Rail line talk leads to frustration at committee meeting

Official claims township may not even have say in the matter

Mayor Pete Scirrotto told a Say No to GCL group member at the committee meeting that “money will stop the GCL, not ordinances and resolutions.”

The public portion of a township committee meeting on Oct. 17 once again was a contentious back-and-forth between committee members and Say No to GCL, who are against the proposed Glassboro Camden Line.

The light-rail transit line that will run from Camden to Glassboro was first proposed in 1996 and is now in its engineering phase. Construction has yet to begin.

- Advertisement -

“We want to be represented,” said Ana Janda, a Say No to GCL member who is a regular at township meetings. “We want the right thing. We asked for a resolution; you wouldn’t give us a resolution. Everybody says it doesn’t matter. Obviously, it mattered, or it wouldn’t have had to be there to begin with.”

Janda also cited a resolution passed by the committee in 2009 in support of the GCL. Before she did that, Mayor Pete Scirrotto told another Say No to GCL member at the meeting that “money will stop the GCL, not ordinances and resolutions.”

“For 30 years I’ve poured my soul into this township,” Scirrotto said. “And that train does not define me. One thing does not define me. You don’t know me; you don’t know anything about me.”

After a short but intense discussion between Janda and Scirrotto, Deputy Mayor Robert Zimmerman asked for a show of hands of those for or against the GCL. Nine people indicated opposition, and four support.

“So, I’ve said this before and I say this with all due respect, there’s over 16,000 residents in this town,” said Zimmerman. “We have a responsibility to all 16,000. Not just the nine that say they’re against it (the GCL), and not just the four who say they’re for it.

“One thing is 100-percent factual,” he added. “We do not have a say on whether the train comes through Mantua Township, period. I don’t know how much clearer we can be about that. 

“We have no say.”

The next township committee meeting will take place on Nov. 21 at 6 p.m.

- Advertisment -