Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXIV, No. 44
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
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Borough, Township Dems Prevail; Holt Wins

Dilshanie Perera

The Democratic candidates running for the two available seats on Borough Council and Township Committee, respectively, pulled ahead of their Republican counterparts on Tuesday.

Democrat and long-time member of Council Roger Martindell garnered 1,513 votes in the Borough while newcomer to the local political scene Jo Butler received 1,457 votes. Borough Republicans Roland Foster Miller and Peter Marks accrued 627 and 608 votes, respectively.

In the Township, incumbents Liz Lempert and Lance Liverman prevailed over Douglas Miles and Stuart Duncan for the Committee seats. The Democrats gained 3,530 and 3,444 ballots respectively, while the Republicans received votes of 1,827 and 1,773.

Democratic incumbent Rush Holt will serve another two-year term in the House of Representatives for New Jersey’s 12th District, coming in ahead of Republican challenger Scott Sipprelle in the polls. Local results placed Mr. Holt ahead of Mr. Sipprelle in the Township, with 3,956 votes to 1,562. In the Borough, Mr. Holt received 1,737 votes to Mr. Sipprelle’s 494.

“It’s always tough to lose, but Scott ran a great campaign and he is a tremendous candidate,” said consultant Chris Russell, who worked on Mr. Sipprelle’s campaign for Congress.

The local winners acknowledged the challenges ahead, but were pleased by the results, thanking their running mates and other Democrats gathered at the Nassau Inn to tally and await the numbers on Tuesday night.

“The win feels terrific,” acknowledged Mr. Liverman. “We have run a factual and honest campaign,” he said, referring to himself and Ms. Lempert.

Mr. Liverman called revaluation the next major source of scrutiny for the Township. “We are going to try to do what we can,” he said, adding that he and Ms. Lempert are both on the revaluation commission in the Township, which will be looking at the numbers and the process more closely with the goal of alleviating burdens on the taxpayer where possible.

“We have to stay focused and keep on doing what we’ve been doing,” Mr. Liverman said. Key items on that agenda include lowering the Township budget, reducing costs wherever possible, and working with the unions associated with the municipality to maximize cost savings while providing necessary benefits.

“We do very well with fiscal management,” Mr. Liverman said.

The events leading up to the election were a “perfect storm” in Mr. Liverman’s opinion, with aftershocks from the economy’s collapse still being felt, the revaluation affecting residents, and funding for the community pool becoming an issue of concern.

On the Borough’s side, Ms. Butler also emphasized the reassessment’s affect on the municipality as being a key issue of concern.

In the upcoming months before being sworn in, she said, “We’re going to continue looking at the revaluation, the [Citizens Financial Advocacy] Taskforce, and also the consolidation committee.”

Characterizing the next moves the Borough must make as a “long process,” Ms. Butler noted that the “revaluation will have a dramatic impact on our community.”

In County election news, Democrat Paula Sollami-Covello received 3,672 votes in the Township and 1,583 votes in the Borough for the position of Mercer County Clerk, while her opponent Gino A. Melone garnered 1,662 and 546, respectively.

The Democrats also pulled ahead in both municipalities regarding the Mercer County Chosen Freeholders, with Anthony P. Carabelli and Andrew Koontz receiving 3,573 and 3,582 votes in the Township and 1,551 and 1,547 votes in the Borough, beating challengers Russell Wojtenko, Jr. and James V. Castelize III, who got 1,682 each in the Township and 553 and 534 votes in the Borough, respectively.

In the Borough, a total of 34 percent of registered voters cast their votes.

All election results reported here are unofficial.

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