Letter to the community on revaluation from Amanda and Kate

October 8th, 2020

Dear Neighbor,

This year you may have noticed your property taxes changed. This is because all of the properties in Harding were revalued last year for tax purposes and the change is reflected in your latest tax bill. Revaluations are typically done once every ten years.

As we speak to residents, we have come to realize that a lack of communication from the Township Committee about this revaluation has led to confusion about the process and result. We wanted to share with you what we know, and what we talked about at the Meet the Candidates night last Monday night.

For the entire letter, click here.

Elect Richardson and Barry in Harding

Oct 21, 2020, Observer-Tribune

EDITOR: Amanda Richardson and Kate Barry need to be elected to the Harding Township Committee.

Both women were raised in Harding Township and chose to return to settle down. They intimately know the needs and values of our wonderful town.

In fact, these two highly educated, articulate, compassionate women epitomize what is central to Harding.

Their dedication to volunteerism in their hometown is exemplied by Ms. Barry’s serving on the Harding Environmental Commission, the Great Swamp Watershed Association, and the Community Advisory Group for the EPA (federal Environmental Protection Agency) clean-up of the Rolling Knolls superfund site.

Ms. Richardson is a board member of The Harding Township Civic Association, the chair of the Harding Democrats, the co-founder of the Harding Moms group which has gown to over 200 members, and the executive director of the non-prot Corporation for New Jersey Local Media.

During the COVID crisis, Amanda and Kate also spent countless hours spearheading fundraising eorts to send food from local restaurants to frontline workers, coordinated a phone banking campaign to check in with Harding seniors, and ran a food drive in support of the Interfaith Food Pantry and another with the Morristown Democrats to benet nourishNJ.

Ms. Barry has an maaster’s degree in Environmental Science and Ms. Richardson is an attorney with experience in community-building and land rights’ issues.

These areas of expertise are not represented by the members of the Township Committee nor by their opponents in this race. Adding this expertise to the Township Committee would benet our town immensely.

Amanda and Kate have also been recognized for their commitment to environmental protection. The League of Conservation Voters, a nonpartisan organization, recently endorsed Amanda and Kate for Township Committee.

Ms. Barry and Ms. Richardson want to further their contributions to our town by serving as Township Committee members ,and we should overwhelmingly vote them in.

RHONDA ALLEN

Deer Ridge Drive Harding Township

Barry and Richardson deserve your vote

Oct 21, 2020, Observer Tribune

EDITOR: For the good of Harding’s natural resources, I voted for Kate Barry and Amanda Richardson for Harding Township Committee and I encourage you to do the same.

Harding is home to a variety of sensitive ecosystems that are local biodiversity hotspots. Kate and Amanda understand the important benets the swamp, wetlands, meadows, vernal pools, and woods provide to wildlife, including state and federally listed endangered and threatened species, and to us as residents. In Harding we enjoy clean air, clean water, and the natural beauty of the landscape.

Kate and Amanda know these ecosystem services must be protected. Amanda grew up with the Great Swamp NWR (National Wildlife Refuge) in her backyard and has moved back to Harding so that her young son can have the same childhood experience with the outdoors.

She has worked to protect our country’s National Land Conservation System with the Wilderness Society, researched the intersection of climate change and land rights with her organization Resource Equity, and identied and tested models that strengthen resource tenure governance and increased the eectiveness of climate change mitigation and adaptation eorts with the USAID-funded Tenure and Global Climate Change project.

Kate has a master’s degree in environmental science. She currently serves on the board of the Great Swamp Watershed Association, a nonprot dedicated to protecting and improving our water resources, on Harding’s Environmental Commission, and on the Community Advisory Group for the EPA (federal Environmental Protection Agency) clean up of the Rolling Knolls superfund site.page2image11297520

Together, Amanda and Kate will always consider the impacts of town activities on our local ecosystems. They plan to preserve additional open space in Harding and will seek out expert advice on land management and the many environmental challenges facing our region including invasive species and climate change. Kate Barry and Amanda Richardson are the best candidates on the environment for Harding Township Committee.

You don’t have to take my word for it! Kate and Amanda received an endorsement from the nonpartisan group the New Jersey League of Conservation Voters.

JULIA PERZLEY

Kitchell Road Harding Township

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Vote for Barry and Richardson in Harding

Oct 19, 2020, Observer Tribune

EDITOR: I support Kate Barry and Amanda Richardson for Harding Township Committee and want to describe why.

I grew up here and have lived here for 53 years, and I know this town and the people who live here as well as anyone.

I have been very disappointed in the Township Committee’s lack of communication on Aordable Housing, especially on Hurstmont and Glen Alpin, which were arranged without any meaningful input from the town’s residents.

The resulting rezoning of (Route) 202 allows for extreme over development—the possibility of 800 new units—changing the character of Harding permanently. Proactive planning with meaningful resident input, before the township engages in condential litigation negotiations, must be the way forward.

Furthermore, with Mayor (Christopher) Yates at the helm, our taxes have just increased dramatically, especially those on less than three acres. This tax hit came as a surprise to residents and places an added burden on our local businesses that already are struggling to survive.

At the Meet the Candidates Forum, Chipperson oered nothing new, simply nodding along with Yates and stating that she would do exactly as he has these previous years.

Amanda and Kate will bring a better way of doing things, one that is more responsive to township residents and does a better job of communicating to them.

Kate Barry and Amanda Richardson have been endorsed by the League of Conservation Voters and the Working Families Alliance.

Vote for them to keep Harding green, vibrant and an aordable place to live.

PETER ALLEN

Deer Ridge Drive Harding Township

Barry and Richardson perfect for Harding

Oct 16, 2020, Observer-Tribune

EDITOR: I am voting for Kate Barry and Amanda Richardson for Harding Township Committee and I urge you to do so too.

As long-time residents raised in Harding who know the town’s history, people and potential, they will bring a much-needed refresh to the Township Committee.

Amanda and Kate are committed to maintaining low taxes, proactively planning how to address aordable housing mandates in a way that preserves Harding’s character, saving the beauty of Dickson’s Mill Road and preserving our open space.

Amanda and Kate will meet residents “where they are” using streaming, social media and one-on-one meetings to keep residents informed.

Their approach is a welcome contrast from the existing Township Committee’s expressed view that “if residents care about an issue, they should show up at a meeting.” In-person attendance is not always feasible, and as this year has demonstrated, we can improve citizen participation and communication using modern technology.

At the Candidates’ Night, Kate and Amanda engaged in a collegial and substantive discussion of the issues.

In his closing statement, Mayor (Christopher) Yates ignored what they said and unfairly stereotyped them.

We respect each other in Harding and we must not allow the toxic climate outside of our borders to have a place in our local government. It will hurt our community and discourage volunteers from participating in Harding’s civic life.

It’s time for bipartisan representation on the Township Committee. Please vote for Amanda Richardson and Kate Barry.

ELAINE MCHALE

Blue Mill Road Harding Township