Signs are dominating the landscape in one quiet New Jersey town as a referendum hits the ballot on July 26. Residents are being given an opportunity to rid the town of outside political influence and take direct control of their home government.

Holmdel Mayor Greg Buontempo joined me on the show to explain how important a "Yes" vote is to restore power to regular people.

The way it works currently is that the backroom bosses have undue influence as the mayor is selected from among the five council members.

The idea of a direct, nonpartisan election in November takes away the power of the elites to choose for people by manipulating through the typical intimidation and bullying that happens out of sight of most voters.

A YES vote means the mayor and council members will have to compete for votes based on their records and plan for the community in a non-partisan general election in November.

This is huge. And if you want to know how the elites feel about it, take a look at the money being spent on mailers to attack the mayor, distort his record and scare people into voting against their own interests. The bosses hate when people have the power to ignore them and elect their own leaders to strengthen home rule.

The bottom line is that when we saw hundreds of new local candidates run in 2021 and have success despite the failings at the top of the ticket, we knew that the people were ready for change. That change happens when local voters take back control from the elites.

The mayor is doing a great job in Holmdel and could sit comfortably in his job. Instead, he WANTS to face the voters in November and put his record up for accountability. That's the sign of a true leader and a man unafraid to stand against the bosses.

It's time to empower local voters, families and business owners. It's time to hold elected officials directly accountable for their actions. It's time to remove the backroom influence that has corrupted our state for decades. VOTE YES on July 26.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.

Click here to contact an editor about feedback or a correction for this story.

New Jersey's license plate designs through the years

More From New Jersey 101.5 FM