5 Questions with Fanwood Councilwoman Kathy Mitchell

Kathy Mitchell is Fanwood's longest serving Council member. Credits: Brian Horton

As Election Day approaches, TAP into Scotch Plains-Fanwood continues its discussions with the candidates who will be running for office. The "5 Questions with ..." today features responses from Fanwood Council candidate Kathy Mitchell.

1. Why are you running for Town Council again?

I am running for an unprecedented seventh term for Fanwood Council because I love and care about Fanwood.I have been and am committed to a better quality of live for all our residents.I am proud to be part of Mayor Mahr's team and the many of the committed volunteers who have helped realize this goal. I strongly believe in giving back, and this is what I have tried to do.

Sign Up for E-News

2. What do you believe are the most important issues in Fanwood this year?

I feel the most important issues of the past year have been a slightly lower municipal tax rate, since Fanwood took a big hit with the school tax. And of course, curbside recycling, which was a very emotional and at times a contentious issue which necessitated many meetings and time commitment.We have received our blue containers and curbside will begin on 10-6-17.

3. What are your thoughts on the Presidential election?

Growing up in the late “60s and early “70’s was a very bitter and hateful time -- Vietnam War, civil rights unrest, Kent State among a few. The political rhetoric of bigotry and intolerance against women, immigrants, service members, people with disabilities or anybody who is different reminds me of that hateful and divisive time. It saddens me to see that we have, once again, devolved into this much hatred. What does this say about us as a society? A society that we maintain is better than the rest of the world.? Or are we!!

4. What other issues are important?

Other important issues are keeping our municipal tax rate flat without compromising any of our municipal services to which we have become accustomed, an Open Space tax that would be dedicated to Historic Preservation, the care of our Nature Center and recreation. It is estimated it will be about $8-11 per house hold depending on assessed value. This will be on a referendum in November for residents to vote on.

The library will be our next challenge for the upcoming year. Do we expand the Library, as proposed, to meet the expanding needs of our community? These include expanding technology and programming space, and providing a Tween section, which is currently nonexistent.There is so much more a modern library can provide -- do we just do the necessary improvements to become ADA compliant and fix existing conditions?

In these times of terrorism, I feel it is important that we make sure our police, fire, and rescue squads all have the necessary tools, education and equipment to keep us all safe. These are the big challenges and responsibilities for 2017.

5. Tell us about your professional career

I am a retired Registered Nurse. My last jobs were as a Visiting Nurse and an MDS coordinator at Runnells Specialized Hospital. As an MDS coordinator, I was responsible for all the assessments for Medicare reimbursement. This required much organization, medical knowledge and patient/family interaction. If I had to do it all over again, I would still be a nurse in some capacity.

For the past 25 years, I have been the Social Concerns coordinator at IHM church. We have just reinstituted our Sheltering the Homeless program, whereby, homeless families spend 2-3 weeks a year at our parish.We feed our guests, breakfast and dinner and provide lunch.Our guests sleep at IHM and we provide a dry, safe environment for parents and children. We also have a Christmas giving tree which provides almost 1,000 gifts for local charities.Our Thanksgiving food collection provides many meals which also go into the community. My goal for the next year is to establish a “helping hands” program which will help both parishioners and reach into the community to help those in need. is Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s only free daily paper. Sign up for our daily eNews and follow us on Facebook and twitter @SPF_TAP.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Scotch Plains/Fanwood

Small Fire Extinguished at Addams Tavern in Westfield

June 13, 2018

WESTFIELD, NJ — It likely started with a smoldering cigarette, according to Deputy Fire Chief Anthony Tiller.

The fire that started in a flower planter on an outside deck on the second floor of Addams Tavern Wednesday caused a lot of smoke as it spread to the flooring, but only about a three-foot by three-foot area was damaged, Tiller said.

The restaurant at 115 Elm St. is ...

Is Summer Camp the Right Choice for My Child?

Is your child attending camp this summer? Is it their first experience away?  If yes, it can be an experience causing anxiety for you, for the parent and the child. 

This experience can be frightening to your child if it is their first time and it is so important that they do not see your worry or anxiety about leaving home for the first time… especially if it is sleep ...

What Are The Warning Signs of Suicide

The recent passings of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain remind us to take mental illness seriously. 

Many of us feel uncomfortable to ask when someone in distress is suicidal for fear we are putting this thought in their minds. This is not true. It is a myth that asking about suicide increases the risk of suicide. The most common mental illness is depression. Some people are ...


In honor of the Lubavitcher Rebbe's (of righteous memory) 24th  Yahrtzeit (anniversary of his passing) this coming Saturday the 16th.

Excerpts from an address given by Nobel-laureate Elie Wiesel on April 7, 1992, at a congressional dinner held in Washington on the occasion of the Rebbe's 90th birthday.

Some of you are aware of my admiration, not only ...

We Must Address The Unrealistic Affordable Housing Process Now

June 19, 2018

Dear Editor:

I would like to thank all the residents who attended and watched last Tuesday’s Town Hall meeting on over-development and legislative solutions with Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi and I. If you were unable to attend, I encourage you to watch the meeting on SPTV or the Township’s Facebook page at ().

The meeting was a real eye-opener for many of our residents. It ...

Union County Residents Can “Recycle Right” without Plastic Bags

June 19, 2018

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders reminds residents that plastic bags and other excluded items cannot be recycled through their local curbside pick-up programs.

“Union County residents have a good recycling rate compared to other counties in our state, and we want to improve on this record and set a high bar,” said Freeholder Chairman Sergio Granados. “Every ...

Upcoming Events

Fri, June 22, 7:30 PM

Crossroads, Garwood

Benefit Concert

Giving Back

Mon, June 25, 9:00 AM

Terrill Road Baptist Chruch, Scotch Plains

LifeWay’s 2018 Vacation Bible School at Terrill ...

Religions And Spirituality


Mon, July 9, 10:00 AM

Scotch Plains Public Library, Scotch Plains

Join the Summer Jewelry Making Club at the Scotch ...

Arts & Entertainment Health & Wellness Home & Garden