Mayor Again, Boonstra Seeks to Improve Quality of Life in Wyckoff

"I love this town... I'm humbled that you have chosen me as your chairman and as such, your mayor for 2013."

Wyckoff welcomed a familiar face to lead its governing body at the township's annual reorganization meeting on Tuesday.

The annual New Year's Day event is the public's first face-to-face look at the new make up of the committee, as well as the governing body's opportunity to appoint board members and select a new mayor and deputy mayor.

Rudy Boonstra was selected as the township's leader, and Doug Christie was selected as deputy mayor.

"It is my distinct honor to have Mr. Boonstra serve as the mayor for 2013," said Committeeman Kevin Rooney, before Boonstra was given unanimous approval by the committee.

"I love this town," Boonstra said following his selection. "I'm humbled that you have chosen me as your chairman and as such, your mayor for 2013." 

"We're fortunate to live in a community regarded throughout the state as one of the most desirable places to live. Our reputation has been acquired over many years through the hard work and dedication of many of our residents," Boonstra said.  

Boonstra, a lifelong resident of Wyckoff, has served on the Township Committee since 2008 and was chosen as deputy mayor in 2009 and mayor in 2010.

"Local government requires tough decisions from its elected officials — 2013 will be no different," Boonstra said. "Residents know that our decisions demand a commitment of time residents trust that their elected leaders will have a vision for maintaining the special quality that Wyckoff provides."

Boonstra said he would work tirelessly for the community with continued enthusiasm and dedication, and do all he could "to protect and improve the quality of life" in Wyckoff. 

Boonstra has been a volunteer firefighter, school board trustee, zoning board chairman, and has worked in the dairy industry for 45 years.

Committeeman Doug Christie was chosen to be deputy mayor, a position which, historically but not by law, leads to the mayor's seat the following year. The position also permits Christie to act in place of Boonstra in his absence.

Wyckoff's previous mayor, Chris DePhillips, served his final year on the committee in 2012 and gave his farewell address before the reorganization meeting.

