Hornik seeks fourth term; cites accomplishments of past 12 years

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MARLBORO – Democrat Jonathan Hornik is running unopposed for a fourth four-year term as the mayor of Marlboro.

Election Day is Nov. 5 and polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.

A Republican candidate who was elected in the June primary to challenge Hornik this year subsequently dropped out of the race, leaving Hornik as the only candidate for Marlboro’s top elected position.

Hornik was elected mayor in November 2007 and took office in January 2008. He was re-elected in 2011 and 2015. His fourth term as mayor will run from Jan. 1, 2020 through Dec. 31, 2023.

Hornik, who is an attorney and a lifelong resident of Marlboro, said that when he was elected 12 years ago, “I stressed the need for investment in public safety and infrastructure, including roads and open space preservation, while getting our fiscal
house in order. … I am pleased we have been able to accomplish as much as we
have, and my focus for the next four years will be on these same critical areas.”

In looking ahead to his next term, the mayor said, “First, investment in public safety and infrastructure requires a strong fiscal house. Our (AAA credit rating), which is shared by only 5% of the towns in New Jersey, ensures that Marlboro borrows at the lowest cost possible when it invests in its critical infrastructure.

“We achieved this by reducing the number of full-time employees by more than 11%, requiring employees to contribute up to 35% of the cost of health insurance, and offering a program to incentivize employees who have alternate coverage to opt out of the township’s insurance plan.

“In 2017 we negotiated a new base health plan with the two largest unions, which has resulted in a 21% premium savings on every enrollment. We have instituted a merit-based raise program with two other groups, tying raises to higher performance in the workplace,” he said.

Regarding Marlboro’s infrastructure, Hornik said, “We have dedicated $10 million to road improvements over the past two years, constructed sidewalks, addressed traffic intersections and completed park improvements at several locations.

“With the help of a recently awarded $875,000 grant, the township will complete a critical component of its pedestrian access plan, making key locations more accessible, connecting schools, the municipal complex and library, retail establishments and houses of worship with sidewalks. Under a separate grant funding stream, the missing links of the Henry Hudson Trail will also be completed.

“I am very proud of our record of preserving more than 260 acres of land and protecting property from development. To do so, we have secured more than $4 million in outside funding and will continue to do so during a new term in office,” he said.

“I first ran on the preservation of the Stattel farm (at Route 520 and Route 79), which was slated by prior administrations (for) housing. … It was one of my proudest moments as mayor when the acquisition of this land was completed in 2017 and, notably, was accomplished without any budget impact,” Hornik said.

As to the prospects of a fourth term and his plans for the next four years, Hornik said, “Our mantra will remain ‘smart growth’ as we continue to generate new, clean, smart commercial tax ratables and support our local businesses, with the understanding this directly reduces the burden on residential property taxpayers.

“We know that a focus on quality of life issues and a strong fiscal house are self-fulfilling. Simply put, businesses want to be in Marlboro. We formed the Economic Development Committee in 2008 with a mandate to make Marlboro more business friendly and to attract new enterprises. Since then we have generated new commercial development resulting in $100 million in new tax ratables,” he said.

“Over the last several years, Marlboro has consistently been named one of the 50 safest communities in New Jersey, including in 2019. In 2017, Marlboro was recognized as one of the 100 best places in New Jersey to raise a family, one of only three municipalities in Monmouth County. We were recently ranked No. 22 in the list of ‘Safest Cities in America to Raise a Family’ and 34th ‘Safest City in America.’

“Marlboro police maintain a substantial presence in our local schools. Initiated before the tragic school shooting in Parkland, Fla., the township continues to assign armed school security officers under the direction of Marlboro police, which ensures an armed police presence in all of our public schools. I remain firmly committed to continuing this program in the future and to maintaining one of the safest large suburban communities in the country.

“In a new term, I will continue with my pledge to invest in our infrastructure, work with schools and police to keep our community safe, deliver the services which make us unique, and maintain our status as a premier destination for residents and businesses alike,” Hornik said.