Middlesex County Freeholder Candidates – 2017 | Personal Statements

Alphabetical Order

Roger Daily (R)
I would like to put an end to one party control of Middlesex County Board of Freeholders. For the past 21 years this one party control has resulted in continuous tax increases and wasteful spending. One good example is the Middlesex County Business administrator John Pulomena who is being paid $231,232.00 per year. He is the highest paid county administrator in the state. We need to end patronage payments to former freeholders like John Pulomena but it will only end if Republicans are elected to the Middlesex County Board of Freeholders.

Mina Kolta (R)
All my life I have served my community. I believe with my technological and business experience I can serve the county of Middlesex. There is very little transparency in Middlesex County. I believe we can utilize technology to not only provide better services but allow more transparency. As for taxes in the county I would audit everything from budgets to contracts and cut all the wasteful spending I can cut without cutting services to people in the county. Finally, safety would be my top priority. People should feel safe in our beautiful county and should not be put in danger by made-up policies of the Board of Freeholders.

Priti Pandya-Patel (R)

I would like to use my knowledge, education, and experience in making a difference and developing programs in preventative healthcare utilization for all Middlesex county residents, to be more efficient as well as merge programs to reduce overall county property taxes.

Charles Tomaro (D*)

2017 Budget Adopted: On March 2, 2017, the Middlesex County Board of Chosen Freeholders adopted the 2017 Middlesex County Operating Budget. The $458.4 million gross operating budget reflects the Board of Chosen Freeholders’ focus on enhancing quality programs and services that are affordable to our taxpayers and on increasing operational efficiencies.

The 2017 budget represents a less than 1 cent increase in the tax rate to taxpayers. That amounts to an increase of about $20 per household per year.

To offset State and Federal funding cuts to services like MCAT and mental health care, and costs from the State’s Bail Reform and a Speedy Trial initiative, the County resolved to increase its portfolio of Shared Services agreements with neighboring counties.

$6.8 million is already being saved regionally by centralizing medical examiner and juvenile detention services

The Medical Examiner regionalization is generating $2.6 million in revenue for Middlesex County from our agreements with Monmouth and Mercer counties.

In the area of juvenile services, Middlesex County is generating $4.4 million from agreements with Somerset, Monmouth and Mercer counties.

The County also is expanding its Shared Service programs for fire inspection services to all of its municipalities.

The County continues to maintain its Triple A bond rating, which it has held for 16 years. This is crucial to its Capital Improvement Master Plan, through which more than $50 million will be invested in 2017 for critical projects, such as road reconstruction, bridge repairs and facilities and technology upgrades, to ensure the safety and wellbeing of Middlesex County residents.

Middlesex County was the first County in the State to adopt its budget for 2017.


• Middlesex Greenway App: In August 2017, Middlesex County launched its newest online application to help residents navigate the Middlesex Greenway and its surrounding areas in Metuchen, Edison, and Woodbridge. Users of this app can locate stores, restaurants, bus stops and more from their mobile device. The app also allows them to report problems, get the latest weather, news and find other updates about the Greenway. The app includes an interactive map and is available to download online, along with a “How to” guide, via the Middlesex County website at www.middlesexcountynj.gov.

• County Branding and Marketing Initiative: The County’s new brand identity and marketing campaign launched in January 2017 to promote awareness of the County’s assets and economic development. The new initiative represents the richness, power and reach of the Middlesex County brand and story, and our key platforms for economic viability and quality of life.

• Arts Initiative and Regional Plan: In 2017, Middlesex County will build on its commitment to the arts and history by implementing the findings of the Arts Initiative and Regional Plan, expected to be complete by March. This assessment is studying the way the County and towns fund and promote the arts and how, as a region, we can increase access to the arts and the tourism and economic development they can drive.

Our rich diversity means unparalleled collaboration between small towns and urban centers, family-owned businesses and large corporations, students and seniors and people of all cultures.

The County created South Central Middlesex County Flood Control Commission, which is working to find solutions to flooding issues that affect the County’s southern towns. The commission also would lobby for state and federal funding to pay for any necessary work. The towns to be part of the commission, all of which lie within a 44-square-mile region along the Manalapan and Matchaponix brooks, are: East Brunswick, Helmetta, Jamesburg, Monroe, Old Bridge, Spotswood and South River.
A $500,000 federal grant was awarded to Middlesex County for a flood plain study. The US Army Corps of Engineers are conducting the study to develop a flood mitigation plan for the member towns of the Commission.

Total Open Space Acquired or in contract to purchase plus Farmland Preserved as of 2016: 12,734 acres
Total Open Space Acquired or in contract to purchase as of October 2017: Over 8,000
2016: Dog Park on the border of Edison and Metuchen. This new recreational facility is the product of a cooperative agreement between the County of Middlesex, the Township of Edison and the Borough of Metuchen. The agreement enabled the County to fund and build the dog park on parkland acquired by Edison Township. Edison Township provided the plans for the site and, along with the Borough of Metuchen, will maintain the dog park for all County residents.

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