Montero, Bolivia. There were some who organized the sale, hosted it, and worked on the day of the sale. In addition, there were many people who contributed items for sale. Members of the community came out to shop, and also made cash donations. All this made it possible to raise a large sum of money which will be used for, among other things, a good new roof for the orphanage.

The generosity shown by our community was truly wonderful. On behalf of my daughter, who works at the orphanage, and on behalf of the 115-plus children who will benefit from this gift, I extend hearty thanks to all were involved.

Jane Kupin
Erdman Avenue

Can’t Organizers of Community Events Set Aside a Small Budget for Musicians?

To the Editor:

Two days before the 100th birthday celebration of the Princeton Public Library, serendipitously scheduled for 10/10/10 in Hinds Plaza, I was sitting in the plaza on one of those picture perfect Fall days, warm, sunny, crisp-bright light. I was watching the Adam’s Party Rental crew set up the tents in the plaza as people enjoyed their lunch and children clutched their parents hands with joyous smiles. As a Princeton native artist; musician and painter, I was honored to be asked to perform for the party. Above my head was a sign hanging from the Library advertising Sunday’s celebration. At the bottom of the giant poster I noticed no less then 19 corporate sponsors, Church & Dwight, Glenmede Investment and Wealth, Howe Insurance Group, Firmenich, Johnson & Johnson, Princeton University to name a few. I was reminded of when my band performed at this year’s Communiversity on Nassau Street, a giant back drop on the stage with SQUIBB in giant letters behind us. The poster for Communiversity listed some dozen or so corporate sponsors.

Things sure have changed since I was a kid booking bands for Summer Stage. My sister was one of the first to book bands when the shows were held at Poe Field on the campus, and I have an indelible memory of watching Ray Brower smash his SG guitar wearing an American Flag in the early 70’s. Corporations wanted to stay as far away from that as possible.

Also this past year I was asked by the Princeton Arts Council to donate a painting for their annual fund raiser which benefits visiting artists and pays for their stay in town. I was reluctant to donate this year. The Arts Council had never shown my work or asked me to perform in their new space or invited me to give a workshop. I had fond memories of my high school band playing in the old building so in the end I donated. “It’s such good publicity,” they would later declare.

My band was paid nothing to perform at Sunday’s birthday celebration just as we were paid nothing for Communiversity nor did I receive so much as a tax deduction for the two paintings benefiting the Art’s Council’s “Pinot to Picasso” fundraiser. To my musicians who are coming up from DC and/ or down from Brooklyn I could offer them nothing for their travel expenses let alone their time. They came to play for the love of making music.

Why can’t the people who organize these events create a small budget within these corporate donatorships to give the musicians a little bit for their time and energy? I’m not asking for us to be paid what we might be worth, simply perhaps 20 bucks each so we can get some cash for strings and perhaps a bite to eat after the set.

Chris Harford
Griggs Farm

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