From left at top: Democrats Michael Ballard and Michael DuPont square off against Republicans Mark Taylor and Michael Whelan at the annual Candidates’ Night on October 1. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)


Election 2015 graphicWith the balance of power at stake, election season for two open seats on the Red Bank council kicks into high gear on October 1.

That’s when the West Side Community Group is scheduled to host its 19th annual Candidates’ Night.

All four council candidates have confirmed they’ll attend, according to community group president Amy Goldsmith. They are:

Michael DuPont, a Democrat and the only incumbent on the ballot, who’s seeking his fourth three-year term

Michael Ballard, a Democrat and member of the borough board of ed

• Mark Taylor, a Republican newcomer to politics

Mike Whelan, ditto.

A single win by the Republicans, who have claimed two seats in the last two elections, would draw the GOP even with the Democrats on the six-member governing body. Two wins would give the GOP a majority for the first time since 1989.

The format for the event, which runs from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., includes an opening statement of up to three minutes by each candidate; one hour of questions from the audience; and three-minute closing statements.

Goldsmith, as usual, will moderate.

The entrance to River Street Commons — the former River Street School — is at 49 Catherine Street. Off-street parking is limited.

For more information, call Amy Goldsmith at 732-747-0306.