Rockaway Township Republicans will meet tonight behind closed doors to pick a nominee for mayor to run in a November special election to fill a fourteen-month unexpired term.
The vote will be to replace Mayor Michael Dachisen, who died on August 15.
The leading candidate, according to sources who spoke on the condition of anonymity, is Councilman Michael Puzio.
Puzio has endorsed Democrat Mikie Sherrill for Congress in New Jersey’s 11th district. Sources say that if Puzio becomes the nominee, Democrats will not run anyone against him. If Puzio receives party backing, he would be running on a ticket with Assemblyman Jay Webber, Sherrill’s Republican opponent.
Republican Municipal Chairman Dan Anello did not return a 12:50 PM call seeking comment. Democratic Municipal Chairman Douglas Romaine did not return a 12:55 PM call seeking comment.
The Township Council is set to meet on Thursday evening to name an interim mayor, who would serve until the November general election results are certified. The council may either pick from a list of three names submitted by the party – Paul Minenna, Adam Salberg and Puzio – or pick nobody. If that happens, the local party organization may meet again to name the new mayor.
According to public records, Salberg received a 60-day suspension and a $2,500 fine from his financial services job for forging a customer’s signature. The fine is still outstanding, and he is barred from employment in the financial services industry until the fine, due to the National Association of Security Dealers, is paid.