MADISON – In a prepared statement, Councilwoman Maureen Byrne of Albright Circle, looks back at her first term on the Madison Borough Council, her accomplishments and what will be her focus if elected to a second term.  Byrne is running for re-election in 2019 with running mates Mayor Bob Conley of Brittan Street and Madison Planning Board member Rachel Ehrlich of Kings Rd.

Councilwoman Byrne stated, “People in Madison put down deep roots.  My husband Tom and I moved here with our first son and another on the way back in 1992.  For many of us, T-Ball was a right of passage.  Youth sports in general were wonderful places to encounter new and old friends.  The Madison Community Pool was where we first gave our children a little freedom – knowing that there were many eyes watching over the pool. 

How do we maintain this quality of life, make it accessible to the next generation, and continue to welcome new residents?  What can we do to make it welcoming to all?  The answer is: we continue what we’ve been doing and strive to do even better.”

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 “I am proud of the work I’ve done for Madison since I was elected to the Borough Council,” Byrne continued.  “And as I look ahead, I am focused on these areas: keeping Madison as wonderful for the next person that moves in as it was for my family, managing our complex budget with as much care as we manage our own personal budgets, and addressing the quality of life issues that impact us all such as pedestrian safety, parking, and open spaces.

Participating in the crafting the budget for the town has been an incredible opportunity for me to understand the governing of Madison on a micro/macro level.  There are so many things that we’ve become accustomed to – garbage removal, recycling, a wonderful library, dedicated, professional police and fire departments, a department of public works that maintains our roads, sewers, park lands and recreation facilities and our electric and water utility departments that keep the power coming and the water running.”

Byrne observed that “In the not too distant past, the borough faced leaner times.  We saw cuts in the number of hours the library was open, reduced trash collections and capital improvements, like road reconstruction, upgrading utilities, and improving the sewer infrastructure were put off because of a lack of funding.

Fast forward to 2019, and the picture is very different.   As a result of the Strategic Planning Initiative, convened by my running mate, Mayor Bob Conley, the borough now has a roadmap and action plan that have allowed us to amortize the cost of large capital projects and purchases on a pay-as-you-go basis, while maintaining the services and personnel that we count on to provide them. 

In 2019, as a result of a well informed and discussed budget process, tax increases for the borough were held at 0%, and the electric utility dividend, which is payable to our users as a rate reduction, was increased to $2 million.  Now we are talking about how to manage the surplus in the budget! 

What else are we talking about?  Parking, affordable housing, acquisition of more turf fields, shared services, protecting our environment, to name a few.  On all of these issues we have a positive story to tell. 

I have learned a tremendous amount over the last three years, and I’m proud of my ability to work with all my colleagues on the council.  I believe that I have made a real difference as the Council’s Community Affairs liaison and now as Public Works liaison.”

Madison works as well as it does by involving volunteers – elected and not – in all its areas,” noted Councilwoman Byrne.   “I’ve had the opportunity to work directly for Madison, its families, children, and older adults over the past 27 years.  I have served as Chair of the Friends of the Madison Public Library and as a member of the Downtown Development Commission.  I have been a Co-chair of the “Taste of Madison” event and am a long-time member of Madison’s Thursday Morning Club.  If re-elected, I promise to continue advocating for all of Madison, without labeling or compromise, because that is who I am and that is what Madison deserves in its representatives.”

Maureen Byrne received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Economics from Goucher College, where she was valedictorian of her class. Prior to moving to Madison, she was an Assistant Vice President, Finance for Paine Webber, where she structured real estate and leasing deals for corporate and individual customers. She also served two years as Development Director and Director of Education for the Blue Ridge region of the American Cancer Society.

Councilwoman Byrne concluded, “We have accomplished a lot for Madison families during my first term.  But much still needs to be done, and I believe that I can continue to make a positive difference in borough government. I am therefore asking all Madison voters to support me and my running mates, Mayor Bob Conley and Madison Planning Board member Rachel Ehrlich, on Election Day, November 5th.

Please also visit our website at https://madisonnjdems.com for more information on the team of Conley, Byrne, and Ehrlich and follow us on Facebook, @MadisonNJDemCommittee for the latest information on how we will continue to make Madison a great place to live.”