Manalapan voters will go the polls on the Nov. 5 to fill three empty seats on the Manalapan Township Committee. The all-Republican Committee has two candidates vying to reclaim their seats, including Deputy Mayor Jordan Maskowitz and Committeeman Jack McNaboe.
Maskowitz is running for a full three year term and McNaboe is running for a one year term. McNaboe filled Don Holland’s seat, left vacant when he resigned from the Committee in early March. Holland’s term was set to expire in December 2014, which is why a one year term is empty.
Another three year term is available as Committeeman Andrew Lucas’ term was set to expire and he chose not to run for reelection. Before the term expired, however, Lucas chose to resign from his position. On the Republican slate, Maryann Musich is running to fill this seat .
On the Democratic ticket, Ryan Urgo and Ayesha Chaudhary are running for the full terms and David Goldstein is running for the one year term.
All of the candidates were asked to answer the same questions about themselves and their political stances for Manalapan Patch. Patch will be running these candidate profiles up until the election.
JORDAN MASKOWITZ CANDIDATE PROFILEName: Jordan Maskowitz
Age: 54 years old.
Education: Masters Degree in Administrative Science from FDU
Occupation: Retired Lieutenant: New Jersey State Police
1. Please introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about your background and why you should be elected.
I’m proud to call Manalapan my home for the past 21 years. My wife, Teri, and I have been married for 26 years, and chose to raise our three children, Jordan, Amanda and Lauren, in Manalapan. I’m honored to have served the residents of New Jersey during my 25 ½ year career with the New Jersey State Police, where I retired as a Lieutenant in 2008. During the past 21 years, I have volunteered in Manalapan Township in many different capacities. I participated in almost all of our youth sports programs and served on the Manalapan Soccer Club Board. I’m a member and past President of The Yorktowne Club and currently serve as the Chairman of the “Walk With Joe”, a 9/11 annual remembrance walk / fundraiser. I’m currently a member of the Manalapan Township Committee and serve as Deputy Mayor. Since taking office, I’ve served as Manalapan’s Police Commissioner and liaison to our Recreation Department, Community Service Committee, Finance Committee, Western Monmouth Utilities Authority, and our newly formed Teen Leadership Committee. I have a strong record on the Township Committee that includes keeping our taxes virtually flat for the last three years, cut nearly one million dollars from the budget, while maintaining our municipal services. We added over 300 new commuter parking spaces, included additional neighborhood streets to our 2013 paving program and enhanced our already first class recreational facilities and programs. I want to see an affordable Manalapan, not only for our children but, our grandchildren and one that we are all proud to call home.
2. What do you think distinguishes you from other candidates? What do you bring to the table?I believe a candidate’s professional background, experience and knowledge are an added benefit when serving our community. Through my interactions with our residents, while volunteering, supporting our residents during health related events/walks, and the many community sponsored events, I’ve learned, first hand, what issues affect our quality of life and how to best utilize my skills to achieve our goals. My experience and knowledge affords me the ability to work with our employees and residents to keep Manalapan moving forward in a positive direction. The last 3 years I’ve served as our Police Commissioner. My extensive law enforcement knowledge and experience, along with the Chief, has aided us in effectively reducing the crime rate. Crime has dropped by 15%, year to date, and down 40% when comparing September 2012 to 2013. This significant decrease in crime is a direct result of the great work by our Police Officers and you’re Township Committee giving the Police Department the tools it needs to get the job done, some of which include the hiring of 8 new officers and reassigning 25% of desk positions to patrol. My law enforcement background has proven to be an added asset to our success and afforded me the ability to begin working with the Chief immediately, without having a huge learning curve, especially when working with the department with the largest line item in our budget. As a result, I remain committed to maintaining a high level of public safety in our community and will continue to draw on my leadership abilities, as I did during Hurricane Irene and Super Storm Sandy, to help keep Manalapan SAFE.
3. What are the most pressing issues facing the community today? How would you approach and resolve these issues?There are several areas which I believe we can build on our accomplishments and improve the service while ultimately saving additional tax dollars. The last 3 years we had 300 new businesses register with our town. I plan on building on this and continue to work hard to attract new clean ratables which ultimately will keep our taxes lower, new businesses which will also benefit our quality of life. We have already begun this process by a total review of our master plan and the adoption of an ordinance which expands our permitted uses, such as supermarkets on 33, restaurants, data centers, and gyms. I remain committed to our current businesses and creating a community that is business friendly. We are close to initiating the “Shop Manalapan 1st” program which will benefit both our residents and current business owners. As I think about Manalapan’s future, another area I plan to focus on is increasing our recycling efforts. Historically, Manalapan has had a lower rate of recycling compared to other towns our size. Increasing recycling helps the environment and saves taxpayer dollars: the more we recycle, the less we pay to dispose of garbage in our tipping fees. I will work hard with the Environmental Commission and Township Committee members to expand our education and outreach to residents regarding the importance of recycling. I'm proud of what I have accomplished the last 3 years and remain committed to keeping Manalapan affordable, maintaining a high level of public safety, attracting new businesses, maintaining our infrastructure and enhancing our first class recreational facilities and programs.