Highlands and Atlantic Highlands Move Forward After Upsets

first_imgBy Muriel J. SmithWith surprise election results in both Atlantic Highlands and Highlands last week, administrators in both communities are confident the newcomers will work well with their governing bodies and continue to represent the people they have been elected to serve as the outgoing council members have always done.Atlantic Highlands Administrator Adam Hubeny said Randi LeGrice, who defeated incumbent Councilman Jack Archibald in his bid for mayor, has already been in borough hall to become acclimated to her new position and to learn what appointments must be made when the governing body reorganizes in January. LeGrice also told The Two River Times she is eager to assume the office next year and is looking for ward to working with the borough council. She sets encouraging new businesses to come to some of the vacant stores along First Avenue as one of her priorities after she assumes office.Although defeated in his mayoral bid, Archibald remains a member of the council until 2017. Lou Fligor, whom Archibald defeated in the GOP primary in June, also remains a member of council until 2017. The pair, along with Peter Doyle and Jake Hoffman make up the GOP majority on council, with the newly elected Democrats Charles ‘Chuck’ Lero and Councilman Roy Dellosso the Democrats. Under the borough’s form of government, the mayor only votes to break a tie. Incumbent Robert Sutton, whose term runs out the end of this year, did not seek re-election.Hubeny said in spite of the contentious atmosphere during the pre-election campaigning, “all of the candidates will always do what they feel has to be done for the borough once they are elected. They will do right for the community for certain. I am confident there will be a smooth transition.” The administrator pointed out that “it’s the mayor and council who do the work here; and there is always a learning curve when we have reorganization. However, I’ve been administrator for 11 years, and Dwayne Harris has been borough clerk for 12 years, and we, as all the borough staff, are always here to help.” LeGrice agreed, praising the borough staff for their efficiency and their dedication to the borough.The mayor-elect said she believes the door-to-door campaigning she and the council candidates did attribute to their victory, saying they knocked on 5,000 doors and introduced themselves as well as having the opportunity to hear from the residents what they want and what is important for them to see in the borough. She conceded that the last minute letter sent by GOP mayor Fred Rast urging residents to vote for the Democratic candidates also helped the Democratic victory but thought listening to the people in their homes was the strongest reason for the victories.In Highlands, Borough Administrator Tim Hill said he too is confident of a smooth transition when incumbents Tara Ryan-Killeen and Kevin Redmond step down in January, and newcomers Claudette D’Arrigo and Carolyn Broullon join Mayor Frank Nolan and council members Doug Card and Rebecca Kane. The borough is governed under the Faulkner Act for non-partisan government that formerly held their elections in May but now are held in November. All three incumbents are registered Democrats as is Broullon; D’Arrigo is a registered Independent for other than municipal elections.Although the council-elect women did not run together as a team, they both indicated they share similar visions and ideas for the borough and improving code enforcement and the appearance of the borough are high priorities. D’Arrigo has attended every council meeting except 11 over the past seven years and is also in the forefront in an ongoing battle with FEMA over Super Storm Sandy funds.last_img

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