Tag Archives: John Giannangeli

Trustee Giannangeli falsely accuses Planning Commission Chairman James Carter of lying yet Giannangeli was the one who lied

At the August 12, 2014 Oakland Township Board meeting, Trustee Giannangeli defended the appointments the Supervisor wanted to make to the Planning Commission by denigrating his fellow Planning Commission members.

At the September 2, 2014 Planning Commission meeting, Planning Commission Chairman, James Carter asked Giannangeli to explain his comments to the entire Planning Commission.  John not only denied saying what he said, but called James Carter a liar and then refused to explain his accusations.  He did not have the courage to express his concerns ‘in person’ with his fellow Planning Commission members.

During the discussions that occurred at the August 12 Board meeting, Trustee John Giannangeli made several negative comments about the Planning Commission. These comments were used to justify appointing three new members to the Planning Commission (in addition to the two relatively new members that they appointed previously). The Planning Commission consists of seven members. There are now only two experienced Commission members as they undertake revisions to our Township Master Plan.

Trustee John Giannangeli is a member of the Planning Commission.  He made a recommendation at the Board meeting that the Township should set ‘term limits’ for the Planning Commission and other positions in the Township. He also made the following statement about the Planning Commission:

“They think they own the Township, not the residents. I sit on the Planning Commission and I listen to those comments they make sometimes and I keep my mouth shut.”

At the September 2 Planning Commission meeting, Chairman James Carter asked Trustee John Giannangeli to explain the comments he made at the August 12 meeting. Giannangeli denied that he recommended ‘term limits’ for the Planning Commission members, even though the recording of that meeting indicated that he had made that recommendation. Giannangeli even accused Carter of lying!

When Carter asked Giannangeli to explain his comment about the Planning Commission acting like “they own” the Township, Giannangeli got very defensive and refused to explain the comment he had made at the August 12 meeting. He appears to only have the courage or ‘backbone’ to express his opinion when he has others present to defend him!

Here is a video of the discussions that occurred at both the August 12 & September 2 meeting:

Why is this important to the citizens of Oakland Township?   Oakland Township is a highly desirable community. This did not happen by accident. The past Planning Commission members played a major role in making Oakland Township what it is. Our Supervisor wants to change it by appointing new people to the Planning Commission.

John Giannangeli is an UNELECTED Trustee that Supervisor Gonser nominated for the position created when Trustee McKay quit. He is also the Board’s representative on the Planning Commission.  This summer, John was voted in as a Republican candidate for Trustee for the fall general election. It was an unopposed primary race. There were two candidates for two positions, yet John Giannangeli received 31 fewer votes than the other candidate, Robin Buxar (1329 vs. 1360).

Did those 31 voters have a better understanding of who John Giannangeli really is?

The citizens will have an opportunity to vote for (or against) John this fall in the general election. Since there are two Trustee positions and no Democrats or Independents on the ballot, maybe a “write in” candidate could fill that seat and change the makeup of our Township Board.

We will have two more years of Gonser’s tyrannical leadership. However, we can impact our future NOW by finding a ‘write-in’ candidate to run against John Giannangeli this fall and take back control of the Board by replacing Gonser’s extremist ‘puppet’.

Richard Michalski

Here is a related link that is worth revisiting:

Township Board appoints John Giannangeli to vacant Trustee seat. Will the real John Giannangeli please stand up?


Supervisor Gonser incorrectly blames others for failure to be prepared for employee health care decision

At the August 12, 2014 Board meeting, the Board was forced to make an uninformed decision regarding the health care plan for Township employees.  The Township employee health care plans take effect on September 1 each year.  The Board decided to ‘opt out’ of the cost share obligation of Public Act 152 of 2011, and continue the current coverage for employees. This decision was made since no one on staff looked at alternatives in time for the September 1 deadline.  They also had not looked at the carry-over plan that was approved.  The Board had virtually no time to review or make an informed decision on this matter.  This is clearly an example of poor planning on the part of our Supervisor and Township Manager.

John Giannagelli indicated that he was disappointed that they had to ‘opt out’.  He thought that maybe the 152 plan options would have been better for the Township.  Supervisor Gonser then stated:

“Unfortunately, this was not identified earlier… really last year.  It was completely missed”

Here is a video of that discussion:

Why is this important to the citizens of Oakland Township?  Terry Gonser continues to deflect any criticism on issues for which he bares responsibility.  Attempting to blame this issue on someone (our former Manager) from over a year ago does not pass the credibility test (sounds like Washington doesn’t it).

The current manager, Ann Capela, has been on staff since February, and certainly should have been able to investigate the health care options during the past 6 months.

