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I would like to take a few minutes to make some opening comments. First, I would like to thank Bob Petrelli for serving on the Township Committee for the past six years. He will be sadly missed and we will be seeking a replacement soon. Second, I would also like to thank the residents of Branchburg for re-electing me; this will be my eighth term on the Township Committee. Finally, thanks to the Township Committee for their support and nomination to the Mayor for Branchburg Township in 2020.

In Branchburg, the Mayor’s position has traditionally rotated each year amongst the Township Committee Members. You should think of the Mayor as the leader of a governing team. As a team, the Township Committee operates together on your behalf. All of the Township Committee members are stewards for our town who work to preserve and protect Branchburg to make our town a great place to live. Additionally, we try to insulate, as best we can, any divisive partisan politics that are pervasive at the State and Federal level. The residents of Branchburg can continue to expect a non-partisan approach to local government service from your Township Committee Team.

2020 marks the beginning of a new decade. This next decade will likely bring about more change than we have seen in any decade in our lifetime. As such, the challenges of providing stewardship to the residents of Branchburg will be difficult. I believe the biggest challenge we face are all of the affordable housing plans being put to us by the courts. These planned changes could drive a significant amount of residential development and population changes in our town. There is a potential for this to strain our tax base, school system, traffic patterns, and the rural-suburban character of our town.

However, in the end, I believe market forces will likely limit much of the planned development and we will experience slower growth than what is being discussed within the courts. As we navigate this and other key issues, the Township Committee will continue to provide the same stewardship and transparency that has served our town well over these many years.

Ultimately, it is our goal to turn any changes into positive shifts for Branchburg and our community. I look forward to 2020 and to leading our Branchburg Township Committee team in this year of change.

 Thank you and God bless our wonderful town.