Margate Deserves Better. Greater Transparency Needed.

Margate Deserves Better

Calvin Tesler, Aaron Singer, and Patrice “Tish” Calvarese will run for Margate City Commission in the upcoming May Municipal Elections under the slogan “Margate Deserves Better”.

“The current Commissioners in Margate have used their political office to enrich their family members and their developer friends at the expense of Margate homeowners. Margate deserves better from our elected officials,” stated Tesler.

Tesler, Singer, and Calvarese contend that the current administration has failed Margate residents by approving rampant over-building, raising taxes, and giving their family members high paying patronage jobs in the Margate City government.

“Margate has always been a residential community by the sea and the current Mayor and Commissioners have approved building projects that are destroying the residential character of our community,” stated Calvarese.

“Margate municipal taxes have increased 46% since Mayor Michael Becker and Commissioner Maury Blumberg were first elected in 2007,” stated Singer.

According to the NJ Department of Community Affairs, the Margate City Municipal Tax Levy has increased from $17,394,435 in 2007 to $25,353,714 in 2022.

Calvin Tesler is a Professor of History and Writing. In 2021, Tesler received the Writing Arts Award for Excellence in Teaching from Rowan University. He also serves as vice-president of Shirat Hayam Synagogue.

Aaron Singer is a Certified Public Accountant and has served as a Chief Financial Officer in the private sector. Singer is a founding member of The Rose House, which builds residences for developmentally disabled adults, and he has served in numerous community and charitable organizations.

Patrice “Tish” Calvarese is an experienced IT Executive in academic medicine. Her work at DrexelMed includes Cybersecurity and Health Information Technology. Calvarese volunteers her time as a patient advocate for local seniors. Tish and her husband John are parishioners at Holy Trinity Parish.


33 thoughts on “Margate Deserves Better. Greater Transparency Needed.”

  1. I’m pretty happy to see a choice as well. Margate City, in particular the building department, is an old boys club IMHO. The town has rapidly lost its character post-Sandy. That needs to stop. We’re quickly running out of resources, like parking and restaurants, with this high density building.

    But…… what is this new team’s agenda? What do they want to fix? How? What will they be changing? What is going to stay the same? Schools? Biking? Traffic control? New Construction?

    What I care most about, honestly, is not seeing 2nd home owners obtaining voting rights. If they allow that, the non-residents will strip mine this town of everything family-oriented to save , literally, a few dollars on taxes. That just cannot happen.

    1. The second home owners deserve as much say as you. These people are very much responsible for increasing property values. What a small-time thought process by you

      1. Agree. Ralph’s comment is as backwards as it is insulting. The larger, higher cost (and taxes) of new construction fueled by second homeowners subsidized pretty much everything else there via a higher tax base. And of course, the spending in-season by the second homeowners he looks down on with scorn keeps businesses afloat.

        I do agree there need to be some controls on new construction sizes and things, but assuming ill-will from those who literally pay 75-80% of the bills in town is as myopic as is it is ignorant.

      2. You get one vote and it’s where you live. Sorry. Non-residents have different interests. They don’t need schools. They don’t need to fund fire/police/EMT during winter. It’s a conflict of interest. The dont support businesses in the off-season.

        If you want to vote here, make it your primary and pay your income tax. Otherwise, I couldn’t care less what you think. This is a hotel for you.

        1. So then according to your line of “thinking”, maybe then the second homeowners you clearly despise should get a credit for unused services in the off-season? You’re so blinded by anger, you are arguing against your own points and logic. No one is asking for dispensation on unused services.

          It’s also ironic that the second homeowners not only pay 75-80% of the taxes, but typically pay the higher taxes on newer-larger properties but YOU are the one whining about taxes.

          Perhaps since the real estate market is so high now you should sell at a big profit and move since you’re clearly miserable.

        2. If you don’t like it, someone else will buy your house. Not worried about who is paying the tax dollars. There are plenty of locals that would love to move here.

      3. Civics lesson. The country runs the election based on the law that the state of New Jersey passed. No one in Margate can give you the right to vote.
        Here’s the law:

        The registrant must be a U.S. citizen, at least 17 years old but cannot vote until reaching the age of 18 and will have resided in his/her county 30 days by the time of the election. The registrant must not possess the requisite criminal or mental disqualifications. N.J.S.A. 19:4-1.

