January 9, 2019

Installations and Appointments at Council Reorganization Meeting

By Anne Levin

At the January 3 reorganization meeting of Princeton Council, Mayor Liz Lempert swore in new members Eve Niedergang and Dwaine Williamson. Jenny Crumiller, who is in her final year on Council, was named the governing body’s president for the third year in a row.

The annual meeting at Witherspoon Hall is a celebratory event of sorts. The room was filled with friends and family of Williamson and Niedergang, as well as interested community members. Two representatives from the office of Governor Phil Murphy were in attendance, along with New Jersey Assemblymen Andrew Zwicker and Roy Freiman; Mercer County Executive Brian Hughes; and Mercer County Freeholders Andrew Koontz and Ann Cannon.

Former Council members Heather Howard and Lance Liverman, who were in the audience, were given standing ovations and praised by several members of the governing body.

Council approved a list of appointments to boards and commissions as well as numerous professional appointments. Among them are Trishka Cecil as municipal attorney, Kimberly Lacken as municipal prosecutor (replacing Reed Gusciora, now the mayor of Trenton); Storm Water Management Consulting, LLC; and Michael Barrett as public defender for the Princeton Municipal Court.

In her speech summing up the governing body’s accomplishments over the past year, Lempert said that in the next few weeks Council will take input from the boards and commissions as to developing goals for the year.

Lempert’s speech made brief mention of the town’s ongoing difficulties with its new parking meters. “We’ve received significant feedback, and Council will devote a bulk of our first regular meeting to reviewing the data and citizen comments to consider adjustments,” she said. That meeting is Monday, January 14.

Aside from parking, the biggest challenges of 2018 included affordability and some budget cuts, Lempert said. She cited making the Princeton Police Department “a leaner and more nimble force,” the national accreditation of the town’s health department, the opening of the renovated and rebuilt Mary Moss Playground, and the groundbreaking for
Princeton First Aid and Rescue Squad’s new headquarters as significant.

Each member of Council was given an opportunity to speak. Crumiller stressed the importance of citizen engagement. “Keep those suggestions coming,” she said. “Princeton would not be Princeton without active and opinionated residents.”