BERNARDS TWP., NJ - Following Bernards Township's usual practice of promoting from within, the township's longtime public works director, Patrick Monaco, has been appointed to replace Township Administrator Bruce McArthur, who will retire after having held that position in Bernards Township since 1986.

Monaco, too, has been part of the Bernards Township municipal staff for about 30 years. 

Soon after the Township Committee unanimously appointed him to the position last Tuesday at an annual salary of $164,000, Monaco said he began his career at Bernards town hall as a staff engineer. 

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Monaco moved up the ranks to become director of public works. In recent months, he was appointed as assistant township administrator, and he is due to move into the position of township administrator on May 14, 2018, township officials said.

Township Committee members praised both McArthur and Monaco, and referred to the township's success with a practice of promoting from within municipal ranks.

"We will be losing a lot of institutional knowledge [with McArthur's departure]," said Township Committeeman John Malay. "But one of the great things about promoting from within is we have other people with instititional memory," he added.

The township's chief financial officer, Terri Johnson, said the municipality currently is recruiting for Monaco's replacement leading the public works department.

McArthur's official retirement date is June 1, and his last day with the township will be Thursday, May 31, Johnson said. His last scheduled that Township Committee meeting will be on Tuesday, May 29, she said. 

McArthur, who previously held an administrative position in Far Hills Borough, officially has been with the township for 31 and a half years. His current salary is $176,598, according to township figures. He was not present at last week's Township Committee meeting, and Monaco was instead sitting in the township administrator's seat on the dais.

Township Clerk Denise Szabo, who has worked closely with McArthur, said that the longtime township administrator has a "Ph.D in Bernards Township."

"Bruce will be greatly missed," Johnson added later in the week. "He has been a wonderful mentor and friend to so many employees."

Township Committee members also expressed backing for Monaco, referring to his diligence at keeping local roads clear during snow and ice storms, including those to his the township in the last month or so.

Monaco said he thanked officials for their kind words. "Anyone can come and see me anytime," he added. "My goal is just to get things done."