        1. Chuck Klein aka Ricky Zimmerman

          You are correct. Only full time registered voters can vote in the local election.

          However, the 2nd homeowners and full time residents want to have their concerns listened to by the Margate administration.

          The current administration does not listen to residents as evidenced by their actions.

          All of the 2nd homeowners know they do not have a voting voice.

          They just want a forum to be heard.

          No broadcasting of the Commissioners meeting by Zoom. Are the commissioners afraid of being transparent to all in Margate? You bet cha! Too much to cover up.

          Vote Blumberg and his two new cronies out Margate needs change not more of the same.
          Amodeo and Tom Collins of Colmar standing outside of Casels to find support is demonstrating that they want the same old rule.

          Maybe we will find out soon why Amodeo is not. Running????

          It is clear why Becker is not running.
          Too old along with cognitive and physical issues. he hot his money nos time to retire!

          Vote them out!


      Thank you for caring. as a full time resident of Margate I’m so glad to see candidates who want to be responsive to homeowners who care about keeping Nargate beautiful and not some concrete jungle as other waterfront communities

  2. I deeply care about property tax. Sure, Margate is collecting more taxes from all the high-priced sales happening the last 2 years. Fine, those buyers signed up for those taxes. But when I bought my place in Margate, it was before all this ridiculousness took off. You know, when a $450k house didn’t sell for $900k.

    So far my property taxes haven’t changed that much. Great! Will there be a reassessment to the new appraisal value in the future? Cause I really didn’t sign up for a 2x increase in property taxes since a bunch of people decided it was a good investment to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on a house where the local economy can’t support that sales price.

    Please don’t rope me into the “stupid spending crowd”. I’m financially conservative and would be furious if the decisions of others affect my bottom line.

  3. Margate Elite Residents

    Margate still provides LONGEVITY PAY to employees. Margate officials refuse to allow remote participation of municipal meetings via ZOOM online video conference. So called ‘Friends of Margate’. With friends like them, who needs enemies? Maury Blumberg is THE WORST !!!!

  4. I, for one, am delighted to hear that there could be a change in Margate’s Administration. It is a long time coming.

    As a non-resident homeowner, I’ve noticed concerning shifts in the town over the past 30 years, and I believe it’s time for this change. Margate appears to be moving away from its roots as a residential community that values its natural beauty, which is troubling for someone like me who values the town’s character.

    Moreover, it seems that this character change has been happening without adequate input from non-resident homeowners like myself. For example, “open administrative meetings” are scheduled and conducted in manners that seem not to consider the input from the majority of Margate’s community. About 2/3 of Margate homeowners are non-residents who pay about $39M of its $59M real estate taxes. Utilizing modern teleconferencing technology could help to facilitate interactive input from those who cannot attend in person, yet the current administration has clearly and seemingly deliberately avoided offering such opportunities. Other contemporary ways of communicating with homeowners likewise seem to be shunned by the current administration, a clear opportunity lost!

    Additionally, community-based advisory committees, such as those for parks and recreation and zoning, could provide valuable feedback to the Administration. However, I have yet to see evidence that non-resident homeowners are being invited to participate in such committees.

    Regarding Ralph’s comment, I understand the concerns about granting 2nd home owners voting rights in our community. While voting rights changes are unlikely to ever occur, I can understand why there would be concern about the potential impact on Margate’s values and way of life. However, it’s unfair to assume that all non-resident taxpayers have an agenda to harm the town. Many non-resident taxpayers, including 2nd home owners like myself, are invested in Margate’s community and want to preserve its character and way of life. They contribute to the town’s economy, support local businesses, and fund essential services such as our schools, parks, and infrastructure. It’s not fair to generalize them all as being solely interested in saving a few dollars on taxes.

    That said, and given the current voting policies, I believe that it is important to have a balanced approach to representation in Margate. The current administration has fallen short in this regard. We should work together towards solutions that preserve the town’s values and way of life while ensuring that _all_ members of the community are valued and represented.

    1. I agree with you, Joel. I love the character of Margate, which is slowly eroding. I want to see our schools preserved. Same with our ball fields and parks. 2nd homeowners don’t need these things. It would be very easy to strike the line items and ship our kids off to other schools or sell our park land. That would be devastating for our community. I need a solid commitment from whomever I vote for that 2nd home owners will not have say in these things.

