Hightstown Borough Council Candidate Profile: Skye Gilmartin
Patch posed a series of questions to each candidate.
Name: Skye Gilmartin
Running for: 3 year term
Why are you running for council?
I have lived my whole adult life as an activst and an advocate, believing passionately in the democratic process. Now, having spent the last year serving on the Hightstown Borough Council, I have a thorough understanding of what I am committing to, what the issues are, and what I have to offer. I've developed healthy relationships with the Council members and the Mayor, as well as citizens and community groups, based on mutual respect, open communication, and teamwork. I want to continue to be part of the effort to move Hightstown in the right direction, without the divisiveness of personal agendas or partisanship.
What are the three issues most important to you?
I, John Archer, and George Serrano are running on a common sense platform of:
Stabilizing Property Taxes: Why just stabilize and not promise to "Lower Taxes"? I am very proud to be part of the Council that put forward the first flat tax rate in 14 years. Unfortunately, I must acknowledge that we may not be able to do that next year. State Aid is dwindling, the Borough faces many tax appeals, employee costs (contractual increases, healthcare) will rise, and though it is yet to be determined, the expense of Hurricane Irene's damage is sure to be substantial. While we intend to make every effort to control spending, and increase revenue streams, we refuse to make naive campaign promises of lowering taxes.
Quality of Life: This has a different definition to everyone that you talk to , so for a Councilperson, it is very important to listen to residents, and follow through in whatever ways possible. It can mean speeding on one person's street, overcrowding on another, or excess garbage and disrepair in someone's neighbor's yard. What it boils down to is communication, follow through, and enforcement, which is the 3rd point in our platform.
Public Safety: We need it. We need to support all aspects of it. The people of Hightstown want Law and order, Enforcement, Communication and Teamwork.
On a final point, I would reiterate the importance of Communication; In order to maintain or have more Shared Service agreements, we MUST communicate in a healthy and respectful way with all of our Municipal neighbors. In order to be a player in creating Countywide (regionalized) services, we must have a better, more active relationship with our county and state level leaders. Most intimately, we must listen to our residents in order to truly represent and advocate for them.
Why should residents vote for you?
Hightstown is a special place that we have all chosen to live, NOT because the Council is great. Hightstown is special because our Residents, our Volunteers, and our Business owners are great, THEY make it special. As a Councilwoman, I will strive to represent all of those who work so hard to make Hightstown the place that we are all so proud to call home.