Have a question or news tip for Wyckoff-Franklin Lakes Patch? Contact editor Joseph M. Gerace at Joseph.Gerace@patch.com, or find us on Facebook and Twitter. For news straight to your inbox every morning, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Jean Hildebrandt January 03, 2013 at 12:16 AM
Welcome back to the mayor's seat, Rudy Boonstra. Rudy has dedicated his life to serving the town of Wyckoff, as a leader and a gentleman with courtesy and fairness to all of Wyckoff's residents. I look forward to his leadership for the next year. Sadly, we have to say farewell to Chris DePhillips and his leadership on the Township Committee. Chris has been, not only fair, but also a hard working member of the town fathers for the past three years. You will be missed, Chris. Good leaders - good men. Well done.
Wyckoff Resident January 03, 2013 at 01:18 AM
Mr Scanlan is a Democrat. The Majority are republicans. Are you expecting the US Senate to elect a republican to lead the senate?! Mr Boonstra is an honorable man and has previously shown that he is fully capable of being the leader that we need.
Chris January 03, 2013 at 01:33 AM
Ok....so let me understand this. Christie was just elected for the first time and he is already the deputy mayor? And Brian Scanlan who actually received almost 400 more votes than Christie, has almost 5 years experience, has demonstrated solid leadership, has once again been pushed aside? Interesting. Maybe we should actually vote for the mayor position and see who is elected.
Wyckoff Resident January 03, 2013 at 02:03 AM
Actually you are incorrect. Mr Christie was not "just elected" ...he has been on the Township committee for a year and has had experience serving the township in other capacities. Once again, I would point out that Mr Scanlan is a Democrat and the majority is held by the Republicans. How long should we hold our breath to see Mr Obama appoint Mr Romney to a significant cabinet post? Perhaps he will even push Mr Biden aside and name Mr Romeny as the new Vice-President!
Tricia Rooney Grover January 03, 2013 at 02:56 AM
Absolutely agree with Steve.
NLTITAN January 03, 2013 at 04:32 AM
Jean - You are so full of it - let me ask you a few questions - how old are you? How old are your kids? I'm the one that had my car vandalized!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I just went to a party - why is it taking so long to find out the finger prints?????????????? Thanks Wykoff police - I love the the papers Villadoms Times - Wyckoff - nothning to report!! Are kiddding me - The lady with the car - $4,500 - nothing to report!!!
Steve Becker January 03, 2013 at 05:23 AM
First let me clarify my previous comment by saying it by no means was meant to impugn or belittle the reputation or accomplishments, nor his dedication to public service and commitment of Mr. Boonstra. He has proven his support for the town through his past service. Rather it was aimed at the backwater style of government this town operates under, the tag-team, relay-race handing off of what is supposed to be the highest office among elected officials and not a plaything of the ruling party, and despite having finally representation from an opposing/differing view and party, the exclusion of that member from ever having his 'turn" at leading the way. For those who have never and will never vote for any of the others on the committee, nor for any member of their party which is proving itself daily on a larger level to be increasingly irrelevant, not having Mr. Scanlan even be considered for the mayor's position is a continued slight. I can think of no other town, city or local government in this day and age that disregards a portion of the voting public this way or operates like some private club where everyone gets a turn to run things except one they consider an outsider. And for those who cite Congress as an example of operating in a similar fashion, can you possibly pick a worse role model? Maybe the committee should consider having the mayor be an elected position, as it is in 99.9999999% of the world, or are they afraid of what the results might be?
Wyckoff Resident January 03, 2013 at 01:42 PM
Hi Linda, I am not sure why you are angry at "Jean" perhaps something from another comment. I didn't see anything in her comment above regarding the police. I am SURE that you are frustrated. I am originally from Southeast Bergen County and had my car broken into 2xs on both occasions there were leads to follow but the police literally just took the report and filed it....no follow up (I know that for a fact.) So, I empathize with your feelings. I can tell you that I have noted a totally different environment on the part of the Wyckoff PD. They actually DO investigate and try to solve crimes. I've been impressed by the tenacity of some of the guys that have gone a step above and thought outside the box to solve a crime. As for your case, I DON'T KNOW if this is the situation in your case but in order for the fingerprints to lead to an arrest they have to have fingerprints to compare to (the criminal has to have done something to have his prints on file.) Perhaps the jerk that this to you has never been arrested previousy and therefore there are no fingerprints on file. So, keep the heat on the police by letting them know that you are not going away but realize that sometimes things take longer than we would like. I have to believe that they will do whatever they can to bring justice. I AM TRULY SORRY FOR WHAT YOU HAVE HAD TO ENDURE. I am proud to live in this town but things like this are an embarrassment to the whole town and need to be dealt with severely.
