In a joint statement, Councilwoman Debra Coen of Hoyt Street and Board of Health President Eric Range of Belleau Avenue highlight their campaign priorities for the 2021 Borough Council campaign in advance of the contested primary on June 8th.  Coen is running for reelection in 2021, and Range is running for his first term on the council.

Coen and Range are running as a team.  They both have deep experience volunteering in roles that make an impact on our community, and they believe that this gives them keen insights into the needs and priorities of residents and local businesses.  They have been endorsed by the Madison Democratic Committee and will appear together on the Morris County Democratic Committee, Inc. line on the June 8th Democratic Primary ballot.

Candidate Coen and Range reflected: “COVID-19 has made this past year like none other. Now with the arrival of spring, we feel the same positivity that can be seen around Madison.  Many Madison residents have been vaccinated, the Community Pool will be open shortly, and our downtown is coming alive again.  We were also happy to learn that as of May 19, all current percentage capacity limits for indoor and outdoor businesses will be lifted by the state.”

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Coen pointed to the borough’s quick response last year to support residents and businesses with the COVID-19 Toolkit, mental health resources, and improved communications to keep residents informed. “One of our objectives now is to create attractive new ‘meeting places’ downtown that will encourage community engagement and gathering plus attract new visitors who support local businesses,” she said. 

As a former Downtown Development Committee (DDC) chair, Range believes that a vibrant and thriving downtown is the ‘heartbeat’ of our community.  Range stated, “Vital Madison businesses must be supported as they continue to get back on their feet.  If elected, Deb and I will prioritize enhanced support to existing and new Madison businesses, both financially and through policy. We want the borough to continue to invest in our open spaces and trails and our arts and cultural resources, all of which attract new visitors to Madison and improve the quality of life for our residents.”  

“The Team of Coen and Range also pledge to proactively identify ‘at risk’ structures and make smart investments that treat our historic properties as the valuable community assets they are,” Coen stated: “We want to honor and protect Madison’s past. Our historical building assets help define the character of Madison.  Together, Eric and I will focus on preservation incentives instead of reactive efforts, which have happened, not always successfully, in the past.” 

The candidates fully understand that managing Madison’s budget to meet our needs now and for the future has never been more complex. The candidates stated: “With uncertain revenues and expenses from COVID-19 impacts, a balance must be struck between minimizing tax increases and maintaining our strong financial footing.  We support the 2021 borough budget.  Together, we will continue to explore new shared services agreement opportunities between our schools, technology, and health services that lower costs and improve the quality of services that Madison residents have come to expect.”

“Sustainability and the protection of our environment are important to both of us,” added Range.  “Promoting clean energy, expanding our electric vehicle fleet, adding additional new charging stations in town and encouraging green building practices in new borough projects will all be priorities of ours.”

In conclusion, the candidates stated: “Together, we will bring our decades of dedication, knowledge, and experience to borough government. There is much good work that needs to be done, as we all work as a community to move forward from the devastation of COVID-19.  We will work tirelessly to listen to the needs of the Madison community and ensure that Madison continues to remain the #1 best place to live in New Jersey. We hope that all Madison Democrats will come out on June 8th and vote for our team.”

For more information on voting in the June 8th primary, please visit www.madisonnjdems.com/vote.  Voters can learn more about Eric and Deb on the website, or email coenrange@gmail.com for any questions.