Our supervisor has repeatedly stated how many hours he spends at the Township Hall.  His presence may actually be preventing our Township Manager from doing her work. Gonser needs to get out of the way, and let the staff do their work.  He also needs to stop blaming others.

I was once told, “Poor planning does not constitute an emergency!”  This is clearly a case of ‘poor planning’, yet our Supervisor continues to ‘fire’ the experienced planning individuals on our Planning Commission, and wants to provide the Planning Commission with his ‘strategic planning vision’.  Does he merit that trust? I think NOT!

Richard Michalski

Oakland Township’s controversial Planning Commission appointments

As reported previously on this website, there were three new Planning Commission appointments made at the August 12, 2014 Oakland Township Board meeting.  These three new appointments are in addition to two other recent appointments (Hein and Giannangeli).  There was considerable controversy over Supervisor Gonser’s nominees, but in the end, all three were appointed.  All were appointed though split decision votes.  The issues raised were:

  • Appointing a non-resident to the commission
  • Appointing a builder and real estate broker to the commission
  • Lack of planning experience on Commission, with 5 new commission members, as Township begins Master Planning process
  • Lack of geographic diversity – 5 of 7 commissioners are now from the Southwest quadrant of Township
  • Lack of age diversity
  • Lack of gender diversity
  • Concern over Gonser’s yet undisclosed ‘goals’ for his Master Plan ‘vision’
  • Concern that some of the individuals appointed “are going to do something for him (Gonser)”
  • Appointing an individual that admitted not having the time to fulfill his previous responsibilities as a Tax Board of Appeals member
  • Lack of using a robust selection process 

These concerns were raised by several Board members as well as concerned citizens, yet the majority of the Board approved Gonser’s nominees.

Planning Commission Chairperson, Jim Carter, made several recommendations for the Board to consider before making any appointments.  He indicated that these had previously been communicated to Supervisor Gonser.  He read the statutory requirements for the Board’s appointments to the Planning Commission.  Here are his recommendations:

  • Experience – consider reappointment of current commissioners since Township Master Plan is under review and there are already two inexperienced Planning Commission members
  • Training – nominees should attend state sponsored Planning Commission training
  • Geographic diversity – have representation from all quadrants of Township
  • Gender diversity – include women for appointment
  • Age diversity – include range of ages

Jim concluded by stating:

“New candidates are being considered as a result of the Supervisor’s desire to his stated goal of ‘Going in a new direction’.  Please consider the qualifications based on good Planning rather than political motivations.”

Danny Beer nomination

Supervisor Gonser nominated Danny Beer, who is NOT a resident of Oakland Township, but owns Lyon Gear in the Southwest Quadrant of the Township.

Treasurer Langlois stated:

“Until we have exhausted every avenue for putting a resident on the Planning Commission, we do not need to look outside the Township.”

Trustee Bailey concurred.

During Citizen comments on this appointment, Frank Ferriolo stated:

“This appointment is the antitheses of what . . .  how this Planning Commission should be placed.”

“This representation of an overweighted section of the Southwest is incredible.”

“He (Gonser) obviously has a ‘goal’ here. Some of the people that he is appointing are going to do something FOR him.”

Reg Brown, a resident that had taken a 7 week class on Planning at his own expense, stated:

“I previously asked (the Board) that Mr. Carter (PC chair) present a summary of people who are currently on the Planning Commission so the Ordinance can be complied with. For some reason, that has never been done.  I think more work is needed on this.”

The vote for filling this position was then taken.  Danny Beer was appointed by a 4 to 3 vote.  Gonser, Reilly, Thalmann and Giannangeli voted in support.  Buxar, Bailey and Langlois voted against the appointment.

Gary Kwapis nomination

Supervisor Gonser nominated , Gary Kwapis, an Architect who lives in the Southwest quadrant of the Township to replace Barbara Wolak.

Janine Saputo (one of only two women on previous PC) reiterated the recommendations made by Chair Jim Carter, and asked the Board consider reappointment of Barbara Wolak to the Planning Commission.

During citizen comments, Frank Ferriolo stated:

“We are looking at a Master Plan going forward where we need HISTORY.  Look at what you are creating.”

Reg Brown stated:

“Experience is valuable!”

Trustee Buxar expressed concern over the makeup of the Commission:

“Five of seven members live in the Southwest quadrant of Township.”

Treasure Langlois stated:

“Right now between the 6 sitting Planning Commission members we do have representation from all four quadrants of the Township.  That will drop to two, and we will have five (with Gonser’s other nominee included) from one, one from another, and one from outside the Township.  THAT IS NOT BALANCED TO ME!”