Average Joe January 03, 2013 at 02:27 PM
Please tell me why it matters if you are a registered Republican, Democrat, Independent or Unaffiliated at the town level? We have many talented and committed people in our community and should encourage more participation from individuals from all walks of life. As long as we all have our community's best interest in mind, I believe the results would be overwhelmingly positive.
Gary Rabinowitz January 03, 2013 at 02:37 PM
@ Wyckoff Resident. Like you, I commend Boonstra, Christie and DePhillips for their hard work. I think most everyone in town does. But Scanlan does as much as them, and demonstrates a healthy professional skepticism that defies the group think and acts as a brake on the majority. As for your "Obama appointing Romney" comment: actually Obama is considering appointing GOP pres. candidate and former US Senator Chuck Hagel. President Clinton appointed GOP senator William Cohen to Sec of Defense. But let's call a spade a spade: the ruling republican bloc can do whatever the heck they want. Just as they receive accolades from voters, they too should give accolades and the honor of Mayor to Brian Scanlan. Most importantly, he's earned it and deserves it. The "party differences" between Democrats and Republicans are meaningless at this level. Cheers GXR
John Margroff January 03, 2013 at 03:19 PM
Congratulations to Rudy Boonstra being selected mayor of Wyckoff. It is great to see someone with long time family roots running our town, He's lived here, his family family roots have been here for several generations,and has seen all the changes in the town, not just another newcomer trying to set the world on fire.
JR January 03, 2013 at 03:24 PM
The Committee cannot simply "consider" having the mayor be an elected position. When local public entities are formed in NJ, they are done so according to statute, which requires the selection of a system of governance. When Wyckoff was formed, the Committee system was chosen. To alter that now would require numerous statutory steps to be taken, it is not as simple as having the Committee "consider" having an elected mayor.
JR January 03, 2013 at 03:28 PM
Happy new year Gary. The "party differences" are especially minimized considering Mr. Scanlan was a registered Republican until he decided to change his affiliation and run for the Committee in 2008 (I believe it was 2008). It is not as if Wyckoff has been graced with a longstanding bastion of the Democratic party in Mr. Scanlan (a "DINO" perhaps?). Frankly, the position of Mayor in Wyckoff is largely ceremonial; however, I still firmly believe that "to the victor go the spoils". If Democrats get a majority, they get a mayor. It's really that simple and nobody that has supported the current system could argue with that.
NLTITAN January 03, 2013 at 03:34 PM
Sorry - Mr. Boonstra looked me in the eye and LIED to me! Don't trust him! Scanlan should be mayor and for two terms since they keep over looking him. Wyckoff residences elected him and I might add by a big margin!!! I don't by that "he didn't want to be mayor" as told to me in person! Again, another lie. That's why I am so mad!
NLTITAN January 03, 2013 at 03:38 PM
Also - Mr. Boonstra is so humble he was elected again - only 4 people voted NOT the town of Wyckoff - I still say residents - elect a Mayor!!!
JR January 03, 2013 at 03:42 PM
Linda, it's reality calling again, you should really answer. There is no way to simply decide to elect a mayor. Educate yourself a little: http://www.njslom.org/magart0307_p14.html
Gary Rabinowitz January 03, 2013 at 03:51 PM
Happy new year JR. I agree, the Mayor position is ceremonial. If this were Tammany Hall or the multi-trillion dollar federal leviathan budget we were talking about, I could accept your crass (but realistic) statement on spoils. But we are not talking about some featherbedded, greased political machine. Or are we? Let's recognize in fact what I hope and think -- that Wyckoff is a decent, fair minded community that can rise above rank partisanship. I don't want to argue or comment ad nauseam if you still think "victor...spoils" should be what we emulate. Let's agree to disagree. But if it's cynical, machiavellian politics that you want, let's similarly keep that in mind the next time a local pol discusses their civic minded spirit of volunteerism. Cheers JR, GXR
JR January 03, 2013 at 04:48 PM
