KENILWORTH, NJ – Tuesday, November 5, voters will have their say in the upcoming election for Kenilworth Mayor. The candidates are Linda Karlovitch (D) and Salvatore Candarella (R). TAPinto Kenilworth will run a series of questions for citizens to learn where each individual stands on key issues that impact the township. Each of the candidates will be asked the same set of questions every week and TAPinto will post them every Tuesday until election day.  Here are this week’s questions:

Linda Karlovitch (D)

Will property taxes go up?
The 2% cap limits the rise in property taxes. While only in the proposal stage, the legislative idea of incentives for regional sharing of services may very well be the best pathway to moderating taxes.

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Are you supportive of the Recreation program and how it has grown over the last years?

Recreation programs is something residents desire. Providing programs for all ages adds countless value to our citizens. Overall a strong recreation department can boost property values. Recreation centers provide a safe place for young people to hang out, make new friends and build community unity. Our recreation offerings must keep pace with the changing demographics of our Borough. I am proud of the growth our recreation department has experienced over the past few years and I support expansion, helping to build a stronger, healthier, happier, and safer community.



What are your plans should Merck decide to leave?

I simply don’t believe that at any time in the foreseeable future Merck, after making the investment in the site, will be leaving. We have a good relationship and I envision that continuing. In the business world it’s called outmigration. As someone who started my own business from the ground up, I know the impact of taxes. With the 2 % cap on property taxes we must be mindful that the state policies regarding the environment and transit directly impact on corporate decisions to move.

There are a few empty buildings on the Boulevard. What do you plan to do to attract more businesses to Kenilworth?



Enhancement of the uptown district has been my special concern since taking office. We have started with the beautification efforts which I spearheaded. We have also moved forward with special activities to promote citizens to visit. Recently the council approved the specifications for the reconstruction of the sidewalks in front of our Municipal library. Simply, the more we do to enhance pedestrian traffic the better we do at promoting commerce and growth in the business district. The reality is there is always a changing marketplace. The key to our uptown business area is having mixed use and a vibrant walkable uptown.

Do you plan to expand the public preschool program?

The concept of pre-school has been embraced by educators and bipartisan state legislatures. It is accepted that pre-school is a truly effective method of enhancing the learning experience. These ideas are encouraged for our Board of Education. They are the ones who control programs and budgets for our schools. 

Salvatore Candarella (R)

Will property taxes go up? 

Of Course, have you ever seen taxes go down? Any candidate who answers no, is a liar. I can assure you that any portion of the tax bill that is under the control of mayor and council will be reviewed and scrutinized.  As you are aware mayor and council do not control County Budgets of school budgets.  If you check you tax bill you will see that the Borough collects the least amount of money of the 3 (County, School and Borough).  

Are you supportive of the Recreation program and how it has grown over the last years?

I strongly support the Rec Department and Senior Club, both are vital to making Kenilworth a great place to live, raise a family and grow older together.  The number of children increased years ago when I was on council. I am not sure about the numbers over the last several years.  I have a few ideas, and when elected will sit down with the rec department and Senior Club to increase programs and membership.

What are your plans should Merck decide to leave?

I am a developer. This is what I get paid to do, I know the players, I know who to contact. It will take time to find the right company. With the economy on an upswing, a qualified tenant will surface.

There are a few empty buildings on the Boulevard. What do you plan to do to attract more businesses to Kenilworth?   

I am a commercial realtor, I currently have 70-80 retail tenants, I keep my shopping center full. I will use my skills as a commercial realtor to work with the Landlords and help them get qualified tenants. I am also a residential developer, and will look at certain areas that might be ripe for other types of development. 

Do you plan to expand the public preschool program? 

This is not a mayor and council issue, this falls to the Board of Education. If the Board of Education stays with in their state mandated guild lines, mayor and council can not interfere. Sure, I would like to expanded preschool, but go back to question 1, " will taxes go up".  FYI…The Kenilworth School System get 51% of the real estate taxes collected by the Borough.

 

Do you have a question you would like to ask the candidates? Please submit your responses to tcuppari@tapinto.net.