Michelle Roth has sat on the Manalapan Township committee for the past 5 years, last year she served the town as Mayor. She is currently seeking 1 of 2 seats that are up for grabs in the State’s 12th Assembly District.
She was kind enough to return my 10 question questionnaire that I sent to candidates seeking assembly seats for Monmouth County. In doing so, Michelle Roth has become the 5th candidate to respond to my questionnaire.
While going over her responses I was struck by her business background and the fact that she earned an MBA in Finance from Fordham University. I also impressed by her ideas on how to control property taxes. She believes that if the emphasis for school funding was switch from property taxes to income taxes and school administration was centralized through the counties then savings could be realized through eliminating school districts and the consolidation of purchasing.
Read her reponses and decide for yourselves:
1. What is your motivation for seeking a seat in the NJ State Assembly and can you tell us a little about yourself?
I would like to change the way business is done in Trenton so we can get our spending under control and shift the funding of education away from property taxes and over to the State income tax system, where it belongs.
I earned an MBA in Finance from Fordham University and own a small consulting firm that does no business within the State of New Jersey. I have served on the Manalapan Township Committee for 5 years and was Mayor in 2008. I am married with three daughters.
2. As you meet residents throughout your district what seems to be the greatest concerns they are expressing and how do you plan to address them?
The only thing on everyone’s mind is the high cost of property taxes in New Jersey. There are several ways we can address this:
- – Shift the funding source for education from property taxes to the State Income Tax.
- – Shift school administration to the County level. This ensures greater economies of scale on purchasing, eliminates redundancies and centralizes management and hiring. This is done successfully elsewhere in our country without sacrificing quality in the classrooms. It will also be easier for budgeting oversight if there are only 21 school budgets to review Statewide instead of over 600.
- – Keep all police patrol functions local, but centralize administration at the County level. This works effectively in other states.
3. What do you hope to accomplish once you are elected to the State Assembly?
Make government more efficient.
4. What is it that makes your district unique and how does that uniqueness impact your campaign?
Our district is similar to other suburban districts. We have several small municipalities surrounded by larger ones.
5. If elected, how would your professional background enhance your ability to be an effective State Assembly representative?
My business background will be extremely valuable when dissecting the State’s budget. I have also had the opportunity to travel extensively within the US and internationally, which has allowed me to see how different ideas utilized by other governmental entities succeed elsewhere and then scrutinize what can be transplanted here.
6. Do you have any thoughts on how to contain the growth of state government?
Invest in infrastructure and technology to make government leaner and more efficient and less reliant on manpower.
7. Is there any aspect of state government that you believe there is a need to be expanded upon?
8. Why should residents of your district trust you to represent them in the legislature ?
The challenges that face us are both great and grave. We need to make sure that we have the right people in office making the tough decisions. As the Mayor of Manalapan, I made local government more transparent by televising all meetings and improving access to public records online. I prevented urban sprawl by purchasing open space and supporting farmland preservation programs. I also reduced the size of government while making it more efficient. I will work to do the same in Trenton.
Since I do not do business within the State of New Jersey, there is nothing I want from the Trenton machine. That means I will always do what is in the best interest of all the residents of the 12th district.
9. Why do you identify yourself as a Democrat as opposed to a Republican or Independent?
Although I am very fiscally conservative, I align socially with Democrats on issues such as women’s rights and civil rights.
10. Is there anything that is important to you that I hasn’t been asked, that you would like to address?
I believe we should institute campaign finance reform.
My name is Michelle Roth. I am running for Assemblywoman in District 12.
Like many women in Monmouth County I wear various hats. I am a working mother (of three daughters), wife and public servant. I have dedicated my time since my children were young to creating solutions that improve the future for all our children. I understand the challenges modern families face. I also understand that government needs to do a better job providing essential services and a lower tax bill so that our children and our parents can afford to stay in New Jersey. I worry about the future our children will inherit.
Because the challenges that face us are both great and grave, we need to make sure that we have the right people in office making the tough decisions. As the Mayor of Manalapan, I made local government more transparent by televising all meetings and improving access to public records online. I prevented urban sprawl by purchasing open space and supporting farmland preservation programs. I also reduced the size of government while making it more efficient. I will work to do the same in Trenton.
