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Mrs. Vernick Announces Co-Campaign Managers CAMPAIGN COORDINATORS…Westfield First Ward Councilwoman and
Republican Mayoral candidate Gail S. Vernick, center, is flanked by her cocampaign managers Sherri Cronin and William J. Sweeney. Mrs. Cronin is active in the Downtown Westfield Corporation, while Mr. Sweeney has served on the Westfield Board of Education and the Architectural Review Board.
WESTFIELD – First Ward Councilwoman Gail S. Vernick, the Republican Mayoral candidate for this November’s election, has chosen William J. Sweeney and Sherri Cronin as her co-campaign managers.
Mr. Sweeney served on the Westfield Board of Education from 1993 to 1996, and chaired its Finance Committee during the 1996 school year. He has also chaired the Architectural Review Board for three of the four years he has sat on that board.
A graduate of the University of Notre Dame and Columbia Law School, Mr. Sweeney has practiced law in Westfield for four years. He and
his wife, Janet, have three children. Mrs. Cronin, a resident of Westfield for five years, is the Director of Enterprise Financial Management for Prudential, where she has been employed for 12 years She holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Mississippi State University.
As a member of the Downtown Westfield Corporation’s (DWC) Design Committee, Mrs. Cronin helped start up the DWC’s Economic Restructuring Board. She and her husband, John, have a 17-month-old son, Daniel.
“I am proud to have these two individuals at the helm of my campaign team,” Mrs. Vernick remarked.
Assemblyman Bagger to Host Campaign Brunch on Sept. 13
Mr. Stoner Begins Campaign With Visits to Neighborhoods Mayor Jardim Urges Jitneys
For Raritan Valley Towns Scotch Plains Democrats Issue
Survey to Obtain Local Input SEEKING VOTERS INPUT...Scotch Plains Democratic candidates for Township Council, left to right, Franklin P. Donatelli, Tarquin Jay Bromley, and Geri Morgan Samuel, review one of the community surveys mailed recently to a sampling of Scotch Plains residences. The trio believe that their survey is the first-ever survey in the township to obtain citizen input on issues confronting local government.
SCOTCH PLAINS -Franklin P. Donatelli, Tarquin Jay Bromley, and Geri Morgan Samuel, the Democratic candidates for Scotch Plains Township Council, have announced the issuance of what they call “the firstever community survey to obtain citizen input on issues confronting the township government.”
Mr. Donatelli, a lifelong Scotch Plains resident commented, “To my knowledge this is the first-ever attempt by candidates for public office to seek in such a broad-base manner the views of the residents during a campaign for the township council.”
Mr. Donatelli added, “The questions in the survey are based upon what the residents themselves have expressed to us as their own concerns during our house-to-house campaign.”
Mr. Bromley noted that, “The survey contains 18 questions. Among them are four dealing with preserving open space in Scotch Plains. This is a major concern of ours and clearly is one frequently on the minds of residents as we meet with them.
“There are four questions related to local government operations including preserving spring clean-up, collection of household garbage, the level of services provided to senior citizens, and whether residents feel that they are receiving an adequate level of services in return for the high property taxes paid.”
Mrs. Samuel noted that, “Townspeople express a yearning to improve the appearance and desirability of our community. They cite 20 years of studying downtown vitalization with little return. They’d like the honky tonk appearance of sections of Route 22 cleaned up through planning and
zoning initiatives. Noise pollution from overhead aircraft is another topic often presented to us by the voters.”
Mrs. Samuel also reported that, “Residents want a more open local government that is responsive and accountable. They see a need for better communication between the Board of Education and the (Township) Council to avoid overcrowding in the schools.”
“Residents question the cost of allowing certain municipal employees to drive township owned vehicles back and forth to work,” the candidate explained.
Mrs. Samuel stated, “The survey contains questions on these items and others because they are issues in the forefront of many residents minds.”
Mr. Donatelli, Mr. Bromley, and Ms. Samuel concluded in a joint press statement that, “The development and issuance of this survey represents a commitment on our parts to reach out to local residents so that they become a part of the local government.
“Should we be elected to the three seats expiring on the council, we commit ourselves to being responsive and accountable to the people of Scotch Plains. Their comments, suggestions, and criticisms will be welcomed at council meetings,” they said.
