HomeShamong NewsMeet the Candidates: Shamong Township Committee

Meet the Candidates: Shamong Township Committee

Planning to vote on Nov. 5? Here’s the rundown on who’s running for the two open seats on the Shamong Township Committee.

Name: Michael S. Di Croce

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Age: 62

Occupation: Attorney

Political Affiliation: Republican

Clubs/Organizations you belong to: Admitted to Practice Law in the states of New Jersey and Pennsylvania; Burlington County Bar and American Bar Associations; Medford Masonic Lodge #178; Holy Eucharist Church and BCBA Pro Bono Legal Services Volunteer.

I am running for reelection with Deputy Mayor Tim Gimbel to continue to make Shamong a “Little Slice of Heaven.” We had a great year in 2019. (For more information, Google: “’State Of Shamong’ Is Sound But Could Use A Few Good Volunteers”)

Our focus is to continue to: reduce property taxes (last year, for the first time in memory, we reduced local taxes an average of $250 per home – Google: “Shamong Taxes are going down”); run the town like a business, doing more with less, spending no more than absolutely necessary; attracting new business ratables to reduce the burden on taxpayers; keep the government small; and continually show respect and be responsive.

We are working on:

  • Fixing our roads, with Grassy Lake now at the top of the list with Indian Mills and Oak Shade Roads recently completed (Google: “Shamong Committee Discusses Road Repairs”)
  • Exploring the issue of allowing our farmers to grow cannabis, if the state/voters authorize it and if we can do this safely, with the goal to fully utilizing our farms while protecting our air, water and pristine environment, leading to increased tax revenues to reduce local property taxes, creating 100 new local private jobs and supporting our school programs. (Google: “Shamong: Pot Growing Capital Of N.J.?”)
  • Locating a cell tower on appropriate township/school-owned property to increase cell coverage, safety and add additional internet competition to drastically reduce cell phone bills (Google: “What can Shamong Township expect in 2019?”)
  • Increasing, continuing and introducing new community events
  • Bringing new visitors to Shamong to utilize amenities and support local businesses
  • Reducing vacant and unloved properties
  • Making common sense decisions to have our government be responsive, not overbearing or adding to the “nanny state” mentality, realizing that every time a new law is passed, we lose a little more of our freedom (Google “Should We Build A $20 Million Circle Or ‘Go ‘Round In Circles’ In Shamong?”)

My goal is to help change the mindset of “I can’t wait to get out of New Jersey,” to “I live in the best town in New Jersey – Shamong Township! — where the taxes are low, the government unobtrusive, where personal liberty and responsibility are cherished.”

Tim and I pledge to continue do what is best for our town and all of our neighbors and we ask for your support and vote and thank you for the privilege, trust and honor you have given to us.

Name: Lauren Smith

Age: 36

Occupation: Concierge for Senior Assisted Living Facility

Political Affiliation: Democrat

I chose to run for Shamong Township Committee because I would like to see the town remain unchanged and committed to its current nature while exploring new ideas for the future.

As a single parent, my focus was on my only child, Joey. In search of a place to raise my child I chose Shamong due to the sense of feeling safe, the serene nature of the town and the educational environment. I understand the value of an education and the role that a community can play in raising a child. If I am not working at home, taking care of my son, cooking, cleaning or working on the house, I am off to work at Brightview Greentree Marlton serving and caring for the senior community.

Issue No. 1: Cell Tower

If a cell tower is necessary, the applicate must show the need. According to the ordinance, it would have to be placed on township property.  This was done to help the township raise revenues for the bottom line. I am not opposed to a cell tower being built in Shamong if it is needed. The idea that it would go on township land for the revenue is the right thing to do.

Issue No. 2: Roundabout

In speaking with the voters, I have found that the residents do not want the circle. I support exploring other alternatives that will rectify the problem without spending the large amount of money that is being touted by the current administration.

Issue No. 3: Marijuana

We need to ensure the safety and protection of the residents. Cannabis growth or distribution should be taken seriously. I am not opposed to medical marijuana to help people who need it, and it is legal in New Jersey. However, recreational cannabis is currently not legal. When and if it is, I will be ready to look at the information to make a responsible decision for Shamong.

Name: Eileen Carlos

Age: 58

Occupation: Office Manager/Tax Assessor

Political Affiliation: Democrat

Clubs/Organizations you belong to: AMANJ, NRAAO and BCAMA all acronyms for Tax Assessor memberships, Alice Paul NOW, NJEA, BCEA and LDEA, all acronyms for the education association memberships, NJ League of Municipalities, Shamong  Historical Society and VFW Auxiliary

I’m a motivated professional with decision-making proficiency and experience in municipal government, tax assessment and office management. My professional background and personal drive make me an ideal candidate. To date, I’ve walked 95 percent of the town to earn their vote. I will continue that work on behalf of the residents.  They rely on elected officials to make the right decision to protect their interests.

I am a mother of two adult children and a 6-year-old granddaughter. I moved to Burlington County 32 years ago and settled in Shamong from Tabernacle as a single nester. I am an office manager for LRHSD and a tax assessor for Bordentown Township.

The Issues:

  • Roundabout (circle) – waste of tax dollars for a remote location. I spoke with the voters and the polite comment is that it is “silly.” Many ideas and suggestions were made that make sense. I will work to find alternative ways to cure the problem.
  • Cannabis – To be taken seriously. The state is dictating the licensing, regulations and locations. I have been following this issue and it is just too early to know the exact details. What we do know is that recreational marijuana is not legal at this time. I will continue to be involved with learning the state’s intentions.  I want to be prepared to defend Shamong when the time comes.
  • Cell Tower – I will fight with the residents to put it on township-owned property in an obscure location. The revenue generated will add stability to the budget. The residents will reap the benefit if we have common sense economic decisions.

Name: Timothy L. Gimbel

Age: 53

Occupation: Software Sales Executive

Clubs/Organizations: Holy Eucharist Church

My goal will always remain the same…to uphold the commitment that I made to my family 19 years ago, when we moved to our town.

The commitment to get involved, the commitment to make a difference, the commitment to set an example for my sons, that service to your community brings about tremendous personal growth. It started with coaching youth sports in IMAA, it can be volunteering as a member of our township land-use board and it continues today with the honor of being a member of our township team.

Mike DiCroce and all of the members of the township council share the same common goal for Shamong, “fiscal responsibility and common sense management.”

At a time, when our Democratic leadership (governor/legislature) continues to struggle with no new ideas for property tax reform, when our Democratic majority continues to ignore a state pension system spiraling, financially out of control and when our state leaders continue to cut state funding for our local schools.

Mike DiCroce and I will to continue to look inward at our town:

  • We will continue the management process to maintain/reduce, our local portion of your property taxes.
  • We will continue the process of repairs to our local road infrastructure (in a fiscally responsible manner), this a 10-year program.
  • We will continue to strive to grow our business tax revenues (without changing our town’s rural Pinelands nature).
  • We will continue to build a greater sense of community within our town (with the goal to retain and attract citizens to our “Little Slice of Heaven” here in Burlington County)

These are the answers to the question, “Why are we running for re-election?”

Mike DiCroce and I are not politicians, we and the other members of the council are stewards of Shamong Township. And it would be an honor and privilege to win your vote, on Tuesday, Nov. 5, and represent our community, once again.


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