HomeTri-TownTri-Town NewsCalogero elected Jackson council president; Sauickie tapped as VP

Calogero elected Jackson council president; Sauickie tapped as VP

JACKSON – Mayor Michael Reina and members of the Township Council held the 14th reorganization meeting of the Mayor and Township Council and the 176th reorganization meeting of Jackson Township on Jan. 2 in the municipal building.

The business of the meeting saw Martin Flemming appointed to fill a one-year term on the governing body.

Following that, Councilman Barry Calogero was elected by his fellow members to serve as council president for 2020 and Councilman Alex Sauickie III was elected to serve as vice president.

Calogero thanked his colleagues for their support and said, “As did my predecessor (Robert Nixon), I will continue to be fair, honest and ensure the best interests of all Jackson residents are always a top priority of this dais.

“2019 was ushered in with the much deserving re-election of our three-term mayor Mike Reina and two newly elected councilman, Alex Sauickie and Andy Kern. Both hit the floor running and greatly contributed to the success of 2019,” Calogero said.

He said by working as a team, the governing body shared many accomplishments.

“The mayor and his staff continue to present the council with fiscally responsible budgets. Our combined efforts have yielded a near record high surplus, established a sound employment record, fully equipped (the Department of Public Works), stronger code enforcement and a better economic development climate,” Calogero said.

“Our tax collection is at an almost perfect rate with 98% collections. Our parks and playgrounds are undergoing a tremendous renovation. We have ensured our Second Amendment rights are being upheld as it relates to gun permits. We took a stance against liberal Trenton and voiced our disdain over sanctuary cities,” he said.

Calogero said a collaborative effort by the mayor and council resulted in the acquisition of the former Rova Farms property in the Cassville section of Jackson that will be preserved as open space.

The new council president said he was proud to report Jackson now has a record high police force of 96 officers watching over the 100-square-mile township.

“These brave men and women put their lives on the line every day and I will say for the record they are second to no other police force in the state,” Calogero said.

Kern echoed Calogero’s statements and joked that he has been reminded many times that he and Sauickie are no longer freshmen on the council.

“In March, I toured every playground in the township with the DPW. We inspected every slide and basketball net and I personally sat on every swing. During that tour we identified the most urgent repairs and renovations needed so our children could play safely.

“I am proud to report that many repairs have been completed. Additionally, one playground has been fully renovated and two others will be completed before spring,” Kern said.

“I met with leaders from the major sports leagues in town, together with the business administrator, to identify much needed facility improvements like practice fields at Camp Joy and Johnson Park that we can revamp quickly and inexpensively.

“These improvements will make a huge impact for our young athletes. We also were brought up to speed about the much needed larger projects such as turf replacement,” Kern said.

He thanked groups including Jackson Soccer, Jackson Youth Football and Cheer, the Holbrook Little League, the Jackson Little League; organizations including Kiwanis, the Rotary Club and the Chamber of Commerce, and first responders, fire companies and first aid units.

Kern said communication is vital to the success of any organization.

“Put together, there are thousands of people who volunteer throughout our town. I am calling on all residents to get out and get involved. Volunteer your time or donate your skills to a local organization,” the councilman said.

In other business, council members appointed Gregory McGuckin to the position of township attorney. McGuckin served as the attorney for the Planning Board in 2019.

William Allmann was appointed as a member of the Jackson Township Municipal Utilities Authority for a five-year term from Feb. 1, 2020 through Jan. 31, 2025.

Flemming was appointed as the Township Council’s designee on the Planning Board for 2020. Bressi served as the council’s designee in 2019.

Jeffrey Riker was reappointed to the Planning Board and will serve as the mayor’s designee. Riker was also appointed chairman of the Jackson Environmental Commission.

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