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Freeholder David L. Ganz
Committee Assignments:
  • Budget/Finance
  • Veterans liaison
  • Health Services
  • Public Works
  • Chair, Community Development  
  • Planning  

 


Freeholder Board Representation:
       
  • School Estimate - BCC (Chair) 
  • School Estimate - Special Services   
  • BC Community Action Partnership
  • African American Advisory Committee
  • Planning Board (Alternate)    

Biography

DAVID L. GANZ, first elected Freeholder in November, 2002 for the 2003-2005 term, is currently serving his fourth consecutive term (2012-2014), which he won at the polls in November, 2011, the first democrat in modern times to have a decade of service as Freeholder. The current Dean of the Board of Chosen Freeholders, he has served two terms as vice chairman (2005-2006), chairman pro tempore (2010), and was the chair of the budget committee an unprecedented eight consecutive years (2003-2010), a position he resumed in 2013. He is the current Freeholder Director (or Chair) of the Board of Chosen Freeholders.


An accomplished lawyer, a dynamic author and speaker, he previously served as the 29th Mayor of the Borough of Fair Lawn, New Jersey (the 4th largest municipality in Bergen County) from 1999-2005 (http://www.fairlawn.org/ ). He is also managing partner and principal litigator in the law firm of Ganz & Sivin, L.L.P. of Fair Lawn, N.J. and Ganz & Hollinger, P.C. in New York City, and has a law practice that is focused on litigation, guardianship, real estate, land use, and general corporate work in New York and New Jersey. Now in his 11th year on the Freeholder board, he lists several accomplishments:

  • Chairman of the Board of Chosen Freeholders.  As Chairman, championed the “Politics of Agreement” by reaching across the aisle to forge consensus between Republicans and Democrats, and has been able to garner significant Republican support for the 2013 Budget and several key initiatives.  The Freeholder board, under Ganz, in 2013 also voted to elect Freeholder John Felice (R- River Edge) Chairman Pro Tempore of the board.  As Chair, also appointed Freeholder John Mitchell (R- Cliffside Park) to the important Agenda and Budget committees. 
  • Chairman of the Budget & Finance Committee. As chair, led the committee to cut at least ($500,000 or more annually) to County Budget (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010) from County Executive's Budget recommendations, and more than $2 million in 2013.
  • A consistent supporter of Bergen County’s Cooperative Library System (BCCLS), which allows Bergen County residents to access books across the county from their home library free of charge.  In 2012 and 2013 ensured the BCCLS system remained adequately funded, and as Chair passed a resolution authorizing a permanent line in the County Budget to ensure adequate BCCLS funding in the future.
  • In 2012, introduced a resolution that would restore previously cut funding to Bergen Community College.  As Budget Chair in 2013 was able to successfully restore funding to the County’s community college system.
  • As a member of the Budget committee in 2012, formed a coalition of Republicans and Democrats to reject projected cuts to the County’s Mental Health agencies and keep their funding flat.  Also prevented any further cuts to these agencies in the 2013 budget.
  • Served as principal sponsor of the voter's referendum to increase the voluntary County open space tax from a half mil to one mil per $100 of assessed valuation, raising up to $18 million annually for open space acquisition and use, and author of the resolution-ordinance implementing the new program including an increase to 30% of the municipal recreational component.
  • Introduced "Bergen Wellness", the County drug prescription card program county-wide, offering discounts on prescription drugs to seniors, children and all other County residents, offering a savings averaging 7-1/2% to as high as 41% off of the regular prescription price, discount good at 55,000 pharmacies nationwide. As of the end of January, 2013, the Bergen Wellness program and its predecessor GS Pops prescription drug plan) over 330,000 prescriptions have been filled using the discount programs, with a total savings of nearly $14 million.
  • Introduced "Reverse 911" to Bergen County as already used in Borough of Fair Lawn
  • Introduced "Cafeteria plan" tax savings for Bergen County employees and taxpayers, offering ability of County employees to pay for child care, medical and dental care and related health care services with pre-taxable funds, saving the County 7.65% of all sums deferred.
  • Introduced "Transit Check" plan for Bergen County Employees, offering ability to County employees to use pre-tax dollars to pay for some permitted commuting costs, saving the County
  • Wrote the resolution calling on then -President Bush to release strategic petroleum (oil) reserves to help lower gas prices at the pump.
  • Wrote the resolution to prohibit Members of the Board of Chosen Freeholders from receiving severance packages, "golden parachutes", accumulated vacation pay and sick time, and for other purposes.
  • Wrote the resolution calling on County golf courses to have their flags marked to show the pin's position on the green (front, middle, back) to speed play and increase rate of accuracy for the County's 80,000 golfers.
  • Wrote the resolution from the Board of Chosen Freeholders backing Congressional issue of a circulating coin commemorating the life of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Principal sponsor, Bergen SaVvers Program, [Seniors and Veterans, Volunteers, Emergency Responders]* More than 10,000 Bergen residents use the card that gives discounts at over or among 1,000 stores, services, and provider
  • Korean Community Outreach Program*, Translate Bergen Wellness brochures into Korean; funded wing at Bergern Regional with Korean translators, assistants, and culture; Modernized the Freeholder meetings by changing the bylaws to allow action votes at work sessions as well as full meetings; televises all meetings.
  • Established the CopCars program that allows municipalities to lease-purchase police cars by bonding, rather than paying cash outright, to reflect their three-year lifetime and save municipal tax dollars.
  • Created the SAVEBUCS program that allows municipalities to bond capital items cooperatively to save money and minimize costs *
  • Established the Bergen Muni-banc allowing municipalities and school districts to save money by bonding using the county's AAA bond rating
  • Strengthened the ethics law requiring disclosure of all campaign contributions to Freeholders, Sheriff, County Executive, Clerk and Surrogate *
  • Bridged the Passaic River with a new Morlot avenue bridge, Fair Lawn, replacing a major East West roadway that was unsafe (built circa 1903).*
  • Made substantial cuts ($500,000 or more annually) to County property taxes (2003,2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013) from County Executive's Budget recommendations.
  • Adopted first comprehensive County ethics ordinance requiring full disclosure of all campaign contributions to all constitutional officers and freeholders (2005); *
  • Adopted first public advocate for land use ordinance in any County to allow affected citizen groups representation on land-use matters.*
  • Initiated Bergen Municipal bank to take advantage of off the shelf financing using county's AAA credit rating by municipalities for taxpayer savings.*
  • Resolved and built out Overpeck Park according to settlement terms of lawsuit and master plan after years of prior administrations flouting court ordered funding.(50 years in waiting)*
  • Revising County master plan (land use) - Eliminated ability of the Board of Chosen Freeholders from receiving severance packages, "golden parachutes", accumulated vacation pay and sick time, and for other purposes.
  • Revitalized County golf courses; acquired Rivervale and funded having County golf courses place their flags marked to show the pin's position on the green (front, middle, back) to speed play and increase rate of accuracy for the County's 80,000 golfers.
  • Directed placing of yellow ribbons on County offices until the troops are brought safely home.
  • Modernized the Freeholder meetings by changing the bylaws to allow action votes at work sessions as well as full meetings.
  • Established practice of televising all Freeholder public meetings
  • Stood strong against anti-blue law encroachers
  • Endorsed annual funding to the Martin Luther King, Jr. Senior Center to continue the Intergenerational Afterschool Program that elevates the spirits and minds of both our youth and seniors (2005)
  • Approved grant funding to make the Oradell Public Library handicap accessible (2005)
  • Sponsored grant funding to the Fort Lee Senior Center for expansion of its kitchen to serve the growing number of seniors meals
  • Supported non-profit organizations that offer guidance to our youth as they allocated block grant funding to the Lodi Boys and Girls Club and the YMCA
  • Allocated grant funding to ensure recreational facilities, and also ensure these same parks are handicap accessible, for all children in our communities, as examples are Harte & Herrick Parks in Teaneck and Madison in Paramus
  • Freeholders ensured that the Meals on Wheels Program continued on its successful path by coordinating the coverage of all routes after the withdraw of the Red Cross' Meals on Wheels Service in Bergen (2005)
  • The Board approved the purchase of the Camp Todd property, and worked jointly with the State to preserve further open space (2005)
  • Changed the mode, with voter approval, to allow 30% of County Open Space Funds to be utilized for local (municipal) recreational opportunities.
  • Approved the first Disc Golf Course and its funding (2005)
  • Freeholders voted to preserve and restore the historic 18th century Campbell-Christie House in River Edge, an important structure of the County's past (2005)
  • Restored and funded the Williams Carlos Williams Center, in Rutherford, the only county owned facility that was previously not funded or assisted (2005)
  • Allocated funding for the construction of the West Hall facility at Bergen Community College, which will house laboratories for art and music education, technology conference rooms, radio and television studios and provide the necessary resources to expand education opportunities for our students (2005)
  • Build out of a south-Bergen Campus for Bergen Community College
  • The freeholder granted funding to the Hispanic Institute that improves lives through education, with ESL classes, citizenship classes (2005)
  • Increase of funding for the BCC to hire eight new professors, as part of the budget, to maintain the quality of education as the enrollment of students continually rises
  • Build out of a south-Bergen Campus for Bergen Community College
  • The freeholder granted funding to the Hispanic Institute that improves lives through education, with ESL classes, citizenship classes (2005)

