Tuesday, October 14, 2014


Today is the last day to register to vote for the general election in New Jersey on Nov. 4.

If you have not registered, do it today. Find out how HERE.  

Maplewood Town Hall plans to be open until 9 p.m. tonight to allow late registration.

The upcoming election may seem mundane with no presidential or gubernatorial contest and only one U.S. Senate seat up.

But here in Maplewood, it is among the most important in many years.

First, the Township Committee race has Vic De Luca and India Larrier running for re-election and being challenged by Republican Angel "Bob" Perez and Independent candidate Kurt Kiley.

With the Township facing ever growing cost hikes and property tax issues, as well as the pending development of the Maplewood Village post office site and the former PSE&G location --  both of which have seen developers pull out in recent weeks -- the five-person governing body is at its most critical moment in many years. 

Also on the ballot are three open seats on the Board of Education. With incumbents Bill Gaudelli, Andrea Wren-Hardin and Sandra Karriem choosing not to run again, that means three new faces will be on the board. Those running are Donna Smith, Maureen Jones, Elizabeth Baker and Godwin Molokwu.

Such a major shift in power on the board will come at a time when the school district is undergoing major changes. We are searching for a new superintendent, a choice that will not be made until the three new members are seated in January. The district also has new principals at Columbia High School, Maplewood Middle School and Jefferson School.

The district is also dealing with the sexual assault claims against CHS teacher Nicole Dufault, a new claim of racial disparity in student punishment and advancement from the ACLU, and a new round of teacher contract talks next year.

Voters will have access to several candidate forums and meetings prior to Election Day and we have sent questionnaires to all eight candidates.

We urge you to review the facts and the candidates and make sure to cast your ballot on Election Day this year.

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