The candidates reported that any local resident who does not receive a survey may obtain one by contacting any one of them. Respondents should mail the surveys to Post Office Box 453 in Scotch Plains. There is no postage required of respondents as the campaign has provided a postage paid business return.
Assemblyman Richard H. Bagger of Westfield, who chairs the Appropriations Committee in the New Jersey General Assembly, will host his annual campaign brunch on Sunday, September 13.
The event will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at L’Affaire restaurant, located at 1099 Route No. 22, East, in Mountainside. The public is invited, and tickets are available at $50 per person by calling (908) 654-5507.
A patriotic tribute will be offered by retired United States Navy Petty Officer Jim Cava. Officer Cava, who lives in North Haledon, is a decorated combat veteran who served as a medical corpsman with the 5th Marines in Vietnam.
Among the dignitaries who have been invited to attend the brunch are Congressman Bob Franks, representing the Seventh District; State Senate President Donald T. DiFrancesco, New Jersey General Assembly Speaker Jack Collins, and Assemblyman Alan M. Augustine.
Assemblymen Bagger and Augustine represent the 22nd Legislative District. The Seventh Congressional and 22nd Legislative districts include Westfield, Scotch Plains, Fanwood and Mountainside.
Republican leaders and elected officials from Union, Somerset, Morris and Middlesex Counties, and GOP candidates on the November election ballot, are also expected to attend.
Westfield Mayor Thomas C. Jardim recently called for the initiation of jitney service for the towns along the Raritan Valley Line.
This service would serve the dual role of ferrying commuters to and from train stations along the line, and providing more transportation options for senior citizens.
“Like many towns along the Raritan Valley line,” Mayor Jardim wrote in a letter to Raritan Valley Line Coalition members, “adequate and fairly-priced parking is a constant cry of concern among Westfield’s commuting public.
“As the ‘Year of the Raritan Valley Line’ is quickly coming to a close, I believe that we must act now to secure funding for similar jitney or shuttle service for towns along the Raritan Valley line,” he added.
Last month, Democratic Congressman William Pascrell of the Eighth District announced that the federal government had set aside $3.5 million for towns along the Morristown, Gladstone, Boonton, Main and
Bergen lines, and the Montclair branch, to set up jitney service.
Other grants have already been handed out in towns such as Berkeley Heights, Maplewood and Springfield.
NJ Transit is currently reviewing jitney service with an eye towards offering such programs to all towns served by their trains.
However, Mayor Jardim said, “We, as members of the Raritan Valley Line Coalition, should not wait until such a review comes, but rather should act now as the ‘Year of the Raritan Valley Line’ quickly draws to a close.”
An important aspect of local jitney service will be providing more transportation options to senior citizens, according to Mayor Jardim.
In Westfield, transportation was reported by agencies serving seniors as the number one concern among elder citizens, the Mayor maintained.
Jitney service, based on the “Maplewood” model (a shuttle system that serves commuters during rush hour and seniors at other times) can be run at little cost, he concluded.
WESTFIELD — Democratic candidate Joe Stoner, who is challenging veteran Councilman James J. Gruba to represent the Second Ward, has initiated his campaign for the Westfield Town Council. Elections will be held on Tuesday, November 3.
Mr. Stoner, a 20-year town resident, described his platform as based on “accessibility, sensitivity to the concerns of ward residents, longterm vision and proactive service to meet those concerns.”
The candidate began his campaign with a series of neighborhood visits over the course of the summer. He said he intends to continue that initiative throughout the fall. He stated that, if elected, he will maintain this practice and encouraged Second Ward residents to communicate with him directly about their concerns.
Mr. Stoner invited all ward residents to share their concerns by calling him at (908) 232-8334, through e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by regular mail to his home at 849 Winyah Avenue.
Among the most prominent issues he has identified are the condition of town roads, public safety, parking and the commercial viability of the downtown business district.
Mr. Stoner said he believes all of these merit greater attention from the Town Council.
The candidate has served as State Director of Common Cause, and has also been active in church, professional and service boards at local, regional and national levels.
A chemical engineer by profession, Mr. Stoner is a sales engineer in the analytical instrument industry.
Campaign News Continued On