  5. Ralph seems to be misguided and does not understand economics.

    Ralph. Only 11 states allow 2nd homeowners to vote in local elections ONLY!
    Two near us are Connecticut and the other is Delaware.

    To allow all taxpayers to vote requires a Constitutional change , not a local change.

    Time for a change. The Three Amigos and their had picked .slate will ionly continue to build and take care of themselves and their friends.

    Becker’s nephew and Amodeo’s son in law as a candidate…. Really.

    Horn, Beckers hand picked School Board President.

    Time to change!!!

    1. Not that misguided. A large group in Ocean City has been trying to allow non-residents to vote for years now. It may happen.

      In the past this wasn’t a concern since we had a large number of year round residents. This is changing. I think it’s vital that we take preemptive measures to ensure our children have schools to ride their bikes to. Otherwise this island is just big string of Atlantic City style single family hotel rooms.

      1. The slate that is opposing the old boys network are only interested in lining their pockets as well as those of their friends and family.

        The new Slate is fully in support of the schools City services and the residential quality of life in Margate.

        No one wants to vote here who can’t.
        They understand that.

        What they want is to be heard and have their point of view considered.The current and proposed slate could care less about the city. Only what is hood for them.

        Without the 2nd homeowners who pay the vast majority of the taxes ,your schools would be less than 2nd rate.

        City services would terrible and this town a poop hole during the winter months.

        Be thankful got all tax payers.

        Regarding voting, the State of Nj would need a Constitutional Amendment to allow 2nd homeowners to vote locally ,only.

        1. That’s exactly what I want to hear. The new slate needs to put, in writing, what their agenda is. I’m not just going to vote for people because they’re new. They need to lay out a plan for the upcoming years.

          To reiterate what I want to see:

          -Promise to keep schools running to a reasonable degree. Sure, enrollment might be down, but it’s not ship our kids to other districts down AFAIK.

          -Promise to keep police, fire, and EMT funded within reason during winter. We don’t want rent-a-cops destroying our city in the summer. Police are the stewards of our city. We need the best personal available.

          -Promise to support local businesses, within reason. Small business is the character of our town. We’ve already given some of it up to the golf course and water park. Let’s not make this residential town Wally World.

          -And a nice to have would be controlling building density. No more tearing down homes to put massive duplexes/triplexes in their place. We don’t have enough parking, shops, and restaurants to support the load. The island is already becoming uncomfortable congested in the summer.

          -I’d also like to see improvements in traffic management and bike safety. The road diet helped, but it’s still ridiculously unsafe to bike around here. Drivers are aggressive. I rarely see bad drivers pulled over. There’s also a ridiculous number of drivers smoking pot while driving. We have kids on the streets. Set an example that impaired driving has a zero tolerance policy in Margate.

          1. I believe they want all that you want, plus transparency. Honesty.

            Set a nepotism policy. Get rid of cronyism.

            Find the best people to run our city offices, not just those from around the dinner table.

            Get competitive bids for building product’s and not just from Colmar.

            Keep the moratorium to keep high rise buildings out of Margate. Like Ventura’s.

            Tear down or finish Lamberti’s on Amherst.

          2. The old slate with their anointed replacements only want to continue lining their pockets and enriching family and friends.

  6. Joe Di Girolamo

    Glad I sold my home and moved
    Taxes have been very stable in Margate for years.
    I lived in Margate for 39 years
    Now you want to put people in who have no government experience ???
    Wow glad I moved to Longport

    1. Last I checked, Collins and Horn lack that same experience.

      Blumberg sits on the Commission and says and does nothing. He sat and watched million of dollars being stolen in the Rx thefts

      And you call that experience?

  7. Margate needs new blood. Our city needs an updated City Wide Development plan. Our zoning and planning boards are ruled by old ideas.

    New rules should include sensible building regs that establish building size, exterior lighting limits, and green space. Margate is being concreted over.

    There is little enforcement of green coverage because the old development plans are too weak.

    The foxes are ruling the hen house in regards to building. All may be relatively legal, but it sure changes the feel of Margate.

    I think any new administration will have to work hard to develop a long range plan to preserve what’s left here after years of sleepy, tired oversight.

