FRANKLIN – Having expected to come on board to the Franklin Council at the start of 2014, plans changed in the borough and new councilman David Fanale was sworn in at the council’s most recent meeting on Tues., Nov. 26.
The change in moving Fanale to his seat early, was news to Fanale, after councilwoman Sue Gardell submitted a letter of resignation to the council on Nov. 13.
Gardell’s early departure was due to her family’s move from Franklin, which wrapped up earlier than anticipated. This was the reason she had not planned to run again for her seat.
Mayor Paul Crowley heads up the group of six council members. This year, Gardell’s and Nicholas Giordano’s term were up on Dec. 31. Terms for councilmen Joe Limon and Mark Zschack expire on Dec. 31, 2014, and Crowley’s and councilmen Frederick Babcock’s and Gilbert Snyder’s terms expire on Dec. 31, 2015.
All terms in Franklin are three years for council members –- the mayor’s term is for four years.
On the ballot during the June 4 primary, there were four Republican candidates challenging each other for two seats. Giordano took 369 votes, with Fanale garnering 223, beating out Judith Stampone (179 votes) and Thomas Conklin (146 votes).
On the Nov. 5 ballot, Democrat Patricia N. Rowett also joined the race. Giordano garnered 821 or 39.36 percent of the vote, followed by Fanale with 554 or 26.56 percent of the vote. Rowett took 434 or 20.81 percent. Write-in candidates comprised 277 or 13.28 percent of the votes.
Fanale has been a resident of the borough for the last four years, and is the owner of Garden State Wildlife Control with his fiancé, Kerry Hodgson. Fanale registered as a Constitutional Conservative on the Republican ticket, having been active with the GOP since 2009. He is the Sussex County Republican Committee Representative for Franklin Borough District #3. He is the Sussex County Coordinator for the Campaign for Liberty.
Fanale’s arrival to the council was facilitated because Gardell was an Independent candidate.
Regarding his early appointment to the council, Fanale told NJInsideScene.com, “It’s fortunate, that to continue the efficient function of the council, councilwoman Gardell was politically unaffiliated. It permitted the mayor to recommend my appointment to fulfill the remainder of Mrs. Gardell’s term without convening the municipal committee members. She and her husband, Rich, were an asset to the community and will be missed. As I’ve previously stated, I anticipate a cohesive environment in which we can all work together, engaging in healthy, lively debate when necessary, and bring prosperity to the borough.”
Editor’s Note: Photo accompanying story by Scott Baker; story by Jennifer Jean Miller
Get an “inside scene” of stories like this and more, on our website. Click here for our Facebook Page, which is another way you can stay in on the “inside scene!