Freeholder Chairman Ganz recently completed his 36th book. He has written on topics from "A" [A Critical Guide to Anthologies of African Literature (African Studies Association, 1973; revised edition 2012)] to "Z" [zoning law, for West publishing, 2010], and many in-between including "The Smithsonian Guide to Coin Collecting" (2008), "America's State Quarters" and "The 90 Second Lawyer". He is a past president of the American Numismatic Association (1993-5), and was appointed by President Nixon to the 1974 Annual Assay Commission (at the time the oldest continuously running commission in government), and by President Clinton to the Citizens Commemorative Coin Advisory Committee where he has been given significant credit for the state quarters program that gave back $7 billion to the American taxpayer. In 2010, he received a Lifetime achievement Award from the Industry Council for Tangible Assets.  In 2012 he was honored by the Bergen County chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) with its “Freedom Award” and by Care Plus, an organization devoted to helping people with disabilities, with its prestigious “Courage Award.”

He has three children; Scott (1982-2013) was a combat engineer in the U.S. Army in Afghanistan, when he suffered a closed head injury; and a U.S. Army veteran at the time of his suicide in February, 2013.  His son, Bruce Daniel Ganz, the Freeholder’s first grandchild, was born in the spring of 2013.  Two daughters, Elyse and Pam are both graduates (2009) of Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton; Pam is working as a paralegal in Florida, Elyse has received her master’s degree at New York University Silver School of Social Work (2013) and is a recently married licensed social worker.

He and his wife the former Kathleen Gotsch, live in Fair Lawn with their cats, Mimi, Habibi, and Mistletoe, one of whom is a shelter rescue.

 



David L. Ganz
David L. Ganz
Freeholder
E-mail
Phone: 201-336-6280