Funds for Byram buildings rejected

SUSSEX COUNTY. Nov. 7 election results remain unofficial until all mail-in, absentee and provisional ballots are counted.

Byram /
| 14 Nov 2023 | 08:44

Byram voters soundly defeated a referendum asking them to approve a $9.7 million bond ordinance to finance construction of a new municipal building and police headquarters, according to unofficial results of the Nov. 7 election.

Mail-in and absentee ballots are accepted up to six days after Election Day, and provisional ballots are counted after the deadline for receiving mail-in/absentee ballots.

According to updated results reported Thursday, Nov. 9 by the Sussex County Clerk’s Office, 1,406 people voted no on ballot question while 861 voted yes.

Supporters of the building plan had said it was needed to bring the municipal building up to code and make it compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. In addition, they said a new police headquarters would provide a secure way to transport prisoners as well as proper storage for weapons and evidence.

Councilman Harvey Roseff, who opposed the referendum, had argued that the cost was too much to pay for office space that he said was not needed.

Byram Township Council

Councilman Raymond Bonker appears to have lost his seat, according to the unofficial results.

Leading in the race for three council seats were John “Jack” Gallagher Jr. with 1,391 votes, Richard Proctor with 1,351 voters and Lisa “Cris” Franco with 1,261 votes.

Bonker had 1,166 votes.

Gallagher and Franco also are incumbents.

Byram school board

Lauren Pedersen, Julie Lucente and Alexandria Cicchetti-Smith were leading in the race for three seats on the Byram Township Board of Education, according to the unofficial results.

Pedersen received 1,339 votes; Lucente, the board’s president, had 1,243 votes; and Cicchetti-Smith had 1,211, while James McBain, the board’s vice president, received 1,157.

Andover Township Committee

Republicans Thomas Walsh Jr. and Michael Lensak won races for two seats on the Andover Township Committee, according to the unofficial results.

Walsh, who is the township mayor, received 828 votes and Lensak had 697 compared with 586 for Karl Halteman, a Democrat.

Lensak, a former mayor and committeeman, won the GOP nomination along with Walsh in the June primary. Committeeman John Carafello came in third.

Branchville Borough Council

Democratic Councilwoman Mary Whitesell appeared to have lost her bid for re-election to the Branchville Borough Council.

Republicans Tania Bansemer and Beverly Bathgate, also an incumbent, received 153 and 145 votes, respectively, while Whitesell had 116, according to the unofficial results.

Stanhope school board

Carmen Pico and Mattia Scharfstein were leading in races for two seats with three-year terms on the Stanhope Board of Education.

Pico received 408 votes and Scharfstein, the board’s vice president, had 371 while Avery Quayle-Badolato had 351, according to the unofficial results.

In a race for one seat with a two-year term, Yacoub Yaghnam, who was appointed to the board in February, was leading with 363 votes compared with 310 for Lana Leguia.

Green Township school board

The three incumbents were re-elected to the Green Township Board of Education.

Board president Marie Bilik received 535 votes, Maureen McGuire had 517 and Melissa Van Blarcom had 513, according to unofficial results.

Maarit Kelvin Korpos received 251 votes.