Princeton Township Democrats continue to search for someone to fill the seat on Committee that opened when Bill Hearon abruptly announced his resignation last week. He had been in the final year of his freshman term and up for re-election; his resignation will take effect March 31.
In the meantime, Township Democrats are gearing up to find a successor who would not only carry out the remainder of Mr. Hearon's current term, set to expire December 31, but who would be willing to run for a three-year term in this year's November elections.
For Township Committee, only Mr. Hearon's seat is vacant, and no challengers have stepped forward, but as has been the case in past years, February and March tend to be the months when candidates begin to explore a run at local government.
Mr. Hearon cited the success of a budding payment services business he runs with his wife, Joan Bartyl, as a factor that has increasingly taken away from his time on the governing body, he told Town Topics last week.
Dan Preston, Princeton Township Democratic Committee (PTDC) municipal chair would not disclose potential candidates, but did say that the aim was to get someone appointed now who would be comfortable taking on a full term beginning in 2007. That formula has worked successfully in the Borough, where Council members David Goldfarb, Wendy Benchley, Andrew Koontz, and Barbara Trelstad were all initially appointed to their seats. With the exception of Ms. Trelstad, who has not yet run in an election, those appointees have since been re-elected.
Mr. Preston said that since it is the time of year when the political parties typically choose candidates for the coming elections, there is now the two-pronged choice presented to the PTDC, and eventually Township Committee, to select someone immediately, and preferably one who wishes to serve at least through December 31, 2009.
"In theory people could step forward to fill out Bill's remaining term, or to run for a full term in the fall" Mr. Preston said. "My guess is that most folks will step forward for both."
According to Mr. Preston, the deadline for candidates to notify the PTDC of interest in either or both terms is March 1. They can do so by calling (609) 252-0011. That deadline will assure interested individuals an appearance at the Princeton Community Democratic Organization's March 19 "Local Candidates Night" at the Suzanne Patterson Center. Those interested in running need to submit a curriculum vitae and a letter of intent. Candidates also must have been registered Democrats and Township residents for at least one continuous year.
On March 20 at a closed meeting, the PTDC will decide on three names to submit to Township Committee to fill Mr. Hearon's term. The PTDC will also vote on an endorsement for the June 6 primary election.
Township Committee is expected to choose Mr. Hearon's replacement at its March 27 session.
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