RED BANK CANDIDATES TO TAKE THEIR Qs

By: REBECCA DESFOSSE

With Election Day just three weeks away, the race for Red Bank borough council will heat up Wednesday night, as three candidates seeking two seats face off at the annual Red Bank Candidates Night.

Republican challenger Suzanne Viscomi is taking on Democratic incumbents Art Murphy and Mike DuPont in a structured debate with a Q&A session with the public.

Viscomi, chief financial officer of National Parts Supply, a family-owned auto parts distributor in New Brunswick, has served on the Board of Education since 2011. She announced last month that her running mate Allen Palma had to withdraw from the race and that she planned to run solo against the established incumbents from the entirely Democratic council.

Viscomi is running a campaign focused on what she says are the downsides of one-party rule: overspending and borrowing, a lack of transparency and “neglecting our small-town feel.”

Murphy, a lifelong Red Banker, owns a residential building company and serves as council president and liaison to the police department and volunteer emergency services. He’s been on the council since late 2003, when he was appointed to fill an unexpired term. He won a seat outright two months later, and is now closing out his third full three-year term.

DuPont, who heads up the council’s budget-setting finance committee and is in his second three-year term, is a lawyer in the Red Bank firm of McKenna, DuPont, Higgins and Stone, headed by former borough Mayor Ed McKenna. DuPont also serves on the New Jersey Turnpike Authority as treasurer and commissioner.

The Democrats are touting what they characterize as fiscal responsibility in a challenging economy, protection of both business and neighborhood interests, and transparency.

The event, hosted by the Westside Community Group, brings the three candidates to discuss the issues of key importance to borough residents. Moderated by WCG president Amy Goldsmith, each candidate will deliver three-minute opening and closing statements. In between, they’ll field questions from the audience.

Candidate’s night kicks off at 7 p.m. at the River Street Commons at 49 Catherine Street, on the first floor Community Room. ¬†All are welcome to attend. Off-street parking is limited.

For more information, call Amy Goldsmith at 732-747-0306 or Joyce Williams at 732-741-3715.

By the way, today is the last day in which citizens can register to vote in the November 6 election. Borough Clerk Pam Borghi plans to keep her office at the municipal building, 90 Monmouth Street, open until 9 p.m. for latecomers.