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Issues of Concern to Cape May Taxpayers & Candidate Response

Because the TPA is not able to host our traditional Council Candidate Forum this year, we offered each candidate the opportunity to address several issues of concern to the taxpayers of Cape May.

1. ISSUE: Traditional Quality of Life: Cape May is a combination of a vibrant tourist destination, within a town of declining demographics. The resident population is aging, families are finding it difficult to secure affordable housing and the identity of our small town is losing its traditional quality of life.

QUESTION: What would like to see done to reverse this trend?


2. ISSUE: Property Taxes: Our Property Tax has risen 44% in 10 years. 10 years ago, our property tax was 47% of all city revenue. This year it is 55% of that city revenue.

QUESTION: What would like to see done to reverse this trend?


3. ISSUE: Short-Term Disaster Response: City Council and our Administration have taken a wide variety of unique and unusual actions to accommodate our businesses as they struggle to survive what we all hope will be a short-term disaster. We view these measures as temporary expedients to address a crisis situation.

QUESTION: Do you agree? How should the city return to our pre-Covid 19 Quality of Life?


4. ISSUE: Fiscal Operations: Despite the urgings of TPA, several months ago our City Council adopted the stand-pat 2020 Budget. Revenue projections and planned spending were not adjusted to anticipate the fiscal and operational damage from the Covid Lockdown that we all knew was about to arrive. That damage is here, and it is real. Revenues are running significant deficits, Municipal Services are being altered, and planned improvements are being delayed. 

QUESTION: What is your feeling on finding new revenue sources and/or reducing spending to
                              address this issue?


5. ISSUE: The Sewell Tract: The Sewell Tract is 100+ acres of environmentally sensitive wetland that will have a significant fiscal impact on taxpayers.

Two separate issues have emerged:

  1. the preservation of this critical natural barrier, and
  2. the resolution of a 30-year ligation between the owners of the property, the State and Federal government and a private group of citizens who have joined the litigation.

QUESTION: What is your position on each of these issues?



As someone in Cape May is fond of saying: "you're entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts."
By the terms of our charter, the TPA has no partisan or political agenda and the Association does not endorse or oppose any candidate for office.
Nonetheless we are deeply interested in facts.
Recently the two incumbent candidates for Cape May City Council posted this on their Facebook page that:

"Back in late September, the Cape May Taxpayers Association Board of Directors reached out with a list of questions to be answered by the candidates running in the 2020 election. Majority of the questions were important topics that the residents of Cape May should be informed of. We took the time to thoroughly answer and research these questions, only for them to be kept from the public."

For whatever the motivation, these two incumbent candidates have gotten their facts wrong. On September 25, TPA sent each of the five Candidates the follow invitation:

Because the TPA is not able to host our traditional Candidate Forum this year, we are offering each candidate the opportunity to address several issues of concern to the taxpayers of Cape May. If you so choose, please respond to each of the questions below in a paragraph or two.

We will post your responses verbatim on our website,, and will also send them to each TPA member who has provided us with their email address. We are planning to circulate the responses we receive no later than October 4, 2020.

On October 6, the questions, and the responses of all five candidates were sent to all 700+ members and citizens on our email list. They were also posted on our website and have remained there since then.  Anyone who goes on the website can read all five candidates submissions:

Election 2020 Candidate Responses - Taxpayers Association of Cape May
How the two incumbents concluded that their responses have been "kept from the public" is a question for them to answer since the responses from all five candidates, including theirs, have be available to the public since October 6.
Interestingly, in her responses to TPA questions one of the incumbent candidates cautions that ..."The information contained in this document is not to be copied or reproduced beyond publication as agreed to..."  which seems to indicate that the incumbent candidates themselves were aware of and agreed to the TPA public publication plan when they submitted their responses on October 6.


Communication is the key to reaching our goal.

We need to hear your thoughts, comments, suggestions, complaints and concerns as we seek to evaluate the decisions affecting the interests of Cape May's Taxpayers.

Please reach out to us at:

Hope to hear from you soon!

Taxpayers Association of Cape May
PO Box 46
Cape May, NJ 08204


Select A Candidate
to view their Responses:

Clarence F. Lear - Mayor

Zachary Mullock - Mayor

Chris Bezaire - City Council

Patricia Gray Hendricks - City Council

Mark DiSanto - City Council

News Releases:
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