BRIDGEWATER, NJ - He is committed to Bridgewater and already serving the township on the Green Knoll Rescue Squad — and now resident Timothy Ring is looking to serve the township on council.
Ring is running on the Republican ticket for one of two open spots on the township council.
A lifelong Bridgewater resident, Ring grew up in Martinsville and graduated from Bridgewater-Raritan Regional High School East in 1987. From there, he studied business management at Allentown College of St. Francis de Sales.
Now, Ring works in safety and security for SBM Site Services of California, supporting their Merck portfolio.
In his senior year of high school, Ring joined the Martinsville Rescue Squad, where he is still a life member. Over the years, he has served as president and chief, and, as chief, directed the squad’s response to the 9/11 terror attacks in 2001.
After he married his wife, Terri, Ring and his family moved to the Green Knoll section of town and he joined the rescue squad there, where he now serves as deputy chief.
Ring is also a communicant of the Church of the Blessed Sacrament in Martinsville, and a member of the 200 Club of Somerset County and BPOE Elks.
“I have lived in town my entire life,” he said. “I am actively involved in serving my community.”
As a lifelong resident, Ring said, he has seen the growth of Bridgewater firsthand.
“We have limited space left for new development, and it is critical that the township’s master plan represents that,” he said. “For those not familiar with the master plan, it is what defines the zoning throughout the township and what type of buildings are allowed to be built where.”
Ring said that although they cannot completely eliminate development, they do need to make sure that all new development is for the betterment of Bridgewater, while also being built in a way that is consistent with the local neighborhood.
“The impact to our roads, the school system and burden on township services have to be considered,” he said. “In order to accomplish this, we need to make sure that our master plan is updated to reflect the limited space left for development within Bridgewater.”
The planning board, solely appointed by the mayor, and the board of adjustment, appointed by the township council, review all applications to make sure they are consistent with the intent of the master plan.
“During a recent planning board meeting I attended, there was some discussion about the type of material that would be used on the exterior of a proposed hotel,” Ring said. “A member of the planning board was concerned that the material was not appropriate for Bridgewater. The developer responded that the hotel company required the use of those materials. I find this unacceptable.”
Ring said there is no shortage of hotel companies looking to develop in Bridgewater.
“Developers looking to build in Bridgewater should not be dictating to us how they build,” he said. “We must tell them the requirements to build in Bridgewater and if those requirements do not align with their business plan, then they will have to look for alternative locations to build in another town.”
On the topic of debt reduction, Ring said the town needs to continue to look for shared services opportunities, and make sure that government services are provided in the most cost effective manner possible.
“We must also change the way spending plans are prepared,” he said.
Each year, Ring said, the town prepares a budget for that year.
“There is little, if any, review for three to five years out for a financial forecast,” he said. “When the administration presents a budget to the council, it should include projections of capital purchases over the next three to five years, along with forecasts about number of employees who may retire and number of employees who the town may have to hire.”
Ring said there should be a schedule of which roads are slotted for re-pavement each year, and they must look at debt payments each year.
“The township should carefully review the costs of borrowing versus paying cash for capital purchases and road improvements,” he said. “With a long term plan to pay down debt and properly forecast out expenses, we should be able to ensure a stable tax rate.”
In terms of roadwork, Ring said, it seems that the current process of selecting roads each year to be repaved is not working.
“If elected to council, I am committed to working with the administration in developing and implementing a long term road evaluation and improvement plan,” he said. “The town should have an inventory of all township owned roads, which are evaluated and graded annually.”
That, Ring said, would allow the town to plan and budget for the roads several years out.
Ring raised two daughters in town, and has met many residents over the years, which he said makes him excited to run for council.
“Bridgewater Township is a great township,” he said. “While not a small town, Bridgewater has a small-town feel. I grew up here, raised my two daughters here, I know where Bridgewater came from.”
“I look forward to helping make sure Bridgewater Township continues to be a great town in which to live and raise a family,” he added.