BARNEGAT/WARETOWN, NJ – Registered voters receive sample ballots well in advance of Election Day. However, that’s not to say that everyone finds time to review them prior to stepping behind the curtain of the voting machine. Although some think it’s only important to cast a ballot in presidential elections, the reality is that local government also impacts lives.

Both Barnegat and Waretown are governed under a Township form of government. In Barnegat, the Township Committee consists of five representatives, who are all elected at-large. In the beginning of every year, the Township Committee votes among themselves to select the Mayor and Deputy Mayor.

Presently, all members of Barnegat’s Township Committee are Republicans. Committeeman Albert Bille’s term is up this year and he is running for reelection. His Democratic opponent is Peg Houle.

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Ocean Township’s Committee has three members, who are also all Republicans. Mayor Ben LoParo faces Democrat Keith Hoffman for his seat, which expires at the end of this year.

Board of Education

Party affiliations are not named in Board of Education elections, although some candidates run as teams.  Barnegat’s two incumbent board members, Scott Sarno and Peter Toth, are running together with Wayne Eslinger. Their campaign slogan is “Keeping Barnegat Great!”

Sean O’Brien, Richard Quelch, and Robert Sawicki are joined on the ticket as “A New Voice.” George Fedorczyk, Jr. and D.D. Verdolino are not affiliated with one another or any of the other teams.

Seven of the eight Board of Education candidates discussed the issues and answered questions at a Candidate’s Forum sponsored by TAPintoBarnegatWaretown.  The presentation was captured on video and is available for review.

In Ocean Township, Daniel Eberenz is an incumbent and the only one running for his seat.

Not Just Local Elections

On a County level, two Republican incumbents John P."Jack" Kelly, and Virginia "Ginny" Haines seek reelection as Ocean County Freeholders. Their opponents are Democrats Jean Czarkowski and David T. Wright, as well as IND-Libertarian Daniel Valentine.

Ocean County incumbent Sheriff Michael G. Mastronardy, a Republican, faces Democrat Gene Davis on the ballot this year.

The New Jersey General Assembly District 9 candidates include incumbents Brian Rumpf and Dianne Gove. Both are Republicans. Sarah Collins and Wayne Lewis are the Democratic state assembly candidates for District 9.

The ballot contains both a state and county public question. The state question concerns approval of a Constitutional Amendment to give certain veterans’ benefits to residents of continuing care retirement communities. The Ocean County question deals with a referendum regarding the Ocean County Natural Lands Trust Fund.

More Information

The polls are open from 6am until 8pm tomorrow. Those who aren’t sure where to vote can use this handy locater tool.

As soon as possible, TAPintoBarnegatWaretown will report local election results. Of course, these are subject to final certification from the Ocean County Board of Elections.