Gary, I agree that my position is simplistic; however, both of us are seeking to have our cake and eat it too. You simultaneously want to portray Wyckoff as a bucolic, non-political town, but question the motivations of the people in positions of power. Which one is it? That's why simplicity is best. As with all other democratic political models, the controlling party appoints members of its party to positions of power when given the ability to do so. This is not reinventing the wheel.
Gary Rabinowitz January 03, 2013 at 05:02 PM
@JR: >"You simultaneously want to portray Wyckoff as a bucolic, non-political town" The residents, yes. The TC/ZB/PB? Not sure, I'm realistic (an optimist with experience...). Much of what they do is non-political, volunteering, rec coaching, etc., the most impactful, most crucial decisions they sometimes make are so bad (or potentially so), that it seems to betray the good things they do or have done, and can only be explained by either a) stupidity (which I don't believe, all of the TC/ZB/PB seem capable and intelligent from best I can tell) or b) some other motive...... When I see people do things they do not have to do -- hold a door for a stranger, give up their seat on a bus to lady, etc, - I assume the good (recognizing only God can divine motives and intent). I think appointing Scanlan Mayor would fall into that category. Best to you JR -- GXR
Gary Rabinowitz January 03, 2013 at 05:23 PM
@ JR: correct my hypothetical if I in any way missed something! TC member 1: "I know we don't have to by law, but face it fellas, we can do whatever the h*** we want here. In recognition of all Brian Scanlan's done, let's appoint him mayor. All in favor, say 'aye'" TC member 2: "aye" TC member 3: "aye" TC member 4: "aye" Brian Scanlan: "thank you"
Q January 03, 2013 at 06:19 PM
@Gary: "Let's recognize in fact what I hope and think -- that Wyckoff is a decent, fair minded community that can rise above rank partisanship." I believe many residents, who want to elect people to office who have the town's best interests in mind, can and do rise above rank partisanship at the local level. Most townspeople, whether they admit it or not, realize that Brian Scanlan is a person who has the town's best interests in mind and understand that he has been a very effective as a member of the TC, despite the efforts of other members to make life difficult for him. It appears that residents will have to wait until most of the townfolk simply decides to vote, without regard for political affilitaion, for candidates, like Mr. Scanlan, that they believe will govern the town best; at that point, we will truly have a wonderful town. Let's hope this happens sooner rather than later.
Wyckoff Resident January 03, 2013 at 07:21 PM
Hi Average Joe. I agree that your national affiliation means little when it comes to local politics however your affiliation does mean that you are on one side or another of the local issues. Mr Scanlon ran AGAINST the people that are in power and has subsequently supported opposition candidates in other elections (Ms Sobin, Mr Hubert, Ms Avia) So there is in fact a clear distinction. During those elections he (as well as those he supported) accused the Repubs of not running the town well I consider myself to be a reasonable person but I am sure that I would not elevate someone to a position over me that I believe has been critical of me. Others have mentioned that the people of Wyckoff have spoken by reelecting Mr Scanlan but I would argue that they also have spoken by not electing the other people that he has run with and/or supported. Those people would have been his base of support within the Township Committee if they had been elected but they were not! I am NOT opposed to Mr Scanlan as Mayor, I am merely stating why I believe it is naive to think that he SHOULD be. Put the shoe on the other foot....if at work there was someone that was critical of you to management and you subsequently had the opportunity to have input into who your new boss would be would you install the person that was critical of you publicly AND has a different vision (to some extent) of which direction to lead your company?
Ed January 03, 2013 at 07:45 PM
Like my leader in Nam told me on the first day on his team: "If you have no intention of rocking the boat, I don't want you on my boat!" Thanks to his open-minded, non-egotistical leadership, we all made it through unscathed (BTW, we still keep in touch 40 yrs. later.) He realized that he was the major but valued EVERYONE'S input, officer or not, and viewed it non-prejudicially. Co-operation is vital in every organization; let's give it a shot or before we know it, Mr. Jepsen will be mayor in two years and Mr. Scanlon will still be left twisting in the wind!
Chris Byers January 03, 2013 at 10:22 PM
If you want a town government run by the best possible people, do away with the party system as several New Jersey towns have done. I believe it was Vernon, which after decades of Republican dominance, put a no-party-system referendum on the ballot for direct vote by the town's residents. The Democrats supported it, the Republicans opposed it, but the referendum passed by a very large majority. Within two voting cycles, all former Republican party candidates were gone, and party affiliation ceased to matter. People were picked for their positions and the record, not their party. How refreshing!