    We should have the best schools in NJ. Although local talent may be qualified for employment, it is not necessarily in Margate’s best interest to hire family. It does not pass the smell test.

    “Vision” as suggested as a quality for electability, has been lacking in the past. There are so many examples of poor or lazy governance in the recent past.

    I will admit that new faces in City Hall are no guarantee of a better future for Margate, but Margate has to stop the dismal lack of progress in preserving everything that has made us a wonderful town.

  8. All fair points, Ken and far more reasonable and less confrontational/accusatory than others. Part of the challenge is that many locals long for the Margate of 40-50 years ago, and that’s just not going to happen. While you can have better controls on building rules and requirements, there are going to continue to be tear downs of older/smaller properties based on supply and demand. And the most unreasonable locals doesn’t want THAT, even if better controlled-constrained in terms or design and size.

    1. I understand our older, local mind set. Some feel that a new administration has no experience. I think someone should point out that neither Horn nor Collins has any, and Blumberg has never been a good commissioner. At least your team has the same passion and a much bigger toolbox of experience. Clearly a new major overhaul of our city building plan is necessary. It is not like reinventing the wheel – other beach communities would gladly share their more updated resolutions to our current problems.

  9. First and foremost I do not want to hide the fact that I am not a Margate resident but have lived next door in Ventnor for almost 40 years but I am a DOWNBEACH BUZZ subscriber and I have been reading all of the comments about the upcoming Margate election.

    Unfortunately this election cannot resolve the residents versus nonresidents voting situation which has been on the battle field in New Jersey forever. There are good positions for both sides but in a scale of 1 to 10 it is a minus 953 that that will ever change in New Jersey.

    But now to your current election.

    Many many years ago, the Ventnor residents were saddled with a 16 year mayor. The election battle cry was very simple, “ENOUGH is ENOUGH”. Fortunately that mayor became history. Then the Theresa Kelly team came into office and one of the first things they introduced was a two term limit. If you can’t get things done in 8 years you should not be running for office.

    I personally asked all 3 current candidates (before Ms. Mento) if they would leave that ordinance in place if elected. They all 100% agreed. However as fate would have the Kelly Administration missed one little final step and that term limit ordnance was not validated which only recently was brought to the public’s attention. And of course that pre-campaign promise has gone missing.

    Not at all unusual for politicians to change their minds when “THEIR” term is up.

    So Margate voters step up to plate and ask your current candidates if they would endorse that two term ordinance. You currently have one elected official in office for 16 years. It is time to move on.

    I have not personally met any of the candidates running this year but I have had the opportunity to speak to Mr. Singer by phone. I have also read the resumes for the challenging team of Calvin Tesler, Aaron Singer, and Patrice “Tish” Calvarese and I am impressed.

    They do not endorse the “Good Old Boy” philosophies of continuing to tear down the history of Margate and replacing it with another Ocean City concrete community. Do your homework and vote carefully.
    Good Luck!

    Richard Gober

  10. The Margate Monitor was an almost great idea until you vilified Dr. Sokolski. He has nothing to do with this election. He erred and will pay for his poor judgement, but your featuring him in this political advertisement was way below the belt. I think poorly of your choices and now have doubts about your electability.

    1. Isn’t the doctor a criminal who took part in the RX thefts?
      Was he convicted or plead guilty?
      This was part of the Blumberg lack of oversight or dereliction of his duties as Commissioner of Finance.
      Are you condoning his actions and lack of action by Blumberg?

      1. If you took the time to read my response you will see that I did not condone the Dr’s crime, however why add more insult to his injury by dragging him into a political race. Blumberg is the point of our interest. He was in a position of city financial oversight- put the blame where it belongs.

        1. Didn’t the Blumberg slate drag a person in by slandering him. Calling him a political style boss.
          Telling people he committed election fraud. Such crap!!

          Do not lecture us on what is correct or not.
          The doctor is a convicted person.

          The Blumberg team tried and falsely accused someone to hurt a person’s good standing and his business reputation.just to sway. Oters and in doing so insulted all members of ouf community especially those from Philly who chose to make Margate their home.

          This is who you want to lead our city?
          Give us a break!!!

          1. You have unfortunately misread or misinterpreted my posts. Your obvious anger leads no where. You are mixing up apples and oranges. Honestly, I am confused by your reaction.

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