She went on to say:

“Having been on the Planning Commission briefly, I think Planning Commission experience is valuable.  I would have grave concerns about a Planning Commission with very little Planning Commission experience.”

Langlois did say that she would support Gary, but would not vote for another person from the Southwest Quadrant of the Township.

The vote for filling this position was then taken.  Gary Kwapis was appointed by a 5 to 2 vote. Gonser, Reilly, Thalmann, Langlois and Giannangeli voted in support.  Buxar and Bailey voted against the appointment.

Anthony Scaccia nomination

Supervisor Gonser nominated, Anthony Scaccia, a Builder and Real Estate Broker who lives in the Southwest quadrant of the Township to replace Roger Shultze.  Anthony is also currently an appointee to the Tax Board of Review. After his introduction, Anthony admitted that he was not able to ‘focus fully’ on his responsibilities on the Tax Board of Review because his clients were ‘trying to reach him’ during the reviews.

Here are Anthony’s comments:

“It has been very difficult  for me to focus fully on what I have been doing at the Board of Review because it was happening during the daytime hours when I have a lot of clients trying to reach me.”

He went on to say that he wanted to support the Township, but on a different Board “when I would not have to be available during the day.”

Treasurer Langlois commented:

“The business he conducts in the Township would put….there would be a number of instances where he would have to recuse himself from something, or there would be the appearance that his vote or decisions were based on his business, and I don’t think we need that in the Township.”

Trustee Bailey said:

“As a former Planning Commission member for 20 years, I must say that I do object to having a Planning Commissioner where his day job is being a builder… Their point of view is going to be biased……”

Resident Frank Ferriolo commented that the Planning Commission is going to be ‘out of balance’.  He went on to say that the only time he has seen Mr. Scaccia at Township meetings is after Gonser asked Scaccia if he would consider being appointed to the Township Board (McKay replacement) or Planning Commission (Roger Shultze replacement).

The vote for filling this position was then taken.  Anthony Scaccia was appointed by a 4 to 3 vote. Gonser, Reilly, Thalmann and Giannangeli voted in support. Langlois, Buxar and Bailey voted against the appointment.

The Planning Commission is now populated with 5 new Gonser appointments.  Danny Beer does not live in the Township, but his business is in the Southwest quadrant of the Township.

Here is a map showing where the previous Planning Commission members lived: (click on map to enlarge)

Previous PC representation

Here is a map showing where the current Planning Commission members live: (click on map to enlarge)

New PC represetation


Clearly the Planning Commission no longer has the geographic diversity that Planning Commission Chair Carter had requested.  In fact, Jim Carter’s recommendations fell on ‘deaf ears’.

Why is this important to the citizens of Oakland Township?  Gonser has stated he wants to take the Planning Commission in a ‘new direction’.  He has not publicly stated what his ‘vision’ is, however, he has told Planning Commissioner Ron Hein that he intends to provide the Planning Commission with ‘strategic direction’ to use in formulating our new Township Master Plan.  The Master Plan has historically been a ‘bottoms up’, citizen input process.  Gonser will now make this a ‘top down’ process.

Gonser now has five members of the Commission that may fulfill Frank Ferriolo prediction:

“He (Gonser) obviously has a ‘goal’ here. Some of the people that he is appointing are going to do something FOR him.”

The citizens of Oakland Township need to get involved in the Master Planning process so it does not become “Gonser’s Plan” based on input from builders, and real estate brokers.  Your input is critical!

One final point.  I was a member of the Tax Board of Review in the 80’s.  I was also a member of the Planning Commission for over 26 years.  Anthony Scaccia’s assumption that the Planning Commission appointment will be less demanding of time is not based on fact.  His appointment to the Commission not only violates the appearance of a conflict of interest, but raises questions why the Board would have appointed someone who has already demonstrated that he cannot commit the time to a previously appointed position.

Richard Michalski

Here are some related articles:

Supervisor Gonser attempts to influence Planning Commission’s Master Plan

Supervisor Gonser demonstrates his lack of knowledge of Oakland Township Zoning

Did Supervisor Gonser try to mislead the citizens, or was he ignorant of the facts?

Supervisor Gonser’s REAL views on trails, pathways, bike paths and environmental protection

Preferential treatment of large land owners

Are you a “subdivision rat”? Supervisor Gonser expresses his opinion!

