HILLSBOROUGH: Incumbent Republicans to face Dems for township committee

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By Andrew Martins, Managing Editor
There were no surprises in Hillsborough Township late Tuesday night, as the final results of this year’s primary elections revealed that both pairs of Democratic and Republican candidates will be running for two three-year terms on the township committee this November.
According to unofficial results from the Somerset County Board of Elections, Republican incumbents Doug Tomson and Gloria McCauley earned 1,639 and 1,643 votes, respectively.
Their Democratic counterparts, political newcomers Jane M. Staats and Harry J. Burke, each received 1,646 and 1,622 votes, respectively.
With the primary elections now behind them, Tomson said both he and McCauley were excited to highlight their “positive message about all of our achievements” in the coming months.
“I am once again honored and humbled to be representing the Republican Party on the ballot this November,” he said. “That being said, as a life long resident of this town, I work hard for all of our constituents to keep Hillsborough one of the best places to live in America.”
Tomson, a 36-year Hillsborough resident, has served on the township committee since his swearing in on Jan. 3, 2012. Since then, he has held the position of deputy mayor in 2013 and mayor in 2014 and 2015.
He is also the Government Affairs Director for the New Jersey Association of REALTORS, where he is charged with following, analyzing and working with lawmakers to amend legislative and regulatory measures that have an impact on homeownership.
While at an election night event held by the Jack Ciattarelli campaign, McCauley echoed the sentiments of her running mate, citing her excitement for another opportunity to run in November.
“I think just in general, with the way elections have been from the top-down so very passionately driven, I’m looking forward to running for the township and winning,” she said.
McCauley, a 30-year Hillsborough resident, has served in a public capacity since she was elected to the committee in 2008. Earlier this year, she was named the township’s deputy mayor for the third time, having previously held the title in 2010 and 2010. She was also elected to serve as mayor in 2011.
Prior to joining the governing body, McCauley was an elected member to the township’s Charter Study Commission in 2007. That same year, she served on the Somerset County Planning Board and was chosen as outstanding woman in Somerset County in 2008 for her public service.
In her professional life, McCauley is a broker and realtor for RE/MAX Preferred Professionals in Hillsborough.
As the Republicans look to secure another term on the governing body, both Staats and Burke said they were ready to take their ideas for the township to the voters.
For Staats, who said seeing her name on the ballot was a “humbling experience,” that excitement stems from speaking face to face with residents.
“Harry Burke and I have been meeting with the residents of Hillsborough, including going door to door for months. As we engage in conversations with them, we are listening to their concerns about our community,” she said. “We are confident that we will continue to serve Hillsborough throughout the months leading up to the election in November, and afterwards as well.”
Staats is a 30-year resident of Hillsborough who raised her son Wayne with her husband Gregory Staats in the township. She received her bachelor’s degree from La Salle University in Philadelphia and her master’s degree at Rutgers University.
Having taught math for more than three decades as a public school teacher, the recent retiree spent more than half of her career at Hillsborough High School, where she also created and facilitated a smoking cessation group for the students.
Along with his running mate, Burke said he was appreciative of the turnout on Tuesday while further citing what he said were “disagreements” with how the township is being run.
“We have honest disagreements with the incumbents this year,” he said. “Hillsborough is 4-5 years behind on road projects, services have consistently been outsourced and quality control often suffers. We have a case to make and we are going to take it to the voters and residents here in Hillsborough.”
Burke was born and raised within the township. He received his bachelor’s degree in government and politics from St. John’s University; he is currently enrolled at Rutgers University, where he is pursuing his master’s degree in Political Science: United Nations and Global Policy studies.
He was actively involved in varsity sports in school and played lacrosse at St. John’s, a Division 1 team. He worked at various programs for children and adults with disabilities, including ARC of Somerset County, Camp HEART of Hillsborough Recreation Department and Meals on Wheels. In high school, Burke traveled to Uganda, where he assisted building a home for a family of seven, coached lacrosse to youths there and participated in other various projects throughout that country.
Along with the local results, unofficial numbers provided by Hillsborough Township Clerk Pamela Borek revealed that despite losing to Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno in the Republican gubernatorial primary, Assemblyman and Hillsborough native Jack Ciattarelli enjoyed a massive electoral lead in the township with 1,410 votes over her 305.
For the Democrats in the gubernatorial election, Phillip Murphy took 721 votes, with the runner up being Assemblyman John Wisniewski coming up close behind with 631 total votes.

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