According to Deputy Mayor Harry Platt, it’s been approximately 13 years since a woman held a seat on Voorhees Township committee.
Andrea “Andi” Ayes was sworn during last night’s reorganization meeting along with Mayor Michael Mignogna, Deputy Mayor Mario DiNatale and Platt.
Ayes and DiNatale campaigned together during 2012 for two open seats on the Voorhees Committee. The two Democratic candidates won over Republicans Tom Booth and Dan Buck.
During their campaign, both Ayes and DiNatale wanted to reduce township spending while maintaining the same level of services for the residents, and establish a closer relationship with the schools.
Mignogna said Ayes brings a “fresh perspective and new energy to the township committee.” He said her first initiative, along with DiNatale, is to establish a closer relationship with the schools.
In light of the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary, one specific goal for committee members in 2013 is to find ways of improving school security without hindering taxpayers.
DiNatale said he is “very tough on the buck.”
“We can make a difference in this town without spending tax dollars,” he said, adding when it comes to schools, the township committee can find a way to improve safety without spending a great deal of money.
“It’s paramount that our kids feel as safe as they do in their house when they go to our Voorhees schools,” he said.
Ayes, reiterating DiNatale’s statement on school safety said she hopes to bring a “female perspective” to township committee.
By establishing a subcommittee and public safety director, Ayes said she is attempting to take the necessary steps to not only ensure proper communication is established between the schools and the township, but to improve school security as well.
“I take this oath very seriously. I promise to serve to the best of my abilities and always keep the residents of Voorhees’s best interest at heart,” she said.