I am not the usual candidate for public office. I earned an MBA in Finance from Fordham University and own a small consulting firm that does no business within the State of New Jersey. There is nothing I want from the Trenton machine. Instead, I would like to change the way business is done in Trenton so we can get our spending under control and shift the funding of education away from property taxes and over to the State income tax system, where it belongs.
The Women’s Political Caucus of NJ recently endorsed me. They said that women elected to public office make a difference in our quality of life and change the political environment for the better by helping to restore the public’s trust in government. Women elected to public office waste no time in rolling up their sleeves to get the job done. I have also been endorsed by Planned Parenthood as I stand in defense of women’s rights.
Along with my running mate John Amberg, I have run a grassroots campaign, walking door to door and trying to speak with as many of the 141,000 voters in our district as possible. If we missed your door, I do apologize. You’ll notice that we had no fancy literature and did not bombard you with mailing after mailing. Nor have we said anything negative about our opponents. We’ve run a clean campaign based upon our ideas that we would enact when elected.
I know I can begin to fix the problems in Trenton but I need your help. On November 3rd, when you go out to vote, please vote for Michelle Roth and John Amberg. Let our voice be your voice in Trenton. Let us put your family first.
With warm regards,
Michelle Roth, Candidate
12th Assmebly District
This past Thursday, Oct 15th, The Brookdale Democratic Club held a “Meet the Democratic Candidates For Monmouth County” in the Warner Student Life Building on campus.
The meeting was attended by both students,faculty and a few members of the public. In all approximately 50 people came in and out of the gathering, at various times to listen to what the candidates had to say.
Candidates who were present at the event were:
Former Mayor of Neptune Randy Bishop and Brielle Councilman Rick Bolger, both NJ State Assembly Candidates for District 11.
Former Mayor of Manalapan Michelle Roth, NJ State Assembly Candidate for District 12.
Bob Brown and Jim Grenafege, NJ State Assembly Candidates for District 13.
Middletown Committeeman Sean F. Byrnes, Candidate for Monmouth County Freeholder.
The overwhelming theme of the day was to be informed, get involved and be self reliant, don’t rely on others to do for you.
It was very good advice for many in the room. Jim Grenafege mentioned how he did not look at the students in the room as our future, rather they should look at themselves as our the present and that the only difference between them and himself was about 40 years.
Everyone involved thought that the days event went well and was a success.
I videoed all but Bolger’s address to those in attendence ( I had techincal difficulty and appoligise for it) and present the 5 videos below:
The Brookdale Community College Democratic Club will be holding a meet and greet for the Democratic Candidates of Monmouth County on Oct. 15,2009 in room NAV III at 11:30 am.
Democratic Candidate for Freeholder Sean F. Byrnes will be joined by:
NJ State Assembly Candidates
Randy Bishop and Rick Bolger – Assembly District 11
Michelle Roth – Assembly District 12
Jim Greanafege and Bob Brown – Assembly District 13
A free lunch will also be provided.
Yesterday, I was honor to attend a gathering of Democratic Clubs that encompass the Two River area along the Navisink and Shrewsbury Rivers.
Members from the Fair Haven,Little Silver,Rumson,Shrewsbury and Shrewbury Boro. Democratic Clubs along with representatives from Red Bank and Middletown, joined together for the very first time at a meet and greet fundraiser for Fair Haven candidates Matthew Cohen and Margo Tikijian.
In all nearly 100 people attended the event hosted by Cory and John Hoffman of Fair Haven, in their house that overlooks the Navisink River, and none left disappointed.
Those who were in attendance were highly energized after hearing from guest speakers Freeholders Amy Mallet and Barbara McMorrow, Freeholder Candidate Sean F. Byrnes, NJ State Assembly Candidate for District 12 Michelle Roth and US Congressman Rush Holt. It was truly one of the most dynamic events I have ever attended.
For a taste of what the night was like, below is the video I recorded of Freeholder Candidate Sean Byrnes addressing the crowd:
Please Join the Fair Haven Democratic Municipal Committee and our neighboring Two River Democratic Clubs for an afternoon of food and drink overlooking the Navesink River with:
Congressman Rush Holt
Fair Haven Council – Matthew Cohen and Margo Tikijian
County Freeholder – Sean Byrnes
State Assembly – Michelle Roth and John Amberg
At the home of Cory and John Hoffman 54 Gillespie Ave Fair Haven
October 3, 2009 4:00-6:00pm
RSVP (732) 784-8008 or firstname.lastname@example.org (Suggested Donation $25 per person)