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Did Oradell TV Clips Influence Election Results For BOE Candidates?

Oradell officials are investigating a series of videos highlighting BOE candidates Jeremy Griffin and Himanshu Rateshwar.
Oradell officials are investigating a series of videos highlighting BOE candidates Jeremy Griffin and Himanshu Rateshwar. Photo Credit: Elect Griffin and Himanshu Facbeook (Screengrab)

ORADELL, N.J. — People in Oradell are questioning why two Oradell Board of Education candidates including one winner had campaign videos air on public television while three others did not.

Several sources with direct knowledge of the incident told Daily Voice that incumbents Nancy Shapiro, Gregory Derian and Rita Walker were not provided with the same opportunity to have campaign videos aired on OPTV as opponents Jeremy Griffin and Himanshu Rateshwar.

Shapiro, Griffin and Walker won the election, according to results posted on the Oradell website.

The clips aired 35 times between Oct. 30 and Nov. 4, before someone made the discovery and alerted Mayor Diane Didio, who pulled the clips from OPTV, sources said.

Besink maintained he sent one invitation email to all five of the BOE candidates. When asked to produce it by Daily Voice, Besink said that he misplaced it, and also does not have to prove anything.

Shapiro, Derian and Walker said they only received one email from Besink, and that was on Nov. 4, to their campaign email.

All four candidates for Oradell Council were offered opportunities to have video campaigns air on OPTV, Besink said.

Daily Voice placed an email to Didio and OPTV, Wednesday afternoon. .

According to the OPTV schedule, clips were titled the following:

  • meet hr: nov 2017
  • meet jg: nov 2017
  • history of oradell ps: nov 2017
  • what does boe do: boe
  • vote nov 7 2017: vote

The videos were not posted on the OPTV website when Daily Voice checked on Wednesday afternoon.

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