NEWTON, NJ—The pavilion on the campus of Sussex County Community College was the site of Tapinto Newton and the Town of Newton's candidate debate on Wednesday evenign. Margaret Baldini, John-Paul Couce, Helen LeFrois, along with her running mate were on stage and Ludmilla Mecaj had submitted her statements and responses, as a work commitment kept her from attending.
The event was recorded by TAPinto TV.
Each candidate gave a three-minute opening statement, followed by the answering of six questions, where the candidates were given one minute to answer and allowed a one-minute rebuttal after everyone had responded. TAPinto Newton publisher Jennifer Dericks moderated.
The questions included:
- Considering the fact that 1/3 of the properties in Newton are tax exempt, what would you do to lower taxes? Please be specific.
- One area often discussed as a way to lower taxes is the concept of shared services, typically considered to be between the town and board of education but not limited to those two entities: What shared services would you like the town to consider, either as an operator or receiver?
- What is your opinion of Payment in Lieu of Taxes or PILOT?
- What is the one realistic thing you would like to change in or about the Town of Newton? Why?
- While there are some businesses, even new businesses that are thriving on Spring Street, sadly a large number of storefronts are vacant. What would you do specifically to fill the vacancies on Spring Street?
- Programs offered by a community contribute to the quality of life of its citizens. What recreation or community programs would you like to see the Town of Newton be running?
Once all questions and rebuttals were given, the candidates were allowed a two-minute each closing statement.
The debate was live-streamed on Tapinto Newton’s Facebook page as well as recorded on Tapinto TV and will be available Thursday.