Here is a video or the Board meeting discussions described above:


Trustee Maureen Thalmann votes to ‘silence opposition’

Voltaire quote

At the June 10, 2014 Oakland Township Board meeting, there was a proposal to revise the “Rules of Order” that the Board had recently approved.  There were three proposed changes.  One of them would have eliminated the opportunity for citizens to speak a second time on ‘subjects not on the agenda’.  Trustee Thalmann made the motion to make the change.  It was seconded by recently appointed Trustee, John Giannangeli.  Treasurer Langlois also indicated that she supported the change.  After discussion and input from several citizens, including one who thought this change was aimed at ‘silencing the opposition’, the motion was voted upon.  Trustee Thalmann was the only Board member who supported restricting citizen input.

As reported previously on this website, at the May 13, 2014 Board meeting, Supervisor Gonser did not allow former Trustee, Mrs. Judy Keyes, to make a comment during the second ‘citizen comment’ portion of the Board meeting.  His action violated the ‘Rules of Order’ that he, and the Board, had agreed upon earlier this year.  His reasoning was that other communities do not allow citizens to make comments twice during their Board meetings.

The following video includes portions of the June 10th Board meeting that dealt with this issue.  It includes comments from a citizen that has historically been a very strong supporter of Supervisor Gonser and the Board.  He very eloquently states the reasons why he does not support the proposed change.  His comments clearly had an impact on the Treasurer Langlois, John Giannangeli and Supervisor Gonser.  However, Trustee Thalmann still felt it acceptable to minimize the amount of time she was willing to spend on listening to the voice of the people she represents, effectively ‘silencing the voice of the opposition’.

Why is this important to the citizens of Oakland Township?  The citizens of Oakland Township deserve elected officials that are willing to listen to their concerns.  Trustee Thalmann, by her vote, clearly is not willing to do so.

Related articles:

Supervisor Gonser violates Board Bylaws and Mrs. Keyes right to speak

Township Board appoints John Giannangeli to vacant Trustee seat. Will the real John Giannangeli please stand up?

At the April 22nd Township Board meeting, the Board unanimously appointed John Gianngelli to the vacant seat created by the resignation of Trustee McKay.  There were 15 potential candidates.  The motion for John’s nomination was made prior to any discussion by the Board on any candidate.  He is a member of Supervisor Gonser’s Friday ‘breakfast club’.

 John indicated on his application that he has “solid interpersonal skills” and is “open to other’s opinions “.  A video of his comments at a meeting held last summer show a different picture.  In his prepared speech at the April 22nd meeting, John indicated his support for ‘transparency’.  His emotional outburst  challenging the video taping of the earlier meeting paints a different picture.  

The Board appeared to have their mind made up going into the meeting.  John’s addition to the Board increases the potential of Supervisor Gonser’s ‘vision’ of Oakland Township being implemented.

There were a total of 15 candidates considered for the position.  At the April 22nd meeting, Trustee Thalmann quickly nominated one candidate, John Giannangeli. Trustee Langlois seconded the motion.  Trustee Bailey suggested that the Board hear from the candidates present prior to taking a vote.  Gonser left it up to the Board.  The Board then heard from the candidates who were present. John Giannangeli was the only one who gave a prepared speech.  They then opened it up for citizen comments.  Here are excepts from the meeting proceedings:

Supervisor Gonser has a ‘breakfast club’ that meets on Fridays.  Many of these individuals have regularly commented at Board meeting on topics supporting Supervisor Gonser’s position.  John Giannangeli acknowledged that he participates in these meetings “to keep up on what’s really going on (in the Township)”.

On John Giannangeli’s application, he claimed “solid interpersonal skills” and is “open to other’s opinions ” as character traits.  At a meeting last summer, John Giannangeli demonstrated a dramatically different side of his character.  He made a very angry outburst against the author of this post because I was video taping the meeting. I was taping the meeting since it was not being video taped by CMNtv.  Here is that outburst from Mr. Giannangeli:

John may claim his outburst comment was taken out of context. If he does, I am more than willing to post the entire video of the meeting.  He may claim his outburst is only a single incident.  If he does, I am more than willing to post other emotional outbursts from various previous meetings.

Stress often brings out an individual’s true character.  John’s spontaneous comments are far more telling of his character than the written prepared speech he gave at the April 22nd meeting.  Please contrast ‘the scripted’ version of John in the first video with the ‘unscripted’ version of John in the second video to form your opinion if he is the right person for our Township Board.

Why is this important to the citizens of Oakland Township?  The appointment of Mr. Giannangeli is another ‘chess move’ by Supervisor Gonser to dramatically change the physical character of Oakland Township by making appointments of individuals with similar “Tea Party” ideologies. Please go to these related previous posts:

Gonser’s lack of knowledge of our Township’s Zoning

Zoning Board of appeals member John Markel’s comments on Zoning

Gonser’s Tea Party belief in a UN Global conspiracy

Richard Michalski