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Introducing the Candidates for Borough Council


As we gear-up for the November 3rd Council Elections, here's a re-run of a story originally posted on May 13, 2008.  It introduces the candidates.  Look for weekly features on the upcoming election.


Metuchen is gearing-up for the next Borough Council race.  The terms of two council members will expire at the end of the year - Richard Weber and Richard Dyas.  Mr. Weber is seeking re-election and two additional worthy residents have committed their time and service to our town and have joined him in the race:  Democratic candidate Sheri-Rose Rubin and Republican candidate Joseph Vassallo. Councilman Dyas is not seeking re-election.


This first post is to introduce you to the candidates.  Each has provided some info on themselves as well as an overview of what they might bring to office. 


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What's-up with those underage drinking lawn signs??  You've seen them sprouting on lawns all over town.  The signs, with their bars and strong anti-drinking messages, are there to curb the illicit and dangerous drinking that can accompany prom-and-grad-time celebrations.


There has been quite a bit of chatter about the signs and according to Councilman Manley, "They are doing EXACTLY what we hoped they would do.  They've got people talking and that's a good thing."  Justin also provided some background information:


The signs are an effort by the Metuchen Municipal Alliance / Youth Service Board. The Alliance is an entity of the Borough Government that is tasked with handling alcohol and drug related matters within Metuchen.  It is funded by grants from the State managed by the County and a 25% match that the town is responsible for doing each year.  Some towns contribute their 25% from tax dollars but in Metuchen, our entire matching contribution is done through fund raisers. The committee is chaired by Judi Cheung, the Substance Abuse Counselor (SAC) from MHS and Edgar.  I am the Council liaison and Eileen Frowenfeld is the Board of Education representative. There is also a Metuchen police representative and a host of citizen volunteers.

Borough Hall Gallery Exhibits Discussed at Council Meeting


Monday night's Borough Council meeting discussed a varied group of issues related to town but the most spirited of the talks was elicited by the proposal of Linda Vonderschmidt-LaStella of Earthsongs Studio, a Metuchen fine artist, who, with the help of the Cultural Arts Commission, is devising a revolving gallery of town-created art to be put into the downstairs gallery at Borough Hall (the Rotunda) in the coming months. The gallery would encompass 12 pieces of art from a single artist or from individual members of a group to provide a changing exhibit that would be open to public viewing.

The Mayor voiced fears about the security of the pieces as well as the physical hanging implements that would hold the artworks in place. Councilman Dyas had many questions about the nature of the exhibits, what would be considered appropriate and what subject matters would not. Ms. Vonderschmidt-LaStella responded to his concerns by allowing that nudity, violent subject matter and artwork that could not fit into the alloted space would not be considered. Councilman Morrison and Councilman Weber were the most vocal of the supporters, but the entire Council determined that a resolution spelling out the numerous restrictions and guidelines for the works of art should be devised as soon as possible, allowing, among other things, for the Borough Administrator, William Boerth, to have some say in the creation of the gallery and for Council Attorney Frizell to have legal say in the operation of said gallery.

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