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Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Lawrence Hamm files nominating petitions at the state Division of Elections in Trenton on March 16, 2020. (Photo: Larry Hamm).

Filing Day in Local Races (Keep checking for updates)

This will be an open day for county and municipal filing news

By David Wildstein, March 27 2023 11:53 am

Toms River:  Councilman Dan Rodrick will seek the Republican nomination for mayor of Toms River, New Jersey’s 8th-largest municipality.  Incumbent Mo Hill and former Republican Club president Geri Ambrosio are already in the race.  “Mayor Hill is destroying Toms River.  Other mayoral candidates like Geri Ambrosio are backed by the same special interests who backed Mo Hill. They all must be stopped.”

Rodrick was elected to the council as a Democrat, switched parties, and ran for mayor in 2019 as a Republican.  Hill, running off-the-line, defeated former Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph Coronato by a 41%-34% margin, with Rodrick receiving 25%.  This time, Hill has the line.

Joining Rodricks’ ticket are at-large council candidates Tom Nivison, Lynn O’Toole, and Craig Coleman.

Mercer: Lisa Richford, the Mercer County GOP chair, will seek the GOP nomination for Mercer County Executive.  She’s stepping up and running herself after no other GOP candidates came forward to challenge the likely Democratic nominee, Assemblyman Dan Benson (D-Hamilton)

Morristown: Bruce Meringolo, a former Long Hill mayor who spent nine years on the school board and six years on the Long Hill council, will seek the Republican nomination for Morristown Town Council.   “I want to bring the experience of having 15 years in local government to Morristown for the benefit of my community,” he said.  The incumbent, Sandi Mayer, defeated Republican Councilwoman Alison Deeb in 2019 by 113 votes, 56%-44%.

Morris County: Carrie O’Brien, a 25-year-old Montville woman, will seek the Democratic nomination for county clerk.  So far, two-term incumbent Ann Grossi is unopposed.

Essex  County: Republicans will run Peter Russo for Surrogate and Joseph Cifelli, Alexandra Campisi, Aristotle Popolizio, and Michael Pocelinko for County Commissioner-at-Large.  The GOP is running Adam Kraemer in District 4 and Kristin Bloschak in District 5.   Essex Republicans have not won an at-large seat since 1971 — former State Sen. Geraldo Del Tufo lost re-election in 1974 —  and surrogate since 1986, when Newark City Councilman Earl Harris won an open seat an Republican (the GOP lost it three years later when Harris died and Thomas P. Giblin flipped the post).  The GOP lost their District 5 seat when former Assemblyman Ralph Caputo defeated incumbent Joseph Scarpelli in 2002, an lost the District 4 seat in 2005  when former At-Large Freeholder Linda Lordi-Cavanaugh scored a 54%-47% win against Republican incumbent Muriel Shore.

Paramus: Councilman Al Nadera, who was appointed to a vacant seat earlier this year, and Mary Ellen Rizzo will run on the Republican slate for township council against Democrats MariaElena Bellinger, an incumbent and the 2021 mayoral candidate, and Nick Matahen, who has lost two school board bids.

Maywood: The Republican candidate for mayor will be Samuel Conoscenti, a councilman.   Former GOP Councilwoman Claire Padovano will run as a Democrat for the council seat now held by Louis Roer.

Oakland: Democratic Mayor Linda Schwager will face a rematch with Eric Kulmala, a GOP councilman.  In 2019, Schwager defeated  Kulmala by 63 votes.

Readington:  Republicans Antoinette Riordan and Andew Saad will seek the Republican nomination for township committee.

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