Editor's note: The following questionnaire was completed before Hurricane Sandy made landfall.
A Republican incumbent, Robert Marchese is running for his second, three-year term on the currently all-Republican Fair Haven Borough Council.
With two seats up for grabs on the five-member council, Marchese is seeking to be one winner of four contenders, two Republicans and two Democrats. He has said he is a firm believer in transparency and open door policies in local government.
Learn more about Marchese by reading his answers to the following Patch questionnaire:
• Name: Robert K. Marchese
• Age: 50
• How long have you lived in Fair Haven? Since 1995
• Please list your community affiliations, volunteer work, special interests, accomplishments while on council (special): Served as liaison to Recreation for the first two years of my term and currently serve as Planning & Zoning liaison.
I voted in support of three municipal budgets, two of which reduced taxes, the third held the tax level flat. All three reduced spending. I voted in favor of privatizing sanitation and recycling.
I campaigned for a council meeting at Knollwood once a year so the students could participate during the day. The idea was adopted by council even before I was sworn in. It is now an annual event. This year will be the fourth year, with a meeting to be held on on Nov. 26.
I voted against the expansion of the Tree Ordinance, advocated for repeal of the Tree Ordinance or in the alternative that it be scaled back since in my opinion it is an unconstitutional interference with property rights.
I am serving as the first borough liaison to the Rumson-Fair Haven Substance Abuse Alliance.
I am in favor of reducing the number of planning and zoning ordinances as they affect residential property.
• Occupation: Attorney with offices in Red Bank and Staten Island
• What do you feel makes you uniquely qualified for council? My first term, my legal back ground and the fact I am also a small business owner running my own firm since 1994.
• What do you consider your greatest accomplishment on council? Fighting expansion of the Tree Ordinance and my votes on the budgets. Also, my vote to privatize sanitation.
• What change would you most like to affect on council in your next term and how do you propose to accomplish it? Consolidation of municipal services, especially concerning parks, recreation and police.
• Holding the line on taxes, preserving open space and protecting the diversity that has earned Fair Haven the distinctive reputation for being a quaint, down-to-earth town are all issues of paramount concern. How will you address these things?
Once again, consolidation must be considered of certain services to save the taxpayer money including police services.
Fighting any attempts to expand the Tree Ordinance and consider scaling it back to prevent only clear cutting. Immediately moving the Tree Ordinance from the Zoning Section of the borough ordinances to the Property Maintenance to alleviate the necessity of residents, under certain circumstances, needing a variance to remove a tree on their property.
Holding the line on taxes is the most important objective all my decisions have and will be measured against.
Concerning DeNormandie, I do and have supported the purchase. Based upon the recent Blue Water Grant received by the borough it is an even better deal for Fair Haven.
I do want to see some sort of accommodation on the sales price to compensate for the loss of use to the taxpayer based upon sellers inability to provide a clean title for over two plus years.
• A quote that you feel reflects your take on politics and policy? "If everyone likes a politician he or she is lying to someone."