November 5, 2013 at 10:56 PM
FANWOOD/SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ – Democratic Council Candidates Kathy Mitchell and Tom Kranz won their seats in Fanwood and Republican Candidate Llewellyn Jones won the Council seat in Scotch Plains.
“We really had a strong team and it showed in the results,” said Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr. “We now have an all Democratic Council and we are looking forward to getting things done. Kathy is starting an amazing 16th year on the Council and Tom will bring a fresh perspective.”
Fanwood Democrats gathered at the soon to be opened Chippery on South Avenue to celebrate and to sample Chef Brian Walker’s fish and chips.
The Scotch Plains Republicans gathered at the Rescue Squad on Bartle Avenue to celebrate Llewellyn Jones’ win over Lou Beckerman.
“I think that Llewellyn made the case of why we needed a new direction for Scotch Plains and I think the people in town understand the issues a lot better because of his campaign and we have a lot to accomplish in the coming year,” said Al Smith, Chairman of the Scotch Plains Republican Party.
“I’m excited and I’m looking forward to getting down to work right away. I think we have a number of big challenges,” said Llewellyn Jones. “I think the biggest issue facing us will be next year’s budget. Other important priorities will be hiring of service providers at the beginning of the year, looking at having discussions with people regarding the SID. We ran a very issues based campaign – we talked about the cuts to the Library, we talked about the sewer utility, we talked about the police merger.”
Lou Beckerman thanked everyone who had supported his campaign, receiving a rousing cheer when he proclaimed that the Democrats were not stopping now.
Beckerman released the following statement: “It was a very difficult year for all Democrats running against the line that was led by Chris Christie. I am very proud of the support that I received in the campaign from my friends and neighbors. I believe that the prospects for the police merger with our neighbors in Fanwood may now be in jeopardy. Both Councilman Vastine and Councilman Elect Jones are clearly against the concept of a Joint Meeting. Over eighteen months ago, our neighbors in Fanwood made it very clear that the only form of a merged Police Department that was acceptable to them was a Joint Meeting. We have been negotiating with Fanwood in good faith on that basis. We could be losing our opportunity for enhanced police service at a lower cost which will have a future impact on the tax payers. I wish Mr. Jones well.”