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Union County Clerk

The County Clerk is responsible for the administration of a broad range of services including the filing and recording of all documents affecting real estate ownership/transfer, the processing of U.S. Passport applications, assisting individuals who wish to become a Notary Public, the filing of Business Trade Names and the supervision of Primary, General, School Board and Special Elections.The term of the County Clerk is five years.

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  • Peter B. Lijoi
    (Rep)

  • Candidate picture

    Joanne Rajoppi
    (Dem)

Biographical Information

In your view, what are the biggest issues facing the Clerk's Office at this time?

Why are you the best qualified to serve as County Clerk?

The County Clerk serves as the Clerk of Elections. What measures do you support to improve and secure elections and voting in the county?

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Campaign Email joanne.rajoppi@gmail.com
The most noticeable challenge is how does an essential governmental agency mandated to process

property documents and conduct elections do so in a pandemic. We have found innovative ways to maintain

services while keeping staff and customers safe. There was no interruption in the workflow of the

County Clerk’s office throughout the closedown. This was accomplished by initiating our disaster plan,

reducing in-house staff, allowing flex time and allocating off site work at home to those with high risk factors

or child rearing/family issues.

In the area of elections we were able to prepare and conduct the primary by building a temporary room in

the Clerk’s Record Room large enough to accommodate staff while social distancing.

Another challenge is the rapid development of technologies. Technology has changed the way real estate

documents, for example, are processed i.e. through electronic transmission; the way information is generated

to residents, i.e. apps and websites, among other benefits. The challenge is to adapt the evolving

technology of the coming years to meet the needs of our residents while recognizing that cyber security is

paramount
Experience, a proven record of innovation and success and a national and International network of

government resources makes me the most qualified to serve as County Clerk.

I have conducted dozens of elections in good times and bad (Superstorm Sandy and the COVID 19

pandemic) over the course of 25 years while maintaining integrity, transparency and the chain of custody of

ballots. I have served as President of the NJ Association of Counties and NJ Association of Constitutional

Officers. Nationally I have served as President of the International Association of County Clerks, Recorders,

Election Officials, Treasurers and Recorders as well as providing input and testimony to many state legislative

bodies and Federal Commissions. Building on the network of state and national colleagues has

allowed me to share best practices of County Clerks from around the country.

I am also a frequent speaker on Clerk subjects especially elections most recently appearing at the Harvard

Alumni Club of DC and the Rutgers Eagleton Forum on Voting.
My strongest recommendation is a review of all current state election laws with an intent to update,

modernize and streamline. New Jersey election law is complex, often rests on outdated processes and

procedures and is not compiled under a single statute. In addition New Jersey is unique in the fact that

every year there is a statewide election. Election laws and accessibility to the process should reflect this fact.

Another legislative area to investigate is early voting which necessitates a large capital investment by the

state to purchase electronic poll books. I believe a strong democracy should foster and encourage Its voters

to be able to vote in various venues, by mail, in person and by early voting.

Another area to pursue is greater access to voter information. I make a practice of posting voting

information on a website and app including a sample ballot, elected officials listing, candidate listing, how to

vote, registration info along with 19 other functions. I believe this should be a statewide practice.

Lastly cyber security is an ongoing concern. My staff and I attend state sponsored security training

seminars best practices and coordinate functions through NJ Homeland Security and National Security.