HOLMDEL/MIDDLETOWN, NJ - Publisher's note: TAPinto Holmdel Colts Neck and Middletown is pleased to share with you the inaugural column from our newest legislative leader. Assemblyman Gerry Scharfenberger!

Welcome to my first column as Assemblyman in Legislative District 13.  I am very excited to be serving in this position and look forward to representing this phenomenal part of Monmouth County.  My time as Mayor and Committeeman of Middletown as well as Monmouth County Freeholder has prepared me well for this new venture and has given me a unique perspective as to how good governments should operate - a perspective I plan on taking with me to Trenton!

While New Jersey’s problems are numerous and painfully apparent, they are not insurmountable.  As such, I have prioritized the issues I want to address in the early stages of my first term.  Clearly, property taxes and taxes in general are the biggest challenges we collectively face.  It is my belief that as long as local education funding is placed mainly on the backs of the suburban property owner, property taxes will remain outrageously high.  An alternative funding system, perhaps through dedicating a portion of existing income or sales taxes will be a more equitable way of sharing the burden for this critical component of our State. 

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Other issues include tort reform to discourage costly frivolous lawsuits, Voter I.D. to ensure the security and validity of our elections, and real economic growth legislation, which would encompass initiatives to finally make New Jersey business friendly to new and existing businesses of all sizes.

Most importantly, my job is to minimize as much as possible, governmental intrusion into the everyday lives of residents.  Personal decisions regarding education, finances, health and general welfare should always rest, first and foremost, with the individual, not the government.

In closing, I want to thank the residents of LD-13 for honoring me with this wonderful opportunity.  Those who know me are aware that I am not interested in trifling exercises like naming a “State Song,” or changing the title of a particular elected office.  Rather, I am laser focused on stopping the mass exodus of residents and businesses to less hostile economic environments with sound legislation that will return New Jersey to its former glory as an affordable, safe and prosperous state to live, work and raise a family.

In future columns I will discuss the issues I am currently working on to keep you, the taxpayers, always informed.  I welcome your feedback and invite you to contact my office with questions or concerns about any issue under the sun.

Gerry

Assemblyman Gerry Scharfenberger, Ph.D.

Legislative District 13

225 Route 35, Suite 202

Red Bank, NJ  07701

(732) 383-7820

asmscharfenberger@njleg.org

District 13(Monmouth)  Aberdeen, Atlantic Highlands, Fair Haven, Hazlet, Highlands, Holmdel, Keansburg, Keyport, Little Silver, Marlboro, Middletown, Monmouth Beach, Oceanport, Rumson, Sea Bright, Union Beach