NLTITAN January 04, 2013 at 12:29 PM
JR - I'm educated - all I want is Scalon to have his turn as Mayor - Get over it!!!!!!!!! The people of Wyckoff voted for him - don't you think they want him to be Mayor for a chance?
JR January 04, 2013 at 02:58 PM
Being educated and ignorant are not mutually exclusive. Your repeated willingness to ignore facts and the laws of the state of New Jersey render your positions inane. Oh, and newsflash! The voters of Wyckoff voted for everyone on the Committee, that's how they got there. Should they all get to be mayor at the same time because people voted for them? It really is very simple; if and when Democrats obtain a majority of the Committee, they can nominate the mayor. Very straightforward and simple, and something I would support as I always have.
Wyckoff Resident January 04, 2013 at 09:13 PM
I can see the arguement for a no party system but ultimately you would probably find people that no longer are called Republicans and are called the United Wyckoff (but are still people that WOULD have been Republicans) running against the We love Wyckoff group (people that would have been Democrats previously.) I believe that the town runs well as it is. Sure nothing is perfect but overall I am very happy here. Many things that people are unhappy about are things that local politicians have little control over. Also, I wonder how state and federal politicians treat towns that don't have party affiliation....are they as generous with grants? I don't know....I am just wondering. (In other words would an area with a Repub mayor and committee be more likely to get preference in an area where there is a Repub assemblman, congressman, Governor etc)
Wyckoff Resident January 04, 2013 at 09:27 PM
Hi Ed, First off thank you for your service during that difficult time! I served in the USMC during a much less tumultuous time and was always bothered by the lack of respect and thankfulness shown to you guys so, again THANK YOU! I TOTALLY AGREE that EVERYONE should have input and I don't think that Mr Scanlon's input is not weighed seriously. The idea of being open to other ideas is more important than ever. There has to be outside of the box thinking! Consolidation of services should be considered etc....I am not sure about the garbage/recycling changes but I am glad that they are not just staying status quo and trying to find solutions to cut costs. So, I agree, respect everyone's input for the greater good of the township but that doesn't mean elevating someone to a position. To use your analogy...your Major listened to everyone's idea but he didn't say "hey you know what Mr PFC, I am going to make you the commander over me" instead he maintained his command and thanked the PFC and others for their input. Mr Scanlon does not need to be Mayor, he can continue to offer positive input though. Once he has had enough supporters elected to the TC he can be Mayor....either that or win over the other committee members respect through time.
NLTITAN January 04, 2013 at 11:43 PM
JR - are you for real?????? What the heck are you taking about the "laws of New Jersey". Oh by the way - THEY ALL HAVE BEEN MAYOR EXCEPT FOR SCALON! Please don't tell me I am ignorent - I would love to meet you in person and discuss our feelings. I told the editor of the Patch I'm done explaining myself to people - they take it out of contents - I'm sick of it. I merely state my opinion and it becomes WWII!! Bye JR - how old are you? Yes, it is pertinent!
John A. Unglert January 05, 2013 at 02:51 PM
Wow, this one has really become a tinderbox. Hi Linda C & Ed ! Well, at the risk of getting my head chopped off - Mr. Boonstra and I grew up together. With that said and with the knowledge I am pleased that Rudy is once again Mayor. He has a historical view of Wyckoff that I believe is important to Town governance. He has been instrumental in "buying up" as much vacant property as possible, for the benefit of of the Town. Mr. Boonstra has been working very hard on obtaining the Maple Lake property. Suffice to say Mr. Boonstra has the Town and residents in mind. He has served us all well and will continue to do so. And, farnkly, I like all the men on the TC. Mr. Scanlan has done some good work and has brought the FAR ordinance to fruition. At the same time the balance of the TC has supported Mr. Scanlan's efforts here and elsewhere. I might suggest that if you, as a resident, has a problem or a concern there are two TC meetings each month. Why not attend them ? You can witness the way things really do get done. It is your right to attend and frankly an obligation. You can speak your mind there and you will ne met with courtesy and civility. It is your moment of speech for what you like and dislike. And finally, please to remember, Republicans are for small goverment and financial responsibility. Have they not live up to that ?


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »