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Clinton Mayor Janice Kovach, center left, is sworn in by Gov. Phil Murphy, center right. Photo by Nikita Biryukov for the New Jersey Globe.

Murphy swears in Kovach

Traphagen takes seat on council

By Nikita Biryukov, January 01 2020 4:50 pm

Gov. Phil Murphy swore in Clinton Mayor Janice Kovach Wednesday.

“I’m a proud Democrat, as is Janice, but today is about service,” Murphy said. “It’s about serving our communities and our state, and it’s a day where we acknowledge that it takes both sides of the aisle to get the job done.”

Kovach, a popular Democratic mayor in an often-Republican Hunterdon County, won re-election in November by a two-to-one margin over Republican Martin Pendergast.

Murphy was joined at the ceremony by some of the state’s other top politicians.

Clinton Councilman Ross Traphagen, center, with Senate Minority Leader Tom Kean.

Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-Rocky Hill) attended, as did Senate Minority Leader Tom Kean (R-Westfield), who is mounting a bid for Malinowski’s House seat.

Former Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli, who was the first Republican to announce a 2021 gubernatorial bid, swore in Councilman Ross Traphagen.

Councilman Michael Humphrey, a Democrat, was sworn in by Township Attorney Richard Cushing.

“Jack and Tom, I say it’s an honor to be with you, and Ross and others on one side and Janice and Tom and myself on our side, but it’s beyond that,” Murphy said. “This is about serving our communities, about serving our state, and may god continue to bless us all, the great state of New Jersey and the United States of America.”

Traphagen said he was “excited to begin to get to work for the community that shaped me into who I am.”

“The election season is behind us, and it is now time to put partisan labels aside and work together for the betterment of our town,” Traphagen said.

This story was ypdated on January 3 at 11:44 PM.

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