NUTLEY, NJ - With the township still healing from the recent Board of Education election, activity is picking up for the May 12 Board of Commissioners election. 

The Township of Nutley is governed by a board of commissioners, each overseeing one of the communities five departments. The person with the most votes in the election is declared "mayor," but unlike other communities where a great deal of power rests with the mayor, the power in Nutley is spread across the commissioners. Four of Nutley's five commissioners, Mayor Dr. Joseph P. Scarpelli, Commissioner Mauro Tucci, Commissioner Tom Evans, and Commissioner Alphonse Petracco have expressed their interested in running, and have started fundraising. Commissioner Steve Rogers has stated that he has no intention to run again. Chris Cullari was the fifth candidate to enter the race.

Nutley business owner Sam Fleitell is the sixth candidate to enter the race.

Sign Up for Nutley Newsletter
Our newsletter delivers the local news that you can trust.

Known to many in the community as Nutley Thriving Survivors' founder Michele Fleitell's "better half," Sam has been active in the community for decades. He recently became a board member at the Nutley Educational Foundation. 

The Fleitells own Trio Jewelers on Franklin Ave. across from the High School, As we were discussing his goals for the campaign, countless customers walked in to pick up or drop off orders and repairs. Fleitell took the time to listen to each one, some had questions about who won the BOE race, others just wanted to compliment the staff on helping change a watch battery. 

The focus of the conversation centered on handling the issues that affect residents the most, the things, big and small that result in complaints, and a central location. Fleitell stated that Nutley needs a place where residents have their concerns address, and serve the residents better. Essentially, one of his ideas is a one stop office for complaints and concerns. Fleitell is also interested in setting up a committee to determine if residents would like to explore setting up a different form of government to serve the community better. One of the ideas he would entertain is the possibility of a town manager. 

He was quick to state, and repeated a few times during the conversation that "We (he and Michele) love Nutley, but it can be better than what it is."

Fleitell welcomes support from the community. Interested parties can drop into Trio Jewelers or call the store at 973-667-8628. Trio is located at 301 Franklin Ave. Nutley. 

The formal documents to declare candidacy will be available after the first of the year.


Related Article: TAPinto Continues to Expand Vital Local Election Coverage in 2019


Since 2016,  has been the only locally owned news organization serving the Township of Nutley, and is a member of the New Jersey Press Association. The Nutley Board of Commissioners made the township's 'Official Electronic News Source' starting in 2019. 

Sign up for our FREE daily eNews. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter @TAPintoNutley  and Instagram @TAPintoNutley  Download the TAPinto App!   Click here for Android.  Click here for iOS.

Got a news tip? email us at