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Mendham Township Committee

Mendham Township operates under the township form of New Jersey municipal government. The five-member Township Committee is elected directly by the voters at-large in partisan elections to serve three-year terms of office on a staggered basis, with either one or two seats coming up for election each year as part of the November general election in a three-year cycle. At an annual reorganization meeting held on the first Monday after January 1, the newly reconstituted township committee selects one of its members to serve as mayor, and another to serve as deputy mayor.

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  • Candidate picture

    Amalia Duarte
    (Dem)

  • George Williams
    (Rep)

Biographical Information

What do you consider the most important challenge(s) facing your town and how do you plan to address it/them?

What in your personal and/or professional experience prepares you for this office?

What steps would you take to address the economic, social, and personal impact of the COVID-19 crisis and to prepare for future pandemics on the community?

Campaign Email duarte4mendham@gmail.com
Website www.duarte4mendham.com
Facebook Page @duarte4mendham
Right now, I am focused on the most important issue — the COVID-19 outbreak — and helping to provide information and support to residents and families. As part of the township's response, I spearheaded an outreach program to call elderly residents, in particular those living alone, to check in and ensure they are doing okay. I helped organize "Mendham Gives Back," a town-wide campaign to collect clothing, old sporting goods and food. As Chair of the Mendhams Stigma-Free Task Force, I worked on providing mental health resources to the community and lifting spirits through an inspirational lawn sign campaign. We sponsored a fundraising drive for the Interfaith Food Pantry. During my term, I have saved taxpayer money by declining to take a Township Committee salary in 2018, 2019 and 2020; cut costs on homeowners' utility bills through spearheading a new Energy Aggregation Program; sponsored a Resolution at the NJ League of Municipalities to restore the State and Local Tax (SALT) deduction; and supported a fiscally conservative municipal budget. I have worked to expand communication with residents and create greater transparency in local government; invest in recreation and parks; revive Brookside Beach and re-open the Ralston Playground. I am also working to increase property values through launch of a new Ad Hoc Marketing Communications Committee that is creating a plan to help promote Mendham to new families and counter the trend of declining property values.
It has been a pleasure to serve the residents of Mendham Township, since January 2018 on the Township Committee, and I would be honored to serve a second term. I believe my track record of getting things done, working in a bipartisan manner, and engaging residents, speaks to how I have been an effective member of the Township Committee. I bring new ideas to the table, and I get them done. Within a few months of taking office, for example, I wrote my first ordinance to add student representatives to several of our town's volunteer sub-committees. I launched the Mendhams Stigma-Free Task Force and have been the Chair for the past two years. I have launched and Chaired two communications sub-committees. The first committee in 2018, redesigned the town's Website, started a new e-mail newsletter and sponsored community forums. The second is focused on marketing Mendham to attract new families. I spearheaded the town joining an Energy Aggregation Program to cut utility bills for homeowners. I believe my experience as a communications professional has been invaluable in expanding communications to residents. In addition, my long track record of volunteer service in the community, prior to being elected, gives me a broad perspective of the town and knowledge of its many facets and key stakeholders. I think it's important to know your town and have volunteer experience in the community, prior to seeking elected office.
This is a terrible, unprecedented crisis. My thoughts and prayers are with residents who have suffered with the coronavirus and to their families. On a positive note, it has been wonderful to see the community pulling together. It has been heart-warming to hear about residents sewing face masks, buying groceries for neighbors and organizing meal drives for health care workers. We continue with outreach to our senior population, especially those who live alone. We need to ensure we have mechanisms to stay in touch with them. Through the Mendhams Stigma-Free Task Force, we are focused on working across the community, in partnership with our schools, police, clergy and others, to support families and our youth. In terms of the economic impact, Mendham does not have a commercial district and so we are vulnerable to homeowners being unable to pay their property taxes. We are seeing a small decline in tax revenue and will need to manage a fiscally conservative budget in 2021 and beyond.
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