Former state Senator Jennifer Beck will launch her political comeback on Monday when she files her petitions to seek the Republican nomination for Mayor of Red Bank, MMM has learned.
“Red Bank needs leadership,” Beck said in a statement announcing her candidacy. “Mayor Menna is a delightful man, a great compromiser, but in his nine years in office little has changed. Taxes are too high, water rates are too high, there are too many retail vacancies, and parking is a nightmare. The governing body is running in place and playing petty politics.”
Red Bank Republicans did not nominate a candidate for mayor when they met to choose their municipal candidates last Thursday evening, opting to give Democrat Mayor Pat Menna a free pass into office for the third time. Menna has not been challenged since he beat John Curley in 2006 when the then Red Bank councilmen faced off to replace Ed McKenna as leader of the borough.
Beck will file her nominating petitions with the borough clerk before the 4pm deadline on Monday afternoon and is expected to be unopposed for the GOP nomination in the June 5 primary.
Incumbent one term Republican councilmen Mark Taylor and Michael Whelan made a surprise last minute announcement on Thursday night that they would not seek reelection citing their failure to impact “partisan gridlock” during their three years in office. Taylor and Whelan say they will endeavor to change Red Bank’s form of government to a non-partisan municipality which requires collecting approximately 1300 voters signatures on a petition and a referendum.
“I look forward to walking door to door with Michael and Allison and making our case to Red Bank voters,” Beck said
Republicans took control of the Red Bank governing body with Taylor and Whelan’s election in 2015 and quickly lost control of themselves with intra-party infighting. The Democrats easily took control back with sweeps in two consecutive elections while the GOP failed to forward the reform agenda they campaigned on.